A Virtual Field Trip to Get Your Students Moving!

  • Jan 23, 2017


The NFL and the American Heart Association, working together with Discovery Education, have teamed-up to host a fun, interactive, and free virtual field trip designed to promote physical activity and heart health.

If your goal as an educator is to teach young people about the benefits of exercise, you could hardly ask for better partners.

You can experience the Virtual Field Trip with your students by directly live streaming it to your classroom on January 31, 2017 at 1PM EDT/12:00 PM CT/10AM PDT. After that, it will be archived for viewing at your convenience. Please note: No special equipment is needed to view this event online. All you need is an internet-connected computer (and a way to share with students, i.e. projector and speakers).

During the presentation, Doctor Mercedes Carnethon of the American Heart Association will demonstrate the science behind the cardio and strength exercises that NFL players Whitney Mercilus and Christian Covington use stay fit and active. Students will also get an inside look at the Houston Texans’ practice facility and The Health Museum, and after that there will be some guided physical activity that can be done right in the classroom.

To register for this free event, visit the official NFL Play 60 Challenge website, where you’ll also find a helpful collection of standards-based classroom resources (for grades 6-8) available free for download.

To help us keep you informed about other free educational resources and programs, please be sure to bookmark this site and follow us on Twitter.

 —Stephen Vincent D’Emidio


Images: American Heart Association, Inc./NFL Enterprises LLC

Improve Student Writing and Grammar with Quill

  • Aug 10, 2016


Developments in education technology are growing more exciting every year, and, for me, never more exciting than when the most cutting-edge technology is harnessed to help teachers hammer home the most fundamental aspects of education.

Like literacy, for example, and a digital platform called Quill that’s brilliantly using technology to strengthen core language skills.

Quill is a free, easy-to-use application designed to help students develop their writing, grammar, and proofreading proficiency. It’s currently being used by over 100,000 students and 4,000 teachers nationwide, and it’s making a real difference in classrooms. How do we know? We’ve heard it from teachers.

“I’ve seen tremendous improvement in the proficiency of my students and the quality of their writing,” says Daniel Scibienski of Princeton Public Schools. “At the beginning of the year, my students were able to write using the basic fundamentals of the English language. By the end, after using Quill, my students were able to correctly write essays with consistent tone throughout and even intentionally use parallel structure to their advantage.”

Teacher Randall L. Carswell of Charlotte, North Carolina has been equally impressed. “I appreciate the fact that students are required to slow down, check spelling, punctuation and the grammar lesson at hand in order to score “GREEN!” I am noticing a much better effort by my students in their other activities, whether it be writing or literature, they seem to pay closer attention leading to a stronger performance.”

So how does Quill work? After an easy set-up process teachers can assign any of over 150 language activities which are built to Common Core standards. Each of these activities takes about 10 minutes to complete, and upon completion the students receive instant feedback on their work. Moreover, teachers and administrators receive real-time data on student progress via an in-app dashboard, so everybody’s on the same page.

And did we mention that it’s free?

“All of our lessons are free and will continue to be free in the future,” says Tom Calabrese, Quill’s cofounder and creative director. “And we recently launched a premium service which allows educators the ability to gain even more in-depth student reporting. You can sign up for a 30-day trial.”

Check out the video below for more on Quill, and be sure to visit their official website.

And to help us keep you informed about other great free educational programs and resources, bookmark this site and follow us on Twitter.

—Stephen Vincent D’Emidio