Lakeshore Equipment Company aims to make learning fun. Through
about 55 Lakeshore Learning Stores in two dozen states, the company
sells educational toys and classroom tools, including art supplies,
games, learning kits, textbooks, and teacher resource packets. It
also offers products that address multicultural learning
environments and special needs children, as well as in-store
teacher workshops. In addition to its store network, Lakeshore
markets learning materials via its mail-order catalogs and website.
Ethelyn Kaplan founded the company in 1954. Today it is run by her
son Michael (chairman) and grandsons Bo (president and CEO) and
Josh (VP of Merchandising).
The company also operates just about five outlet
warehouses in California and Maryland.
Lakeshore has placed greater emphasis on technology in education
in recent years. To this end, the company launched a suite of
50 educational software titles for children in early
2011. The software features interactive lessons and
activities on core school subjects, including math,
science, and language arts. Targeted to both teachers and parents,
the software can be used on interactive whiteboards in classrooms
as well as on computers at home.