Posts Tagged "STEM"

New Product Review: ExploreLearning Gizmos

New Product Review: ExploreLearning Gizmos

Learning List recently reviewed ExploreLearning’s Gizmos. This supplemental, web-based product supports math and science instruction across grades 3-12. Instruction is inquiry-based. Gizmos are content-specific simulations and virtual manipulatives that provide students with dynamic, hands-on opportunities to explore math and science concepts in fun and meaningful ways.

Across grades, Gizmos are housed in searchable libraries for math and science. Libraries are structured by grade band (e.g. 3-5) and topic. The math library is broadly organized in topics that include: numbers and operations, algebra, geometry, measurement, and data analysis and probability. Each topic includes sub-topics with one or more content-specific simulations (e.g., estimation using a number line). Each sub-topic Gizmo has a short overview of the simulation, learning objectives, a list of new vocabulary, and feedback from the Gizmos’ user community. [Read more…]

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Reviewed: STEMscopes by Accelerate Learning


[Source: Accelerate Learning]

STEMscopes is a comprehensive, vertically-aligned, online science curriculum focused on the development of STEM skills (i.e., Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) while addressing 100% of the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) science standards for grades K-12. Student materials are available in downloadable PDFs and in consumable texts. Learning List has reviewed the full line of K-12 STEMscopes materials, as well as the pre-K Early Explorer material.

Content is organized using the 5E instructional model: (1) Engage, (2) Explore, (3) Explain, (4) Elaborate, and (5) Evaluate. Writing activities are embedded throughout the curriculum, and instruction includes explicit connections to STEM subjects as well as careers in STEM fields. STEMscopes is a highly visual program that supports English language learners and struggling readers. Content is continually updated to reflect current science knowledge, best practices, and user-requested components (there is no charge for updates).

Embedded videos provide teachers with on-time guidance in implementing hands-on investigations and activities. The STEMscopes website includes alignment resources as well as a “Teacher Toolbox” to support planning across grade levels.


[Source: Accelerate Learning]

About Accelerate Learning*

Accelerate Learning, in conjunction with Rice University, is the creator of STEMscopes, a pre-K -12 STEM solution that address state standards, NGSS, and pre-K objectives across 3 unique curriculums. Backed by a “for teachers, by teachers” philosophy and a network of professional development resources (, Accelerate Learning is here to propel STEM into the 21st century. Affordable for schools, engaging for students, and easy to use for teachers, STEMscopes drives student achievement at an unprecedented level.

*The content in this section is provided by or adapted from the Accelerate Learning LinkedIn page.

Subscribe to Learning List for access to full editorial reviews, alignment reports and spec sheets.

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New Reviews: CORD Communications “Learning in Context” Math Series

[Source: CORD Communications]

[Source: CORD Communications]

CORD Communications’ “Learning in Context” program for high school math instruction provides courses for Algebra I, Geometry, and Algebra II in print and digital formats. Across courses, instruction focuses on providing the real-world context for learning mathematics and supporting students’ retention of content.

[Source: CORD Communications]

[Source: CORD Communications]

Each course relies on the “Contextual Learning” instructional model which is built around five strategies abbreviated in the acronym REACT:

  • Relating. Connect content to what students have previously learned
  • Experiencing. Teacher-led instruction and hands-on learning experiences
  • Applying. Solve real-world problems
  • Cooperating. Collaborative learning activities
  • Transferring. Application of skills to new situations and contexts

Courses highlight the application of mathematics in STEM-based careers and include a feature titled “Why should I learn this?” that explains how math is used the workplace (e.g., Opticians use real numbers to classify the curvature of optical lenses).  Instruction includes “Math Application” activities that present multi-step, workplace-related problems. Courses also include lab activities in which students solve hands-on problems using graphing calculators and critical thinking skills.

Teacher editions include pacing guides for blocks of 50-minute periods, strategies for implementing the REACT model, and guidance for in-class assignments and homework. Point-of-use resources include teaching notes, answer keys, and references to related content in ancillary materials.

[Source: CORD Communications]

[Source: CORD Communications]

About CORD: CORD Communications serves the educational market by providing quality products and services designed to improve student achievement by integrating active learning into academic and career and technology classrooms. CORD Communications strives to empower educators to implement contextual learning in the classroom. CORD Communications is affiliated with CORD, the leading educational change agency, and accomplishes its purpose by marketing and disseminating programs developed by CORD and others [Source: CORD Communications].

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Funding Update: Siemens STEM Opportunities for Teachers, Summer 2014

Siemens STEM Academy is accepting applications for its Siemens STEM Institute and Siemens Teachers as Researchers (STARS) programs through February 4, 2014.  Both programs are opportunities for middle school and high school STEM teachers to participate in all-expense-paid professional development activities in summer 2014.

The Siemens STEM Institute accepts fifty educators, or STEM Fellows, to attend a week-long institute hosted by Discovery Education, located outside of Washington, D.C.  According to Siemens, “The week will be filled with guest speakers, field trips to leading institutions where Fellows will observe real-world applications of STEM subject matter, and networking opportunities with like-minded peers from across the nation.”  For more information about Institute eligibility and application requirements, click here.

The STARS program selects two groups of 20 educators to participate in a two-week professional development program held at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee.  Selected educators work in teams with scientists and researchers on short-term projects at the laboratory and participate in seminars, workshops, tours, and field trips.  Participating educators receive a $500 stipend and a $300 mini-grant for the purchase of classroom equipment and supplies. For information about STARS eligibility and application requirements, click here.

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Grants and Funding Update

As a means to support educators in identifying resources that will meet their students’ needs, Learning List provides periodic updates about grants and funding opportunities focused on improving education. Today’s post highlights some opportunities that are currently accepting applications and proposals.

Emerging Teacher Leaders

The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics is providing grants of up to $6,000 to support the development of emerging teacher leaders in PK-5 mathematics. Grant recipients must have the support of campus principals and are expected to provide ongoing professional development focused on improving instructional practice and the understanding of mathematics in the elementary school classroom. Grants are limited to one teacher per campus.  Application packets must be postmarked by November 8, 2013. More information is available here.

Improvements for At-Risk Youth

The Interactive Intelligence Foundation is providing grants ranging from $5,000 to $20,000 for projects that foster life improvements for at-risk youth up to age 18.  Greater weight is given to projects that address STEM (i.e., science, technology, engineering, and math), as well as projects with clearly defined implementation periods and measurable outcomes.  Grant requests are due November 15, 2013. More information about the Foundation’s program is available here.

California Gardening

The California Fertilizer Foundation is providing 24 grants of $1,200 to support garden-related projects in public and private schools in California.  Grant applications are due January 15, 2014.  Application materials are available here.


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