MLB, Discovery Establish Baseball Themed Science, STEM Content to Digital Techbook

Major League Baseball (MLB) and Discovery Education launched a new, multiyear partnership that brings Major League Baseball’s dynamic content into Discovery Education’s Science Techbooks. The partnership launched during a special event in the Baltimore County Public Schools’ Deep Creek Middle School, during which Nicole Sherry, Head Groundskeeper for the Baltimore Orioles, worked alongside area students as they analyzed turf samples taken from Baltimore’s Oriole Park at Camden Yards

Through the collaboration between MLB and Discovery Education, educators using Discovery Education’s Science Techbooks have been empowered with new digital resources that help students connect the world of baseball to key science and STEM concepts through real-world data and exciting gameday experiences that fuel deeper engagement. During this initial phase of the partnership, a variety of MLB-themed content has been integrated into Discovery Education’s STEM Connect and Steaming Plus services.

“Continuously finding new and exciting ways to engage my students in science and STEM lessons is one of the biggest challenges I face as an educator,” says Michael J. Fuchs, the 7th grade Science Teacher whose classroom hosted today’s event at Deep Creek Middle School. “The new Major League Baseball-themed content now available in Discovery Education’s digital services give me some powerful new tools and resources I will use to create immersive science lessons for my students.”

The new resources, which have real-world applications and are now available to teachers and students nationwide through the MLB- Discovery Education Partnership, include:

· Major League Baseball-themed Career Videos

o The videos, which were produced by Discovery Education, showcase a variety of MLB careers and help students connect what they are learning in school to multiple career options in Major League Baseball, such as a groundskeeper, data analyst, and baseball operations executive. These resources will be available in the middle school and high school editions of Discovery Education’s Science Techbook, Discovery Education’s STEM Connect, and the Discovery Education Streaming Plus supplemental content service.

· STEM Project Starters

o Features authentic data from MLB’s StatCast, the state-of-the-art tracking technology that allows for the collection and analysis of a massive amount of baseball data. The baseball-focused STEM Project Starters challenge students to solve real-world questions, such as “how does stadium altitude affect the number of home runs hit there?” or “how does playing surface impact player speed?” These resources will also be available in the middle school and high school editions of Discovery Education’s Science Techbook.

STEM in Action
Leveraging information from baseball-focused STEM career videos and other primary sources, students are challenged to solve authentic problems as a professional in the “real world” would. In this series, they must design a way for players and coaches to communicate in real-time in order to accomplish the following: inform player performance, use data to compare field conditions at different ballparks, and answer questions about subsystems that are needed to run a stadium. These resources will be available in the middle school and high school editions of Discovery Education’s Science Techbook.

In addition, Discovery Education Streaming Plus will be home to a new MLB-focused Content Collection, which will house a variety of baseball-themed curriculum asset — including “best of” videos and images from the MLB archives — all available for educator use and their seamless integration into classroom instruction. Additional dynamic content will be available in Spring of 2019.

“Major League Baseball is excited to launch this innovative partnership with Discovery Education, which reflects our shared goals of engaging students across the country, particularly in science and STEM,” says Barbara McHugh, Senior Vice President of Marketing, Major League Baseball. “We believe this high-quality digital media learning tool will offer educators an opportunity to drive greater understanding of science and STEM, particularly in their application to careers within our sport, and help students discover the beauty of our game year-round.”

“At Discovery Education, we believe a strong background in science and STEM is critical to today’s students’ future success,” says Discovery Education President of K-12 Education Scott Kinney. “Major League Baseball shares this belief, and we are honored to partner with their talented team to bring students and teachers unique, relevant, real-world content that drives the deeper student engagement in science and STEM that we know leads to improved academic achievement.”

Currently used by approximately 5.6 million students across all 50 states and Canada, Discovery Education’s Techbooks are fully interactive, comprehensive digital textbooks. Updated regularly at no cost, all Techbooks are standards-aligned and provide educators a complete digital curriculum that includes detailed lesson plans, hands-on activities, digital simulations, and robust teacher support that immerse students in instruction.

Discovery Education’s Science Techbook series empowers educators to transform science instruction through rich content such as video, audio, text, interactives with hands-on activities, and virtual labs that help educators differentiate instruction and provide a rich and engaging learning experience for students. Additional student features include Spanish/English text-to-speech and leveled reading tools and note-taking and highlighting capabilities. The Science Techbooks series also includes valuable STEM resources including STEM Project Starters that encourage students to connect math, technology, and engineering to their understanding of science concepts to produce creative solutions to real-world problems. In addition, the STEM In Action resources help students connect their work to STEM careers, which promotes a clearer understanding of how skills used in school can be applied to jobs “in the real world.”

Discovery Education’s STEM Connect is a web-based, interdisciplinary K-8 supplemental resource that helps students develop the creative, critical thinking, communication, and collaboration skills they need for success beyond graduation. Featuring flexible, modular learning units, STEM Connect provides students an easy-to-follow educational experience that includes real-world challenges, career connections, and hands-on activities.

Discovery Education Streaming Plus is a comprehensive digital service supplementing instruction across all K-12 curricular areas. The Streaming Plus helps build students’ mastery in interpreting, understanding, and evaluating information through a variety of digital assets including images, primary source documents, podcasts, oral interviews, articles, videos, interactives, and more. A powerful suite of content creation tools within Streaming Plus help students create their own content, and additional tools help teachers and students safely and easily collaborate in real-time on virtual projects.

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