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November 18, 2014

Table of Contents

Gepeto Launches Animated Story Creation App
SunGard K-12 Education Releases Family App for eSchoolPLUS
Intel Security, Discovery Education Announce Intel Security Digital Safety Program
Curriculum Associates Expands Ready Mathematics
Learningpod Announces Release of AP Questions & Answers

Gepeto Launches Animated Story Creation App

Gepeto has announced the launch of its Gepeto app, a program that helps kids create animated stories using puppets. The app gives children the ability to craft their own animated stories directly on the iPad. The Gepeto app lets consumers create narratives just by using intuitive puppet gestures and proprietary technology.

Gepeto is an interactive story builder that allows kids to make their own stories using any 2D or 3D images and animations, essentially giving a personal “green screen” that can be used anywhere. Through this app there’s also the ability to control characters using puppets while mimicking their natural play.

The Gepeto app aims to encourage kids to use digital media in a creative and useful way. With Gepeto, kids will not only be able exercise their creativity, but they will learn valuable media skills that can be foundational in how they navigate an increasingly digital landscape, the announcement states.

For more information on Gepeto visit gepetoapp.com/.

Source: Gepeto, gepetoapp.com

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SunGard K-12 Education Releases Family App for eSchoolPLUS

SunGard K-12 Education has announced the release of the eSchoolPLUS Family App. Designed to tighten the feedback loop between schools and families, the Family App puts just-in-time information that supports student achievement at the fingertips of parents/guardians and students on their mobile device.

Easy-to-view icons connect students, parents, and guardians with classwork, schedules, attendance, grades, activities, and more. By displaying data through the lens of action, the Family App helps schools and families support student achievement. In addition, the Family App is a 21st-century tool that helps students develop skills in productivity and time management that can benefit them throughout their life.

The Family App is available for iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch on the App Store, for Android devices on Google Play, and for Kindle on Amazon.

Source: SunGard K-12 Education, sungard.com

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Intel Security, Discovery Education Announce Intel Security Digital Safety Program

Intel Security, in partnership with Discovery Education, has announced the Intel Security Digital Safety Program, a three-year national education initiative designed to teach children to “Think Before You Link” and make safer decisions when using the internet. The first and only Discovery Education-supported initiative focusing on cybersecurity education, the Intel Security Digital Safety Program will equip educators, students and parents with the tools they need to be confident, safe digital citizens.

As part of the program, educators and parents who pledge their commitment and spread the word about online safety have the opportunity to enter a national sweepstakes. Now through March 2015, eligible participants can enter for a chance to win cash prizes towards strengthening the digital safety and awareness programs at an elementary school of his/her choice. One grand prize winner will be awarded a $10,000 grant, one second place winner will be awarded a $5,000 grant, and ten honorable mention winners will be awarded a $1,000 grant each to benefit the elementary school of their choice. A special drawing will be held for educators in which ten winners will receive a trip to the 2015 ISTE conference in Philadelphia, an Asus Transformer Ultrabook, a two in one tablet/notebook, or McAfee LiveSafe service, a leading digital security solution for consumers.

The Intel Security Digital Safety Program will provide educators with standards-aligned resources, including self-paced lessons for use in the classroom to help engage students on timely, relevant topics like Internet safety and security. At the conclusion of each module, students will receive cybersecurity certificate acknowledging they’ve completed the program and will act as a responsible cyber citizen. Additionally, parents can access the program’s at-home family resources to further reinforce the importance of online safety to their children.

Through Intel Security and Discovery Education’s partnership, the Intel Security Digital Safety Program offers resources designed to teach students ages 8-11 in the United States and Canada ways to keep personally identifiable information (PII) private online, create stronger passwords, and how to deal with cyberbullies. In the partnership’s second year, the program is planned to expand to reach ages 11-14, and in its third year the program is expected to expand globally to offer its resources in the United Kingdom and Ireland.

The first module will be focused on cyber safety and teaches children ways to keep their devices and personal information safe. According to the McAfee “2014 Teens and the Screen” study conducted by Intel Security June 3, 2014, 14 percent of youth between the ages of 10 and 18 have posted their home address online, while only 61 percent have enabled privacy settings on their social profiles.

Intel Security has already had success in equipping members of the community with some simple Internet safety tips. Since 2011, more than 250,000 school-aged children and parents worldwide participated in the McAfee Online Safety employee volunteer program (McAfee is now a part of Intel Security). With the support of Discovery Education, Intel Security hopes to make its curriculum available to millions of children, parents and educators around the globe.

For more information, visit thinkbeforeyoulinkinschool.com.

Source: Discovery Education, discoveryeducation.com

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Curriculum Associates Expands Ready Mathematics

Curriculum Associates has expanded its Ready Mathematics program to include a student Practice and Problem Solving Book, as well as online Math Center Activities for grades 2–5, to help students further develop conceptual understanding, problem-solving strategies, and procedural fluency. The Ready program now provides teachers with more classroom activities as well as options for rigorous, independent student practice in class, after school, or at home.

The Mathematics Practice and Problem Solving Book complements the Student Instruction Book and includes:

· A family letter for every lesson that helps parents or caregivers understand the content and participate in the lesson activity with their child

· Problems that require greater levels of higher-order thinking and encourage students to reason and explain their thinking

· Performance tasks that require students to integrate concepts and skills from multiple standards within the unit to solve a multi-step problem

· Unit games that provide opportunities for students to work collaboratively as they build fluency and deepen conceptual understanding

The new Math Center Activities, available within Ready’s Online Teacher Toolbox, further reinforce the program’s instructional and practice components. There are two activities providing differentiated instruction for each standard, and each activity is differentiated for students performing on-level, below-level, and above-level. The activities can be used by teachers to differentiate instruction or by students either individually or in small groups without direct teacher involvement, which make the activities ideal for use as part of a classroom rotation or for use in tutoring centers.

Ready Mathematics supports a rich classroom environment in which mathematical reasoning, mathematical discourse, and a range of mathematical practices all thrive. Ready Common Core Mathematics Instruction, available for grades K–8, addresses the Common Core’s emphasis on conceptual understanding and mathematical reasoning by using problem solving throughout the instruction. The Standards for Mathematical Practice are embedded throughout the instruction.

Teacher Resource Books support teachers with strong embedded professional development, including step-by-step lesson plans, mathematical discourse questions and possible student solutions to help support teachers in learning the new standards, and instructional strategies. In addition to the new Math Center Activities, the Online Teacher Toolbox provides teachers with invaluable, easy-to-use resources, including access to all Ready Mathematics K–8 lessons, and additional resources to enable teachers to differentiate instruction and reteach prerequisite skills students may not have mastered in earlier grade levels.

Both the student Practice and Problem Solving Book and the Math Center Activities are currently available. The student Practice and Problem Solving Book can be purchased for an introductory cost of $5 per student until December 31, 2014. The Math Center Activities are available for free to teachers with a subscription to the Online Teacher Toolbox.

Source: Curriculum Associates, curriculumassociates.com

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Learningpod Announces Release of AP Questions & Answers

Learningpod has announced a new resource especially designed for teachers of advanced placement (AP) courses. Learningpod’s AP Questions & Answers, and its new theme-based digital workbook for the AP U.S. History class and exam, provide AP course teachers with a wealth of easy-to-use, go-to online questions they can mix and match to create their own question sets for their students.

Learningpod’s Q & A resource organizes extensive AP practice content and information in a dozen subjects, from biology and world history to psychology and economics. Each digital workbook is divided into “pods”, which focus on diagnostic tests and categories within the specific subject, such as “The Structure of Government” and “Policymaking” for the U.S. Government and Politics workbook.

When students visit Learningpod, they can browse through the thousands of sets of pods—multiple-choice questions organized by test type (SAT, GRE, ACT) and subject matter. Students can get an explanation of the content related to the question, instant feedback after each answer, and see what percentage of people answered the same way they did.

With Learningpod, teachers can share or embed quizzes or assignments on their personal webpages or print them out for students. Each pod has its own URL that can be sent to students via email or posted on a classroom blog. Students, and even parents, also have access to the site for free to review tens of thousands of practice questions on a wide variety of topics.

Learningpod’s AP U.S. History workbook includes original questions developed by Greg Feldmeth, a respected AP U.S. History teacher and author of several AP U.S. History study guides. The workbook’s questions, short passages and images align with the recently revised 2015 exam. According to College Board figures, the AP U.S. History exam is one of the most popular AP tests with nearly 450,000 students taking it in 2013.

When teachers sign up for Learningpod, they can receive a free download of the AP U.S. History workbook.

Teachers can also search for Common Core- and state standard-aligned pods that are ready to use in the classroom. All of the materials on the site are designed to work on tablets and mobile devices as well as computers.

Source: Learningpod, learningpod.com

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