Are coding robots worth your kids' time?

December 02, 2019

Toy robots are nothing new. In the 1980s, the R2D2-like Tomy Verbot or the clunky Milton Bradley Big Trak let kids program their movements or actions using voice commands or a keypad. The marketing for those robots focused mostly on the fun -- and, in the case of the Big Trak, the ability to deliver an apple to your dad. These days, toy companies have a different message for parents as they hawk their coding toys: Your kids will have fun, but they’ll also be prepared for the jobs of the future.

College Costs Rise 112% Above Inflation over Past Four Years

November 27, 2019

The report revealed that the cost of university tuition has increased 8.3 percent in the past five years alone. In that same time, the cost of textbooks has increased a whopping 36.3 percent. This increase amounts to an additional $2,835 each year over what students paid in 2015. This increase amounts to 112 percent above the rate of inflation during this time period.

Teacher Leaders Are Working Together Online to Improve Schools, Effect Policy and Re-Envision the Future of STEM Teaching and Learning

November 26, 2019

TERC's STEM Teacher Leadership Network (, funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF), is inviting teacher leaders, aspiring teacher leaders, as well as researchers and administrators interested in effective school leadership, to join, view and interact with this new virtual learning community and collegial network. The free membership will provide access to networking tools, resources and interactive online events throughout the year to explore topics related to STEM teacher leadership.

How ed-tech can help leapfrog progress in education

November 26, 2019

Technology can help education leapfrog in a number of ways. It can provide individualized learning by tracking progress and personalizing activities to serve heterogeneous classrooms. It can support playful learning through approaches such as games. Technology allows students to collaborate and engage with peers in different parts of the world, and it offers platforms for data collection and analysis that lead to improvements in the broader education system.

Study: 'Family Structure' a Major Factor in Racial Disparities in School Conduct and Suspensions

November 24, 2019

A new study affirms what many public policy analysts say is intuitive -- that unstable family structure, including chaotic households and single-parent homes, is a primary factor in racial disparities in school behavior and suspensions.

Philanthropic Response to Opportunity Zones Remains Tepid

November 20, 2019

Investors have been undergoing regulatory uncertainty which, at this time, is still in place. “You have final rulemaking from (the) IRS expected before the end of this year,” Lettieri said. “Frankly, until that’s done, I think a good portion of the marketplace is going to sit on their hands, and not really start to move until they have all of their questions answered.” Specifically, he went on to say, investors are being asked to put their capital gain into “higher risk and less well-trodden areas. In many cases, places they’ve never invested before.” And, he added, investors are being asked to do so, without all the rules in place.

LEGO Education Increasing Its Interest In STEAM Learning

November 20, 2019

The transition from being a “big fish” at the end of elementary school to the role of a smaller fish in the expanded lake of middle and high school can be an emotional challenge. Students are feeling vulnerable and the effects of any perceived failure can seem magnified. The increase in negative emotions arises in subjects that have a reputation for being “hard,” most often falling into the “STEM” categories: science, technology, engineering, and math.

Boys and girls have an equal aptitude for math - so why are there are so few women in higher paying STEM jobs?

November 20, 2019

New research suggests that the gender gap in so-called STEM careers -- science, technology, engineering and mathematics -- may be more due to nurture than to nature. A study published in the peer-reviewed journal Science of Learning found that the brains of young boys and girls react the same to mathematics problems, and yet women make up 26% of people in computer and mathematical occupations, 21% of computer programmers and 16% of those in architecture and engineering, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The great STEM debate: States can't agree on what those four letters mean, and that's a problem

November 19, 2019

Anyone paying half-attention to schools knows about the acronym STEM: Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math, the four pillars supporting a career-ready future for students. There’s hardly another term in the education world that’s as commonly referenced. But when strung together, just what do those four letters -- or five if you’re observing National STEM/STEAM Day tomorrow -- actually mean?

13 Smart STEM Toys for the Techie Kids in Your Life

November 19, 2019

We found more than a dozen math-filled and science-rich toys for tiny nerds to disassemble, set on fire, and then rebuild.


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