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Especially with the rise in initiatives to create more opportunities for social emotional learning in schools, empathy is a hot topic in education. From video games to VR experiences asking individuals to step into the shoes of others, educators formally and informally, in kindergarten and in hig...
Project Torino, powered by Microsoft, has created an accessible coding curriculum called Code Jumper. This physical programming language is designed to enable visually impaired children to learn the basics of coding, the idea being that once students have a feel for how programming works using physical tools, they can translate those skills to the digital realm. Its creators...
Physics 123 is a course taught at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign that aims to provide student teachers with hands-on experience and knowledge of science. It started with what they saw as a deficit in scientific knowledge among elementary education student teachers. This class provides that foundational understanding and guides students through hands-on lab experiments that translate well to an elementary classroom environment. For examp...
Carrie Shaw became a caregiver when her mother was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s. She found that creating tools that caregivers could use to experience the world the way her mother did enhanced their empathy and responsiveness. She began to imagine how to use technology to take medical staff inside the perspective of a patient with Alzheimer’s. The Beatriz Lab is a virtual reality (VR) training tool that allows users to experience Be...
Recent neuroscience findings highlight the malleability of the human brain. Relationships and experiences drive the neurological development that is a necessary precondition for learning. This means that trauma can impede children’s ability to learn, but also indicates the potential positive effect that school relationships and experiences can have on enabling and promoting brain development. When teachers intentionally combine social-emotion...
Birmingham Covington School in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan is committed to supporting student inquiry and research. To encourage this, the school offers an elective called the Thinkering Studio, which allows students to select their own learning project and manage themselves throughout the process. Ideas for projects range from learning to play the ukulele to creating a Youtube channel for DIY videos. The teacher doesn’t tell students what t...
John Spencer is an educator who loves digital technology and is excited about its potential for learning. However, he wants to remind teachers and learners that vintage tools have value, too. While digital tools can open new possibilities for creating and collaborating, such capacities don’t replace the value of working with one’s own hands and communicating with live peers. What is your most memorable hands-on learning experience? How do you...
Daphna Shohamy, a neuroscientist at Columbia University, has made an interesting discovery about the teenage brain. She designed an experiment in which she scanned the brains of adults and teenagers as they played a competitive digital game. One result was that the teenagers outperformed the adults in the game. This finding came as no surprise, since the part of the brain that seeks rewards is very active in teenagers. However, the teenagers were also ...
While the advent of 3D printing has led to important advancements in many fields, this technology has found particularly intriguing uses in paleontology. From the American Museum of Natural History to the movie Jurassic World, 3D-printed dinosaur bones have come to play an important role ...
Sculptures always tell a story, but thanks to technology, a piece of art in Dublin, California is able to do so with the voices of its story's main characters. A 150-foot-long bronze sculpture in this city pays homage to a spring that was responsible for sustaining the Native American tribe indigenous to Dublin as well as the settlers who established Dublin. The sculpture also pays homage to language; it is embedded with the harmonic pattern of voices ...