PCI Education Introduces Environmental Print Series

SAN ANTONIO (July 16, 2009) – Special education classrooms often include a mix of students who are verbal and nonverbal, and meeting the communication needs of all these students can be a challenge.  To provide teachers with a language arts program designed to reach both populations, PCI Education introduces the Environmental Print Series.  PCI Education, the number one provider of resources for students with special needs, developed the comprehensive, standards-based curriculum that combines language arts instruction with signs students see in their everyday environment.

The Environmental Print Series teaches students to identify and explain the meaning of 48 signs found in the community.  The language arts program integrates forms of environmental print, such as road signs and indoor signs, into story lines about adolescent characters.  The books and activity sheets in the Environmental Print Series use symbol-supported text to help nonreaders easily understand the stories, and improve their literacy skills.  The series also includes a wide variety of manipulatives, which allow students to demonstrate comprehension and content mastery. 

"Since PCI Education was founded 18 years ago, it has always been my dream to help students with moderate to significant disabilities participate in reading and language arts with age-appropriate materials," said Janie Haugen-McLane, founder of PCI Education and developer of the Environmental Print Series.  "Environmental Print Series is the realization of that dream."

Intended for use in classrooms for students with moderate to severe intellectual disabilities, the Environmental Print Series offers 16 full-color books in two levels to support differentiated instruction.  Both levels use the same illustrations to tell the story, but Level A has only one line of text per page, while Level B has two lines per page.  Based on their abilities, students are organized into two groups, one reading the Level A book and the other reading the Level B book.  Teachers then use the two levels to differentiate instruction while using the same scripted lessons and manipulatives provided in the program.

All questions from the Environmental Print Series can be answered both verbally and nonverbally.  The program includes Response Cards, which allow nonverbal students to display a picture answer to many of the questions.  In addition, a Responder Mat is included so that students can easily indicate "yes", "no", or "I don’t know" to all yes/no questions.  The Responder Mat offers visual images for each of the three answers, enabling students to gaze at, or touch, their response.

Level One of the Environmental Print Series provides lessons and activities for a complete school year.  Each book is supported by ten fully scripted lesson plans that cover language arts standards while teaching three common signs, or other forms of environmental print.  The lessons focus first on learning the signs in their environmental context through the books, and then on teaching the signs individually using a variety of manipulatives.  As students learn the signs, subsequent lessons emphasize story comprehension.  The final lesson for each book focuses on assessment and progress monitoring.

Level One of the Environmental Print Series will be available August 2009, and is priced at $599.95 per program.

For more information on the Environmental Print Series, visit www.pcieducation.com/ep.

About PCI Education
PCI Education offers more than 7,500 instructional materials for a wide range of students with special needs, including learning differences as well intellectual and developmental disabilities such as autism, mental retardation and Down’s syndrome.  In addition, the company’s products are used in English language learner and adult literacy classes, and to help students performing below grade level.  Based in San Antonio, PCI Education has been helping educators lead students to success in school, at home and in the community since 1991.  For more information, visit www.pcieducation.com or phone 800-594-4263.

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For more information:
–Nicole Horne, PCI Education, 800-594-4263, ext. 126, nhorne@pcieducation.com
–Emily Embury, C. Blohm & Associates, Inc., 608-839-9800, emily@cblohm.com

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Failing to recycle is rubbish – Save money and set up a recycling scheme today.

DESPITE negative reports that thousands of tonnes of recyclable rubbish is being stock-piled in warehouses around the country, instead of being recycled, businesses are being urged by workplace equipment supplier, Slingsby to maintain their ‘Green Agendas’ in order to avoid paying landfill taxes which again increased in April 2009.

Various recent news articles have reported that the downturn in the economy has hit the market for recyclable waste and it is no longer viable to export waste materials, including paper and plastics, to countries such as China, which reuse them when making new products and packaging.

However,with the standard rate of landfill tax having risen from £32 per tonne to £40 per tonne, businesses that don’t recycle will face significantly higher charges to dispose of rubbish in landfill sites.

Reducing the amount of waste that is sent to landfill also lowers the amount of methane and other gas emissions that landfill sites emit.  Wrap, the government recycling agency, worked out that recycling in 2006 saved 18 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions, the equivalent of taking five million cars off the road.

Lee Wright, marketing director of Slingsby,explains:“Negative press about recycling combined with pressures organisations to reduce costs could lead to some companies choosing to cut back on, or completely abandon, their green credentials.  However, because landfill tax is increasing, this is likely to be false economy and businesses that have significantly reduced their environmental impact in recent years should be continuing to build on this progress.

“Despite the short term concerns,over a longer period of time there’s no denying that recycling will be worthwhile and have a positive impact on the environment.  It’s also important to bear in mind that recycling programmes don’t have to be over-complicated and can be very quick and easy to implement.”
 

 

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What educators can learn from brain research

As technology advances, new discoveries based on brain mapping are helping researchers understand how students learn. And those discoveries, in turn, are enriching and informing classroom practices in a growing number of schools.

Thanks to functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI)–a type of non-invasive, low-radiation brain scan that measures neural activity in response to certain stimuli, and the most recently developed forms of neuroimaging–researchers are learning more about how we learn than many thought possible.

For example, perhaps the most shocking revelation in neuroscience is that the brain’s structure is more flexible than previously thought–a concept called neuroplasticity, meaning that the brain can still learn new concepts after various ages, and that every student can be taught many different ways. In a sense, the brain can be rewired.

Other studies have begun to measure reading aptitudes, the causes of and workings of attention-deficit disorder, and the way the brain processes mathematics.

Yet, with all this new research, it’s important to remember that a single study alone is not definitive–and the best research is tied to classroom practice.

Michael Atherton, a researcher in the Department of Educational Psychology at the University of Minnesota, believes educators should look only at specific types of studies when considering implementation strategies.

“Education is an applied field, like engineering,” said Atherton. “If there’s no connection to practice, then that research is best left to basic researchers in the cognitive neurosciences.”

In Atherton’s report titled “Education and fMRI: Promise and Cautions,” he describes detailed research techniques used in fMRI studies as the foundation for a methodological framework that can be used by educators to assess how applicable a study might be for classroom implementation.

This framework has three progressive stages:

– Discovery. This type of study is a good foundational study, but it’s too broad at its current stage to have any direct implications for education. These studies typically focus on one area of the brain in relation to a specific cognitive function. For example, general intelligence seems to be localized in the lateral front cortex.

– Functional analysis. This type of study moves from a generalization to a more focused study of brain activations. For example, if a discovery study researched which parts of the brain were stimulated while playing chess, the functional analysis study would now investigate how these parts of the brain function differently when someone is a novice or an expert. Another example might try to answer the question: “What is it that good readers do that poor readers do not?” Atherton says educators can derive good understanding from these studies, but they still should be cautious.

Pedagogical evaluation. If studies have shown which activations are associated with high levels of performance, the next phase asks: “Which pedagogical method results in students achieving higher levels of performance?” Studies that can answer this question can be used to guide instructional design, Atherton believes.

Emotions count

Mary Helen Immordino-Yang, assistant professor of education at the Rossier School of Education and assistant professor of psychology at the Brain and Creativity Institute at the University of Southern California, is a cognitive neuroscientist and educational psychologist who studies the brain bases of emotion, social interaction, and culture and their implications for student development.

She also helps educators understand current research studies and practices.

Thanks to her exploratory, yet detailed, work, she is helping spread the word about how the brain affects social interactions–and policy makers are listening.

In her study, “Neural correlates of admiration and compassion,” Immordino-Yang discovered, through fMRI scans, that when the emotion of admiration is evoked, the entire body is stimulated in response.

“Basically, when you feel admiration, the brain has a heightened self-awareness. This affects the body’s basic performances in a positive way, leading to better overall performance. It’s a startling discovery with many educational implications,” she said.

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Adwords, Adsense, SEO – Common Denominator, Keywords

If you have just put up a website, you probably all ready have heard words like: keywords, Google Adwords, Google Adsense, SEO. Adwords, Adsense, SEO have one thing in common – Keywords. How important are keywords? Very Important.

 

Google Adwords

 

Adwords, be it through Google, Miva,  or any pay-per-click search engines, you need  keywords.  With Adwords, you create a three-line ad – 25 word title, with two 35 word lines of ad copy – then you create your keywords. To get the hits, you have to brainstorm for different keywords, that are different but relevant to your target audience.  Sound easy?  It’s not.  It takes time, patience, constant tweaking, and hoping that the product you are selling is not already saturated — to much competition, makes it a little more difficult for the novice to make a profit. http://www.domainvally.com

Google Adsense

 

Google Adsense is an advertising program created by Google, and which is beginning to be explored by other search engines, such as Yahoo and MSN – that allows you to put targeted ads on your website.  If someone clicks on the ad, you earn a small amount of money. These ads are keyword driven and are relevant to your webpage or website.

 

Sounds simple?  Well, not really.  There is more too it than just putting an ad on your website and expecting someone to click on it.  What’s involved? Let’s see – color, position, style, to name just a few.

 

SEO

 

Search engine optimization – this for me has been a time-consuming process – since I am still learning.  SEO is keyword driven – the search engines pull the keywords from your web copy – not, to my surprise,

from the meta keywords tag.  Granted, I still use the meta keywords tag, but maybe in the near future, I will slowly eliminate the tag from my webpages…

 

The search engines do, however, pull information from Meta Description, Meta Title, and the content of your webpages.  Thus, content does reign supreme.

 

Since content reigns supreme, each page should contain useful content and most importantly, your most relevant keywords that you want to emphasize. Secondly, it is best to try and base your keywords around a central theme. I have found that when the keywords diverts away from the main theme – that sends a red flag to search engines.  So, if you want to look at your keywords and the density of the keywords on your webpage or webpages – You can get a quick rundown at: http://www.webhostinglover.com

 It’s a free

tool, and very helpful.

 

To conclude, keywords is one of the main ingredients that leads people to your website, product, service and/or ad. …AND, keywords based around your quality content will help with your positioning on your website.

 

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Teachers Get “Hands-on” with Science by Participating in Vernier Software & Technology’s Free Fall Workshops

 

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
 
Contact:         
Daylene Long             
Vernier Software & Technology       
  Kati Elliott
 KEH Communications
 
Teachers Get “Hands-on” with Science by Participating in Vernier Software & Technology’s Free Fall Workshops
 
Hands-on workshops in more than 40 cities show educators how to integrate data collection into the curriculum using the ‘LabQuest’ handheld

BEAVERTON, Oregon, July 20, 2009 – Beginning in September, science teachers in 41 cities can sharpen their teaching and technology skills gain experience in making science instruction hands-on by attending one of Vernier Software & Technology’s free Fall workshops. These hands-on workshops provide skills for integrating data collection and analysis as a part of teaching core science topics.
Teaching science with probeware such as Vernier’s technology has been shown to increase teacher effectiveness and improve student test scores. The 2000 NAEP Science Assessment study showed that students who used probeware to collect and analyze data scored significantly higher on tests than those who did not.
During the 4-hour workshops, Vernier trainers and attendees will explore the many ways that data-collection technology can be used to teach important topics in to enhance learning in any chemistry, biology, physics, math, middle school science, physical science or Earth science .classroom Participants will learn how to collect data both in the lab and out in the field using the LabQuest, the most powerful and intuitive interface ever designed by Vernier, to create real-world science investigations.  In addition, participants can earn CEUs and science graduate credit hours by participating in the workshops.
According to David Vernier, co-founder of Vernier and a former physics teacher, “When teachers have the opportunity to get their hands on technology and conduct
investigations using probeware, they immediately see how transformative it can be for their students. Using data-collection technology, students are able to perform many new experiments with measurements not easily obtainable using more traditional methodologies.
Sessions are lead by current or former classroom science and math teachers.  Vernier’s group of 26 trainers together has 686 years of teaching experience and has won many prestigious awards. Collectively they have written more than 60 science books and lab manuals, including many published by Vernier. For more information about the workshops visit http://www.vernier.com/workshops
 
September Workshop Dates and Locations
September 9: Tulsa, OK
September 10: Oklahoma City, OK
September 12: Wichita, KS
September 14:  Topeka, KS
September 14: Fort Worth, TX
September 15: Dallas, TX
September 15: Kansas City, MO
September 16: Austin, TX
September 17: San Antonio, TX
September 19: Corpus Christi, TX
September 21: Houston, TX
September 22: Lincoln, NE
September 22: Houston, TX
September 23: Omaha, NE
September 24: Des Moines, IA
September 26: Minneapolis, MN
 
October Workshop Dates and Locations
October 1: Indianapolis, IN
October 3: Dayton, OH
October 3: Madison, WI
October 5: Columbus, OH
October 5: Milwaukee, WI
October 6: Chicago, IL
October 7: Cincinnati, OH
October 7: Chicago, IL
October 8: Lexington, KY
October 10: Charleston, WV
October 14: Grand Rapids, MI
October 15: Detroit, MI
October 17: Cleveland, OH
October 24: Pittsburgh, PA
October 24: San Jose, CA
October 26: San Francisco, CA
October 26: Erie, PA
October 27: Sacramento, CA
October 28: Buffalo, NY
October 29: Rochester, NY
 
November Workshop Dates and Locations
November 7: Portland, ME
November 9: Portsmouth, NH
November 10: Boston, MA
November 12: Worcester, MA
November 14: Providence, RI
 
 
About Vernier Software & Technology
Vernier Software & Technology has been an innovator of data-collection technology for 28 years.  Creating easy-to-use and affordable science interfaces, sensors, and software, their products can be found in education from elementary school to college. Vernier helps teachers enhance their science curriculum, increase learning, and build students’ critical thinking skills. Vernier’s technologies are in use worldwide in more than 125 countries. For more information visit www.vernier.com.
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Crestron Reveals 2009 International Integration Awards Winners

LONDON, UK July 20, 2009 – Crestron Electronics announced the winners of its second annual International Integration Awards, in London, England. Among other prestigious benefits, each winner received a personalized engraved trophy, a full-color feature spread in Essential Install Magazine (UK), a professionally produced poster of their installation, logo art which can be used for marketing and promotional purposes, and an award listing with their web link on the Crestron website.

The Crestron International Integration Awards were created to honor the achievements in excellence of both commercial and residential dealers that have embraced Crestron integrated technology solutions, resulting in some of the most spectacular, innovative and acclaimed home and building automation installations in the industry.

"The standard of entries is testament to the high quality of Crestron integration being carried out by our dealers, said Crestron UK Managing Director, Robin van Meeuwen. “It is a privilege to see what is being achieved with our technology and to recognize the hard work of those who have helped us get to where we are today."

Crestron is proud to announce the international winners who have exceeded their customers’ expectations and represent the very best in the industry.

 

 

 

Residential Category Winners:

Innovative Design – Prestige Audio Ltd

Home Sweet Home Cinema- Imagine This Integration Systems UK

Ultimate Connected Home – Below £250K – Maven AV Ltd

Ultimate Connected Home- Above £250K – T&T Automation (Europe)

Best High Rise Living – Custom Controls

Best Integrated Home – Creative Home Cinema Ltd

Best International Crestron Home – Avnet Technologies

Brilliant Lighting Design – Kensington Home Technology

 

Commercial Category Winners:

 

Best Education Project – Reflex

Best Education Project (Special Mention) – Impact Marcom

Best Corporate Installation – SmartComm Ltd

Best Leisure Project – Media Powerhouse

Best Medical Installation – Pixel Projects

Best Training & Conference Facilities – IVC Media Ltd

 

 

About Crestron

For 40 years Crestron has been the world’s leading manufacturer of advanced control and automation systems, innovating technology and reinventing the way people live and work. Offering integrated solutions to control audio, video, computer, IP and environmental systems, Crestron streamlines technology, improving the quality of life for people in corporate boardrooms, conference rooms, classrooms, hotel rooms, auditoriums, and in their homes. Crestron’s leadership stems from its dedicated people who are committed to providing the best products, programs and services in the industry.

 

In addition to its World Headquarters in Rockleigh, New Jersey, Crestron has sales and support offices throughout the U.S., Canada, Europe, Asia, Latin America and Australia.

 

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eScholar LLC Launches the Latest Version of its Education Data Warehouse Product

White Plains, N.Y., July 21, 2009 eScholar LLC, the leader in education data management software, has announced the release of version 11 of the eScholar Complete Data Warehouse® for PK-12 (CDW-PK12). CDW-PK12, previously referred to as the eScholar Complete Data Warehouse® solution, is the nation’s most widely used PK-12 data warehouse product enabling the integration of a wide-range of education data for comprehensive longitudinal data analysis and reporting.

 
“The latest version of CDW-PK12 incorporates not only data model enhancements that expand the scope of education data our  customers  can store and improve the ways they can analyze that data, but also includes significant new data quality and validation features,” said eScholar product manager Russ Redgate. “In addition to new options to more easily configure data quality rules and identify errors in source data, this new version contains customer-driven enhancements including a new Facilities domain and support for reporting on the educational activities of students after high school as provided to agencies by the National Student Clearinghouse®.”
 
Additional highlights of this new release, which is available immediately, include enhanced or expanded support for:
 
·         National Student Clearinghouse® data
·         Creating and analyzing groups of districts and schools
·         Testing, programs, and special education data
·         Linking student data with teachers
·         Disciplinary actions and history
·         New race/ethnicity Federal reporting requirements
 
 “The enhanced browser-based data management interface used by our school districts and implemented as part of version 11.0 of the eScholar CDW-PK12 provides more flexibility and control in scheduling data collections,” said Robert Beecham of Nebraska Department of Education. “This new release also enables data quality issues to be identified earlier in the process and continues to demonstrate that the eScholar team is open and responsive to the requirements and needs of its customers making this a partnership we value greatly.”
 
“Our goal as a company has been to continue to enhance our products based on the evolving needs of our customers and the education market in general. This is particularly true today with the increased focus being placed on Longitudinal Data Systems (LDS) by President Obama and Secretary of Education Duncan. This new version of the eScholar Complete Data Warehouse for PK-12 further solidifies our ability to meet the needs of states as they move to take advantage of the funding being allocated for LDS initiatives and the $48 billion of ARRA funding available to states, contingent on making progress on the deployment of an LDS,” said Shawn Bay, eScholar’s founder and CEO. “To meet emerging requirements, we are extending the reach of all eScholar products to support post-secondary and workforce data to ensure that education agencies have a comprehensive picture of the effectiveness of education and its impact on the economy.”
 
Organizations can learn more about version 11 of the eScholar CDW-PK12 by visiting www.escholar.com or visiting our booth at the upcoming NCES Summer Data Conference July 29 through July 31, 2009 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Bethesda, Maryland. 
 
 
About eScholar 
eScholar is the nation’s leading education data management company focused exclusively on improving education by providing educators with the most effective data management tools possible. eScholar products have become the recognized standards in data warehousing and student/staff identification systems. eScholar customers are realizing significant improvements in their ability to meet mandated reporting requirements but more importantly in their ability to improve pre-K through postsecondary student achievement. The eScholar Complete Data Warehouse® products are the most comprehensive solutions available for integrating, cleansing, and managing thousands of education related data elements. The eScholar Uniq-ID® products are the leaders in generating, assigning, and managing statewide unique student and staff identifiers. Relied on by 11 state education agencies and over 3,500 districts across the country, eScholar products transform the way educators use data. For more information about eScholar, visit www.escholar.com or call 877-328-2969.
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WHAT WORKS CLEARINGHOUSE FINDS LEXIA READING EFFECTIVE INBEGINNING READING SKILLS DEVELOPMENT

July 14, 2009 — CONCORD, Mass. —Lexia Learning Systems, one of the nation’s most highly regarded providers of reading software, has announced that its Lexia Reading program is one of only 10 programs to have ever been deemed to show effectiveness in two or more “beginning reading skills” categories by the What Works Clearinghouse (WWC). Described by the U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences as “a central and trusted source of scientific evidence for what works in education,” the WWC is one of the most respected standards of effectiveness for instructional programs, products, practices, and policies; giving educators the tools to make informed decisions.

 

Lexia Reading is among a very small percentage (5.8%) of reading programs to receive this recognition since the WWC was created in 2002. In the past seven years, WWC has screened 171 beginning reading programs, with more than 890 different research studies submitted. Lexia Reading is one of only 10 out of 171 programs in seven years to meet evidence standards as defined by WWC and show positive or potentially positive effects in at least two of the four beginning reading skills (alphabetics, comprehension, fluency and general reading achievement).  Based on studies submitted to WWC by Lexia Learning, Lexia Reading was found to have potentially positive effects on alphabetics and reading comprehension. More information about the WWC report can be found at: http://www.lexialearning.com/research/independentreviews.html.

 

“The recognition by the What Works Clearinghouse is a testament not only to the effectiveness of our programs, but also to the caliber of research upon which our products are based,” said Lexia President and CEO Nick Gaehde. “For twenty-five years, Lexia has maintained a keen focus on providing technology-based methods for improving reading instruction. We are proud that this latest recognition positions Lexia as one of the elite programs being used by schools today.”

 

About Lexia Learning

Lexia Learning Systems, Inc., headquartered in Concord, Mass., is one of the most highly regarded reading software companies in the nation. Established in 1984, the company provides a flexible, Web-enabled technology that is scientifically based and proven to increase reading proficiency in students at all levels of ability, pre-K to adult. Today, Lexia’s programs, including its flagship product, Lexia Reading, are used as an essential part of reading instruction in more than 12,000 schools nationwide, and have helped more than one million students learn to read. To learn more about Lexia, please visit www.lexialearning.com or call 1-800-435-3942.

 

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Westmont College Selects Meraki for 802.11n WiFi Network to Cover 111-Acre Campus


Westmont College Selects Meraki for 802.11n WiFi Network to Cover 111-Acre Campus

Top Tier College Chooses Meraki Over Aruba Networks and Cisco Systems to Deploy Campus-Wide WLAN for a Fraction of the Cost and Complexity


SAN FRANCISCO, CA — July 20, 2009 – Meraki, the could-based wireless networking company, has been selected by Westmont College in Santa Barbara, Calif., for its campus-wide, indoor/outdoor 802.11n network. After careful consideration and testing, Westmont College (Westmont) chose Meraki over Enterprise WLAN providers Aruba Networks and Cisco Systems. Westmont joins a growing number of universities choosing Meraki for its high performance networks that are easy to manage and typically cost 50% less than traditional wireless solutions.

Founded in 1937 and ranked in the top tier among the nation’s best liberal arts colleges according to U.S. News & World Report’s “America’s Best Colleges 2009 Edition,” Westmont enrolls more than 1,200 students across a 111-acre campus with 24 major buildings. Westmont decided to upgrade to an all 802.11n network for two main reasons.  First, Westmont experienced a significant increase in mobile Internet usage among students and faculty and expects the trend to accelerate in the coming years.   Westmont plans to use its 802.11n wireless network to support in-class and campus applications as well as providing Internet connectivity within residence halls and faculty residences. Second, Westmont’s existing deployment did not provide comprehensive indoor/outdoor coverage and was not user friendly.

When selecting a WLAN system, reliability, performance, ease of use and management were vital factors.   “At Westmont we are moving to a cloud-based approach with as many of our IT initiatives as possible in order to improve reliability and performance, reduce cost and allow an already busy IT staff to more effectively manage new IT infrastructure,” said Reed Sheard, vice president and CIO of information technology for Westmont.  “Meraki is unique in bringing the benefits of cloud computing to wireless networking. As a result, we will be able to move entirely to 802.11n and become one of the first colleges in the country to do so.”

Meraki offers universities and colleges reliable, premium-featured networks that can be deployed for less than half the cost and in less than half the time of traditional solutions. Meraki’s Cloud Controller offers very easy-to-use and powerful management tools that allow a multi-site network to be managed remotely with minimal IT staff and resource time. Meraki’s high performance 802.11n access points and mesh configuration provide strong indoor and outdoor coverage across entire campuses including classrooms, auditoriums, stadiums, student and faculty housing and the campus grounds.

Meraki also offers educational institutions the latest enterprise-grade wireless LAN features, such as automatic radio frequency (RF) planning, quality-of-service (QoS) for voice and video, security with 802.1x authentication and the ability to create multiple virtual-LANs on a single physical network – for example one for students, another for staff, others for different wireless applications such as security cameras or voice over wireless.

“With Meraki’s Enterprise Cloud Controller, our deployment time will be cut in half and we can manage the entire network without adding new IT staff,” continued Dr. Sheard.   “From enhancing the classroom experience to supporting special Westmont iPhone applications, we look forward to using the Meraki 802.11n network to make Westmont an even better place for students and faculty.”

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Achieve3000 Announces New Science Unit and Haitian-Creole Translation in Reading Curriculum

Lakewood, NJ –Achieve3000, the leader in differentiated literacy instruction for students in grades 2-12, announced new collection of science units designed to boost student’s individual understanding of key science concepts. Echoing the recommendations from a recently released report by the Carnegie Corporation of New York-Institute for Advanced Study Commission on Mathematics and Science Education, the new science offering uses of non-fiction articles with real-world content to reinforce understanding of key science concepts along with content-area literacy skills.

 

Delivered via Achieve3000’s propriety system, which automatically differentiates content for each student at the appropriate reading level, each science unit includes teacher resources that offer visual graphics, Web resources, videos and hands-on science activities that can be used along with the articles to engage students and to increase their knowledge of critical science concepts and frequently used science vocabulary and technical terms. The new content engages students in activities that will improve their critical 21st century skills – research, critical thinking, and digital literacy  – while improving core reading, writing and comprehension skills.

 

Additional enhancements being launched for the 2009-10 school-year include:

o   Career Connections: a new set of career-focused, feature articles that highlight career opportunities within sixteen of the most popular vocational education career clusters recognized by vocational education experts. The articles and associated activities featured in the Career Connection series will introduce high school students to a wide-range of possible career paths and help build the reading, math and literacy skills as outlined in the WorkKeys Foundational Skills assessment.

o   Haitian-Creole Language Support: similar to the existing Spanish/English support version of KidBiz3000 and TeenBiz3000, the Haitian-Creole Support version will provide both text and audio support Haitian-Creole speaking students as they transition towards English proficiency.

 

“As a company, we are highly focused on providing materials that promote real-world literacy skills that can translate to success in content area classrooms and the workplace,” said Laura Sammons, Vice President of Marketing for Achieve3000. “Connecting to critical content areas like science and to career opportunities and job skills is a natural extension of what we do.”

 

Achieve3000 will also enhance its traditional offerings – KidBiz3000 and TeenBiz3000 – with new visual text features (e.g., graphs, charts, timelines, etc.) and functional documents (e.g., schedules, posters, recipes, etc) that are designed to improve students’ ability to interpret and understand visual data. Research shows that exposure to graphs, charts, and other functional documents – combined with the opportunity to use graph-specific vocabulary in a writing prompt – improves students’ reading comprehension and is a critical skill for 21st Century literacy.

 

Through KidBiz3000 and TeenBiz3000, the company provides research-based reading intervention and literacy acceleration solutions to districts across the country. In the 2008-09 school-year, Achieve3000 served more than a half-million students and 25,000 teachers, in more than 45 states and 525 districts. The differentiated curriculum comes with classroom resources and educational advisors provide professional development to assist teachers in using the differentiated, online curriculum to enhance individualize learning. Achieve3000 assists teachers in creating and using daily feedback loops to monitor, diagnose, intervene and coach student performance in reading, writing, critical thinking and technology.

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About Achieve3000

Achieve3000, founded in New Jersey in 2000, is the leader in online differentiated instruction.  Its solutions deliver online differentiated literacy curricula proven to increase reading comprehension, vocabulary and writing proficiency for students in grades 2 through 12 and also for adult learners.  Through its proprietary software engine, the company uses the Internet to provide tailored assignments to each student in the class based on his or her reading level.  The company’s solutions are delivered in a non-fiction, current event format and are based on decades of scientific research. They include KidBiz3000 (a reading and writing program for grades 2 through 5), TeenBiz3000 (a reading and writing program for grades 6 through 12) and Spark3000 (a reading and writing program for adult learners).  Achieve3000 is located in Lakewood, N.J., for more information, visit www.achieve3000.com or phone 800-838-8771.

 

 
 

 

 

 

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