[ASCD (703) 575-5461]

         ASCD Edge is an exciting and dynamic (internet-based) professional networking community for educators. Its interface is somewhat similar to Facebook (albeit more intuitive and useful), and many users will already feel at home with the design conventions.
         The top navigation bar provides quick access to videos (currently 199), audios (56), photos (2,051), blogs (1,437), members (40,346 ), groups (156), lesson plans, message board and chat. The sidebar links to My Categories, for personalization: Profile, media, discussions, group, friends, message center, edit photo/settings, and edit profile.  On the ASCD Job Ramp page, employers can post available jobs, and members can search for jobs by entering criteria. ASCD also maintains a database of applicants' resumes which can be accessed by employers.
          The Live Events page lists upcoming ASCD educational conferences. Many educators may find the high quality video segments of presentations given in past conferences to be valuable resources, e.g., "The Motivated Student: Five Strategies to Inspire," by Bob Sullo at the Annual Conference in San Francisco, March 26-28, 2011.
           The website is a unique virtual space where educators can find easy-to-use tools for exchanging ideas and interacting electronically with other members of the educational community: Post comments, lesson plans, email, YouTube videos and/or other information; or view the large collection of multimedia material and topics posted by others.

Webber HearBuilder Auditory Memory - Professional Edition
Webber HearBuilder Phonological Awareness Training - Professional 
(Super Duper Publications (800) 277-8737)

Special Education students often have specific training needs prior to becoming readers. Webber HearBuilder Auditory Memory and Webber HearBuilder Phonological Awareness Training address those needs with authority, and have a fun aspect that is an important component!  Tied for this year's BESSIE in the Multi-Level Special Education category, HearBuilder Auditory Memory Training and HearBuilder Phonological Awareness are delivered on hybrid CD-ROMS along with instruction booklets, and both programs are packed with entertaining and highly motivating exercises. Additional bonuses for teachers are a simple install and the student-directed interface.
         Each CD is designed around a theme - in
Auditory Memory, the student becomes a Recall Agent and must help solve mysteries; Phonological Awareness challenges the student to create his/her own rock band - and both promote pre-reading memory skills.
         Auditory Memory (the ability to remember what is heard) features five areas of practice: Numbers, Words, Details, Closure, and WH Info. Phonological Awareness (of the sound of the spoken word) includes Phoneme Blending, Deletion, Addition, and Manipulation, Sentence Segmentation, Syllable Blending, and Rhyming.
         The courseware is delivered flawlessly, and meets or beats best-practice standards. World-class animation, engaging characters, excellent sound quality, and compelling reward games help to keep students on-track and eager for more. Well done, Super Duper - we look forward to seeing what's next!


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