Marbotic is a french company that was formed in 2012 with the goal of creating education technology apps and tools for young learners. They currently offer two products, Smart Letters and Smart Numbers (or a combined kit with both). These products are meant to help preK-2 students with a variety of ELA and math skills. Plus, the team has an excellent, CCSS-aligned lesson book that is available for teachers as well.
Utopia 360° is a company that offers a variety of virtual reality and augmented reality experiences. In terms of K-12 STEM education, they currently have three bundles and apps: Space Exploration, Dinosaur Experience, and Animal Zoo. All of these are meant to help students explore content through both augmented and virtual reality. Each bundle comes with a headset and cards. These cards are then used to trigger the augmented/virtual reality experience.
KIBO is a robot from KinderLab Robotics that aims to help preK-2 students and teachers integrate programming and STEAM skills (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) into their class and play time. KIBO can be used without a device or a screen, and is meant to be a hands-on, active programming and robotics experience. The robot is based on 15 years of child development research, and has been used in classrooms, libraries, museums, clubs, and camps around the world.
For any K-12 science teacher, the name Vernier is most likely a familiar one. The company has been making science equipment since 1981, and is a common classroom name. As a former biology teacher, I was always a fan of Vernier’s data collection probes and sensors. And now, classroom teachers have a new reason to be excited about Vernier, because they’ve launched an entirely new line of wireless, Bluetooth enabled, Go Direct sensors.
I had the chance to review the Go Direct Force and Acceleration Sensor, and was impressed with the overall ease of use.
Reimagining Library Spaces by Diana Rendina centers around the idea that the traditional school library model is due for an upgrade, and that it is no longer as effective as it once was. Throughout the book, Rendina offers clear, specific, and practical ways to help schools and library media specialists reimagine what their space could be, and to do so with limited financial resources.
Rendina’s suggestions are based on years of experience and practice, and she does an excellent job providing thorough and thoughtful advice on how to transform the library into a space that supports flexible, collaborative, and hands-on learning.
Book Review | Nurturing Young Innovators: Cultivating Creativity in the Classroom, Home and Community by Laura McLaughlin Taddei & Stephanie Smith Budhai
Nurturing Young Innovators explores how preK-5 teachers can engage families and communities to better create an environment that fosters creativity, innovation, and collaboration. Throughout the book, Taddei and Budhai offer practical suggestions and real-world examples for how teachers can bring parents and communities together in support of the development of these types of environments.
It’s an excellent read, full of useful resources and guides to help educators put these ideas into practice.
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