MAD-news for July: Student inspiration to help quash your anxiety around Fall 2020.

Hi Guest,

Who would have predicted that today, July 15th, would be tax day in the United States? This has been, and will continue to be an unusual year. Hopefully, we are all more open to experimenting our way through figuring out what is best for our students. Our pandemic summer is in full swing with virtual app camps and planning for the 2020-21 year. We hope we can be helpful to you and your students as you plan for the Fall, whether remote teaching, in person, or a hybrid of both.

A student from the Washington State GEAR UP program created an app called “BLM Info” for the Black Lives Matter movement with 2 main goals: to help us LEARN and to help us ACT.  She was the winner of her Virtual App Camp finale where she presented her app along with students across the state. Check out her app here. Give her feedback, share ideas, comment. It will mean the world to her. We must support student voice.

Alefiya Master

Founder & CEO


What’s New!

CARES Act Money: Spend It Wisely, Spend It Soon

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), also known as the “third COVID-19 supplemental relief bill,” was signed into law on March 27, 2020. The CARES Act provides economic relief to public school districts in a variety of ways, allocating funding to COVID-19 response measures, afterschool and summer learning programs, student nutrition and mental health supports.

Allowable uses of funds include:
  1. Providing principals and others school leaders with the resources necessary to address the needs of their individual schools, including online learning.
  2. Activities to address the unique needs of low-income children or students, children with disabilities, English learners, racial and ethnic minorities, students experiencing homelessness, and foster care youth, including how outreach and service delivery will meet the needs of each population.
  3. Purchasing educational technology (including hardware, software, and connectivity) for students who are served by the local educational agency that aids in regular and substantive educational interaction between students and their classroom instructors, including low-income students and students with disabilities, which may include assistive technology or adaptive equipment.
  4. Planning and implementing activities related to summer learning and supplemental afterschool programs, including providing classroom instruction or online learning during the summer months and addressing the needs of low-income students, students with disabilities, English learners, migrant students, students experiencing homelessness, and children in foster care.

For more information about this topic, visit FutureEd – What Congressional COVID Funding Means for K12 Schools.


Student Apps are Dressed to Impress

It has been rewarding to see the creativity and skills students have been putting forth during a most unique summer. An array of student participants in the summer sessions has produced an even wider range of app ideas. Grad students at Bowling Green University have been creating tutorial apps for a variety of math and science subjects, including a “Pocket CSS” app that our HCJ fans are excited about. Students in Duval County, FL, have proposed ideas like building apps to help victims of domestic violence and providing guides to various plants and herbs. The list goes on as the students’ imaginations and app building skills grow to new heights!



MAD-teacher of the Month

Amy Greth is conducting the last of four, week-long summer STEM camps for Pinellas County (FL) students. She quickly embraced the program, as well as the app-building platform; then she went on to lead her “virtual campers” through a successful program.

Amy has over 17 years of experience teaching middle grades math and science for Pinellas. 

She has been involved in the district’s STEM department for over six years, facilitating after school STEM clubs, summer camps, and special events. She holds a Masters Degree in math and science education and is an incredibly passionate educator. She enjoys boating, camping, and geocaching. Her love for camping and geocaching has led her to creating a MAD-Learn app about Florida State Parks and Geocaching in the parks.

Her work on that app reaped a nice reward, when Amy discovered a way to add custom backgrounds to HTML screens! A tutorial about has since been launched, and she is credited with the idea on the title slide! We love it when teachers and students come up with ideas and share them, and we applaud Amy’s work!
Pinellas County School’s STEM Summer Camp Program, offered through the K-12 STEM Department went virtual this summer for the first time. Students from 2 through 12 grades participated in a variety of online STEM activities including app development using the MAD-learn platform. The camp was offered at no cost to the students and had nearly 1,100 students enrolled.
Don’t leave without…

List of MAD-schools Continues to Grow

We want to thank all of the schools that have either renewed their partnerships with MAD-learn or are just joining our MAD-family. We are so happy to know we will be continuing our work to help students at:
•   Putnam Valley School District (NY)
•   New York Institute of Technology (NY)
•   Jones County School District (NC)
•   Florida State University (FL)
•   Chicago GEAR UP (IL)
•   Duval County School District GEAR UP (FL)
•   University of Kansas GEAR UP (KS)
•   Irving Independent School District (TX)
•   Mount Adams School District (WA)
•   Summit Academy at Lorain (OH)

Don’t leave without…

…Checking Out New Tutorials & Added Features

Thanks to teacher ideas and student requests, new tutorials have been added that show app creators how to make their apps even more engaging and dynamic. They can now use AND build animated GIFs, in-app surveys, and custom backgrounds for HTML-based templates. We encourage your students to check out these new tutorials and unleash their imaginations!
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