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Saturday, July 08, 2006

NECC Vendors/Keynote Speakers

I won't try to pretend I am as adept at visiting vendors as Nancy. (Did she really see all 1000+.) But I will share the few that I did drag myself to.

Document cameras have come way down in price and have so many more features than they did just 3 years ago. Document cameras, when used with a projector, project anything from realia to worksheets so students can see just about anything in a larger format. They are more than just the 21st century overhead projector, as they capture images on 360 degree axis, can be used with the lights on or off, and even connect to microscopes-but at $499 they cost about the same as an overhead. The best ones I saw were at Avermedia

Pokemon Learning League launches Aug.1st for a free trial. It's for 3-6th grades, but is web-based standards-driven interactive animated lessons and they gave out cool pencils:)

Lintor had some cool hard back covers for those class book you make with iPhoto books, power point slide shows, etc. They range from $2.60-3.90 a cover depending on size.

I took a look at EvanMoor's Take it to the computer and TCMs TechTool Kits and have decided I'm done with random "standards based" technology integration programs. Personally, I think they are nothing we couldn't do ourselves better. But ours would be specifically aligned not only with our standards and content, but with our grade level, our programs and most importantly our pacing plan.

We visited promethean and signed up for their new website. We are very excited to be getting our ActivBoards next year and look forward to them coming out for training as well. (Good free stuff at the booth too:))

RIF or Reading is Fundamental has a cool site for kids. They can read so many books over summer and get a chance to win a $10 gift certificate to Target. Who doesn't want that! They also said they have fun games, contests and prizes all year long.

Probably the coolest project I saw, were some 5th graders from Mexico who were demoing games they made to share what they had learned about ecosystems. They were using something called Authorware from Microsoft and making something just as good as what the vendors were selling. I asked one boy if he was going to sell this, he grinned sheepishly and said in his thick accent "Maybe later.":)

Weds' keynote speaker, Dewitt Jones was wonderful. His message of seeing what was right with the world was inspiring as always. He also talked about living with passion and having a vision and how to make it a reality by gaining the right skills, being in the right place at the right time, and being open to all possibilities.

Thurs' keynote speaker, Nicholas Negraponte, talked about his endeavors in making the $100 laptop. He made some interesting points about doing things big so more people get on board and his intial refusals from vendors to help until they learned how many units he was producing. It was also wonderful to see a very successful capitalist doing something to make the world a better place.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

speaking of document cameras...
what did you think of the ELMOs? the ones we looked had necks that only moved in a front to back motion but you could flip objects (360) and connect to a microscope plus project your computer screen and switch back and forth to real objects and even superimpose the objects onto the computer screen. I thought they were pretty cool. OK they weren't cheat. Their cheapest price seemed to be around $600 and they didn't have OSX software yet but it will be available in a couple of weeks we were told.

12:18 PM  
Blogger Eva Wagner said...

Yes, but Avermedia's did all of that, (plus a cool lighting feature that highlighted text in white and made everything else blue) and they were cheaper and they were OSX ready;)

5:30 PM  

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