NEW YORK, Oct. 18, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The internet's most popular website for teachers just got a bold new upgrade and redesign. Scholastic (NASDAQ: SCHL), the global children's publishing, education and media company, today unveiled an improved Teacher Site on Scholastic.com that serves as the content and e-Commerce hub for everything a teacher needs most for use in the classroom. More than 1.6 million visitors to Scholastic.com each week access over 100,000 pages of free content and teaching resources as well as the Book Wizard® search tool that helps teachers find just-right books for their students. They can also purchase books and classroom materials through Scholastic Book Clubs and the Scholastic Teacher Store Online™.
"Since it went on the internet in 1995, the Scholastic.com Teacher Site has served as the web's most reliable hub for the tools teachers want and need most -- daily lesson plans, student activities, information about great children's books and teaching materials that drive achievement. More and more teachers have turned to the internet as a vital teaching resource in recent years, and they've come to Scholastic for our rich content and applications," said Dick Robinson, Chairman, President and CEO of Scholastic. "This site redesign streamlines the search for content and resources teachers use in their classrooms every day, helping them save time and be more effective in meeting the needs of their students."
As part of the site redesign, Scholastic surveyed thousands of teachers to validate the resources they want and the user experience that would best serve their needs. The new Scholastic.com Teacher Site has faster, more targeted search and browse functionality, new all-in-one-place collections of ready-to-go content, more whiteboard-friendly interactive units and more classroom help teachers can use every day.
Highlights of the rich content and book search tools now available or newly improved on the Scholastic.com Teacher site include the following:
- The Book Wizard ®-- the site's "killer app" which has seen a 95% increase in visits since 2009. This book search tool is designed to help teachers and librarians find the right book for the right child at the right time according to reading level, interest level, grade and genre. The Book Wizard pulls its resources from a comprehensive library of 50,000 carefully curated, quality children's books from all publishers.
- Everything You Need collections -- a new feature that includes "everything you need" to teach a specific topic from Thanksgiving to volcanoes to Abraham Lincoln. Collections include lesson plans, resources, photos and videos, classroom activities and practical ideas to implement during the specific lesson.
- Daily Starters – also a new feature –free, quick and easy grade-level activities to kick-off the day or a class period.
- More than 7,000 practical Lesson Plans and resources -- on any subject, for any grade level, at any time-- provided free from the Scholastic library of resources.
- A team of 15 mentor teachers -- Scholastic Teacher Bloggers -- with teaching tips, practical ideas and ready-to-use resources along with daily photos and videos to support teachers seeking to improve their practice or build on the experience of other teachers.
- More than 400 Student Activities -- interactive units and learning games for whiteboard or computer that bring the curriculum to life in reading/language arts, social studies, science and math.
- The Teacher Helpline – quick answer to a wide range of teachers' questions from Ruth Manna, expert teacher and author of 130 FAQs and Practical Answers.
- The Teacher Store Online™ -- more than 25,000 fiction and non-fiction books and collections, instructional programs, and professional resources at educator-only discount pricing.
Here's what Anne G., a 5th grade teacher from Oregon, had to say about the new teacher site: "Your website is amazing! I have just spent several hours over the past two days exploring possibilities for my classroom. Thank you for a wealth of information, resources and ideas."
Later this school year, the Scholastic Teacher Site will introduce the Teacher Organizer, a personalized dashboard for each of the 2.4 million teachers who use the site. Teachers will be able to save documents, create folders, bookmark particular sections of the site, and share with peers, students and even parents, all through their individualized workspace.
In addition to the extensive free content and resources available on the Scholastic.com Teacher site, other highly trafficked areas of the site include:
- Scholastic Book Clubs NEW COOL (Clubs Ordering Online)– this school year, more than 80% of Scholastic Book Clubs orders are being placed online through NEW COOL with tens of thousands of orders placed ever day during the school year. Teachers and parents can order more simply online using credit cards and accessing a larger selection of quality, affordable children's books than can be offered in the limited space in the paper catalogs distributed through classrooms. In the beloved tradition of Scholastic Book Clubs, the flyers still come home with the students and the books are delivered directly to the teacher – always a moment of celebration in any classroom
- Scholastic Book Fairs® – the chairperson's toolkit is accessed by the PTA, media specialist and other chairpersons who organize and run more than 125,000 Scholastic Book Fairs annually. This useful tool helps the book fair chairperson create a successful and exciting reading event to encourage literacy throughout their particular school and community.
- Scholastic News® – 28 classroom magazines for students in pre-K through grade 12 have an interactive web presence that allows teachers to supplement their lessons with video and other resources to expand on the timely topics covered in the print versions of the magazine.
- Teacher Express® – instantly-available downloadable ebooks for teachers and materials for whiteboard use and classroom instruction.
In the coming year, both the Parents' and the Kids' areas on Scholastic.com will also re-launch with significant enhancements.
For more information about Scholastic, visit our Media Room: http://mediaroom.scholastic.com