Few people will be surprised to learn of research that shows K-12 institutions throughout the United States have become heavily dependent on technology, and that this dependency continues to increase with each passing year. What may surprise even the most jaded among us, however, is that, given that many view this a "good" dependency with a wealth of immediate and long-term benefits for teachers, students, and staff, we're doing an inadequate job of feeding the habit.
- By Scott Aronowitz
Former middle school teacher Luke Allen offers his recommendations for the best free software for teachers, from social Web browsers to image and video editing and manipulation tools.
PBS will develop achievement-oriented content especially for the New York City Department of Education's School of One (So1) with the help of a $500,000 grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. School of One is an experiment in personalizing education using multiple modalities of instruction, allowing students to learn at their own pace and according to their own respective strengths and weaknesses.
- By Scott Aronowitz
Ed tech adoption isn't about forcing new technologies on teachers or wearing them down in an effort to obtain grudging "buy in." On the contrary. In order for any technology-centered education initiative to have meaningful results, according to Rushton Hurley, it has to be born of a spirit of collegiality, teamwork, and openness.
Middle school and high school students have an opportunity to receive mentoring and funding for their digital filmmaking projects. The Adobe Foundation and PBS have teamed up to launch Project VoiceScape, which will select 15 documentary works to support with cash, publicity, and one-to-one guidance from professional filmmakers.
Adobe revealed that it will end development on Project Rome, the company's experimental multimedia authoring and electronic portfolio tool, redirecting its development resources instead to tablet applications.
Quark has released QuarkXPress 8.5, an update to the company's professional page layout and design tool.
PBS Newshour is expanding a mentoring program it began last year to connect students with news professionals in public broadcasting, a program that's tied in with the students' schools through a curriculum focusing on media literacy and digital media production.
Telestream has released Wirecast 4.0, an update to the company's cross-platform, live Webcasting production suite. In its latest incarnation, Wirecast adds a Pro version to the lineup, offering enhanced graphics capabilities and expanded camera support.
Adobe has launched a new multimedia authoring tool for education. Dubbed Project Rome, the hosted service (also available as a desktop AIR app) went into public preview Sunday morning. Adobe said it's looking for schools to participate in pilot programs using the software, especially those schools that have adopted Google's Apps for Education or the open source learning management system Moodle.