Bellevue Public Schools, Bellevue, NE
It All Started With a Tweet
What a fantastic start to the 2016-2017 school year! Before we were all gathered together as one staff at Bellevue East for our opening, we had a sneak peak of the day with a tweet from our new Superintendent, Dr. Jeff Rippe.
This tweet lit our district social media on fire. Teachers started using Twitter as a back channel throughout our rockin’ good morning and posting video clips to Facebook.
We were excited to reunite as an entire staff starting with a vendor expo that included many local businesses. We followed that up with a light hearted welcome from Board of Education President Phil Davidson. Dr. Rippe gave a positive, uplifting and supportive welcome to all staff. Then, the moment we were all waiting for, BPS brought in Billy McGuigan and Jimmy Weber for entertainment! Singing, dancing and laughter filled the auditorium! The positivity, energy, and happiness provided momentum that continued into our opening day with students. We wish everyone involved with BPS a fantastic kick off to your year.
We are Champions for Children!
This video was a Facebook sensation too, reaching 904 people!
Trainings are in Full Swing
Building Tech Coordinators started the school year a day before all teachers returned. Training focused around our three technology goals: Apple, Google and Schoology. This year, Building Tech Coordinators will be honing their iPad skills. Every BTC either has a class set of iPads or a garden of several iPads to use in their classrooms.
New teachers had a ½ day of technology training during new teacher inservice days. We gave them an overview of district technology, got them setup with Schoology, and connected them to technology resources within the district, including the BPS online curriculum materials and our bi-weekly T-Flash newsletter. What an awesome group of people joining our Team BPS!
Green Screen Rooms are Popping Up Across the District
Our first green screen room in the district appeared back in 2014 at Lewis and Clark Middle School where retired Media Specialist, Pat Smith, had a vision for a creation space in the media center.
Since that time, hundreds of kids have been through what was fondly named Studio 3B to create projects using the green screen.
Now we have two more buildings with dedicated green screen spaces, Leonard Lawrence Elementary and Bellevue East High School.
What can students do with a green screen? A green screen allows students to take creation to new levels by putting different backgrounds, both video and image, behind them as they speak. Students plan, write, create and edit the video projects. Video creation provides an opportunity for students to collaborate, create and problem-solve while trying to effectively communicate their message.
Getting started in simple. Here is what you need to get started?
iPad with the Green Screen by Doink App
Collapsible Green Screen Background, painted wall, or green sheet/paper
Would be nice to have:
Once students create, they need a place to share their work. A slick and easy way is to share their projects with the app Seesaw. It is simple to set up and even easier for students to use. Once they share their video, their classmates can view and leave comments, both as text or audio. It is a powerful way to let students share their creations with their classmates, teachers and parents.
Interested? Contact us and we will help you get the green screen creations rolling with your students.
To learn more about how to use green screen in the classroom, check out Lisa Pack’s (@ilisapack) resoures on her website at https://sites.google.com/site/doanetechmaster/green-screen.
Tools for Connecting with Parents
Communication plays such an important role in giving parents/guardians a look inside the classroom. Technology provides us with a variety of ways that teachers, administrators, coaches and sponsors can connect with family members and the community. Here are four of our favorite communication tools.
Remind is a free text messaging app that allows you to send messages to students and parents without having to share your actual phone number. You can schedule reminders ahead of time and it will allow you to see who has read your messages. Another feature of Remind is that it will translate into over 70 languages.
Did you know that 75% of parents are on Facebook? What a great place to reach out and share what is happening in your classroom, on your team, or in your club. Creating a FB page gives parents, grandparents and the community the chance to “like” your page in order to get updates when you share a post. You can post pictures, videos, reminders and important dates to your page.
Class Dojo is an online behavior management system used to encourage positive student behavior and create a positive classroom culture. Students are given Dojo points for positive behavior and can connect parents by sharing photos and videos of classroom moments.
Back to School Tips on Apple, Google, and Schoology
There is no forward delete key on the mac-To forward delete hold down fn + delete.
Do you love keyboard shortcuts? Click here for the gmail cheat sheet infographic.
Interested in having students share projects? Use the discussion feature in Schoology. As a teacher, click on Add Materials -> Add Discussion. Students can add just about any file type by clicking the discussion tab within the discussion and clicking the + to add the file. Once the file is added to the discussion, all students in the class will see the project and can provide feedback.
Hashtags Telling Our Story
One of the most powerful parts of Twitter is the hashtag! It connects people, ideas, and creates communities within Twitter. It is a unique way for our teachers and administrators to share the amazing things happening in our schools, classrooms, clubs, teams and organizations. Our district hashtag, #bpsne, continues to grow and is becoming a powerful tool that we can leverage as a district to connect all of our teachers, students, parents, and community members. We encourage you to continue sharing the great things happening in your classrooms. Let's create the 2016-2017 Bellevue Public Schools story together!
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