Time to vote for your favourites
More than 20 candidates have been shortlisted for the teaching resources section of this year's Education Resources Awards. The section is subdivided into special education, early years, primary, secondary and information and communications technology. You can also vote for supplier of the year with more than pound;1 million turnover.
Readers of The TES, Education Resources Management (whose publisher Nexus Media jointly organised the awards with the British Educational Suppliers Association) and visitors to the BESA website (www. besanet.org.uk) are entitled to vote. Your last chance is today.
The winners will be announced, along with those of other award categories, next Thursday (March 23) at a gala evening at the National Motorcycle Museum at Bickenhill, Solihull, next door to the NEC. The shortlist for the awards, sponsored by The TES, Sanford UK, GLS Dudley, Novara, Select Education and Staedtler (UK), was drawn up in January by a panel comprising seven heads and deputies - all members of the National Association of Headteachers - Chris Thatcher, president of the National Association of Headteachers, and Janette Wolf, then the TES resources and media editor. Eileen Devonshire, deputy chief executive of BESA, chaired the proceedings.
In the special education category, Wellington Square Level 3 and All About Number, both from the multimedia company Semerc and designed to develop reading and numeracy skills for slow learners, and Lego Soft, oversized and softer versions of Lego bricks, from Lego Dacta UK, are vying for top place.
The early years category includes Top Start, the Youth Sport Trust's scheme to encourage three to five-year-olds to learn through physical activity, using bags of equipment and resource cards. Semerc's All About Number and Lego Soft are listed again, and there is Ten Little Fingers by LDA, a book conaining 100 number rhymes to develop mathematical awareness in young children, which is also on the shortlist for the primary category.
Channel 4 Learning's The Number Crew, a range of video and print resources conveying the message that maths is fun, is another contender in the primary section, along with NES Arnold's Maths Big Board and Materials, which include a magnetic board, overlays, marker pens and number, symbol, picture and word cards. Oxford University Press's Oxford Reading Tree Games (Stages 4 and 5) and Tally Book by Hope Education, an A3 book with six flip-over sections teaching aspects of number and place value, complete the list.
On the secondary resources list is the Army Education Programme's Planning for Personal Safety - Education and Youth, produced with the Suzy Lamplugh Trust, which encourages debate on this serious issue; Equipe from Oxford University Press, which offers French without tears but with grammatical rigour; Times 100, from MBA Publishing, which is sent free to nearly 6,000 schools' business study departments and provides case studies of more than 50 leading organisations; and Climate Change - Education and Youth from BP Educational Service, a CD-rom focusing on geography, science and personal and social education for over-15s.
The latter is also listed for the ICT award. It is joined by Bolton Curriculum ICT Centre for its "teacher friendly" ICT in Primary Numeracy, a document for in-service training and daily classroom use from reception to Year 6.
Five companies are listed for the supplier of the year: Viglen, the supplier of IT solutions to universities and schools; Rickitt Educational Media (REM), distributor of educational software for schools and homes; Sico Europe, the education furniture manufacturer; Educational Support Services (ESS), a national specialist supply teacher service operating in 10 cities; and GLS Dudley, which supplies a variety of products from laboratories to libraries, mathematics equipment to mobile classrooms.