District: ODESSAMONTOUR CENTRAL SCHOOL DISTRICT Odessa, NY; an 851-student districtType Of Whiteboard: Promethean ACTIVBoard (the 78-inch ACTIVboard is $1,795), www.prometheanworld.comWhy whiteboards?The district wanted to build 21st-century classrooms that included projectors and sound. Technology director Myron Rumsey says, “Whiteboards speak to every learning style.”We chose these whiteboards because ...“Promethean’s integrated solution was what we were looking for,” says Rumsey. “The company is focused on educators and listens to teachers.” Rumsey liked that regional consultants work with teachers free. “For a small district, that’s fantastic.”What do you like about the whiteboards?“With whiteboards, teachers have all the tools they need,” says Rumsey. “The whiteboards can adapt to it—even if they change their lessons on the fly.”What don’t you like about the whiteboards?“Like any technology, some teachers have a steeper learning curve and can get frustrated.”Have teachers integrated the whiteboards successfully?“Some teachers use them all day long. Our most seasoned teacher, who has been here 35 years, told me that last year was the most exciting year she’d ever had.”Any advice for schools that are considering whiteboards?“We asked teachers to tell us why they wanted one and how they’d use it. A year later, they showed the rest of the teachers what they were doing. That’s the culture you have to create.”
District: ROBSTOWN INDEPENDENT SCHOOL DISTRICT Robstown, TX; a 3,500-student districtType Of Whiteboard: PolyVision (the 78-inch eno is $1,595. Pricing decreases for multiple quantities), www.polyvision.comWhy whiteboards?The goal was to enhance education through technology, says Fred Zamora, the former technology coordinator. “We wanted to gain the attention of the learner, and with a board, all eyes are on the instructor.”We chose these whiteboards because ...“PolyVision proved itself,” says Zamora. “They listened to our needs and promised to deliver as much staff development as we needed—for no charge. We didn’t have to make the product fit into our plan; PolyVision made a product that let us do what we needed to do.”What do you like about the whiteboards?“The boards are very well made, and the construction has been designed for longevity, which helps with technology budgets. The new eno board is supereasy to use and is practically indestructible.”What don’t you like about the whiteboards?“The board response was being confused by our teachers resting their hands on the board as they wrote, but the eno resolved that.”Have teachers integrated the whiteboards successfully?“The teachers recorded a 30 percent jump in test scores. I believe that was at least partly due to teachers using boards, as they amplify teacher instruction.”Any advice for schools that are considering whiteboards?Ask yourself: Will the product enhance education? Will the company provide free tech support? Is staff development provided free or at a nominal cost? How long is the warranty? What are the installation costs? Do teachers want the product?
The ANGEL LMS 7.4 mashup makes it easier to incorporate rich media content from sources such as YouTube and Picasa into courses. The new release also enables incorporating RSS feeds into courses. With ANGEL LMS 7.4, several schools can be managed from a central location through a new institutional directory.Price: Varies Category: management system
The BRAVO! software suite features four customizable training game templates that offer a dynamic way to present any content. The suite is available in three formats (classroom, Web, and LMS) and comprises the following games: Quiz Show, Billionaire, ShowDown, and Spin Off. BRAVO! works with any instructional content and allows trainers to present in any language. Price: Call for pricing Category: game builder