CPP Technology Today
A Communication of the CPP Technology Committee - Vol 1.8
CPP Technology Today
Tuesday, May 10th, 8am
This is an online event.
- Instructional Technology in Action - "Creativity in Action: Making Movies with Kizoa" with Michael Clarke
- Resources Spotlight - What's New on the CPP Technology Website
- Google Apps at CPP: "Inside a Connected (or Google) Classroom: Using Google Docs to Create Truly Collaborative Small Group Activities - by Lori Pruyne
- Google Apps Resources: Sharing Google Docs
- Google Apps at CPP: Login Reminder
- District Technology News: BrightBytes CASE Analysis show Classroom Use of Technology
- District Technology News: How To Use Technology to Support Learning with The 4Cs
- Technology Master Plan Goals - Goal 7 Progress: Turnkey Trainers Embark on New Professional Development Initiative
- Newsletter Suggestions and Ideas
Instructional Technology in Action
Creativity in Action: Making Movies with Kizoa
with Michael Clarke
Kizoa is a movie-making program, that allows users to create their own movies through the use of images and original text.
Creating a movie through Kizoa is as simple as creating a slideshow, such as a Powerpoint presentation. The user gathers the images that he wishes to use, them uploads them into Kizoa. Using a simple drag-and-drop format, users then arrange the images in the order desired for the movie. Kizoa then allows the addition of original text, animation, special effects, engaging transitions between slides and music. The program then merges all of these elements together into fast-moving, engaging videos.
Fifth grades students at Smith used Kizoa in Michael Clarke's class to enrich their ELA reading curriculum. Students engaged in traditional ELA activites, researching the background and the history of the blues as a musical form. They learned about how the blues are written, and practiced writing and poetry skills by writing their own blues songs using 12 bar blues format.
Kizoa then allowed students to share their learning in a more creative and authentic manner than simply writing an essay or typing out the lyrics of their song. They found images to match their lyrics, and created "slides" within Kizoa by adding the lyrics of their songs to each individual image. They added authentic blues music to their presentation, syncing their lyrics and slides with the music.
"Project like these are highly motivating," Mike Clarke explains. [They] allow the kids to be creative."
The project is also arranged in such a way that students are able to think critically about their and their classmates' work, and to collaborate together on reviewing each others' work. Clarke says "Students also evaluate each other based on a rubric of the standards/criteria. They link their project to Google Classroom, so all students in the class can view the project, evaluate it, and give feedback."
Kizoa has any number of uses within any content area, as a means for students to share their learning, to collaborate together on presentations, to - as in Mr, Clarke's class - to share and analyze each other's work, and even for teachers to share content with students.
Feel the blues and get some inspiration with Mr. Clarke's fifth graders' Kizoa movies.
Ripped Shoe Blues
Nothing is worse the having the Ripped Shoe Blues.
The Flat Basketball Blues
You know it's going to be a long season when you have the Flat Basketball Blues.
The Skinned Knee Blues
Don't forget the greatest suffering of all - The Skinned Knee Blues.
What's New on the District Technology Webpage?
- Find tutorials and guides for using Kizoa, an interactive, web-based presentation tool (more guides coming soon)
- A new page has been added to the Teacher's Resource section. The 4Cs page contains descriptions of each of the 4Cs, and links to technology programs that support the skills needed in each area. More will be added to the page as we begin to examine the 4Cs more closely.
Technology at CPP is a new section of the website, that will allow access to important district-related technology documents. The page currently contains information on the Smart Schools Bond and on the Technology Master Plan Goals.
Other Important Resources:
Access the CPP Technology Newsletter - new issues and archives!
- Open presentations, handouts and resources from many of the technology-related
- Find information and tutorials on using Google Apps
- Access tips and tricks for teaching in a 1:1 environment
Google Apps at CPP
Inside a Connected (or Google) Classroom: Using Google Docs to Create Truly Collaborative Small Group Activities
This regular feature will explore experiences from CPP teachers and students with using various Google Apps for Education
One of the features of Google Docs that is striking from the time a users begins to experience is the collaborative nature of the program. Most of us are used to a format where, in order to share a created resource, the original author makes a copy and sends that copy to others (for example, a shared PowerPoint presentation). Those collaborators, in turn, save their own copies, make changes, and send it back. If I send 3 members of my department a copy of the unit test, within a short time there are five separate copies of that test - the one in my H drive, the one I emailed, and the three that they saved to their drives, and possibly sent back to me with changes.
We've all experienced the confusion that this can cause. In Google Docs, instead of sending the file to the users, the program brings the users to the file. The Google Docs unit test would be stored online in my Google Drive. I can give my department members access to just that file, through a specific link Drive creates for it. They can then access that single file and make their changes. The program also allows me to track and see changes and who made them, so I can see who made changes, when they were made, and can undo them if I want to.
The professional applications of this are apparent to anyone who has ever had a list of files with names like this:
- Unit Test v.1
- Unit Test My Edits
- Unit Test final
- Unit Test finalfinal
- Unit Test really final
- Unit Test more edits
- Unit Test NOMORECHANGESFORPETESSAKE
One area where the "Share" feature can really change the way "Business as Usual" is accomplished is group work. Instead of giving each group a separate paper to fill out, and asking them to stand up and share their work, the entire class can be given access to a single, shared Google Doc. Within that Doc can be a table with a row or column for each group (or even individual students). Projecting the shared Doc onto the SmartBoard while students work the teacher and every student can see each group's work as it grows. Collaboration is simple, as everyone has access to everyone else's work. Additionally, the document stays at that link, so students have access to that collaborative work indefinitely, so they can return to the document and use it as a study guide and learning tool.
Collaborative work activities that can be greatly enhanced through Google Docs include:
- collaborative definitions
- jigsaw activities
- text analysis
- WebQuest activities
- Round-robin questioning
- Research activities
Google Docs is inherently a collaborative way of working. Using it in the classroom as a tool for collaborative grouping allows technology to enhance and support many
different instructional goals.
Find resources on Google Docs and its' sharing capabilities below, with examples of how it can be used in the classroom for collaborative work.
Chrome is a web browser, meaning that, like Internet Explorer, it is the program via which a user is able to access the internet, and move from one site to another. Different browsers support, or allow users to access, different types of sites. Just like any other program, they have different features and strengths and weaknesses. When developers create websites and programs, they create them to utilize the features and strengths of a specific web-browser. Therefore, a program that works just fine on Google Chrome may not work at all on Internet Explorer.
Increasingly, problems that CPP teachers and students are having with websites and web-based are due to the fact that the sites were built to be accessed via Google Chrome, but users are trying to access them through Microsoft Explorer. If a program isn't working, try switching to Chrome.
Better yet, why not start out on Chrome? In future issues, we'll explore some of the advantages of using Google Chrome. Try it out, see what works well and what is challenging, and watch this space for more updates!
Use the link below to set Google Chrome as your default browser.
Google Apps Logins
This year, CPP has activated their Google Apps for Education domain. Through this domain, ALL teachers and students have Google Drive accounts, as well as access to many Google Apps for Education, including Google Classroom, Google Docs and many more.
To access your account:
- First, go to drive.google.com to log in to Google Drive. Drive is your starting point for all the Google Apps.
- Your username is whatever you use to login here at cpp +@cppasd.com (ie, firstname.lastname@example.org).
- Contact Lori Pruyne, Carrie Howe or Dave Mayotte for your password. Passwords are all preset, and you will be prompted to change it at your first login.
Students also have accounts. Their usernames are set up the same ways as teacher accounts, and their passwords explained in the tutorial below. Student Google Apps Login Tutorial on the CPP Technology Website.
There are extensive resources for using Google Apps for Education at the CPP Google Apps Hub on the district technology page. Resources include videos, tutorials, practice exercises and activities to use with students.
If you'd like some help accessing and using Apps, please contact Lori, Carrie or Dave!
Access the Google Docs section of the Google Apps page on the CPP Technology weebly. Information, resources and practice using Google Docs are included on the page.
Sharing a Google Doc
This tutorial (a shared Google Doc!) details the process of how to save and share a Google Doc.
Sharing a Google Doc
District Technology News
District Technology News: BrightBytes CASE Analysis show Classroom Use of Technology
In the last issue, we began to examine some of the findings from the BrightBytes survey, the tech survey administered to students, parents, teachers and administrators in January.
The look at the BrightBytes CASE model began with Access, and area where CPP was shown to be advanced.
The second area of analysis is Classroom, which examines how technologies and technology programs are utilized within individual classrooms to promote teaching and learning. In this area, we are Emerging. The 1:1 rollout is in process, a lot of new programs and equipment have been introduced, and teachers are investigating and learning ways to integrate those technologies into the classroom, a process that requires a lot of professional learning and support.
BrightBytes suggests two steps to support teachers in incorporating technology to support the learning curriculum. The first is to create a K-12 skills matrix, outlining technology literacy skills to be taught and practiced each year. CPP has already begun that process - the K-12 matrix was created with teacher input last year, and K-5 teachers have already begun planning collaborative units in order to embed those skills into their classrooms (see the April 12 issue of this newsletter for more information).
The second recommendation was to utilize the 4Cs as a framework for determining how - and why - to incorporate technology into the classroom. The 4Cs - Communication, Collaboration, Creativity and Critical Thinking - are higher order skills that help students to develop their ability to learn, analyze and create, making them stronger learners in all content areas. When teachers use the 4Cs to plan, it enables them to identify ways to give students more practice in these skills within the classroom, and helps them to choose technologies that can create learning activities that develop these skills in the process of attaining content knowledge.
A new page has been created on the CPP Technology website with some more information on the 4Cs. More will be coming - watch this spot in further issues for more information!
Discover more about the 4Cs on the new page on the CPP Technology Weebly - click the link below to access.
District Technology Updates
How To Use Technology to Support Learning with The 4Cs
Teaching through incorporating the 4Cs - Communication, Collaboration, Creativity and Critical Thinking - is not a process of adding more to the classroom. Rather, it is a process of changing how teaching and learning is accomplished, so that the focus is not on information covered by the teaching, but on students' uncovering learning. In terms of technology, using the 4Cs isn't about using technology to teach; rather, it's about letting students create and construct their own learning using technolog
Teachers are used to working hard to provide students with learning. When they incorporate the 4Cs, the burden of the work shifts to the student - the teacher provides the tools, questions to guide students' process, and help in uncovering and make sense of the learning. But the act of discovery,h synthesis and sharing is the responsibility of the student.
Technology is a means by which both teachers and students can accomplish the goals of 4Cs classrooms: letting students choose their learning path, plan the course that will help them access the learning, and take action to find, package and share their learning.
See examples of lessons that incorporate the 4Cs in different grade levels and across different content areas in the project from the National Educator's Association
Technology-Related Master Plan Goals: Goal 7 Progress - Turnkey Trainers Embark on New Professional Development Initiative
Goal 7 reads: "Professional Development: Provide necessary professional development (PD) for staff and students to ensure successful implementation of technology goal."
Objective 3 of that goal was: "To develop a plan to provide staff with a variety of PD offerings in varying formats."
Through conversation with teachers, evidence gathered through the BrightBytes and other surveys, and from feedback surrounding curriculum activities two things became apparent: many teachers are eager for professional development surrounding technology, and there are also many teachers who are highly skilled in different programs and practices, and who are excited to share their knowledge with their colleagues.
Therefore, one of the action items for the Technology Committee this year came to be to develop a program by which teachers can be trained to deliver professional development in different technologies to their colleagues.
This is an accepted method of professional development, which is frequently seen in instructional technology. Formally called the "Trainer of Trainers" model, this process:
- Identifies an area where professional development is needed
- Assembles a team who are willing to provide professional development
- Provides training to the team
- Establishes opportunities for team members to deliver training, assistance and encouragement to others.
The first group of Turnkey Trainers will be delving into the Google Apps suite, in order to be better able to provide support to teachers at their grade levels and within their buildings. Training for the first group of 19 begins this week, and different groups of Turnkey Trainers will begin forming for the 16-17 school year.
If you have an idea about a program or technology that should have a group of Turnkey Trainers to provide support, and/or if you would like to be a Turnkey Trainer in a particular technology, please contact Lori Pruyne with your ideas.
Share Your Learning
For more information about the newsletter, to make suggestions for content or to contribute, please contact Lori Pruyne, or any of the technology committee members below.