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Posts tagged education

Morning Roundup: Amazon officially launches Kindle Unlimited. Sherlock Holmes rights battle
July 18, 2014 | 9:00 am

Basil Rathbone as Sherlock HolmesHow I Became a Knausgaard Truther (Pacific Standard) Did companies in Norway institute Knausgaard-free days in response to the popularity of Karl Ove Knausgaard’s autobiographical novel My Struggle? It’s a question that led to a search for proof that something never happened. *** Amazon Officially Launches Kindle Unlimited eBook and Audio Subscription Service for $9.99 a month (GigaOM) The service is only available in the U.S. for now. About 640,000 titles are available, the bulk of them from Amazon’s own publishing imprints or by self-published authors who’d previously enrolled their books in Kindle Select. *** Sherlock Holmes and the Battle Over Literary Rights (The Telegraph) Setback...

Authors add pressure on UK government over school libraries
July 16, 2014 | 12:35 pm

school librariesDozens of British authors and others have written an open letter to the UK Department of Education calling for action in the wake of a report from the Libraries All Party Parliamentary Group, entitled The Beating Heart of the School, urging that the Department should supervise proper standards of services in school libraries. “Every secondary school in the UK should have a good library” declared the report. Published in The Guardian, the letter states: We – authors and illustrators, teachers, librarians, parents and others – are keen that this recommendation does not just become another piece of wishful thinking, and call on the Department...

FCC reallocates, reduces funding for schools and libraries internet access
July 16, 2014 | 10:24 am

fcc_thumb.gifThe U.S. Federal Communications Commission has just passed a new proposal for reallocation of resources in its program for support for internet and telecoms access for schools and libraries. However, the proposal has attracted strong and partisan criticism from both Republican and Democrat quarters, as well as independent institutions, and saw its target funding cut from $5 billion to $2 billion for the period 2016 to 2018. According to the FCC's own introduction, "the schools and libraries universal service support program, commonly known as the E-rate program, helps schools and libraries to obtain affordable telecommunications services, broadband Internet access and internal...

UK rejoices as Gove goes
July 15, 2014 | 4:22 pm

mr-gove-cover Good news for UK teachers, pupils, readers - and incidentally, fans of American literature. Michael Gove, the much-despised UK Education Secretary dismissed by Professor Simon Schama at last year's Hay Festival for his "insulting, offensive" attitudes, and by author Patrick Ness as "appalling, ignorant and damaging" and "massive, arrogant egotist who can’t see anyone else’s opinion,"  has been moved to a new post as Chief Whip, in charge of internal discipline for the UK Conservative Party in the House of Commons, as part of a cabinet reshuffle by Prime Minister David Cameron. According to David Cameron's official Twitter feed, "Michael Gove...

Reading aloud to children, on screens or from books, is vital
June 30, 2014 | 2:25 pm

reading aloud to childrenRudy Shur, publisher and CEO of Square One in New York, and a respected veteran of the American book industry, told me the other day that he was delighted to read a New York Times article recently about the AAP (American Academy of Pedriatrics) releasing a statement endorsing the practice of reading aloud to babies. Why? Because one of his firm's authors, the late Glenn Doman, published a book 50 years ago that said the same thing when he was director of The Institutes for the Achievement for Human Potential. "It's very rewarding to watch the scientific community catch up to...

How are eReaders affecting our children?
June 30, 2014 | 12:25 pm

ereadersBy Miles Young Those of us who have been around for a while continue to marvel at the way mobile technology is rapidly becoming a part of everyday life. For today's young children, however, smartphones and tablets are as basic and intuitive as the household refrigerator. Parents and teachers alike are asking themselves: what role do e-readers have on today's learning reader? One of the reasons it is difficult to reach a conclusion is because there are several factors to consider, including age, platform, and whether the child is reading alone or with a parent. It is also important to note that...

The argument against content filters
June 27, 2014 | 3:28 pm

Mom and daughter turning page in children's book on iPad 2An article in today's Morning Links on how internet filters limit children's learning had me nodding in agreement as I read. I have not seen content filters at my own school limit kids per se---when given free reign, they tend to go on the same half-dozen familiar sites and they seldom go exploring. But I have seen them limit teachers who are trying to prep activities. And I think they teach a certain kind of supervisory laziness that does nobody any favours. Let's start with the cludginess aspect. I don't know what my boss has put into the content filters, other...

Morning Roundup: Internet filtering limits students. Hugo memberships still available
June 27, 2014 | 9:00 am

internet filteringHugo Membership: The Best Way to Spend $42.34 (Book Riot) You are about to learn about a secret way to buy 5 great books at once, along with 5 novellas, 5 novellettes, 4 short stories and a heap of magazines and artwork, for just $42.34*. *** Amazon Introduces Four New Kindle Worlds From Romance Novelists (The Digital Reader) Four romance authors are now inviting submissions from writers, including Barbara Freethy, Bella Andre, H.M. Ward, and Lucy Kevin. *** US Publishing Industry Earned $27.01B in Net Revenues Last Year (GalleyCat) The US book publishing industry generated $27.01 billion in net revenue in 2013, selling 2.59 billion units, according...

High school reading 2.0
June 23, 2014 | 4:25 pm

reading on a tabletI've been sitting on this fabulous post from Book Riot for a few days because I wasn't sure I was smart enough to respond to it. The several contributors, all Book Riot regulars, pose an intriguing question: what contemporary books would you add to the high school reading curriculum to round out the classics-laden choices being taught already? As a book-lover---and a teacher---I have struggled at times with the question of what the high school English curriculum should do. I was horrified when my then-16-year-old brother told me his class had foregone the original Shakespeare in favour of a graphic novel...

Morning Roundup: Google Play Books in Norway but without local titles. Amazon’s dramatic shift and more
June 18, 2014 | 9:00 am

Google Play Books logoGoogle Play Books May Have Launched in Norway, But You Can't Find Norwegian Books There (The Digital Reader) Google may have launched a local Play Books store in Norway a couple weeks ago but they did so without few local titles. *** Amazon's Dramatic Shift (Futurebook) Amazon is seeking a ‘dramatic’ shift in terms, according to Hachette Livre chief executive Arnaud Nourry. *** Teachers Surveyed on Using Games in the Classroom (Teachers with Apps) Although technology in the classroom is evolving from computers to tablets, a new survey from the Games and Learning Publishing Council highlights that the use of games in the classroom is becoming more...

Education, Back to Basics Style?
June 12, 2014 | 2:28 pm

educationI've posted a lot of articles this year about technology in education---my own school has iPads, MacBooks, SMARTboards and other gadgets, all of which we have a mandate to use as often as possible and integrate into our lessons. I have written at length about the difficulties we have upgrading and maintaining these technologies, training teachers to use them effectively, and deploying them to maximum effect with such a large group of kids. So it's been a little surprising---and bemusing---to me to see a groundswell lately in favour of a more back-to-basics style. It seems that more and more teachers are...

Cory Doctorow fights high school censorship with 200 copies of Little Brother
June 6, 2014 | 1:16 pm

littlebrotherOn BoingBoing, Cory Doctorow writes about a high school in Pensacola, Florida that had been scheduled to have his novel Little Brother in its summer reading program until the principal put his foot down. In an email conversation with Ms Griffith, the principal cited reviews that emphasized the book's positive view of questioning authority, lauding "hacker culture", and discussing sex and sexuality in passing. He mentioned that a parent had complained about profanity (there's no profanity in the book, though there's a reference to a swear word). In short, he made it clear that the...