Showing posts from 2017

Tech Integration Highlights Q4 2016-17

The 2016-17 school year was our first year of full 1:1 Chromebook access for all Roaring Fork Schools students in 4th-12th grade, and by all measures, it was a success. Engaging students in authentic uses of current tech tools is an essential step toward accomplishing our mission to 'ensure that every student develops the enduring knowledge, skills and character to thrive in a changing world.'

Here are a few key statistics, followed by some great examples of how teachers have creatively integrated technology into their instruction leading to innovative student products.

2016-2017 school year by the numbers:5,124: Student Chromebooks deployed  
866,983: Student and teacher visits to Schoology 
1650: Students created original videos using WeVideo
5866: Student papers submitted via Turnitin
Quarter 4 Tech Integration Highlights:1. Cutting-edge learning in technology classes Stacey Maule engaged students in collaboration, problem solving, and math through 3D design and printing in h…

Supercharge Students' Slideshows

Student presentations supported by Google Slides can be a good way for students to learn by teaching, but they can also be pretty boring for the student audience. Here are a few tips to increase engagement and mastery of learning outcomes for all students involved in class presentations.

Tip #1: Create an authentic reason, aligned to an essential question, for students to engage with their peers' presentations This is the single most-important factor in making student presentations a valuable learning activity for the whole class. Students should have a specific purpose that makes them actually need to listen closely, ask questions, and interact with their classmates' presentations. This should be more than a feedback form: students should be actively engaged in each others' presentations because they're learning critical information that will help them answer the essential question. This structure also gives presenters an authentic purpose: they're providing esse…

Tech Integration Highlights: Q3 of 2016-2017

This Quarter's highlights feature teachers using three core tech tools that all teachers and students have access to. These tools are easy to use, your accounts are already created, and you can start using them today. Watch the videos below to see how our innovative teachers are using these tools for differentiation, engagement, feedback, and collaboration. Email me for help getting started with any of these or other tech tools in your classroom!

Highlight #1: Differentiated Supports to Help Students Access Complex Texts Sara Porter and Liz Hazle
Carbondale Middle School Sara and Liz have empowered their students with the Read&Write for Chrome extension, enabling students to use text-to-speech, highlighting, and other tools to access on-screen readings that they would otherwise not be able to read. They started using this tool with students with reading disabilities, but found that all students can benefit from the accessibility and interactive features of Read&Write for …

Read&Write for Chrome

One of the greatest promises of educational technology is its potential to help all students access rigorous content. And one of the big challenges of on-screen reading is having the tools to interact with the text as richly as you can with print. We now have a tool that addresses both of these needs and much more.
Do you have students who need:
Text to speech support (so the computer reads any webpage or document to them)?Word prediction (helping reluctant writers finish their words)?Translation?Annotation and highlighting tools for PDF's and websites?A picture dictionary they can use on any website?If so, you're in luck! We recently installed the Read&Write for Chrome extension on all students' accounts, making all of these tools available to all our students. You and your students can use this extension to highlight, annotate, translate, and enable text-to-speech and speech-to-text tools on websites, PDF's, and Google Docs. 

Students can get started by clicking t…

Tech Integration Highlights: Quarter 2 of 2016-2017

Teachers across Roaring Fork Schools continued to implement technology into their instruction in innovative ways in the second quarter of the year, and here are three highlights to show what's possible and inspire others to try new things. What can you do with technology that you couldn't do before we were 1:1? Here are some great examples. Email Ben with innovative examples from your school or for support getting started with any of these tools.

Highlight #1: Interdisciplinary 3D Design and Printing in Middle School Ryan Allen and Avis Paul
7th-8th Grade, Basalt Middle School This is a great example of what's possible in a 1:1 school: a social studies teacher and technology teacher teamed up to engage students in a 3D design and printing project based on social studies content. Ryan Allen is able to teach more advanced and cutting-edge technology skills in his computer class because students now use basic computer programs in other classes. Watch this video to see the ex…

Help Students Stay Focused Online

Photo: Michael Dales on Flickr
As you wrap up the semester with final assessments, projects, and focused online activities, here are a few tips to help ensure that students are using their Chromebooks in the most productive ways. You'll still need to employ good classroom management strategies like circulation and proximity, in concert with these tools to help students focus on learning.

IF..THEN...Students are taking a test or completing an assignment in Schoology, and you don't want them to browse the web, take screenshots, or open other tabs.Use the RFSD Schoology Kiosk App. This is a 'lock down browser' app that limits students to the Schoology website for a session until they shut down and restart their Chromebooks. Students can access the app from their Chromebook login screen under Apps, before logging in as usual. Details here.Students are working in Google Docs or other non-Schoology sites, but you want to reduce distractions and monitor students' web activ…