Education briefly

MSU grad wins teaching award

Minot State University alumni Brenda Maus Morman, a first-grade teacher in Wahpeton, is the winner of the North Dakota Geographic Alliance’s 2012 Warren Kress Outstanding Geography Teacher Award.

Morman has taught for 34 years and integrates geography into her daily teaching.

“My students love to find places on the map and globe,” she said in a press release issued by Minot State. “So, I integrate geography into my daily teaching and help students explore maps and globe. During writing activities, I may ask, ‘Where could your story take place besides Wahpeton?’ My students learn about cultural geography by celebrating the Chinese New Year, Thanksgiving, St. Patrick’s Day and Christmas around the world and through units that use maps to take a trip to Alaska and to places where penguins live.”

Morman has completed a variety of programs sponsored by NDGA. In addition, she received the Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers Award in 2004-2005 and 2005-2006, and the N.D. Reading Council Literary Award. She was also the N.D. Ag in the Classroom recipient and attended the National Ag in the Classroom Conference.

Ward spelling bee set for Feb. 20

The Ward County Spelling Bee will be held at 10 a.m. Feb. 20 on the third floor of the Minot State University Student Center.

The competition is open to fifth- through eighth-graders in the county.

A written competition will begin in the morning followed by an oral round that will start at about 1 p.m. The winner and runner-up in the oral round will advance to the state competition on March 23 in Bismarck.

Observation of the event is open to the public.

ASNE?offers journalism class

The American Society of News Editors is offering an expenses-paid, two-week summer journalism institute for secondary school teachers.

One hundred seventy-five teachers will be selected to attend the 2013 Reynolds High School Journalism Institute. Applications should be postmarked by March 1. Online applications are available at (

The institute teaches reporting, editing, multimedia, layout and design, journalism ethics, First Amendment rights and student press law. Teachers return to their classrooms with the knowledge and skills to invigorate their school journalism programs and produce top-notch online and print news publications

Institutes will be held at Arizona State University in Phoenix from June 16-28; University of Texas at Austin from June 16-28; Kent State University at Kent, Ohio, from July 7-19; University of Nevada at Reno from July 14-26; and the University of Missouri at Columbia from July 14-26.

There is no cost to the teacher or school. Teachers from schools that lack online student media or have struggling journalism programs are especially encouraged to apply. Transportation, lodging, meals, materials, tuition and continuing education credits are paid by a grant from the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation.

Mathcounts slated for Wednesday

The annual Ward County Mathcounts competition for seventh- and eighth-graders will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday on the third floor of the Minot State University Student Center.

A written test will be given in the morning, followed by an countdown round that will begin at about 1 p.m.

Observation of the math competition is open to the public.

Game bolsters disaster skills

“Disaster Hero,” a free emergency preparedness game, was developed by The American College of Emergency Physicians and Legacy Games as part of a grant administered by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security/Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Disaster Hero includes a variety of different game genres, tailored to the specific type of educational content to be conveyed. For example, arcade and puzzle gameplay is used to teach how to prepare for a possible natural disaster and how to stay safe afterward, such as determining escape routes and meeting places, avoiding common hazards or shutting off utilities. Hidden object gameplay is used to teach what items belong in an emergency supply kit, for example batteries, flashlight and canned food. Along the way, players will be quizzed on the information presented through gameplay.

In the game, the dashing “Dante Shields” is the original Disaster Hero, founder of the Disaster Arena that recruits the best prospects to lead the next generation of the Disaster Hero Squad. Points, trophies and achievements are earned throughout the experience and displayed on the Disaster Hero website, along with additional downloadable learning activities targeted to teachers and parents. For more information and to play, go to (

ACT?registration for April 13 open

Registration is now open for the April 13 administration of the ACT college and career readiness exam. Students who want to take the exam on this date must register by March 8.

Students can register online at ( or by mail. Paper registration forms can be obtained from school counselor offices or by requesting a registration packet from ACT. Students must submit a photo of themselves to register for the exam.

The ACT is a curriculum-based achievement exam. It measures the academic skills and knowledge that students have learned in school and need to know to be ready for first-year college courses.

The ACT comprises four multiple-choice subject tests – English, mathematics, reading and science – and takes about three hours, plus breaks, to complete. An optional writing test, which takes an additional 30 minutes, is also available. Students who want to take the writing portion should register for the ACT Plus Writing.

The cost to take the ACT (with no writing test) is $35. The cost to take the ACT Plus Writing is $50.50. Fee waivers are available to qualified students who can’t afford the registration fee. Students should apply for a fee waiver through their school counselor’s office.

All four-year colleges and universities across the United States accept ACT scores for admission purposes. During registration, students may select up to four colleges or universities to receive their score reports at no additional charge. ACT sends score reports only when authorized to do so by the student.

Each test taker receives an ACT score report that includes a wide variety of information to assist with course planning, college readiness, career planning and college admissions.