EdUnderground Gains Press Nationally

The Highlander Institute’s teacher innovation lab, EdUnderground, has been gaining press and national attention. The group is growing and looking for more eager and innovative teachers to join. Monthly meetings are held at the Business Innovation Factory in Providence, RI.

Here is one EdUnderground article from EdSurge.

“There’s a group abuzz and making an impact in Rhode Island–a growing group called the EdUnderground, a progressive gathering of educators seeking to help teachers find and employ innovative technology in the classroom. Founded in the summer of 2011 as a small professional learning group that met at night to tinker with new apps for the iPad, the group expanded its scope and reach this past summer after receiving a $15,000 Professional Learning Community grant from the Rhode Island Department of Education.”

Also, check out our post from TeacherSquare founder Jessie Arora on her blog.

“One such organization is the EdUnderground, a group of ~20 educators in Rhode Island who have come together to learn from and inspire each other. As the co-founder, Shawn Rubin describes, ‘we are group of wild horses looking for our herd, feeling a lack of exploration and innovation in our existing school cultures.”


The 2nd Annual Blended Learning Conference

The Highlander Institute is hosting its 2nd Annual Blended Learning and Technology Conference in Providence, RI on Saturday, April 27th and we’d love to have you there.  Our Blended Learning Conference will convene local, regional, and national experts sharing their models, products and insight to support innovative classroom practices around Blended Learning and Technology Integration.

We will have a lunch time keynote presentation and two breakout sessions. The breakout sessions will showcase current best practices around blended learning and technology integration in schools.

Each breakout session will be followed by 15 minute vendor presentations so there is plenty of opportunity for attendees to learn about best practice from education experts as well as the best products on the market from vendors and sponsors.

This year’s Blended Learning Conference is being held at the Rhode Island College School of Management building in Providence, and run in partnership with the Rhode Island College STEM Center.

Just like our inaugural conference last year, the Highlander Institute’s Blended Learning Conference is about bringing the concept of blended learning, its models for implementation, and the tools you’ll need to get started to as many teachers and administrators in southern New England as possible.

Anyone interested in speaking at the conference can use this form to submit up to three different ideas for sessions to be presented. All Proposals are due by Friday, March 1st.

Event Schedule

8:30 – 9:00am Refreshments & Registration

9:00 – 10:00am Small Group Breakout Sessions (15-30 mins each)

10:30 – 11:30am Workshop Session I

11:40am – noon Demo Session I

Noon – 1:30pm Full group lunch and keynote

1:30 – 2:30pm Workshop Session II

2:40 – 3:00pm Demo Session II

3:00 – 3:30pm Conference closing, raffle and feedback forms

Blended Learning at Pleasant View Elementary

The Highlander Institute is incredibly pleased with the growth and progress that is taking place at Pleasant View Elementary. Blended learning has only been up and running for a short period of time, but the outcomes around student engagement and behavior have been tremendous, and the teacher receptiveness have been incredible.

The partnership between Highlander Institute’s blended learning facilitators and the Pleasant View staff have been fantastic and the school is firing on all cylinders when it comes to implementing the beginning phases of blended learning and personalization in the classroom.
Watch this video, Blended Learning at the RI Model School from Highlander Institute on Vimeo to get a first hand glimpse at what’s been happening at Pleasant View.

Back Story: In May of 2012, Pleasant View Elementary School, a high-poverty, persistently low-achieving, public school in Providence RI, became the winning school in the Rhode Island Department of Education’s “Innovation Powered by Technology” Model School grant.

Pleasant View was one of a dozen schools to apply for the $470,000 grant which will be used to increase student-centered learning by allowing students to spend at least half of their school day learning online.

Pleasant View teachers have only been working with Blended Learning since the fall and already the school is seeing dramatic changes in student engagement and achievement.

The Highlander Institute has been a strategic partner for Pleasant View both in securing the RI Innovation grant and in helping to implement blended learning. If you are interested in getting blended learning up and running at your school contact