TechBits - January 2016

Updates from the Instructional Technology Team

Second Annual OSD Technology Fair - Jan 23

The Tech Fair is nearly here, and you and your students are invited to participate! Each school will have tables and booths to share the ways that technology is integrated into learning activities big and small. Take a look at the FACT SHEET HERE.

This year we are adding a new component to our OSD Technology Fair. The Student Challenge is a competition designed to allow groups from each school to engage in using collaboration, problem solving, and classroom technology to persuade, inform, and/or entertain an audience. Read more about the STUDENT CHALLENGE HERE.

Questions? Please talk to your TAC representative or call or email one of the instructional tech coaches.

Hapara Interact Becomes Highlights

The Interact feature of Hapara has been updated to a newer version called Highlights and is now LIVE. Here is a quick overview of what's new:

  • Better view of students browsing activity during class
  • Capability to send up to 5 sites/URLs to students at one time
  • Ability to target and focus students’ browsing activity to particular sites for a set period of time
  • Capability to better capture student activity online
  • Improved connectivity and troubleshooting for classroom teachers and students

If you used Interact, Highlights should be a great update for you and your students. Please consult the link below for more information.

Hapara Highlights User Guide

PBS Learning Media for Curriculum and Student Research

Looking for short video clips and other resources for science and social studies research? PBS Learning Media is a great free source of high interest, age appropriate, standards-aligned content and information.

For elementary teachers focusing on world explorers, check out the World Explorers Collection. "Some sailed across the Atlantic, others rocketed to the moon. Learn more about the lives and journeys of some of history's greatest explorers with our PBS World Explorers collection."

Do You Know these Google Search Tricks?

We all know that Google search leads us to websites, but the engineers in Mountain View have added all kinds of functionality to improve results or shortcut answers. Check out these powerful and whimsical search tips.

Help Us Help You! New and Improved Helpdesk Ticket Tracking

Did you know that you can put in your own Helpdesk tickets and track the progress? With the updated system, you will receive an email each time your ticket is updated or transferred. You can add notes for tech department staff and even reopen a closed ticket. You can also see your entire ticket history to track trends. Entering tickets rather than calling or emailing ensures that you can track your requests over time.

Go to Sign in with your OSD username and password and create tickets to your heart's content.

Technology Professional Development Opportunities

Please check the calendar on MyOSD for upcoming workshops.

We are also happy to schedule workshops that match your individual building's needs.

Want to Put on Your Own Technology Workshop?

If you and/or others in your building wish to lead a tech PD session, please fill out the form at

The form will be reviewed to make sure that it is consistent with the District’s direction with technology. Workshops should be tied to the umbrella list of aligned training topics, as set by the district instructional technology staff.

Tech Advisory Committee 1/21/16 at OHS

The Technology Advisory Committee (TAC) meets monthly and includes a representative from each building. Extra credit if you know who your building rep is! The next meeting is Thursday, January 21 at Olympia High School, room TBA. Secondary meetings begin at 3:15. Elementary meetings begin at 4:15. TAC reps may attend in person or online via Google Hangout.

TAC members represent their schools and have the responsibility to communicate information about district technology initiatives. Please ask your TAC rep for the latest tech news or to relay any questions or concerns you may have.

Your OSD Instructional Technology Coaches