Education notebook

3 state students competing in NYC

A team of three students from the Arkansas School for Mathematics, Sciences and the Arts in Hot Springs will compete this week in the New York University Cyber Security Awareness Week games.

Team members, who are playing for a share of more than $450,000 in scholarships, are seniors William Yang of Little Rock, Hayden Aud of Maumelle and junior Martin Boerwinkle of El Dorado.

The Arkansas students will use computer-security skills to solve a fictitious murder. Evidence from the victim's cellphone and the use of the bitcoin are among the elements to be considered in a six-hour quest to solve the crime.

The Arkansas School for Mathematics, Sciences and the Arts team is one of 10 teams from the United States and two from the United Arab Emirates who will compete in the games at the New York University's Tandon School of Engineering.

A record 800 teams from across the world competed in the online preliminary round, according to the Arkansas school. The Arkansas team finished in a tie for first place among 14 American teams and won a tiebreaker to earn its spot in New York.

The Arkansas school is a taxpayer-supported residential school for gifted high school juniors and seniors from across the state.

LR history teacher nabs state honors

Steven Helmick, a former Little Rock School District teacher of the year, was recently named the 2015 Arkansas History Teacher of the Year.

Helmick, now assistant principal at Don Roberts Elementary School, was a fifth-grade social studies teacher at the same school when Little Rock School District curriculum specialist Laura Beth Arnold nominated him for the award.

The state honor is part of the National History Teacher of the Year Award program, which supports the teaching of American history in classrooms across the United States. The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History is a co-sponsor of the award program.

Each year, one kindergarten through 12th grade American history teacher is chosen from each state, the District of Columbia, Department of Defense schools and U.S. territories.

Helmick is now invited to attend the 2016 Gilder Lehrman Teacher Seminar.

Additionally, as a result of Helmick's selection, the library at Roberts Elementary received a collection of history books and other materials from the institute, and Roberts was named a Gilder Lehrman Affiliate School.

Panel gives grant to English teacher

Brycial Williams, a kindergarten teacher at Central Elementary in Forrest City, is the recipient of a Teacher for the Dream grant from the National Council of Teachers of English.

Williams is the first recipient of the award in the state. He was honored for it at last week's Arkansas Curriculum Conference in Little Rock.

The National Council's grant program is an effort to encourage its state affiliate organizations to develop initiatives aimed at recruiting or retaining English/language arts teachers of color.

As a result of the grant, Williams will work with mentors from the Arkansas Council of Teachers of English/Language Arts executive board to develop presentations for encouraging people who are members of minority groups to become English teachers.

Metro on 11/12/2015

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