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Califone

Califone has announced the Hearing Safe line of specially designed hearing-protection gear. Ideal for school industrial-art classes, such as metals and wood-shop courses, all products are designed to block out potentially damaging noises. The line comprises two product categories, providing educators, students, and professionals with a safety tool for managing listening habits.
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Califone New April

Califone (www.califone.com) announces the extension of its popular Listening First (left) line of headphones and Deluxe Multimedia Stereo (right) line of headsets. Both product lines are now available as classroom packs. The Listening First Headphones line has been extended to include a 12-pack of blue headphones and a 12-pack of animal-themed (four each of bear, panda, and tiger) headphones. The Deluxe Multimedia Stereo headset line includes a 10-pack that also has a foamlined, heavy-duty storage case.

Califone International, Inc.

Califone International, Inc. (www.califone.com) has upgraded and expanded its line of monaural and stereo listening centers. Designed for use with computers, the learning centers are now available with six positions in addition to the existing four-position listening center, which includes six or eight stereo headphones (2924AVPS). Each center can expand to accommodate additional students with the 10-position jack box with volume control (1210AVPS). Monaural listening centers are available with six positions, which include six or eight stereo headphones (2924AVP) and an eight-position jack box with volume control (1218AVPY). The 1218AVPY is now standard on all monaural centers and replaces the 1208AVPY, which did not feature individual volume controls.

Califone www.califone.com has released its

7-Port USB Hub, which lets users connect up to five devices on the front ports and up to two devices on the rear ports. The USB Hub can be used to download digital content from a computer (Windows or Mac) to up to seven devices, such as an MP3 player, at the same time. This hub is ideal for transferring content, audio recordings, and other data to any device with a USB port, including the Califone MP3 Player.

Califone Launches Listening First™ Headsets

Califone International, Inc. announces the launch of its Listening First™ Headsets, an extension of the popular Listening First headphone line. The Califone Listening First Headsets are made with rugged ABS plastic (for added student safety), ambient noise-reducing earcups, and are available in three color choices or three animal themes. The Listening First Headsets to support computer-based and mobile learning activities and are ideal for use in kindergarten and primary grades as well as with special needs students. In addition, the Listening First Headsets help students build speaking and listening skills, which are critical components under the English Language Arts (ELA) portion of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS).

INTEL CLASSMATE PC

The Classmate PC is the latest version of the netbook designed specifically for K-12 use. The new model combines a compact netbook with a user-friendly tablet, making this product ideal for school 1:1 programs. The most dramatic upgrade is the convertible aspect: Rotate the display 180 degrees and fold. The netbook is now a fully functional tablet with touch-screen capabilities. The screen also automatically adjusts from portrait to landscape modes.PROS: The new hardware design features and software offerings show considerable thought and consideration for the student-user experience. Most impressive were the swivel screen, which turns the PC into a tablet; the Blue Dolphin interface, which brings the learning tools right to the student without their having to wrestle with Windows; and the Webcam, which works in both tablet and clamshell mode. The handle and rugged casing should give teachers comfort in handing this machine over to children.CONS: The student reviewer had a hard time figuring out how turn the device on at first (lower-left-hand-side switch). The touch screen is more difficult to use for those who are used to a “feather touch” screen. Intel developers explained that the “palm-resistant” technology makes it possible for students to write in applications using the tablet mode. Depending on the application, this can be either a hassle or a feature. The problems were mostly solved when using the included stylus or fingernail. Note to developers: Get a tether on that stylus!OVERALL IMPRESSION: An impressive upgrade of an already strong product. Switching the device from clamshell to tablet and back again is more than a novelty. The design gives the Classmate much greater versatility as a learning tool.www.intel.com Price: $200–$500 (price set by OEMs depending on configuration, etc.)—Kevin and Nora Hogan

Turning Technologies

announced the newest addition to its ResponseCard keypad product line, ResponseCard RF LCD. The new “clicker” device provides students with additional feedback during interactive polling via a small LCD screen. The LCD screen offers visual confirmation of selected response, channel setting, and battery life.www.turningtech nologies.com

ViewSonic www.viewsonic.com launched its new VG27

series of widescreen LCD monitors. The line includes the 24” VG2427wm, the VG2227wm, and the 20” VG2027wm widescreen monitors. The monitors are all Energy Star certified and can be set to ECO Mode, which saves up to 40 percent in energy consumption. Generous height and tilt adjustments, coupled with a 360-degree swivel base, provide adjustments for optimal head and neck positioning. The products also have built-in stereo speakers supported with the latest SRS Premium Sound technology.

AbleNet www.ablenetinc.com has released the improved

Impulse Bluetooth technology access product. New features include software updates and translated instructions for international distribution. The enhanced Impulse now offers a 24-hour battery life, nearly double that of the previous, 13-hour battery. The new design of the product features the same 1.9-inch size but includes a curvaceous shape and a repositioned charge jack to accommodate the new battery.