RM Rolls Out Classroom Science Gear, New Whiteboard Software
RM Educational Software has released four new educational devices in its TTS ("Teaching Technology Skills") line of classroom science gear, including a camera with scope adapter and robots designed for K-6 students. The company has also released version 3.4 of its RM Easiteach classroom software.
Included in the new science gear lineup is the RM Tuff-Cam with a microscope attachment The camera itself offers still and video capture with a resolution up to 3.1 megapixels. The rubberized, pistol-shaped unit includes a 1.5-inch TFT LCD screen, 64 MB internal memory (expandable via SD card slot), built-in flash, self timer, audio recording capabilities, docking, tripod mount, and support for Mac OS X and Windows.
The Tuff-Cam can be mounted on the newly released RM Tuff-Scope, a microscope attachment for the camera. The unit supports magnifications of up to 400x with a 2x continuous optical zoom. The unit can also work as a portable stand-alone microscope.
RM has also introduced two programmable robots for K-6 students. These include the Bee-Bot and the Pro-Bot. The Bee-Bot, shaped like a bumble bee, allows for simple programming and is designed to teach control and directional language, with memory for up to 40 sequential steps. The Pro-Bot, a car-shaped robot, is more advanced, supporting both simple directional commands and more complex commands. It includes voice activation, a bumper sensor, and support for using K'NEX systems.
The RM Tuff-Cam runs $180; the Tuff-Scope sells for $40; the Bee-Bot is $70; and the Pro-Bot goes for $110.
RM has also released Easiteach 3.4, an update to the company's universal software for interactive whiteboards, pads, and classroom clickers. The new version includes support for widescreen displays, including laptops; support for RF handsets, including Renaissance Responder, EInstruction RF Gen2, Response Card RF, and Genee; new skin, thumbnail, and fill options; improved anti-aliasing of text; and Vista support. The latest update is for Windows only, although Easiteach is available for Mac OS X as well.
Upgrades to version 3.4 are free for those who purchased the software between Sept. 1, 2007 and Jan. 31, 2008. For those who purchased the software prior to Sept. 1, the upgrade runs $25. Crossgrades from other software solutions run $50.
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About the author: David Nagel is the executive editor for 1105 Media's online education technology publications, including THE Journal and Campus Technology. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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