The T in STEM

by Beth Knittle on November 12, 2017

A couple of weeks ago the New York Times had article Where the STEM jobs Are (and Where They Aren’t).  As a former science teacher and now a technology specialist I am acutely aware the difference between the S in STEM and the T.  Even the T takes on multiple meanings.  Engineering technology and Computer Science related technology. I have noticed as many grants come out to support STEM and schools announce their renewed focus on STEM there is not much being done about adding new computer science and information technology into the curriculum.  Schools enhance existing science,  engineering/technology classes or add resources to maker spaces.  Don’t get me wrong I am excited to see these improve and expand opportunities to more students but I have not seen a real increase in CS and IT offerings.

The largest demands for STEM related jobs in CS. Burning glass shows a high demand for these jobs in MA. The growth of K12 education in these fields has declined in the last decades ,my assumptions are this is due to the increase in high stakes testing. Now as in all things education we will cycle back around refocus on CS.  Massachusetts released DL and CS standards in 2016 and there will be a content teaching license for DL & CS grades 5-12 available this December. Now that the foundation is laid (frameworks and license) I hope courses will begin to be built and added to school curriculums. We do our students a disservice in not preparing them for a fast growing segment of the STEM economy.


On to MassCUE

by Beth Knittle on October 10, 2016

It has been one heck of a roller coaster start to the school year. Lots of new tech to deploy, PD to develop not to mention new state standards to integrate and the likely hood of licensing changes.  It is a lot to take in.

But October is here and things tend to get into a rhythm and it is time to connect with others and indulge in some personal learning.  I look forward to attending MassCUE our stated premier conference in technology and learning.  I always learn something an connecting with others not only inspires but put things in perspective.  If you are in the area I highly recommend attending the conference, it is well worth the effort.


Pokemon Go or Gone?

by Beth Knittle on July 31, 2016

As many of you know Pokemon Go was all the rage the last few weeks.  I don’t normally play games but thought I would give it a try and was enjoying playing with my young adult children.  It got us out of the house and doing something together, it was more a side note to our family outings. Steve Dembo has a good post summing up initial thoughts on Pokemon go.  It was fun. Today as a result of the update many users are all back to zero.  Twitter and  Facebook are full of people complaining about the reset and loss of items and money.

It will be interesting to see how Niantic responds to this. So far no word on the issue, if they made $35 million the first two weeks, and about $1.6 million a day from iPhone users how will they handle all the money and items people lost if the issue is not resolved? Do they refund people? Do they just figure people will start again?

As noted in the article about Pokemon revenue the game was beginning to lose players. How many more will it now loose as a result of this issue, even if it was not intended and the issue resolved?  As a watcher and teacher of technology what lessons might the consumer learn or other game companies from this “glitch.”  It will be interesting to see what happens over the next few days.

UPDATE:  Pokemongo support has posted a fix for some users, though not sure how this helps those who only have one gmail account and still have issues.

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Adding Computer Science into the Curriculum

July 26, 2016

This June the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education formally adopted new Digital Literacy and Computer Science Curriculum Frameworks.  A good portion of the digital literacy frameworks overlap with the literacy standards regarding research, analysis of information, collaboration and presentations.  These standards place added emphasis on these skills and the tech tools needed to […]

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Learning, Schools and a Great Big World

July 13, 2016

For those of you who have been regular readers you know I struggle with traditional schooling and how it confines and limits learning. I have raised two children who were interested in computers, gaming, digital art, ancient languages, ancient arts and mythologies, topics not part of most school curriculum.  A good deal of their learning […]

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School is Out, Time to Play

June 21, 2016

School is out for the summer and now it is time to play. For me it is time to finally give this blog an overhaul.  I will be switching themes to Divi and creating from the ground up.  Change is never smooth for me so the site might go back and forth in styles and […]

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Summer Break?

May 31, 2016

When I was a classroom teacher I looked forward to summer break.  I was able to close out one school year, leave myself a ton of reminders for the start of the next and was ready to turn my mind and body to other pursuits. I could come back fresh, excited and eager to dive […]

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