March 2011, What’s New

3/1/2011 1:00:00 AM
Online & Software
AVI-SPL Training Courses

AVI-SPL offers training and professional development classes by SMART-certified trainers that cover topics including SMART Notebook Basics, SMART Table Basics, and SMART Grade Level Specific Notebook Advanced. Participants gain access to an online database library of support materials and receive a video of their training session.
Price: Contact company for pricing.
Category: training

Blackboard Mobile Learn 2.0

Blackboard has expanded access to its mobile learning application with an updated release that lets students and faculty create and upload content to their courses. The redesigned user interface supports threaded discussions and the ability to set “favorites” for easier access and management.
Price: free to Blackboard subscribers
Category: mobile applications

Brief Review App

Pearson’s stand-alone app (for Apple products) features a variety of interactive elements that help high school students prepare for world-history exams and supports any world- or global-history course. Brief Review includes 80 questions in a diagnostic test that covers eight subjects pertaining to the ancient world through today.
Price: free through iTunes
Category: history

Cognite 3.5

Follett Software has upgraded the learning-management system Cognite. The new version includes an enhanced database of content standards, an Android app, and integration with Turnitin software. Teachers and administrators can correlate their own content to the updated standards.
Price: Contact company for pricing.
Category: management

Common Core

This new Web site provides resources to help with the changeover to the new state standards. Beyond explaining the standards, Common Core offers assistance in the form of online workshops with video training modules, among other training tools.
Price: Varies according to service.
Category: school standards

Conceptua Fractions Enhancements

Conceptua Fractions now includes Texthelp Systems’ SpeechStream read-aloud feature with synchronous dual color highlighting. The SpeechStream technology offers read-aloud to users who need auditory support, especially those who struggle to read because of print-based learning differences, students with learning disabilities, English-language learners, and users with low vision.
Price: Contact company for pricing.
Category: math/language

Courier Communication Suite

TH(i)NQ Ed has introduced a hosted communication suite for K–12 schools that provides the benefits of an enterprise-wide solution while ensuring security for the school system. Courier offers shared calendars and folders as well as mobile access and integration with third-party tools and Web sites and is 98 percent E-Rate eligible.
Price: Contact company for pricing.
Category: digital communication

DS Secure

Digital Schools has created a networking and communications application that offers secure advanced router capabilities, secure firewall and anti-virus, spam filters, and more. DS Secure supports the network and communications needs of K–12 schools and offers more than 500 information technology solutions.
Price: Contact company for pricing.
Category: IT security

Easiteach Next Generation for Mac

RM has released a Mac version of its whole-class teaching and learning software that works with interactive whiteboards, slates, projectors, and studentresponse systems. Easiteach Next Generation includes 30 new features, including Easiteach widgets, apps for whiteboards and slates, JWB file support, and more than 250 interactive lessons and graphic organizers.
Price: Contact company for pricing; free trial available.
Category: interactive whiteboard lessons

E-rate Manager for iPhone

The E-Rate compliance services firm Funds for Learning has released the first E-Rate application for the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. The app delivers the functionality and information users are accustomed to receiving from the company’s E-rate Manager service, such as easy navigation and access to up-to-date funding-year information.
Price: free with active E-rate Manager account
Category: education compliance

Google Apps: EDU Category

Google has announced the availability of more than 20 educationspecific apps in the new education category for the Google Apps Marketplace. These include Webbased learning-management systems, such as Haiku; student tools for e-portfolios, like Digication; and learning games, such as BrainPop.
Price: Varies according to app and subscription service.
Category: management

The Green Schools Program

This online teaching resource helps students learn about topics such as recycling, conserving energy, endangered species, and the climate cycle in a fun and interactive way.
Price: Ranges from $3.95 to $12.95; annual subscription, $250.
Category: environment

HP Digital Learning Suite

This new product brings technology solutions together to encourage classroom collaboration and improve management capability. The suite is available for three areas: early childhood and elementary education (pre- K–4), secondary education (grades five through 12), and blended environments and the cloud (pre-K–12).
Price: Contact company for pricing.
Category: management


STI has developed an ad hoc reporting module for its Webbased student-information system. The INFOCUS permits cross-examination of data from various STI sets, such as attendance and grades. Subscribers to STI ’s InformationNO W receive the module as a free upgrade.
Price: free to subscribers
Category: management

iThenticate for Authors and Researchers

iParadigms has released a service that provides authors, researchers, and freelance writers access to their iThenticate plagiarism-prevention software. It lets users cross-reference their manuscripts with a database of scholarly material in scientific, technical, and medical fields to ensure that content is cited accurately before submission.
Price: Contact company for pricing.
Category: writing partners with LEGO

LEGO Education and have teamed up to deliver a curriculum module (geared to grades two through eight) on’s digital learning environment. Teachers can find a module that focuses on key physical science (STEM ) principles, assign the work to students, and track and grade progress online.
Price: Contact company for pricing.
Category: science

Math Fact Fluency

SkillsTutor has released a Common Core State Standards–aligned version of its Math Fact Fluency, an all-digital program that helps students learn basic facts about addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. The program can be used to replace flash cards with individualized instruction and practice sessions.
Price: Contact company for pricing.
Category: math

Microsoft Office 365 for Education

Microsoft has expanded on its Office 365 cloud service to offer cloud productivity software for K–12 schools and universities. Planned for release later this year, Microsoft Office 365 for Education will help students and educators communicate and collaborate from any location on any device.
Price: not yet available
Category: management

MimioStudio software for Mac and Linux

DYMO /Mimio has released a new version of its MimioStudio software for Mac and Linux users. MimioStudio 7 works with the MimioClassroom solution, which includes a device that enables whiteboard interactivity, a document-viewing camera, a student-assessment system, and an ink-capturing system. The software provides teachers with ready-made content for creating interactive lessons.
Price: free
Category: interactive whiteboard lessons

Netop Vision7

The new version of the Vision classroom- management software brings educators a fully redesigned interface that focuses on increased functionality and easier access and navigation. Customers who use the Netop Advantage annual support and upgrade program can receive Vision7 as a free upgrade.
Price: Contact company for pricing.
Category: management

netTrekker Search expansion

netTrekker has partnered with Defined Learning to integrate premium content from the Defined STEM collection of resources into netTrekker Search. The upgrade gives teachers access to the full collection of standards-aligned digital content in the STEM subjects, as well as videos, performance tasks, and simulations.
Price: Contact company for pricing.
Category: STEM

New Dimensions Media Social Media Extras

New Dimensions Media is releasing special access to its library of more than 4,000 educational titles to users of Facebook and Twitter. Subscribers, followers, and “friends” can access frequently updated media clips from shows like Bill Nye the Science Guy and productions by Disney Educational.
Price: free
Category: video

Novachi online learning platform

This free online education platform integrates technology in the K–12 classroom to give teachers greater control over classroom functions by bundling SIS (student-information systems), SMS (student-management systems), and SES (student-enrollment systems) software into one program.
Price: free
Category: management

PLATO Learning AP Edition Courses: U.S. History and Chemistry

PLATO Learning has expanded its courseware to offer new Advanced Placement (AP) edition courses in U.S. History and Chemistry. Aligned with College Board standards, the courses prepare students for the AP exam and for college. All content is available through an online platform, so the courseware is accessible and user-friendly.
Price: Contact company for pricing; subscription basis.
Category: high school curriculum

Read&Write 10 GOLD for Windows

Texthelp has released a new version of its literacy-support software program. New additions include Picture Dictionary, Verb Conjugation Checker, Vocabulary List Builder, Paragraph Translator, and Confusable Word Checker. Other notable enhancements are highlighted in the software’s newfeature video tours.
Price: Single-user licensing starts at $645
Category: reading and writing

Shmoop Online ACT Prep Course

The digital curriculum and test prep company Shmoop has launched an online ACT prep course designed to capture students’ interest by incorporating snippets of popular-culture television into its lessons. The course is available for in-home purchase by individual students or can be purchased through site licenses for schools, districts, and libraries.
Price: in-home use by students, $23; contact company for site-license purchases
Category: testing

SMART Notebook 10.7 collaborative learning software

SMART Technologies’ latest software, available for download in March, supports multi-user writing and common multi-touch gestures, such as pinching, zooming, and tossing. The update enables object awareness, which lets users interact with digital content using their fingers, pens, or erasers anywhere on the surface of the SMART Board 800 series interactive whiteboard.
Price: free download for licensed SMART Notebook software users
Category: interactive whiteboards


Powered by BookheadEd Learning, StudySync offers middle and high school educators an extensive library of texts that help students improve communication and reading skills.
Price: Starts at $175 per teacher (up to 3 classrooms) per year.
Category: reading

Webspiration Classroom

Inspiration Software has launched an online writing, visual thinking, and collaboration tool. Students and teachers can work independently or together on the online environment to develop their writing skills at any time and from any location that has Internet access.
Price: Subscription package pricing available at www.webspiration
Category: management, writing

Wyse Z90

This new thin client solution includes two SuperSpeed USB 3.0 ports along with four USB 2.0 ports. Other updates are more display options (DisplayPort, DVI , and VGA) and support for gigabit Ethernet. The Z90 also offers full support for embedded Windows applications.
Price: Contact company for pricing.
Category: thin clients


RM Education ( released the RM Slate, a new tablet designed for K-12. The RM Slate uses Windows 7 to run Microsoft Office and most other applications written for personal computers. It weighs just two pounds, is a halfinch thick, and features an 11-inch screen. With the multi-touch screen, pen stylus (optional), and handwriting recognition, it is easy for users to input and manipulate data, notes, ideas, and more.

eInstruction ( created a new radio-frequency student-response system, CPS Spark (starts at $1,295). Each device has a built-in student-results screen, and the system includes state standards. Its user-friendly interface instantly integrates with ExamView and MobiView to prevent loss of data and provide realtime reporting data for teachers.

Calypso Systems ( has developed a new offering in its ezRoom line of integrated AV solutions. The ezRoom S300 is the first solution in the line that is fully enclosed in a powered classroom speaker array and includes a built-in wireless microphone. It also has an integrated 32W, multi-input amplifier; a threeport network switch; and a wireless microphone receiver.

Black Box Corp. ( has launched a desktop-virtualization computer sharing system. The VirtuaCore turns one CPU into several workstations by using a single high-power dual- or quad-core processor to serve two or four users. This helps save up to 60 percent on hardware and 60 to 70 percent on energy costs.

The HP ( 100B All-in-One Business Desktop, which starts at $499, allows schools to expand their technology programs while still saving classroom space, thanks to its sleek design (a 20-inch diagonal LCD display console). The PC integrates HD graphics with dual-core processing and can be easily upgraded as needed.

Epson ( has released four projectors designed for classroom use, the PowerLite 92, 93, 95, and 96W (starting at $649). Each upgraded projector features a robust built-in speaker, increased brightness, and HDMI digital connection capability. Additional improvements are the latest 3LCD technology, which provides an energy-efficient light engine, and extended lamp life.

AmpliVox Sound Systems ( has unveiled a line of 20 A/V products designed to meet the needs of multimedia presentations. The carts, workstations, and presentation stations offer a range of connectivity and mobility options. The premier SN3330 Mobile Presentation Station holds a variety of equipment and has four work surfaces.

The mySpark Education Platform, developed by Canadian-based mySpark Technologies (, will offer students tools that are fully integrated with a school’s existing learning management systems. Powered by Android 3.0, students can take interactive notes in digital textbooks on the 10-inch touch screen tablet, which features a 1GHz dual-core processor. The tablet enables social networking, email, and sharing of multimedia.

NewTek ( has released a hardware control surface (CS ) for the TriCaster TC XD850 high-definition portable live-production system, which schools use to provide extended programming and content. The TriCaster TC XD850 CS supplies a physical connection to the system’s functions and effects, allowing operators to carry out commands instantly.

Macmillan ( has released i>clicker2, an enhanced version of its studentresponse- system remote. Improvements include full numeric and alphanumeric functionality, an LCD screen, a battery indicator—it also requires fewer batteries— and an enhanced instructor remote with a laser pointer. The update is still in beta testing and will be available in the fall.

Promethean ( has released its next generation of interactive whiteboards, the ActivBoard 500 Pro series. The new whiteboards can be operated simultaneously by pen and “gesture” touch, supporting more types of learning as well as permitting more collaboration in the classroom.

VMP ( now offers a low-profile projector mount designed with a high-load capacity, the PM-LP. Compliant with most projectors, the mount is equipped with adjustable tilt and pitch, 360-degree rotation, high load capacity, a telescoping mast up to 35 inches, and cable management.

SMART Technologies ( will release the Audio 340 and 360 classroom amplification systems this summer. The speaker systems amplify teachers’ and students’ voices and can be integrated with existing SMART Notebook collaborative-learning software. The Audio 340 and 360 each feature a wireless infrared microphone, four speakers, and a control unit that provides a USB interface and can be used on their own or integrated with existing intercom and paging systems.

Tyco Electronics ( has introduced the Elo TouchSystems 2242L, an open-frame touch monitor available with IntelliTouch Plus Multi-Touch surface acoustic wave touch technology. The Elo 2242L provides a wide-screen display and light transmission for an accurate touch response and bright images.

Energy Efficiency Education Dashboard 2.0 ( is a Web-based device that communicates with a building’s automation system or metering device to access real-time data on the building. The Data Manager collects the live building data and distributes it internally and externally for viewing on the Dashboard. The Dashboard consists of a series of graphical user interface screens that creatively display the organization’s energy efficiencies and green features.

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