It’s American Education Week – a time to raise public awareness of the importance of education and to highlight the great work teachers across the nation are doing in the classroom every day. And what better way for us to do this than to, once again, recognize the outstanding work done by Kristin Kipp, an online English teacher for the Jefferson County 21st Century Virtual Academy in Colorado and the SREB 2011 National Online K-12 Teacher of Year! We had the opportunity to sit down with Kristin to hear her secrets for success in online teaching and learning, and to discuss the most effective ways to engage online students.
On October 4, 2011 the following tweet from Mariette DiChristina (@mdichristina), Editor in Chief of Scientific American, appeared on my Twitter timeline. The message was simple: After reading the short article Calling All Scientists, I was inspired. Scientific American magazine is calling all scientists who are willing to volunteer to advise on curricula, answer a classroom’s questions, or visit a school in their geographic area. Also, Nobel laureates at the Lindau, Germany meetings are extending a special invitation to its scientist attendees to be a part of 1,000 Scientists in 1,000 Days initiative to get scientists involved with schools. This comes at a wonderfully appropriate time.
Tech & Learning Magazine, one of the leading resources for K-12 leaders, has included three Blackboard products in their list of the top 100 educational technology products of 2011! CourseSites and Edline’s LCMS were listed among the “Best Upgraded Products” and Blackboard Mobile Learn was included as one of the “Best New Products” of the year. These wins help solidify our company commitment to the K-12 space and showcase our diverse range of capabilities – from communication to instruction – that support the work teachers and districts are doing every day.
Guest post by Paul Roberge I’m very excited to head to Indiana to attend the Virtual School Sympsoiusm (VSS) next week. For virtual schools, Blackboard Collaborate serves as a replacement for the physical buildings and infrastructure. Everything that a brick and mortar school does – from teaching, parent visits, conducting exams, to guidance counseling – can all happen online in Blackboard Collaborate sessions. Blackboard Collaborate is an education friendly, interactive, extensible and reliable virtual classroom environment that provides a student experience chalked full of collaboration and peer-to-peer interaction.
Today’s digital natives – those who have had access to computers, cell phones, email, and other forms of technology since birth – expect their professors to integrate media into the curriculum to augment learning in the classroom. In fact, students report that campus technology offerings are an important part of their school selection criteria: CDW highlights in its annual 21st Century Campus Report that 87% of current college students considered their institution’s technology offerings when selecting their college and that 92% of current high school students say that technology is an important consideration in their college selection process. These are amazing statistics and illustrate how important it is for institutions to consider a campus media platform that allows instructors and students to expand their educational experience and incorporate rich media into every part of the learning environment.