Cool Toys That Make You Think

Not done with your holiday shopping list? 


Not sure what to get your children? You might want to consider some cool toys that promote curiosity and creativity.  Toys that promote STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) not only help children achieve academically but also help them achieve in life. Exposing children to STEM through toys cultivates interest in these subjects in school.

In addition to STEM products, children should be exposed to the Arts.  There is evidence that children involved in the Arts experience both social and academic benefits.  Children tend to have better critical and creative skills and are better at independent learning when the Arts are part of their lives.

So, whether you choose to buy some gifts focused on STEM, the Arts, or better yet, both, your child will benefit from your thoughtful gift choice.


Here are some examples of some cool STEM or Arts related gift ideas:

  • ThinkFun
    • From the Escape Game puzzle phenomena to circuit board building games, your child will learn valuable STEM skills sparking an interest in these critical subject areas.
  • Color Alive
    • Color Alive combines art and technology. Design a character with color, then capture the figure on the app and see the character in full animation — lots of popular characters to choose from for boys and girls!
  • Fat Brain Toys
    • A variety of active learning toys including the Code and Go Robot Mouse Activity.  With this toay, children "can build a maze, and then use the coding cards to create a step-by-step path for the programmable robot mouse. Create endless maze path possibilities, and then watch the mouse race to find the cheese."
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Achieving Equity in Education


What does it mean to have equity in education? Does Equality = Equity? 

There are various meanings that can be applied to equity in education but some fundamental characteristics are shared. Gender, social and/or economic circumstances, ethnicity, and family background among others should not pose as obstacles to achieving potential. The characteristic of fairness is an important aspect to equity.  With that in mind, it should be noted that equity and equality are both important but are not the same. We can talk about equality in terms of funding or access to resources, for example. However, students at a disadvantage might need more in order to have an 'equal' and level playing field.

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Give Thanks

Thanksgiving is a time greeted by celebrations of friends and family.  It is the season of giving thanks for the people in our lives and the things we hold dear.


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Experience Based Learning

Recently, I participated in my first Escape Game.  Those of you who aren't familiar with the concept should really check them out.  The basic premise is that a group of people are locked in a theme based environment and must break the code / solve several puzzles in order to beat the clock and escape before time runs out.  These puzzles can vary from beginner level to advanced leves and are a mixture of all subject areas.  

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Distributed Learning for K12 Part 4: Analyze

In this brief blog series we'll be discussing the concept of Distributed Learning. What it is, the impact it has on K12 education, best practices for use in your school/district and other useful tips and tricks. Before diving into this post it might prove helpful to start at the beginning. Part 1part 2 and part 3

Analyze. Analysis. Analytics. 

We realize that a lot of our brains just shut off at the mention of any one of those words. But stick with us here...

You've now come to the part of the process where you as school and district leaders can begin to reap the fruits of your labor. 

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Cool Toys That Make You Think
Holiday Shopping Ideas Promoting STEM
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