Tech Topics

Ideas to help implement technology - just try ONE thing!

Volume 2 - December 17, 2015

Driving Digital Learning - Tech Truck

What is the Tech Truck? The Tech Truck comes to your school and offers assistance regarding technology. There are numerous applications that offer teachers help, but it can be overwhelming if you don't know what they all do. Come on the truck and we can offer guidance or assistance regarding anything technology related.

The Tech Truck has visited 12 schools already and has had over 250 visitors - AWL has topped everyone with 59 visitors! Many do not know what to expect with the truck, but leave with something that didn't expect. Here are what some of those visitors are saying about their time on the truck:

"Great idea - mobile PD for teachers"

"I wish I had more time to explore and learn during the tech truck visit. Looking forward to the next visit."

"I got immediate feedback, assistance, and direct problem solving actions that day!"

"This will be of great benefit for my students."

Starting in January, the Tech Truck will start making its' visits to elementary schools. No appointment is necessary, just come when you have a free moment within the day!

Click on the link to find out when we will be at your school:

CPS Teacher Focus

Heather Allentuck

Heather Allentuck is a middle school math teacher at Roselawn Condon. She is a second year teacher having graduated from Miami of Ohio in 2014. She is from Gaithersburg, Maryland, which is near DC. Currently she is working with Miami University on engaging students in real world and community based mathematic problems and situations.

Heather begins her class with a “Do now” activity to engage students as they enter her class. Then she teaches a mini-lesson, moving into blended learning stations. Heather embraces technology and uses it as a part of her daily routine. Students are engaged in Google classroom and Google apps daily. Additionally she enjoys using Reflex math, Think through math, Blendspace, Learn Zillion, Apex,, Socrative, Powtoon, and Padlet. Her students are always surprised with what she has in store for them next!

What's Happening Around Cincinnati Public Schools

Hour of Code

During the week of December 7-11, students around the world participated in the Hour of Code. This grassroots initiative was developed to introduce students to computer sciences. Over 180 countries participated in this event, where tens of millions of students spent one hour learning computer coding.

Several schools in our district took part in this exciting event. At Rockdale Academy, students were inspired by a video of President Obama and many well-known celebrities writing code. Although most kids had never heard of coding before, the introductory tutorial was easy to follow and understand.

Students enjoyed programming favorites, such as Star Wars, Frozen, Minecraft and Angry Birds. In one hour, 25 Rockdale fifth graders wrote 2,037 lines of code!

If you missed out on the event, don’t worry; the Hour of Code can take place anytime! Visit to get more information, resources, and directions for hosting an event.

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Get Started Somewhere - Tech Tools for the Classroom


Are you looking for rigorous and high quality digital resources to use in your mathematics classroom? Then the National Council of Mathematics Teachers (NCTM) Illuminations website is what you have been waiting for! Illuminations provides standards-based resources and materials that “illuminate” the vision of NCTM for school mathematics and improve the teaching and learning of mathematics for all students. Lessons and activities on the Illuminations website have been developed in alignment with NCTM’s Principles and Standards for School Mathematics and the Common Core State Standards of Mathematics.

You will find over 600 lesson plans, including assessments, enrichment activities, discussion questions, and more. In addition, there are supplementary lessons, digital resources, mobile apps, online puzzles and games, along with a community in which educators share success stories and how they incorporate the resources in their classrooms. The collection of virtual manipulatives comes with plans and ideas for incorporating them into lessons, and the Calculation Nation site offers challenging online games of strategy. The entire website is searchable by grade level and standard so you can always find exactly what you need. Check out this valuable resource today- you won’t be sorry!


Padlet is an live bulletin board tool for students, allowing the whole group to see items added immediately. Padlet allows all content, including images, videos, documents, attachment, and much more. It is a storage area for explanations or resources for your students, but also allows students to add items (if you allow them to). Students have the ability to use their "wall" for projects, end-of-year presentations or even portfolios; padlet can also be used for online group discussions.

Get started at


Internet4Classroom also known as ("i4c"), a free web portal designed to assist anyone who wants to find high-quality, free Internet resources to use in classroom instruction, develop project ideas, or reinforce specific subject needs for their students. These resources can be used for home or class; teachers, parents, and students have the option to use the resources to help them with common core standards practice, or even to build their skills on areas that have been covered during class.

This site is very user friendly for both the teachers and the students. There are online practice, assessments, interactive games, and online practice skills. The links to other sites have been useful with expanding the use of resources in classrooms; it's a great way to differentiate student instruction and can be used for individual students or small groups.

Need Help with Implementing Technology?

Demonstration Classrooms

Do you teach math to grades 2-6? Do you want to know how to use technology to deliver standards based lessons? Are you struggling to implement Engage New York?

Sign up to visit the Demonstration Classroom at Rockdale Academy. In this room, you will see best practices in a fifth grade math class. Students are highly engaged, and work collaboratively to solve problems and develop critical thinking skills.

Mrs. Jennifer Miller uses technology, such as Google Classroom, Nearpod and Blendspace, to teach math lessons. Students participate by watching interactive tutorials, practicing skills, and completing formative assessments.

Interested teachers can sign up through their instructional coach, principal, or by emailing Mrs. Miller directly at

For more information about the Demonstration Classrooms - please visit the website.

Ed Tech Tools Used at CPS

There are so many education technology tools out there - you are not alone, it can be overwhelming. There are a variety of tools used at Cincinnati Public Schools - subscriptions or free. Clicking on the link will take you to a list of favorite tools that some of our CPS teachers are using on a daily basis. You'll find explanations, links, and account information. Please note that these are just resources gathered in one place, the CPS help desk may not have all information about each of these applications as some are not CPS supported.

Ed Tech Tools List-Cincinnati Public Schools Favs

The list is updated on a regular basis - want to contribute to the list, email Megan Safko-Preslin at

User Guides

Ever wonder where to go for various user guides on CPS applications?

Visit the Google My Tomorrow site, go to Staffnet, click on the My Tomorrow link on the left-hand side. Once in the My Tomorrow site click on a specific section you are wanting more information, for example, technology and you'll find help guides for usage.

Blackboard also has user guides for CPS applications: login to your Blackboard account - find ITM District Training Resources.

The ITM Help Desk also provides user guides on their updated Google website.

What's Next?


LanSchool is currently available for all high schools, and is making its' way to the elementary schools in January. LanSchool allows teachers to better manage student tech usage within their classroom. Teachers can easily share their screen to their student's screen for ease of instruction, as well as sharing student screens to the class - what a great way to share presentations!

Be on the lookout for training dates coming to your school or you can check out the Mayerson website soon for an online class regarding LanSchool. LanSchool tutorials can be found on the My Tomorrow Google Site. Find that site by going to StaffNet>My Tomorrow> Technology

Opportunities to Learn More Tech in the Classroom

Mayerson Courses

Google Apps for Education Super Mini Camp

Thursday, Jan. 7th 2016 at 4:30pm

2650 Highland Avenue

Cincinnati, OH

Google Apps for Education is a web-based suite of programs provided by Google for schools to use.

Google Apps allows you to easily share documents and files with teachers and students, so you can turn in assignments electronically and collaborate on projects with co-workers and classmates.

Google Apps for Education is a powerful collaboration and communication tool available for all employees and students in grades 7-12. K-6 teachers may also request access for their classroom depending on availability of licenses.

Learn the basics of Google Apps for Education.

Blackboard Beginner: Basics

Thursday, Jan. 14th 2016 at 4:30pm

2650 Highland Avenue

Cincinnati, OH

Learn the basics of using Blackboard - all teachers have Blackboard accounts, while students 7-12 have accounts.

Co-Teaching Roundtables (1991.6452)

Wednesday, Jan. 13th 2016 at 4:15pm

2650 Highland Avenue

Cincinnati, OH

Opportunity to work with like-minded colleagues on developing skills and strategies needed to effectively co-teach in any subject area.

Integrating Technology into Elementary Roundtables (2003.6512)

Tuesday, Jan. 26th 2016 at 4:15pm

2650 Highland Avenue

Cincinnati, OH

Opportunity to work with colleagues on developing skills and strategies needed to effectively implement technology into elementary classrooms.

High School Technology Roundtables (1993.6456)

Tuesday, Jan. 26th 2016 at 4:15pm

2650 Highland Avenue

Cincinnati, OH

Opportunity to work with colleagues on developing skills and strategies needed to effectively implement technology into elementary classrooms.

Google Classroom

Thursday, Feb. 11th 2016 at 4:30pm

2650 Highland Avenue

Cincinnati, OH

This training course will offer teachers the opportunity to explore Google Classroom and create their own. You will learn about creating and sharing announcements and assignments and grading of assignments during this training. These tools offer students the ability to collaborate and communicate and give the teacher ways to provide digital and differentiated instruction. Using these tools students can continue to shape their 21st Century Skills.

Blackboard Intermediate: Interactive Tools for 7-12 Teachers

Thursday, Feb. 18th 2016 at 4:30pm

2650 Highland Avenue

Cincinnati, OH

You have an understanding of the Blackboard set up, time to gain some knowledge regarding Interactive Tools for your students. You will learn about Discussion boards, Blogs, Journals, and Wikis during this training. These four communication tools offer students the ability to self-reflect, collaborate, and communicate; These four tools give the teacher ways to provide digital and differentiated instruction. Using these tools students can continue to shape their 21st Century Skills.
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