ITRT News & Updates

ITRT Newsletter for Secondary Schools - January 2015

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MS Office 2013

Information and directions for downloading your personal copy of Microsoft Office was emailed on December 18, 2014. If you did not receive this email, deleted it, or need help please enter a help ticket into the work order system (http://sydney/otportal) if you are on the district's network or email the help desk ( if you are not on the district's network.

*Please note: If you are downloading Office on a Mac, the version will be 2011 as this is the latest version provided by Apple.

Web 2.0 Tool - ReadWriteThink Timelines

What is ReadWriteThink? ReadWriteThink is a website, in partnership with the International Reading Association and the National Council of Teachers of English, whose mission is to provide "access to the highest quality practices in reading and language arts instruction by offering the very best in free materials."

What is the Timeline Interactive? Timeline allows students to create a graphical representation of events or processes and allows both words and images. Timelines can be printed or saved to continue work at a later time. The timeline homepage also shares numerous lesson ideas for grades k-12. This is a great resources for students of all grade levels to create products that show what they know!


Organize everything! Evernote is a cloud storage application that allows users to add notes via text, audio, or images and organize them into online files- called ‘notebooks’. Evernote is designed to 'remember everything' and allows users to easily collect and find data on multiple devices. Evernote and a mobile device combined allow teachers to work effectively, move around the school and not be tethered to a desk in the classroom, with everything they need at their fingertips. To effectively become organized with Evernote many teachers are storing student assessment notes and portfolios, lesson plans and administrative tasks within the app. This means that no matter where the educator is, home or school, they can access all of their information efficiently.

Evernote is also supported on Android, MAC, PC and web.

Resources for Evernote

Please Note: When receiving an iPad for school use through school funds, grants, donations, PTA funds, etc., initial set up has to be completed by your ITRT. Please contact your ITRT as soon as you receive the iPad(s).


Check out this great infographic: Tech Tools for BYOD. Find out more about BYOD and what it means for teachers and students. This was shared at the ISTE 2014 Conference by Rachelle Wooten, educational technology specialist from Texas.

Social Media Spotlight:

We are excited to offer a workshop series to parents called Connecting Families-Helping Parents Connect with their Children’s Digital Lives.

The goal of this workshop series is to support families in raising kids who think critically, participate responsibly, and behave ethically in their online lives. The program materials were developed by Common Sense Education and are endorsed by the National PTA.

February Workshop Date/Description:

February 9, 2014

7:00-8:30 pm at The Georgetown School


What do teens think about cyberbullying?

How can they be a part of the solution?


Think beyond whole class instruction when it comes to your SMART Board and Notebook 14 software. Have students use the SMART Board or Notebook 14 software on desktop computers as a station during centers. Head to the SMART Exchange to search for pre-made activities to use with your students. Want to learn and explore this idea more? Come to the "SMART Stations" professional development session on January 29th from 3:15-4:15 at Henry Clay Elementary.

Technology Integration

Did you know that technology integration "improves K-12 achievement when digital and face-to-face instruction are integrated"? Did you know that technology integration provides students with opportunities to connect and collaborate with a global and authentic audience, improve communication skills, and become creative innovators? Take a look at this 4:53 minute video to explore other reasons why appropriate and effective technology integration is a must have in your classroom. You can read about it here as well.

EdTech 2015 Conference

Thursday, March 12th, 8:30am

1000 Floyd Ave

Richmond, VA

Save the date - The EdTech conference is back!

For those unfamiliar with EdTech, it is a regional educational technology conference geared towards teachers, administrators, school librarians, and ITRTs. This year's theme is Personalized Learning: Sparking Innovations for Students and Self.

This one-day conference will be held at Virginia Commonwealth University on Thursday, March 12th.

Click here for more information and to register:

Rebecca Narron - The Georgetown School

I look forward to continuing to work with you all this year! Please email anytime to setup times to plan, collaborate, or receive training.