Britannica School

4/23/2013 By: MaryAnn Karre

www.britannica.com or Info.eb.com/school • change to: Subscriptions start at $525 for up to 700 students and $0.75 for each additional students. District-wide discounts available.

Britannica School is a new online information solution designed for classrooms in grades preK-12 that provides multimedia resources for lessons, lesson planning, curriculum support, student and teacher research, and homework help.

Quality and Effectiveness: Britannica School streamlines student research while providing multiple opportunities for differentiated learning. Through one portal, students can search articles, images, videos, dictionaries, magazines, Web’s Best Sites (with a snapshot of each Web page), primary sources, and e-books. All of these resources are available through study guides, the Project Gutenberg, and the Year in Review Timeline. At this time, over 140,000 articles and thousands of videos, audios, maps, illustrations, and photos are available to view and download. Many of these items are also aligned with Common Core and state standards. According to Britannica, thousands of articles, images, and multimedia elements are added every quarter.

Ease of Use: Perhaps Britannica School’s most attractive feature is its ability to differentiate content for the individual learner in many ways. There are three levels of material, plus Britannica Learning Zone for preK- 2nd grade, which offers learning materials for every student. All article results are labeled with reading level indicators, which make it easy to select the portal appropriate to each student’s reading, grade, and age level.

Creative Use of Technology: Because it is an online tool, Britannica can be viewed on any Internet-capable device. The display will automatically adjust for optimal viewing on any screen, from the largest computer monitor to an iPad to a smartphone, with equal clarity, readability, and access to all accessibility tools. Students can explore and browse through broad subject headings, search for specific topics, and easily explore related subjects. Once they find an article, a convenient icon allows them to tag favorites, share news via e-mail, add to a bibliography, hear the article read aloud as it is highlighted, and view any related images, videos, or articles.

Suitability for Use in a School Environment: Since students can access resources from a variety of sources, including journals, Web sites, multimedia, and primary sources, in addition to the encyclopedia articles, Britannica School promotes well-rounded research and allows students to make connections between related topics. Lesson planning and interactive resources help teachers supplement lessons with interesting and standards-based materials. By providing a variety of text complexity and multimedia content, Britannica School supports the Common Core standards, which stipulate that students should be able to read complex informational text and collect, analyze, and evaluate diverse text and multimedia resources.

TOP FEATURES

• Supports differentiated instruction and is specially designed to enable students to move to higher or lower reading levels easily
• Provides a wide range of resources through a consolidated search feature
• Delivers current and authentic content, which is edited and reviewed regularly by leading content experts, on subjects that are aligned to the new Common Core state standards, and enables teachers to build lessons around those standards

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