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Professional Development for All

All of the ideas and all of the educational technology in the world will be useless unless teachers know how to use it with their students in meaningful 21st Century ways. What can we do to make sure that ALL teachers not only have access to, but actually take and use the proper professional development to implement education technology tools and 21st Century learning skills in the millions of classrooms across the country? ...more »

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Video games for learning

Research has shown that action video games can improve things like low-level vision or perceptual processing. How can we use these finding to make video games, which can engage students for hours, valuable complements to other instruction?

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Supporting innovators

A real challenge facing schools is how to support the innovators in their ranks, yet meet the demands of the somewhat unreasonable NCLB requirements. Principals fear taking risks in this climate that is punitive. Instead of a punitive climate which punishes risk-taking, work needs to be done on improving a more innovative, fast-moving, risk-taking climate. Policies which better support this sort of innovation are needed; ...more »

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Design Challenges for Kids That Solve Real-World Problems

Students (especially from middle grades up) can self-form global teams and create innovative, real solutions to global problems using technology as a platform to communicate, create and share. Designs can include 3D fabrication of real objects, which can then be tested and played with in remote locations, then improved and re-designed and shared again. Incentives for winning solutions can include technology (e.g. iPads, ...more »

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Library Think Tank--Design, Function, and Future of Libraries

Library budgets and librarians have been cut drastically across the country, yet we know through a decade of studies that they have a significant improvement on student learning and achievement. A think tank on libraries of the future that also provides seed money for renovating libraries, infusing technology and good design into them, is needed. Much like the Robin Hood foundation is doing in New York City, the best ...more »

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Maximizing Thinking and Project Time: Flipping the Classroom

Real time collaboration, conversation and engagement with other learners in person and in one place provides support for putting ideas into action and creating evidence of learning. Asynchronous online reading, writing and thinking time then provides the flexibility for learners to consider new ideas and make connections of new information to what they already know- flexibly, at their own pace, when they are feeling ...more »

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Learn from other countries.

A comprehensive survey of what other countries are doing to take advantage of technology to advance learning would be a great contribution. Too often, we in the U.S. limit our vision to what's going on here. We need to look beyond our own borders to see what models and solutions are out there that we might appropriate and build upon.

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Leveraging Virtual Professional Development

How can we expand opportunities and awareness of virtual professional development to all educators? How do we develop empowered and "highly connected teachers", a concept often referred to by the DoE's Karen Cator? Tech savvy educators are leveraging Web 2.0 tools to build personal learning networks which support their interests and professional development needs (see Steve Hargadon's Classroom 2.0 site for example: ...more »

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Connect Classrooms Globally

Technology now gives our educators and students the opportunity to learn with the world, not just about it. The challenge: how do we help empower a new generation of young citizens who are aware of and comfortable with interaction with peers worldwide when most schools do not have the flexibility to pursue such connections? The education community and private sector companies have identified global awareness, ability ...more »

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Student Engagement through Authentic Simulations

Our curriculum is fragmented and NCLB increases the focus on subject-specific content. Our students are left less-engaged in a school day that seem disconnected from the real world, and the real-world skills they will need as adults.

Tech simulations/games can engage students in holistic and authentic environments. Can we develop these so that they also allow teachers integrate content, stressed by NCLB?

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Use technology for performance assessment.

Performance assessment is a powerful way to measure the acquisition of skill as opposed to knowledge. The high cost of implementing performance assessment (e.g. senior projects, writing assessments) has limited its use. Digital Promise could support work to advance applications of technology in performance assessment that could bring costs down.

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Leveling the Playing Field

If the "at risk" portions of our population continue to lack access to learning technologies, the opportunity gap in our country could soon become dangerously wide. We must find innovative ways to work together to ensure the most "at-risk" portions of our population have access to state of the art digital learning tools.

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