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ARMOR: Is it on you?

By Lauren on February 23, 2009

As posted about in this blog entry and in this newsletter article, Castle Hill Middle School is doing a lot of creative work to get their students involved in school climate improvement. Here's a new video created by students and staff that's being used to promote ARMOR, their new PBIS (positive behavior intervention supports) theme. ARMOR stands for Academics, Responsibility, Management, Organization and Respect. Hit play to watch:

Next up on Castle Hill's radar is an anti-bullying public service announcement created by the students, so more to come.

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National Middle Schools Annual Education Conference

By Lauren on November 24, 2008

Earlier this month, CSEE presented and exhibited at the National Middle Schools Annual Education Conference in Denver, CO. The conference featured excellent workshops and speeches from leaders such as Jim Collins, Marlee Matlin and Alan November. The exhibit hall was also bursting with resources and innovative supports, and as the educators, administrators and students explored the booths they were very excited by the amount of really relevant, useful information to use back at school. We were honored to be a part of this year's conference. Our president Jonathan Cohen presented about school climate influence and improvement and CSEE's partner Cecile Wren led a workshop on integrating social emotional learning into the classroom. In the exhibit hall, we gave away free resources about school climate assessment and improvement, and had the opportunity to meet with many excellent administrators and educators making impressive strides in improving the climates for learning in their schools. For more information, please click here to visit our CSCI page and visit here to pick up the latest editions of our e-newsletter. Here are some of the other cool, resource-rich exhibits we saw resonating most with school teams: 21st Century Classroom The highlight of the exhibit hall was definitely the ‘classroom of the future’ built in the exhibit hall and filled with Denver schools' students and teachers actually teaching and learning live. The 21st Century Classroom is geared for interactive, collaborative learning that personalizes the learning experience for the individual... here’s a clip of education strategist Sonny Magana talking about the project:

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Education + Technology: Smart Anti-Bullying Supports

By Lauren on October 15, 2008

I just read an article about an interesting new platform for anonymous bully reporting called SchoolTipline. Schools can register a basic account at the website and then invite their students to report incidents of bullying & harassment happening around the school through web submissions, text messages or Instant Messages (IMs). Everything is anonymous. Administrators can also use the site to pull logs of all reported incidents, and to create reports for state and district boards. It’s a neat idea. Most interesting to me is that students can report the incidents in ways that actually make sense to them (text messaging, IM, posting on a website), all of which seem less onerous and official than a face-to-face discussion with your guidance counselor. It’s also intriguing that this is all created by a college student, or someone who is seemingly connected to bullying and harassment. (The creator, Justin Bergener, said that the idea for SchoolTipline stemmed from his sister being harassed after reporting a dangerous incident at her school.) But I guess the question is whether something like SchoolTipline will actually work. Will students actually remember to go to the website to report an incident? And what about “revenge-reporting” - couldn’t a website used to combat bullying also be used for cyber-bullying? Apparently over 50 schools are already using the service, so they must be doing something right. How do you think schools should promote this service to students so that they actually use it?

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