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Education tools to help
kids succeed in 2018

(StatePoint) In today’s tech-driven world, the classroom is evolving rapidly. Students equipped with the right tools will get a leg up on their studies and long-term success.
  So, what’s effective in the world of educational tools today? Check out these innovative items.
Music Made Easier
  Music has always helped children learn and succeed in their other classes. However, it can now be easier than ever before, as new tools have made learning to play easier. For example, the LK-265 keyboard from Casio has 61 full-size, touch-sensitive keys with a Key Lighting System that illuminates keys to indicate which notes to play, making learning easier. Combined with its intuitive Step-Up Lessons, kids can quickly learn to play both built-in songs, as well as favorites downloaded through a free compatible app called Chordana.
Science on Your Phone
  The scientific process has never been so user-friendly. Check out free apps for Android and iPhone that support science education -- from tools that give young scientists an opportunity to organize their hypothesis, notes and observations on self-driven scientific trials, to those that offer step-by-step directions and video demonstrations of experiments.
Math Support
  To not only survive today’s math classes but to thrive in them, students will need the advanced features of a next-generation graphing calculator, such as Casio’s fx-CG50 Prizm, which will support their education through middle school, high school and into college. With Natural Textbook Display and an intuitive icon-based menu, students will find it easy-to-use, and its brand-new 3D Graph Drawing and improved catalog function allow for greater engagement and real-life application in the classroom.
Taking it Down
  Notetaking, a once manual often disordered endeavor, has gotten a facelift thanks to the modern age. New desktop and mobile apps make it easier for students to organize, sort and share notes, as well as quickly reference them later when it’s time to cram for that exam. Many platforms offer free basic accounts, with the option of upgrading for more features. However, doing so may come with a subscription fee, which may be worth it depending on a student’s note-taking style and needs.
     Keeping up with the classmates is often like keeping up with the Joneses. Having the latest educational tools can mean a better learning experience.

What are STEAM subjects 
and why they matter
(StatePoint) If you’ve heard your child’s educators talking about “STEAM” subjects, they are referring to Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math. And these subjects are growing in importance, as more industries require a strong mastery of the concepts and skills involved.
  What’s more, a growing body of research shows that exposure to the arts can have a positive impact on one’s performance in science and math-oriented subjects. As your children prepares to succeed in all their classes, keep these things in mind:
The Right Classes
  Talk to your children about ensuring they stack their class schedules with courses that challenge but don’t overwhelm them. It’s easy to overload a schedule with far too many advanced science courses in one semester that can make success unattainable. By the same token, it’s important to ensure that your student is taking enough of the right classes to build a strong foundation for future endeavors. A guidance counselor can help your child strike the right balance.
The Right Tools
  STEAM success is built on having the right tools, so be sure students are well-equipped. New models of calculators are taking into account the demands on today’s students and offer expanded features that give students the ability to easily draw three dimensional graphs and view them from various angles to better analyze their shapes. For example, the fx-CG50, the newest model in Casio’s calculator portfolio, features a picture plot function and color LCD with a full textbook-style display.
  Likewise, students can build a strong arts foundation by learning to play an instrument. Modern music students may prefer using the most cutting-edge instruments, such as Casio’s Compact Grand Piano CGP-700, which features a touch display that gives them the option to choose tones, select rhythms and split and layer sounds, as well as the ability to record and playback music. This digital piano has been engineered to have an authentic piano feel and concert grand piano sound.
The Right Programming
  After school programming can be an ideal opportunity to reinforce STEAM learning in a way that is fun, creative and social. From the robotics club to the orchestra, find out what your school and larger community offer, and encourage your child to get involved. This programming will likely improve grades and test scores, as well as help your child draw connections between disciplines.
  While not all trends are worthy of your attention, the importance of STEAM learning can’t be understated and, as a parent, you can help bolster success in these subjects.