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EdTech Action Network

Today I ran across this wonderful site, EdTech Action Network, that is working to remind our leaders of the importance of educational technology. They have posted the following letter on the front page of their site. You can help out by signing the petition for giving our kids a 21st century education. Please take a minute (that is truly all it takes) to sign this petition. I am assuming that if you are reading a technology in education blog such as this one that you have discovered the importance of technology in education. I love the motto on the EdTech Action Network’s site “Children + Technology = America’s Future” I couldn’t agree more! “Dear Next President, We believe that it is critical that our next President make ensuring our nation’s K-12 students receive a 21st Century Education a top priority. Recent data shows that the stakes for our students acquiring 21st Century technology skills and knowledge have never been higher in terms of their own and our nation’s economic prosperity. For instance: The Department of Labor reports that out of 55 industries, education is last in its use of technology. In the majority of schools, teachers and students cannot maximize the potential of technology. By 2010, if current trends continue, more than 90 percent of all scientists and engineers will be living in Asia. Since the 1960s, the demand for skills has changed significantly – the demand for routine manual task skills have decreased, while the demand for non-routine interactive task skills have increased significantly. Our children not only deserve but require an American education that harnesses the power of technology to individualize learning, one that ensures that they are prepared to compete academically for top grades and globally for the best paying jobs. In our estimation, a 21st Century Education should include the following elements: Every student learning in an environment that reflects the technology replete world in which we live, including ready access to sophisticated computing devices, instructionally sound digital content that facilitates self-paced learning, and broadband-level bandwidth necessary to support cutting-edge digital applications and services. Every teacher possessing the technology tools and skills necessary to use technology in the classroom and to integrate technology and digital resources seamlessly into classroom learning. Every parent utilizing technology to monitor student academic progress, communicate with educators regarding academic matters, and access online and digital resources to assist their children’s studies. We call on the next President, in partnership with Congress, to take these bold steps to ensure a 21st Century Education, including: Supporting access for all students to technology and the Internet. Increasing federal funding for education technology through the Department of Education’s budget. Preserving the E-Rate and providing robust bandwith in all classrooms to allow students and educators to use the cutting-edge digital applications and services. Incorporating technology literacy and facility into state teacher standards, teacher training, and professional development. Encouraging student technology literacy by the eighth grade.” Click here to sign the petition nowOh by the way, they have a great url: onegiantleapforkids.org- how fun is that?!

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Student Freelance: connecting talented students with employers for freelance work

Posted by admin | Posted in Apply, collaboration, Middle/High School, Subject, Teacher Resources, Web2.0 | Posted on 27-06-2013

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Student Freelance via iLearn Technology

What it is:  Student Freelance aims to connect talented American educated students (sorry, for now this is US only) with employers who want to utilize those talents.  Students get an opportunity to put their talents and passions to work while earning money, gaining experience, and making connections with others in their fields of interest.  Employers win because they get a cost-effective solution and the opportunity to scale up.  The added benefit is the apprenticeship opportunity that exists here.

How to integrate Student Freelance into the classroom: If your students are anything like ours, they are wildly talented and passionate.  They continue to amaze me with the ways that they push themselves to learn in areas of passion.  I’ve had several students ask if I could connect them with someone at Google or Pixar so they can start putting their skills to work. :)  While I don’t always have that ability, I can now point them to Student Freelance.  This offers students the ability to share their skills and passions with the world, while becoming contributing citizens now.  It is also a great opportunity for your students to begin building up an authentic work-experience portfolio while they are still in school as learners.

Jobs are listed by areas of skill expertise and passion.  The opportunity can be a freelance job on location, or in some cases, a freelance job that they can complete from anywhere in the US by connecting online.

I’m looking through all of the freelance offerings of students and wondering…could schools utilize these students as a sort of adjunct teacher/mentor for students at their own school?  This could be a cool way to support students and make valuable connections.

Tips:  Spread the word to local businesses that Student Freelance is an option!  I’m not sure most business owners would know to look here.  It is a great mission to support!

Are you using Student Freelance?  Share your experience in the comments below!

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