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Week of: August 20, 2007 Social Networking Rules with Tweens and Teens A remarkable 96% of students with online access report that they have used some form of social networking technology, according to a new study from the National School Boards Association. School To Use Video for
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Week of: August 20, 2007

  • Social Networking Rules with Tweens and Teens
    A remarkable 96% of students with online access report that they have used some form of social networking technology, according to a new study from the National School Boards Association.
  • School To Use Video for Classroom Observations
    Not only will classrooms at India Hook Elementary School be equipped with the latest technology tools, but parents and administrators will also be able to watch classroom activities streamed live to an observation room.
  • KS District Completes District Wide Laptop Integration
    Administrators of Ellis USD in Hays, KS marked the final year of their five year technology plan by passing out laptop computers to each of the 140 students enrolled at Ellis High School.
  • Technology Camp for Girls
    Camp Infinity, sponsored by the Michigan Council of Women in Technology Foundation is designed to spark girls' interest in technology and open doors to potential careers.
  • Paper Batteries
    Researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have developed a battery prototype that looks like a piece of paper and can be bent, cut, twisted or molded into any shape.

Social Networking Rules with Tweens and Teens

A remarkable 96% of students with online access report that they have ever used some form of social networking technology, according to a new study from the National School Boards Association. That includes activities such as text messaging, chatting and blogging as well as participating in online communities such as Facebook or sites designed specifically for younger children, such as Webkins. More than 70% say that they use social networking tools at least once a week. The 9-to 17-year-olds surveyed spent almost as much time using social networking services and Web sites as they spent watching television, about 9 hours a week online, compared to 10 hours a week watching television. And unlike TV, these teens and tweens are behaving creatively when online, uploading photos or artwork they have created or videos they have made. And it's not just all music and video sharing. Nearly 60% of online students report discussing education-related topics such as college or college planning, learning outside of school, and careers. And 50%of online students say they talk specifically about schoolwork. The report, "Creating & Connecting: Research and Guidelines on Online Social and Educational Networking," is based on three surveys: an online survey of nearly 1,300 9- to 17-year-olds, an online survey of more than 1,000 parents, and telephone interviews with 250 school districts leaders who make decisions on Internet policy.

Source:National School Boards Association

School To Use Video for Classroom Observations

Not only will classrooms at India Hook Elementary School be equipped with the latest technology tools, but parents and administrators will also be able to watch classroom activities streamed live to an observation room. Officials in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools believe that India Hook is the only school in the district so equipped. India Hook's principal says the cameras and video streaming will be used as a teaching tool. Plans call for teachers to use the observation area at least once a month to watch other teachers' techniques. Teachers will be notified when their classrooms are being observed. No recordings of the classroom activity will be made or archived. The observation room is the icing on a major technology upgrade for India Hook, part of a district wide effort to infuse technology into all of its classrooms. The district's goal is to put an interactive white board with a projector, a laptop and a sound system in every classroom. India Hook will also have a computer lab and a mobile cart equipped with 20 wireless computers. District classrooms have computers, but plans call for moving away from in-classroom computers to mobile laptop carts. Each teachers at India Hook will also have a laptop, facilitating planning for activities that will make us of the interactive white boards. The building also has a small TV studio that fifth graders will use to broadcast morning announcements.

Source:Charlotte Observer

KS District Completes District Wide Laptop Integration

Administrators of the Ellis Unified School District in Hays, KS marked the final year of their five year technology plan by passing out laptop computers to each of the 140 students enrolled at Ellis High School. The plan kicked off in 2003 with a grant from the Kansas Department of Education for grades four through six. The gradual integration of laptops means that there are now enough laptops on mobile carts for the 130-some students in grades four through eight at Washington Elementary School. Grades K-3 also will have use of about 30 laptops on carts. The district moved slowly and prepared carefully for the high school laptop program. Classrooms have been prepared to accommodate teaching with computers. All classrooms are now equipped with mounted projectors and new tables have been ordered for some rooms. A new course in multimedia has been added to the curriculum. All last year district staff participated in the Intel Teach To The Future training, a program that focuses on how to integrate technology into the classroom. District leaders know they will face some problems as they move forward, but feel well prepared to deal with them. To head off the most obvious problems, parents and students receiving laptops participated in an orientation, learning about their fiscal responsibility and the various rules they would be expected to abide by, such as appropriate use of the Internet.

Source:Hays Daily News

Technology Camp for Girls

Camp Infinity, sponsored by the Michigan Council of Women in Technology Foundation and hosted by Lawrence Tech is designed to spark girls' interest in technology and open doors to a potential career. The camp is targeted to girls in grades 4-7, the grades where girls' interest in math, science and technology begins to wane. Girls attending the camp are exposed to many different forms of technology and get to hear about careers in technology and science from local women who are working in the field. This year the girls designed their own web sites and learned to program robots. The girls work in teams and are encouraged to experiment and be creative. The camp doesn't advertise, but this year 60 girls were on the waiting list. Selection is based on criteria such as age, grade in school and knowledge of computers, and is on a first-come, first-served basis. The camp is free, supported by grants from corporate sponsors. Organizers say that they have two goals - showing girls that they can do it and that technology and science are fun and encouraging girls to consider careers in the technology industry, where women are underrepresented.

Source:Detroit Free Press

Paper Batteries

Researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have developed a battery prototype that looks like a piece of paper and can be bent, cut, twisted or molded into any shape. While the prototype is only a few inches square, the scientists hope one day to be able to scale it and print the batteries like a newspaper. The battery uses paper infused with an electrolyte and carbon nanotubes that are embedded in the paper. The carbon nanotubes form the electrodes, the paper is the separator and the electrolyte allows the current to flow. Observers point out that nanotubes are very expensive, so making large sheets of this material could be cost prohibitive. The potential of the new battery is its flexibility; it could be rolled into a film or a sheet.

Source:Wired News

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