CALGARY, Alberta — September 3, 2009 — SMART Technologies announces the beta launch of its redesigned SMART Exchange website for teachers. The website (exchange.smarttech.com) contains SMART’s education content, community forums and teacher-support networks. Previously in different locations, the content and community services that educators want from SMART are now all in one place. But the site is not simply a consolidation of resources. The new design has been extensively tested by educators, who provided input on feature and navigation enhancements, particularly those related to a robust search function that returns relevant results. The custom-designed search function searches not only titles, but the content of each resource, so educators can quickly find, evaluate and share relevant material. They can also view lesson activities before downloading them, thus ensuring they can quickly download what they need. With previous resource downloads numbering in the millions, SMART anticipates this feature will be very popular. No registration is required to use the new site, so educators have easy access to more than 25,000 free high-quality resources globally, including over 15,000 US-specific resources and an active community of voluntary members (i.e., members have not been subscribed as part of a product registration process or in order to download lesson activities or other resources).
In recent months, SMART has increased the volume of its education resources from 10,000 to 25,000, in order to provide the degree of depth and choice educators want in digital content. Educators also provided input into the kind and quality of resources they need. Standards-correlated lesson activities are now available for all grade levels. In the future, the site will be fully integrated with SMART Notebook Express, a light version of award-winning SMART Notebook software, which enables any educator to download and edit .notebook files for classroom use. Teachers can easily upload their own lesson activities to SMART Exchange for others to use. Other educators using these resources can highlight the ones they like using the Recommend button. The total number of times a lesson activity has been recommended shows beside it. The new SMART Exchange beta site can be accessed at exchange.smarttech.com.
“Teachers today need high-quality digital resources to use in technology-enabled learning environments,” says Nancy Knowlton, SMART’s CEO. “SMART Exchange provides easy access to a treasure trove of resources that engage students and give teachers access to the professional learning communities they need and value.”
Quick search – Find educational content right away with an efficient search function
Preview – Get content details and a full visual preview before downloading
Standards-correlated lesson activities – Access, download and use standards-correlated lesson activities
Refined search results – Refine by subject, grade, media type, number of downloads and teacher recommendations
SMART Notebook lesson activities – Find lesson activities created by teachers and SMART education specialists
SMART Response question sets – Find assessments created by teachers and SMART education specialists
Download and share – Download or upload educational resources to share with other teachers
Open access – No sign-in or registration required to find, evaluate, get and share resources
SMART integration – Open resources from SMART Exchange in SMART Notebook Express or SMART Notebook collaborative learning software
Discussion forums – Connect with teachers in a professional learning community to gather insight and exchange ideas and best practices
SMART Technologies introduced the touch-sensitive SMART Board interactive whiteboard in 1991. It was just the first of many innovative, easy-to-use products that have earned SMART worldwide recognition and made it the undisputed global leader in the interactive whiteboard product category. Its strategic alliance with IntelCorporation and strong commitment to research and development have accelerated SMART’s growing line of products. Thanks to their simplicity and powerful ability to connect people, SMART products have transformed learning for more than 25 million students around the world.
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