From DSC:
This would be huge for all of our learning ecosystems, as the learning agents could remember where a particular student or employee is at in terms of their learning curve for a particular topic.


Say What? Chat With RTX Brings Custom Chatbot to NVIDIA RTX AI PCs — from blogs.nvidia.com
Tech demo gives anyone with an RTX GPU the power of a personalized GPT chatbot.



 

Healthcare High Schools — from the-job.beehiiv.com by Paul Fain
Bloomberg and hospitals back dual-enrollment path from K-12 to high-demand jobs.

More career exploration in high school is needed to help Americans make better-informed choices about their education and job options, experts agree. And serious, employer-backed efforts to tighten connections between school and work are likely to emerge first in healthcare, given the industry’s severe staffing woes.

A new $250M investment by Bloomberg Philanthropies could be an important step in this direction. The money will seed the creation of healthcare-focused high schools in 10 U.S. locations, with a plan to enroll 6K students who will graduate directly from the early-college high schools into high-demand healthcare jobs that pay family-sustaining wages.


Microschools Take Center Stage with New Opportunities for Learning for 2024 — from the74million.org by Andrew Campanella
Campanella: More than 27,000 schools and organizations are celebrating National School Choice Week. Yours can, too

Last year, the landscape of K-12 education transformed as a record-breaking 20 states expanded school choice options. However, that is not the only school choice story to come out of 2023. As the nation steps into 2024, a fresh emphasis on innovation has emerged, along with new options for families. This is particularly true within the realm of microschooling.

Microschooling is an education model that is small by design — typically with 15 or fewer students of varying ages per class. It fosters a personalized and community-centric approach to learning that is especially effective in addressing the unique educational needs of diverse student populations. Programs like Education Savings Accounts are helping to fuel these microschools.


My Students Can’t Meet Academic Standards Because the School Model No Longer Fits Them — from edsurge.com by Sachin Pandya

Large classes create more distractions for students who struggle to focus, and they inevitably get less attention and support as there are more students for teachers to work with. High numbers of students make it more difficult to plan for individual needs and force teachers to teach to an imaginary middle. A rigid schedule makes it easy to schedule adults and services, but it is a challenge for kids who need time to get engaged and prefer to keep working at a challenge once they are locked in.

Now that I know what can engage and motivate these students, I can imagine creating more opportunities that allow them to harness their talents and grow their skills and knowledge. But we’re already a third of the way through the school year, and my curriculum requires me to teach certain topics for certain lengths of time, which doesn’t leave room for many of the types of experiences these kids need. Soon, June will come and I’ll pass them along to the next teacher, who won’t know what I know and will need another four months to learn it, wasting valuable time in these students’ educations.

From DSC:
We need teachers and professors to be able to contribute to learners’ records. Each student can review and decide whether they want to allow access to other teachers– or even to employers. Educators could insert what they’ve found to work with a particular student, what passions/interests that student has, or what to avoid (if possible). For example, has this student undergone some trauma, and therefore trauma-informed teaching should be employed. 

IEPs could be a part of learners’ records/profiles. The teams working on implementing these IEP’s could share important, searchable information.


The State of Washington Embraces AI for Public Schools — from synthedia.substack.com by Bret Kinsella; via Tom Barrett
Educational institutions may be warming up to generative AI

Washington state issued new guidelines for K-12 public schools last week based on the principle of “embracing a human-centered approach to AI,” which also embraces the use of AI in the education process. The state’s Superintendent of Public Instruction, Chris Reykdal, commented in a letter accompanying the new guidelines:

 

Why Entrepreneurship Might Save Our Kids—and the Rest of Us. — from gettingsmart.com by Katie Kimbrell

Key Points (emphasis DSC):

  • We need to be asking our students “How did you put your ideas into the world today?”.
  • To be human is to be entrepreneurial.

One of my favorite mom friends asks her young school-aged kids every day, “What did you make today?”

I love how subtly subversive this question is. Not, “How was school today?” “Were you good today?” or, “How’s [insert school subject] going?” But, How did you put your ideas out into the world today?” 

That simple question understands this fundamental truth: to be human is to create, to employ our imaginations and partake in forming the world we want to live in.


Microschool in a Box: Programs Enabling the Microschool Movement — from gettingsmart.com by Nate McClennen

Key Points

  • Microschools are not new. In fact, they are as old as learning itself.
  • Funding and operations can be difficult within a microschool model. Programs and other organizations can support planning, design and implementation.

Microschools are meeting strong market demand for more personalized, more contextualized and more relevant learning for every student. Programs like ASU Prep’s Microschool in a Box make it possible for more learners to become future-ready with access to affordable, relational microschool learning.

Nate McClennen


The Science of Classroom Design — from edutopia.org by Youki Terada and Stephen Merrill
Our comprehensive, all-in, research-based look at the design of effective learning spaces.

Topics include:

  • Light
  • Ventilation and air quality
  • Complexity and color
  • Data walls
  • Nature, plants, and greenery
  • Representation
    • Students can experience representation in classrooms by seeing their own or peers’ artifacts on walls and in shared virtual spaces, or by being exposed to images and references that mirror their interests, passions, and backgrounds.
  • Flexibility
  • Learning differences and neurodivergence
  • Heat
  • Acoustics/noise
  • Seating arrangements
  • Learning Zones

Addendum on 12/1/23:

 

Where a developing, new kind of learning ecosystem is likely headed [Christian]

From DSC:
As I’ve long stated on the Learning from the Living [Class]Room vision, we are heading toward a new AI-empowered learning platform — where humans play a critically important role in making this new learning ecosystem work.

Along these lines, I ran into this site out on X/Twitter. We’ll see how this unfolds, but it will be an interesting space to watch.

Project Chiron's vision: Our vision for education Every child will soon have a super-intelligent AI teacher by their side. We want to make sure they instill a love of learning in children.


From DSC:
This future learning platform will also focus on developing skills and competencies. Along those lines, see:

Scale for Skills-First — from the-job.beehiiv.com by Paul Fain
An ed-tech giant’s ambitious moves into digital credentialing and learner records.

A Digital Canvas for Skills
Instructure was a player in the skills and credentials space before its recent acquisition of Parchment, a digital transcript company. But that $800M move made many observers wonder if Instructure can develop digital records of skills that learners, colleges, and employers might actually use broadly.

Ultimately, he says, the CLR approach will allow students to bring these various learning types into a coherent format for employers.

Instructure seeks a leadership role in working with other organizations to establish common standards for credentials and learner records, to help create consistency. The company collaborates closely with 1EdTech. And last month it helped launch the 1EdTech TrustEd Microcredential Coalition, which aims to increase quality and trust in digital credentials.

Paul also links to 1EDTECH’s page regarding the Comprehensive Learning Record

 

“We need more high-impact learning practices in prison” — from college-inside.beehiiv.com by Charlotte West
Internships, apprenticeships, and work learning opportunities allow incarcerated students to keep learning after they graduate.

Maine and other states like Colorado are trying to tackle this issue through internships and employment opportunities that allow incarcerated students and graduates to put their professional knowledge and skills into practice — and in some cases, earn a living wage while doing so.

Employment and professional training opportunities inside were a major theme at the 2023 National Conference for Higher Education in Prison, where 800 educators, administrators, students and alumni from dozens of prison education programs gathered in Atlanta, Georgia last week.

 
 

Mark Zuckerberg: First Interview in the Metaverse | Lex Fridman Podcast #398


Photo-realistic avatars show future of Metaverse communication — from inavateonthenet.net

Mark Zuckerberg, CEO, Meta, took part in the first-ever Metaverse interview using photo-realistic virtual avatars, demonstrating the Metaverse’s capability for virtual communication.

Zuckerberg appeared on the Lex Fridman podcast, using scans of both Fridman and Zuckerberg to create realistic avatars instead of using a live video feed. A computer model of the avatar’s faces and bodies are put into a Codec, using a headset to send an encoded version of the avatar.

The interview explored the future of AI in the metaverse, as well as the Quest 3 headset and the future of humanity.


 

In Iowa, a “Billy Madison Project” Yields a Different Way to do School — from by Sam Chaltain
A great flood reveals a new path . . .

The idea was simple: ask sixty community leaders to fan across the city’s public schools, follow in the footsteps of its youngest citizens, and report back on what they saw.

Fifty-nine said yes. What they found, Pickering says, “were kids with dead eyes. Kids not engaged. And kids who knew that school was a game – and the game was rigged.”

So the Billy Madison team used its findings to design a prospective high school that would actually produce what its participants said they wanted to see: 

Let kids pursue their passions. Give them real work to do.  And get them out of the school building, and in the community. 

Passion. Projects. People.


How 9 of the World’s Most Innovative Schools Ignite Children’s Love for Learning — from learntrepreneurs.com by Eva Keffenheim
And equip the next generation to become changemakers.


This thought-provoking discussion delves into the topic of system replacement in education. Is school transformation possible without replacing the existing education system? Joining [Michael] to discuss the question are Thomas Arnett of the Christensen Institute and Kelly Young of Education Reimagined.

In an educational landscape that constantly seeks marginal improvements, [Michael’s] guests speak to the importance of embracing new value networks that support innovative approaches to learning. They bring to light the issue of programs that remain niche solutions, rather than robust, learner-centered alternatives. In exploring the concept of value networks, [Michael’s] guests challenge the notion of transforming individual schools or districts alone. They argue for the creation of a new value network to truly revolutionize the education system. Of course, they admit that achieving this is no small feat, as it requires a paradigm shift in mindset and a careful balance between innovation and existing structures. In this conversation, we wrestle with the full implications of their findings and more.

From DSC:
This reminds me of the importance of TrimTab Groups who invent or test out something new apart from the mothership.


Technology in education — from unesco.org by ; via Eva Keffenheim
A tool on whose terms?

The 2023 GEM Report on technology and education explores these debates, examining education challenges to which appropriate use of technology can offer solutions (access, equity and inclusion; quality; technology advancement; system management), while recognizing that many solutions proposed may also be detrimental.

The report also explores three system-wide conditions (access to technology, governance regulation, and teacher preparation) that need to be met for any technology in education to reach its full potential.



Campus Road Trip Diary: 8 Things We Learned This Year About America’s Most Innovative High Schools — from the74million.org by Greg Toppo & Emmeline Zhao

Since last spring, journalists at The 74 have been crossing the U.S. as part of our 2023 High School Road Trip. It has embraced both emerging and established high school models, taking us to 13 schools from Rhode Island to California, Arizona to South Carolina, and in between.

It has brought us face-to-face with innovation, with programs that promote everything from nursing to aerospace to maritime-themed careers.

At each school, educators seem to be asking one key question: What if we could start over and try something totally new?

What we’ve found represents just a small sample of the incredible diversity that U.S. high schools now offer, but we’re noticing a few striking similarities that educators in these schools, free to experiment with new models, now share. Here are the top eight:
.

Campus Road Trip Diary: 8 Things We Learned This Year About America’s Most Innovative High Schools

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Learners need: More voice. More choice. More control. -- this image was created by Daniel Christian

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Empowering Parents: School Choice and Technology — from obviouslythefuture.substack.com
Ep 2 | Joe Connor, Odyssey Education, ESAs, Streamlined Technology Platform, Informed Choices

What does it take to empower parents and decentralize schooling? Why is a diversity of school models important to parents? Are we at a tipping point?
.


PROOF POINTS: Lowering test anxiety in the classroom — from hechingerreport.org/ by Jill Barshay
Review of 24 studies finds quizzes boost achievement and alleviate stress over exams

Several meta-analyses, which summarize the evidence from many studies, have found higher achievement when students take quizzes instead of, say, reviewing notes or rereading a book chapter. “There’s decades and decades of research showing that taking practice tests will actually improve your learning,” said David Shanks, a professor of psychology and deputy dean of the Faculty of Brain Sciences at University College London.

Still, many students get overwhelmed during tests. Shanks and a team of four researchers wanted to find out whether quizzes exacerbate test anxiety.  The team collected 24 studies that measured students’ test anxiety and found that, on average, practice tests and quizzes not only improved academic achievement, but also ended up reducing test anxiety. Their meta-analysis was published in Educational Psychology Review in August 2023.


The End of Scantron Tests — from theatlantic.com by Matteo Wong
Machine-graded bubble sheets are the defining feature of American schools. Today’s kindergartners may never have to fill one out.


Benefits of Pretesting in the Classroom — from learningscientists.org by Cindy Nebel

There are several possible reasons why pretesting worked in this study.

  1. Students paid more attention to the pretested material during the lecture.
  2. The pretest activated prior knowledge (some of them are clearly doing a lot of prework), and allowed them to encode the new information more deeply.
  3. They were doing a lot of studying of the pretested information outside of class.
  4. There are some great spaced retrieval effects going on. That is, students saw the material before lecture, they took a quiz on it during the pretest, then later they reviewed or quizzed themselves on that same material again during self-study.

 

The out-of-this-world project redefining ‘edutainment’ — from inavateonthenet.net by Reece Webb

A new planetarium project in the UK has the potential to revolutionise education and entertainment. Reece Webb reports.

Many integrators will work on a career defining project, and for Amir Khosh, a new, one-of-a-kind planetarium project nestled in the heart of Nottinghamshire, UK, has sat at the centre of his world.

A project more than five years in the making, ST Engineering Antycip will be part of the large-scale developmemt that is the Sherwood Observatory, which aims to drive education enrichment and visitor attraction in marginalised communities.

A new planetarium project in the UK has the potential to revolutionise education and entertainment. Reece Webb reports.


Also from inavateonthenet.net, see:

Digital Projection paints a picture at Vincent meets Rembrandt exhibition

 

A First Look at Teaching Preferences since the Pandemic”— from library.educause.edu/ by Muscanell

2023 Faculty & Technology Report: A First Look at Teaching Preferences since the Pandemic

This is the first faculty research conducted by EDUCAUSE since 2019. Since then, the higher education landscape has been through a lot, including COVID-19, fluctuations in enrollment and public funding, and the rapid adoption of multiple instructional modalities and new technologies. In this report, we describe the findings of the research in four key areas:

  • Modality preferences and the impacts of teaching in non-preferred modes
  • Experiences teaching online and hybrid courses
  • Technology and digital availability of course components
  • Types of support needed and utilized for teaching

From DSC:
Polling the faculty members and getting their feedback is not as relevant and important to the future of higher education as better addressing the needs and wants of parents and students who are paying the bills. Asking faculty members what they want to post online is not as relevant as what students want and need to see online.


From DSC:
More fringe responses — versus overhauling pricing, updating curriculum, providing more opportunities to try out jobs before investing in a degree, and/or better rewarding those adjunct faculty members who are doing the majority of the teaching on many campuses.


Online college enrollment is on the rise: What brings students to virtual campuses? — from digitaljournal.com by Jill Jaracz and Emma Rubin; via GSV

Before the pandemic, online learning programs were typically for people going back to school to augment or change their career or pursuing a graduate degree to enhance their career while they work. That attitude is shifting as students juggle learning with jobs, family responsibilities, and commutes. In California, 4 in 5 community college classes were in person before the pandemic. By 2021, just 1 in 4 were in person, while 65% were online, according to the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office.

Younger students are also opting for online classes. EducationDynamics found in 2023 that the largest share of students pursuing undergraduate or graduate degrees online is 35 or younger. That said, 35% of students pursuing online undergraduate degrees are between


 

The Ready Player One Test: Systems for Personalized Learning — from gettingsmart.com by Dagan Bernstein

Key Points

  • The single narrative education system is no longer working.
  • Its main limitation is its inability to honor young people as the dynamic individuals that they are.
  • New models of teaching and learning need to be designed to center on the student, not the teacher.

When the opportunity arises to implement learning that uses immersive technology ask yourself if the learning you are designing passes the Ready Player One Test: 

  • Does it allow learners to immerse themselves in environments that would be too expensive or dangerous to experience otherwise?
  • Can the learning be personalized by the student?
  • Is it regenerative?
  • Does it allow for learning to happen non-linearly, at any time and place?
 

For many home-schoolers, parents are no longer doing the teaching — from washingtonpost.com by Laura Meckler; via Matthew Tower

Her program is part of a company called Prenda, which last year served about 2,000 students across several states. It connects home-school families with microschool leaders who host students, often in their homes. It’s like Airbnb for education, says Prenda’s CEO, because its website allows customers – in this case, parents – to enter their criteria, search and make a match.

An explosion of new options, including Prenda, has transformed home schooling in America. Demand is surging: Hundreds of thousands of children have begun home schooling in the last three years, an unprecedented spike that generated a huge new market. In New Hampshire, for instance, the number of home-schoolers doubled during the pandemic, and even today it remains 40 percent above pre-covid totals.

From DSC:
This is another great example of the morphing going on in the PreK-12 learning ecosystem.

 

Building Pre-K Students’ Skills to Codesign the Classroom — from edutopia.org by Sarika S. Gupta
In order to help ensure that young students’ needs are met, it’s important to seek feedback about their learning experiences.

VIEW CHILDREN AS ACTIVE LEADERS IN THEIR LEARNING
I was co-teaching in an inclusive preschool classroom 20 years ago when I led my first professional development workshop (the project approach). The aim was to show teachers that children could co-construct their learning experiences when they were invited to do so. Two groundbreaking Reggio Emilia books came to mind—Shoe and Meter and Everything Has a Shadow Except Ants. These inspirational books were part of a series published in collaboration with the Italian Ministry of Education called “The Unheard Voice of Children.”

The series recognized children as active leaders of their learning and endeavored to document the process of learning through children’s learning experiences.

Learners need: More voice. More choice. More control. -- this image was created by Daniel Christian

Let Kids Make Decisions — from edutopia.org by Sean Cassel
An overreliance on rules can backfire. Instead, teachers can focus on providing students with choices and teaching good decision-making skills.

I’ve deeply thought about that last part over the course of my career: Let kids make decisions. Twenty years later, I am a high school administrator tasked with enforcing rules every day. Let me be clear: Schools need rules to function, but they don’t have to be the focus. My school focuses on allowing students to make choices: It is a centerpiece of how we operate. And although kids don’t always make the right choices, often enough they do. An overreliance on rules, in either a classroom or an entire school, can limit the ability of students to grow and develop their decision-making skills.

Using Free Edtech Tools to Get to Know Your New Middle and High School Students — from edutopia.org by Matthew X. Joseph
Older students can use these tools to introduce themselves to their teachers and each other—even before school starts.

From DSC:
Some nice ideas and tools listed here to start developing relationships even before the first day of school.

An Intentional Approach to Improving Your Teaching Practice — from edutopia.org by Marcus Luther
By selecting one area for growth, collecting resources, and connecting with others, teachers can make meaningful improvements in the classroom.

Last summer, my focus was improving the level of inquiry in my classroom. I describe my process below, which transfers to any area or topic on which you might hope to focus your own professional learning.

Setting Up Libraries to Be the Best Space in School — from edutopia.org by Paige Tutt
We took a peek inside school libraries across America to see how librarians are reframing the space to support students’ social, emotional, and creative growth—while still prioritizing excellent reads.

The recently renovated library—now known as the Learning Commons—is a bright, spacious multipurpose hub within the school. There are bistro tables where kids can work together; comfortable and flexible seating; a makerspace where students can explore activities like sewing and jewelry making; an audio recording and production studio; and a video production studio where kids can create TikToks or YouTube videos using their phones or school-issued laptops. It’s a far cry from the space it used to be—an attendance sheet from 2008 tracked just 21 students signing into the library one day.

 

Will one of our future learning ecosystems look like a Discord server type of service? [Christian]

 

The Changing Landscape of Online Education (CHLOE), 2023
Student Demand Moves Higher Ed Toward a Multi-Modal Future

The majority of survey participants report increased student demand for online and hybrid learning juxtaposed with decreased demand for face-to-face courses and programs. Most participants also say that their institutions are aligning or working to align their strategic priorities to meet this demand. Notable findings from the 50+-page report include:

  • Face-to-Face enrollment is stagnant or declining.
  • Online and hybrid enrollment is growing.
  • Institutions are quickly aligning their strategic priorities to meet online/hybrid student demand.
  • “Quiet” quality assurance.

 
© 2024 | Daniel Christian