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DISCOVERY EDUCATION LEADS INNOVATION IN EGYPT’S EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM

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

Hossam Mounir, Publicist Inc.
Hossam.mounir@publicistinc.com, +20 101 666 8109 

Discovery Education and the Presidential Specialized Council for Education and Scientific Research announce new initiatives to support President el-Sisi build a community that learns, thinks, and innovates using STEM concepts and digital content.

September 24th, Cairo – Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital content and professional development for teachers and students, and the Egyptian Knowledge Bank (EKB) today launched a number of initiatives that will provide dynamic Science, Technology, Engineering, and Maths (STEM) content to 23 million teachers and students in Egypt, under the directive of the Presidential Specialized Council for Education and Scientific Research, a direct initiative of Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi. Held at The Ministry of Higher Education in Cairo, the launch event was inaugurated by Minister of Higher Education, H.E. Ashraf El-Sheehy, Representative of Minister of Education, Ms. Gihan Kamal, Secretary-General of the Presidential Specialized Councils in Egypt, Dr. Tarek Shawki, President of the American University Mr. Francis J. Riccardione and the President of Discovery Education International, Ms. Kelli Campbell.

H.E. Dr Ashraf El Shihi said he is proud of this bold and leading step in the field of learning which began with the launch of EKB in January 2016. “This is a critical step towards building a society that learns, thinks and innovates. This is the vision of President EL Sisi, which has made of EKB a successful, and leading project towards education reform.”

He stressed on the Ministry’s focus on raising capabilities and enhancing the quality of the education system, through benefitting from the content available on the EKB’s platform, and to maximize the return on investment in the new Library of Digital Learning Objects launched by Discovery Education today. “This could be a good start to reform basic education and of course can inspire similar work in higher education to empower our graduates in the future to compete more for highly skilled jobs and contribute more in the future of Egypt.”

Dr. Tarek Shawki praised the government’s ongoing collaboration with Discovery Education. “Egypt’s education will only thrive with successful partnerships with global leaders like Discovery Education to transform the Egyptian educational community into one that learns, thinks and innovates with diversified knowledge. This is a national initiative that will continue to foster values for the future economic and social growth and transformation of Egyptians.  Discovery Education is providing Egyptian teachers with the tools to create an engaging learning environment through STEM concepts and engaging digital content.”

Dr. Gehan Kamel, representative of the Ministry of Education, said that innovative students are a national treasure of critical importance that needs to be nurtured. Developing a generation of innovators requires great efforts from the various education  and scientific research institutions, and more importantly huge focus needs to be put on the primary player in the education process and that is the educator. This is where the initiative from the Presidential Council in partnership with the Ministry of Education plays a key role, to have real impact on the teachers’ development and performance. There are thousands of teaches who will become ambassadors of change in Egyptian schools through this program.

Ms. Kelli Campbell added “We are honoured to be part of this very important and transformational journey.  We are committed to education in Egypt and are inspired by how much the Egyptian teaching community has engaged in the process and with the products so far.  We feel fortunate to be working with such visionary partners involved in the EKB initiative.”

STEM Professional Development

Discovery Education, in partnership with the Presidential Specialized Council for Education and Scientific Research, announced the launch of their Professional Development programme which commences today.  Dedicated to building a sustained STEM environment in and outside the classroom, Egyptian educators will participate in Discovery Education’s STEM Foundation professional development programme. This two-year professional learning model develops and nurtures teachers and principals as they build a STEM culture using a multi-dimensional solution focused on STEM teaching and learning.

Discovery will work with hundreds of educators as a pathway to start this learning journey with the goal of having these educators share their knowledge with educators across the country.   Susanne H. Thompson, Vice President of Professional Development for Discovery Education, noted she “is incredibly pleased and honoured to work with a team of local teachers who are already becoming experts in the STEM professional development programme and will spread their knowledge as they train and mentor other teachers and principals all throughout Egypt.”  At the end of their two-year journey, STEM teachers will graduate with accreditation as “STEM Now Innovators”.

EKB WebEdTV

Discovery Education also announced that the EKB WebEdTV will launch tomorrow, Sunday 25th September.  EKB WebEdTV is educational online TV at its very best.  Every school day during the instructional year, teachers and students are treated to thematically-focused programs, such as “Science Sunday” and “Maths Monday,” as well as other programmes including “World Topics,” “STEM Careers,” and “21st Century Skills”.  These programmes will be broadcasted online and give educators and students instant access to a collection of engaging short-form videos that together form three hour-long block of premiere programming targeted at each grade range.  The programming will revolutionize learning with exclusive content to drive STEM teaching and learning. Using a compilation of the most engaging and informative programs from Discovery Education’s world-class collection, and carefully curated to align with curriculum topics, it is customized to highlight programs of the day to inspire curiosity amongst viewers. WebEdTV is available online and on mobile devices for all educators and students in Egypt.

Library of Digital Learning Objects

Discovery Education, in partnership with EKB and the Global Alliance Partnership also announced the upcoming launch of the Library of Digital Learning Objects (DLO). 

Ms. Robin Headlee, Vice President of Discovery Education International, elaborated stating “The Library of Digital Learning Objects is a new and exciting initiative to provide teachers and students with digital resources aligned directly to the lessons being taught in the classroom.  These vetted and approved resources include engaging videos, images, text, audio recordings and interactive simulations. 

The pilot for Science Preparatory Grade 1 and Maths Secondary Grade 1 launched today and is temporarily hosted on Discovery Education’s portal before being transitioned to the EKB portal in time for the full launch in January 2017.  This innovative initiative will be launched for the second term of the school year across all grades in Maths and Science. 

The Library of Digital Learning Objects is brought to you by the EKB and the Global Alliance Partnership – Discovery Education, Encyclopedia Britannica, and Wolfram.  The Global Alliance Partnership is dedicated to providing teachers, parents, and students with world-renowned educational resources to transform teaching and learning. 

 

About Egyptian Knowledge Bank (EKB)

The Egyptian Knowledge Bank [EKB] was launched in January 2016. It is regarded as the biggest digital library in the world, hosting content from prominent publishing houses from across the globe. The EKB offers Egyptians across all age groups huge and diversified sources for knowledge and culture free of charge.

 

About Discovery Education

Powered by the #1 non-fiction media company in the world, Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content for primary, preparatory and secondary learning, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional development, and the largest professional learning community of its kind.  With a footprint in 53 countries, across all continents, Discovery Education’s mission is to transform teaching and learning through innovative partnerships with schools, administrations, government ministries and other like-minded organizations.  Discovery Education has proven experience working with partners at all levels across the education spectrum to create custom solutions that have markedly improved student achievement through engaging content, collaborative professional development, formative assessment and connection to a robust community of educational professionals.  Discovery Education currently serves over 50 million students and 4.5 million educators worldwide.

About Global Alliance Partnership

The Library of Digital Learning Objects is brought to you by the Egyptian Knowledge Bank (EKB) and the Global Alliance Partnership – Discovery Education, Encyclopaedia Britannica, and Wolfram.  The Global Alliance Partnership is dedicated to providing teachers, parents, and students with world-renowned educational resources to transform teaching and learning.

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DISCOVERY EDUCATION AND NUTRIENTS FOR LIFE FOUNDATION INVITE MIDDLE SCHOOLS NATIONWIDE TO ENTER THE 2016-2017 “LET IT GROW CONTEST” AS PART OF STANDARDS-BASED EARTH SCIENCE PROGRAM

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

Tiffany Ballow, Nutrients for Life Foundation
202-802-0378, tballow@nutrientsforlife.org

SILVER SPRING, Md. (September 28, 2016) – The Nutrients for Life Foundation, an educational non-profit that teaches students and the public about the vital role soil nutrients play in feeding our world, and Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital content and professional development for K-12 classrooms, today announced the launch of the 2016-2017 “Let it Grow Contest.” Returning a second year, this contest is part of the multi-year engagement program, From the Ground Up: The Science of Soil, which offers middle school students, educators and families nationwide a comprehensive suite of standards-aligned digital resources designed to deepen students’ understanding of the importance of soil science and nutrients in today’s agricultural practices.

The 2016-2017 Let It Grow Contest will award six schools nationwide that include grades 6-8 with agricultural grants. Open to educators and community adults nationwide, the Let It Grow Contest encourages entrants to visit http://www.thescienceofsoil.com/contest  to unlock the contest application by answering five soil-related questions, and vote daily for a school of their choice. One grand prize winning school will receive a $5,000 agricultural grant and introduction to a local agronomist and five runner-ups will each win a $1,000 agricultural grant. Runner-up schools will then submit a video explaining how they plan to utilize the grant prize, and a panel of judges will select one to receive a celebratory in-school winner assembly. The contest closes on March 14, 2017.

“I am excited to enter my school in the Let It Grow Contest, and look forward to incorporating digital resources offered through From the Ground Up: The Science of Soil into my classroom instruction,” said Cheryl Lykowski, Teacher, Bedford Public Schools, Michigan. “This learning opportunity will connect classroom concepts to real-world examples and showcase the relevance of science in our everyday lives.”

To support classrooms participating in the contest, From the Ground Up: The Science of Soil offers middle school students, educators and families an array of digital resources including standards-aligned interactive lesson plans, digital explorations, bilingual family activities and agricultural career profiles. Designed to engage students of all learning styles, these resources provide students with a rich understanding of the connection between soil and the food that they eat, and the important role science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) plays in modern agricultural practices.

“Hands-on learning is critical to students’ understanding of key concepts, and soil science certainly has many real world applications,” said Nutrients for Life Foundation Executive Director Harriet Wegmeyer. “Through our partnership with Discovery Education, these grants will enable classrooms to take their practical knowledge of plant nutrition needs to the next level.”

“Discovery Education is proud to continue our partnership with the Nutrients for Life Foundation and salutes the organization’s leadership in STEM education and commitment to introducing students to careers of tomorrow,” said Lori McFarling, senior vice president, Discovery Education. “From the Ground Up: The Science of Soil is an award-winning program that brings STEM to life through cutting-edge, interactive curriculum and resources that engage today’s learners and empower educators to increase student achievement.”

To learn more about the program or to access the free resources, please visit: http://www.thescienceofsoil.com/.

About Discovery Education
Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content and professional development for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content that supports the implementation of Common Core, professional development, assessment tools, 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, 50 percent of all primary schools 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 Nutrients for Life
T
he Nutrients for Life Foundation spearheads the mission to educate students and the public about the importance of responsible fertilizer use in growing healthy crops, increasing food production, and feeding a growing population. Since formation ten years ago, the Foundation has reached over 11 million students with resources such as Nourishing the Planet in the 21st Century, the Smithsonian approved, STEM curriculum. Nutrients for Life’s 2013 partnership with Discovery Education has added a new dimension of innovative, interactive digital resources for the modern classroom. The Nutrients for Life Foundation is a tax-exempt status organization described in Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.

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CALL FOR ENTRIES: Toyota and Discovery Education Challenge Teens to Spread the Word on Safe Driving

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

Erin Hellmer Perry, Toyota
469-292-2489
erin.perry@toyota.com

Winner of the TeenDrive365 Video Challenge Will Have their PSA Idea Produced by Discovery Film Crew – Contest Opens Today

Plano, TX (September 26, 2016) – Teens speak their own language, whether it’s through the latest slang, emojis or filters on Snapchat. That’s why once again Toyota and Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital content and professional development for K-12 classrooms, are hosting the TeenDrive365 Video Challenge, which invites teens to create short videos that encourage their peers to drive more safely. Teens can register and submit their entries today through February 23, 2017 at www.TeenDrive365inschool.com.

“We’ve held the Toyota TeenDrive365 Video Challenge with Discovery Education for five years now because we know that teens can really get through to other teens about driving safety,” said Mike Goss, General Manager, Social Innovation, Toyota Motor North America. “Every year, teens across the country wow us with a mix of videos that are smart, startling, persuasive and often very funny. We can’t wait to see what this year’s crop of young filmmakers come up with.”

“Discovery Education is proud to partner with Toyota on this unique program and we salute their leadership in addressing this critical need to save lives across the country,” said Lori McFarling, Senior Vice President at Discovery Education. “This contest continues to encourage students, parents and teachers to have critical conversations about the importance of making smart choices behind the wheel. We look forward to seeing this year’s entries.”

Each year, a panel of judges comprised of community leaders, educators, communications experts and Toyota representatives selects the winners. Last year’s Challenge drew more than 1,500 video submissions. You can watch the winning videos at this link. This year’s prizes include:

  • Grand Prize – $15,000 scholarship and the chance to work with a Discovery film crew to reshoot the winning video as a TV-ready PSA;
  • Second Place – $10,000 scholarship and a trip to attend a taping of a show that airs on Discovery Communications’ Velocity Network;
  • Third Place – $7,500 scholarship;
  • Fourth through Tenth Places – $2,500 scholarships each;
  • Four Regional Prizes – $1,000 scholarships each; and
  • One People’s Choice Prize, selected online through public vote – $5,000 scholarship and the chance to attend a Velocity Network show taping.

Since its inception, the TeenDrive365 Video Challenge has awarded hundreds of thousands of dollars in student scholarships and prizes. The Video Challenge is one component of Toyota and Discovery Education’s TeenDrive365: In School initiative, a comprehensive program offering a range of tools designed specifically for school educators and teens. Resources offered include tools to help teens prepare for the responsibility of driving, such as quizzes, parental discussion points and a financial calculator; classroom resources for educators, including standards-aligned lesson plans for grades 9-12; and Heads UP!, an interactive driving simulation which allows teens to virtually experience the real dangers of distracted driving.

For more information about the TeenDrive365 Video Challenge, visit http://www.teendrive365inschool.com/teens/video-challenge.

 

About Toyota

Toyota (NYSE:TM), the world's top automaker and creator of the Prius and the Mirai fuel cell vehicle, is committed to advancing mobility through our Toyota and Lexus brands. Over the past 50 years, we’ve produced more than 30 million cars and trucks in North America, where we operate 14 manufacturing plants (10 in the U.S.) and directly employ more than 44,000 people (more than 34,000 in the U.S.). Our 1,800 North American dealerships (1,500 in the U.S.) sold more than 2.8 million cars and trucks (nearly 2.5 million in the U.S.) in 2015 – and about 80 percent of all Toyota vehicles sold over the past 20 years are still on the road today. 

Toyota partners with community, civic, academic, and governmental organizations to address our society’s most pressing mobility challenges. We share company resources and extensive know-how to support non-profits to help expand their ability to assist more people move more places. For more information about Toyota, visit www.toyotanewsroom.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, 50 percent of all primary schools 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.

 

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VIRGINIA BEACH CITY PUBLIC SCHOOLS EMPOWERS EDUCATORS TO MAXIMIZE STUDENT ENGAGEMENT IN SCIENCE INSTRUCTION THROUGH NEW PARTNERSHIP WITH DISCOVERY EDUCATION  

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

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

Collaboration to Bring Award-Winning Science Techbook to 31,000 Students in 55 Elementary Schools

SILVER SPRING, Md. (September 14, 2016) Virginia Beach City Public Schools (VBCPS) today announced a new, eight-year partnership with Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital content and professional development for K-12 classrooms.  Though this collaboration, K-5 educators will be empowered with Discovery Education’s award-winning Science Techbooks to create rich and engaging learning experiences for approximately 31,000 students at the district’s 55 elementary schools.

VBCPS’s new partnership with Discovery Education supports the district’s five-year strategic framework, Compass to 2020: Charting The Course. Guiding the evolution of teaching and learning districtwide, this framework sets the district’s vision and efforts for ensuring all students are challenged and supported to reach their full potential. Discovery Education’s Science Techbooks will support district educators as they deliver standards-aligned instruction that is differentiated to meet unique student needs, as well as help maximize student engagement and create new learning opportunities that include higher-level thinking and questioning.

“Virginia Beach City Public Schools is committed to making a difference for every student, every day,” said Dr. Lesley Hughes, Executive Director for Elementary Teaching and Learning at Virginia Beach City Public Schools. “We are excited to launch this new partnership with Discovery Education, as their unique combination of professional development and digital content will play a central role in transforming the way teachers and students experience science instruction in our school district.”

Discovery Education’s Science Techbook series empowers educators to 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.  To ensure each VBCPS teacher is fully supported in their transition to the Science Techbook, Discovery Education experts will provide Science faculty high-quality professional development supporting the integration of the digital textbook into classroom practice.

A study conducted by independent research firm Merola Research, LLC found that usage of Science Techbook is associated with higher science achievement scores in elementary school students. After one year of implementation in South Carolina’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.

The Discovery Education Community will also support Virginia Beach educators in their efforts to transform students’ learning experience with digital media. A global community of education professionals, the Discovery Education Community 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. 

“We’re inspired by Virginia Beach City Public Schools’ efforts to create modern digital learning environments that maximize student engagement in science instruction,” said Kelly Burleson, Manager of Education Partnerships at Discovery Education.  “The team at Discovery Education is proud to support their efforts to create classroom experiences that prepare students for success in the classroom and beyond.”

For more information about the Discovery Education Science 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, 50 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.

 

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DISCOVERY EDUCATION HELPS EDUCATORS WORLDWIDE BEGIN THE NEW SCHOOL YEAR WITH EXCLUSIVE, ENGAGING VIRTUAL FIELD TRIPS FOR STUDENTS

Elizabeth Hillman
(240) 662-2664, Elizabeth_Hillman@discovery.com

Stephen Wakefield
(240) 662-5563, Stephen_Wakefield@discovery.com

-Unique virtual experiences will help classrooms around the world observe Constitution Day and International Dot Day, as well as deepen students’ understanding of how to protect and conserve our oceans-

Silver Spring, Md. (September 8, 2016)Next week, Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital content and professional development for K-12 classrooms, is offering educators worldwide three new, exclusive virtual field trips they can use to begin the new school year with dynamic digital learning experiences.

Offered at no cost to participating educators and students, the scheduled virtual field trips are:

  • International Dot Day Virtual Field Trip on Tuesday, September 13 at 1 PM EST: Discovery Education and FableVision are partnering to host a virtual event marking International Dot Day, a global celebration of creativity, courage and collaboration.  International Dot Day began when Iowa teacher Terry Shay introduced his classroom to Peter H. Reynolds’ book The Dot, the story of a caring teacher who dares a doubting student to trust in her own abilities and be brave enough to “make her mark.” During this special event, Dot Day Founder Terry Shay will showcase how his students are celebrating Dot Day. Students will also hear from the author of The Dot himself, New York Times Best Selling Author and Illustrator Peter H. Reynolds. To register for this event or submit questions to be answered live during the broadcast, visit https://www.discoveryeducation.com/Events/monthly-themes/dot-day-2016.cfm.
     
  • Of the People: Our Ocean, One Future Virtual Field Trip, on  Wednesday, September 14 at 1 PM EST: United States Secretary of State John Kerry is hosting the 2016 Our Ocean Conference in Washington, D.C., September 15 and 16 to promote action to protect our ocean from threats – including unsustainable and illegal fishing, marine pollution, and climate-related impacts – and empower a new generation to lead the way toward a healthier and more sustainable ocean. During this virtual field trip offered in conjunction with the conference, students will have the one-of-a-kind opportunity to learn about the challenges facing our ocean from experts including Cathy Novelli, United States Under Secretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment; Dr. Vaughan Turekian, Science and Technology Adviser to the Secretary of State; and Dr. Richard W. (Rick) Spinrad, Chief Scientist, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Classrooms will also view exclusive footage of Secretary Kerry meeting with high school students to discuss ocean protection and environmental issues. Students will also be able to participate in a live Twitter chat with Dr. Vaughan Turekian during the event using @STASatState. To learn more and access this virtual field trip, visit www.DiscoveryEducation.com/OfThePeople. Students can also share their own ocean action with world leaders by going to 1000Oceanactions.org. This 30-minute virtual field trip is the latest in the Of the People series, a collaboration between the White House and Discovery Education. 
     
  • Constitution Day Virtual Field Trip on Friday, September 16 at 1 PM EST: In honor of Constitution Day, Discovery Education will take students behind-the-scenes at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. Participating classrooms will have the opportunity to meet the new Librarian of Congress, Dr. Carla Hayden, the first woman and first African American to hold this prestigious office.  Students will also tour the largest library in the world, and, through diaries, letters, and other primary sources written by George Washington, Alexander Hamilton, and others, explore the unique perspectives of our nation’s founders. Finally, participants will tour one of the library’s research labs not open to the public to see how scientists are uncovering new information from 200-year-old documents. Students will also be able to participate in a live Twitter chat with the Librarian of Congress during the event using #DEConstitutionDay2016. For more information and to register, visit www.DiscoveryEducation.com/ConstitutionDay

To further support participating educators, Discovery Education is providing a collection of classroom activities related to each of these virtual field trips that includes comprehensive pre-and post-event lessons, which educators can utilize to enhance the learning experience and prepare students for these virtual events. These materials can be found on the homepage of each individual virtual field trip.

“Our students engage immediately with Discovery Education’s virtual field trips because they provide unique experiences during which they can visit places and meet people they would not otherwise be able to access,” said Margie Rogers, technology integration specialist at Waynesville R-VI School District in Missouri. “We are looking forward to building these and Discovery Education’s other virtual field trips into our instructional plans throughout the year.”

All of Discovery Education’s virtual field trips are archived and available at https://www.discoveryeducation.com/Events/virtual-field-trips/explore/.  Educators can use these virtual field trips at any time to create an immersive learning experience for their students.

“As a former school superintendent, I understand the unique learning opportunities that virtual field trips present to teachers and students,” said Dr. Mark Edwards, Senior Vice President of Digital Learning at Discovery Education. “Discovery Education’s virtual field trips not only provide the opportunity for educators to create one-of-a-kind learning experiences for their students, they also provide valuable collateral resources that help teachers extend learning and broaden the impact of these events.  I invite educators worldwide to participate in these truly unique events.”

For more information about 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, 50 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.    

 

 

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HEALTHY WEIGHT COMMITMENT FOUNDATION AND DISCOVERY EDUCATION JUMPSTART A HEALTHY NEW SCHOOL YEAR WITH NEW WELLNESS CURRICULUM AND INCENTIVE PROGRAMS TO FIGHT CHILDHOOD OBESITY 

Alycia Chanin, Discovery Education 
240-662-3056, Alycia_chanin@discovery.com

Sean McBride, Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation   
202-309-3050, smcbride@dsmstrategic.com

 

Participating Educators Receive Access to Standards-Aligned Lesson Plans and Can Apply to Receive Up to $240,000 in Grants and Prizes to Empower Students to Establish Healthy Habits for Life

— In Support of Active Duty Military, One Grand Prize Giveaway Will Be Awarded to a School Serving the Military Community —

Silver Spring, Md. (September 7, 2016) – The Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation, a broad-based not-for-profit organization whose mission is to help reduce childhood obesity, and Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital content and professional development for K-12 classrooms, announced today the back-to-school launch of the Together Counts™ program for the 2016-2017 school year. Established in 2010, the Together Counts program is a comprehensive health and wellness initiative designed to encourage students, educators and families to live healthy lifestyles. Since the program’s launch, a total of more than $1.6M has been awarded to deserving schools across the country.

Available at no cost, the program offers educators and students nationwide standards-based curriculum, as well as the chance to win cash grants and equipment for their schools. Updated in 2016 to address overall wellness, lesson plans tailored to Pre-K, K-2 and 3-5 teach goal-planning skills and strategies for developing lifelong resilience. All lesson plans, family resources and incentive programs can be found at http://www.togethercounts.com/; follow @TogetherCounts on Twitter and Facebook.

  • Together Counts: Healthy Decisions, Healthy Habits Curriculum: With a focus on empowering teachers with the tools they need to help their students lead healthy and active lifestyles, the new curriculum includes lessons on overall wellness – physical, social and emotional – teaching kids to make decisions that foster healthy habits throughout their lives. These resources support the federal government’s recently issued 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans and are aligned to national education standards. Additionally, for Pre-K educators and families, SmartStartPreK.com provides age-appropriate content and hands-on activities to foster healthy habits in younger children. Empowering early educators with improved training is central to HWCF’s commitment to the Clinton Global Initiative. An on-demand training module is available from Penn State Better Kid Care at SmartStartPrek.com.
     
  • Healthy Playground Makeover Sweepstakes: Administrators, teachers, parents and community members can enter this year’s Sweepstakes for a chance to win one of three grand prizes for their school, including $30,000 in cash and sporting goods and a new PlayCubesTM Playground from Playworld, a leading manufacturer of imaginative playground and fitness equipment (entire prize package valued at $60,405 each). For the first time, the Sweepstakes will designate one grand prize to a U.S. military base or installation for a school or community organization serving the children of active duty military. Additionally, to support low-income schools, the Sweepstakes will award one of the grand prizes to a school that qualifies for Title I funding. Three runner-up winners will each receive a $5,000 cash prize. Sweepstakes open now through March 24, 2017. Entry for the sweepstakes can be found at TogetherCounts.com.
     
  • Smart From The Start Awards: The Smart from the Start Awards encourage preschool and Head Start teachers to design and implement an action plan to improve health and wellness at their school. They are tasked with incorporating the free Smart from the Start lesson plans and leveraging the larger school community as part of their plan. New this year, an on-demand training module developed by Penn State Better Kid Care is available at no cost to further support use of the curriculum in schools. The grand prize winning teacher will be awarded $20,000 for his or her school, while 10 runner-up participants will each win $2,500 for their school. Smart from the Start is part of an ongoing commitment to improve early childhood education made to the Clinton Global Initiative. Entries open now through March 2, 2017. All lessons and access to the training module can be found at http://www.togethercounts.com/sfts/awards.

Data from an initial impact study revealed students exposed to the Together Counts curriculum added one or more physical activities per week to their routine while also making healthier nutrition choices. Additionally, more than 90  percent of educators who implemented the curriculum in their classroom thought it made an impact and their students had a better understanding of healthy habits.

“Lesson plans and student resources available through the Together Counts program have engaged my students in easy-to-understand health and wellness concepts that have empowered them to live healthier lives both in and outside of the classroom,” said Francie Snyder, teacher at Prine Elementary School in Manatee County, Fl. “I look forward to introducing my new students this year to the program, and entering my school in the Healthy Playground Makeover Sweepstakes!”

“Empowering American school students and their families to make healthy decisions that become healthy habits for life is critical to reducing obesity,” said Becky Johnson, HWCF executive director. “The Together Counts curriculum and the health and wellness grants show that educators, families and communities are motivated to live healthier lives, and we are proud to provide them with the tools, information and resources they need to inspire a new generation to live healthier, more active lives.”

“Discovery Education is committed to providing schools nationwide with free digital resources across a variety of curricular areas that empower educators, students and families with hands-on tools and engaging learning activities,” said Lori McFarling, senior vice president, Discovery Education. “We are proud to continue our partnership with the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation to deliver a range of opportunities that teach the importance of health and wellness, and help establish healthy habits for students early on.”

For additional information on the Together Counts program visit www.togethercounts.com.

About Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation
Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation (HWCF) is a broad-based not-for-profit organization whose mission is to help reduce obesity, especially childhood obesity, by encouraging positive and permanent lifestyle changes among school-aged children and their families. The Foundation develops and implements innovative and collaborative educational, marketplace and community solutions with its coalition of 300 corporate and not-for-profit partners.  Through its free, award-winning Together Counts™ wellness curriculum, the Foundation has reached more than 36.1 million students. As the first commitment to First Lady Michelle Obama's Let's Move initiative and verified by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, HWCF's food and beverage company members gave consumers more lower calorie options by removing 6.4 trillion calories from their products– surpassing their pledge by more than 400 percent three years ahead of schedule. In June 2016 the program expanded internationally with the launch of the Latin American Commitment to a Healthy Future at the World Economic Forum in Medellín, Colombia.  

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, 50 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 Playworld
Playworld believes The World Needs Play®. Play is vital to everyone’s health and well-being. It’s something you are never too young or too old to enjoy. We develop playground environments where creativity is king, belly laughs are welcome and children make the rules. Playworld equipment is designed to unleash the transformational power of play so bodies grow stronger, children play safely and imagination can take flight. For 45 years, Playworld has created innovative, inclusive and meaningful outdoor play experiences for all ages and abilities. Come play with us at www.Playworld.com.

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Posted in Press ReleaseLeave a Comment on HEALTHY WEIGHT COMMITMENT FOUNDATION AND DISCOVERY EDUCATION JUMPSTART A HEALTHY NEW SCHOOL YEAR WITH NEW WELLNESS CURRICULUM AND INCENTIVE PROGRAMS TO FIGHT CHILDHOOD OBESITY 

LATEST ENHANCEMENTS TO DISCOVERY EDUCATION’S AWARD-WINNING DIGITAL SERVICES ADD NEW COLLABORATIVE PROJECTS FROM GLOBALLAB, VIRTUAL REALITY EXPERIENCES, AND CROSS-CURRICULAR CONTENT

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

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

–All new, inquiry-based projects from GlobalLab help students around the world develop creative, communication, collaboration and critical thinking skills–

–Unique virtual reality experiences and new content from leading educational publishers added to Discovery Education Streaming Plus and Techbook™ Series–

Silver Spring, Md. (September 1, 2016) – Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital content and professional development for K-12 classrooms, announced today the addition of innovative inquiry-based projects, virtual reality experiences, and approximately 1,500 new digital assets to its award-winning digital services. This content from leading educational publishers further empowers K-12 educators using Discovery Education Streaming Plus and Discovery Education Techbooks to create compelling cross-curricular lessons.

To further support educators using Discovery Education’s digital services to grow their students’ creative, communication, collaboration and critical thinking skills, 10 collaborative projects will be added to all Techbooks and Discovery Education Streaming and Streaming Plus. Powered by GlobalLab’s unique web-based platform, these projects help students explore data with their peers, learn content, and build skills like data analysis, reasoning, and teamwork.  In addition, these new resources support educators’ efforts to integrate authentic investigations into classroom instruction.  Among the new GlobalLab projects available beginning today through Discovery Education’s services are:   

  • Make Your Mark – Created in honor of International Dot Day, this project helps students design and create their own “dot” by selecting an area of service and identifying a project they can lead to impact their community on a local, national, or global level.  This project also connects students worldwide as they identify positive role models they look up to and learn who other students around the world admire. 
  • What’s For Lunch? – In this collaborative project, students share with a global audience the contents of their lunch, look for similarities and differences of their lunch to their global peers, and examine the distribution of the main food groups needed to create a well-balanced meal.
  • Plant Population: By participating in this collaborative project, students will observe one type of plant in or near their school and record non-living (abiotic) and living (biotic) factors that might impact its development. Using these data, they will make comparisons to other classrooms around the world.

We are pleased to partner with Discovery Education to give classrooms worldwide access to GlobalLab projects to integrate into their curriculum and/or extracurricular activities,” said Dr. Tatsiana Krupa, President, GlobalLab. “Our collaboration with Discovery Education combines dynamic, high-quality digital content with GlobalLab’s collaborative activities to foster the development of investigation skills in students as well as critical, soft skills such as creativity, collaboration and communication.”

Discovery Education is also now offering educators using the Science, Math and Social Studies Techbooks the opportunity to further grow student engagement through an advanced level of immersive learning experiences.  With lessons powered by Discovery Education’s exclusive new virtual reality (VR) content, students can explore topics such as how potential energy is transferred into to kinetic energy as they ride along with a pro skateboarder; they can travel to Africa to experience how a growing middle class changes the local economy; and they can visit the early 1900s to see firsthand some of the technological, social, and cultural impacts of the Industrial Revolution.  With this absorbing new virtual reality content, educators and students alike will visit places, meet people, and experience events in an unparalleled, 360-degree experience.

Additional cross-curricular content now available through Discovery Education’s digital services includes:

  • 10 new video field trips hosted by Reading Rainbow's LeVar Burton: These new video field trips, added to Streaming Plus and Social Studies Techbook and appropriate for grades K-5, take students behind-the-scenes of unique places they might not otherwise be able to experience, such as Ellis Island, Cirque de Soleil, and the Aquarium of the Pacific.
  • 500 new titles from Next Animation Studio: These engaging, standards-aligned animated videos covering social studies, science and math concepts are now available in Discovery Education’s Streaming Plus, Social Studies Techbook and Science Techbook services.  The animated videos cover a range of topics, from the presidential primary elections in the United States, to the technologies scientists are developing to tackle climate change. The animations help K-12 educators to capture and hold the interests of students.
  • 50 new titles from Visual Learning Systems. Available in both English and Spanish through Streaming Plus and Science Techbook, this content allows K-12 educators and students to explore a variety of core science topics such as photosynthesis, stars and galaxies, the scientific method, the nervous system, and more.
  • 104 new titles from The Fixies. This animated series, appropriate for elementary students grades K-5, features a child character, Tom Thomas, who works with his Fixie friends to solve science-related problems. Students will explore the inside of objects such as batteries, a cell phone, and an alarm clock, and learn the science behind how and why these items work.
  • 15 new titles from Ancient Lights. Available in Discovery Education’s Streaming Plus and Social Studies Techbook, this series teaches students about the geography, cultures, political and cultural history of various countries including Greece, Russia, Turkey, and Israel.
  • 25 new programs from EV Productions. This career-focused series, available in Discovery Education Streaming Plus, illustrates the characteristics and responsibilities of numerous jobs in film, television, theater, website development, veterinary medicine, and health care.
  • 84 new titles from First American Media Group: The “Famous People of the World” series, which is also available in Discovery Education Streaming Plus and appropriate for grades 9-12, explores the life and legacy of famous artists, composers, writers, philosophers, politicians, scientists, kings, queens, and more.
  • 300 new reading passages from Jelly Bean Scoop: Available in Discovery Education Streaming Plus, these cross-curricular reading passages, appropriate for grades K-8, cover a variety of topics including science, social studies, health and math.

“The new GlobalLab projects, virtual reality experiences and other resources recently added to Discovery Education’s digital services will help our school create modern learning environments in which students can explore a variety of critical questions and collaborate to find answers,” said Lea Anne Daughrity, Director of Instructional Technology and Library Media Services at John Paul II High School in Plano, TX. “We are looking forward to integrating these new digital resources into our lessons this school year.”

Containing thousands of standards-aligned resources, Discovery Education Streaming and Streaming Plus helps build students’ mastery in interpreting, understanding, and evaluating information across all subject areas. Teacher resources include lesson plans, instructional strategies, and content collections organized around themes.  Students can access images, primary source documents, podcasts, oral interviews, books on tape, articles, and videos, and more. 

Discovery Education’s Techbooks are breakthrough digital textbooks that are aligned to rigorous standards, support a comprehensive curriculum, and are updated regularly at no cost.  The series encourages all learners through interactive features that change the reading level of text and enable text to be read aloud. The Techbook series saves teachers’ time with a comprehensive design that places model lessons, student activities and assessments at their fingertips. Techbooks are platform neutral and can be used in 1:1 or 1-to-many configurations and in any instructional environment.

“One of the many benefits of using digital resources for teaching and learning is that they can be continuously improved and updated,” said Kelli Campbell, senior vice president and digital learning officer at Discovery Education. “The dynamic new content from leading educational publishers recently added to our digital Streaming services and our Techbook series shows not only the incredible flexibility and utility of these resources, but also demonstrates Discovery Education’s strong commitment to providing educators the most engaging and up-to-date digital content available.”

For more information about Discovery Education Streaming and Streaming Plus, the Discovery Education Techbook series, and 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, 50 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 GlobalLab (https://globallab.org/en/)

GlobalLab is an e-learning environment that supports collaborative inquiry based activities. It is a new type of educational tool that integrates three major features:

  • a crowdsourcing network where real-life data collected by many participants from all over the world are transformed into new or re-discovered knowledge.
  • a purposeful community where users are united by views and insights arising from viewing and analyzing peer-generated data sets. They can place their data into regional and global contexts for a fun, innovative way to explore the world.
  • sophisticated, web-based authoring system that allows users to create investigations, inquiries, and surveys.

GlobalLab eliminates the difficulties of delivering inquiry-based learning, all in a safe and moderated environment. Students explore with their peers, learning content and building skills like critical thinking, data analysis, evidence-based reasoning, and teamwork. With GlobalLab learning is rooted in the real world, thus it becomes motivational, relevant, and engaging.  

Posted in Press ReleaseLeave a Comment on LATEST ENHANCEMENTS TO DISCOVERY EDUCATION’S AWARD-WINNING DIGITAL SERVICES ADD NEW COLLABORATIVE PROJECTS FROM GLOBALLAB, VIRTUAL REALITY EXPERIENCES, AND CROSS-CURRICULAR CONTENT