Thursday, January 28, 2016

Tundra Toolslam 2016

Last night at the Tundra Toolslam, I presented Flipboard to about 80 people at the Neville Museum.  Ten innovative educators, five minutes each, one tool at a time!

View the presentation
View all the tweets

Find one tool and stick with it!

Friday, January 22, 2016

PLN Under 2000

Everyone knows the famous people in the educational Twitterverse!  Those voices that have ten-thousand, twenty-thousand, even fifty-thousand followers.  However, there are plenty of educators on Twitter that have less than 2,000 followers that have amazing insight into educational practices.

This reminds me so much of our classrooms.  There are always one, two, or possibly three students that speak all the time.  They may or may not have good insight, but they definitely take most of the energy from the room.  Leaders are needed, but their are many quiet voices in the room (and on Twitter) that have loud thoughts that can change the world.

I encourage you to find a few teachers and educational voices on Twitter that may not have thousands of followers and see what they have to say.  They may just inspire you to create the next great thing!

May I introduce you to @RMWynkoop@JulietDPark, and @mh_coach.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

3 Digital Artifacts Every Graduate Should Have Before Leaving High School

As we progress through our Flex Mod homeroom, we have a Universal Learning topic every Thursday.  This Thursday, we are presenting students with "3 Digital Artifacts Every Graduate Should Have Before Leaving High School".  I incorporated an iRig Mic, iPad, and iPad stand to record the "guest speakers".

Appreciate George Couros for some direction.

Monday, January 18, 2016

Global Issues: Flipboard for Current Events Finalized With a TED Talk

Our Global Issues class with Mrs. Schartner began a journey at the beginning of the year to learn more about current events.  Mrs. Schartner and I discussed the power of current events using the iPad and decided to utilize Flipboard.

Throughout the semester students discovered issues through articles and reflected on them.  The iPad and the Flipboard app was an amazing tool to engage students with global issues that they may not otherwise be interested in.  I personally use Flipboard for gathering technology news related to education and have created three of my favorite magazines.  

Students also watched numerous TED Talks on Global Issues throughout the semester similar to the one below. 

Fast forward to the end of the semester and students combined two global issues articles they found through the Flipboard app and created their own personal TED Talk.  

On Stage. In Front of Peers.  TED Talk.  Our Students.  Watch Some of Them.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Transition: Microsoft To Google

2009 was the first year that Google and all of it's products was piloted in our district.  Since then, collaboration, creativity, and sharing has occurred thousands of times among Pulaski Community School District employees.

Starting in March 2016, All Microsoft products will be unavailable for teacher use.  

Specific questions have been asked with our Director of Informational Technology answering them:

Per email from Mr. Fraedrich on Friday, January 15:
Q.  Why March 25th and what is happening on that date?  What do I need to do before March 25th?  
     A.  Our goal is to have Microsoft Office removed from staff computers that aren't keeping it by the start of next school year (September 1st, 2016).  The reason we picked March 25th is that it is the first day of Spring Break and it gives us a chance to get a start on the removal process.  We will be starting the process on March 25th, however it doesn't mean that during spring break it will be removed from all computers.  With some staff teaching Summer School and staff taking their laptops home frequently it gives the Technology Department plenty of time to complete the process by September 1st.  We will have a better idea of the timing of the removal and will communicate that schedule as we get closer to March.  Before Spring Break we ask that you start looking through files on your U: Drive to determine what you want to convert and what you want to leave in Microsoft Office format on your U: Drive or upload to Google Drive for storage.  We ask that you try to do this before March 25th so that you can be sure you have access to Microsoft Office to help in that process.

Q Can I use my classroom or department budget to purchase Microsoft Office?
     A.  The transition from Microsoft Office is primarily a budgetary decision, but it is also to encourage collaboration with staff and students, utilize free unlimited Google Drive cloud storage, and take advantage of the access from anywhere that Google Apps for Education provides.  For these reasons and in fairness to all staff in the district we are discouraging the individual or department purchase of Microsoft Office licensing.

Q.   Are the files in my U: Drive going away if I don't convert them?
     A.  Nothing is happening to any files in anyone's U: Drive.  Microsoft Office files that aren't converted and/or uploaded will remain, you will just no longer have Microsoft Office installed on your computer to open and edit them.  All other files (videos, pictures, PDFs, Etc.) will remain in your U: Drive.  We encourage you to use this opportunity to do some file cleanup to help identify what files you want to convert and upload, what files you can delete, and what files you might want to upload without converting to store in Google Drive.     

Q.  Can I request to be on the list to keep Microsoft Office installed on my computer?
     A.  We are currently conducting meetings with departments or content areas to determine Microsoft Office needs and working with staff to determine alternatives or making decisions on retaining the software.  See question below for more information.  

Q.  Who do I contact to get help with Google Apps or for help finding alternative programs to accomplish tasks I performed in Microsoft Office?
     A.  Your building LMS can assist with helping you accomplish what you need in Google Apps or find an alternative.  They will try to help you with your question and if need be reach out to the Technology Department for assistance.  We are also conducting Google Apps basic training sessions with building staff over the next couple weeks.  Elementary training sessions will be during the January 22nd inservice.  High School and Middle School staff training opportunities will take place in the next couple weeks as well.  There will be time for questions during the training.  There will also be Apple Core training classes focused on utilizing Google Apps for Education to its fullest potential.

On Tuesday, January 19, at 7:10 AM, Mods 7-10, and 3:10 PM, Adam Juelich and I will show a few steps that will make the transition efficient.  The entire presentation is below.  We will be answering questions and giving further details about the presentation.

Friday, January 15, 2016

Blessed By The Day - St. Paul Lutheran

I was blessed by the teachers and principal of St. Paul Lutheran School by their energy and enthusiasm to learn something new.  We worked to understand Google Forms, uses for them in a K-8 educational setting, and creating two Google Forms that could be used immediately.  Today it was all about Mission First, People Always! #M1PA

Friday, January 8, 2016

Converting Microsoft To Google - Tech Coaching

I spent some time with Jessica Moseng, physical education and health teacher, discussing the workflow to convert Microsoft to Google.  I get it, not every Word Document or Powerpoint will convert perfectly.  However, Mrs. Moseng discovered that it was an easy process.

5:13 AM Tech Integrator - Why I Arrive At School Early

Last night, I learned a valuable lesson from Mark Cuban on "Beyond the Tank". First and foremost, Mark is very smart.  If I EVER had the chance to pitch a product on "Shark Tank" and Mark Cuban offered me a deal, it would take a Google Search (less than 0.23431 seconds) for me to accept his offer.

I would love to work with him.

Mark was helping the creator of "Simple Sugars" and talked about listicles.
Please watch the direct conversation. (Not viewable on iPad)

I immediately thought about how I could help people to understand the life of a Technology Integrator.  I also thought about how many parents ONLY know educators through grades their  son/daughter earns in respectable classes and what their students verbally bring home after a long day at school.  As a parent of teenagers, I know that many important pieces of information can get "lost in translation".

Listicles can give an insight into the items that make people real.  Real people are viewed as people. Real people make relationships and relationships are the key to everything.  Building a relationship with people can break down barriers that can cause differences. Putting all people respectfully on the same page. 

With that, my first listicle.
My reason for coming to school early!

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Quick Current Event Searches Using Twitter and Google News

A response to a teacher who is seeking a quick, efficient way for students to discover current environmental issues.

The Response

If you want an easy and CURRENT way to find resources on Environmental Issues WITHOUT creating log in information you have two options.

First, the 15 Environmental Problems resource will help to start researching correct topics.  Using these words will guide the students.

Second, students travel to Twitter Search - you can put this link in Canvas.  Students will type in their topic and great and informational things will show up.  When I searched Twitter for Global Warming I found this

Third, have students use and again have students use the "search words" found in the first link I gave you.

Searching Ocean Acidification revealed this for me.


All of this can be accessed by students using the Safari App.

Saturday, January 2, 2016

PechaKucha Created With Explain Everything On the iPad For Sociology Final Assessment

*My PechaKucha example at end of post.

In spending more time in our high school Sociology class with Mrs. Krause, we have experienced a few "Show What You Know" learning opportunities with the iPad as the technology tool of choice.  We've already used  Popplet as a tool on the iPad to "Check For Understanding".

As we approach the traditional "final exam" period which comes at the end of Semester 1, we will not be conducting the multiple choice, true/false, essay exam.  Instead, students will be analyzing all of the content they discovered over one semester and apply that to their life.  We are focusing on taking one or two concepts that spoke to the students. Students will then take these concepts and demonstrate how it has impacted their life.

To do this we are incorporating a "presentation" method of PechaKucha.  Truthfully, until TIES 2015 and Ben Friesen's introduction, I had not heard of this presentation method.  Discover the history behind PechKucha or see one of many examples.

Of course, readers of iPaddiction know we are focused on creation and workflow utilizing iPads. In other words, how are we going to create a PechaKucha on the iPad?

Explain Everything is going to be our tool of choice.  Placing one image or a collage of images on a stage while recording is easy. Since we are modifying the PechaKucha format slightly (using 10 slides x 20 seconds each vs. 20 slides x 20 seconds each) Explain Everything's visible clock while recording is SO helpful.  Students will record each slide for 20 seconds.
Their thoughts. 20 Seconds. Don't Go Over!

Also, if students error while recording one slide, the entire presentation is not ruined.  Students simply rerecord the slide that is incorrect.
Another awesome feature to Explain Everything is the feature of easy access, viewing, copying, and moving of each stage (slide).  Ten slides are needed.  Since we have used Explain Everything before, it will be very easy for students to create and arrange the slides according to their needs.
Once students create, arrange, and record each slide to their liking, students will export the video to the camera roll.  Students will then "submit" this video as their assessment to Canvas which is our Learning Managment System.  Students will view each other's creations.  While students are watching presentations, students will be engaged in a discussion utilizing Canvas' Discussion option.  We provided them with a rubric and guidance.

My PechaKucha example to the students is below.  

  • Have students create each slide with silence and have students speak in front of the class while their "silent movie" is running on the screen.
Creating a PechaKucha utilizing Explain Everything was extremely simple and effective.  I'll post more about the process and student examples as the students complete the learning opportunity.
Images from our "recording day" are HERE.

  • Students in our Spanish II class are utilizing the PechaKucha speaking option.  Due to the "second language" concept, students are being given the "leveling up" option.  This option gives an "exceeds expectations" status to the presentation if note cards are not used.  If note cards are used, a "meets expectations" status is given.  We feel that with the added element of speaking in a second language students should have the opportunity to have note cards.  It is our hope, however, that they will be used sparingly.

I am so impressed with our students and the presentations they have conducted.  The fact that the "slides" kept moving motivated the students to talk to the audience as opposed to reading cards.  Students also needed to "think on their feet" if they finished early on a particular slide or "fill in" if they finished early.  There was also REAL connection from concepts in Sociology to their life.

That's what we want!

Students applying knowledge gained to life experiences.  The PechaKucha format really provided a great medium for students to "Show What They Know".

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