Thursday, December 21, 2017

Post #12: iPads, Report Cards,





Wishing everyone a relaxing and healthy winter break! Please let me know if you have any questions.



REMINDER on iPads: Joe has asked that we not update school iPads to iOS 11. Your iPads may get the prompt to update, but PLEASE DO NOT. If you update, it makes sending app updates to your iPads difficult. Please instruct your students to ignore the prompts or select "remind me later". 

**Teachers receiving new iPads over the holiday break were emailed directly.**
Report Cards: As per Leisha's email, you can now begin entering competencies on the elementary report card in eSchoolPlus. Here is a link to the Elementary Report Card training document. Please let me know if you have any questions.





Thursday, December 14, 2017

Post #11: Classroom Equipment, iPads,





Wishing everyone a wonderful weekend!




Classroom Equipment: With all of the sicknesses going around, it's probably a good idea to clean your classroom equipment regularly. If you are in need of supplies, I have plenty in the computer lab. Any wipes that you use should not be dripping wet. Please squeeze out any excess liquid from the wipe before cleaning the devices. Stay healthy!



iPads: Joe has asked that we not update school iPads to iOS 11. Your iPads may get the prompt to update, but PLEASE DO NOT. If you update, it makes sending app updates to your iPads difficult. Please instruct your students to ignore the prompts or select "remind me later". 



**Also we are fortunate to be getting some new iPads for the building. I am working with Joe to replace the oldest iPads first. If you will be receiving new iPads to replace some of your older iPads, I will reach out to you in an email. We are hoping to coordinate this project for over the December break.**

The last part of this plan will be to take 12 of the best iPads that we remove from your classroom carts to build a small cart that can be checked out from the lab. My goal is that the lab cart of 25 iPads will remain in tack for whole class use; while the small cart will be signed out when you only need 6-12 iPads.  

Friday, December 8, 2017

Post #10: Report Cards, Software Security & Zoom Tool




Lots of coding and problem solving this week in technology classes. Equipment wise, I feel like the building is in good shape - not that many tech requests. If that is not the case, please let me know. Joe is usually here are Monday and Thursday mornings.

Wishing you a wonderful weekend.



Report Cards & eSchool: Leisha and Eva are still fine-tuning the elementary report card in eSchool. Leisha will advise us when you can begin inputting your report card data. Please stay tuned.

Software Security Updates: Please be sure to install the software update when you computer is prompted to do so. These are critical updates for the security of your computer.

Zoom Tool from Staff Meeting: If you'd like to use the zoom feature I demoed at the staff meeting, here is a video tutorial




Thursday, November 30, 2017

Post #9: BrainPOP, Code.org, PLC Meetings, Subscription Renewals, Technology Committee


It's been a wonderful week back; lots of gratitude this week for all you do to support technology at Happy Hollow and in the district. Thank you for being so supportive during the eSchoolPlus preview workshop on Wednesday and to those on the Technology Committee. Your feedback is very important to our success. Wishing everyone a wonderful weekend as we head into the next part of the holiday season.



BrainPOP - Accounts have been created for students in grades 4 and 5. If you'd like to make a classroom in BrainPOP, you can create assignments and have students join your class (similar to Google Classroom). I believe you can even add BrainPop assignments into your Google Classroom. I hope to use it with students next week as they have a few coding projects.



Code.org - A HUGE thank you to teachers for helping in the collection of permission slips for Code.org. I only need 9 more!! I have no doubt I will be able to collect those from students. They are probably tired of seeing me :) Next week is the official Hour of Code. I will be doing coding activities with students in technology class outside of Code.org as that site usually gets very slow during the official week. If all goes well with the last 9 permission slips, I will plan on starting all classes with Code.org the week of December 11th.  

PLC Meetings: I know that your PLC agendas are filling up. However, please let me know if you'd like me to attend an upcoming PLC to discuss technology. I'd be happy to answer any questions or provide training/support to you as a team.

Subscription Renewals: Based on the feedback from the HH Subscription Renewal survey, I have renewed BrainPop/BrainPop Jr, TumbleBooks/TumbleCloud Jr. and More Starfall. CultureGrams does not expire until March. I will review that request in January. Thank you for your feedback.

Technology Committee: We had our first technology committee meeting of the year yesterday, Thursday, November 30th at 3:30 in the computer lab. We had a wonderful discussion on a variety of topics. Here are our agenda notes.  Our next meeting is Wednesday, January 10th @ 2:30. 
All are welcome to attend and join in our discussions.


Friday, November 17, 2017

Post #8: Code.org, Headphones, Innovation Summit Sharing




Happy Friday! A few updates below. Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns. I'd be happy to attend a grade level PLC meeting to work with you. Just let me know.

Wishing everyone a wonderful Thanksgiving Break.


Code.org:
 Thank you for continuing to facilitate the Code.org permissions slips. We are getting really close to having all permission slips returned. Please send them down to the lab as they come in. 



Please remind your students to RETURN all headphones that they borrow from the pocket chart behind the computer lab door. I restocked the pocket chart last week with 11 pairs of headphones to borrow. As of this writing, there are 3 pairs left. 
Innovation Summit: This week, I attended the 2017 EdTech Teacher Innovation Summit. Lots of wonderful information around creativity,  collaboration, computational thinking, and critical thinking. These are a couple of quick takeaways I wanted to share:

  • Which One Doesn't Belong - website to get kids thinking in different ways related to math (shapes, numbers and graphs & equations). You are given picture (grid) with 4 items - then you need to decide why something doesn't belong.
  • Student Recordings - Do you have students record in your classrooms? It can be tough to record in a classroom environment. Buy $1 earbuds with built-in mic. Cheap and easy solution.
  • Hyperdocs - Do you know what these are? It's like a Webquest for the 21st-century learner. Students can work through the unit at their own pace, work collaboratively, and share their thinking. You are then freed up to facilitate projects and work with small groups of students. Check out the presentation link and examples if you are interested in learning more. 



Sunday, November 12, 2017

Post #7: Code.org, Headphones, Online Software Request Form (Fixed),







I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend. Please let me know if you have any questions.





Code.org: Thank you for facilitating the Code.org permissions slips. Feel free to send them down to the lab at any time. Once I have all permission slips, I will create accounts for students to use in technology class. 





Please remind your students to RETURN all headphones that they borrow from the pocket chart behind the computer lab door. I have restocked the pocket chart with 11 pairs of headphones to borrow. 





Online Software Request Form: It was brought to our attention that the software request form was not working. We worked with the web company and have resolved the issue. When you submit a request for a new software title, you should see the message below. 


Thank you for letting us know that there was a technical issue with the form. If you need assistance in filling out the form or have questions, just let me know.

Friday, November 3, 2017

Post # 6: FasttMath, Instructional Tools Policy, Tumblebooks,




Wishing everyone a wonderful weekend. Please let me know if you have any questions!
is ready for student use. We use a locally installed version of FasttMath, where the data is saved on our own WPS server. 


Student Login:
Username: Student ID
Password: Student ID
Teacher:
Username: Firstname_Lastname
Password: Wayland21

Instructional Tools Policy: Please review the Instructional Tools Policy page. An area that I want to make sure you understand is the online tools that require parent permission. If a title says "Active" (approved) but says "Legal Drafted Guardian Release" - this means the company declined to sign our SDP. If you wish to use a title that has Legal Drafted Guardian Release, then you must follow the procedures below:


1) Request a copy of the release from your building’s Tech Specialist.
2) Send an email to parents with embedded links to the release form and links to the website/tool’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. (I have a sample letter for you to follow.)
3) Send home a paper copy for parents to sign and return to school.  
4) Collect the signed forms. Once you have 100% compliance, scan the forms with a class list as a PDF file and email it to Leisha Simon.



Each month Tumblebooks announces new books to their collection. Here are the newest EBooks.



Did you know that several of Peter H. Reynolds books are on Tumblebooks? 
"The North Star" (NEW)
"So Few Of Me"! (NEW)
Ish
Rose's Garden
The Dot


Use the search tool (upper right hand corner) to search by author, title, subject...








Thursday, October 19, 2017

Post #5: Code.org, Flash Update, Online Tools Update, Subscription Renewals





Things seems to be running pretty smoothly with technology at HH. This year, Joe will provide support on Monday and Thursday mornings. Below are a few updates that I wanted to make sure you were aware of. Please do not hesitate to reach out with any questions or concerns. Have a wonderful weekend.



Code.org declined to sign our Student Data Privacy Agreement. As a district, we have determined that a sufficient curriculum alternative cannot be found. Therefore, I will need to get signed parent permission slips before using Code.org with students this year. I am in the process of organizing this information and will send it home to families by the end of the month. I will keep you in the loop along the way. Please do not have students use this resource until I have acquired signed permission slips.


Flash Update: A new version of Flash came out this week. Joe has pushed it out to all student computers in the building. However, it could take a couple of days for each machine to get it. Hopefully by the time you read this, all machines will be updated. This update is necessary to support many of the websites we use that require the flash plugin.


Online Tools Update: The following online accounts are ready for use:

AMC Anywhere


Student Login:
Username: Firstname_Lastname
Password: Student ID


Student Login:
Username: wpsStudentID, example: wps1234
Password: Student ID

Subscription Renewals: There are several online subscriptions coming up for renewal - BrainPop/BrainPop Jr, CultureGrams, More Starfall and TumbleBooks/TumbleCloud Jr. Before renewing, I always like to get your feedback. Please provide your feedback on this google form before Monday, October 30th.

Friday, September 29, 2017

Post #4: Browsers, Classroom Equipment, Software Subscriptions, Tech Support







Several updates below. Please let me know if you have any questions. Enjoy your weekend!





Browser Trouble? I know that many of us have been using Google Chrome for most of our online work. However, Google Chrome has stopped supporting a browser plugin called "Adobe Flash"
Many websites require adobe flash in order to display and/or run. If you ever encounter a website that doesn't work because of an Adobe Flash error, select a different browser. Using Safari and/or Firefox usually fixes the problem.  Sometimes when using Google Chrome and a website requires "Flash" you will be prompted to "allow" or "run this time". Click allow or run this time to use the website without switching to a different browser.

List of websites to use with Safari or FireFox:
 **I'm sure there are others**

  • All The Right Type
  • PBS Kids
  • Track My Progress

Classroom Equipment: I have seen a lot of students eating and drinking while using their laptops. Please set up classroom practices that support LARK - Responsible in LARK reminds students to take care of and respect all computer equipment. Thank you for helping to support this practice.

Software Subscription UpdateI think you are all aware, but just wanted to make sure that you knew the following titles are ready for use:

Lexia
Lexia Rapid
Raz-Kids
Symphony Math
Track My Progress

Eva is working diligently on the remaining titles! Please continue to hold off on using titles until you are notified that they are ready. Thank you for your patience. 

Tech Support: If you need tech support, please fill out a WPS Help Desk ticket system which can be found under "For Staff". Here are the steps to submit a ticket: 

  • Link under For Staff - WPS Help Desk 
  • Fill in ALL of the fields (your email, issue category, asset tag number, room #, building, summary, and description of issue) as shown in the image below. 




Once a ticket is submitted, you will get email responses along the way to keep you updated on the process of your request. For example - that your ticket has been opened, that your ticket was assigned to someone, that your ticket has been closed... This process has been wonderful in facilitating and communicating help issues. 





Thursday, September 14, 2017

Post #3: eSchoolPLUS, Google App Launcher, Printers, Student/Teacher Account Information, Subscription Update





Wishing you a wonderful weekend. Please let me know if you have any questions.






eSchoolPlus - **From Leisha Simon - Below is the new link to Teacher Access Center in eSchoolPLUS. I've updated the link under "FOR STAFF". Feel free to bookmark the link below for easy access.

Google App Launcher  You can now personalize the order of the app icons in the google app launcher. Simply drag and drop the apps to reorder.



Printers:


  • The parts for the lab color printer have been installed. The print quality seems to be much better and the color streaks are gone. 
  • The printer labeled "outside guidance" is very low on toner. Toner has been ordered and may arrive as early as today (Friday). 


Student and Teacher Account Information: I have updated the student and teacher username and password google docs. There are a few usernames and passwords that I'm still looking into. Please let me know if I have missed a title.

Software Subscription Update: The following titles are ready for student use:

Lexia (K-5)
Raz-Kids (K-3)

Friday, September 8, 2017

Post #2: Enchanted Learning, Google Classroom, Lab Color Printer, Online Curriculum Tools, Tech Support





Hope everyone had a great first week! Please let me know if you have any technology issues or questions.





Enchanted Learning - I'm wondering if you'd like me to continue with our school subscription to Enchanted Learning. The subscription is $125.00 per year. I have the funds but wanted to make sure that we still find this resource valuable. Please take a second to respond via doodle poll.

Google Classroom - New Features 2017 (short video below showing these new features)
  • Reorder your classes on the home page (drag and drop)
  • View all of a student's work on a single page
  • Use decimal points when grading assignments
  • Display the class code in full-screen
  • Transfer class ownership to another classroom


Lab Color Printer - Parts are being ordered for the lab color printer which should fix the quality of the printing.

Online Curriculum Tools - As of this morning, our online curriculum titles are not ready for student use (Lexia, Symphony Math, SplashMath...). Please do not have students login to any titles until you hear from the Tech Department. Thank you for your patience regarding this unexpected delay.

Tech Support: We are continuing to use the online tech support system we rolled out last year - WPS Help Desk ticket system from SpiceWorks. Here are the steps to submit a ticket: 

  • Link under For Staff - WPS Help Desk 
  • Fill in the fields (your email, issue category, asset tag number, room #, building, summary, and description of issue) as shown in the image below. 





Once a ticket is submitted, you will get email responses along the way to keep you updated on the process of your request. For example - that your ticket has been opened, that your ticket was assigned to someone, that your ticket has been closed... This process has been wonderful in facilitating and communicating help issues. 



Monday, September 4, 2017

Post #1: Classroom Devices, eSchoolPLUS, Lab Sign-Ups, Software Subscriptions







Hope everyone has a great start to the school year. Here are a few technology updates:


Classroom Devices: 
  • iPad/Laptop Carts: Please be sure to plug in your carts and make sure the devices are charging.
  • Document Camera: Joe popped into all classrooms on Thursday so you should be all set. If anything was missed, please let me know.

Device Care: It's important to set up routines for taking care of your classroom carts - returning devices to the cart, logging off when done, plugging them in for charging, cleaning... Please let me know if you need any assistance in this manner.

eSchool Plus - Teacher Access Center - As we move forward with our new Student Information System, eSchoolPLUS, we want to make sure that everyone can login. If you haven't already done so, please follow the directions below. If you have any trouble with logging in, please contact Eva Santos. 

1) Click this link and book mark it:  Teacher Access Center (TAC) 

2) LOGIN Credentials (wyl logs you into our database):

ID:                  wylfirstname_lastname
Password:    SIS@Wayland17

3) Remember to change your password and log out!! (Menu below is at top right of eSchoolPLUS window).

Lab Sign-ups: If you'd like a permanently weekly lab time for project or skills practice (Lexia, Symphony, ATRT...), please send me a quick email with your time and lab preferences. FYI - 1st and 2nd Grade Reading RTI blocks have already been booked for the year in the hallway lab. You can access the lab calendars 

This is a quick screen capture of the current lab schedules:

Main Lab -


Hallway Lab


Online Software Subscriptions: Eva is diligently working on getting our online subscriptions ready (Lexia, Symphony Math..). Karyn and Tricia are prioritizing our needs. For now, please do not let your students login to our online subscriptions. I will keep you informed as I learn more.


Thursday, June 15, 2017

Post #35 - End of Year Tech, eSchool PLUS




Several important pieces of information to review before we break for summer. 

Thank you in advance for the return and cleaning of equipment. Please let me know if you have any questions about the information below. 


Wishing you all a wonderful last week of school and summer!! 




End of Year Tech Procedure - Details regarding end of year technology procedures can be found here. Lots of information so please read carefully. A few important dates to note:
  • Tuesday, June 20th @ 3:30: 
    • All classroom laptop/ipad carts need to be returned to the computer lab by the end of the day. (Cleaned and organized)
    • Hallway lab closes at the end of the school day.
  • Wednesday, June 21st @ 3:00: All TA laptops along with chargers need to be returned to the computer lab.
  • All WTA staff must complete the summer Checkout Form so we know if you will be taking your laptop and iPad home for the summer. (Link is also on the End of Year Tech Procedures page.)

IMPORTANT EMAIL FROM EVA REGARDING OUR NEW STUDENT INFORMATION SYSTEM THAT WE WILL BE USING AT THE START OF THE SCHOOL YEAR.

Dear iPASS Users,

We are looking forward to our move to the new Student Information System, eSchoolPLUS. This will be a great teacher resource for family communication regarding attendance, progress reports and report cards.

To verify all staff accounts are working correctly, we need you to test your login before you leave for Summer break. We appreciate your attention to this request at this very busy time of year!

1) Click this link and book mark it:  Teacher Access Center (TAC) 

2) LOGIN Credentials (wyl logs you into our database):

ID:                  wylfirstname_lastname
Password:    SIS@Wayland17

3) Remember to change your password and log out!! (Menu below is at top right of eSchoolPLUS window).

​Please reply if you have any issues, questions or concerns.

Thanks, 
Eva


Friday, June 9, 2017

Post #34 - Splash Math, Teacher Laptops,




A couple of quick items - nothing new. Please let me know if you have any questions. Wishing everyone a relaxing weekend. 




Splash Math Feedback: Last call for Splash Math feedback. Please complete the survey by Monday, June 12th. Your feedback will help guide our software subscription allocation for the 2017-18 school year. Thank you in advance for your time and feedback as I know this is a very busy time of year.



Teacher Laptop Updates: Please check the teacher laptop signup sheet so you know when you signed up to have your laptop updated. Make sure you back up your local files to the network!! Thank you for your help with this.


Your laptops are being updated to Mac OS Sierra. Take a tour of Sierra here


Friday, June 2, 2017

Post #33 Splash Math, Teacher Laptop Updates,








Splash Math Feedback: If you haven't already shared your feedback about Splash Math, please complete the survey by Monday, June 5th. Your feedback will help guide our software subscription allocation for the 2017-18 school year. Thank you in advance for your time and feedback.

Teacher Laptop Updates: Joe needs to update all teacher MacBook Air laptops to the new operating system (OS). Please sign up on this google doc for a time when you can be without your laptop for a couple of hours. Thank you for your help with this.


Friday, May 26, 2017

Post #32: MCAS, Splash Math Feedback, Student Laptops




Wishing everyone a wonderful Memorial Day weekend!

Please let me know if you have any questions.




MCAS: Woohoo! We are just about all finished! Thank you to Jen for organizing everything so well and to the staff as we worked out a few technical difficulties. I think all in all everything went pretty well. Until next time...

Splash Math Feedback: We are looking for your feedback regarding our pilot of Splash Math. Specifically how has the subscription benefited you and your students in supporting your grade level's mathematics standards. We are in the process of ordering for next year. Your feedback will help guide our software subscription allocation for the 2017-18 school year.

Please complete the survey by Monday, June 5th. Thank you for your time and feedback.

Student Laptops: In case you were wondering, here is the plan for 3rd-5th grade student laptops for next year. All macbooks in those grades will be retired!! (All white macbooks = gone!) These will be replaced with new Chromebooks. The current 4th grade chromebooks are leased and will be returned to the vendor. They will be replaced with new Chromebooks. We are hoping to also purchase new storage carts for grades 4 and 5. 

Friday, May 19, 2017

Post #31: Projectors, Software Updates, Tech Committee




Wishing everyone a wonderful weekend! Hope you all have a chance to ...



Projectors: Reminder with the heat - please TURN OFF your projectors when they are not in use. This time of year, the heat causes many projectors to overheat. 




Software Updates for Teacher Laptops: There are two ways to access updates for teacher laptops. Security updates get pushed out and software updates say for MS Office, Skype... are accessed through Self-Service.

Below are links to directions on how both processes work.

Self-Service Directions (Must be done at school) - There is an update for MS Office so you can test out the directions and try to update office on your teacher laptop.

Directions on how to install updates that are pushed out to teacher laptops - hopefully you have all installed the one that Joe sent out earlier in the week.

Technology Committee: The Tech Committee met yesterday. We had a productive meeting on a variety of topics. The notes from our meeting can be found here

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Post #30 - Google Sites, Lexia Reports, Report Cards, Summer PD Courses,







Google Sites - Back in the fall, Google released a newer version of Google Sites. You currently have access to the new Google Sites and what they are calling the classic version. At some point in time, you will need to migrate your classic site into the new google sites. Google will be providing a migration tool to assist with that process (coming towards the end of 2017). I tell you this so that if you plan on creating a new Google Site (say for next year), you should use the newer version and not the classic. 

If you are looking for help with the new google sites. Check out google sites help link. Here is a brief intro to the new Google Sites followed by a short how to get started video tutorial. 






Lexia Reports - Back in December, Lexia previewed a new reports section featuring: 
  • a new, more intuitive and engaging layout
  • the ability to mark lessons, skill builders and certificates as delivered
  • new progress reports for district and school leaders
The preview of these new reports went over very well. Therefore these new reports will become the default reports in MyLexia at the beginning of the 2017-18 school year. Lexia will begin to phase out the original reports. 

If you haven't seen the reports already, you may do so by logging into MyLexia. For complete information about the new reports, here is a guide to the new reports

Report Cards - Just a reminder that Term 2 is open in iPass for reporting. Here is the iPass Quick Start Progress Report guide.




The Education Cooperative (TEC) is offering a variety of summer courses - many with graduate credit. Take a peek if you are interested!