Teachers with Techitude

A monthly tech newsletter for the awesome HESD staff

In this winter wonderland January 2018 edition:

  • STRATEGIES (Hour of Code, some Google fun, Flipgrid)
  • ANNOUNCEMENTS (EADMS, and the Thomas Fire)
  • and some flashback news at the end

Wecome back to school, and welcome to 2018!

As teachers, we are usually ready to do the "fresh start" of January, but this year has been unique and there are some loose ends dangling, looking for the usual closure of December. Let technology help build community and provide space for students to share their thoughts and experiences over the last month.
FLIPGRID (more info below) is a great way to allow students to record short selfie videos that are shared with classmates on a virtual video bulletin board. Teachers create accounts; students use the board code you will create

* Chromebooks-- go to flipgrid.com.

* iPads-- request the Flipgrid app by submitting a tech request (it is already approved for use)

GOOGLE CLASSROOM has a Question option that allows students to submit a confidential response to you, or you can choose to allow students to see responses after they submit theirs. Teachers go to the plus sign and add a question.

* if you use Google Apps with students and haven't used Google Classroom, you are missing a tool that will save SOOOO much time. Ask around on campus or email me for help!

CHATTERPIX/CHATTERKIDS (ipads only) is perfect for any speaking activity, and is a good way to share a journal type prompt, too. Student can draw a picture or take a selfie, then draw a line for a mouth and make their photo talk by recording audio.

(Listen-- think book talks, social skills role playing, informational reports-- this app can get kids talking about anything!)

These types of quick prompts (What do you want to tell me about your winter break? What is one reason you are glad to be back at school? If it snowed tomorrow, what do you think it would be like?) are a good time to share some new tech uses because the academic load is low. Then, when you use the strategy in an academic setting, they aren't learning new technology, it is more familiar.


The rest of this newsletter is a repeat of the December newsletter, in case you missed it!

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Spend some "HOUR of CODE" time with your students this month!

Many of you enjoyed Hour of Code with your students last year, and it is that time again! Find an hour this month to allow your students to explore the world of coding!
  • There are so many options for all grade levels and all experience levels to begin learn coding concepts. If you have tried it, you know how students connect with coding, and it is a GREAT way to bring the math practice and critical thinking standards into practice
  • Please plan to join the movement at some point this month or in January-- or hey, what about both?

Note: December is not a magical month for coding--- use these resources after break and beyond!


Use Google for some Wintery fun!

Eric at Control Alt Achieve has some fun templates and ideas.

Pixel art, magnetic poetry and emoji stories, oh my!!!

These lessons would be good now, or into January. Proof that Google Slides are not just for presentations!


Flip for Flipgrid!

Flipgrid is a website that is like a selfie video bulletin board. So great for students to give feedback, explain their learning, practice their language structures, respond to a 'what if' question... all while practicing their listening and speaking skills with an authentic audience of their peers!

The best way to understand Flipgrid is to check it out! Here is a Flipgrid explorer about BRAINS, so you can see how it works. You can create a board with a prompt so your students can respond. I would love to help you get started with Flipgrid!


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Let's COAST and learn!

Are you playing? Collaborative, Online, Activity Based, Self Paced Training is the thing to get you the training you want, WHEN you want! Sign in at alludolearning.com (top right corner) with your @hsdschools.org Google account and get started!

Congratulations to the 7 teachers and 2 admin who have completed Level 1! Surf's up! Enjoy your tshirt and upgraded teacher iPad! What are the rest of you waiting for?


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*** Dave Burgess is coming to Ventura County to speak! We are all so excited at the opportunity! ***

All Hueneme staff can get a free ticket. This will not change!

Here is the new twist:

  • Our colleagues from *outside the district* can get a ticket to attend for only $10 in December (price will increase in January)
  • Invite 3 people to join us, and you will win a Teach Like a Pirate t-shirt! (fine print: they have to put your name in the referral box when they get their ticket, and they have to actually attend the amazing event)

So, invite far and wide! Spread the word! Share the Eventbrite link!

Let's show Dave Burgess that Hueneme, and all of Ventura County, is ALL ABOUT engaging instruction for our students!

Click here to get your free ticket!

(Seriously, click this link to register. You don't want to miss this opportunity)


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If you are wrapping up the trimester assessments, this might help...

Are you feeling overwhelmed with where data goes and how to access it in EADMS? We hear ya, so we added some info to the Common Assessments doc and we made a video for you!


Gratitude through the Thomas Fire

This past month has been such an example of community and the way the Hueneme family encourages each other. Here is an opportunity to help your students process the events of the Thomas fire by showing gratitude to our first responders. Complete THIS FORM and get matched with an agency for you and your students to adopt and express appreciation. Thank you to the Ventura USD teachers who have put this together!


Join a "Letter & Art Campaign" to thank as many of our emergency responders as we can find. Fill out this simple form to be "matched." You will get info/mailing address so that all responders receive our kids' thanks! (from @mwantz on Twittter)


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Donors Choose is awesome, but...

PLEASE, before requesting anything technology related, run it past the tech department.

We can not connect all devices (color printers, tablets etc) to our network, and not all apps/sites required (to use robots, for example) can be loaded on our iPads or used on our Chromebooks for privacy policy reasons.

This is NOT a time for "ask forgiveness, not permission", but it IS an example of "look before you leap"

We want you and your students to have cool stuff, but technology has some parameters you probably aren't aware of. Help US help YOU, see what I'm sayin?


Digital Citizenship--- a thread woven, rather than a lesson taught

The appropriate time to teach digital citizenship is always now. You probably are familiar with the one lesson your grade level teaches, but there are four more. Look though your grade level, and earlier grade levels, and use the lessons that meet the needs of your students. It is important that we are all learning how to be safe online!

Click here to see your Digital Citizenship resource options!


Liz Hoppe, technology resource teacher

Looking for information from past newsletters? See the archive on our Tech Department page (click here)