Tech Showcase roundup: February

A curriculum on developing student character and helping them find their passion, plus resources about science, blended learning, phonics, SPED and school choice are highlighted in this month's Tech Showcase.

Program aims to shape student character, success. 7 Mindsets Academy is an online curriculum designed to build character in students and help them create a blueprint for success in their lives. Built around seven core principles, the program uses games and activities to help students identify their passions, see how they connect to their communities and world, and carve out their path for success.

Tool aims to help teachers adopt blended learning. ThinkCERCA has released its Classroom Planning Tool for teachers looking to bring blended learning into their classrooms. The tool has models for environments with shared devices and one-to-one devices.

Free lab notebook, activities for science classes. Mobile app Science Journal lets students use their smartphone or external sensor to conduct experiments and record findings. Teachers can find activity ideas -- such as building musical instruments that respond to light -- online at the Making & Science website.

E-book offers free lessons, materials for teaching phonics. FREEPhonics is a free e-book from Primary Concepts with 82 lessons designed to help pre-K students build vocabulary and reading skills. The curriculum also comes with materials to support instruction, such as a teacher app and reproducible pages with letter tiles, word-building mats and sorting journals.

Webinars offer tips for SPED educators. Educators working in special-education classrooms can attend three free webcasts to get ideas and insights on how to better serve their students. Educational neuroscience, cultivating pride in students with "hidden" disabilities and using the STOIC framework to improve student behavior are among the topics slated for discussion.

Infographic gives insight on expanding school choice. One in four parents have trouble finding information about their school options and 25% struggle with the enrollment processes, according to an infographic from School Mint. This piece outlines common barriers to school choice and what cities can do to help parents navigate this process.

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