Inspiration Software Honors 15 Educators From Around the World With Inspired Visual Learning Awards

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Teachers, School Library Media Specialists Rewarded With Inspiration, Kidspiration and InspireData, New Classroom Technology and Professional Development Opportunities

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We are proud to honor these 15 remarkable educators and know that with the new visual learning software, technology and professional development opportunities supported by our awards, they will have even more stories of creative teaching and improved student learning to share with us in the future.

Inspiration Software®, Inc. today announced the 15 educators and their students from around the world who will receive Inspired Visual Learning Awards. The 2008-2009 awards program recognizes three Gold Star and 12 Silver Star winners for creatively using the company's visual learning software tools , Inspiration®, Kidspiration® and InspireData®, in their classrooms. More than 220 entries from 11 countries were received in the inaugural year of this award program.

Top honors went to the three Gold Star winners: Jason Rushing, technology integration specialist, Humann Elementary School, Lincoln Public Schools, Lincoln, Neb; Kimberly Seder, media specialist, Cathedral School, Diocese of Raleigh, N.C.; and Cheryl Teaters, biology teacher, Gateway School District, Monroeville, Pa.

All 15 winners receive a new Intel-powered convertible classmate PC, donated by Intel Corporation. The three Gold Star winners also receive $2,500 to support professional development and/or classroom technology purchases, a 10-pack volume license for one of Inspiration Software's visual learning software tools, along with the supporting lesson plan books, and a six-month Atomic Learning video subscription. The 12 Silver Star award winners receive $1,000 for professional development and/or classroom technology and a five-pack volume license for an Inspiration Software product with supporting lesson plan books.

"The educators who entered our new Inspired Visual Learning Awards program gave us great insights into how visual learning is being used across the curriculum at their schools around the world, as well as what is needed to help them take the integration of this proven instructional strategy to the next level," said Mona Westhaver, president and co-founder, Inspiration Software. "We are proud to honor these 15 remarkable educators and know that with the new visual learning software, technology and professional development opportunities supported by our awards, they will have even more stories of creative teaching and improved student learning to share with us in the future."

The three Gold Star Inspired Visual Learning Award winners are illustrative of the creative ways that teacher around the world are using visual learning to help students of all ages and abilities to learn and build critical thinking skills.

Gold Star winner Jason Rushing teaches educators in his school - and throughout the state of Nebraska - how to use Kidspiration with their students to teach math, language arts and science, mapping back to state and district standards. His award will support attendance at the National Educational Computing Conference (NECC) in June in Washington, D.C., as well as to purchase digital cameras and even more Kidspiration 3 upgrade licenses for his school.

At the Cathedral School, Diocese of Raleigh, N.C., Gold Star winner and media specialist Kimberly Seder worked with teachers and students in grades 4-8 to use Inspiration and Kidspiration to plan and organize a Web celebrating the school's centennial. They created a timeline and learned about the events that had changed the world, the country, their state and their school during the past century. She will use the Inspired Visual Learning Award for a workshop at the school on integrating technology into the curriculum and to purchase more laptops for the school.

For high school biology teacher and Gold Star winner Cheryl Teaters, technology and visual learning are integral parts of daily science instruction. This school year, her students used Inspiration to complete an innovative cell analogy project, where they compared each individual organelle of a cell to another "organism" such as a shopping mall or a car. Teaters plans to use her award to spread the word about Inspiration and visual learning in her school with a professional development workshop, and to purchase digital cameras and other technology to support the school-wide use of visual learning.

The 12 other talented teachers, who won Silver Star Inspired Visual Learning Awards, are:

  • Megan Clapp, technology integration coordinator, Cooperative Educational Services, Therapeutic Day School, Trumbull, Conn.
  • Michael Eppolito, teacher, Flood Brook Union School, Windsor Southwest Supervisory Union, Londonderry, Vt.
  • Sabine Fleshner, teacher, Millard Public School, Omaha, Neb.
  • Jennifer Frederick, kindergarten teacher, Fairview Elemenatry School, Lake Charles, La.
  • Paula Hogue, art teacher, Mount Saint Charles Academy, Woonsocket, R.I.
  • Saima Khalique, teacher, Rawalpindi, Pakistan
  • Sherri Miller, instructional technology resource teacher, Gloucester County Public Schools, Gloucester, Va.
  • Mickey Monahan, Advanced Placement government teacher, James Wood High School, Winchester, Va.
  • Maureen Murphy, technology teacher/coordinator, St. Celestine School, Elmwood Park, Ill.
  • Michelle O'Brien, fifth-grade teacher, Mary Eyre Elementary School, Salem-Keizer School District, Salem, Ore.
  • Vicky Richter, library media center teacher, Benjamin Middle School, Benjamin School District 25, West Chicago, Ill.
  • Oanh Vovan, head of modern languages, American School of Bombay, Mumbai, India

This awards program builds on the company's decade-long tradition of honoring educators for their creative use of visual learning in the classroom. Through its own and other awards programs that it has sponsored, such as the Intel Schools of Distinction Awards, Inspiration Software has recognized hundreds of educators from the United States and other countries around the world.

For more information about Inspiration Software and the Inspired Visual Learning Awards, visit http://www.inspiration.com.

About Inspiration Software, Inc.
Recognized as the leader in visual thinking and learning, Inspiration Software, Inc.'s award-winning software tools, Inspiration®, Kidspiration and InspireData®, are based on proven visual learning methodologies that help students think, learn and achieve. With the powerful combination of visual learning and technology, students in grades K-12 learn to clarify thoughts, organize and analyze information, integrate new knowledge and think critically. Founded more than 25 years ago by Donald Helfgott and Mona Westhaver, the company's visual learning software tools are used today by more than 25 million students and teachers worldwide.

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