Almost immediately after a school’s worth of notebooks arrive, they start breaking, but the latest version of the rugged RM Mobile One Classbook can last longer because it can stand up to abuse by inattentive students and clumsy teachers. The system has not only been designed to survive being dropped from a desk, but its sealed keyboard is spill-proof and removable. With prices starting at $1,375, the RM One Mobile comes with an Intel Celeron processor, 15.4-inch screen and built-in wireless networking. More information is available at RM Education's Web site.
St. Gregory the Great School in Hamilton Square, New Jersey says they have seen student participaton increase since adopting the Hitachi Software FX-77 StarBoard interactive whiteboards in its K-8 educational facility. Hear about results from Jason Briggs, vice principal in this short video:
Sharp doubles the potential of its EL-9900 scientific graphing calculator by equipping it with a unique two-sided keypad that has a simple side for basic operations and a complex side for advanced algebra and statistics. To change the calculator’s keypad, just remove it, flip it over and snap it back in place. The EL-9900 a powerful device with 827 built-in mathematical functions, 132-by-64 dot screen and 64KB of memory yet it weighs less than 9 ounces and sells for under $100.
Schools and ed tech vendors have discovered that teacher forums are one of the best professional development tools going. Peers learning from peers is a good way to hear technology trials and tribulations straight from the user’s mouth. AVerMedia is the latest to join the club with the announcement of a new forum, available on their Web site. The goal here is like most forums: a central area where teachers can access resources, share ideas, find out about new technologies, and more. The AVerMedia Forum covers a variety of topics, from Helpful Discussions, Classroom Experiences, to AVerMedia Contests.
With modules covering assets, inspection and maintenance, Pervidi can help a school systematize how and when it maintains its facilities. The key is that all instructions, schedules and lists of property and assets fit onto a handheld computer, pushing maintenance into the 21-st century. A demo of the software is available online.
The Start-to-Finish Literacy Starters is an interesting new reading curriculum that combines the efforts of Don Johnston, AbleNet, and the Center for Literacy and Disabilities Studies. The AbleNet MEville to WEville program uses activities like art projects, writing activities, and games to build a classroom community. The Start-to-Finish Literacy Starters blends this MEville to WEville program with Don Johnston’s Start-to-Finish Literacy Starters paperback, computer, and audio books. This result is a unique curriculum specifically for students with moderate to severe/profound intellectual disabilities.
For those administrators who want to lock out the use of flash memory keys and other peripherals on school computers, PC Guardian’s USB Port Security System is the ticket. The system physically covers the PC’s small rectangular port with a lockable metal plate. Deceptively simple but effective, the PC Guardian port cover locks in place, blocking the connector and making as many as four USB ports off limits. Just use the included key to remove the port blocker. The port covers start at $13 each.
Epson’s Stylus CX9475FAX is so versatile that it belongs in every classroom. On top of being a fast copier, the CX9475FAX delivers superb color and monochrome output and has a 1,200 dot per inch scanner, fax machine, wired and wireless networking as well as a 30-page document feeder. The $180 printer can even print photos right off of a digital camera’s memory card and produce borderless snapshots.
Danware’s NetOp 5.5 makes it easier for teachers and administrators to not only block offensive Web sites on school comptuers, but to track which students are doing what on the Internet. The program follows students surfing the Web and records every stop along the way. NetOp 5.5 works on all recent versions of windows, but not Macintosh computers. A free demo is available at www.danware.com
Epson has introduced a pair of identical looking classroom projectors that put the emphasis on value. The PowerLite 83+ sells for $899 and produces 2,200 lumens of brightness while the 822+ model sells for $50 more but outshines its brother by pumping out 2,600 lumens. Both projectors pile on the features with wired networking, 10-watt speakers and are up and running in five seconds. To help cut expenses, the projectors have lamps that have been designed to last for 3,000 hours of use