Magazine article Curriculum Administrator

Mouse Clicks to Cat Swipes: New Technologies Help Link Traditional Classroom Media to Relevant Web Content. (the Online Edge)

Magazine article Curriculum Administrator

Mouse Clicks to Cat Swipes: New Technologies Help Link Traditional Classroom Media to Relevant Web Content. (the Online Edge)

Article excerpt

Suppose the students in your school could go directly from textbook topics to interactive multimedia on the Web that would enrich and extend that content. Texts would then come alive through animations, simulations, film clips, sound bites, 360-degree panoramic views, and virtual reality experiences to take students far beyond the print medium. Discussions about Martin Luther King might link to his "I Have a Dream" speech, presentations on French culture could let students visit virtual Paris, and topics on ocean exploration might feature video from the discovery of the Titanic. But while such realities have not yet reached most text-based curricula, new "convergence" technologies are linking traditional classroom media to relevant Web content, such as those that follow.

SciLINKS

Two years ago the National Science Teachers Association, www.nsta.org, launched the proprietary sciLINKS initiative that contracts with publishers to insert special content codes next to topics in the margins of new textbooks. When users enter those codes at the sciLINKS Web site, www. scilinks.org, they are linked immediately to selected online resources such as news items, enrichment articles and interactive activities. To illustrate, if you visit the site as "guest" and enter the code HE084, you can access recommended resources on temperate deciduous forests and rainforests, and if you enter the code HE100 you will find online information on lakes, reservoirs and ponds. Holt, Rinehart and Winston, www.hrw.com, was the first company to adopt sciLINKS for texts in science, social studies and language arts, and other leading publishers, including Harcourt School Publishers, www.hbschool.com, have now signed contracts.

:CUECAT READER

Among the most exciting new convergence technologies are the various devices that allow users to jump directly from codes in print materials to Web sites without even touching a keyboard or a mouse. One of the best examples is the :CueCat reader from Digital :Convergence, www.digitalconvergence. …

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