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Press Release: “MOOLAH BEACH” TEACHES STUDENTS THE “VALUE” OF MONEY
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 

“MOOLAH BEACH” TEACHES STUDENTS THE “VALUE” OF MONEY;
TeachNet’s MULTIMEDIA WEB-BASED CURRICULA SHOWCASES WORK OF EXEMPLARY NYC PUBLIC SCHOOL TEACHERS

Real World Financial Concerns Among Topics Addressed in New Online Classroom Curricula From Teachers Network and AT&T Foundation

NEW YORK, NY (April 16, 2003) -- When New York City public school students hear about Mayor Bloomberg’s struggle to balance the massive city budget, they can relate to his enormous task because they are grappling with similar money management issues brought to life in a new curriculum unit called “The Real Way To Moolah Beach!” This innovative classroom program is available online as part of the TeachNet series from Manhattan-based Teachers Network (www.teachersnetwork.org), a non-profit education organization that identifies and connects exemplary teachers across the country.

“Moolah Beach” was created by Anthony Salcedo, a NYC public school teacher and the laptop coordinator at Mott Hall Middle School in upper Manhattan, the first inner city public school to start a laptop program.

As part of the continuing TeachNet program, this web-based curriculum unit introduces middle school teenagers to the concept of economics, and helps them become savvy consumers by teaching practical life skills like balancing a checkbook, managing their allowance and tracking household expenses on a spreadsheet. Sponsored by a grant from the AT&T Foundation, “The Real Way To Moolah Beach!” hits a chord with today’s teens who are captivated by reality TV shows and continuously ask the age-old question, “What does math have to do with real life?” The aim is to teach them real world math skills via hands-on, engaging activities, so they can better manage, invest and keep track of their money.

The TeachNet series (which has been rigorously reviewed to meet high standards and incorporates an important assessment component) showcases the outstanding work of exemplary teachers in some of New York City’s most diverse public schools. Other offerings include “Let’s Rock! Rocks and Minerals,” a geology program developed for third graders in Brooklyn which explores rock formations through web research, hands-on lab experiments, animations, and other original teacher-developed materials. “Sculpting a Modern Art Chair with van Gogh and Gauguin,” infuses a Staten Island middle school art classroom with art history, video, literature, and virtual museum visits, culminating in student-created 3-D chairs in the style of Gauguin and Matisse and other modern artists—worthy of a MOMA installation.

“The TeachNet series provides FREE, web-based curriculum materials that any teacher can adapt to their classroom,” said Ellen Dempsey, President and CEO of Teachers Network. “These are not just text-based lesson plans published on the Internet, they are thematic units of work with dynamic technology components that are geared to specific disciplines, ages, and curricula. So that teachers—whether they’re in New York, Kansas, Texas, or anywhere in the world—can use them in their own classroom. We want to help teachers become leaders in their educational communities through professional development and by giving teachers unlimited access to content so that they can bring it back to their own schools. ”

A grant from the AT&T Foundation makes it possible. “Teachers Network is one of the leaders in exploring new models of technology-based education, and the TeachNet program demonstrates the organization’s profound commitment to professional development for teachers,” said Marilyn Reznick, Vice President, Education Programs at the AT&T Foundation. “The TeachNet program, which we are delighted to support, seeks to improve student learning by helping teachers integrate new media into the classroom. Our two organizations have very similar goals as we seek to revolutionize the way teachers interact with each other and their students, through multimedia delivered via the World Wide Web.”

About TeachNet
TeachNet (www.teachersnetwork.org/TeachNet) was launched in 1998 to support a global network of teachers in designing web-based classroom curriculum, disseminating successful projects, and enhancing their own professional growth. TeachNet provides training, grants, networking, and resource sharing to enthusiastic and dedicated teachers at seven of the Teachers Network affiliate sites worldwide--New York City (NY), Boston (MA), Miami (FL), Santa Barbara County (CA), Westchester BOCES (NY), Wiscasset (ME), and the Republic of Ireland.

About AT&T Foundation
The AT&T Foundation (http://att.com/foundation) invests globally in projects that address a range of public concerns. Emphasis is placed on programs that serve the needs of people in communities where AT&T has a significant presence, initiatives that use technology in innovative ways, and programs that AT&T employees are actively involved with as contributors and/or volunteers. Support is focused on the following program areas: Education, Civic and Community Service, and Arts & Culture.

 

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