Fifty of the best ed-tech products for colleges and schools


Ko’s Journey (Imagine Education)

Ko’s Journey is a 12-hour middle school math game that takes a targeted approach to math instruction in a part-time, six-week program focusing on the critical areas of the Common Core standards.

“We are using this extensively in multiple pilot schools within the Los Angeles Unified School District,” said Scott Spector, career and technical education advisor for the district’s Office of Curriculum and Instruction. “We have seen dramatic test-score improvement with those students using Ko’s Journey in their math classes. … Students have been engaged in the process of learning math. This has not happened at many of the schools currently using Ko’s Journey. It has also helped the teachers with classroom management—students spend more time on task.”

LabQuest (Vernier Software & Technology)

Vernier’s LabQuest 2 is a standalone interface used to collect sensor data with a built-in graphing and analysis application. The large, high-resolution touch screen makes it easy and intuitive to collect, analyze, and share data from experiments, Vernier says, and its wireless connectivity encourages collaboration and personalized learning.

“The strongest feature of the LabQuest unit is that it is simple enough for an elementary student to use for experiments, and the data that it can produce are detailed enough that it also can be used for high school and college inquiries,” said Connie Bachmann, principal of a K-5 STEM magnet school in the Michigan City Area Schools. “Because it is handheld, it is easy to use by individuals or in a small group setting. … Our students have truly gained a better understanding of scientific inquiry as they personally engaged in data collection with the LabQuests.” Another reader called the LabQuest “rugged and affordable, and customer service is top notch.”

MyLearningPlan

MyLearningPlan is a professional development management and evaluation system that offers fast and easy planning, tracking, and evaluation of all kinds of professional learning in one comprehensive, online system.

“Our district uses MyLearningPlan to organize professional development activities,” said Jennifer Brucker, coordinator of professional development for Pennsylvania’s Methacton School District. “The activities are displayed in an electronic catalog for teachers to enroll in for an in-service day, flex hours, and/or district training. MyLearningPlan then enables an administrator to confirm attendance and send the activity to the state for Act 48 credit to be given. The process is effortless! We also use MyLearningPlan to run district reports to determine where we have spent our federal funds for professional learning. … Overall, MyLearningPlan has changed the way we do business in our district.”

My Big Campus (Lightspeed Systems)

My Big Campus offers a safe, monitored environment for students to blog, hold discussions, and collaborate on group projects online. A standalone version is available for individual teachers or professional networks, while a district-wide version integrates with Lightspeed’s Web Filter to offer cross-district sharing of resources and additional management and reporting features.

“We are using My Big Campus in a variety of ways,” said Sandy Bader, technology training specialist for the Unified School District of De Pere, Wis. “Teachers are using it with their classes to have online discussions. … Teachers are also creating ‘public’ groups as a way of communicating with parents, although the communication at that level is providing information to parents (not two-way). It has allowed teachers to have their own web presence and has given students and teachers a way to communicate online that is safe and controlled.”

eCampus News Staff