Ginger Software, a program for spelling and grammar correction, now works with Internet Explorer. In addition, the new version of Ginger is more accessible, providing customizable interface settings and progress reporting to track mistakes and illustrate student progress. Students can change display attributes such as background color and font style to complement their abilities and preferences. Price: Subscriptions start at $145 for three workstations, with volume and multiple-year subscription discounts available.Category: language arts, assistive tech
LargeSoftware has announced a price special that will provide customers a discount on the popular PC Tune-Up 2.0 software when combined with the purchase of the company’s Password Manager. The PC Tune-Up 2.0 product optimizes users’ computers and improves computer speed by up to 55 percent.Price: $29.95; PC tune-up added on for $9.95Category: utility
TEL.A.VISION has relaunched its curriculum with a focus on special-education and at-risk students. Schools can now purchase a yearly subscription for each special-education student that includes group accounts for all other classrooms at no additional charge. This new site-license program covers use by all students, teachers, and administrators at a school. The site license includes a curriculum guide, lesson plans, and online media so that each lesson can be taught with a computer and a projector and/or an interactive whiteboard. Price: Contact company for pricing. Category: special education, video production
allows administrators to transfer student-information-system (SIS) data to a handheld device. Because data can be accessed from a handheld immediately, the information may be used for everyday discipline, student-conduct incidents and histories, emergency preparedness, and security. Each user is issued his or her own passkey, and data can be synchronized as often as needed.PROS: The Principalm+ transfers information without using a third-party server. The software transfers data to most handhelds, including smartphones, BlackBerry smartphones, and PDAs, and soon to Apple iPhones. Users can add customizable fields. The data-download sets can be customized, such as downloading just phone numbers and health information for a teacher going on a field trip.CONS: None.OVERALL EVALUATION: One of the biggest problems administrators have is that all the student data we collect are never where we need them when we need them. Principalm+ solves this problem. Administrators can use Principalm+ to check the discipline record of a student at the site of an incident rather than having to wait until they get back to the office. They can look up a locker combination on the spot, or even a parent’s phone number. This type of application is long overdue.www.discoverysoftware.comRetail price: Based on per-student, per-module model.
Used in tandem with schooldistrict learning-management systems, uBoost helps educators reward positive student behavior with points and performance- based honor badges. Points can be used for charitable causes or can be redeemed for merchandise or gift cards. uBoost Version 2.0 includes new parental-notification features. uBoost sends daily email notification to parents regarding the points their children receive, as well as the accomplishments and behaviors for which they have been rewarded. Price: Contact company for pricing. Category: behavior monitoring
The Achiever! online assessment and instruction program, used to evaluate student performance on state standards, now offers test questions and tutorials in Spanish or English. Students can change the text on their screen or select audio narrations in either Spanish or English and then toggle between the two as needed. With the new Spanish support, Spanish-speaking students can be even more self-directed, because they can read test questions and answers in Spanish and go through the tutorials, including all the on-screen animations, illustrations, text, and audio narrations, in either language. Price: Contact company for pricing. Category: assessment
The new eBeam Edge is the next-generation hardware version of Luidia’s eBeam interactive whiteboard system. Like previous eBeam systems, it works with standard computers, projectors, and a variety of input devices to transform existing whiteboards and writing surfaces into interactive whiteboards. Users can present, annotate, and interact with projected content while capturing the results, which can be shared over local networks and the Internet. This means that teachers can use the device as they would any other interactive whiteboard, but since it will work on any surface, they can also project onto, for example, a map or another image and “write” on it, something they cannot do on a traditional interactive whiteboard.PROS: The Luidia eBeam is lightweight (less than four ounces) and easily fits in a laptop case. The receiver device covers an area of up to five feet by nine feet, requires only one pen, and is extremely easy to set up and calibrate. The software has an easy-to-use, unique navigation interface. It uses the same software as the Luidia document camera and the Luidia Interactive tablet and interfaces with these devices.CONS: None.OVERALL EVALUATION: All the Luidia products use the same software and interface, so they’re beneficial and economical when it comes to professional development. Also, the eBeam Edge uses a single pen and “electronic color,” a more sensible approach than that of other whiteboard systems.www.luidia.com4Retail price: $899.95