All the Upgrades and Updates From Apple, Google and More at ISTE 2018


All the Upgrades and Updates From Apple, Google and More at ISTE 2018

By Stephen Noonoo     Jun 28, 2018

All the Upgrades and Updates From Apple, Google and More at ISTE 2018

Look what the wind blew into the Windy City. Earlier this week more than 18,000 attendees from 87 countries gathered in Chicago for ISTE, one of the largest K-12 education technology conferences and trade shows in the world. Joining them were an additional 6,000 reps from companies big and small.

As ever, it was a popular time for product announcements. Here we’ve rounded up some of the biggest launches and partnerships dropping in time for back to school. (What, too soon?)

Check out the complete roundup below.

Software Updates

Google is reorganizing its Classroom platform to make it easier to sort materials by topic.

Amplify is doubling down on its K-8 curriculum offerings. Close Reading is a dystopian graphic novel designed to help middle schoolers carefully analyze text. Fractions covers math standards for grades 3-6 and features a storyline and what the company calls “personalized feedback” through an online tutor. Both are designed as supplemental curriculum.

Frontline Education, a provider of K-12 data software, is developing a new feature (or “skill”) for Alexa that allows administrators to access data, such as teacher evaluation reports and employment rates, through voice-activated commands. It will begin piloting the skill later this year.

Following its March announcement, Apple’s Schoolwork app for iPad is now available for teachers. It already integrates with apps like iBooks, Swift Playgrounds, GeoGebra AR, Kahoot and Molecule. More about the app in our detailed coverage from March.

A new open platform from Curriculum Pathways, called Crio, lets teachers build lessons using multimedia and assessment features (e.g. video, quizzes) and share them publicly with other users. There’s also a portfolio feature for students to save their work.

McGraw-Hill introduces a new English language arts software for grades 2-7 called Redbird Language Arts & Writing. The company describes it as a “digital, adaptive personalized learning solution.”

SMART Technologies adds new collaboration features to its Learning Suite Online software, as well as a new remote device management system that works with third-party devices (iOS, Chrome, Windows, etc) and its own hardware.

Kahoot adds the ability to create and host quizzes and other content from its mobile app.

CoSpaces Edu, which already offers a virtual-reality creation tool, has added AR support to its platform, allowing teachers and students to layer their creations on top of real-world environments.

New Hardware

Belkin Education debuted two versions of its Chrome OS keyboard, which connects to an individual Chromebook tablet via a secure wired connection. The keyboards don’t need batteries or charging.

Galaxy Next Generation launches both the G2 Klik, a wireless presentation system, and its Slim series interactive flat panel display.

Osmo, which makes tangram-like puzzles that integrate with an iOS app, releases a new case and base station for iPads.

New Curriculum

Kano, best known for its hands-on coding kits for students, has unveiled a new coding curriculum for novices, along with new professional development offerings.

POWERUP Toys is launching a line of classroom kits with templates, instructions and motors that let students turn ordinary paper airplanes into motorized ones. The kits range in complexity designed for various age levels.

UBTECH Robotics introduces a new robotics kit and curriculum, UKIT, and Yanshee, a robot with an AI interface with a programmable Raspberry Pi.

STEM Education Works officially opened up shop during the conference. The new company, owned by SDI Innovations, makes a robotic arm and a corresponding STEM curriculum.

Minecraft: Education Edition is offering a free “Update Aquatic,” which adds oceans and underwater biomes to the game.

Team Ups

IBM’s Watson Education—the education version of its supercomputer—is partnering up with Scholastic and Edmodo. Scholastic will contribute articles, media and other content to Watson’s search tool, which is powered by machine learning. Edmodo is working with IBM to develop a tool that will recommend learning resources to teachers based on student preferences and learning progression.

Illuminate Education, which provides data dashboards and products for analyzing student information, now integrates with Google Classroom.

Coming this fall, ISTE members will receive exclusive access to a new TED Masterclass course centered around strengthening the way educators can use storytelling to share their successes and challenges. At the end of the course, participants will create their own TED Talk, which may be featured on the Masterclass app or lead to an invitation to speak at next year’s ISTE conference in Philadelphia.

ISTE is also partnering with D2L and California’s Dominican University for a series of online courses called ISTE U.

Studies & Reports

A new report from iNACOL profiles the strategies that eight states are using to support and fund education innovation.

SMART also releases a new whitepaper based on a survey with nearly 500 educators. The report seeks to identify edtech “capabilities” that, when built up in students, may lead to better learning outcomes.

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