September 5, 2017

Share to Google Classroom


Keeping your students on the same page can be a tough task for any teachers. Luckily, tools like Google Classroom can do wonders for ensuring cohesiveness in the curriculum.  Did you know that you can push a website to all the students in your class and it will automatically pop up on their open device? 

The "Share to Classroom Extension" can be found in the Chrome Web Store.  All you need to do is click, "Add to Chrome."  This will put an icon next to your search bar.  When you find something you want to share, you simply click on the icon. 



Have you explored Google Chrome Extensions?  This is just one of hundreds that can help you be more productive. 



  1. Open the Chrome Web Store.
  2. Find and select the extension you want.
  3. Click Add to Chrome.
  4. For some extensions, you'll see a box that lists the data that the extension will be able to access.
  5. Click Add extension to grant the extension access to your data and install the extension.

IMPORTANT: You need to archive your classes from last year.  (If not, students will see your class from last year in their classroom.)
On the class card, click More More and then Archive



"Inspiring Minds Together"

August 20, 2017


Hello and Happy
2017-18 School Year!

This is going to be a great year!  

Here is my #1 suggestion for success.  Google Classroom!  If you do not have one, please contact me and we can get together to set yours up.  Honestly, it is a game changer!  


Flippity 

This summer I found a GREAT resource for you.  

Flippity! 

Flippity is a series of web apps that can easily turn a google sheet into 

  • Flashcards
  • Quiz Show
  • Bingo
  • Hangman
  • Spelling Words
  • Random Picker
  • Mix and Match
  • Badge Tracker
  • Progress Indicator
  • MadLibs
  • Certificate Quiz
Each tool has a link to a demo page, so you can see it in action, and a link to the step-by-step instructions for the tool. In addition, each tool also has a Google Sheets template that you can make a copy of and then fill in with your own information.

Flippity Add-On

This past November, the Flippity Add-on for Google Sheets became available. Now it is easier than ever to create games. With this add-on, even your students can create review games with Flippity.
To get the Flippity Add-On:
1. Open a new Google Sheet and click on the “Add-ons” menu.
2. Search for “Flippity” and click on the blue “Free” button to install the add-on.
3. Allow the add-on to connect to your Google account.
4. Go back to the Add-ons menu and click on Flippity–>Pick a Template.
5. After you select your template, your Google sheet is reformatted and you are ready to enter your data.
pick a template_border

Conclusion

Flippity can be a great learning tool for students. I think it is a powerful and fun way for them to review content at home, too. The fact that they can use the review games on their phones and/or tablets makes Flippity even more appealing. Turn your classroom into a game show by giving it a try or by having your students give it a try! It’s certainly a fun way to prepare your students.

Let me know if you need help!  I would love to help you make your classroom a fun place to learn! 

I am looking forward to learning with you this year! 

January 27, 2016

Google Forms + Flubaroo = Easy Peasy Formative Assessment


I hope you have discovered that Google Forms with the Flubaroo Add-On is the ticket to more time to plan instruction and less time spending grading! The results will be inserted on a new sheet on your form and results can be e-mailed to students.


It's simple, fast, and FREE! Need some help? Check out the Flubaroo website at http://www.flubaroo.com/

Here are a few quick steps:

1.  Create the quiz using Google Forms.  Add three questions at the beginning of the survey: first name, last name, and e-mail address. 
2.  As a teacher, take the quiz. Your results will be the answer key.
3.  Go back in to Google Spreadsheets. 
4.  Click on Add-Ons and search for Flubaroo.
5.  Click on the Add-Ons tab and you will now see Flubaroo.

6. Click on Add-On --> Flubaroo > Grade Assignment. 
7.  Answer the on screen prompts.
8.  Your quiz is now graded.  The results are on a new sheet ready for you to view and even e-mail to students!

I would love to meet with you and walk you through the process. Just let me know a good time and I will be there!


December 30, 2015

A Quick and Easy Review to Progress Book's Data Map

Progress Book DataMap

Overview

DataMap is a student analytics tool that collects, aggregates, and displays trending and historical assessment result data for the following types of assessments:
state standardized assessments – OAA and OGT • other state assessments – OTELA, KRA-L, etc.
third-party assessments – created by outside assessment providers (DIBELS, ACT, SAT, STAR)
You can search for and display this data in various formats to help you analyze the information and identify trends and specific areas in which students may need additional instruction.

Access  DataMap Through Progress Book

Student Roadmap DataMap’s Student Roadmap gives you an overview of a single student’s information and lets you drill down on any section to view more details. On this screen, you can view a student’s demographic information, interventions, current school year summary, and historical test scores.


To access a Student Roadmap, click on the arrow to the left of their name on your progress book home page.
To view a student’s home address location on Google Maps, click to  located in the Demographics section.
You can view the student’s total days absent for each school year in the Attendance section.
You can view the student’s State Assessment  Historical Information in the State Assessment Historical section.

Select the subject for which to view the student’s assessment scores.

You can view the students STAR reading and STAR math scores in the Data Points History Tab





November 6, 2015

Todays Meet: Use It In Your Classroom Tomorrow

We have talked about Today's Meet before.  If you need a  refresher, click here. Let's talk about some new and refreshing ideas you can use it in your classroom tomorrow.

1. Have a conversation. Students can talk about anything in a TodaysMeet room, and often you’ll draw out the shyest, quietest students — the ones who would never raise their hand in class discussion.
2. Share links. Post the URL for a website you want everyone to visit. Links you post are clickable in TodaysMeet.
3. Ask questions. During a lecture, presentation or movie, if students are unclear about something, they can ask questions and get answers without interrupting.
4. Give examples. Looking for students to show how something relates to their life? Or how they would apply a new concept? Participation is immediate and much faster than raising hands to answer.
5. Take a poll. Ask for a vote among a couple choices and the results will be visually obvious in a matter of seconds.
6. Check for understanding. Ask a comprehension question and have students type the answer WITHOUT clicking “Say” (the button you use to submit your answer to the room). Then, if they all click “Say” on the count of three, you’ll see who understands and who doesn’t.
7. Gather feedback. Did your presentation make sense? Do students like changes to the school? What is really working in class? What would they like to see more of?
8. Gather anonymous feedback. If you want participants to be REALLY honest, ask them not to type their names (maybe just a letter or character, or the same thing for everyone) when they answer.
9. Create “rotating stories.” Create a TodaysMeet room with a story starter. Have each student add a new sentence to the story. (Or, have every student create a TodaysMeet room and start their own story … then have each student visit every other student’s room to add a sentence.) See where the story goes.
10. Discuss an event. The State of the Union speech. A movie relevant to class. A presentation in the auditorium. Host a behind-the-scenes quiet discussion.
11. Hold online office hours. Tell students you’ll be available at a TodaysMeet room at a certain time to answer questions.
12. Crowdsource details. When my Spanish classes and I make up stories in Spanish, I like to ask them for details to add — a character’s name, where the character goes, what a character does next. I can get suggestions from everyone in about 15 seconds (or less!).
13. Connect with other classrooms. Extend a discussion beyond the four walls of your classroom. Invite a class from down the hall, in another city, in a different country.
14. Connect with experts. Find an expert in the subject your class is discussing and see if he/she will engage with your students in a TodaysMeet room. You can have a guest speaker without the hassle of travel.
15. Host a contest. The first person who correctly posts in the TodaysMeet room wins!
16. Teach brevity. Students can easily get too verbose and use unnecessary words. Expressing thoughts in 140 characters is an exercise in simplicity.
17. Practice digital citizenship. TodaysMeet rooms are online spaces for discussion much like many social media sites. They are a safe place to post and then talk about the do’s and don’ts about engaging online.
18. Facilitate group projects. Students can post links to useful articles, relevant information and ideas they want to include in a group TodaysMeet room.
19. Create a club/team communications site. Post meeting cancelations and changes. Connect with parents. Save yourself tons of phone calls or text messages if everyone checks the group TodaysMeet site.
20. Have asynchronous staff/committee meetings. Host a discussion where participants can discuss when it’s convenient for them. Let everyone pop into a TodaysMeet room throughout the day (or week) and wrap up the meeting at a predetermined time.
Which of these ideas sounds the most useful? What other ideas would you add to the list? Share them in a comment below!
Resource:
Ditch That Textbook,. (2014).  TodaysMeet in schools. Retrieved 6 November 2015, from http://ditchthattextbook.com/2014/01/30/20-useful-ways-to-use-todaysmeet-in-schools/

November 4, 2015

Google Add-Ons

Have you taken the time to explore Google Add-Ons?
These tools are built by third-party developers for Google Docs, Sheets, and Forms can be really helpful for you and your students. (YES! Have your student add them!)  Once add-ons are installed, you can manage each one individually, and turn them on and off at any time.


Google Add-ons are easy to find.  From any Google Doc, Sheet, or Form, just click "Ad -Ons" found at the top of the page. Click here for instructions.

Here are a few of my favorites:

Google Docs Add-ons:
The Tag Cloud Generator Add-on will create a word cloud in the right-hand margin of any of your Google Documents that contain more than one hundred words.

One of the most useful Add-ons for Google Documents is the EasyBib Bibliography Creator. The EasyBib Bibliography Creator makes it easy to properly cite resources and format a bibliography in APA, MLA, or Chicago style.

Knowing the right keyboard shortcuts to type the accents and characters is one of the challenges that students face when learning and trying to type in a new language. Easy Accents is a Google Docs Add-on that can eliminate that challenge. Easy Accents provides a virtual keyboard that enables students to quickly insert the letters and accents found in French, German, Spanish, Māori, and Sámi.

g(Math) is an Add-on for Google Docs that enables you to easily insert graphs and equations into your Google Documents. The Add-on opens in the right side of your document and from there you can insert the parameters of your graph and or generate equations.

Google Sheets Add-ons
Save As Doc is a free Google Spreadsheets Add-on that enables you to select a series of adjacent cells and turn them into an easy to read Google Document. The Save As Doc Add-on takes just a minute to install. Once installed select the Add-on from your "Add-on's" drop-down menu and click "start." After clicking "start" you can choose a set of cells or all cells to be converted into a Google Document. The document will appear in your Google Drive dashboard (it might take a minute or two to appear if you have selected a large set of cells) where you can then view it, edit it, or download it as a PDF.

Flubaroo is a popular Google Sheets Add-on that enables teachers to grade all at once all of their students' responses to a quiz created in Google Forms. Flubaroo offers automatic grading and emailing of grades. The autograde option in Flubaroo allows you to have students automatically receive their scores after submitting their responses to a quiz you created in Google Forms. The autograde feature will send students an email with their scores and the answer key (you can exclude the answer key). With autograding enabled students do not have to wait for you to run the grading process or wait for you to send emails.

Google Forms Add-ons:
FormLimiter is one of my favorite Forms Add-ons. FormLimiter allows you to set a time for a form to automatically stop accepting responses. You can also use FormLimiter to set a limit on number of responses a form will accept.

g(Math) is a also available as a Google Forms Add-on that allows you to insert graphs and mathematical expressions into your Google Forms. To insert graphs and equations into your Form select g(Math) from your Add-ons menu and follow the directions that pop-up on the right side of the screen.

Form Notifications allows you to create triggers for emails to be sent to you when submissions are made through one of your forms. You can set the Add-on to send you an email alert after a specified number of responses are received or after every submission. The Add-on also allows you to have an email sent to Form respondents after they have completed your Form.


Believe me...this is just the tippy-top of the iceberg.  I can't wait to see what you can find.

September 10, 2015

Zulama and Meet our New "Learning Commons" Specialist

Have you heard about the "Zulama" room?  High School Teacher Rachael Fryman has taken this project on with gusto. Zulama is the new high school course that offers project-based learning while students develop portfolios and skills they need to be successful in today’s global workforce. What skills you ask? We are using something students love, video games, to "hook" them.  They are developing problem-solving and thinking creatively skills they need to earn jobs in a digital world.It’s the perfect blend of technology and creativity, and it’s what employers are looking for.

So, there is good news and bad news and good news. Stay with me. 


Good News!

I am excited to tell you that Rachael Fryman has agreed to take the position of the Edgewood District "Learning Commons" Specialist.  I know this is a new term for us. However, it is a great phrase to add our vocabulary. A Learning Commons is a full-service learning, research, and project space. The library of the 21st century!

Rachael is BEYOND ECSTATIC! Anyone who knows Rachael knows that this has been her dream job since her Mom and Dad took her to the public library when she was a child. She has so many fabulous ideas to transform our High School media center into a 21st Century Learning Commons. 
She will be designing and maintaining a place that will encourage exploration, creation, and collaboration between students, teachers, and possibly the community.

BAD NEWS!

Rachael will be stepping away from the Zulama Classroom.

GOOD NEWS!

Kris Korty has agreed to take over the Zulama Classroom. We were a little worried about who could fill the shoes of Rachael, and then Kris stepped forward. Kris will be GREAT. His tech skills are high, and growing every day. I have to study nightly just to keep up with him.


Good Luck Rachael! 

Good Luck Kris!


I promise to keep you all posted on what is going on with these projects over the year!