Saturday, November 2, 2013
21st Century Math Projects now INTERACTIVE on NextLesson!
Math Friends join hands! There is some exciting news in the 21st Century Math Project universe. Recently, I was approached by an innovative ed tech start-up NextLesson. They expressed interest in my projects and they desired them to be included in their marketplace. At first I was conflicted because I feel a sense of loyalty to TeachersPayTeachers, but eventually I decided to dive right in for a number of reasons.
NextLesson aims to compete with other curriculum/textbook companies by posting only the best authentic project-based, real world relevant content to their site. They have the leg up on the archaic textbook industry because the can write new content that is available to educators every day. While TPT has been a tremendous blessing for our family, with its continued growth it may become so voluminous that it is difficult to find the best resources. NextLesson eliminates that by filtering these resources and only allowing what they determine to be the best on their site. Hearing these aspects of their vision got me excited about their platform. The more I thought about it, I realized that there would be a specific market for this need and that someone will seize it... And that is what they are doing.
The final major selling point was actually the selling point. NextLesson is already positioning themselves with districts and other educational entities to provide access to their entire site. Their site will have resources from K to 12 in all content areas. Its interface and company vision will be very attractive to districts. I think my projects ultimately make more sense to a district because they cover a wide range of course from 6 to 12. Any individual teacher would likely never be able to use every one, but a district certainly could.
Given the nature of my projects, I have long thought that allowing them to be interactive would add a lot of value. Their site makes it possible. Basically students and teachers will have accounts and a teacher can organize the files associated with a project anyway they see fit. I will be able to add links to relevant sites, video clips and really push the teacher resources to the max. This has also inspired me to consider how I could create PDF forms of my projects so they can be completely digital. Paperless is the future! The possibility to create interactive games and applications adapted from my projects will be an exciting future.
As an extra bonus, the site (while still pretty young) is intuitive, clean and very easy to use from a teacher's perspective. It will only improve in time and that is also exciting.
Lots of exciting excitement, eh?
If you have bought and project and you want this interactive option for your classroom, you can have access to the project for free. If you redownload the file from TPT, it will now feature instructions and a Promocode for you to claim it. You'll just have to visit nextLesson and sign up. Go do it. Explore. Play around. Have fun. Math it up.