Digital Learning News 3-29-16

from your Digital Learning Team

Principal Spotlight: AP George Garcia at David E. Smith ES!

George Garcia, Assistant Principal at David E Smith Elementary, has really embraced Google Classroom this year. He began the year by setting up a Classroom that housed recordings of the morning announcements. This allowed teachers to show the announcements at a time favorable to them during the morning. Garcia then took it a step further and created a Google Classroom for campus professional learning. In this online learning space, he shares PL documents and articles, links to Google Docs with student data/classroom observations, and poses questions for staff feedback and reflection.

Mr. Garcia, campus principal Jessica Sandoval, and the David E. Smith Leaders of Learners team also plans to post video clips that exemplify great examples of Tier 1 priorities in teaching and learning. The campus recently purchased three Swivls that will be used to record classroom instruction. The videos will not only allow teachers to evaluate their personal instruction practices, but also be utilized to coach staff members at each grade level. Awesome use of Google Classoom from an administrative perspective, Mr. Garcia!

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Click Here to Access Google Classroom Resources!

how-to videos and teacher resources for using Google Classroom

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

Let's Lighten up and Share Some Memes!

Standardized testing occurred today for many teachers and students in our district. Search for your favorite testing and education-related memes or motivational quotes to share with everyone tonight during your introduction to the chat. After that, we will delve deeper into the topic of the importance of creativity skills in the classroom.

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

Sir Ken Robinson - Can Creativity Be Taught?

Here are tonight's questions:

Introduce your self and share your favorite appropriate testing-related meme.

Q1: What are your favorite digital tools to encourage students' creativity?

Q2: How can creativity support personalized learning for both teachers and students?

Q3: How can leaders support teachers/students in fostering an environment that encourages creativity?

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National Poetry Month!

April brings lots of state testing, Shakespeare's birthday, and NATIONAL POETRY MONTH! There are numerous resources available for teachers of all content areas and ages. Here are just a few to get you started.

Want to participate in the fun? Try NaPoWriMo (National Poetry Writing Month- 30 poems in 30 days with support and sharing on their site.)

Blog: 4 Reasons to Start Class With a Poem Each Day

Click here to read a post from a 9th grade English teacher who starts class daily with a poem.

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!

North Oaks MS: Jeremy Nungesser, on-line learning for CTE

ACFT: Robin Xavonglianekham, Chatterpix and QR codes

North Oaks MS: Karen Bland, on-line learning

Watauga MS: Esmeralda Elhamad, digital photography

North Ridge MS: Brooke Sorrells, Compass Learning incentives

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McGraw Hill Education Blog

Click here to go to an informative and relevant blog by blended ELAR teacher and author, Catlin Tucker. Her video and blog resources are perfect for teachers embarking on the blended learning transition.

Entrepreneurship: A Mindset, Not a Business Model

Click here to read a Forbes article titled, "We Are All Entrepreneurs: It's a Mindset, Not a Business Model" by Donna de Carolis.
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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.

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Resources for Learning

Elementary Tip of the Week: Movenote- Google Chrome Extension

Movenote is a Chrome extension that will record video alongside a presentation. With Movenote, you can create a picture-in-picture screencast with you and files from your Google Drive. If you have a lesson you uploaded to your drive or have a lesson you created with Google Slides, it is easy to add video and audio to that lesson with Movenote. Students can then watch you while also seeing the lesson you are teaching.

Elementary App of the Week: Movenote

Movenote is a video presentation tool. Recording presentations is easy and quick and they can be viewed on any device. Presentations can be shared by sending a link to the recipient and can be viewed without the app.
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Teacher Technology Tool of the Week: Perfect365!

Perfect365 is a free app that provides a plethora of options for instant glamour-fication! This app is perfect for any teacher who likes to take selfies with students but would like for the camera to be a little kinder (think soft filters and digital makeup options.) Thanks, April May, for this indispensable app.

Student Technology Tool of the Week: Google Easter Eggs!

Students love to find "hidden treasures" online and Google plays along with its various "Easter eggs."

16 Google Easter Eggs

17 popular Google Easter Eggs

Resources Spotlight

Quizizz is a free application that allows students to participate or host quiz games. Quizizz is accessible from any device and serves as a great application to assist with formative assessment. Educators can create their own activities or utilize activities already created by other educators. Quizizz does not require a username or password. Unlike Kahoot which displays a multiple choice question on a large screen to the entire class, Quizizz displays multiple choice questions randomly displayed on a participant's individual device. Questions are player-paced and educators have access to real time results.

123D Make is a free application that provides the ability to convert a 3D model into a real world object. 123D Make produces a 2D blueprint with animated assembly instructions. Students can access 123D Make from an iOS or Windows device. Blueprints can be exported as a PDF or EPS file. Students can build with any flat material that they can cut and can submit project to a gallery.

Minecraft is a “sandbox” video game that can be leveraged in a variety of ways to support design thinking and enrich curriculum via game-based learning. Users create explore, discover and share within a virtual world. Educators are integrating Minecraft into science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) content areas. Recent upgrades to Minecraft have incorporated a virtual reality (VR) component via Google Cardboard and Samsung’s Oculus Rift.

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Email Spam Virus: Be Vigilant!

There have been reports of email viruses affecting a neighboring school district, so be sure to follow the "spam protocol" when you find something a little "off" in an email subject line. It is very important to not open any emails that you think look a little strange, even if they are coming from someone that you know.

Click here to access the Technology department article about the steps to take in the event that you receive a suspicious email.

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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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