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An Educator's Guide to Technology and the Web
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May 24, 2011

Table of Contents

Pearson, TakingITGlobal Collaborate on myWorld TIGed
Internet@Schools Xtra News: Complete May/June 2011 Internet@Schools Contents Now Available Online—Full Text, Text+Graphics, PDF
Free Resources: Learning.com's One-Day Summer Professional Development Teacher Camps
OverDrive Announces Acceleration of Global eBook Distribution to K-12 & Higher Ed Channels
Encyclopaedia Britannica Releases 'Snakes', Multimedia App for iPhone, iPad, and iPod
Curriculum Associates Creates New Reading and Math Assessment geared to Common Core State Standards
Gale Partners with TheGreenInterview.com to Bring Videos and Content to GREENR
Cool Links: Why the first true post-PC era device isn't the iPad. It's the Chromebook.
Follett Launches Textbook and Device Management Package
EBSCO Publishing Releases New iPhone Application

Pearson, TakingITGlobal Collaborate on myWorld TIGed

Through a new initiative, called myWorld TakingITGlobal for Educators (myWorld TIGed), from Pearson and TakingITGlobal (TIG), educators have immediate access to digitally driven content that makes global collaboration a reality for America's middle schoolers with the click of a mouse.

The new resource enables educators to directly connect their students with peers in more than 100 countries to discuss and explore hot-button social issues. With headlines ranging from the death of Osama bin Laden to the aftermath of Japan's tsunami, and the floods in the southern states, students are now able to share their opinions and personal experiences with new-found classmates around the world.

The myWorld TIGed project facilitates the inclusion of global perspectives in the classroom by providing a free online community along with a collection of resources for schools implementing Pearson's middle grades social studies curriculums, myWorldGeography and myWorldHistory.

For teachers, the myWorld TIGed platform offers an online learning community, a   variety of educational resources, and a suite of digital tools designed to deepen engagement in the myWorld programs. Participating teachers can access educational interactive games, blogs, maps, image galleries, discussion boards, internet safety resources, teacher training tutorials, and case studies of best practices.

With myWorld TIGed, teachers can monitor student postings and share student work with parents, school administrators, and other myWorld TIGed members.

Learn more at http://myworld.tigweb.org

Source: Pearson, Pearson, www.pearsonschool.com/; TakingITGlobal. www.tigweb.org/

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Internet@Schools Xtra News: Complete May/June 2011 Internet@Schools Contents Now Available Online—Full Text, Text+Graphics, PDF

The May/June 2011  issue of Internet @ Schools magazine is all there now at our website www.InternetAtSchools.com. In addition to the free May/June reviews and the free full-text cover story (From Social Networking to Academic Networking … A Paradigm Shift), which have been available since the beginning of the month, now the remaining features, columns, and other May/June content have been processed. Some are free to view. Others are available in a variety of formats -- Full Text, Text+Graphics, and Page Image PDF -- on a pay-to-view basis by way of Information Today, Inc.'s InfoCentral and ProQuest Archiver.

For access, see the May/June 2011 issue contents HERE, click on any article, and follow the links.

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Free Resources: Learning.com's One-Day Summer Professional Development Teacher Camps

Learning.com will offer free one-day professional development Teacher Camps throughout the United States this summer to help teachers become proficient at creating digital lessons and activities for their students.

Teachers will learn how to create engaging digital lessons and activities, and how to use the Learning.com platform to find and use other teachers' best practices, then assign those lessons with their students. In addition, each teacher will receive 30 student licenses for one of Learning.com's curriculum solutions in math, science, or technology literacy.

Last summer, more than 600 educators participated in Learning.com's camps and came away equipped to use and create digital curriculum for their classes.

For a full list of locations, the schedule and how to register, visit http://bit.ly/tcpressrelease.

Source: Learning.com, www.learning.com

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OverDrive Announces Acceleration of Global eBook Distribution to K-12 & Higher Ed Channels

OverDrive has announced that educational and academic publishers can now reach an increasing number of schools around the world through hundreds of K-12 and higher education libraries in  its global network. New eBook publishers supplying to OverDrive-powered school, college, and university libraries include Houghton Mifflin, Evan-Moor Educational Publishers, Kaeden Publishing, Barnes Report, and ALA Editions. They join Barron's Educational Series, Inc., Disney Digital Books, Elsevier Science, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Scholastic, Taylor & Francis, and many others in providing digital books to libraries via OverDrive.

OverDrive is demonstrating this expanded global network with growing distribution to educational channels at BookExpo America, May 24-26 in New York's Javits Center. OverDrive will also present on the benefits of multichannel distribution and library eBook lending at IDPF Digital Book and School Library Journal Day of Dialog on May 23, as well Publishers Launch BEA on May 25, in New York City.

OverDrive powers digital collections for K-12 school and higher education libraries worldwide. Elementary and secondary school partners, both individual and district-wide, include WSWHE BOCES (New York), Mesquite ISD (Texas), International School of Amsterdam, and Arrowhead Union High School (Wisconsin). College and university partners, both two- and four-year institutions, include McGill University, University of Pittsburgh, and Seneca College of Applied Arts & Technology.

OverDrive provides digital distribution services for more than 15,000 libraries, retailers, and schools worldwide with support for Windows, Mac, iPod, iPhone, iPad, Sony Reader, NOOK, Android, and BlackBerry.

Source: OverDrive, www.overdrive.com

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Encyclopaedia Britannica Releases 'Snakes', Multimedia App for iPhone, iPad, and iPod

Encyclopaedia Britannica Kids  has released Snakes, a new multimedia app that makes it fun to learn about all those slithering animals, with games, puzzles, fact-packed articles and beautiful multimedia. The new mobile download for the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch is aligned with the school curriculum and designed for ages 8-12, though, says the announcement, even the youngest and most ophidiophobic kids can enjoy it.

The range of features, which makes Snakes like several apps in one, includes:   

* interactive games, including a photographic memory-match, virtual jigsaw puzzles, photo "brush-offs," and magic-square puzzles;

* videos and stunning photography;

* reliable, factual articles on snakes, where and how they live, how they evolved, their sometimes deadly characteristics, and how on earth they move without arms or legs;

* interactive maps showing the natural habitats of different kinds of snakes worldwide; 

* quizzes that let kids test themselves on what they've learned.

Snakes is the latest addition to the Britannica Kids series of apps introduced last fall. Others include Dinosaurs, Solar System, Ancient Egypt, Ancient Rome, Rainforests, Volcanoes, and Aztec Empire. The series gives children in the middle grades engaging new ways to learn using the digital devices they prefer. Working with its development partner, Concentric Sky, Britannica plans to introduce a new app on Knights and Castles later this spring.

Britannica Kids: Snakes is available for download for $4.99 US on Apple's Apps Store.

Source: Encyclopaedia Britannica, www.britannica.com/

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Curriculum Associates Creates New Reading and Math Assessment geared to Common Core State Standards

Curriculum Associates has created a new reading and mathematics assessment  for grades 3-8 that is designed to help educators  better transition to the Common Core State Standards (CCSS). With the i-Ready Common Core State Standards Screener (i-Ready CCSS Screener), educators can administer a one-hour per subject online assessment to students and use the results to determine how prepared students are for the CCSS. The i-Ready CCSS Screener pinpoints the standards which students are most likely to struggle with, identifies gaps in the current curriculum, helps inform curriculum and professional development and gives educators instructional recommendations to help plan instruction.

The i-Ready CCSS Screener assesses all of the reading standards for literary and informational text, as well as all math standards that can be tested in an online environment. For reading and math standards that cannot be assessed online, educators will receive instructional recommendations to help them more effectively teach those standards. After the online student assessment, the i-Ready CCSS Screener generates immediate and easy-to-understand reports available at district-, school-, class- and individual student-levels that pinpoint which standards educators should focus on.

Created and informed in part by a panel of expert advisors including Kari Ross, Mark Thames, Roger Farr and Richard Bisk, the i-Ready CCSS Screener was built off of a strong research base that draws from a detailed body of work from the creators of the CCSS.  The i-Ready CCSS Screener uses the latest models from the SBAC and PARCC, the two consortia developing the Common Assessments, and includes actual text recommended by lead CCSS developers to meet new complexity requirements and leverages states' models for high item complexity.

Pricing is based per school and varies based on the number of students in that school.  For complete details on i-Ready CCSS Screener, and to see promotional pricing options, please visit http://i-Ready.com/CCSS.

Source: Curriculum Associates, www.curriculumassociates.com/

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Gale Partners with TheGreenInterview.com to Bring Videos and Content to GREENR

Gale, part of Cengage Learning, and TheGreenInterview.com, a Canadian subscription website offering information on environmental subjects, have announced an agreement to enhance the content of GREENR, Gale's electronic resource offering authoritative reference content in the area of sustainable development, the environment, energy and natural resources.

TheGreenInterview.com will be providing Gale with video interviews covering a range of issues connected to our planet, humans on earth, damage to our ecosystem, alternative development ideas, sustainability, and more. Transcripts and audio (MP3) files of the video content and biographies of the interviewees in each video segment will also be available. Additional Green Interview content will be added to GREENR in the future, as it is produced. The agreement also licenses to Gale two blogs from TheGreenInterview.com that discuss current and past environmental topics and developments.

TheGreenInterview.com, hosted by author, speaker and educator Silver Donald Cameron, provides an enewsletter and video series that captures, in interview form, the ideas of prominent advocates of sustainability and environmental protection. The shows are produced and directed by Chris Beckett, and released in association with Mount Saint Vincent University in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Launched in April 2010, TheGreenInterview.com seeks out leaders for intense, searching conversations (running an hour or more), and makes those interviews available to its subscribing customers via its website. The goal of TheGreenInterview.com is to amass a library of extended video and audio interviews with the world's environmental leaders. A few of the notable interviews currently available or in production include:

  • James Lovelock, the originator of the Gaia theory, which holds that the Earth behaves like a single living organism. Lovelock's importance to science has been compared to that of Darwin.
  • Paul Watson, head of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society and the hero of the hit TV series Whale Wars.
  • Dr. Vandana Shiva, physicist, philosopher, environmental activist, eco-feminist, and author of numerous books on subjects like Biopiracy and Earth Democracy.
  • Dr. William Rees, who devised the "Ecological Footprint," which measures the proportion of the Earth's resources any group of people is using.
  • The Honorable Jigme Yoser Thinley, the first democratically-elected Prime Minister of Bhutan, who is dedicated to improving Bhutan's Gross National Happiness as opposed to its Gross National Product.
  • Jane Goodall, the scientist whose studies with chimpanzees redefined the nature of human beings, and whose Jane Goodall Institute programs pursue habitat restoration and involve youth in ecological action.

The complete list can be found online at www.thegreeninterview.com/interviews. TheGreenInterview.com content will be added to GREENR at no additional cost to current customers.

For more information or to set up a trial of GREENR, please contact Kristina Massari at kristina.massari@cengage.com. For further information about The Green Interview, contact Silver Donald Cameron at sdc@thegreeninterview.com.

Source: Gale/Cengage, www.gale.cengage.com

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Cool Links: Why the first true post-PC era device isn't the iPad. It's the Chromebook.

So the announcement about Google's Chromebook is out! And so is a river of informed commentary via articles, blog posts, and more. We wanted to pick one to signal to you here, and finally chose this one from David Gewirtz from ZD Net: Why the first true post-PC era device isn't the iPad. It's the Chromebook" with a summary/tagline that says, "You can’t claim to be post-PC if you can’t start using the thing without a PC (or a Mac)." He says a lot, so we'll leave it to you to link to his article HERE.

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Follett Launches Textbook and Device Management Package

Follett Software Company has announced that it is launching a new Textbook and Device Management Package, designed to help K-12 districts tackle the print-to-digital transition by enabling the efficient tracking and managing of textbooks as well as the devices used to support students in the classroom.

The company says that the Textbook and Device Management Package will deliver all of the functionality of Follett Software's market Destiny Textbook Manager plus Destiny Asset Manager for the express purpose of tracking devices. The package will appeal to potential new customers of Destiny Textbook Manager, and also to existing customers who seek to integrate the tracking of devices - for example, netbooks, laptops, graphing calculators and other devices used by students and teachers, according to the announcement.

The new package will help districts efficiently generate reports for both textbooks and devices so they can easily comply with federal and state requirements and equitable access laws and mandates, and funding management, the announcement states.

Follett Software's suite of Destiny products includes Destiny Library Manager, Destiny Textbook Manager, and Destiny Asset Manager. For more information on Destiny Resource Management, link to www.follettsoftware.com/school-asset-management.

Source: Follett Software Company, www.follettsoftware.com/

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EBSCO Publishing Releases New iPhone Application

EBSCO Publishing has announced the release of a new iPhone application for improving mobile access EBSCOhost content. Building on the success of EBSCOhost Mobile, a website application designed for internet-capable mobile devices including smartphones, the new iPhone application (app) provides a quick and convenient way for Apple iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad users to access quality content via EBSCOhost.

The new iPhone app, available free from the iTunes App Store, offers easy authentication for users via a library's EBSCOhost profile. New features include the ability to view content in visual landscape mode and the option to save articles and PDF full-text content on the device for offline viewing. The app also includes existing EBSCOhost features. These features include limiting to full text, date ranges, peer-reviewed content or by publication.

Clicking into a result replicates the EBSCOhost user experience, providing researchers with abstracts and links to full text, as well as key citation information such as source, authors, and subject terms which are all easily clickable to launch new searches. Users also have the ability to save and email articles as well as store PDFs for offline viewing. The result list is scrollable, can be refined by subject and publication facets and can be sorted by relevancy or date. Available data in the result list includes citations and access to full-text articles.

The interface has been simplified for increased speed and user convenience. EBSCO currently offers a mobile app for DynaMed, a point-of-care resource. Future apps will include an EBSCOhost app for Android devices, iPhone apps for Business Book Summaries and Nursing Reference Center and eBook reader apps.

Source: EBSCO Publishing, www.ebscohost.com/

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