Print Page  |  Contact Us  |  Your Cart  |  Sign In  |  Register
October 2012 Big Deal Book of Technology eNewsletter
Share |
If you are reading this message your mail reader does not support, or is not configured, to view HTML encoded mail. Please visit to view this month's and past Big Deal Book newsletters.

October 1, 2012
Timely reminders, fabulous freebies, best sites & more "worth the surf"
In This Issue
Grants, Competitions and Other "Winning” Opportunities
Free and Inexpensive Resources
Mobile Learning on the Move
"Worth-the-Surf” Websites
Bookmark These!
In Partnership With:

Grants, Competitions and Other "Winning” Opportunities

Supplement Your Stretched Budget
GetEdFundingis CDW-G’snew website to help educators and institutions find the funds theyneed to supplement already stretched budgets. GetEdFunding is a freeand fresh resource, which hosts a collection of more than 600 grantsand opportunities culled from federal, state, regional and communitysources and available to public and private, prekindergarten throughgrade 12 educators, schools and districts, higher educationinstitutions, and nonprofit organizations that work with them. Thesite offers customized searches by six criteria, including 45 areasof focus, nine content areas and any of the 21st century themes andskills that support your curriculum. Once you are registered on thesite, you can save the grants of greatest interest; then return toread about them at any time.
Click Here to Visit Website
Win Funds to Get the Resources You Need
Bingis sponsoring the BingRewards $250,000 sweepstakesto help public school students and their teachers win a $5,000 giftcard from,an online charity that lets public school teachers request specificresources that will engage their students. Requests range frompencils for a poetry-writing unit, to violins for a school recital,to microscope slides for a biology class. Donors can choose whichprojects to support, and $5,000 will make many teachers’ wishescome true! Ten winners will be chosen each week through October 15.Enter as often as you like, and if you don’t win this week, yourentries will automatically be added to the next drawing. Each winnerwill be notified directly, and all weekly winners will be announcedon the Bing blog.
Deadline: The sweepstakes will end on October 15, 2012 at 11:59 a.m. (ET).
Click Here for More Information
Step into the President’s Shoes
Asschoolchildren watch the 2012 Presidential Election process unfoldday by day, how many will be inspired to think that they too could bepresident one day? By participating in the "IfWe Were President” contest,sponsored by Pearsonand WeAreTeachers,students can explore what they would do if elected to the nation’shighest office. The contest is supported by freeelection resources, activity packs and interactive programs onPearson’s K–12 Teachthe Election 2012website and on the OnlineLearning Exchange (OLE)Election Series site.Teachers can use these resources to inspire their junior worldleaders as they dream of changing the world—and potentially winprizes for their classrooms. Guided by such questions as, "Whatpolicies would you change?” and "How would you leave your mark?”students will collaborate to submit a creative contest entry throughtheir choice of media, including videos, podcasts, posters and songs.The winning class will receive a grand-prize package that includes aClassroom Inauguration Day Party; the winning teacher will receive a$500 gift certificate from Pearson as well as an iPad 2. Fivefinalist entries will be posted on the WeAreTeachers website.Teachers and students from around the country will then vote for andelect the class that they want to see "inaugurated” in 2013.
Deadlines:Entries may be submitted through October 18, 2012. Online voting willconclude on November 9, 2012. Winners will be announced on November16, 2012, at the National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS)Conference in Seattle.
Click Here for More Information
Plus:Students will have additional opportunities to have their voicesheard in the weeks leading up to the election throughClassroom Voices fromPearson’s OnlineLearning Exchange Election Series.
Click Here to Visit Website
Nurture Emerging Young Artists
YoungArtsidentifiesand nurtures emerging artists in the visual, literary and performingarts, including dance, cinematic arts, jazz, music, photography,theater, visual arts, voice and writing. By providingonce-in-a-lifetime opportunities, significant access to scholarshipsand national recognition, YoungArts ensures the nation’s mostoutstanding high school students are encouraged—at criticaljunctures in their lives—to pursue careers in the arts. Every yearup to 150 of the nation’s most talented 15- to 18-year-old artists,spanning the nine disciplines, converge in Miami for YoungArtsWeek.This week-long gathering provides gifted young artists withlife-changing artistic enrichment experiences, including masterclasses with internationally renowned artists, workshops,interdisciplinary activities, performances and exhibitions. Thestudents continue to be adjudicated during their performance atYoungArts Week by a national panel. These panelists then select theaward level each student receives. There is $500,000 in totalmonetary awards and up to $10,000 monetary awards for individualwinners: Gold / $10,000; Silver / $5,000; Level I / $3,000; Level II/ $1,500; Level III / $1,000. YoungArts also recognizes winners atthe Honorable Mention and Merit levels. Honorable Mention winnersreceive a $250 award. Honorable Mention and Merit Award winners alsojoin the ranks of the 16,000 YoungArts alumni who go on to the topuniversities and conservatories across the country and become leadingprofessionals in their fields. YoungArts is sponsored by the NationalFoundation for the Advancement of the Arts.
Deadline: October 19, 2012, for applications
Click Here for More Information
Inspire a Sense of Civic Responsibility
TheEngagein Democracy 2012 Student Journalism Challengeis a nonprofit project for K–12 students from across the UnitedStates and its territories. The project is run by staff, studentleaders and educators from the Universityof Oregon School of Journalism and Communication,the MediaArts Institute,BaruchCollege of the City University of New Yorkand the Alliancefor Excellent Education.Their goal is to empower youth to participate in the democraticprocess through journalism education, classroom leadershipdevelopment and community reporting, and to inspire a sense of civicresponsibility in K–12 students. To participate, students shouldshoot a video, under two minutes in length, using stories from aroundtheir community, with a focus on one of these six big electiontopics: Voter Turnout, Jobs and the Economy, Education Reform, HealthCare, Energy and the Environment, and Immigration. Individualstudents or a team of three students can submit up to three entriesfor a chance to win an award worth up to $1,000.
Deadline: Entries will be accepted through November 5, 2012.
Click Here for More Information
Plus:Students who don’t know where to start can explore the resources onthe site for inspiration, tutorials and storytelling tips. Teacherswill find helpful resources they can use to incorporate Engage 2012into their classrooms, communities and beyond.
ClickHere for Free Student Resources
Click Here for Free Teacher Resources
Generate Student Enthusiasm About Engineering
RaytheonCompany has openedthe 2012 application process for the Raytheon-Engineeringis Elementary (EiE)Teacher ScholarshipProgram. During the2012–2013 school year, Raytheon will grant 20 awards of $3,000 eachfor selected elementary school teachers nationwide whose applicationsbest demonstrate innovative methods of generating student enthusiasmabout engineering concepts. A program offered through the Museumof Science, Boston,EiE helps elementary school educators and their students enhancetheir understanding of engineering concepts through professionaldevelopment workshops and curriculum resources. To date, more than39,000 teachers and 2.7 million students have experienced EiE. Formore information about the Raytheon-EiE Teacher Scholarship Program,including eligibility and submission requirements, or
Deadline: Applications will be accepted through November 16, 2012. Awards will be announced in February 2013.
Click Here for More Information
Return to Top
Free and Inexpensive Resources

Design, Assess and Manage Meaningful Projects
In Project BasedLearning (PBL), students go through an extended process ofinquiry in response to a complex question, problem or challenge.While allowing for some degree of student "voice and choice,”rigorous projects are carefully planned, managed and assessed to helpstudents learn key academic content, practice 21st century skills(such as collaboration, communication and critical thinking) andcreate high-quality, authentic products and presentations. The BuckInstitute for Education’s PBL website enables educators toconduct a Do-It-Yourself search of projects from 17 sources,addressing 449 subjects, in the following categories: After School,Arts, Career Technical Education, English Language Arts, Global,Health, Math, Science, Social Studies and World Languages. The sitealso provides freeplanning forms, student handouts,rubrics and articles for educators to download and useto design, assess and manage projects.
Click Here to Access Free Resources
Align Civic Education to the Common Core
TheCivic EducationAlignment Guide to the Common Core State Standards for EnglishLanguage Arts isan innovative resource published by the LosAngeles County Office of Educationin collaboration with the TrinityCounty Office of Educationand CaliforniaCampaign for the CivicMission of Schools.The guide provides English language arts teachers with a civiceducation context for improving literacy skills and offers socialstudies teachers a pedagogical framework for building literacycompetencies needed for civic life. By integrating the goals of theCommon Core State Standards initiative and the goals of civiceducation, educators can provide all students with the knowledge,skills and dispositions needed for success as effective, responsibleand engaged citizens in the 21st century. The guide is available as afreedownloadable PDF file on the National Council for the Social Studies(NCSS) CONNECTED website.
Click Here to Download Free Guide
Get to Know Each Other
Icebreakers.wsis an online catalog of dozens of funicebreaker andteam-builderactivitiescategorized by group size and activity type. To find an activityappropriate for your group, just select your group’s size (small,medium, large, extra large) and then use the activity-category linksto find "get-to-know-you” games, "team building” games or"active” (break a sweat) games.
Click Here to Access Free Icebreaker Activities
Open Up a World of Learning Opportunities
PowerMyLearning.comis a freeonline platform for K–12 students, teachers and parents, developedby the national nonprofit organization CFY.CFY has selected effective digitallearning activitiesavailable on the web and has made them easily accessible and usablein one place. A freeaccount grants access to 1,000+ thoroughly vetted academic games,interactive simulations and videos; easy-to-find activities tagged bysubject, grade and Common Core Standards; a "Playlist” feature tosequence activities and individualize learning by student or class;lesson plans to incorporate activities into instruction; detailedreports for teachers, parents and students; badges and "Playpoints”to reward student usage; and a flexible platform that can be used inschool, after school, at home or anywhere in between. The site isaccessible in Englishand Spanish.
Click Here to Access Free Digital Activities
Return to Top
Mobile Learning on the Move

Create Beautifully Designed Slideshows
HaikuDeck, an iPadapp from GiantThinkwell, enablesusers to create beautiful slide presentations. Like other slidepresentation apps, Haiku Deck provides freetemplatesfor creating presentations, but some significant features of HaikuDeck stand out. First, the app intentionally limits how much text auser can put on each slide. Second, Haiku Deck helps users findCreativeCommons–licensed imagesfor their presentations. When a user types a word or words on aslide, Haiku Deck will search for images. The images that Haiku Deckserves up are large enough to completely fill the slide. For apersonalized touch, users can also upload their own images from theiriPad or import images from Flickr, Picasa, Instagram or Facebook.
Click Here to Visit iTunes App Store
Stimulate the Imagination
EverAge’sStory Wheelappfor the iPad,iPhone andiPod Touch isdesigned to promote audiostorytelling.Students spin the Story Wheel on their mobile device, and when itlands on an image, they dictate a short story based on that image.When they are finished recording, students can play back their storyaccompanied by animations generated by Story Wheel. The basic StoryWheel app is free.More thematic sets of images can be added to the app with a $0.99in-app purchase.
ClickHere to Visit Website
Click Here to Visit iTunes App Store
Make Spelling Interactive
SimplexSpelling Lite, fromPyxwise Software,is a freeappfor the iPad,iPhoneand iPod Touchdesigned to improve spelling and reading skills in a fun andinteractive way by using the "reverse phonics” approach incombination with contextually relevant spelling generalizations.Simplex Spelling Lite contains more than 50 high-frequency Englishwords. The activities enablestudents to build on each word, gaining skills beyond sheermemorization of words. The informative spelling-generalization hintexplains why words are spelled in a particular way. Simplex SpellingLite enhances understanding in a variety of students—from childrenjust learning to spell to those learning English as a secondlanguage—as it appeals to audio, visual and tactile learners. TheLite version is available in English only; the full high-definitionversion ($4.99) comes with its own lists of Dolch high-frequencyspelling words and is available in 15 languages, including Chinese,Japanese, Korean, Polish, Portuguese and Spanish.
Click Here to Visit iTunes App Store
Turn Math into an Adventure
Designedfor students aged 5 to 12, OperationMath, for theiPad,teaches basic addition, subtraction, multiplication and divisionthrough interactive game play that turns boring tables into a globaladventure. In OperationMath, Dr. Odd is on aglobal quest to eliminate the world’s even numbers, and students’job is to stop him by seeking out his secret bases, destroying hismenacing mainframes and making the world a safer place for math. Theapp includes 105 missions based on three different skill levels.Students complete each mission by solving the equations that lock thedoors along their escape route in 60 seconds or less. If they aresuccessful, they will earn all the uniforms and watches of a seasonedBase10 spy. The app, from SpinlightStudio, is availablefor $2.99 in the iTunes App Store.
Click Here to Visit iTunes App Store
Return to Top

Create a 21st Century Technology Learning Environment
Thiswebsite, sponsored by the IowaArea Education Agencies,provides some guiding questions, examples, timelines and sharedexperiences of districts that have found success in implementing a1:1 learningenvironment.Successful implementation relies on planning, preparation,implementation, professional development and ongoing evaluation andadjustments. The site’s content is adapted from theISTE Essential Conditions, 21 Steps to 21st Century 1-to-1 Success,and the AnytimeAnywhere Learning Foundation.
Click Here to Visit Website
Import Computing into Students’ Studies
Ratherthan seeking to draw students into computing courses in school, theUniversity ofColorado’s eCSite(EngagingComputerSciencein TraditionalEducation)programbrings computing into the courses that K–12 students are alreadytaking. Because computing has become so important in so many fields,importing a meaningful exposure to computing into students’ studiesin other fields can be done without compromising existing learninggoals. For example, biology students can learn about the role ofcomputing in sequencing genetic materials in a way that enhancestheir grasp of the biology. One of the program’s main goals is toshow that Computer Science is applicable to a wide range of subjectareas. Toward that goal, eCSite fellows are working with K–12teachers to bring eCSite materials to students in the followingareas: Art, Biology, Free Sciences, Health, Human Centered Computing,Math and Music. The Unitsand Lessons sectionof the program’s website provides freedownloadable educational resources that eCSite has developed. Thematerials are also listed by Subject Areas: Biology Units, Civics andSocial Sciences Units, and Human Centered Computing Units.
Click Here to Visit Website
Make Technology on Your Time
Sylvia’sSuper Awesome Maker Showis a do-it-yourself web show on "everything cool and worth making.”The show features a young girl named Sylvia making paper rockets,crazy putty, squishy circuits and more. In each episode, Sylviaprovides directions for a scienceproject andexplanationsof the science behind it. A section with freedownloadable printablesprovides other ideas of things to make at school or at home.
Click Here to Visit Website
Plus:If your students have a cool idea for Super-Awesome Sylvia to make onher web show, let her know using the online form under theideas/contact button. The best submissions will be included in a Showand Tell section forall to see in the coming weeks.
Click Here to Submit Ideas
Return to Top
"Worth-the-Surf” Websites

Simulate a Micro Economy in Your Classroom
Afinancial education program that Vanguardis offering free ofcharge to USclassrooms uses experiential learning to teach students fromkindergarten through high school about money: how to earn it, how tosave it and how to spend it. The program, MyClassroom Economy,establishes a simulated economy in a classroom where students earncredits, or "dollars,” by completing classroom jobs, taking onextra-credit assignments, achieving exceptional grades andparticipating in extracurricular activities. They can use theircredits to pay for rent on their desks or at a class store or auctionwhere they can purchase grade-appropriate items, such as markers andsmall gadgets. They can even save enough to buy their desk or otherstudents’ desks as a source of income. Students can also be finedfor misbehavior. The program’s website features resources to helpteachers guide their students through various activities, as well asa suggested schedule for introducing topics.
Click Here to Visit Website
Inspire Young Readers and Writers
NBC Learn, theeducation arm of NBC News, has launched an original videoseries called "Writers Speak to Kids.” Throughinterviews with popular and award-winning children’s book authors,the series reaches out to young readers and writers to inspire andteach. With questions narrated by NBC News correspondent Jenna BushHager, the authors featured share their writing process andexperiences, helping students to learn more about the craft andtechniques of creative writing. The free 17-part video serieskicked off on September 17 with six author interviews. Throughout thefall, the "Writers Speak to Kids” series will feature a widevariety of authors, including those who have written New YorkTimes bestselling titles and Newbery award-winning books.
Click Here to Visit Website
Discover the Magic of Autumn
To help studentsunderstand why leaves change colors, Maine’s ForestService website displays an animated video, titled"Maine’s Autumn Magic,” which explains how leaves reveal theirfall colors. The site also has a glossary of tree terms tohelp students understand some of the terms in the video.
Click Here to VisitWebsite
Click Here to Access Glossary
Plus: USAToday has a simple interactive illustration thatstudents can click through to see how the weather affects the colorof leaves. Students can select individual tree leaves to see whatdifferent leaves look like throughout the seasons.
Click Here to Visit Website
Make a Personal Connection to History
Produced by the Museumof Jewish Heritage in New York City, Coming of Age Now isa free, interactive online curriculum that teachesmiddle school and high school students about the Holocaust throughthe powerful stories of young people who survived. Students willlearn to connect this history to the world today, exploring themes ofidentify and personal responsibility. The website integratesfirst-person videos and narratives of Holocaust survivors, artifactexplorations, student projects and online discussions.
Click Here to Visit Website
Join a Professional Learning Community with Webinars
Overthe past year, edWebhas hosted more than 100 webinarson topics for professional development, including game-basedlearning, mobile learning, Common Core Standards, autism, technology,e-books, new teacher help, blended learning, and more. All edWebwebinars are archived in edWeb’s professional learning communities.Join a community, watch the webinar recordings, take the CE quiz, andyou’ll receive a certificate for participation. As a member of anedWeb community, you’ll be invited to future, freewebinars and will have the opportunity to connect with peers for ahighly engaging and interactive webinar with edWeb’s expertpresenters.
Click Here to Join edWeb Communities
Return to Top
Bookmark These! fora wide variety of products published by leading K–12 educationcompanies, all of them delivered digitally. Many of the ebooks can beused on interactive whiteboards and various mobile reading devices.All of the books whose covers you see displayed are on sale at a 15%discount. To stay informed about what’s going on with ebooks inK–12 schools, sign up for the freeenewsletter,K12TeacherFile.
Download a free eBook of the popular print edition of The Big Deal Book of Technology for K–12 Educators. Explore the many opportunities to fund your special programs, access timely reports and articles, locate free and inexpensive resources and identify engaging interactive Web sites.
Geta freecopyof TheBig Deal eBook of Resources for 21st Century Teaching and Learning:From the 3Rs to the 4Cs.Explorethis collection of resources to help students move beyond the 3Rs andembrace the 4Cs—Communication,Collaboration,CriticalThinking and Creativity—the21st century skills cited by industry as keys to innovation andinvention in an increasingly challenging global economy.
Signup at TheBig Deal BookWebsite for hELLo!,afree quarterly ELL e-newsletterthatincludes a wealth of information on interactive resources forstudents, teachers, librarians, principals and others involved in theeducation of English language learners.
JoinThe Big Deal Bookof Technology’s"AmazingResources for Educators” communityon the edWeb to get more frequent updates on grantdeadlines, freeresourcesand hot new sites for21st century learning.And, of course, you can share any great new resources that you’veunearthed!
Browse the newBig Deal eBookstore, in partnership with!Find thousands of titles from your favorite educational publishers.
Explorethe WebWednesdayfeature you’ll findnew interactiveexperiences andresourcesthat incorporate 21stcentury themesand skillsinto the study of core subjects.
Return to Top
To forward a copy of this newsletter to a friend, please click here .
If you received a forwarded version of this newsletter and wish to subscribe for FREE, visit: If you wish to unsubscribe to this email newsletter, please email with "unsubscribe" in the subject.
Community Search
Sign In

Forgot your password?

Haven't registered yet?


MASL EC Meeting

MASL ESSA Workshop

SLSSLA Meeting

Latest News
Featured Members