As we begin another semester, how are our educational institutions preparing the next generation of leaders to deal with digital problems? One interesting trend is in STEM education. Over the past 40 years, the number of graduate students studying STEM has more than doubled to almost 700,000. Yet over that same time period, relatively little has been done to educate those students about the political, psychological, economic, social and ethical dimensions of their work.

New studies are beginning to quantify some of the risks inherent in social media and cellphone usage, with one study revealing that students were able to stay focused for only six minutes when tempted by distractions like their social media accounts, and another demonstrating that the mere presence of cellphones—even when turned off and stored away—reduced academic performance on a battery of math problems.

All children need to learn to read, and humans have been teaching one another basic literacy skills for hundreds of years. Surely, if there is one thing our schools need to know how to do well, it is to teach reading. But do they? As Emily Hanford shows in her latest must-listen documentary, the short answer is no. In fact, the reading problem has tremendous implications for how we should think about teacher training as a whole.

November 3-6, 2020 | Lancaster Marriott at Penn Square, Lancaster, Pa.

EMPOWER 2020 is Pennsylvania’s only out-of-school time conference DESIGNED TO BRIDGE LEARNING AND STEM ECOSYSTEMS and provide networking opportunities for all who work toward the successful future of our children and youth.

PSAYDN SEEKS HIGH-QUALITY, EFFECTIVE PRESENTATIONS addressing the latest research and promising practices in supporting children and youth success as well as continuing professional development for professionals.

DEADLINE: FRIDAY, October 18, 2019

PSAYDN’s STEM Ambassador Lisa Kovalchick recently trained educators from across the state on the CryptoClub curriculum at the Center for Schools and Communities. This curriculum teaches math concepts – grades 5-12 – through cryptography using puzzles and games. This training opportunity was made available through Governor Wolf’s PAsmart initiative.

A hands-on educational approach known as “playing the whole game” is taking root in schools that use project-based learning. The basic idea holds that students learn best when they understand the bigger picture and how the things they are learning fit into a larger whole. It draws inspiration from traditional afterschool undertakings such as drama, debate, sports and the like.

PSAYDN at Center for Schools and Communities
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