News Briefs, May 8, 2020

May 8, 2020 | Volume 51, Number 10

Voyager Sopris Learning, a division of Cambium Learning Group (Dallas), in April launched ClearSight, a new online platform delivering interim and benchmark assessments for K-11 students. ClearSight is an online assessment platform covering English language arts and math for grades K-11, and science for grades 5, 8, and 11. ClearSight helps district educators administer adaptive interim and fixed-form benchmark assessments throughout the year, ahead of end-of-year summative tests. VSL said ClearSight was ideal for school districts using Cambium Assessment (formerly the assessment division of the American Institutes for Research) for their summative tests.

While schools are closed and to continue to support literacy at home, Scholastic (New York) in May launched Scholastic Summer Read-a-Palooza, a free program designed to increase book access (both digitally and through book donations) and provide engaging experiences to keep kids reading this summer. For the program, Scholastic partnered with United Way Worldwide. Children can join through the newly created summer zone on Scholastic Home Base, a free digital destination.

The Yale Child Study Center-Scholastic Collaborative for Child & Family Resilience and author Denise Daniels, a child development expert, and creator of The Moodsters, in April released a free workbook for families to share with children ages 4–10, who are learning how to cope during the coronavirus pandemic. First Aid for Feelings: A Workbook to Help Kids Cope During the Coronavirus Pandemic (available in English and Spanish) can be downloaded at the family resources section of the Scholastic Learn At Home remote learning digital hub.

Learning technology platform provider D2L (Kitchener, Waterloo, Canada), in April said that New York-based Pace University selected the Brightspace platform as its learning management system for its campuses in New York City and Westchester. 

IBM (Armonk, NY) in May launched its Open P-TECH, a free digital education platform focused on workplace learning and digital skills, on a global scale. The platform equips 14-20-year-old learners and educators with foundational technology competencies including technologies such as AI, cloud computing and cybersecurity, and professional skills like Design Thinking. Content is offered in English, Portuguese and Spanish. P-TECH (Pathways to Technology Early College High School) first was launched in 2011 and the model has been adopted in 220 schools across 24 countries with more than 150,000 students and 600 corporate partners. In tandem with this, IBM is offering online webinars on a variety of workplace topics, and activities that students can engage in over the summer. Students and teachers can register for Open P-TECH at https://open.ptech.org.

Carnegie Learning (Pittsburgh) in May released LiveHint, an app to help teachers facilitate independent learning and assist students and parents who need additional support while learning at home. The app gives middle and high school students the opportunity to ask for hints while working through problems in the Carnegie Learning textbook. The app works on any mobile phone, Chromebook, or web browser and will soon be available for Google Home and Alexa so students can simply ask a question and receive instant verbal prompts and hints.

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