Weekly Roundup for June 15, 2012

PS 186 performs Aladdin on Broadway

Kids from ExpandED School PS 186 performed songs from Aladdin on Broadway this week as part of the Disney Musicals in Schools program.

Guest post by Rebecca Forbes, Grants and Contracts/Research Assistant

Bad Astronomy blogger and real-life astronomer Phil Plait extols the joys of science—and how to cultivate it in today’s classrooms and culture, in Slate.

>  After enlivening STEM education, tackling the persistent gender gap in achievement is next. Education Week reporter Erik Robelen discusses recent STEM statistics and what we can do to turn the tide in the Curriculum Matters blog.

>  Also on edweek.org, Peter DeWitt explores making recess more effective in daily school life, stressing its stress-alleviating benefits in the Finding Common Ground blog.

>  Digital Directions reports that a growing number of after-school programs throughout the country are drawing on students’ interest in mobile apps, encouraging them to develop, design and even market their unique creations.

>  Does playing video games in class sound like an odd suggestion? Edutopia has a list of videos that might just change your mind about the educational value of gaming.

>  From growing an herb garden or hanging a rope swing, to helping NASA in their research of Mars, a fascinating list of 10 outdoor learning activities to expand your kid’s summer.

>  For every $1 invested in after-school programs, there is a $12 return in saved social and public service costs, notes Gordon Campbell, president of United Way of NYC. Read the rest of his impassioned call to action for after-school programs in New York City on The Huffington Post.

>  Shared accountability—from the bus driver to the superintendent—is critical to achieving the bottom line in education, Emily Douglas argues in the K-12 Talent Manager blog.

Featured Friday Funding Opportunity:

MLK Day Lead Organizer Program

The goal of this grant program is to engage youth and adult volunteers on Martin Luther King Day of Service by encouraging families—especially veterans and military families—to serve together.

Deadline: July 15

And now for something completely different:

Looking for summer reading ideas? And you’ve already read everything on our list? Teach.com has a list of 101 must-reads in handy flowchart form to help you find the perfect fit:

Summer Reading Flowchart