Renascence School Education News - private school

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Teens and tech: what happens when students give up smartphones?

The Guardian – Erin Cotter

“A recent report by Childwise found that children aged five to 16 spend an average of six and a half hours a day in front of a screen, more than twice as much as they did 20 years ago…So what happens when you ask a group of tech-loving teens to switch off for a week?…Was it hard? Yes. But impossible? No. Most who took up the challenge found it less difficult than they expected, suggesting the relationship they have with their devices is less addictive than compulsive. More importantly, all of them said they got something out of it. “I watched TV with my friends,” says one. “I read a book. I can’t remember the last time I did that,” adds another. “I got my homework in on time and hung out much more with my family.” They also reported going to bed earlier – a related and growing area of concern.”(more)

Saturday, April 11, 2015

More Black, Latino Teens Say They’re Online ‘Almost Constantly’

NPR –
Ariana Tobin

“While phones seem poised to hit a full saturation point across the board, there are meaningful differences in how various demographics use them. Among African-American teens, Pew says 34 percent report going online “almost constantly,” as do 32 percent of Hispanic teens, but only 19 percent of white teens say they go online that often. And while African-American teens are most likely to have access to a smartphone, they’re have somewhat less access to a desktop or laptop computer at home. Katie Naoum, a middle school English teacher at South Bronx Prep, was one of the dozens of teachers who surveyed her students for a New Tech City project exploring some of those differences. Her classes are for the most part African-American or Hispanic, and the South Bronx is one of the poorest districts in the country. While everyone in her class has a cell phone — most have iPhones — not all have home computers.”(more)

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

In Congress, New Attention To Student-Privacy Fears

NPR – Anya Kamenetz

“Several efforts in Washington are converging on the sensitive question of how best to safeguard the information software programs are gathering on students. A proposed Student Digital Privacy and Parental Rights Act of 2015 is circulating in draft form. It has bipartisan sponsorship from Democratic Rep. Jared S. Polis of Colorado and Republican Rep. Luke Messer of Indiana. Drafted with White House input, the bill joins a previous Senate proposal, plus much action on the state level, from regulators, and from industry and other sector leaders. Consumer groups like Common Sense Media and companies like Microsoft have spoken positively of the bill. But some student-privacy advocates are saying it doesn’t go far enough in restricting what private companies can do with student data. “It is a start to try to get at a very complex issue,” says Elana Zeide, an expert on student privacy at the Information Law Institute of New York University, who saw an earlier draft of the bill. “But it’s not going to satisfy a lot of parent advocates, because it leaves a lot of discretion to schools and companies.” Mike Goldstein, who works with education clients at the law firm Cooley, says there’s been an “explosion” of interest in privacy issues over the past five years. Technological advances have schools and universities outsourcing many more basic functions than in years past. Everything from grade books to tests to entire academic programs, he adds, is being handled by third-party, for-profit providers.”(more)

Thursday, March 12, 2015

When Combating the Bully, Our Hands Aren’t Tied

The Huffington Post – Lain Hensley

“As a part of growing up, most of us have experienced bullying either directly or indirectly. And despite our efforts to build awareness, today bullying still persists. As a society, we have to not only work to eradicate bullying, but also to prepare children for it. Like animals in the jungle, if somebody is weak, they get picked on so another can assert dominance. And the sad truth is, the behavior kids face today is at a new high, or low, depending how you measure it. Thanks to the Internet, cyber bullying is a whole new outlet for kids to attack the weakest members of the social herd outside the classroom. So how can we, as adults, combat this critical issue? As it turns out, we’re not as powerless as we might at times feel. Here are a few steps we can take.”(more)

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Unhealthy, excessive tech use affecting kids’ health

The Times of India – Staff Writer

” Instances of conflicts between parents and their tech-obsessed wards, poor social interaction and worsening of basic skills are some of the consequences of addiction to and excessive use of technology among children in India, experts warn. And it is not just a child health issue but a public health concern as well, National Indian Public Health Association President J. Ravi Kumar said. “Technologies like the internet, smartphones and electronic gadgets like gaming consoles, tablets and the like are essential for development, but the side-effects of overuse is a concern for public health,” Ravi Kumar told IANS. He said this has brought to the fore the importance for parents to be aware of the extent to which they themselves spend time on gadgets. “Children tend to follow what their elders do. So when they see parents working for long hours on their laptops, they are bound to get influenced. “This, in turn, results in conflicts: when parents try to limit their children’s exposure to electronic devices, they are smart enough to question why the elders are tinkering with their laptops so much,” Ravi Kumar said.”(more)

Friday, February 13, 2015

UK Survey Shows One in Seven Kids Participate in Online Bullying

Education News – Kristin Decarr

“A new survey has found that one fifth of secondary students have taken part in online bullying, with teenage boys being more likely to have done so than girls. The survey, released in conjunction with Safer Internet Day, also discovered three in ten secondary students have witnessed something online that has either concerned, upset or frightened them…A separate report was also released at the same time by Action for Children. Research for their study found that 60% of students who admitted to online bullying said they did so in order to fit in with a social group, and 43% said they did so in order to prevent themselves from being bullied online. Other reasons for online bullying included peer pressure and feeling unhappy.”(more)

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Gaming Can Give Troubled Teens Another Shot At Learning

Forbes – Nick Morrison

“Students who get turned off by education can struggle to see the point of schools, but one project is showing how gaming can give troubled teens another shot at learning. Games developer Kuato has already won plaudits for its work in schools, where students have to learn basic code to take a robot through an adventure/shoot-em-up game…But in a new departure, Kuato has gone into a school for students who struggle to engage with mainstream education, to see if coding can give them a reason to learn…the results suggest that creating games does have the power to switch students back on to education.”(more)

New Poster: 15 Useful Tips to Help Students Overcome Procrastination

Educational Technology and Mobile Learning – Med Kharbach

“Keeping focused and on task in a world where multiple sources of distraction are at work competing for ones’ attention is really a challenging endeavour. And when it comes to students and digital natives the case is even worse. I sometimes think that we, digital immigrants, are really lucky to have studied in an era where the hype of Internet and social media was non existent. However, procrastination does not have a sole cause and digital preoccupation is only one factor among many that lead to this state of inaction. The visual below features 15 interesting and scientifically-backed strategies that students can use to beat procrastination.”(more)

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Many ‘children taking risks online’

BBC – Staff Writer

“More than half of children in the UK (57%) have done something “risky” or anti-social online, a poll of 2,000 11- to 16-year-olds suggests. Almost two-thirds (62%) told the BBC Learning poll they felt under pressure from others to act in this way. Activities included sharing unsuitable videos or pictures of themselves or saying nasty things about others and looking at unsuitable websites. Some 20% said they had put pressure on someone else to act negatively online. The research was commissioned as part of a new online safety campaign – Be Smart – timed to coincide with Internet Safety Day on 10 February.”(more)

FCC’s plan to reclassify internet has big K-12 impact

E-School News – Bridget McCrea

“FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler is proposing clear, sustainable, enforceable rules to preserve and protect the open Internet as a place for innovation and free expression. According to an FCC Fact Sheet the common-sense proposal would replace, strengthen, and supplement FCC rules struck down by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit more than one year ago. “An open Internet allows consumers to access the legal content and applications that they choose online, without interference from their broadband network provider,” the fact sheet states. “It fosters innovation and competition by ensuring that new products and services developed by entrepreneurs aren’t blocked or throttled by Internet service providers putting their own profits above the public interest. An open Internet allows free expression to blossom without fear of an Internet provider acting as a gatekeeper. And it gives innovators predictable rules of the road to deliver new products and services online.” Evan Marwell, CEO of San Francisco-based EducationSuperHighway, says Chairman Wheeler’s proposals to protect the open internet include one key provision that will be very helpful to any school district or library that is working to bring fiber to their buildings. That is, by “ensuring fair access to poles and conduits under section 224,” the proposed rules will make it much simpler and more cost effective for school districts to obtain the rights of way they will need for fiber construction.”(more)