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Tag Archives: Ontario

IndieGoGo Crowdfunding Campaign Seeks Starting Goal of $50,000 to Spread Early Literacy Skills to One Million Preschoolers Through Storybooks, eBooks, Smartphone Apps, and Ed-Tech Website

27 May

Teaching Preschoolers Pre-Reading Skills Improves Academic Development, Promotes Lifelong Learning, Increases Family Engagement, and Instills Confidence and Perseverance When Faced With Challenges

By Robert Hoskins

Toronto, Ontario – Ruth Rumack’s Learning Space (RRLS) launched a $50,000 IndieGoGo Crowdfunding campaign that will pre-sell a set of five Alpha-Mania early childhood learning storybooks and other perks that will make teaching pre-reading skills fun for children, parents, teachers and caregivers. The Alpha-Mania storybooks are the result of teaching early literacy programs to thousands of young children over the past 16 years. Click here to watch the video.

Ruth Rumack's Alpha-Mania Crowdfunding Campaign to Promote Early Childhood Literacy

Ruth Rumack’s Alpha-Mania Crowdfunding Campaign to Promote Early Childhood Literacy

All five of the Alpha-Mania books are written and ready to publish. The goal of the crowdfunding campaign will be to pay for large publishing production runs of the Alpha-Mania storybooks, and then digitize the materials and turn them into eBooks and Smartphone apps, and eventually expand the program to an online educational web series and website where caregivers, parents and teachers will be given access to a full library of ed-tech early literacy games and reading resources. The plan is to make ed-tech materials easy to download and use on a wide variety of Smartphones, iPads, tablets and other types of eLearning devices.

Over the years, the Alpha-Mania pre-reading program has given thousands of young children a head start in developing their early literacy skills at RRLS as well as numerous established daycares, preschools, and nurseries throughout Canada. The plan is now to expand the RRLS learning experience and share it with a global audience.

“Using the power of crowdfunding, we would like to not only pre-sell these lifelong learning materials to people and schools that can afford them, but also use a significant portion of the fundraising campaign’s proceeds to ship storybooks to educational centers where they will have the greatest impact,” says Ruth Rumack, RRLS’ Founder and Director of Education. “Regardless of a child’s living environment, many parents are simply not aware of the tremendous benefits that all children receive from learning phonological awareness at an early age.”

“Printing and shipping storybooks to customers is very expensive and time consuming,” adds Evan Brooker, RRLS’s CEO. “But once we raise enough money to digitize our materials and turn our pre-reading games and interactive activities into Smartphone, tablet and laptop apps, we can sell and distribute them worldwide for a fraction of our current costs. Instead of educating thousands, our goal is to raise awareness and teach millions of people the benefits of engaging their children with early literacy skills in order to build a strong foundation for reading and problem solving before they enter kindergarten.”

Crowdfunders who donate to the Alpha-Mania crowdfunding campaign will receive many valuable perks/rewards that will be sold in singles, multi-book packaged deals for small schools and will provide large school districts discounts when materials/training classes are purchased using licensing agreements.

Students, parents, teachers and schools who contribute money to the crowdfunding campaign can choose between unique perks such as attending the launch party, chatting with the author, or naming a character in one of the upcoming stories. Check out the crowdfunding campaign for more details.

Please buy one of the following Alpha-Mania perks to raise awareness for the benefits of teaching preschoolers early childhood learning skills:

Early childhood learning years are critical for preschoolers because research shows that children gain a tremendous advantage in their ability to learn when they are taught to develop, not only academic skills, but also non-cognitive social and emotional skills and behaviors that lead to their long-term success.

There are many non-cognitive skills that are critical for an individual to strive for and succeed in when reaching long-term goals. Researchers have found that habits such as tenacity and perseverance can have just as strong an influence on achievement as intellectual ability.

What attitudes do children have about learning? Do they feel like their abilities in a subject are fixed — “I’m just not good at reading!” or do they recognize they can grow — “I can learn to read, but I need to learn some Alpha-Mania strategies to figure out tricky sounds and words in order to master the fun puzzle of reading.”

“Growth mindset,” for example, is more likely when students believe they can achieve and when they believe that intelligence is malleable rather than fixed. This also helps develop non-cognitive skills such as perseverance, self-regulation, and effective strategies for enhancing student motivation and engagement.

A large portion of the crowdfunding donations will be used to provide Alpha-Mania to underfunded schools and libraries. Donors will receive the satisfaction of knowing that they helped a small child develop pre-reading skills regardless of their current position in society and give them a head start in developing academic skills that will lead to a lifetime of learning as well as arm them with the confidence, tenacity and perseverance they will need when faced with tough lifetime challenges.

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Crowdtilt Rolls Out Rewards-Based Crowdfunding Site for Canadians to Fund Causes, Experiences and Pre-Purchases

12 Jul

Crowdtilt streamlines the entire crowdfunding process to make it simple, secure, and worry-free for Canadian Tilters

By Robert Hoskins

Toronto, Ontario – Crowdtilt.com announces that the San Francisco-based company is now providing crowdfunding campaign services to Canadians (Canadiens) to help users fund experiences, purchases, and causes with help from their friends, family, and extended networks via rewards-based and perks-based crowdfunding campaigns.

Crowdtilt Logo

CrowdtiltOpen offers Tilters Rewards-Based Crowdfunding Campaigns in Canada

In the first wave of fundraising campaigns, the local Crowdtilt team has seen Canadians tilt (successfully reach their fundraising goal) campaigns to throw elaborate bachelor and bachelorette parties, buy group-funded birthday gifts, and even help replace the University of Toronto’s broken radio transmitter. Dedicated to making it easy for groups and communities to come together to make amazing things happen, Crowdtilt streamlines the entire process to make it simple, secure, and worry-free.  Using Crowdtilt is easy and campaigns can be set-up in just three simple steps.

“It has always been Crowdtilt’s intent to come to Canada,” explained Tim Ryan, Country Manager at Crowdtilt Canada. “We’re really excited to see what types of experiences and causes Canadians will tilt. In a country like Canada, the opportunities are endless – everything from a cottage weekend with friends to a group outing to a sports event. Not to mention the social and civic applications.”

“Tilters” (as they’re known) start by identifying their campaign and deciding how much they want to raise. Campaign champions get their friends involved, sharing the news of their campaign with their network by tweeting, emailing and posting to Facebook to generate excitement. As funds pour in, those involved get to watch the campaign tilt, at which point everyone’s cards are charged and funds are received via direct deposit. If users raise more than their targeted amount, an even greater purchase or experience can unfold.

“Whether you’re planning an event or looking for the easiest way to split the cost of a purchase or experience, Crowdtilt makes group-funding easier than ever before,” Ryan continued.

To start a Crowdtilt campaign today and discover the best way to pool funds simply and socially, visit Crowdtilt.com.

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iControl Networks Acquires Piper, a Wi-Fi -enabled, Z-Wave Standard All-in-One Home Awareness and Security Management Solution

16 Apr

Piper, the Compact, All-in-One Home Awareness and Management Device Now Enables Live Interaction and Integrated Security Functionality for a Total Home View

By Robert Hoskins

Ottawa, Ontario – iControl Networks, a leader in connected home technology and innovation, announced the availability of two enhancements to the Piper all-in-one home awareness and management device: two-way audio and multi-Piper capability, which provides the ability to support more than one unit and create multiple security zones.

Piper, the Compact, All-in-One Home Awareness and Management Device Now Enables Live Interaction and Integrated Security Functionality for a Total Home View

Piper, the Compact, All-in-One Home Awareness and Management Device Now Enables Live Interaction and Integrated Security Functionality for a Total Home View

Piper, the compact, Wi-Fi-enabled, all-in-one home awareness and management device that launched general availability in North America in late January 2014 and was recently acquired by iControl Networks, enables users to seamlessly monitor what’s important in their life from their mobile device, all without service contracts or fees.

With multi-Piper capability, users will be able to create independent security zones using up to five Pipers within their homes. Each Piper operates as an independent sentinel and joins together to form an integrated security network. Seamless Z-Wave integration allows for complete home awareness and automation control. Shared environmental and motion sensor data, camera views and recorded videos provide the ability to track changes and movement through each zone.

Simple to use, two-way audio provides users with the ability to directly interact via Piper app’s camera view with occupants, elderly parents, children and even pets.

“The ability to simply and easily interact with and secure your entire home — not just one room — when you’re away has been a priority of ours since we first developed Piper,” said Russell Ure, creator of Piper and Executive Vice President and GM of iControl’s Canadian business unit. “We’re excited to offer an enhanced experience to our current and future customers.”

Piper has been recognized for its excellence in innovative design and engineering and originally debuted its crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo in August 2013, where it successfully tripled its funding efforts. Allowing users to easily monitor, secure and interact with their homes through Z-Wave home automation accessories, Piper continues to receive support and praise from homeowners, apartment renters, parents, pet owners and design enthusiasts alike.

Piper features include:

  • Security – Customize three security modes (home, away and vacation), motion detector and piercing, 105-decibel siren.
  • Automation – Integrate Z-Wave accessories into Piper’s security modes, control them remotely, on a schedule, or using environmental data.
  • HD Panoramic camera – 180° fisheye lens, electronic pan, tilt, and zoom, 1080p camera sensor.
  • Customized alerts – Phone call, text message, email and push notifications to alert users and their trusted circle when security rules are triggered.
  • Environmental sensors – Monitor and control home temperature, humidity, ambient light and sound.
  • Elegant design – Simple, intuitive app. Compact, two-toned form with brushed metal legs.
  • Smart hardware – ARM processor, battery backup, internal memory for video storage, 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi.
  • Free cloud storage – Cloud infrastructure provides Piper a place to store event videos, send various types of notifications and perform additional login/connection negotiation.
  • Android & iOS support – Available on Android and iOS smartphones and tablets.
  • NEW Two-way audio – Talk directly to occupants through Piper and app on mobile device.

Two-way audio and multi-Piper capability will be available as a free firmware and software update. The Piper House Kit, which comes with three units in either black or white, can be purchased at http://store.getpiper.com for $649 USD. Piper can also be purchased by itself for $239 or bundled with Z-Wave home automation accessories such as smart switches and door/window sensors that allow consumers to control their homes remotely, ranging from $359 to $849 USD.

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