#iCONNECT Tech Tips

Friday, October 24, 2014 #EHSRedDevils

Digital Passport Initiative: Full Steam Ahead!

The amazing 3rd and 4th grade teachers at Elkmont High School continue to expand the use of technology in their classrooms. Students have added the Limestone County School District's Symbaloo webmix as their home page in both Safari and Google. By using Symbaloo this way students can easily navigate to websites their teachers want them to use without the hassle of typing in a long or confusing URL.

Ms. Katie Walker is using Class DoJo to help encourage good behavior in her classroom. Class DoJo helps teachers instantly reinforce good behavior, communicate with parents, increase student engagement and collaborate with colleagues.

Next week the 4th grade DPI Team will work on a collaborative project using Google Maps to support what they are learning about Ecosystems. Watch our map grow HERE.

The 3rd grade DPI Team will begin using MobyMax next week to assist students in building their reading and math skills. MobyMax is an outstanding online resources that offers a free math, language, and reading curriculum for K-8 teachers. All lessons are aligned with the Common Core Standards and teachers can implement the service with very little work on their end.

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Athens Storytelling Festival

3rd and 4th grade students attended the Athens Storytelling Festival this week on Wednesday, October 22nd. Storytellers featured at the 8th annual event included Donald Davis, Carmen Deedy, Kevin Kling, Bil Lipp, John McCutcheon, and Andy Offutt Irwin. Our 3rd grade students were especially excited to hear from Carmen Deedy as they had just read a story written by Ms. Deedy in their Language Arts/Reading class.

Friday, DPI students wrote their own original stories using StoryBird. Storybird lets anyone make visual stories in seconds. StoryBird curates artwork from illustrators and animators around the world that inspire writers of any age to turn those images into original stories of their own.

Here is a link to one student's first very rough draft: http://storybird.com/books/emma-the-busy-girl/?token=2jmte7va8t Students will continue to work on their stories and examine them for grammar, spelling, plot, beginning, middle, end, conflict and resolution, etc. Stay tuned to see our final stories soon!

Other story writing technologies students could use include:

What story writing sites have you used?

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Broadband Internet access is a real issue facing Americas school children, especially in our area of the country. Please support the efforts of my friend, Tom Murray, state and district digital learning director for the Alliance for Excellent Education located in Washington, DC, as he works with Congress and the FCC to get the votes needed to make strong, reliable Broadband Internet a reality in 99% of the country over the next 5 years.

Right now, the typical K-12 public school has the same internet access as the average home – only with 200 times more users. That means 40 million of America’s K-12 students are being left behind without the Internet access they need in their schools. In a few weeks, the FCC will be voting to expand internet access in schools and we need educators’ help in telling them to vote “yes” to give our children the tools they need to succeed.

The FCC will also be monitoring #internet4schools hashtag. We envision this movement building in schools across our nation, so please help encourage educators you know to use their voice in helping the @FCC understand the need we have to support both teachers and kids in our schools! We also encourage you to use #internet4schools as much as possible through the months of October and November on ALL social media sites. (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, etc)

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Wheres my wifi? #internet4schools