Education

Minecraft headed to your classroom, again

Minecraft headed to your classroom, again

The folks at Microsoft in charge of Minecraft's gaming universe have revealed their next step in total world domination. It's called Minecraft: Education Edition, and it brings a new version of Minecraft to the classroom. Sort of. What this program does is to put control of MinecraftEdu, a program that already exists, into the hands of Microsoft. They'll be calling it Minecraft: Education Edition. It's very similar, but now it'll be controlled by Microsoft.

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Norwegian high school adds eSports to the curriculum

Norwegian high school adds eSports to the curriculum

School was a lot different back when I attended. Only in the later years did we spend time in the computer lab more than a couple of times per year. I distinctly remember having an exam in the 8th grade that consisted only of playing and completing Oregon Trail. Well, if you live in Norway, you might have a Counter-Strike match for your final exam.

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WeDo 2.0 brings LEGO, robots, coding together for schools

WeDo 2.0 brings LEGO, robots, coding together for schools

Traditional modes of rote learning, especially in science, has become somewhat passé these days. The rapid growth of technology and its growing role in our lives demand a more creative approach to education. And what can be more creative than mixing learning with play. That is the idea behind LEGO Education's WeDo, now at its 2.0 incarnation, blending LEGO's iconic bricks, a dash of robotics, and a sprinkling of programming, all for better educating grade school students not just in the sciences but in creative thinking and problem solving.

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Kyoto University: no smartwatches during entrance tests

Kyoto University: no smartwatches during entrance tests

Smartwatches are the perfect cheating tool: they're small, easy to conceal, and can be loaded with information before an exam. Some schools and universities have banned smartwatches during certain examinations as a result, and latest among them is Japan's Kyoto University. In a statement late last week, the university said it is banning smartwatches during entrance exams starting in 2016.

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This free OS turns the $5 Raspberry Pi Zero into a kids coding class

This free OS turns the $5 Raspberry Pi Zero into a kids coding class

The Raspberry Pi Zero has, with its $5 price tag, made prototype computing even more affordable, but what if you want to turn it to education? Enter Kano, best known for its kid-friendly DIY computer, but which now offers a version of its OS intended for young coders for the stick form-factor computer.

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Half the devices in US classrooms are now Chromebooks

Half the devices in US classrooms are now Chromebooks

Starting out at only 1 percent in 2012, Chromebooks have leapt to 50 percent when it comes to its presence in classrooms in the US. That's a monumental feat in three years for a device and a platform whose reason for being is still being questioned to this day. It was definitely an uphill battle for Chromebook makers but most especially for Google, who had to wrestle with more established brands like Apple and Microsoft in the education sector. And that battle is far from over as well.

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Google refute’s EFF’s “spying on students” allegations

Google refute’s EFF’s “spying on students” allegations

This is quickly going to be a he/she said, he/she said case. Google has naturally responded to privacy watchdog EFF's accusations that the search company is semi-secretly tracking students' online comings and goings, despite promising not to do so and going against the law. Google even cites the support of some of the very people who penned the Student Privacy Pledge, saying it is confident that it isn't doing anything illegal or even morally long. And naturally, the EFF has also responded, saying its critics are missing some critical points.

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EFF claims Google spies on students with Chromebooks, Google Apps

EFF claims Google spies on students with Chromebooks, Google Apps

The FCC may have decided not to impose any standard Do Not Track rules on services like Google or Facebook, but that doesn't mean that their tracking activities will remain unfettered, especially from the sanctions of a different government agency. Privacy watchdog Electronic Frontier Foundation or EFF has filed a formal complaint against Google with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). It's beef? That Google has been collecting students' private information through devices like Chromebooks and services like Google Apps for Education (GAFE), despite promising not to do so.

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One Education’s Infinity modular laptop/tablet hits Indiegogo

One Education’s Infinity modular laptop/tablet hits Indiegogo

It was way back in February that the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) initiative and its partner One Education announced a modular laptop/tablet hybrid, dubbed the XO-Infinity, promising a debut in the following weeks. Well, it's a bit later than expected, but One Education finally has working prototypes, and, after dropping the XO part of the name, has now launched an Indiegogo campaign to crowdfund the Infinity.

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Learn to code your own Star Wars game in just an hour

Learn to code your own Star Wars game in just an hour

Technology is everywhere these days. The earlier you're able to learn how to work with it, the better-equipped you'll be in the rest of your life. Kids already have access to smartphones and tablets, and the internet is always at their fingertips. However, if you have a kid that's interested in learning how to do more than just use these gadgets, some Star Wars heroes are here to help teach them how to program like a pro.

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Chicago mayor calls for national coding graduation requirement

Chicago mayor calls for national coding graduation requirement

Recently, New York City announced plans to add computer science classes to all of its public schools over the next decade. Chicago's mayor is taking that a step further, calling for coding classes to be a national graduation requirement -- under such a mandate, all students would have to take such classes to get their high school diploma. Of course, such a mandate would likely end up being very burdensome for school districts.

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Google Expeditions Pioneer Program makes VR educational

Google Expeditions Pioneer Program makes VR educational

Once only associated with gaming and entertainment, virtual reality is now working its way into sports, news, and soon, classrooms. The latter is what Google was aiming for when it revealed its Google Expeditions plan at Google I/O late last May. Those plans are now coming to fruition, as the company formally launches its Expeditions Pioneer Program, inviting teachers and schools to try out the new technology that could almost literally open students' eyes to the vast world existing outside the four corners of their classrooms.

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