DEN Trend Report: 12/14/16

Looking to learn more about what’s trending in education?!? Here’s a recap of this week’s news. Let us know what you think about this week’s news in the comments below.

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Can Tiger Woods Transform His Charitable Foundation Into A Lasting Legacy? (Fast Company)

By Elizabeth Segran

It’s a sunny day in Southern California. At One Tiger Woods Way, four miles north of Disneyland in Anaheim, dozens of kids are streaming down a tree-lined path into an enormous glass and sandstone building called the TGR Learning Lab. Many of them don’t fully understand who Tiger Woods is, although they see his name etched on the side of the building. They don’t hear much about him on TV and they’re too young to remember him in his prime.

Outlook 2017: Experts forecast the future of K12 (District Administration)

Education faces no shortage of important challenges in the quest to improve our nation’s schools. Whether it’s the debate over testing, racial issues, learning standards or shrinking funding, 2017 promises to be a year of change—for better or worse.

We asked education thought leaders and experts to identify a single issue in K12 education where shifts in policy or practice could lead to significant improvement in outcomes.

Is a virtual education the future for K-12 students? (eSchool News)

Virtual education expert details six ways these schools are better than traditional brick-and-mortar classrooms

Modern technology connects us and allows communities to share resources in unprecedented ways. Virtual education leverages these connections to provide everyone, regardless of geographic location, access to experts and high quality learning experiences. As technology has improved, virtual education has evolved to become a tool that helps close gaps in high schools and colleges.

Quality online learning programs provide rigorous curriculum, meaningful teaching resources, and access to specialized programs, such as industry training for students, schools and teachers.

How To Ensure Students Are Actively Engaged and Not Just Compliant (MindShift)

Engagement is a crucial part of learning, but ensuring students are actively engaged is more complex than whether a student is paying attention or not. As technology has made its way into the classroom many educators describe how attentive students are when on devices, but a quiet, outwardly behaved student is not the same thing as one that is truly engaged. The kind of engagement that leads to learning is three dimensional.

Around the World in 80 (School) Days, Thanks to Virtual Field Trips (Getting Smart)

By Brandon Wislocki

Over the past year, my fourth grade students have become “frequent fliers.”

We’ve visited Ford’s Theatre in Washington, D.C., took a tour of a poultry farm in Ohio, explored a manufacturing plant in England and even traveled to Mars alongside NASA experts.

What’s more, no field trip permission slips were even required; we did it all from our classroom through virtual field trips (VFTs).

Challenges persist when gamifying education (Education Dive)

By Shalina Chatlani

Effectively engaging students in the classroom within an age of constant technological distraction can often seem like a battle of the brain, one where teachers consistently try to strike the balance between substantive learning goals and fun. Increasingly, educators looking for new ways to improve student outcomes have turned their attention toward interactive teaching tools, such as gamification.

School leaders share tips for becoming ‘Future Ready’ (Education Dive)

By Tara Garcia Mathewson

When Principal Lourenco Garcia set out to transform Revere High School, he focused on structure. Revere, MA, about five miles northeast of Boston, is home to a large international population, with almost one-third of residents in 2010 identified as foreign-born in the U.S. Census.

Strategist outlines habits of most successful schools (Education Dive)

Dive Brief:

  • After a series of digital leadership summits in California that reached 150 administrators, CDW-G education strategist Eric Patnoudes compiled a list of five common practices used by the most successful schools.
  • Patnoudes writes for EdTech: Focus on K-12 that all successful schools make working across silos a priority and they set long-term goals, planning backward to ensure the proper conditions are in place to actually reach them.
  • These schools recognize the difference between training, or helping teachers figure out the “how,” and professional development, which focuses on the “why” — and they offer both, they support principal leadership, and superintendents hold principals accountable for organizational culture and change management.

Survey: Students Face Challenges Outside the Classroom (U.S. News & World Report)

Teachers and principals agree that regardless of poverty level, students face learning barriers outside of school and more needs to be done to address these problems, according to a survey released Wednesday by Scholastic Education.

8 steps to pilot smarter K-12 edtech product tests (EdScoop)

By Wyatt Kash

Mike Nagler has seen his share of edtech product demonstrations as superintendent at Mineola Public Schools on Long Island, New York. And if there’s one thing he’s learned, it’s the value of conducting bona-fide pilot tests.

Pilot programs aren’t the same as product demonstrations, or even beta tests, as Nagler and others see it. Conducted properly, pilot programs can help school systems weigh the potential value and impact of new education tools in ways that beta or other tests typically can’t.