SEWARD INCORPORATED AWARDED TWO INNOVATION RESEARCH GRANTS
Seward Incorporated has been awarded two Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grants to develop media-rich, learning software for elementary and middle school students. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Office of Technology administers the SBIR Program to ensure that the nation’s small, high-tech, innovative businesses are a significant part of the federal government’s research and development efforts.
Seward will use one of the grants to develop the Individualized Language Development project. The Seward team will produce media-rich, individualized, age-appropriate, language instruction software for elementary students. The software will help English Language Learners (ELLs) and other language-delayed students develop the language skills they need to succeed. To develop the software, the Seward team will use the latest research findings in language development, instructional design, advances in web-based instruction, and sophisticated automated speech recognition technology.
Seward will use the second grant to develop the Model Eliciting Activities in Middle Grades project to support teachers and enhance student learning through technology. The Seward team’s goal is to increase middle school studentsâ€™ achievement in mathematics, specifically problem solving. The Seward team will develop and field test a 3-D virtual learning environment in which teams of students will interact, gather data, and engage in problem solving activities together. The 3-D virtual world supports traditional mathematics instruction designed following the Model Eliciting Activities format.
Seward is currently developing and testing The First 4,000 Words Project aimed at students in grades 1-4 with an SBIR grant. The web-based multimedia system employs automated speech recognition features for teaching the meanings and practicing the pronunciation of the 4,000 most frequently used English words seen and heard by these students. The target populations are English Language Learners, struggling readers, and children of poverty who have small vocabularies relative to their peers.