Tech This Out!

May 2019 edition

In this newsletter:

  • A "digital citizenship for grown ups" password tip
  • Voice controlled smart speakers
  • Vocabulary practice with Flashcard Factory
  • Get your student devices ready for a new crowd
  • CUE Roxnard this summer--- last call!
  • Edcamp Hueneme-- save the date!
  • TechTober-- share what you do!


"Here, I'll just give you my password" - a poem by Liz and Mel

Don't do it. Don't share it.

Don't give it to someone else. Even if you trust them.

Even if you don't think the password protects anything important.

Don't joke "Don't complete my report cards for me..."

If you have a problem, don't email your password. To anyone.

Just don't. share. your. password.


There is always a better way. You just have to ask what it is.

If you share classes, put in a ticket and Mel can give you access.

If a para needs to print an ESGI report, sign in for them.

If you have a long term sub, talk to your principal.

There is always a better way.

Do not share your password.

Not your Q password. Not your email password. Not your computer password.

Do not share them here or there. Do not share them anywhere.

Do not put them on post-it notes. Do not put them on your keyboard.

Do not put them in your sub plans-- even if you think you know who your sub will be.

Do not share your password.


Do you get the idea? This is essentially the list Melanie gave me when I said "Tell me about passwords and the things you see that we don't want people doing".

Here's the thing--- what is student data? Their name. Their phone. Their address. Their parent names. Their grades. Their scores. Their ID. Their allergies. Their IEPs. All these things need to be protected. And they are almost all accessible through Q. We are required to protect student data.

Here's another things--- we can call it Securing the Human. People who hack into systems know the easiest way is: get a password from someone who shares it. Because they trust someone, or leave it out, or don't think it is worth protecting. "It's fine, you can use my password..." is just the beginning. Don't be the weak link allowing access by exposing your password.

Bottom line--- Please. PLEASE. don't share your Q or Email passwords. With anyone. Ever.


Voice Controlled Smart Speakers, like Alexa or Google Home

Have you heard of them? Do you have one at home? Super cool right?

I've seen the commercials--- "Alexa, play music" "Alexa, what time is it?" "Alexa, grade these papers" (no?)

And it seems like they might have a neat use in the classroom.

But we can't. For a couple reasons, but the primary one is--- The privacy policies for these devices don't protect our students and it doesn't feel smart to have a device in the classroom that is listening to everything (how does it know to respond when it hears 'Alexa'? It's listening for it.) without promising to protect all the data it gathers.

Not a risk we feel comfortable with. So, we won't be connecting smart speaker devices to our network, and if you have found a work around, please take your device home and don't use it in your classroom.

('gosh, Liz, why do you keep saying no!' I know, I didn't realize it was part of this deal, but here I am. Sorry. I'll try to post more 'yes'es. Keep reading...)

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YES! Vocabulary practice can be fun!

Have you heard of FLASHCARD FACTORY? I learned about it at the CUE conference this year and hope you will try it with your students!

Here's how YOU get ready:

  1. Go to the site here:
  2. Sign in as a teacher (free) with your Google account
  3. Click START A VOCAB LIST and enter your words. Feel free to make the definitions in kid friendly language. The list will save in your Google Drive

Now is the fun part!

  1. Open the flashcard set, or choose "Play Flashcard Factory" in the top right
  2. Your students will go to (that's pd for Pear Deck, not the pd teachers know)
  3. There will be a code for them to enter
  4. Student will be divided into Day Shift and Night Shift, then partnered up to make the flashcards
  5. Each pair will see a word and definition. One student describes with words, the other draws a picture (collaborating to make sure the description and picture go together).
  6. When they are done, they ship the card to the Flashcard Factory and start on a new word.

After a bit, the students have collectively created cards for all the words and you will be directed to Quality Control to approve/reject the factory work. The approved cards can be sent to where students can practice the cards they have made.

Give it a try! Tell me how it goes!

Want to try it but aren't exactly sure? Let me come to your room and run a session with you and your students the first time. The end of the year is a great time to try something new!

YES! I would love to do a demonstration lesson to help get you started with a new strategy!


Yes! June is coming!

So let's start thinking about the end of the year! What can you have your students do to prepare their accounts and your devices for the fall?

There are a few things before you shut them all the way down (iPad- hard button on the top, cb- button in the bottom left after signing out) and lock the cart for summer.

If you use Google Docs/Slides/Drive (and I hope you do) there are couple tips:

  1. Have students open Drive (the app on iPads, or on chromebooks) and search for "untitiled". They can either name or delete all the files they didn't name originally.
  2. Have students create a folder for this school year, if they don't already have one from Google Classroom (My Drive--- Classroom--- name of your GClassroom)
  3. Show them how to drag or move all files from this year to that folder. This will clean up their Google Drive for next year. (not sure how? I'd love to come walk your class through it and show you at the same time)

If you have iPads, there are a few more things to sign them out of accounts. This Google Doc will help you out.


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YES! We want to send you to CUE Rockstar Oxnard!

If you know what it is, you are excited and will head straight to the form. But if you don't, keep reading so you can know why this is so exciting!

If you know you will be in town August 6 and 7 and the thought of spending a few days with colleagues learning curriculum focused ideas for technology integration EXCITES you, then you are just the rockstar we are looking for! This year Roxnard will be focusing on the easily adaptable routines of EDUPROTOCOLS by Jon Corippo and Marlena Hebert. Expect some "study group" style collaboration in the fall.

Want to join in? Complete the form below. Registration is non-refundable and usually non-transferrable. So, there are two options on the form--- (1) I know I can go and (2) I want to go, check back with me if you do another round of registrations because I can't commit to the date right now (whew, that is a long option!)

Talk with your grade level team, mention it to your friends, this is a big deal!


YES! We want YOU at Edcamp Hueneme

Edcamp Hueneme. You want to come. We are hoping for our biggest year ever!

Pancakes, learning, conversations, sunshine, raffles, getting to know each other better... we love Edcamp Hueneme!

Save the Date! Saturday September 21 from 8ish to 12ish

Because we really want you to be part of it!

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YES! You know things you should share with others!

You know stuff, and you should share that stuff with other teachers. Gold Coast CUE's TechTober event is just for that! Local people sharing what is working with their students.

So, what are some things you do that you could share? I dare you to submit to present at Gold Coast CUE's TechTober on Saturday October 5. Or convince someone who has helped you--- tell them they should share! Classroom sized groups of other people who know the struggle.

We want this event to be awesome, and I don't know any awesome-er teachers than you all!

Applications can be submitted until the end of August, but you know you'll forget! Talk to me and I'll help remind you! :)

Click here for more information

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