Desktop Research: Challenges and Trends

The initial listing of news clippings was culled from a variety of sources we monitor on a regular basis.

We'd love to see your clippings here as well! Please use the edit this page button to add more, or add comments on how or why you think they may or may not be important. As is the convention throughout the Horizon Project Wiki, we ask you to identify items you think are of high interest to us, as I have done here by typing 4 tilde (~) characters-- - Larry Larry Feb 7, 2012. This will help us to sift through the articles and determine which ones resonate most strongly with the board as a whole.

Recommended Reading

  • Adaptive Learning: The Best Approaches We've Seen So Far
    With positive results coming in for many of the companies producing adaptive learning tools, the growth isn't likely to stop soon. So who are some of the key players? Here, in no particular order, are 10 companies and partnerships offering some of the best approaches adaptive learning.- cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Jan 18, 2014This is a great article to show different approaches to adaptive learning, which is truly a growing trend, especially as the technology matures and the content is available. Too bad it's still mostly in English. We have some organizations now working in developing Portuguese platforms as well. - michael.lambert michael.lambert Jan 18, 2014 Great article to explore and learn. Will push one to think down-the-road. - claus.gregersen claus.gregersen Jan 19, 2014The concept could make a substantial contribution to part of the learning process. Agreed- Sam Sam Jan 21, 2014 - mrskeeler mrskeeler Jan 23, 2014 I see this coming for K12
  • Are Personalized Learning Environments the Next Wave of K-12 Education Reform?
    School districts may be more likely to receive Race to the Top - District (RTT-D) grants if their plans include implementing blended learning environments, individualized learning plans, competency-based models, and community involvement, according to an issue paper released by the American Institutes for Research. - claus.gregersen claus.gregersen Jan 19, 2014 Personalization and differentiation is definitely part of the K12-agenda. - mrskeeler mrskeeler Jan 23, 2014 agree. I agree - lindsay.julie lindsay.julie Jan 27, 2014
  • Blending High and Low - Tech Worlds with a Maker-Drive Agenda
    In this interview, Kylie Peppler, an Assistant Professor in the Learning Science Program at Indiana University in Bloomington describes the grassroots nature of the Maker movement and what social and educational implications it has for 21st century learners.- cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Jan 18, 2014The Maker movement is a growing trend. It is great to have an organized movement because then individualized initiatives like we had at our school for years can now tie in to something more global and bring in more significance.
  • Blended Learning: A Disruptive Innovation
    This page is a wonderful reference on “blended learning” and what it means in real and virtual classrooms. it points to many examples of specific schools and projects as well as visuals to help illustrate the ideas.- cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Jan 18, 2014Great summary of a very important and growing trend. - michael.lambert michael.lambert Jan 18, 2014 Seems we're in search for the 'right combination/blend'. Is it 20/80, 40/60, etc. I do think 'experience-in-the-field' or simulations need to be part of the blend…not just online and in class time. - claus.gregersen claus.gregersen Jan 19, 2014 Yes an ongoing discussion and research topic. - davidwdeeds davidwdeeds Jan 21, 2014 Necessity is the mother...well, you know. We had to start a blended course because we couldn't find a full-time teacher. Using Haiku ( to teach the IB Sports Exercise and Health Science class. Now we're looking at other blended courses to teach languages such as Japanese and Chinese. - mrskeeler mrskeeler Jan 23, 2014 Without question blended learning is coming. Page was down when I tried to access this but blended learning is here and a must for all levels of K-12 - lindsay.julie lindsay.julie Jan 27, 2014
  • Bored to Death: To Learn Just How Bored Kids Are in School, Look at Twitter
    Today, kids broadcast their boredom live, all day long, on multiple platforms in every conceivable medium. The author argues that It’s important to remember this boredom. Otherwise, adults can build fictional schools in their heads, places where time behaves normally, where one can go to the bathroom without asking permission. - davidwdeeds davidwdeeds Jan 21, 2014 Got some justification this past week. Students completed a survey on extracurricular activities and 75% of their ideas involved technology. One of our most technophobic teachers finally asked me what I'm doing since mine seems to be the only class kids are excited about:
  • Building Technology Fluency: Preparing Students to be Digital Learners
    This articles lays out three strategies for building technology fluency in a way that is well-rounded, transcending devices, apps and programs.- cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Jan 18, 2014Great tips for good practice and pedagogical transformation. - mrskeeler mrskeeler Jan 23, 2014 This is in the common core, hard to say it is not important. Fluency in digital learning leads naturally to problem solving and student leadership - lindsay.julie lindsay.julie Jan 27, 2014
  • Choose Your Own Adventure: Edtech in Low-Income Community Schools
    One of the challenges many inner-city school teachers face is trying to differentiate to a wide range of students at a variety of levels and competencies. Elementary teacher Tim Jones at Brentwood Academy in East Palo Alto, California discusses how he tries, tests, and picks technologies in a way that maximises capacity of limited technology.- cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Jan 18, 2014These tips are important since so many schools don't have a good budget for technology, which should not be a limitation. This is one way to work around that.
  • Classrooms Embracing Social Media
    As K-12 schools in Northwest Indiana in Porter County embark on their computer take-home program for students, district administrators are embracing social media and BYOD in the classroom, as well as the idea of certifying students to repair devices, a skill that would increase their employability after high school.- cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Jan 18, 2014Social media is becoming more and more a part of the classroom and the activities. We should continue to embrace it and use it for good educational practices. - claus.gregersen claus.gregersen Jan 19, 2014 We also see more and more integration of social media in the classroom. - davidwdeeds davidwdeeds Jan 21, 2014 Seems the more we introduce technology, the more teachers, administrators and parents worry about kids using social media. Cyberbullying is the latest concern: If anyone's got any suggestions for putting their minds at ease, I'd love to hear them.
  • Cloud Computing in K-12 Expands, Raising Data Privacy Concerns bobmoore bobmoore Jan 20, 2014
  • The use of cloud-based technologies in K-12 schools is becoming increasingly complex and expansive, prompting a wide range of approaches for protecting private student data stored in the "cloud" and raising serious concerns about the security of such data.- cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Jan 18, 2014Important challenge that cannot be ignored. This question always arises when we talk about cloud computing. - claus.gregersen claus.gregersen Jan 19, 2014 Who owns the data and what are they used for are absolutely serious questions. - davidwdeeds davidwdeeds Jan 21, 2014 Cloud computing has been one of the easiest sells at my school, simply because of its potential for saving money. When it's privacy or pesos, pesos win. - mrskeeler mrskeeler Jan 23, 2014 Cloud computing is big, look at the adoption of chromebooks in K12
  • Connected Learning: An Agenda for Social Change
    This article by Mimi Ito for the Huffington Post brings to light the importance of technology in connecting us for learning purposes.- cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Jan 18, 2014This article brings another important trend - tapping in to the informal learning spaces and paths students take. I like that it states connected learning is agnostic and asks what is the optimal experience - lindsay.julie lindsay.julie Jan 27, 2014
  • Digital Reading on the Rise for Children (With a Qualifier)
    Though digital reading is rising fast among children between 6 and 17 years of age, a report released by Scholastic shows that general reading habits, and the amount of books read are declining because though children may read a few digital books with their devices, they are more likely to be more interested in social networking or playing games.- cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Jan 18, 2014Good idea to look at the advantages and setbacks of digital reading since it is also becoming more widely used in the classroom. - claus.gregersen claus.gregersen Jan 19, 2014Reason to be concerned and to investigate further.
  • How Teachers Can Best Use Tech
    This article proposes four keys to helping schools maximize the educational opportunities that new technologies provide including identifying an educational problem and deciding whether a new technology can address it. - claus.gregersen claus.gregersen Jan 19, 2014Important stuff – not all inventions will lead to improved performances of the students.
  • Invisible Technology: Visible Benefits in the Classroom
    With the prevalence of mobile devices in the classroom, Simon Hay explains that it's only a matter of time before ubiquitous computing becomes a reality in education.- cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Jan 18, 2014It is happening fast. At least in the private schools in Brazil. Public schools still have a ways to go. - mrskeeler mrskeeler Jan 23, 2014 An extremely rural school I was at where they did have tech was allowing for student devices, it is not a fringe idea anymore
  • It Is Not About the Gadgets – Why Every Teacher Should Have to Integrate Tech Into Their Classroom
    Students have often more seamlessly integrated technology into their lives than their teachers and didn’t even need to take a class on it. We chalk this up to them being digital natives or because they have an interest in it. Yet not all children are digital natives and most of them have had role models that show how to use the technology. - davidwdeeds davidwdeeds Jan 21, 2014 One of the biggest ironies is that in schools (like IB) with separate IT/Computer classes, other teachers feel they're "off the hook" re: using technology. I'm deliberately switching to a school with no distinct IT/Computer classes because the expectation is that ALL teachers use technology, not just the IT/Computer teachers. - davidwdeeds davidwdeeds Jan 21, 2014 Even the IB is switching from Technology to Design Technology, but not for this reason. It's because they can't find enough IT/Computer teachers! mtaylor mtaylor Jan 21, 2014Hopefully technology will go the same way as literacy and numeracy and become embedded in subjects. Note: the IB has moved from Design Technology to Design. A significant step in recognising a more holistic approach to teaching technology. - mrskeeler mrskeeler Jan 23, 2014 While teachers are complaining, this is the reality.
  • Is K–12 Blended Learning Disruptive? An Introduction of the Theory of Hybrids
    The Clayton Christensen Institute, formerly Innosight Institute, has published three papers describing the rise of K−12 blended learning (formal education programs that combine online learning and brick-and-mortar schools). This fourth paper is the first to analyze blended learning through the lens of disruptive innovation theory to help people anticipate and plan for the likely effects of blended learning on the classrooms of today and schools of tomorrow.- cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Jan 18, 2014Christensen has been a big reference for us in our efforts to innovate. This paper is great.
  • Khan Academy, Coursera Founders Define Ed Tech’s 5 Biggest Challenges
    Andrew Ng, the co-founder of Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) provider Coursera and Salman Khan, the founder of nonprofit online education provider Khan Academy, cover major challenges in education technology from technological accessibility to subjects not-well-suited for online learning. Those challenges are outlined here.
  • Lakeville Looks at Doing More with Online Learning
    Schools are more and more interested in online learning, but the reason for it is because they can get more funding if they are able to incorporate home-schoolers as students in their district. This can likely lead to many jumping into online learning initiatives without really studying what aspects of online learning work and don't work and how to incorporate it with in-school initiatives. - mrskeeler mrskeeler Jan 23, 2014 I have seen this popping up all over the place
  • Local School Launches App Class
    Kilgour Elementary School has partnered with Northern Kentucky University to design and carry out an after school program that will teach 20 to 25 students in grades 1-6 to make a smartphone app using an MIT programming tool called "App Inventor."- cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Jan 18, 2014This is another great way to teach not only technology, but entrepreneurship. - mrskeeler mrskeeler Jan 23, 2014 It is easy to use and Google is making a big push into Education, students creating apps is going to become more popular.
  • Los Angeles Library To Offer High School Diplomas
    The Los Angeles Public Library announced that it is teaming up with a private online learning company to debut a program that offers residents the opportunity to get an accredited high school diploma.- cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Jan 18, 2014Libraries have to reinvent themselves as well, and this use of its space is a great idea.
  • McAllen ESD Distributes 22,000 Mobile Devices to Students and Teachers
    As part of the challenge-based learning initiative, McAllen district has taken measures to ensure that every teacher and student has access to a mobile device. McAllen has partnered with Atomic Learning to facilitate the transition to mobile technology.
  • Most Ed-Tech Startups Suck!
    This article argues that most edtech startups don’t base their products on research and actually talking to teachers about what they need, and lists some steps to take in order to truly demonstrate the effectiveness of your product.- cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Jan 18, 2014This article reflects exactly how I feel every time a startup comes to show us their great idea! Great recommendation! - mrskeeler mrskeeler Jan 23, 2014 Everytime I talk to a start up company it is usually not a teacher, thus their products do not quite fit.
  • Philadelphia, A Laboratory For Hybrid Schools
    Philadelphia became a laboratory for what many considered a hybrid school system - one made up of independently run, autonomous schools and the other pretty traditional schools. Now fast-forward to today, and what we have found is that that has not really saved the city or the state any money.
  • Schools Set Boundaries for Use of Students' Digital Devices
    BYOD has revamped curriculum within Forsyth County, Ga. schools in a way that a 1-to-1 computing program would not have done. When students bring an array of devices, the teachers are forced to really change their strategy. If students all have the same device, oftentimes teachers just keep their methods the same, using the new technology where it can fit, but not really trying new things with their strategy and curriculum.- cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Jan 18, 2014This article reflects perfectly our views and where we're going at our school. He could have been talking about us. - claus.gregersen claus.gregersen Jan 19, 2014Also same situation in our schools. - mrskeeler mrskeeler Jan 23, 2014 That is what I like about BYOD, forces the teacher to focus less on the assignment and more on the learning objective. BYOD is taking off.
  • Schools Take Comprehensive Approach to Mobility
    The Indian River School District in Selbyville, Delaware has found a way to allow students and teachers to drive the educational decisions, not the IT department.
  • Science Education In The U.S. Is Mediocre. Here’s What We Can Do To Fix It
    For most students, the study of science is still an exercise in memorization and regurgitation. We are not developing science-literate citizens or encouraging future scientists.- cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Jan 18, 2014This is valid for all subjects!
  • Secretary of Education Denies Charters to Cyber Charter School Applicants for 2013-14 School Year
    Secretary of Education Ron Tomalis has denied eight cyber charter school applications for the 2013-14 school year, noting that a fundamental difference exists between brick-and-mortar and cyber charter schools. He cited significant deficiencies in curriculum, finance and overall operations of the cyber schools. - mrskeeler mrskeeler Jan 23, 2014 I see a movement to demand higher quality online education, the sandbox has been played in, time to start thinking real pedagogy and that online is not "only" for highly motivated students who can get past the bad design.
  • Student Created Content is an Exciting and Inspiring Learning Tool that Teaches Many Skills
    When students create content, they are learning more than just technical skills by concurrently developing literacy skills, communications skills, presentations skills, and building confidence to take control of their learning and harness their creativity. - mrskeeler mrskeeler Jan 23, 2014 Especially as schools are ditching textbooks... student content is on the rise.
  • 10 Ways to Teach Innovation
    There are a number of ways that teachers can bypass the system and offer students the tools and experiences that spur an innovative mindset. Here are ten ideas.- cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Jan 18, 2014I would add on to this list Tony Wagner's Creating Innovators reference -
  • Using MOOCs to Revitalize University Engagement with K-12
    Funding is low and teachers are being laid off or not replaced, with the result that class sizes are again growing. This article argues that MOOCs offer an opportunity to revitalize the relationship between public universities and the K-12 sector. Universities could work with K-12 institutions to develop multimedia resources to fill the gaps in traditional education.- cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Jan 18, 2014I don't know if MOOCs would be the best solution here, but I am all for partnering K12 and universities. - davidwdeeds davidwdeeds Jan 21, 2014 MOOCs are at the forefront of the online learning backlash. Why do you think?
  • When Computers Are Co-Teachers
    While there are no firm statistics on how many schools use blended learning, education researchers say more than 4 million elementary through high school students participated in some kind of learning online in 2010, a number that has continued to grow since. - mrskeeler mrskeeler Jan 23, 2014 Teachers need to focus on the DO with the information. Computers support this by allowing for the rote.
  • When Teachers Unlock the Dungeon
    The first 2013 Education Technology Innovation Summit (ETIS) took place July 25th in New York City with opening keynote being the principle of New Milford High School in New jersey who originally banned technology from school four years ago, but has now turned the high school into a spotlight example of how a public high school can foster a bring-your-own-devices policy--and support social media--all while increasing student achievement. The author covers other notable themes from the conference as well.- cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos~Nice overview of important topics that have been covered in all the articles. - mrskeeler mrskeeler Jan 23, 2014 important
  • Virtual Schools Under Microscope of Tennessee Lawmakers
    After students of Tennessee Virtual Academy are not testing well. “A mere 16 percent of K12’s Tennessee students were proficient in math.” - cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Jan 18, 2014This link doesn't work. - davidwdeeds davidwdeeds Jan 21, 2014 Here it is: Yes, this backlash against online learning is a big problem, folks. I have two online degress. Just finished a job search and I had potential employers scoffing. Is this just a matter of public relations or does something need to change? - mrskeeler mrskeeler Jan 23, 2014 a call for quality online that is engaging and offers more choices is coming.
  • How Students Benefit From Using Social Media cristiana.mattos cristiana.mattos Jan 18, 2014Link not opening. - davidwdeeds davidwdeeds Jan 21, 2014 Here it is: Yeah, tried these arguments. Didn't manage to convince anyone. - mrskeeler mrskeeler Jan 23, 2014 Just getting kids using tech is the focus, some teachers are using SM but it is a fringe.
  • Less about the technology more about the space - mtaylor mtaylor Jan 21, 2014 Steven Heppell is beginning to help us understand that today's technologies work better in less traditional classrooms designs. - mrskeeler mrskeeler Jan 23, 2014 Classroom design is changing, need to adapt to the new tools and tasks students are doing.
  • Its not the Apple TV but the concept mtaylor mtaylor Jan 22, 2014 Products akin to the Apple TV will/are transforming learning spaces. With the increasing proportion of schools taking up tablets/ipads etc every student being able to stream to a projector/screen is valuable. The HDMI cable (whilst more problematic to support than VGA) adds the dimension of clean sound. Watch out for student device management softwares flooding the market ala Apple Remote Desktop but cheaper. - mrskeeler mrskeeler Jan 23, 2014 agree the moving of the teacher away from the front of the room, apple tv opens that possibility