Teaching with Tech Newsletter

Jan. 2019

Hello to all the wonderful educators of DeKalb County! We hope that you had a merry Christmas and happy New Year! In this newsletter, you will find valuable information on different levels of technology integration, this month's excellent edtech educator, and a featured tech tool. As always, if you have questions or need assistance with anything related to instructional technology, feel free to contact us. We are here to help!

How Do We Integrate Technology?

The video below offers a great explanation of the different levels of technology integration. Check it out! We think you will find it helpful.

Excellent EdTech Educator

Each month we are going to feature an educator in DeKalb County Schools that is doing some really amazing stuff with technology to enhance their students' learning.

This month's featured teacher is Seth Busby.

Big picture

Hey Seth, tell us a little about yourself. How long have you been teaching, what do you teach, etc?

Well, I am a social studies teacher at Plainview High School. I graduated from Plainview in 2012, and then went to Jacksonville State University for both my bachelor’s and master’s degrees. In 2017, I was blessed to be able to return home and give back to the school that gave so much to me. I currently teach government, economics, United States history, and psychology.

What is your favorite tech tool and why?

Definitely Flipgrid. I love for my students to be able to share their opinions on topics, and I think it is important for each student to be heard. However, limited class time often does not allow everyone to voice their opinions. Flipgrid solves this problem by allowing students to record themselves responding to a question from anywhere at any time. It’s a great tool for social learning because the students can watch their classmates’ videos and respond to them. It really helps students break out of their shells, too!

How have you been able to use technology to impact your students?

I have found that technology is able to immerse students into the material better than a textbook can. For example, instead of lecturing my government students on the electoral process, I can have them log on to icivics.org and play a simulation of a presidential election cycle. There, not only do they get surface-level knowledge of the electoral process, but they also get a personal (and fun!) experience that they can connect to new knowledge.

Seth's students created campaign poster for a mock election.

If there was a movie produced about your life, who would play you and why?

Probably Matthew McConaughey because of my tendency to use the word “alright.”

Alright, alright, alright! Ok, one last thing. Random weird fact about yourself…

I’m somewhat of a hot-sauce connoisseur. I like all hot sauces, but my favorite is Valentina’s. I keep a bottle of it in my lunchbox at all times. I put it on almost anything I eat. Pizza, burgers, macaroni, steak, chicken--it makes anything 10x better!

Thanks Seth! Keep up the good work!

Top-Notch Tech Tool - Flipgrid

Flipgrid is an online platform that allows students and teachers to respond to questions or prompts with a video. It can be used on Chromebooks or laptops or on mobile devices (by using the app) It is very simple to set up and use, but the uses are anything but simplistic. Students in every grade can use Flipgrid in every subject. Video length can be anywhere from 15 seconds up to 5 min. Or you can upload videos of any length. That makes Flipgrid a great way to share your students’ work with their families and community. Oh, and did I mention that it is completely free? Unlimited videos, topics, grids, and storage! You can’t beat that. To give you an idea of how Flipgrid can be used across the grades and subjects visit https://flipgrid.com/+dekalbk12.

Flipgrid iPad Giveaway

Do you like learning from other teachers? What about winning free stuff? Well here is your chance to do both!!! All you have to do is go to https://flipgrid.com/79ae995b and add a response to the topic. Make sure to watch the other teachers' responses as well. This is a great way to try Flipgrid for yourself. All teachers of DeKalb County Alabama Schools who participate by recording a response will be entered into a drawing to win an iPad for their classroom as well as some sweet Flipgrid swag! Responses must be submitted by Jan. 31. 2019 at 11:59 pm.

As always, contact us if you have any questions about using Flipgrid in your classroom.


"Flipgrid is the leading video discussion platform for millions of PreK to PhD educators, students, and families in 180+ countries. Create a Grid community for your classroom, school, PLC, #GridPals, families, and more!"

Tech Integration Specialist

Abbey Thomas

Abbey serves as the Technology Integration Specialist for Henagar, Ider, Moon Lake, Plainview, Ruhama, Sylvania, and Valley Head.

Rob Hullett

Rob serves as the Technology Integration Specialist for Crossville, Collinsville, Fyffe, and Geraldine.

If you have any questions or needs please don't hesitate to contact us!