Elementary Ed Tech Update

February 2020

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Happy Valentine's Day!

Q: What did one font say to the other on Valentine’s Day?

A: You’re just my type.

Q: Why did the man send his wife’s Valentine through twitter?

A: Because she is his tweetheart.

We've got some interesting news to share with you this month, and we're looking ahead to much, much more! As always, we hope you'll take the time to read about what's going on regarding Ed Tech in Pearland ISD! Please let your ETS know if we can assist you with your Technology Integration!

Did you Know?!

We've got Training Tutorial Videos!!

Check out our website and YouTube channel for all kinds of tutorial videos!!

We have topics that range from Outlook to OneNote...and we are continuing to add!

Need to know how to do something in Forethought? We have an extensive online course with videos and instructions with everything you ever wanted to know and some things you didn't!! Check it out here!

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Novel Effect

This month, we wanted to share with you some out-of-the-ordinary updates! In January, after spending a few days on the campus at Microsoft near Seattle, I (Seth) was invited to visit the Novel Effect studios!

Aside from the experience, I think one of the coolest things to know about Novel Effect is where it's located - on a dock (literally over the water) on Lake Union, in Seattle, WA! The studio itself is small, but so is the team of developers. One of the rooms (pictured below) is the studio where all of the recordings for the soundscapes happen. And as I was recording (for a title soon to be announced), I noticed that they have a penguin! Too cool!

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While we were at the Novel Effect studios they also showed us a preview of the Voice-Driven Videos™ feature that they just released! I am excited for you to try this out with your class(es), and I'd ask that if you have feedback, please let us know and we'll pass it along to the Novel Effect team!

In the new interactive videos, your voice controls the story. Your students can move the story forward or choose what happens next, simply by reading the lines out loud when they appear. Novel Effect puts you in control with the unique opportunity to play along with the characters and connect with the story, shaping it as you go! This encourages them to read out loud and interact with stories they love in ways that have never before been possible, boosting their reading confidence!

Right now, there are only three interactive video options, with more on the way! My favorite (that had me laughing to tears) is "Cooking with Matt"! Give them a try and let your class become part of the action! I completely agree with what my friend Kathi said about the videos - "the story needs me!"

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Windows 10 Tips

Adjust the Volume

Did you know that the computer keyboard has a simple way to turn the computer volume up/down or mute? Look for a row of keys along the top, right side of the Dell keyboard. You will see a key with an icon of a speaker with an x, a key with an icon of a speaker with a curved line and another key with an icon of a speaker and several curved lines for controlling the volume. The first key will mute the volume, second one will lower the volume and the third key will raise the volume.

APPealing Tech Lessons


Want to dive into using Green Screen backgrounds with your students? Musemage is the app for you. The Blue Screen function allows you to use just about any solid color background as a green screen. There are also fun filters like comic, snow, and elongate. There's a time-lapse and stop motion function, too.

Ideas for Classroom Usage:

- Country reports with students standing in front of iconic landmarks

- Re-tell stories or create new stories using stop motion.

- Show a plant moving toward the sun with time lapse

- Turn student portraits into comic book pages

Cyber Savvy Tips

Seesaw and Digital Citizenship

In today's world, teaching digital citizenship is the responsibility of all of us involved in education. For regular Seesaw users, the 'likes' and 'comments' lend themselves easily to incorporating those lessons. By default, these features are turned off when new classes are first set up, and must be turned on by the teacher. Before doing so, discuss with students how the best comments support learning and build others up.

● Is your comment a conversation starter or conversation ender?

● Build others up with thoughtful and considerate comments

● Use commenting to ask questions and learn something new

● Offer insight and perspective, not just throwaway comments

● Practice asking good questions with respect for others and their culture

● Take time to think through your comments before you post them

These points can be practiced using the 'I do, we do, you do' method. First, teachers can model and discuss what makes a good Seesaw comment. Next, teachers and students work together to come up with a helpful comment. Finally, students come up with their own comments using the information gained by working with their teacher.

Click this link from Seesaw to download a Digital Citizenship poster for your own classroom: https://help.seesaw.me/hc/en-us/articles/360000068026-Digital-Citizenship-printable-posters

If you'd like help teaching students about being good digital citizens while in Seesaw, please contact your elementary ETS--we are all certified Seesaw Ambassadors, and would be happy to assist!

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Things We Found "PINteresting"

Connected Corner

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