Digital Learning News 4-12-16

from the Birdville Digital Learning Team

Election Discussions with Students

It is difficult to interact on social media without seeing the latest tweets or comments from the presidential candidates. With the heightened ability of candidates to promote themselves digitally, the digital natives that we teach are being exposed to the election everywhere they go. Even if you do not have strong opinions about the candidates (is that possible?), the election is a timely and relevant way to engage students in many current event topics, not just the workings of American Government. As you navigate the election with different age groups, consider the following resources for teachers.

EduTopia article Election 2016: Lesson Plans and Digital Resources for Teachers

Student News Daily


Scholastic election resources


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Five Keys to Rigorous Project-Based Learning
Project-based learning

Digital Learning Twitter Chat- TONIGHT from 8:00 - 8:30pm

The last two weeks, we have discussed ways to foster creativity in the classroom and why it is so important. Now, let's think about project-based learning and how it can promote creativity in classrooms.

Just search #bisddlp on Twitter beginning at 8:00pm this evening to view and participate in tonight's Digital Learning Chat.

Here are tonight's questions:

Q1: Think about an objective for the last 6-weeks. What would you need to do to make it into a PBL opportunity?

Q2: What resources do you need to successfully implement PBL?

Q3: What 3 words describe the perfect PBL project in your opinion?

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When Time is of the Essence...

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Digital Learning Blog Teacher Spotlights

BISD students are engaged in a variety of learning opportunities each day. Visit the Digital Learning Lounge blog to learn more about how teachers are using technology tools and resources that engage students in learning!

Haltom MS: Amber Norris, QR codes

North Richland MS: Frannie Hutson and Gina Bergman, Google Classroom

North Oaks MS: Trevor Seaman, Kahoot/Quizizz/Quizlet

ACFT: Stefanie Woodard, Bond tech for research

Watauga MS: Jim Adams, Explain Everything and Reflector2

Watauga MS: Julie Pollard, Topographical Augmented Reality Sandbox

Watauga MS: Heather Raynsford, Yak-It Kids on iPads

Watauga MS: Elizabeth Cumbie, Quizizz for assessment

Watauga MS: Angel Cox & Colleen Zitzman, Adobe Voice on iPads

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Click Here to Register for Summer Digital Learning!

This links to the Professional Learning page for summer PD opportunities! Check out the descriptions and register now!

Grow Your Mind: Learning Opportunities for YOU!

Now's the Time to Get Your Project Innovate iPad!

If you haven't received your Project Innovate iPad yet, now is your opportunity! Login to Eduphoria! and sign up now for an afternoon when you can attend training to receive your iPad. There are seven new sessions that begin at 4:00 or 4:30 PM in the coming weeks.

Approximately one week prior to training you will receive an email with a flipped learning experience that gives you prior learning and tasks that will be required before training.

Relay Learning Modules!

Looking for some self-paced professional learning about blended learning? Check out the learning modules at learn.relay. Educators can view videos and content related to best practices in innovative educational practices.

Upcoming and Summer Professional Learning Events at ESC11

Just go here to see the VERY COOL things planned!
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Resources for Learning

Elementary Tip of the Week: SpeakIt Chrome Extension

The Google Chrome browser has a wonderful extension that will allow readers to hear the text they are trying to read on a web page, SpeakIt.

Elementary App of the Week: iSpeech

iSpeech allows users to convert text to speech, convert documents to speech, convert web content to speech, or convert blogs to speech.

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Student Technology Tool of the Week: Rattle!

Rattle is a site with poems that are written about topics by contemporary poets. At the end of the poem, the poet has a brief description of the how and why of the writing of the poem. Students can search the poems by topics of interest to choose one that "speaks" to them.

Teacher Technology Tool of the Week: Thoughtful Learning!

Thoughtful Learning has many resources and lessons for teachers to use to get students writing. Minilessons, writing prompts, and other resources are available on this site.
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Quizlet Ups the Ante: Popular Online Vocab Site Debuts New Live Game Option!

Quizlet is a popular tool for teachers to provide students with simple ways to learn, review, play, and assess learning of vocabulary words. Images can also be added, and text-to-speech is another popular feature. Students can also download the app on their phones for on-the-go studying. Recently, Quizlet released another function on their site that "gamifies" the already built vocabulary lists. The live gaming option randomly groups students and has them play in groups with sets of a dozen words at a time.

Check out the new features here.

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Kelli Montgomery @KelliM11, Director of Digital Learning

Cheryl McKnight @cherylmck, Coordinator of Digital Learning

Karen Teeters @karenteeters222, Online Learning Specialist

Jennifer Miller @steamlearnlab, Learning Resources Specialist


Jennifer Canizares @jcanny72

Birdville, WT Francisco, Binion, Mullendore, Snow Heights, Porter, Spicer

Toni Hylander @technologytoni

Smithfield, Cheney, Stowe, Watauga, Foster Village, North Ridge, Walker Creek

Jeff Samuelson @jeff_samuelson

David E Smith, Richland, West Birdville, Holiday Heights, Hardeman, ACFT, Green Valley


Michael Hanson @Hansonits

Haltom HS, Haltom MS, Richland MS, North Ridge MS

Rashel Larson @rashellarson

Birdville HS, BCTAL, Smithfield MS, North Richland MS

Tosh McGaughy @ToshMcGaughy

Richland HS, Shannon HS, North Oaks MS, Watauga MS

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