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Curriculum Products
In Summit Reflections, educators review tools that they have seen at an EdSurge Tech for Schools Summit. Summit Reflections can only be completed onsite at the event; reviewers are incentivized to leave reviews.
Speech And Language Pathologist, School Type: Elementary School, Middle School, High School, High ELL Population, Low Income Population
Jun 13, 2015

full starfull starfull starfull starfull star Advocate

Usage: I am a Speech and Language Pathologist working in a inclusion setting in an Elementary school setting. I work with the English Langauge arts teachers and am trying to integrate language goals into their curriculum as well as cover the students needs as outlined in their Individual Education Plans and be on track with the Common Core Standards. This literacy learning game seems to provide a wonderful learning game for students to learn their writing skills in a natural looking game format - similar to those games they play on their own PS4's - maps and city environment scenarios!.

Strengths: 1. It has real life situations and graphics to interest the students 2. It gives the students keyboarding practice - which they need 3. It helps with teaching for the LONG WRITE in the MCAS test 4. The real life problem solving is awesome!

Suggestions for Improvement: I think having the program read the questions to the students would be helpful as an additional feature I like the fact that there is a second story coming out at a lower grade level but think that there could be some options for math word problems that would apply to real life costs and money management that could be incorporated. I would like to see some vocabulary worked into the overall writing to increase a students word knowledge.

Verdict: I would advocate to use it because it provides a method of helping students learn to write using proven writing strategies in a game format instead of just story starters and writing paper! It also alows teacher access to data from student performance that can be used for grading purposes.

Tracy, Technology Integration. School Type: Elementary School, Middle School, High School, Low Income Population, Project Based School, 1:1 Devices, BYOD Devices, Blended Learning
Jul 12, 2015

full starfull starfull starfull starfull star Advocate

Usage: Could be used as daily drill or weekly review or conversation starter to bring literacy into any class

Strengths: Valuable literacy tool, and very well thought out as far as what it can be used for. The students and teachers would benefit from having the resource for days when the teacher is out to keep on task, as well as use it as a tool for early finishers. Project based learning needs to be described, students who can verbalize their thoughts and feelings can also write them, but the idea of writing has taken this away from them! I recall one of my first literacy lessons as a child, telling a story to someone on a big type typewriter and they printed it out for me to read and learn words from. If students can verbalize what they can write....it is a confidence builder

Suggestions for Improvement: Would be great to be able to share the output between teachers on the same team so they could discuss strategies to be used with a student needing accommodations

Run a WAVE ADA scan on the site to aid students with disabilities.

Be able to share lessons among teachers or school wide, let students from other classes see what other students are working on.

Have a way for parents to see what is produced, as well as allowing the videos to be exported as part of a student portfolio, or import information from other places, for students to tell their story in another context.

Verdict: It is easy to use, questions can be adapted and shared with others

Teacher, School Type: Middle School, Low Income Population, College Prep School, 1:1 Devices
Feb 28, 2015

full starfull starfull starfull starfull star Advocate

Usage: I would use it to remediate and improve the literacy skills of my lowest quartile studnets. Currently my school uses Achieve 3000 but this programs seems more engaging. The program would be used during a 45 minute reading intervention block to help students with comprehension. This reading block would take place as the first period of the morning. Up to 60 students total would work on this per grade level.

Strengths: I am really impressed at the combined graphics with actual learning. I really believe that it would be a benefit especially for low level readers. I would like to see different story lines added to the software to keep it interesting.

Suggestions for Improvement: More story lines Allow teachers to choose what type of article will be added Allow students to access the program from home to work on

Verdict: The product is visually appealing. I believe students would really like to interact with the product and would read it. It has a video game feel to it which students would appreciate. In addition, the price tag for up to 140 students makes it an easy sell to schools for its benefit

Response from Read to Lead: After the Storm: Regarding accessing from home, if a teacher selects students to be able to play the game during out-of-school hours, they can set these parameters directly in the teacher dashboard. On the flip side, teachers can also limit the day, hour, and modules that students have access to if they desire to control the pace of their class

Asst. Principal, School Type: Elementary School, Middle School
Mar 1, 2015

full starfull starfull starfull starfull star Advocate

Usage: I would share this with my teachers since it is aligned to common core standards. It is also great for the diverse levels of students within a classroom. I found that it is very effective to track students and to show students their strengths and weaknesses.

Strengths: I like how you have the data easily assessable for each individual student. I think being able to see the standard-identifying what needs to be retaught, pulled into small groups and showing a student an area or where they had difficulty is priceless!

Suggestions for Improvement: I think having the text on lexile levels would be helpful or if you could have a pre-assessment to determine a starting point for a student. That would be wonderful. I realize the ultimate goal is for all students is to be on grade level, but is some cases -they are just not there yet!

Verdict: As I stated in the previous question, this is a great way to track a students progress. to identify a students strength and weakness. You can use it as a teaching tool with a class, determine what needs to be taught in a small group or retaught as a whole.

Teacher, School Type: Elementary School, Low Income Population
Sep 12, 2015

full starfull starfull starfull starfull star Advocate

Usage: I would use this to make reading fun for the students. No student likes to sit there and just read. The students need a way to have fun and read as well.

Strengths: The program is digital. That means they can access it from anywhere. I can place lesson on the program. That they can use at home. It cuts down on the paper work for me as well.

Suggestions for Improvement: The digital version is $99. My question is : If my school purchased it as a whole for every one to use at the school, would there be a price break for the school district purchasing the program. Also, i am concern with the program being age appropriate for elementary kids. Its a middle school to high school program. Is there a way for me to incorporate it in to my fourth grade class?

Verdict: Our reading scores for our district could be better. Therefore, my argument would be to purchase the program so that the students could begin to be more interactive with their reading.

Margaret, Teacher. School Type: High School, Low Income Population
Feb 28, 2015

full starfull starfull starfull starfull star Advocate

Usage: I would use this for classroom discussion and developing common core skills in literacy. The students can work on concepts for homework as well

Strengths: This is a great product to engage students and get them interested in doing homework because it looks more like a game. It has lots of reading levels for special educators. This is great for collecting data and focused on common core. This also allows students to get involved in real life scenarios and how to problem solve and critically think.

Suggestions for Improvement: This is not for higher level high schoolers so maybe involving higher grade levels. Graphics are kind of goodly looking. Maybe incomporating math facts

Verdict: I would recommend this program for teachers and they can use this for classroom discussions and homework completion.

Tracy, Technology Integration. School Type: Elementary School, Middle School, High School, Low Income Population, Project Based School, 1:1 Devices, BYOD Devices, Blended Learning
Jul 12, 2015

full starfull starfull starfull starfull star Advocate

Usage: Could be used as daily drill or weekly review or conversation starter to bring literacy into any class

Strengths: Valuable literacy tool, and very well thought out as far as what it can be used for. The students and teachers would benefit from having the resource for days when the teacher is out to keep on task, as well as use it as a tool for early finishers

Suggestions for Improvement: Would be great to be able to share the output between teachers on the same team so they could discuss strategies to be used with a student needing accommodations

Run a WAVE ADA scan on the site to aid students with disabilities.

Be able to share lessons among teachers or school wide

Verdict: It is easy to use, questions can be adapted and shared with others

Special Educator, School Type: High School, BYOD Devices
Feb 28, 2015

full starfull starfull starfull starfull star Advocate

Usage: Good for feedback and data, can be used for teacher data and student improvement

Strengths: I stand feedback to students, less "work" for teachers to grade but still meaningful to both teacher and student

Suggestions for Improvement: back mapping to fill in missing skills, expand grade levels, read a load option for ELL and Special Education

Verdict: Common core aligned, immediate feedback, linked to brain pop,

Dara, Tech Teacher. School Type: Middle School, Low Income Population
Feb 28, 2015

full starfull starfull starfull starfull star Advocate

Usage: Requires students to use critical thinking skills. Problem solve

Strengths: Students have to gather evidence from different sources. Allows teacher to give immediate feedback on student misconceptions. Real world application

Suggestions for Improvement: Add more grade levels Audio for students with learning disabilities.

Verdict: Redirects struggling students to a support activity.

Becky, Peer Assistance And Review Consulting Teacher. School Type: Middle School, High School, High ELL Population, Low Income Population, 1:1 Devices
Jul 12, 2015

full starfull starfull starfull starno star Advocate

Usage: There's an innovation to the scenario that moves a student from beginning to production and it sounds like the work is solidly grounded in content standards. The journalism piece, for an ELA teacher, is fascinating. However, I am more intrigued with the community in crisis model mentioned as that feels even more real and relevant to learners.

Strengths: I like that is personalizes a students production and creation of a product- a magazine- and has all of the resources and data students need to analyze in one space.

Suggestions for Improvement: ELL and SPED accommodations.
Teacher privileges to adjust text within the program to support students with varied learning needs.
An easy system that produces the final product to eliminate transference of writing and work to a new template.

Verdict: I worry about there being an absence of accommodation or differentiation for ELL learners and the absence of an option for audio support is also of concern for SPED learners. I would recommend it for the way it seems to weave in a variety of standards in a real life scenario.

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