New instructional technology for the 2011-12 school year

SMART Technologies has introduced new student response software, called SMART Response VE, that enables students to log in to assessments from any internet-enabled device, including tablets, smart phones, or laptops. Students can access teacher-created assessments, respond to questions, and receive immediate feedback with whatever device they already have. The software integrates seamlessly with SMART’s Notebook learning software, and it’s available on an annual subscription basis.

In addition, SMART has released an instructional technology management program called SMART Vantage, which helps administrators and ed-tech directors understand and manage how SMART Board interactive whiteboards and projectors are being used in classrooms. By logging into a web-based interface, instructional technology leaders can view information about various aspects of ed-tech use in individual classrooms or throughout schools and districts. This information can be used to reduce operating costs and make more informed decisions about professional development needs, SMART says.

Turning Technologies also offers student response software, called TurningPoint Anywhere, that can be used with any device students already have. But the company’s latest innovation is a one-ounce, credit-card size device that teachers can use to run their presentations and elicit student responses from anywhere in the room.

At $50, the PresenterCard is much less expensive than a tablet, slate, or other mobile device. It features eight buttons—start/stop, back, forward, show/hide, channel, and three programmable buttons—and includes a small handle for a lanyard, so it can be worn around the teacher’s neck.

If teachers prefer to run their presentations and control the TurningPoint software from their own iOS mobile device, such as an iPhone or iPad, Turning Technologies now offers a free app from the Apple store that enables them to do this.

Other new presentation tools

Through a partnership with Copernicus Education Products, Epson this past spring began selling a Copernicus mount that can attach a projector to a table. Now, Epson has bundled this table mount with its BrightLink 455Wi ultra short-throw interactive projector to turn almost any tabletop into an interactive surface, the company says.

With the included table mount, the BrightLink 455Wi creates an interactive space up to 60 inches diagonally and allows for collaborative working environments around a table, while providing greater accessibility for younger students or those using wheelchairs. The interactive tabletop also has applications for architecture, art, design, and engineering classes, Epson says.

eSchool News Staff

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