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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.
Lauren, Teacher. School Type: Elementary School, 1:1 Devices, Blended Learning

full starfull starfull starfull starfull star Advocate

Usage: For meaningful and high quality, engaging non-fiction text.

Strengths: differentiation:articles can be read aloud.-engaging and interactive-student accounts for sharing progress with teachers

Suggestions for Improvement: I would like to see an online version since my district is using laptops not iPads. I would like to be able to define any word by clicking on it. Cheaper subscriptions or whole class subscription option without quizzes to be more affordable. reader's responses (like a blog) where students can share their thinking with others in the classroom or the world. Option to add post-it's to track their thinking as they read or highlight information.

Verdict: Very engaging, interactive, high quality, teacher feedback.

Asst. Principal, School Type: Elementary School, Middle School

full starfull starfull starfull starfull star Advocate

Usage: It would be great non- fiction text source, as well as great for critical thinking skills and cross curriculum Integregation

Strengths: Awesome- great pictures, easy to use , articles will keep the students Interest, it is great for students at all levels who can read all levels, also you can have it read to you or switch and students can read articles in Spanish

Suggestions for Improvement: Need to be used for other platforms such as Chrome Books

Verdict: Great for Integregation across the curriculum, multi-level learners and ESOL

Brooke, Teacher. School Type: Elementary School

full starfull starfull starfull starfull star Advocate

Usage: This would be a great supplementary application for reading comprehension in the classroom.

Strengths: Has embedded interactivity such as audio of the reading, embedded comprehension assessments, and opportunities for collaboration.

Suggestions for Improvement: Price per students Availability on multiple platforms

Verdict: This is a great reading tool and aligns with Common core state standards.

Literacy Specialist, School Type: Elementary School

full starfull starfull starfull starno star Advocate

Usage: I would use this tool to supplement the Time for Kids magazine subscriptions at the elementary level. It is challenging to find age -appropriate nonfiction text, especially related to current events in elementary schools. It would be beneficial to track students' progress on interactive lessons. The text can be read aloud to students, and there is also a Spanish option, which would support diverse learners.

Strengths: The TFK app provides informational text at the K/1 level, which is challenging to find. Students can listen to the text, which provides a scaffold for those who need it. The interactive features would engage students beyond the print version.

Suggestions for Improvement: I'd like to see more innovation with the product. There should be additional content that is not found within the print resources. Companion videos and multimedia text on the same topics as the articles would be helpful.

Verdict: I would like to see more than just an interactive version of the print magazine.

Teacher, School Type: Elementary School

full starfull starfull starfull starno star Advocate

Usage: We currently use TFK for reading homework. It would be cool to use the app as a follow up in the classroom, particularly with the quiz tool for assessment purposes. I could also see using it during small group reading, as the different vocabulary and discussion features lend themselves to accessibility and depth of understanding.

Strengths: I like that vocabulary words are pulled out and defined with visuals for kids. I also like how interactive the maps and timelines are. The quiz feature provides organized feedback for me.

Suggestions for Improvement: Highlighting as the text is read for low-level readers. Places for kids to respond to discussion questions so I can check for understanding beyond multiple choice. Availability of a middle school edition to extend for accelerated readers.

Verdict: This tool makes nonfiction texts accessible at all levels k-6 and is aligned to common core standards. Literacy is key, and promoted in a rich way by this tool.

Samantha, Teacher. School Type: Elementary School, Low Income Population

full starfull starfull starfull starno star Advocate

Usage: I would use this in daily instruction to integrate non-fiction text to present subject matter. I would also use it to evaluate the students for comprehension.

Strengths: One thing it does really well is that it reads the content aloud to the child. It's also available in Spanish, it not only translates the words you hear but also the words you see.

Suggestions for Improvement: One thing it does really well is that it reads the content aloud to the child. One thing they could add to build upon this is to have the words light up- especially for the k-1 level. This will make it easier for student to follow along.

Verdict: I would recommend it because it is up to date content and relevant to today's news. It also is interactive and on grade level.

Heather, Tech coordinator / teacher. School Type: Elementary School, Low Income Population

full starfull starfull starfull starno star Advocate

Usage: I would use Time for Kids app to reinforce reading skills while teaching about current events, science, history, etc. I could use it with most all of my students ( I teach PK-5 computer class).

Strengths: Wonderful use of images, timelines, etc. good personalization options for reading, very engaging.

Suggestions for Improvement: Cost is an issue, and unfortunately, this resource may not sell itself to a principal with budget constraints. Young children (PK-K) wouldn't be able to do much except listen to the articles.

Verdict: Time for Kids has an easy-to-use layout and is very visually appealing. I love the leveled text choice and text-to-speech function, as well as the quizzes and ability to track student data.

Teacher, School Type: Elementary School, High ELL Population, Low Income Population, Blended Learning

full starfull starfull starfull starno star Advocate

Usage: I would use it in small group reading instruction and also assign it as homework.

Strengths: It has a quiz function, interactive features like polls, and the teacher can assign it for homework as too. I like the text to speech as well.

Suggestions for Improvement: Each grade level issue can have three different levels of reading (below, on, and above grade level) so that it can be used for differentiation.

Verdict: I think because it has the interactive and quiz functions to the magazine, it'll be more engaging to the students than just having them read it. However, the price for a class set might be a challenge for getting it at my school.

Brittany, Teacher. School Type: Elementary School, Low Income Population

full starfull starfull starfull starno star Advocate

Usage: I could use it for homework, read to self time, during small group. During whole group time it could be used for close reading or building background knowledge.

Strengths: Imbedded vocab and videos, love this. Assessments at the end of reading, which enables teachers to track progress.

Suggestions for Improvement: Have the capability to click on any word for a definition and or video. Make it more student interactive by allowing students decide what words they don't know. Also, allow for annotation.

Verdict: It is an interactive text that can be used for independent or whole group lessons.

Teacher, School Type: Middle School, Low Income Population

full starfull starfull starfull starno star Advocate

Usage: I would use this app as a supplement to my curriculum. It would address the ELA standards I have meet in a year.

Strengths: Some of the strengths of this program are the universal access features, being able to change reading level, and the Spanish option.

Suggestions for Improvement: I would like to see it available on more devices besides ipads. Currently my school doesn't have access to multiple ipads for a classroom.

Verdict: I would recommend this app because if the multimedia approach to reading. It would provide a more accessible point of contact for background knowledge.

Fred, Sped. School Type: High School, Low Income Population

full starfull starfull starfull starno star Advocate

Usage: After looking at how the program could read the various stories to the students. I think it would fit in very well as an enrichment tool. It has interactive features that would be great for the students.

Strengths: The graphics were great and the content should be able to hold the interest of the students.

Suggestions for Improvement: I would like to see if you could add a feature where you could type in additional information for the students to listen to.

Verdict: It would be a great product for the students to use independently during their free time.

Fred, Sped. School Type: High School, Low Income Population

full starfull starfull starfull starno star Advocate

Usage: After looking at how the program could read the various stories to the students. I think it would fit in very well as an enrichment tool. It has interactive features that would be great for the students.

Strengths: The graphics were great and the content should be able to hold the interest of the students.

Suggestions for Improvement: I would like to see if you could add a feature where you could type in additional information for the students to listen to.

Verdict: It would be a great product for the students to use independently during their free time.

Grade level chair, School Type: Middle School, College Prep School

full starfull starfull starfull starno star Advocate

Usage: This product is too young for my 7-9 th grade students.

Strengths: I like the connections to vocabulary, assessments, and real world situations.

Suggestions for Improvement: I am excited that the company is working on similar materials for 7-8 grades. Having news stories at the right lexile levels with interactive vocabulary and assessments will be a wonderful addition to my classes in the fall. I am sooo excited!

Verdict: This product is an interactive app which would be great for our lower school to keep up with current events.

Gabriela, Teacher. School Type: Elementary School, Low Income Population

full starfull starfull starfull starno star Advocate

Usage: I would like too user is out for the basis of research based writing. I teach first grade and were do informational writing it is difficult finding information on their level.

Strengths: Finding non fiction text for kids to research with

Suggestions for Improvement: I would like to search by subject, be able to keep article year to year or have an archiving option, also it would be nice if individual articles were able to be read for up our down a level.

Verdict: It is grade adaptable and easier to reuse.

Kathleen, Media specialist. School Type: High School, High ELL Population, Low Income Population, BYOD Devices

full starfull starfull starfull starno star Advocate

Usage: Great interactive magazine for kids includes photos, vocabulary, Spanish translation, and quizzes

Strengths: Time magazine app is bright and visually appealing Interesting for students Multiple forms-app or print or both

Suggestions for Improvement: A bit expensive per student Only in iPad for app. Would be nice for multiple platforms since not every school/student has an iPad.

Verdict: Great resource for students to enrich what they are learning in class Also good resource to add to student learning

Reading Specialist Ed Tech Specialist, School Type: Middle School, Low Income Population

full starfull starfull starfull starno star Advocate

Usage: I would use it during our reading time to combine iPad time with trading. I teach struggling readers.

Strengths: Current events Tech based catches students' attention Videos

Suggestions for Improvement: highlight text as it is reading to students to encourage word tracking Affordability Questions on quizzes need to be higher level Support similar activities technology wise as required on CCSS

Verdict: Reads to students Current events Interactive

Media Specialist, School Type: Middle School, High ELL Population, Low Income Population

full starfull starfull starno starno star Neutral

Usage: for drills
for PARCC prep
to build reading stamina
to discuss text features
create visual literacy
available in spanish

Strengths: visual quality iteractivity expensive per pupil variet of subscription optios

Suggestions for Improvement: search by subject archive articles for next year

Verdict: available in Spanish for ell students teachers can track students reading progress great for visual learners

Christy, 3rd grade math teacher. School Type: Elementary School, High ELL Population

full starfull starno starno starno star Wouldn't Advocate

Usage: I would use it to practice close reading and cross-content curriculum.

Strengths: It would be great for ELL students because it repeats the words and is very interactive for teaching vocabulary. It has high quality images and would be very eye-catching for students. It would also be great for test-prep.

Suggestions for Improvement: Be able to differentiate up, incorporate related math activities, more cross-curriculum activities.

Verdict: You can only differentiate down, you cannot make the reading level higher for higher students. It is also expensive.

Librarian, School Type: Elementary School, Middle School

full starfull starno starno starno star Wouldn't Advocate

Usage: Great for library lessons - students can use in class

Strengths: very easy to use, I think that students will find this to be fun - students are already using to the Time for Kids - I like the questions and that so much is already there. It would mean that teachers would not have to work so hard to prepare a lesson

Suggestions for Improvement: not make it an app make it a web site one password

Verdict: Have to be used with an ipad and not all schools have ipads- really limits use

Lista, Teacher. School Type: Elementary School, Middle School, High School, BYOD Devices

full starfull starno starno starno star Wouldn't Advocate

Usage: We would use it in social studies class and maybe in health for current events.

Strengths: Short sweet current events. Good reading level.

Suggestions for Improvement: It needs to have other platforms. We are BYOD so only some kids have iPads. We would like... Online quizzes Printable/downloadable outline. Discussion questions.

Verdict: It is Timely. Updated and current. It has built in assessments which is great.

Hagit, Teacher. School Type: Elementary School, Low Income Population

full starfull starfull starfull starfull star Advocate

Usage: Sometimes for homework and sometimes for in class learning. I also use it in a club that I created "Cookies and Current" where a group of students and myself read and discuss articles and current events

Strengths: I use it I.u "Cookies and Current" club which is Auchincloss bunch with a little more education built in to it,

Suggestions for Improvement: Make it free to certain schools where student cannot afford it. Other than that I don't think anything else can be improved. I love the beautiful pictures that go along with the articles

Verdict: I love the fact that students are abreast of what is going on in the world. It gives me a chance to discuss with them learn their points of view. Connect with my students and learn a lot about them. I find it personally enjoyable

2nd grade teacher, School Type: Elementary School, Low Income Population, 1:1 Devices

full starfull starfull starfull starfull star Advocate

Usage: I could assign my students research articles on their reading level and interest level. I can keep my students informed on current events in an interactive and engaging way.

Strengths: Interactive, colorful, and rich texts. The texts can be read to students and teachers integrate this in the curriculum.

Suggestions for Improvement: Allow this app tone viewed on other devices other than IPad. Our students have HP notebooks. Also allow teachers to purchase a personal edition of the app.

Verdict: Since we are a longhouse school each of our students will have one-to-one devices. This app would be great to provide additional texts to support reading skills and engage students in current news.

Emily, Teacher. School Type: Middle School, Low Income Population

full starfull starfull starfull starfull star Advocate

Usage: I am a social studies teacher and we do current events weekly. This will allow students to get used to reading electronically and stay up to date on the most current news.

Strengths: They have a project directed towards middle school students which is so needed. My students hate reading so I'm hoping this will help engage them

Suggestions for Improvement: Hopefully this product is free other than that I think this is great for all social studies teachers

Verdict: Out students live in such a bubble and don't always know what is happening outside of Columbia MD. This will allow students to know what's going on in the outside world.

Teacher, School Type: Elementary School, Low Income Population

full starfull starfull starfull starno star Advocate

Usage: I would use this to teach close reading in a guided reading setup. It would allow me to differentiate and have interactive activities for each child to use.

Strengths: Differentiation and interactive learning experience.

Suggestions for Improvement: I would like the alternate tool to have a way to level up the text. Not just go back a level. I would like options for extension activities once you are done reading.

Verdict: I would recommend it because it takes some of the guess work out of having to create a lesson from scratch. It would also make differentiation easier.

Vicki, Fourth grade. School Type: Elementary School, BYOD Devices

full starfull starfull starfull starno star Advocate

Usage: This would be great for reading skills, but it also incorporates map skills, text features, and technology. This would be great for world connections as well.

Strengths: Differentiation is huge! Having the lower level text is great!

Suggestions for Improvement: A higher level text for high readers, writing questions for teachers to grade, and comparing texts would be great.

Verdict: I would recommend this because it allows students to read independently, it seems easy to navigate, and would be a great reading center. It also differentiates for lower level readers.

Terri, Para educator/tech Liaison. School Type: High School, Low Income Population

full starfull starno starno starno star Wouldn't Advocate

Usage: We could probably use it with our lower functioning students but it seemed to be more for elementary students.

Strengths: Students are more engaged when they are using interactive tools as opposed to stationary materials. The use of current events aligned to the common core gives teachers some of their precious time back to them.

Suggestions for Improvement: Expand to include a high school level.

Verdict: Since I am in a high school I would mention my concern that it would not necessarily provide our students the level of rigor we hope to have in our lessons.

Delana, Library Media Specialist. School Type: Middle School, High School, Low Income Population, College Prep School

full starfull starfull starfull starfull star Advocate

Usage: I would use this product in library to help support classroom teachers increase student learning.

Strengths: I personally thought this product was extremely interactive for classroom teachers who are looking to add higher levels of instruction in their classrooms for either the lower level student or the student who is above average.

Suggestions for Improvement: I felt the product is fine as is.....In my personal opinion this product does not require any form of improvement....

Verdict: I feel this would enhance the learning environment for teachers who lack ways to engage students who are above average.

Teacher, School Type: Elementary School, Low Income Population, BYOD Devices

full starfull starfull starfull starfull star Advocate

Usage: It allows students to get current events and have interact reading. There are ties to common core and quizzes. There is also discussion questions and point.

Strengths: Current events Interactive

Suggestions for Improvement: Price Availability on all platforms.

Verdict: Current Events Engaging

2nd grade teacher., School Type: Elementary School

full starfull starfull starfull starfull star Advocate

Usage: I would use this product in small group instruction, centers, and individual readings.

Strengths: Love this product and what it can actually do.

Suggestions for Improvement: Be more kid friends in using

Verdict: I would not advocate against it. I love this product.

Kelly, Kindergarten Teacher. School Type: Elementary School, Low Income Population

full starfull starfull starfull starno star Advocate

Usage: I would use it to discuss science and social studies information in my classroom

Strengths: Fhh

Suggestions for Improvement: Gg

Verdict: It's interactive; age appropriate; engaging

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