November, 2011

  • Celebrating Teacher Heroes

    The Microsoft Partners in Learning 2011 Global Forum wrapped-up last week with a bang. A lovely Gala Awards dinner in the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery. A fitting venue to conclude an energizing week with educators from around the world. The...
  • Interesting Links 14 November 2011

    I spent a lot of time watching the Twitter feed and reading blog posts about the Microsoft Global Forum last week. And some watching the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing as well. A good number of this week’s links are to posts related to the Global Forum. Let’s start with post event reflections from three attendees who were there in different roles. Lee Kolbert (@ TeachAKidd ) was one of the judges: What's in Your Heart? My Reflections as a Judge From The Microsoft Global Forum Johnny Kissko ( @ johnnyeducation ) is a teacher who represented the US at the Global Forum. Reflections...
  • Computer Science As Cross Curricula

    Initially I was going to write about how well computer science related projects did at the recent Microsoft Partners in Learning Global Forum. After all Louis Zulli won a first prize for Cutting-Edge Use of Microsoft Technology for Learning . And the “ When Fish Fly ” project won for Collaboration . And those are computer science related projects. And Doug Bergman’s computer science was another of the US based projects that was there. (Note I wrote about CS at the Global Forum last week). But then I read Doug Peterson’s excellent recap of his experiences and observations from the Global Forum ...
  • Imagine Cup US 2012: The Process

    Written by Megan Benjamin You may have seen the call to sign up for Imagine Cup US 2012 ! And if you’ve checked out the site, chances are you’ve at least started imagining a world where technology helps solve the world’s toughest problems—so why not make your ideas reality? Between the big brainstorming sessions, project planning, coding, and revisions, there are a few crucial steps, dates, and deadlines to keep in mind. To make your life just a little simpler, here are the steps in the Imagine Cup process, all in one place. Step 1: Sign up at www.imaginecup.us...
  • Partners in Learning Global Forum–A Reflection in Pictures

    The fourth and final day of the Partners in Learning 2011 Global Forum is nearing its end. We will go on tonight to the Gala Awards Dinner at the National Portrait Gallery and 18 educators will receive Global Innovative Educators Awards. The week has...
  • Computer Science at the Microsoft Global Forum

    This week Microsoft is hosting over 700 innovative teachers from around the world in Washington DC at the Microsoft Partners in Learning Global Forum . Unfortunately I’m not there. I really am disappointed. I was totally inspired by the US version that selected the teachers from the US who would attend the Global Forum. I met many inspiring teachers and would have liked to have seen some of them again and met more great teacher from around the world. I do have friends there though and I am all following events via Twitter , blogs, and the virtual press room . Speaking of blogs, Doug Peterson wrote...
  • Celebrating the world's most innovative & inspiring teachers

    I’m excited to be in Washington, D.C. this week among more than 700 of the most talented educators and school leaders from around the world at the 7th annual Partners in Learning Global Forum . This is one of my favorite weeks every year at Microsoft...
  • Sec. of Ed. Arne Duncan visits with US educators and throws a fish!

    This morning Sec. of Education Arne Duncan stopped by the Microsoft Partners in Learning Global Forum today to make a joint announcement with Microsoft about the migration of the U.S. Dept. of Ed teach.gov web resource to Microsoft, which will lead a...
  • Introduction Webcast Recordings

    Where were you? Did you miss out on our first two free webcasts all about Live@edu? Fear not! You can download and listen again to the recordings any time you like, as well as viewing the slides again – check out the slideshow below (embedded directly...
  • Python, Visual Studio and Kinect

    Python is rapidly growing in popularity in academia. Last week Microsoft announced  Python Tools for Visual Studio – an open source (Apache) and free plug-in that turns Visual Studio into a world-class Python development environment.   Plus now there is : PyKinect , which enables writing Kinect games using Python! The PyKinect sample is a wrapper around the Kinect SDK and enables development with the Kinect SDK directly from Python. The library presents an API which is similar to the API exposed via the Kinect SDK for C# developers. The sample includes a new template for quickly...
  • You Can Judge A Book By Its Sensors

    Whether through pop-up books, textured art, enhanced audio pages, or scratch-n-sniff photos, writers have been attempting to engage our senses more fully when reading. Now, the emergence of low-costs sensors will enable reading to be deeply engaging. Related posts: Windows 7 Opens the Way to “Real” Electronic Textbook Adoption Developer Jobs for America with Windows 8 The Stage Is Set…Mice…Cameras….Action ...read more
  • Welcoming a World of Innovation in Education

    Guest post from Lauren Woodman, General Manager of Worldwide Partners in Learning. This week, we are celebrating educators from all over the world at the 7th annual Partners in Learning Global Forum in Washington, DC. This event brings more than 700...
  • 12 educators to represent the U.S. at the Partners in Learning Global Forum

    Today, 12 U.S. educators, along with 103 educators from across the globe meet in Washington, DC for the 7th annual Microsoft Partners in Learning Global Forum. The Partners in Learning Global Forum is a celebration of innovative teaching practices and...
  • A few customer questions about Office 365

      These are a few questions from a university in Washington state looking to move faculty, staff and students to Office 365: Can I have an AD domain of university.local  and use Federated ID (Single Sign On) with Office 365? Yes, provided you...
  • Interesting Links 7 November 2011

    Andrew Parsons has written an amazingly complete blog post about Create and publish your own Tower Defense game for Windows Phone 7. It you want one place to send a student for a “how to” this is the place. For high school students the DreamSpark piece is a little different in that they should get an access code from a faculty member at their school. That is a minor detail though and shouldn’t cause anyone any real issue. I found a couple of new (to me at least) computer science teacher blogs last week: Super Computer Science by Rebecca Dovi CS Principles @ North by...
  • Get a Room! Enable Room Finder with Room List Distribution Groups

    If your Exchange Online (Office 365) or Outlook Live (Live@edu) users are already using Room Mailboxes to schedule meetings in conference rooms, auditoriums, labs or other facilities, then why not enable Room Finder for your Microsoft Office Outlook 2010...
  • Expanding Partners in Learning to Higher Education

    Partners in Learning program is a flagship program for Microsoft's work in education, and one of the things that I'm most proud of as a Microsoft employee. It started eight years ago and is the company’s 10-year $500 million commitment to invest...
  • The Power of Great Budgeting

    Written by Megan Benjamin We all know that expenses run high in college—especially for those of us who just can’t resist the latest and greatest tech toys. Assuming that new Windows Phone, Diablo III, and a new Xbox 360 are all complete necessities (they are, right?), it’s pretty important to save wherever you can. Below are five tips for saving more and spending less, leaving plenty of leftover shekels to feed your insatiable tech obsession when you just can’t resist. 1. Budget. Sure, mom’s been telling you about the powers of proper budgeting for years, but...
  • Building positive group work ethics in project-based learning

    Can you think of a job or profession that is done alone? No co-workers to consult, no team responsible for contributing different pieces of a project, no meetings (well, maybe that might be okay ; ) It’s hard to come up with many. Artist? Author? (at...
  • Teacher Trainer Professional Development Program

    The Microsoft Innovative Educator (MIE) program provides trainers the opportunity to deepen and expand their skills on integrating technology in their teacher training to positively impact teaching and learning. MIE participants will leave the two-day event with tools and training materials that support engaging, hands-on professional development. These seminars are designed for trainers who have responsibilities for training educators on the integration of technology in the classroom. It is encouraged to have small teams from schools and districts attend as there will be time set aside to develop...
  • Working with UNESCO to help teachers use technology in their classrooms

    One of the things on the mind of government officials and education leaders around the world is how to raise the quality and impact of teaching and innovative teaching practices. The use of technology to drive change and innovation in classrooms is at...
  • How Many Sorting Algorithms Do Beginners Need To Learn

    Do beginners even need to learn sorting algorithms? Let’s face it most modern programming environments have a sort function built in. In the so-called real world just about the only people who write sorting algorithms have PhDs in math or computer science and have likely published papers in peer reviewed journals on the sorting subject. So why take up time in a first programming course to talk about sorting? Because its good for them! Well sort of. I was looking through the first textbook I wrote some 11 years ago and finding that it include both the bubble and selections sorts. Now these are terribly...
  • What To Tell Students About Computer Science

    Last Friday I drove down to Cape Cod. Just over the Cape Cod canal via the Bourne Bridge is Upper Cape Tech. They have an outstanding culinary arts program and while I really did enjoy lunch and conversation in the culinary arts restaurant I was mainly there to talk to students about careers in computer science. I was able to talk to the 10th and 12th graders who are part of the computer program at UCT. I talk to students quite often and there are various ways of going about it. ( Note if you are in driving distance from my home office in southern New Hampshire I would love to come and visit your...