Imagine Learning Gives Back in 2016 – Holiday Edition

Every day, caring educators give their all to help kids everywhere succeed, learn, and grow. At Imagine Learning, we enjoy helping educators do all three of these things.

But what about kids in the local community–particularly during the holidays? Here’s our report for late 2016:

Startup Santa, United Way, aquarium book box, Imagine Learning

Aquarium book box

Startup Santa

During November and early December of 2016, Imagine Learning employees gathered 1,138 books (some new, some gently used) to donate to United Way’s “Startup Santa” project.

As part of the fun, employees were invited to decorate a box of books. Ours went swimmingly, as you can see!

Stansbury Elementary

Each December, Imagine Learning employees give back to disadvantaged kids who otherwise might not get holiday gifts.

For example, Stansbury Elementary (Salt Lake City, UT) welcomes many low-income students through its doors daily. Because of donations from Imagine Learning employees, 70 Stansbury students were able to have a happy holiday season in 2016. And we look forward to helping again in 2017!

Sponsored Families

The holiday season was also a little brighter for 15 other Utah children in four families, thanks to several of our Imagine elves who gathered clothing items, toys, and books for each child on the list. In some cases, employees purchased more than one gift for these kids–and some offered cash donations.

We love and appreciate our generous Imagine Learning team for all they do to help children and families each year. Happy New Year!

 

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Brain Science 101: What Doesn’t Kill You Makes You Smarter

Brain neurons, get smarter, cognition, Imagine Learning In a 2011 Scientific American article, behavioral therapist Andrea Kuszewski reinforced a concept that continues to gain traction today–namely, that it’s possible to improve one’s native intelligence.

In the past, even respected scientists assumed that intelligence was purely genetic and unlikely to change over time.

Nowadays, neuroscientists and cognitive therapists recognize that fluid intelligence (e.g., the capacity to learn and process new information) is the reality.

More importantly, people can boost their fluid intelligence by improving their working memory. But how?

Five Principles

According to Kuszewski, you don’t have to be a genius to improve cognition. Even those with low IQs can grow in fluid intelligence. To quote the author, “what doesn’t kill you (will make) you smarter.” Read more »

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How to Choose a Fun and Effective Math Video Game

video games, math fluency, Big Brainz, Timez Attack, choose best learning, effective math video, success, math fact automaticityLet’s face it—not many kids are interested in reciting their multiplication tables or practicing addition when they’ve got video games to play, TV to watch, and technology to explore.

Unfortunately, too many parents and educators automatically assume that video games are mere time wasters, as mentioned in our earlier discussion about game-based learning.

Of course, sorting out the effective math games from the mediocre ones can be a challenge. Not every game is equal when it comes to producing lasting learning. So, what to do? Read more »

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Imagine Learning Talks About the Common Core Standards

Common Core, Imagine Learning, state standards, advocates, opponents, CCSS, benefits, classroom, assessments, tests, fact or fictionAt Imagine Learning, we’re quite familiar with the variety of opinions surrounding the Common Core State Standards (CCSS).

Although our own programs are aligned with multiple state standards (and not just the CCSS), we know what most educators are thinking on the subject. Here, we share a few of our findings.

What the Data Say

In August of 2015 a nationwide PDK/Gallup poll revealed that a majority of respondents oppose the teaching of Common Core. Interestingly, black and Hispanic respondents showed a lower level of opposition, at just 35 and 50 percent respectively.

In an earlier (2013) poll by PDK/Gallup, 72 percent of those polled indicated that they trust public school educators. But the same respondents also assume most educators oppose the CCSS, a view not aligned with the data.

In reality, 75 percent of educators support CCSS standards. Read more »

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It’s a Grand Old Flag! 10 Facts about the Stars & Stripes

Imagine This, blog, Flag Day, flag etiquette, flag history, 2016, facts about flag, America

Betsy Ross and the flag

People around the world recognize it as one of a kind. Officers salute it, children pledge allegiance in front of it, and citizens honor it.

It’s arguably our most famous national symbol–the flag of the United States of America.

While Americans and world citizens alike may know our country’s flag, everyone can still learn more about its history and use.

For young and old, here are ten important facts to remember on Flag Day, Independence Day, or any other time of year when the flag passes by.

Flag History

1. Many flag historians believe that the first American flag combined the Union Jack (British flag) with the 13-striped Colonial Merchant ensign.

At that time, posting the Union Jack without authorization was an illegal act, but the Continental Army ignored the statute and flew the flag as an act of rebellion against the British Crown. Read more »

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