Greetings! For those of you who don’t know, today is my 40th birthday.  I’d never imagined ten years ago that I would be writing online about education topics but life has a funny way of working things out.

(EdWeek) High Stakes for State Policy in 2014 in this piece, Common Core and collective bargaining get most of the ink.  Enterprising candidates would do well to discuss blended learning and technology to get past the hardened positions on the other two issues.

(Getting Smart) What a great infographic showing the history of educational technology since the 1980s and also from Getting Smart a look at Reynoldsburg, Ohio’s, eSTEM Academy

 (Big On blended learning and professional development: teachers often say that their professional development is not meaningful or relevant, so here is a chance to change that.  Particularly for teachers interested in blended learning, it seems that learning in that setting is a key to being able to teach in that setting.

(Kansas City Star) Nashville Pre-K uses tablets to help kids learn.  Kids are amazing at adapting to technology.  My 14-month-old’s favorite things to grab are our tablets and smartphones.  So far, he has been able to do little more than delete app icons off the screen, but he’ll improve with practice.

(WDTV) West Virginia district embraces Digital Learning Day “School officials also said that since students already focus on technology in their daily lives, this move has improved test scores and have helped maintain progression in the Common Core Standards.”

(Arizona Daily Star) Fordham: Is Arizona turning the clock back on standards?  The authors note that Arizona’s standards before it adopted Common Core were comparable to the Core, but the state also set very low bars to demonstrate proficiency with those standards.   Common Core opponents on both sides have come out of the woodwork to oppose the Core, but the problems they blame on the Core will not go away if Common Core is stopped and I wonder where they were when all these things were going on before the Common Core got into place.

BONUS LINK:  my father wrote a very thoughtful and heartfelt post on Facebook last night about being in the hospital the night before I was born (which was very early on the morning of the 10th).  I read it while watching the CBS special of the 50th anniversary of the Beatles’ appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show.  Although neither of my parents were big Beatles fans, preferring folk music at the time, I did an “interview” with them for a class project when I was about 10, and both of them mentioned the Beatles’ appearance as a significant part of their teen years.  So, without further ado, here are the Beatles’ performing their first song in their first appearance on that cold February night 50 years ago.