necclogomerAmerican Education Corp., publisher of the A+nyWhere Learning System, announced that it has released Spanish I B, a new world language course for its online courseware system. Spanish I B is the second full-semester course component (Spanish I A is the first) of an integrated, yearlong course of study for students in grades 9-12. Included in the courseware is a Spanish-to-English and English-to-Spanish dictionary. The content and concepts of the Spanish I B course are based in part on the National Standards in Foreign Language Education, developed in cooperation with the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages. Spanish I B offers an advanced focus on vocabulary, pronunciation, reading, and writing of the Spanish language. The 72 lessons, divided into 18 weekly units, cover a variety of topics and build on the conversational and grammatical skills that were introduced in Spanish I A.

AverMedia, a provider of presentation and surveillance technology, announced the AVerPen Interactive Collaborative Learning Solution. The AVerPen is a device that combines the features found in interactive whiteboards, wireless slates, and student response systems–offering mobility, simultaneous teacher-student engagement, and immediate feedback from virtually any surface in the room, the company says. Starter sets include one teacher pen with four student pens, all able to work simultaneously. Teacher pens can control all AVer+ Software features, as well as activate, limit, or expand student pen functions, and the pens fully integrate with AVerVision Document Cameras. The AVerPen is expected to be available in September.

Buzan Online Ltd., a U.K.-based company, is expanding its reach to the United States. The company’s focus is the iMindMap, software that provides a graphic technique to harness a person’s full range of cortical skills–word, image, number, logic, rhythm, color, and spatial awareness. Buzan Online says this allows users to think in a more effective and brain-friendly way, giving them an advantage over individuals stuck in “old-fashioned linear thinking patterns. Now, you can see the whole picture and save time by becoming more efficient.”

Calypso Systems demonstrated a wide array of multimedia technology solutions for schools, including hardware interfaces, IP-based controllers, and sound amplification systems. At NECC, Calypso also announced the winners of its Be Heard grant program, which will award WCM-RF sound-field reinforcement systems to three schools: Holly Grove Elementary School in Holly Springs, N.C.; McWhirter Elementary School in Webster, Texas; and Lawrence Central High School in Indianapolis. The three grants are worth a total of $120,000, Calypso said.

Certiport announced the latest version of its worldwide digital literacy certification program, the Certiport Internet and Computing Core Certification (IC³). The newest version, dubbed IC³ Global Standard 3 (GS3), is the third installment of the regularly updated standard. Ratified last year by the Global Digital Literacy Council, the new standard reportedly received input from more than 400 subject matter experts from around the world. Certiport also launched an Adobe Certified Associate certification exam for Adobe Creative Suite 4. The new release comes as the Adobe certification program has experienced huge growth, Certiport says. The surge in examinations has been fueled in part by initiatives in Florida and New York to integrate the certification into career and technical education programs.

CompassLearning announced an update to its Odyssey High School courseware, including eight new high school courses: English III and IV, Algebra II, Trigonometry, Chemistry, Physics, U.S. History I (to 1850), and World History. The new release also boasts a reporting feature that enables teachers and administrators to display, save, and print information related to test results, time on task, attendance, and enrollment, the company says.

CTB/McGraw-Hill released Acuity UnWired, new clicker integration software for the company’s Acuity InFormative Assessment solution. Acuity UnWired lets students take Acuity assessments using student-response devices provided by Qwizdom and eInstruction. Teachers can immediately act on assessment responses and generate standards-aligned Acuity reports.

Curriculum Advantage unveiled the latest version of its Classworks instructional software for grades K-12, Classworks Web Edition. Classworks provides individualized instruction in math, reading, language arts, and science to bring at-risk students to grade-level proficiency, accelerate learning for mainstream students, and help English learners build fluency, the company says. With Classworks Web Edition, teachers can deliver differentiated instruction for crowded classrooms, multi-tiered interventions and progress monitoring for Response to Intervention programs, and tutoring for dropout prevention. Classworks Web Edition includes 6,000 new activities, and each activity is tagged by learning style so teachers can select what modality works best for each student. The updated version also features a new search engine, allowing teachers to search by publisher, keyword, state standards, district pacing guide, learning style, or grade level.

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