Software & Online
CDW-G CLOUD PLANNING SERVICES
CDW-G announced an extension of its cloud computing competencies, offering a comprehensive set of services that helps customers develop a customized plan for leveraging the cloud. CDW-G Cloud Planning Services enable organizations to select from a variety of fee-based advisory services that offer insights and recommendations for developing a cloud strategy. The offering combines consulting and diagnostic services to help customers determine which of their applications and workloads make the most sense to move to the cloud.
CLASSDOJO EMPATHY SERIES
ClassDojo and Making Caring Common (MCC), a project of the Harvard Graduate School of Education (HGSE), recently announced an initiative designed to help students learn about the power of empathy. Through the initiative, ClassDojo and HGSE MCC created an original series of animated, short films along with discussion guides that will be available to all teachers, parents, and students on ClassDojo. Available online and in-app, the Empathy series features Pixar-like animated video shorts that star ClassDojo’s monsters as they prepare for a school play that has everyone preoccupied with their own concerns. Each video is paired with a set of projects and discussion guides for class and home, to help students build a deeper understanding of the concept of empathy.
CTE CURRICULUMS AND CERTIFICATIONS
CEV Multimedia released several new CTE curriculums and certifications: Health Science Curriculum, created in partnership with Covenant Health to offer a curriculum for rapidly growing healthcare industry; Law Enforcement Curriculum, created in collaboration with the Lubbock Police Department; Architecture, Construction, Transportation, and Manufacturing Curriculum, designed to educate students in variety of jobs that require skilled workers; and Culinary Meat Selection and Cookery Certification, created with help from the American Meat Science Association for students who want to go into culinary fields.
EDTHENA COMMENT STATS
Edthena, the video classroom observation platform for teacher development, now features a Comment Stats tool that transforms the data from comments left on teachers’ uploaded videos into a visual, data-driven way for teachers (and their coaches) to gauge whether the professional development is improving teaching practices. Using Edthena, teachers can upload videos of their classroom instruction and then share those videos with coaches and colleagues who provide timestamped comments. The system automatically generates reports and graphs that show comments by their type – questions, suggestions, strengths, or notes – and by any associated professional framework tags.
Generation Global provides practical support for educators to guide the next generation of young people in becoming global citizens by peacefully navigating cultural and religious differences through meaningful dialogue. With Generation Global’s complimentary platform and curriculum, American students learn alongside students from around the world. Generation Global’s classroom resources can be integrated into any lesson but fit especially well into those focused on diverse cultures like history, geography, and social studies. Using the online learning community, teachers can group their students into facilitated conversations with other young people around the world, creating a safe and monitored environment that encourages open dialogue.
Ideaphora launched an online concept mapping environment for classroom use, designed to help teachers seamlessly apply concept mapping to digital content to create deeper learning experiences for their students. Teachers can assign resources or allow students to identify their own to use in their maps for activities such as note-taking, brainstorming, research, reinforcing a lesson, or introducing a new topic. As students interact with digital content, they discover key concepts and build connections among them in a visual map, moving them up through the top levels of Bloom’s Revised Taxonomy.
LIFELIQE VR MUSEUM
Lifeliqe, a visual learning platform incorporating virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and interactive 3D content, launched its first VR experience - Lifeliqe VR Museum. The free version is available exclusively on Viveport, HTC Vive’s content platform, with the premium version coming by the end of the year. Lifeliqe VR Museum is built on more than 1,000 interactive 3D models that are already available in a mobile version of Lifeliqe. The VR experience takes students into a virtual world where they can roam freely among dinosaurs or visit an ancient home. The explore function enables users to study interactive 3D models from K-12 sciences in a virtual lab while learning about different parts in great detail.
Matrox introduced Monarch LCS, an easy-to-use, two-input lecture capture appliance that accepts video from any SDI or HDMI camera and presentation content over HDMI with computers. The inputs can be encoded independently and in sync for use with multi-stream video players, or they can be combined prior to encoding in a variety of production layouts for use with standard video players. Capable of both recording and streaming in H.264, Monarch LCS can be integrated into video management systems such as Opencast and Kaltura, and learning management systems such as Moodle.
MINECRAFT: EDUCATION EDITION
As of November 1st, the full version of Minecraft: Education Edition is available for purchase. The Web site www.education. minecraft.net includes lesson plans and a new Minecraft Mentors program that connects educators with others experienced in teaching with Minecraft. New features include Classroom Mode, a companion app for Minecraft: Education Edition that lets teachers interact with students and manage settings from a central user interface. The company will continue to update the game to include features from other editions of Minecraft. All of the latest updates to the Minecraft: Windows 10 Edition beta will be included, such as leads and horses, additional player skins, and an updated user interface.
Collabco’s myday is a personalized academic organizer that provides schools, colleges, and universities with a customized student portal that keeps students engaged and organized. The platform incorporates data from a school’s LMS and SIS, as well as things like laundry scheduling, bus routes, low balances, and push notifications. myday is available in a browser to support desktop and laptop computers, as well as through a personalized mobile app. Students can access email, social media, news feeds, and academic sites with one login. They can also customize their portal to include whatever information they find most useful.
ODYSSEYWARE AND WEBBALIGN
Odysseyware has become a WebbAlign Depth of Knowledge Partner. Dr. Norman Webb developed the Depth of Knowledge (DOK) Framework to analyze alignment between standards and assessments and for teachers’ professional development. Dr. Webb and his team have trained Odysseyware’s curriculum and product design teams on the most upto- date approaches to applying Webb’s (DOK) framework to curriculum and assessments. WebbAlign works with educators, along with curriculum and assessment developers, to help ensure that assessments match the rigor expected in corresponding learning expectations. The DOK framework will be applied to existing Odysseyware curriculum and assessment items, and will also be leveraged to inform the creation of new items.
Capstone has released pivotEd, its newest digital content offering that includes more than 500 pre-built science, social studies, and language arts lessons for students in grades 3–6. Using pivotEd, teachers can instantly lock, unlock, and deploy interactive lessons to keep students on task. pivotEd’s smallgroup activities encourage students to work together to accomplish tasks. Students can submit their responses using their devices, while teachers simultaneously monitor student interaction, incorporate students’ answers into the lesson, and provide immediate digital feedback without disrupting instruction. pivotEd is fully integrated with Google Classroom, and includes professional development resources to help teachers implement effective digital strategies in their classrooms.
PRESENCELEARNING AND THE WOODCOCK-JOHNSON IV
PresenceLearning recently introduced psychoeducational assessments, administered live and online by fully credentialed school psychologists. PresenceLearning is also the only remote provider of the Woodcock-Johnson IV (WJ IV) Cognitive and Achievement batteries. The WJ IV is used to determine a student’s strengths and weaknesses for intervention and/or eligibility for special education. Using PresenceLearning’s live, online therapy environment, WJ IV tests are administered via secure, interactive video by licensed school psychologists, helping schools conduct initial, re-evaluation, and triennial assessments quickly and effectively.
PROMETHEAN PLANET JOINS CLASSFLOW
Promethean Planet, an interactive whiteboard community for educators, is now part of the collaborative teaching and learning software community, ClassFlow. All lessons and resources designed for interactive whiteboards can now be shared across a connected classroom and sent to students’ Chromebooks, tablets, and laptops using ClassFlow. With ClassFlow, Promethean Planet users can search among thousands of teacher-created lessons and resources now available in the ClassFlow Marketplace. The resources support a wide range of file formats including PowerPoint presentations, Microsoft Word documents, ActivInspire FlipCharts, and Adobe PDF files.
Pearson announced new capabilities in WriteToLearn, its automatically scored, Web-based tool for building writing and reading comprehension skills for students in grades 4-12. WriteToLearn also now features 39 new literature-based prompts for essay writing. Each of the new essay writing prompts in WriteToLearn is linked to at least one piece of literature, and all support college and career readiness. WriteToLearn lets students practice their essay and summary writing skills and expand their vocabulary. The tool instantly assesses student work by evaluating the meaning of text, not just grammar and spelling.
YOU CHOOSE 2016
PBS KIDS recently launched You Choose 2016, a Web site for ages 6-8 providing kids with relevant, nonpartisan democracyrelated information through interactive exploration and video. The site aims to teach kids about the Presidential election process in an entertaining and fun way. Kids can “meet the candidates” and learn fun and important facts about them, collect trading cards of past presidents and their spouses, create a digital campaign poster, and watch videos featuring PBS KIDS characters and new role models discussing democracy, election, and government – related topics.
Bulb is an easy-to-use digital portfolio for teachers and students where they can create, reflect, and share projects, assignments, lessons and more. Bulb portfolios allow students to track and demonstrate their growth over time. Additionally, user accounts are not tied to specific schools or learning management systems, enabling students to build up their portfolio throughout their school experience and beyond.
ScholarChip announced ScholarConnect, a new iOS and Android mobile app that lets parents track their children’s attendance, lateness, and meal purchases from any mobile device. Parents can also monitor and add funds into cafeteria accounts from checking or savings accounts, debit cards, or credit cards. The ScholarChip smart ID card protects students’ confidentiality and allows all students to simply tap to pay. Students use their ScholarChip One Card throughout the school day, so attendance and cafeteria purchase information is recorded electronically and automatically.
EPSON IPROJECTION APP AND CREATIVE PRINT APP
(www.epson.com/projectors (opens in new tab))
Epson announced the availability of the Epson iProjection App for Chromebooks, enabling students and teachers to wirelessly display content from Chromebooks on Epson BrightLink interactive projectors and most PowerLite projectors. With the Epson Multi-PC Projection with Moderator function and the Epson iProjection App for Chromebooks, the teacher can display up to four Chromebook notebook computers simultaneously from a maximum of 50 connected devices for an engaging and collaborative classroom experience. Epson also announced enhancements to its Creative Print App. Featuring a direct link to Instagram on the home screen, Epson Creative Print 4.1 expands customization features allowing users to place text within a collage and customize fonts and collage backgrounds. The updated Creative Print app connects to iCloud, allowing access to photos stored on multiple computers, tablets, and phones.
GO MATH! GO
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) released GO Math! GO, a playful learning app available for the iPhone and iPad that offers kids ages 3-7 an interactive math experience. The app takes students on a learning journey filled with friendly monsters, lovable animals, and adventurous heroes that will inspire them to master math, at home or on the go. Each grade level offers over 1,500 math problems addressing key topics such as addition, subtraction, and measuring for Kindergarten; graphs, charts, and geometry for first grade; and money, time, and fractions for second grade.
MyScript’s Nebo app lets users convert notes into digital form for searching, sharing, and storage. Additionally, users can write and solve complex mathematical equations in the app, draw diagrams, and sketch pictures. Nebo features robust handwriting recognition technology, simplifying the process of digitizing written notes.
The EMX-I-AMP (www.hallresearch.com/page/emx-i-amp) is a 4K HDMI audio extractor with built-in 50 watt audio amplifier for direct connection to 8 ohm speakers, and a separate stereo input for connecting a wireless microphone or audio player. The device is ideal for any setting where a controllable audio amplifier is required. HDMI audio is mixed with the analog audio input and amplified. Users can control output volume via LAN, front panel buttons, RS-232 commands, or by using a remote wall-plate with a rotary knob. An independent RS-232 output port available so that users can control other devices such as TVs or projectors. Additionally, the EMX-I-AMP incorporates a user-friendly internal Web site where users can control volume, mute and un-mute the audio, and turn the connected display on and off using the Web interface.
Spectrum Industries, Inc. (www.spectrumfurniture.com) announced the addition of the Flex Flip Tables to the Expressions line of product offerings in laminates and metals. The Flex Flip Table can meet the needs of any collaboration layout, while ADA accessible options allow teachers to engage any user in any environment. The flip top and locking casters provide quick and easy room reconfiguration and storage capabilities. The Flex Flip Table comes in multiple size options and can be purchased together with an optional power module and wire management kit.
Epson America, Inc. (www.epson.com (opens in new tab)) unveiled the next-generation Expression Premium XP-640 Small-in-One. The model offers a complete wireless solution, including Wi-Fi Direct to easily print directly from an iPad, iPhone, Android tablet, or smartphone, without a router. The XP-640 is compatible with the Epson Creative Print App, allowing users to print photo collages, personalized coloring book pages, and stationery directly from personal photos as well as from Facebook and Instagram accounts. The printer is also compatible with Epson Connect, a suite of solutions that includes Email Print, Epson Creative Print, Epson iPrint, Epson Remote Print, and Epson Scan to Cloud services and works through Wi-Fi direct or a wireless connection.
wePresent (www.wepresentwifi.com) announced a firmware upgrade to their wireless presentation devices which will allows support of Apple iOS 10, optimizes them for macOS Sierra, and provides a number of device-side optimizations and behindthe- scenes changes meant to improve the wePresent user experience for everyone. wePresent offers solutions that enable end-users to move away from cables and connections toward wireless presentations and collaboration. wePresent allows up to 64 users to connect and give a wireless presentation, in full 1080p HD, to the display from ANY device, and is compatible with PC, Mac, iOS, Chromebook, and Android. The new firmware is available for both wePresent’s WiPG-1600 and as well as the WiPG-2000.
RoboKind (www.robokindrobots.com) released a humanoid robot designed to expand access and engagement for African-American students in K-12 STEM education. The robot, with African-American likeness, will deliver the Robots4STEM curriculum designed in partnership with Quadrant 4 System Corporation (QFOR). Students in third grade and beyond gain foundational skills in coding and computer science through programming the robot, Jett. The program is designed to support educators with or without experience in computer science in implementing Robots4STEM, all while meeting competency-based math and science curriculum standards.
As a result of a new partnership with EXO U, Samsung (www.samsung.com/us (opens in new tab)) will bundle the Ormiboard (www.ormiboard.com) with new and current educational packages as well as offer it as a standalone feature to current Samsung customers. Samsung will incorporate Ormiboard functionality on large-format displays, interactive displays, Chromebooks, Android devices, and more. Ormiboard is device-agnostic digital learning environment that transforms any device into an easy-to-use white-boarding tool. Ormiboard also features a suite of device-management tools that have been customized for Samsung. Educators will be able to lock and unlock students’ Samsung devices, specific pages, and more—helping keep students on task during lessons while still personalizing their experiences with content and activities.
Tripp Lite (www.tripplite.com) introduced two USB 3.0 docking stations, designed for Microsoft Surface and Surface Pro tablets. These new docking stations expand the capabilities of the Surface by adding Gigabit Ethernet access, three USB 3.0 ports, and an optional HDMI port. They are compatible with all Surface models and versions and feature a low-profile design that fits onto the back of a Surface kickstand. The USB 3.0 hubs support data transfer rates of up to 5 Gbps and are backward-compatible with previous USB generations. The docking stations are plug-and-play, no software installation required.
Leka (www.leka.io) is an app-enabled robotic smart ball designed for children with special needs that aims to change the way children learn, play, and progress. Thanks to its sensors, Leka can detect and respond to a child’s interaction through autonomous behaviors. For instance, Leka appears sad and turns a red color if a child throws it to the ground. It also targets specific needs of children such as motor, cognitive, social, and emotional disorders.