Skip to content

DISCOVERY EDUCATION INVITES EDUCATORS AND ADMINISTRATORS WORLDWIDE TO PARTICIPATE IN ANNUAL SPRING VIRTCON

Elizabeth Hillman, Discovery Education
(240) 662-2664, Elizabeth_hillman@discovery.com

Stephen Wakefield, Discovery Education
240-662-5563, Stephen_Wakefield@discovery.com

— No-cost virtual and in-person event explores best practices around equity, personalized learning, formative assessment, culturally responsive classrooms, and student engagement —

Silver Spring, Md. (March 23, 2016) – On Saturday, April 16, Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital content and professional development for K-12, primary, and secondary classrooms, will convene its annual Spring VirtCon. Classroom teachers and administrators worldwide are invited to participate in this free, day-long professional learning event featuring online and in-person opportunities for educators to explore essential topics in education leadership.

A continuation of the dialogue that began at Discovery Education’s Powerful Practices professional learning events, the Spring VirtCon will feature a variety of online workshops and engaging presentations from thought leaders on the topics of equity, personalized learning, formative assessment, culturally responsive classrooms, and student engagement in schools.

Among the scheduled keynote presenters are:

  • Rafranz Davis, Executive Director of Professional and Digital Learning, Lufkin Independent School District, TX. Davis’ presentation will explore best practices for making media diversity and cultural responsiveness a priority in the classroom. During her remarks, she will share how technology, rich media choices and intentional thought can change the scope of belief in a school community.
  • Stephen Downes, Program Leader, Learning and Performance Support Systems, National Research Council Canada. In his presentation, Downes proposes an alternative to personalized learning called ‘personal learning.’ In personal learning, the role of the educational system is not to provide learning, it is to support learning, and decisions about what to learn, how to learn, and where to learn are made outside the educational system by individual learners.
  • Dr. Cindy Moss, Senior Director of Global STEM Initiatives, Discovery Education. In this session, Dr. Moss will provide strategies and resources empowering educators to create STEM teaching and learning opportunities that engage all students. These strategies and resources are appropriate for K-12 classrooms, afterschool clubs, and summer camps.

Additional presentations during the Spring VirtCon will explore a variety of timely education topics including:

  • Formative Assessment Using Free Digital Tools, presented by Kati Searcey, Talented and Gifted Teacher/Professional Development Facilitator, Fulton County Schools, Ga.  During her session, Searcey will focus on digital tools that educators can use to efficiently and effectively assess their students during the learning process.
  • Connecting the Dots: Personalized and Project-Based Learning, presented by Marita Diffenbaugh, Professional Development Specialist, Idaho Digital Learning Academy, Boise, Idaho. Diffenbaugh’s presentation will help participants connect the dots between personalized, project-based, and relevant real-world learning. Attendees will leave the session with a model and resources they can use to inspire learners to start researching, curating and collaborating with each other.
  • Who is Engaged?, presented by Erica Phillips, Teacher, Halifax Regional School Board, Nova Scotia. In this session, Phillips will discuss why teachers must remember what it is like to try things that are new, be willing to take risks, and ask for help when it is needed.

Discovery Education is also encouraging educators to create local face-to-face events at which they can meet with their peers, participate in the online events and discuss and workshop the online presentations.   For more information about the 2016 Spring VirtCon, including details on registration, online and in person events, and hosting local events, visit https://www.discoveryeducation.com/what-we-offer/community/events/spring-virtcon–2016.cfm. Use the hashtag #SpringVirtCon to follow along with this event on Twitter.

“Last year’s Spring VirtCon introduced me to a variety of new strategies I’ve since integrated into my classroom instruction that have increased student engagement and supported academic growth,” said Elizabeth Benno, Digital Literacy Coach, Lovejoy Independent School District, Texas. “I encourage all educators to attend this year’s event.  No matter what level you teach or where your school is located, the Spring VirtCon will provide new insights into the critical issues facing school systems today, as well as innovative ideas for supporting the success of all learners.”

“Following the success of our Powerful Practices events, Discovery Education is pleased to continue the dialogue on equity and excellence in the classroom at the Spring VirtCon,” said Lance Rougeux, Discovery Education Vice President of Learning Communities. “I look forward to exploring the topics of personalized learning, formative assessment, culturally responsive classrooms, and student engagement, as well as delving into the innovative strategies educators can implement today to overcome these challenges, at this no cost, day long event.”

To learn more about Discovery Education’s professional learning opportunities as well as other initiatives and services, visit www.discoveryeducation.com.

About Discovery Education
Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional development, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 3 million educators and over 30 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, over 40 percent of all primary schools in the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com.    

 

Posted in Press ReleaseLeave a Comment on DISCOVERY EDUCATION INVITES EDUCATORS AND ADMINISTRATORS WORLDWIDE TO PARTICIPATE IN ANNUAL SPRING VIRTCON

STUDENTS NATIONWIDE JOURNEY INSIDE SMART FARMS TO EXPERIENCE TECHNOLOGY THAT POWERS MODERN AGRICULTURE 

Alycia Chanin, Discovery Education
(240) 662-3056, alycia_chanin@discovery.com 
 

–LIVE from Deere & Company World Headquarters in Moline, Illinois on April 5, the U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance® (USFRA®) and Discovery Education host virtual event that explores the innovation behind sustainable food production– 

CHESTERFIELD, Mo., (March 21, 2016) – Irrigation systems managed from iPads, animal nutrition tracked by computer chips, and tractors that drive using GPS are only a few examples of the ways farmers and ranchers use technology to produce food in a sustainable manner. With each generation becoming further removed from agriculture, Discovering FARMLAND, a comprehensive education program created by U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance® (USFRA®) in conjunction with Discovery Education, is providing high school students nationwide with a firsthand glimpse into contemporary agriculture through The Smart Farm: Where Technology and Innovation Meet live virtual field trip on Tuesday, April 5, 2016 at 1:00 p.m. EST.

Available at no cost, this live virtual event hosted from Deere & Company World Headquarters in Moline, Ill., will transport classrooms across the country to a hog, corn and soybean farm to see today’s modern agricultural practices in action. Students will also hear from fourth generation farmer Ryan Veldhuizen, who was featured in James Moll's award-winning documentary, FARMLAND, as he discusses technology and innovation on today’s smart farms. Students and educators can register for the 45-minute event and submit questions ahead of time to be answered live at: http://www.discoveringfarmland.com/virtualfieldtrip.

“Technology drives all aspects of American society, and modern farms are leading this revolution in a very important area – food production,” says Mace Thornton, American Farm Bureau Federation Executive Director, Communications, and USFRA Communications Committee Vice Chair. “Through this virtual field trip to the farm, technology also will create an opportunity for interactive transparency between high school students and the men and women who grow food for their families.”

Discovering FARMLAND’s standards-aligned curriculum guides, lesson plans and interactive resources have become increasingly popular with high school teachers and students who are using these timely tools to gain real-world insights about where their food comes from. The program covers key issues in modern agriculture including: how technology has transformed the industry, challenges farmers face such as weather and growing conditions, common stereotypes around farmers and ranchers, and market supply and demand. The curriculum brings to life many of the themes covered in the FARMLAND film, and teaches students about food choices, sustainability, entrepreneurship and antibiotics, among many other topics. The program’s website, www.discoveringfarmland.com launched on November 9, 2015.

“Discovery Education is proud to continue our partnership with U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance to offer classrooms nationwide this unique learning opportunity that supports students’ understanding of STEM applications in the real world,” said Lori McFarling, Senior Vice President, Discovery Education. “The Smart Farm virtual field trip challenges students to think critically about the relevance and importance of science and technology in our everyday lives while also reinforcing key concepts of food production, sustainability and innovation.”  

To learn more about the virtual field trip or Discovering FARMLAND, visit http://www.discoveringfarmland.com/virtualfieldtrip.

About U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance® (USFRA®)
U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance (USFRA) consists of more than 90 farmer- and rancher-led organizations and agricultural partners representing virtually all aspects of agriculture, working to engage in dialogue with consumers who have questions about how today’s food is grown and raised. USFRA is committed to continuous improvement and supporting U.S. farmers and ranchers’ efforts to increase confidence and trust in today’s agriculture. To learn more, follow USFRA on Twitter at twitter.com/USFRA. Visit our Facebook at facebook.com/USFarmersandRanchers and YouTube at youtube.com/usfraonline.

About Discovery Education
Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional development, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 3 million educators and over 30 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, over 40 percent of all primary schools in the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com.

Posted in Press ReleaseLeave a Comment on STUDENTS NATIONWIDE JOURNEY INSIDE SMART FARMS TO EXPERIENCE TECHNOLOGY THAT POWERS MODERN AGRICULTURE 

ALABAMA STATE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION APPROVES DISCOVERY EDUCATION’S DIGITAL SCIENCE TEXTBOOK FOR STATEWIDE USE IN K-12 CLASSROOMS

Shawnee Cohn, Discovery Education
240-393-5849, shawnee_cohn@discovery.com

Stephen Wakefield, Discovery Education
240-463-2894, Stephen_Wakefield@discovery.com

— National Shift to Modern Digital Learning Environments Continues as Interactive Science Techbook is Approved in Alabama as Core Instructional Resource –

Silver Spring, Md. (March 17, 2016) – Following an extensive review and evaluation, the Alabama State Department of Education has approved Discovery Education Science Techbook™ for use as a core instructional resource in elementary, middle, and high school science classrooms statewide through its adoption process. An award-winning digital textbook series, Discovery Education’s Techbooks are aligned to rigorous standards, support a comprehensive curriculum, and include robust professional development.  The Discovery Education Science Techbook has also been adopted in Oregon, Florida, Indiana, Louisiana, Texas, Idaho, Virginia, South Carolina, Oklahoma, West Virginia, and South Carolina and is now used by over 1 million students in 50 U.S. states and Canadian provinces.

The Alabama State Department of Education adopted all elementary, middle and high school Discovery Education Science Techbook courses, including Biology, Chemistry, Earth and Space Science, and Physics, which are fully aligned to the Alabama 2015 Course of Study: Science. All 139 school districts across Alabama can now use Department of Education approved instructional materials funding to purchase and implement the award-winning Discovery Education Science Techbook, an interactive digital solution that replaces traditional textbooks.

“The Discovery Education Science Techbook’s engaging digital content and resources bring science lessons to life for all students, regardless of their learning style,” said Dr. Janet Womack, Superintendent, Alabama’s Florence City Schools. “This dynamic tool will help educators across Alabama support academic success and engage their tech-savvy students in the digital environments in which we know they learn best.”

A complete digital solution built from the ground-up, Discovery Education’s Science Techbook series helps educators transform science instruction. Utilizing an inquiry-based format built on the Engage, Explore, Explain, Elaborate, Evaluate (5E) model, each Science Techbook includes rich, standards-aligned content such as video, audio, text, interactives with hands-on activities, and virtual labs that help educators differentiate instruction and provide a rich and engaging learning experience for students. Additional student features include bilingual text-to-speech and leveled reading tools, and note-taking and highlighting capabilities. Embedded formative assessment opportunities help educators monitor student progress, and like all Discovery Education digital textbooks, the Science Techbook works on any device and can be implemented in a variety of instructional settings.

A study conducted by independent research firm Merola Research, LLC found that usage of Science Techbook is associated with higher science achievement scores in South Carolina elementary school students. After one year of implementation in the state’s Rock Hill Schools, fourth grade students whose teachers used Discovery Education Science Techbook scored higher on average on the 2013 Science Palmetto Assessment of State Standards (PASS) than students whose teachers did not use Science Techbook. Techbooks are also a substantially less expensive option per student at nearly half the cost of a traditional textbook, with additional savings derived from a lack of textbook replacement or inventory costs.

Discovery Education understands that teacher engagement is critical to implementing successful learning initiatives.  Therefore, all Techbooks include research-based professional development that supports educators as they integrate new digital content and resources into classroom instruction. The Discovery Educator Network (DEN), a global community of education professionals, further connects teachers and administrators around the world with social media, virtual conferences, and in-person events that inspire innovation and facilitates idea sharing.

“By adopting the Science Techbook as a core instructional resource, the Alabama State Department of Education empowers educators to create modern digital learning environments that transform teaching and learning and advance student achievement,” said Amy Knower, Director of Education Partnerships at Discovery Education. “We are excited to continue to partner with school districts in Alabama and across the country as they leverage innovative digital resources like the Science Techbook to support the success of all students.”

For more information about Discovery Education’s Techbook series or other services and resources from Discovery Education, visit www.discoveryeducation.com.

About Discovery Education
Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional development, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 3 million educators and over 30 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, over 40 percent of all primary schools in the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com

Posted in Press ReleaseLeave a Comment on ALABAMA STATE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION APPROVES DISCOVERY EDUCATION’S DIGITAL SCIENCE TEXTBOOK FOR STATEWIDE USE IN K-12 CLASSROOMS

The TalentED Project Launches Nationwide to Support College Access and Success 

Elizabeth Hillman, Discovery Education
(240) 662-2664, elizabeth_hillman@discovery.com 

Stephen Wakefield, Discovery Education
(240) 662-5563, stephen_wakefield@discovery.com 
 

 

UBS, Tennessee College Access & Success Network and Discovery Education partner to deliver a free-to-use online platform addressing challenges faced by lower-income, first-generation college students

New York, NY – UBS announced today the national launch of The TalentED Project, an innovative technology platform designed to help match lower-income, first-generation college-goers with top institutions that are a good fit for them. The relationship-based tool connects admissions recruiters with college access professionals (guidance counselors and nonprofit leaders) in order to strengthen the recruitment pipeline of high-potential students.

The program is a partnership between UBS, the Tennessee College Access & Success Network (TCASN) and Discovery Education, and seeks to address challenges that lower-income, first-generation students face in identifying colleges and universities where they are more likely to receive the support services needed to graduate.

Vanderbilt, Swarthmore, and Butler are among the growing list of colleges and universities, along with college access professionals from 30 cities, who have participated since the regional pilot this past fall.

The site enables higher education institutions to recruit students in their junior year, earlier than the traditional recruitment cycle. It also expands connections between professionals working on behalf of students, and mitigates the challenges associated with undermatching – when academically capable students do not apply to selective schools for which they would be eligible and have a strong potential to succeed. The site synthesizes key information about institutions, including affordability and retention.

"The impact of a bachelor's degree on an individual's economic and social mobility, and the benefits to our country as a result, are well documented," said Bob McCann, Chairman UBS Americas. "This program aims to maximize the untapped potential of thousands of talented young people, particularly those who will be the first in their family to attend college."

“High school counselors, teachers and nonprofit staff play a critical role in supporting students in the admissions process,” said Bob Obrohta, TCASN Executive Director. “This site strengthens relationships between access organizations and admissions recruiters nationwide to make the recruitment process more effective and efficient for everyone – both professionals and students.”

“Discovery Education is proud to support The TalentED Project as it creates new opportunities of access for first-generation, lower-income college students on their path to lifelong success,” said Lori McFarling, Senior Vice President, Discovery Education. “In today’s competitive job market, a higher level education is more valuable than ever, and this program will help students of all backgrounds realize their potential and increase their chances for college attainment.” 

The TalentED Project is a fully-funded program that was built with feedback from over 150 access and admissions professionals. It is a part of UBS NextGen Leaders, the firm's $10 million initiative to increase college graduation among first-generation and lower-income college-goers. TCASN serves as the project's lead content and implementation partner, and Discovery Education leads the technical development of the platform along with raising awareness of the program’s innovative resources to its nationwide community of educators and students.

 

 

About UBS
UBS is committed to providing private, institutional and corporate clients worldwide, as well as retail clients in Switzerland, with superior financial advice and solutions while generating attractive and sustainable returns for shareholders. Its strategy centers on its Wealth Management and Wealth Management Americas businesses and its leading universal bank in Switzerland, complemented by its Global Asset Management business and its Investment Bank. These businesses share three key characteristics: they benefit from a strong competitive position in their targeted markets, are capital-efficient, and offer a superior structural growth and profitability outlook. UBS's strategy builds on the strengths of all of its businesses and focuses its efforts on areas in which it excels, while seeking to capitalize on the compelling growth prospects in the businesses and regions in which it operates. Capital strength is the foundation of its success.

About TCASN
Driven by the mission to increase the number of Tennesseans completing postsecondary opportunities, TCASN aims to establish a college-going culture in communities across the state by removing barriers to higher education, promoting persistence, connecting education and community leaders, and promoting professional education and information sharing.  TCASN’s membership is approximately 150 organizations that represent multiple stakeholder groups committed to college access and success, including K-12 schools, non-profit organizations, higher education institutions, business, and philanthropy.

About Discovery Education
Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional development, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 3 million educators and over 30 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, over 40 percent of all primary schools in the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com.

 

Posted in Press ReleaseLeave a Comment on The TalentED Project Launches Nationwide to Support College Access and Success 

TENNESSEE’S MAURY COUNTY PUBLIC SCHOOLS AND DISCOVERY EDUCATION PARTNER ON NEW EFFORT TO SUPPORT COLLEGE AND CAREER READINESS DISTRICTWIDE

Shawnee Cohn, Discovery Education
240-393-5849, shawnee_cohn@discovery.com

Stephen Wakefield, Discovery Education
240-463-2894, Stephen_Wakefield@discovery.com

– Dynamic Digital Resources and Professional Development Empower Educators to Create Challenging, Problem-Based Learning Environments –

Silver Spring, Md. (March 14, 2016) – Tennessee’s Maury County Public Schools today announced a new partnership with Discovery Education focused on building challenging, problem-based learning (PBL) environments districtwide that help support students’ college and career readiness. Discovery Education is the leading provider of digital content and professional development for K-12 classrooms.

To aid this effort, the district is providing educators across the school system access to dynamic digital content from Discovery Education Streaming Plus, a comprehensive digital service supplementing instruction across all K-12 curricular areas. In addition, to develop Maury County Public Schools’ culture of problem-based learning, more than 100 teachers and administrators from across the district will participate in the PBL Champion Leader Corps, an initiative powered by Discovery Education’s Professional Development Services. PBL Champion Leader Corps will officially launch on April 7 with a special community event.

This new partnership empowers educators to build problem-based learning environments aligned to Maury County Public Schools’ Keys to College and Career Readiness.  Created with input from stakeholders across Maury County, the Keys to College and Career Readiness outline specific learning targets for students at various grade levels, and are used to guide the school system in aligning district resources to community needs and expectations.

Access to Discovery Education Streaming Plus will help heighten student engagement in instruction across the school system. Streaming Plus’ digital resources are aligned to state standards and are searchable, and include videos, images, primary source documents, podcasts, oral interviews, audio books, articles and more. Teacher resources include lesson plans, instructional strategies and content collections organized around themes, as well as instructional videos, skill builders, writing prompts, multimedia activities and articles. Through its popular Board Builder feature, students can create virtual project boards using multimedia and text to synthesize their thinking and provide evidence of their understanding of a concept or problem.

Additionally, Discovery Education’s Professional Development Services will serve as the foundation of the Maury County Public Schools’ PBL Champion Leader Corps, providing educators robust job-embedded instructional coaching, and administrative leadership support. Participating educators will learn how to develop high-quality lessons, transdisciplinary units, and the leadership skills to grow a culture of problem-based learning in their school system. Every school has selected four educators to serve as teacher-leaders who will progress through the program over four years. Discovery Education experts will work closely with these teacher leaders to establish ‘learning lab’ classrooms in their school. These classrooms will provide opportunities for colleagues to observe and collaborate on the instructional strategies demonstrated and modeled in the ‘learning lab,’ so they can apply similar teaching strategies in their own classrooms and share with their peers district-wide.

“The Maury County Public Schools are excited to launch this new partnership,” said Dr. Chris Marczak, Director of Schools, Maury County Public Schools. “The combination of dynamic digital content and professional development provided by Discovery Education bolsters our efforts to provide all students the instruction, tools, and problem-based learning environment they need for success beyond the classroom.”

The Discovery Educator Network (DEN) will also support Maury County Public Schools’ educators in their efforts to transform students’ learning experiences with digital media. A global community of education professionals, the DEN connects members across school systems and around the world through social media, virtual conferences, and in-person events, fostering valuable networking, idea sharing and inspiration.

“Discovery Education is proud to partner with the Maury County Public Schools in our joint mission to unlock every learner’s full potential,” said Rob Warren, Director of Educational Partnerships at Discovery Education. “The dedicated work of Dr. Marczak and his team illustrate the district’s deep commitment to transforming teaching and learning in a way that will prepare every student in the community for college, careers, and citizenship.”

For more information about Discovery Education Streaming Plus, Discovery Education Professional Development Services and other Discovery Education resources, visit www.discoveryeducation.com.

About Discovery Education
Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional development, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 3 million educators and over 30 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, over 40 percent of all primary schools in the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com.

 

 

Posted in Press ReleaseLeave a Comment on TENNESSEE’S MAURY COUNTY PUBLIC SCHOOLS AND DISCOVERY EDUCATION PARTNER ON NEW EFFORT TO SUPPORT COLLEGE AND CAREER READINESS DISTRICTWIDE

DISCOVERY EDUCATION TECHBOOKS EARN TOP RATINGS IN A RECENT INDEPENDENT REVIEW OF DIGITAL CONTENT FOR K-12 CLASSROOMS

Elizabeth Hillman, Discovery Education
(240) 662-2664, elizabeth_hillman@discovery.com 

Stephen Wakefield, Discovery Education
(240) 662-5563, stephen_wakefield@discovery.com 

Analysis of SpotOn™ Digital Science, Social Studies, and Math Resource Reviews Shows Discovery Education Had the Highest Average Overall Submission Score in Each Area

Silver Spring, Md. (March 11, 2016) – Discovery Education’s Science, Social Studies, and Math Techbooks were recently rated as top digital resources available to K-12 classrooms by SpotOn, an initiative of The Ohio State University.  SpotOn is a free, online database that currently has reviews of 360 pieces of digital content from 24 top publishers, including Discovery Education, McGraw-Hill, Houghton Mifflin, Pearson, and Carnegie, as well as free educational resources. SpotOn’s reviews are based on an academically validated rubric which is made up of the four SpotOn Dimensions: content quality, pedagogy, technology, and standards. An award-winning digital textbook series, Discovery Education’s Techbooks are aligned to rigorous standards, support a comprehensive curriculum, and include robust professional development.

Discovery Education analyzed over 200 submissions from publishers in the subjects and grade bands for which Techbooks are available (Science K-12, Social Studies 6-8, Math 6-12). The analysis revealed that when the SpotOn Scores are aggregated by publisher, Discovery Education rates highest among all  publishers. Additional analysis revealed:

  • Among the 12 publishers providing secondary Mathematics digital content, Discovery Education Math Techbook, on average, had the highest SpotOn Score overall, as well as the highest average ratings in each of the four SpotOn Dimensions: content, pedagogy, technology and standards.
  • Among the 5 publishers providing middle school Social Studies digital resources, Discovery Education Social Studies Techbook, on average, had the highest SpotOn Score overall, as well as the highest average ratings in each of the four SpotOn Dimensions:  content, pedagogy, technology and standards.
  • Among the 16 publishers providing K-12 Science digital resources, Discovery Education Science Techbook, on average, had the highest SpotOn Score overall, as well as the highest average ratings in the pedagogy and technology dimensions, and the second highest average ratings in the content quality and standards dimensions.

SpotOn was created to support K-12 teachers, administrators, and content decision-makers in the evaluation and selection of digital resources that best meet their instructional requirements and the learning needs of their students. SpotOn’s reviewers are credentialed educators who undergo extensive training on the SpotOn rubric, which was developed by researchers at The Ohio State University and academically validated through a national survey.

Discovery Education’s Social Studies Techbook series uses an inquiry-based instructional approach that emphasizes informational text literacy, analytical writing, and problem solving skills that students will apply in the classroom and beyond. Each subject area includes primary source documents and activities, digital investigations, multimedia reference library, interactive maps, and informational texts.  Utilizing an inquiry-based format built on the 5E model, the Science Techbook series, through hands-on labs, digital explorations, an interactive glossary, and data analysis activities, helps teach students to read, write, and think like scientists. The Math Techbook series transforms the way students and teachers experience math through engaging instructional strategies and real-world problems that motivate and excite students with diverse learning styles. Developed by Discovery Education’s team of expert math educators with the input of teachers and administrators from across the country, Math Techbook uses a Discover, Practice, Apply cycle built on the three pillars of rigor:  conceptual understanding, procedural fluency, and application.

“As more and more school systems make the shift to digital content as a core instructional resource, teachers, curriculum directors, and administrators need unbiased reviews to assist them in making informed choices on classroom content,” said Dwayne Sattler, Managing Director at SpotOn. “SpotOn is proud to help educators confidently select the digital instructional materials that meet the specific needs of their classroom.”

Discovery Education understands that support for teachers is critical to implementing successful learning initiatives.  Therefore, all Techbooks include research-based professional development that supports educators as they integrate new digital content and resources into classroom instruction. The Discovery Educator Network (DEN), a global community of education professionals, further connects teachers and administrators around the world with social media, virtual conferences, and in-person events that inspire innovation and facilitate idea sharing.

“Our analysis of SpotOn’s ratings of Discovery Education’s digital content demonstrates how closely our Techbook series is aligned to the needs of classroom teachers and administrators,” said Kelli Campbell, senior vice president and digital learning officer at Discovery Education. “We are grateful to SpotOn for the opportunity to participate in their review process, and will continue to listen to the feedback from educators worldwide as we evolve our services to meet the ever changing needs of students.”

To see Discovery Education’s analysis of its SpotOn reviews, visit http://blog.discoveryeducation.com/blog/2016/03/10/discovery-education-comes-out-on-top-in-new-ratings/.

For more information about Discovery Education’s Techbook series or other services and resources from Discovery Education, visit www.discoveryeducation.com.

About Discovery Education
Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional development, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 3 million educators and over 30 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, over 40 percent of all primary schools in the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com.

About SpotOn
SpotOnReviews.org, an initiative of the Ohio State University College of Education and Human Ecology, is a free online database which evaluates K-12 digital content using an academically validated rubric from researchers at The Ohio State University to help classroom teachers, administrators, curriculum supervisors, and other education stakeholders make effective resource decisions.

Posted in Press ReleaseLeave a Comment on DISCOVERY EDUCATION TECHBOOKS EARN TOP RATINGS IN A RECENT INDEPENDENT REVIEW OF DIGITAL CONTENT FOR K-12 CLASSROOMS

DISCOVERY EDUCATION INVITES TEACHERS AND ADMINISTRATORS ACROSS NORTH AMERICA AND THE U.K. TO PARTICIPATE IN NO-COST PROFESSIONAL LEARNING SERIES

Shawnee Cohn, Discovery Education
240-662-2661, shawnee_cohn@discovery.com

Stephen Wakefield, Discovery Education
240-662-5563, Stephen_Wakefield@discovery.com

— “Day of Discovery” tour begins on April 2 in Boston and offers participating educators unique professional learning and networking opportunities in 17 cities —

SILVER SPRING, Md. [March 8, 2016] –Discovery Education invites teachers and administrators across the U.S., Canada, and the United Kingdom to participate in the 2016 Day of Discovery tour, which begins Saturday, April 2 in Boston. This series of no-cost, one day professional learning events will provide participants not only creative new ideas and strategies for integrating digital resources into classroom instruction to support student achievement, but valuable opportunities to network with their peers as well. Discovery Education supports a global community of education professionals that connects members across school systems and around the globe through social media, virtual conferences and in-person events that foster valuable networking, idea sharing, and inspiration.

The 2016 Day of Discovery tour is scheduled to visit 17 locations across the US, Canada, and the UK over the next nine months. Each Day of Discovery is organized by Discovery Education Community members, and provides attendees with new skills they can immediately integrate into their professional practice to improve their use of technology in the classroom and support the success of each learner.  Keynotes and sessions at each event will vary and will be presented by the Discovery Education team as well as members of the Discovery Education Community.  Finally, each event will feature various opportunities for participants to network and connect in a relaxed environment designed to maximize sharing and learning. Current tour dates and stops include:

  • April 2 – Boston, MA
  • April 12 – Birmingham, UK
  • April 30 – Knoxville, TN
  • May 14 – St. Louis, MO
  • May 19 – Edmonton, AB
  • June 4 – Halifax, NS
  • June 22 – Edinburg, TX
  • September 10 – Baltimore, MD
  • September 17 – Denver, CO
  • September 17 – Charlotte, NC
  • September 17 – Ottawa, ON
  • September 24 – Anaheim, CA
  • September 24 – Boise, ID
  • October 1 – Mobile, AL
  • October 8 –  Fort Worth, TX
  • November 5 – Summerville, SC
  • November 12 – Bradenton, FL

To participate in one of these events, visit www.dayofdiscoverytour.com, select your location, and register.

“I am looking forward to participating in the upcoming Day of Discovery in St. Louis,” said Shelby Bailey, Teacher, Warren County R-III School District, Missouri. “The Discovery Education Community’s professional learning events not only provide an opportunity to learn new ways to use digital resources, but also a unique way to connect with teachers like me interested in using the latest technologies to meet the needs of today’s learners.”

The Discovery Education Community is one of the largest and most active communities of tech-savvy educators passionate about teaching with digital media, sharing resources, collaborating, and networking. A study of community members conducted by researchers from the Harvard Graduate School of Education found that 90% of study respondents believed their active participation in the community had tremendously or very much supported their professional growth. To learn more, visit: http://blog.discoveryeducation.com/den-by-numbers/.

“Discovery Education is committed to providing educators around the world high-quality professional learning events that help them evolve classroom practice and build networks of support,” said Lance Rougeux, Discovery Education Vice President of Learning Communities. “We look forward to launching the 2016 Day of Discovery tour, and encourage educators across North America and the UK to join us.”

To learn more about the Discovery Education Community and Discovery Education’s other initiatives and services, visit www.discoveryeducation.com.

About Discovery Education
Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional development, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 3 million educators and over 30 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, over 40 percent of all primary schools in the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com

Posted in Press ReleaseLeave a Comment on DISCOVERY EDUCATION INVITES TEACHERS AND ADMINISTRATORS ACROSS NORTH AMERICA AND THE U.K. TO PARTICIPATE IN NO-COST PROFESSIONAL LEARNING SERIES

DISCOVERY EDUCATION INVITES EDUCATORS ACROSS THE US, CANADA AND THE UK TO APPLY FOR EXCLUSIVE PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT AND NETWORKING OPPORTUNITY

Elizabeth Hillman, Discovery Education
(240) 662-2664, Elizabeth_hillman@discovery.com

Stephen Wakefield, Discovery Education
240-662-5563, Stephen_Wakefield@discovery.com

-Annual Discovery Educator Network Summer Institute to be Held at Loyola University in Chicago, IL-

Silver Spring, Md. (March 3, 2016) — Beginning today, educators across the U.S., Canada, and the U.K. passionate about transforming teaching and learning with digital media and educational technologies, are invited to apply to participate in the 2016 Discovery Educator Network Summer Institute (DENSI). This year, the DENSI, an immersive, week-long professional development experience focused on professional learning, leadership, and networking will be held July 17–22 in Chicago, IL.  A global community of education professionals supported by Discovery Education, the DEN connects members across school systems and around the world through social media, virtual conferences, and in-person events, fostering valuable networking, idea sharing, and inspiration. 

DENSI 2016 will feature a number of interactive seminars and hands-on workshops from keynote speakers, the Discovery Education team, and the DEN that will energize participants’ own teaching and learning. In addition, DENSI will provide opportunities for participants to connect, collaborate, and share resources, ideas, and strategies for integrating the latest technologies and digital content into instruction. Upon completing the DEN Summer Institute, educators will return to their local communities prepared to share new strategies and techniques for integrating digital resources into curriculum and instruction with peers across their school system and around the world.

Eligible applicants have until 6 p.m. ET on April 1 to submit their application for this unique professional learning event.  To apply, educators must complete a written application, as well as submit a video detailing their efforts to use digital content and technologies to support student achievement. Additional details and the complete DENSI application are available at links.discoveryeducation.com/DENSI.

“Participating in last year’s DENSI was among the best professional learning experiences I’ve ever had,” said Dawn Gardner, Instructional Technology Specialist, Richland County School District One, Columbia, S.C. “DENSI 2015 not only gave me the unique opportunity to learn skills I could immediately share with my colleagues, it also renewed my passion for teaching.  I encourage all eligible educators to apply to participate in this amazing event today.”

Participation in the annual DEN Summer Institute is open to educators recognized by Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital content and professional development for K-12 classrooms, as STAR Discovery Educators. STAR Discovery Educators are active members of the DEN and proven leaders in transforming teaching and learning. More information on becoming a STAR Discovery Educator can be found at www.discoveryeducation.com.

“Discovery Education is pleased to make the 2016 DEN Summer Institute possible,” said Lance Rougeux, Vice President of Learning Communities at Discovery Education. “We understand the role vibrant professional learning communities play in supporting educators as they evolve their teaching practice, and we encourage eligible educators everywhere to apply to participate in this unique event.”

To learn more about the DEN and Discovery Education’s other services and initiatives, visit www.discoveryeducation.com

About Discovery Education
Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional development, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 3 million educators and over 30 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, over 40 percent of all primary schools in the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com.

Posted in Press ReleaseLeave a Comment on DISCOVERY EDUCATION INVITES EDUCATORS ACROSS THE US, CANADA AND THE UK TO APPLY FOR EXCLUSIVE PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT AND NETWORKING OPPORTUNITY

ALCOA FOUNDATION AND DISCOVERY EDUCATION HOST LIVE VIRTUAL FIELD TRIP FOR CLASSROOMS WORLDWIDE

Alycia Chanin, Discovery Education
(240) 662-3056, alycia_chanin@discovery.com 

–Students invited to participate in virtual event broadcast live from Alcoa Kitts Green plant in UK on March 4th for exclusive look at careers available in today’s advanced manufacturing industry–

SILVER SPRING, Md. (March 2, 2016) – Classrooms worldwide are invited to take part in the Manufacture Your Future Live Virtual Field Trip hosted by Alcoa Foundation and Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital content and professional development, on March 4, 2016, at 9:30AM ET. Broadcast live from the Alcoa Kitts Green plant in Birmingham, England, this virtual event will connect science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) classroom concepts to various career paths available in today’s advanced manufacturing industry.  

Available at no cost to classrooms worldwide, the Manufacture Your Future Live Virtual Field Trip will provide students grades 6-12 the chance to tour a sophisticated manufacturing plant without leaving their classrooms. Home to some of the most advanced manufacturing technology in the world, the Alcoa Kitts Green factory produces rolled aluminium products for aircraft, highly demanding industrial applications and high performance Formula 1 racing cars. Participating students will see first-hand how Alcoa’s cutting-edge products are developed, and will hear directly from Alcoa engineers about the relevance and importance of STEM skills in their everyday work. Additionally, UK students from England’s Grace Academy, a specialist business and enterprise school in Solihull, will join Alcoa engineers in person during the live event.

The 45 minute virtual field trip will be available to watch live online at http://www.manufactureyourfuture.com/UKVirtualFieldTrip and www.discoveryeducation.co.uk/vft and will be archived for future use at http://www.manufactureyourfuture.com/UKVirtualFieldTrip.

“We are thrilled to be taking part in this live broadcast with Discovery Education, and to have the opportunity to see behind-the-scenes at the Alcoa plant,” said Tim Burgum, Science Teacher at Grace Academy. “The virtual field trip will enable our pupils to see first-hand how STEM subjects and skills relate to real life apprenticeships and future careers.”

The virtual field trip is provided as part of Alcoa Foundation and Discovery Education’s award-winning Manufacture Your Future program – a comprehensive online site that offers middle and high school educators, guidance counselors, students and families hands-on resources to build excitement around post-secondary manufacturing career opportunities. Manufacture Your Future encourages the development of critical thinking skills through real-world application. It offers dynamic standards-based, STEM-focused lesson plans, career guides, family discussion starters and other online resources that highlight today’s advanced manufacturing careers and demonstrate the crucial role that manufacturing plays in daily life.

“As the manufacturing industry continues to evolve and expand, we know the importance of offering resources such as the Manufacture Your Future Live Virtual Field Trip to spark students’ interest in this dynamic industry. It’s the first step in preparing tomorrow’s workforce with critical skills needed to fill the increasing demand in this field,” said Suzanne van de Raadt, Director, Global Communications and Program Development at Alcoa Foundation. “We are proud to showcase talented members of Alcoa’s UK team as they share their stories and connect classroom STEM skills to their advanced manufacturing careers.”

“Discovery Education is proud to continue our partnership with Alcoa Foundation and present this unique event for teachers and students worldwide,” said Lori McFarling, Senior Vice President, Discovery Education. “Digital content such as this virtual field trip brings learning to life in ways that are simply not possible through traditional text, and we encourage classrooms worldwide to join us on March 4 for this exciting event.” 

For more information about the virtual field trip visit: http://www.manufactureyourfuture.com/UKVirtualFieldTrip.

About Discovery Education
Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional development, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 3 million educators and over 30 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, over 40 percent of all primary schools in the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com.   

About Alcoa Foundation
Alcoa Foundation is one of the largest corporate foundations in the U.S., with assets of approximately $480 million. Founded 64 years ago, Alcoa Foundation has invested more than $635 million in communities worldwide. In 2015, Alcoa Foundation contributed more than $22 million to nonprofit organizations throughout the world, building innovative partnerships to improve the environment and educate tomorrow's leaders for careers in manufacturing and engineering. The work of Alcoa Foundation is further enhanced by Alcoa's thousands of employee volunteers who share their talents and time to make a difference in the communities where Alcoa operates. Through the Company's signature Month of Service program, in 2015, 47 percent of Alcoa employees took part in 1,000 events across 24 countries, benefiting more than 300,000 people and 400 nonprofit organizations. For more information, visit alcoafoundation.com and follow @AlcoaFoundation on Twitter.

About Alcoa
A global leader in lightweight metals technology, engineering and manufacturing, Alcoa innovates multi-material solutions that advance our world. Our technologies enhance transportation, from automotive and commercial transport to air and space travel, and improve industrial and consumer electronics products. We enable smart buildings, sustainable food and beverage packaging, high-performance defense vehicles across air, land and sea, deeper oil and gas drilling and more efficient power generation. We pioneered the aluminium industry over 125 years ago, and today, our 60,000 people in 30 countries deliver value-add products made of titanium, nickel and aluminium, and produce best-in-class bauxite, alumina and primary aluminium products. For more information, visit www.alcoa.com, follow @Alcoa on Twitter at www.twitter.com/Alcoa and follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/Alcoa.

About Alcoa Global Rolled Products, Kitts Green
Established in 1938 and acquired by Alcoa in 2000, Alcoa Kitts Green is the UK’s largest Aluminium rolling mill. The Kitts Green facility is part of Alcoa’s Global Rolled Products business and predominately serves the Aerospace, Defense and General Engineering Markets with Rolled Plate, Cast Slab, and Aluminium Lithium Plate & Billet.

Alcoa's first presence in the United Kingdom was in the late 1950s with a rolling and extrusion mill in Swansea, Wales. Today, we have locations throughout England that serve the needs of Europe's aerospace, commercial transportation, industrial and building markets. Our products range from flat rolled plate, forgings and fasteners for the aerospace industry to super alloys and advanced components for industrial gas turbines and jet engines.

Posted in Press ReleaseLeave a Comment on ALCOA FOUNDATION AND DISCOVERY EDUCATION HOST LIVE VIRTUAL FIELD TRIP FOR CLASSROOMS WORLDWIDE