Tech Ninja Blast

Week of February 8, 2016

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This Week's "JOT": Read&Write!

This week we're pleased to introduce Read&Write by Texthelp. This cross-platform, Google-integrated application was first brought to our attention by our very own Occupational Therapists and tech ninja specialist Diane McCluskey. Diane has worked extensively with Read&Write in her previous district where she observed this extension (or Add-on) greatly assist students with reading and writing challenges and ultimately improve their ability to process and interact with complex texts.

As described on the Chrome Webstore:

"Read&Write for Google Chrome™ offers a range of powerful support tools to help students gain confidence with reading, writing, studying and research, including:

  • Hear words, passages, or whole documents read aloud with easy-to-follow dual color highlighting
  • See the meaning of words explained with text and picture dictionaries
  • Hear text translated into other languages
  • Get suggestions for the current or next word as you type
  • Turn words into text as you speak
  • Highlight text in documents or the web and collect for use in other documents
  • Create and listen to voice notes directly inside of Google Docs
  • Simplify and summarize text on web pages

Read&Write works with web pages and common file types in Google Drive, including:

  • Google Docs
  • PDF
  • ePub
  • Kes

...Install Read&Write for Google Chrome™ to access ALL of these features FREE for 30 days!

Teachers can get a FREE premium subscription to Read&Write for Google Chrome...

To register and activate your subscription, go to after installing the Read&Write for Google Chrome trial."

Read&Write is currently being reviewed for possible district-wide use as a support tool for learners at the K-5 level.

For more information on Read&Write contact Diane directly at 831-646-6560 ext. 233.

Here's a quick video of Read&Write in action. Let us know what you think.

Read&Write for Google Chrome™ - An Introduction


Q: How can you modify an Illuminate assessment so that you can provide GenEd +SpEd test in the same class?

A: This is a great question as certain students in your class might have testing accommodations or modifications described in their IEPs. The answer....Duplicate! (an existing test or one generated in the Itembank)

To modify the answer portion of an existing test:

  1. go to 'Assessments' (List Assessments)
  2. click on the specific assessment, and look for the "Duplicate" column
  3. Click on the duplicate icon and rename. This allows for the original assessment to be copied and edited (modified) as needed. Common assessment modifications might include:
  • Reducing the number of answer choices
  • Reduce the number of questions
  • Allow for alternative answers (giving students option explain their answer to you)

To modify the content of the test itself (within the Itembank):

  1. go to 'Itembank' and the 'Assessment' tab
  2. On the far right column, click on the duplicate icon and make revisions to the items and/or passages on the 'Review' + 'Add Items' tabs. This feature is perfect for creating versions of the assessment when an IEP calls for:
  • Simplifying the language in the item stems
  • Reduce the number of questions
  • Designating certain questions "extra credit"
  • Adjusting lexile levels of contained passages

For more about how you can better use Illuminate in your class, contact Mr. Binder to schedule your free consultation today! ;-)

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AI -"Article of Inspiration"

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Where's Binder This Week?

  • Mon, Feb 8: Ed-Tech Plan Dev. and Assessment Support
  • Tues, Feb 9: Ed-Tech Support (MS), Illuminate Assessment Support (DO)
  • Wed, Feb 10: Ed-Tech Support (FG), Illuminate Assessment Support (DO)
  • Thurs,Feb 11: Ed-Tech Plan Dev. (DO), TIDES - Collaboration Meeting (MS)
  • Fri, Feb 12: TTM Training/Data Review (MS)