Thursday, July 4, 2013

ISTE 2013 Takebacks

Didn't get a chance to attend ISTE 2013? Here are some of the highlights! My first time at ISTE, I was impressed with the sheer quantity of learning options - from the elaborate Expo, Blogger's Cafe, Student Showcase, playgrounds, to topnotch sessions. I spent a good portion of my time at the student showcases (a great opportunity if you attend ISTE in the future) and the Expo. At the Expo, I was able to meet with vendors, watch presentations by teachers, and gather lots of free products! In the process, I was also able to scope out a few new up and coming ed tech companies worth a look:

  • A new solution for BYOD schools who incorporate mobile devices: LearnPal - it is currently free and acts as a management platform for teachers in a mobile device community. According to LearnPal, teachers are given a Teacher Dashboard that enables them to: 
    • Access web dashboard from all major internet browser - no software
    • Send apps, e-books, and uploaded files directly student devices
    • Create and send quizzes to students to test their knowledge in real-time
    • Use the multi-user whiteboard MultiSketch to collaborate with students
          It's worth a look!

  • A solution for managing your in-classroom Library is Classroom Organizer - it is currently free, has an app, and enables students to check-out and return books or other materials to the classroom teacher. It also runs assessment reports on student activity, allows students to rate and review books, and keeps a classroom inventory. 
  • A new site for learning how to game is Educade - this is a Beta product right  now so it is currently free. Teachers can create their own STEM lessons or they can search those of others. Lessons are interactive, collaborative, and multimedia. You can search by type of STEM tool, subject, and grade level. Truly a valuable classroom resource!
  • Looking for a professional learning network for STEMx teachers? Try HP's Catalyst Academy - Within the academy, teachers have three options - to take the mini courses designed for busy teachers, to take the recognition which gives credits and badges, or to enlist in the academy which offers online professional development for teachers taught by STEM innovators. 

In addition to some of the newbies, I was reminded of some other great applications:

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