DTL e-Digest

Technology Tips & Strategies

September 2019

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I decided this month to take a detour and provide a story that has been a part of my educational journey, and is a core component of how I approach teaching and learning.

A young boy wants desperately for his father to play with him and continues to tug as his father’s shirt. The father is engaged in a work project and continues to dismiss the son saying, “I’m busy, go play with your toys”. The insistent boy continues to beg for the father’s attention. Becoming annoyed, the father finds a magazine page with a picture of the Earth on it and tears it into tiny pieces, and proceeds to hand the paper scraps to the son. He tells the young boy, “here son, this is a puzzle that I want you to put together. It’s a puzzle of the earth, go put it together and then after that maybe we can play.” The father is confident that this will take the boy hours to complete and will keep the man from being ‘bothered’ while he works.

Within 15 minutes the son returns with the puzzle of the Earth completed with tape holding the tiny pieces of paper together. The father is stunned and immediately asks the boy, “how did you put that together, so quickly?”. The boy smiles at his dad and says, “well it was easy, dad. You see, there was a picture of a heart on the other side of the page and I knew if I got the HEART right then everything else would fall into place.”

Two valuable lessons here . . .

  1. We as educators can’t fail if we have our HEARTS right. If we truly care about kids then everything else will eventually fall into place.

  2. The father had to re-evaluate his own HEART and determine that the giving of time and attention is all these kids want (and need) from us.

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Megan Houchins, First Grade Teacher, Lakeshore Elementary

Teacher Spotlight Oct 2019
Nominate an Innovative Teacher

Open this form to nominate a colleague for the Teacher Spotlight who is doing some innovative instructure for students.

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What is NC Wise Owl?


Provided by the state of North Carolina it is a resource for students, parents and teachers to access Research Databases, E-Journals, Magazine Subscriptions, Collections, Primary Sources, Encyclopedias, eBooks and more! It was created to make sure that the students of North Carolina have resources for research for homework, projects and assignments no matter which school they attend in the state.

The NCWiseOwl Toolkit provides tutorial guides, Instructional Support, Professional Learning and more.

Important Notes:

  1. A password should not be needed at any school campus in our district, but will be needed at home. Ask your Media Coordinator for the password. (Passwords cannot be posted publicly).
  2. Some databases can be integrated with Canvas as well!
NCWiseOwl Toolkit

Click here to go to a public Canvas Course full of NCWiseOwl resources & support

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Apple Classroom - Elementary Teachers - Apple Classroom can be a GAME CHANGER when managing multiple iPads in your classroom. It allows you, from your teacher iPad, to monitor what the students are doing on their iPads, send them directly to an app and lock them in if you choose, share lesson templates with them and then they can send it back to you. Contact your DTL Coaches, Jackie Parker (jparker) and Susan Pope (sjpope) if you would like some help getting it set up on your classroom iPads.

Apple Coaching Cycles - Contact the Digital Teaching & Learning Coaches if your school is interested in participating in a Coaching Cycle. Your Digital Teaching & Learning Coaches can come guide your teachers through a coaching cycle. The cycles consist of 3 days together: Day 1 planning together, Day 2 co-teaching and Day 3 reflecting on the lesson and technology integration.

Coming Soon: Apple Vanguard Academy 2019-2020 Cohorts - We will have 3 elementary cohorts this year with a total capacity of 60 participants. Keep your eyes open for more information in the coming weeks.

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IQuest Online Professional Learning Courses are Now Live!

IQuest OPL Opportunities

iQuest OPL Micro-Credentials LAUNCHING October 1, 2019

Want to learn at your own pace? Want to learn with colleagues in a PLC? Want to earn renewal credit? What to learn, connect, share, and grow?

iQuest Micro-Credentials Online Professional Learning will meet your specific learning need.

What are Micro-Credentials?

Micro-credentials promote learning by doing where educators demonstrate competency in a specific skill. To earn a micro-credential, educators must apply their learnings in their practice, collect evidence, and demonstrate their competence.

Read more about I-SS iQuest Micro-Credentials by exploring the following details.

iQuest Micro-Credentials

This flyer outlines some details about how to participate in the iQuest Micro-Credentials OPL.

Other Learning & Growing Opportunties

  1. Friday Institute MOOCeds: Massive Open Online Courses are offered by the Friday Institute. These free courses allow educators to learn on a variety of topics. These courses are self-paced and will award contact and participation hours for CEUs. There are ten courses to choose from.

  2. Microcredentials with the Digital Promise: Get started exploring and learning. There are a variety of Microcredentials to choose from. Learn. Grow. Share with Digital Promise.

  3. Canvas.Net: Canvas.Net is a catalog of professional learning covering a wide range of topics (content and curriculum, blended learning, to languages). Teachers and Administrators can search the entire catalog.

  4. NCCAT Online Professional Learning Catalog: NCCAT offers a range of free online professional learning for teachers. Check out the Catalog and choose the learning experience based on need.
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The Canvas of Things

Read about the latest updates, new releases, tips, and strategies related to Canvas.

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Teacher Pay Teacher & Copyright

Please be careful not to share and post resources that you have purchased. The site and most resources state that they are licensed for individual use.

From the FAQs on the site...

“Resources on Teacher Pay Teacher are licensed for individual use. Individual Licenses are non-transferable and may not be used by or reallocated to a different educator. Your license doesn’t cover use by another friend or colleague.”

#GoOpen NC & Open Educational Resources

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Have you heard about the NC open educational resources initiative? Open educational resources (OER) are resources for students and teachers that are licensed to permit users to reuse, revise, remix, and redistribute the content. Imagine a space where a community of North Carolina educators can come together to curate, create, and share OER! That’s what GoOpenNC is all about!

GoOpenNC is the name of the OER initiative here in North Carolina, and it’s also the name of the platform where NC educators can become part of this OER community of practice as they find, develop, and share instructional materials. The platform will be available for all teachers in late December / early January, but you have an opportunity to join the community now!

Register to attend one of the four face-to-face sessions taking place across the state in October. You are encouraged to partner with others from your district or school to attend as a team.

These sessions are designed for classroom teachers, instructional technology facilitators, school library media coordinators, instructional coaches, and other instructional support staff.

During this session, participants will

  • Learn about open educational resources & open licensing
  • Explore and engage with the GoOpenNC platform
  • Discuss the definition of “quality” & apply knowledge to OER
  • Develop a plan for sharing and using OER

Space is limited, so be sure to register soon!

Dates and locations:

  • October 9 - Wilkes County Schools Stone Center, 613 Cherry St, North Wilkesboro, NC 28659
  • October 10 - Rowan-Salisbury Schools Wallace Ed Forum, 500 N Main St, Salisbury, NC 28144
  • October 11 - Edgecombe County Public Schools Technology Center, 412 Pearl Street, Tarboro, NC 27886
  • October 22 - Wayne County Schools PD & Family Engagement Center, 415 S. Virginia St., Goldsboro, NC 27530


Each session will start at 9:00 AM and end by 4:00 PM. Lunch will be on your own. Additional details will be provided via email prior to the event.

Must Have Chrome Extensions for Teachers & Students

This month, we focus Chrome Extensions for students to help with reading and accessibility. If you want your students to have access to any of the following Extensions, please use the request form below.

Are there Chrome extensions to which you want students to have access?

Chrome extensions are such powerful tools to leverage student learning. Currently, students do not have the ability to add Extensions. If there are extensions you would like to use for instructional purposes, submit the following request form.
Request Chrome Extensions for Students

Submit a student Chrome extension request using this form.

Digital Citizenship

Common Sense Media has launched NEW Digital Citizenship Curriculum. And it is Free to use with students and parents. The curriculum covers six competencies: Media & Balance, Privacy & Security, Digital Footprint & Identity, Relationships & Communication, Cyberbullying, Digital Drama, & Hate Speech, and News & Media Literacy.

The following videos are excerpts from the full curriculum representing two of the six core competencies. You will find both elementary and secondary examples.

Elementary Example (Media & Balance)

Rings of Responsibility Video (ISTE VERSION DO NOT USE)

Secondary Example (Digital Footprint & Identity)

Teen Voices: Who Are You on Social Media?
Access the Full Digital Citizenship Curriculum

Free Lessons for All Grade Levels which include videos, handouts, assessments, & family actvities.

20 Youtube Channels for Educators

Podcast by Subject Area

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How to Get Better at the Things You Care About?

Every job is important and has room for improvement and change. Whether it’s your professional or personal life, your box only exists because you let it, according to Eduardo Briceño.

How to get better at the things you care about | Eduardo Briceño
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From Kid President

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