BrHS Genius Bar – Yes. We. Can.

IMG_5325.JPGWelcome to Room 235 – otherwise known as the Genius Bar.  Many staff members and students didn’t realize we moved out of the library and into a cozy space located near the band room and outside the auditorium.

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The Genius Bar is staffed by Diego Diaz, Wes Keodara, John Zack, Stephen Gately, Ally Horvath, Bella Aguilar, Kushal Regmi, Phuc Tran and Zach Burpoe. 

Hours are all common lunches and 5th periods.

The Genius Bar can repair anything from a sticking key, damaged power source, broken screen or motherboard replacement.  Yes. We. Can.  Most repairs are free of charge, but broken screens will cost $45 paid in full and no loaner device provided.  So, next time you or one of your students needs assistance or have any questions, come on over and see us.  We are happy to help!

 

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Do we still have a Teacher Tech Team?

BrHS Staff:

  • As we are in our 4th year of 1:Web, the roles of the Teacher Tech Team (TTT) have changed from planning and deployment to addressing Chromebook challenges and providing effective teacher PD/support.
  • Last May, the idea of dismantling the TTT and assembling a BrHS Tech Team Cohort was evaluated by myself and Steve Kelly and ultimately presented to the TTT.  The purpose of the cohort would be to have one or two teacher representatives from each department committed to being 100% Google and share out new technology training learned at our meetings.  A series of Cohort Objectives was assembled and presented to each department via TTT representatives.
  • Interested teachers filled out an application and are members of the Cohort:  Jim Davidson, Paige Marchi, Odette Edbrooke, Tamra Miaja, Heather Peter, Garren Estes, Nathan Spencer, Carrie Thrasher, Alex Kelly, Paula Seifried, and Terry Oakley.
  • The longtime commitment of past TTT members and the future-focused thinking of our new Teacher Cohort will hopefully help the entire staff at BrHS and inevitably, our students facing and overcoming ever-changing technological hurdles whatever that may look like.
Check out these ISTE (International Society for Technology in Education) Educator Standards we can follow to empower ourselves and our students to transform learning in our classrooms!
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RDP is bringing Office back, yeah!

I know some of you will rejoice at this news – even though it’s just a workaround on our Chromebooks.  For others, this blog post is not for you, but I would like to introduce Chrome RDP to everyone.

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Chome RDP can be added to your CB so it can remotely access your desktop.  And what’s on your desktop? Microsoft Office!

Daily use of the CB may depend on your subject matter or preference of productivity platform.  Staff members are wary of using their *NEW* CB thinking all Microsoft products are lost – whether in creating or viewing files.  Chrome RDP can help.

Steps to getting Chrome RDP on your CB (this only works at school):

  1. Go to Google Web Store and search for Chrome RDP  as an App (not Chrome Remote Desktop).Screenshot 2018-09-27 at 7.50.19 PM
  2. Click on “Add to Chrome”.
    1. Launch the App by going through the Web Store OR click on the circle located at the left side of the bottom bar of your CB.Screenshot 2018-09-27 at 7.39.44 PM OR    Screenshot 2018-09-27 at 7.36.05 PM
  3. Enter the computer address:Screenshot 2018-09-27 at 7.36.41 PM
  4. After entering your own sign in information, you will find that the CB mirrors your desktop.  WHAT??!!!!  From there, you can click on Microsoft Office products, Single Sign-On, etc.  Whatever is on your desktop is now mirrored to your CB.  That’s right.  Try it!  Don’t freak out!  You just learned something new!

If you need any additional help or have questions, please feel free to contact me or Steve Kelly.  Enjoy your new “Chromoting” skills!

 

Chromebook Version 2.OHH!

 

The struggle is not a struggle anymore.  No sireeeeee.  Thanks to the hard work of the Teacher Tech Team, Ginger Ramsey, EdTech/1:WEB and our CIO, Andrew Moore, it was Christmas in September for Broomfield High School.

New Chromebooks were deployed to our staff earlier this week. Watch this video to check out the new features:

Screenshot 2018-09-20 at 1.22.10 PMYour new Chromebook VIDEO LINK HERE!

Maybe you are thinking about buying a cover for your new Chromebook.  Important information can be found on the bottom of your device which include both the model number and series.  When I looked on Amazon for a cover (and stylus!), I typed in “CB5-312T series chromebook cover”.  It’s being delivered tomorrow, so check out my device protection next week.  Later info on the stylus…..

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I hope you are as excited as I am to start using the new and improved Chromebook in the classroom.  We will be providing extra training and support through our Teacher Technology Cohort, PLC/PD time and this blog, of course!

Let me know if you have any questions.

Happy Chromebooking!

Final Exam Time – Curb the Cheating

Thanks to the work of one of our Teacher Tech Team members (and sibling), Steve Kelly, one way to curb the cheating that occurs while taking exams on Schoology or Classroom has been REVEALED!!!

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Now, if you don’t use Schoology……you may want to consider using it.  You can link your Google Form that you’re giving your exam on into Schoology and then, SHAZAM, you can’t cheat.  How does this happen, you ask?  Here are several steps to a cheat-free classroom.

1. The exam HAS to be taken on a student Chromebook or Chromebox.  Another reason to reinforce that all students should have a fully operating Chromebook which is brought to class.

2. The student should not be signed into their device (like CMAS).  If so, have them sign out.  Prompt them to the bottom left-hand corner of the screen.  You will see “Shut Down” and “Apps”.  Have the student choose “Apps” – the waffle looking icon.

3. Once “Apps” has been clicked on, have the student choose “BVSD Schoology Testing
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4. You will the following screen loading once “BVSD Schoology Testing” has been chosen.

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5. You will see the Single Sign-On Prompt screen.  Have the student login.

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6. Note: The upper left-hand corner of the screen.  EVERY student should have this on their screen.  There should be no tabs at the top of the display.

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7. The students can now access your exam whether it’s in your Schoology folder or linked to a Google Form from Schoology.  They are unable to open another tab as we know they are masters of opening and closing tabs faster than you can say “summer vacation”!

If you have any questions, please let Steve Kelly or myself know.  We’d be happy to help!

Good luck, Eagles!

No more exceptional PowerPoints or Excel Spreadsheets mangled by Google Slides & Sheets. Find the power of WOD!

Do you ever find it annoying that your only option to open up a PowerPoint is through Google Slides AND THEN it mangles all of your images, equations, and formatting? Or maybe you would still like to use Excel for your data, but Google Sheets doesn’t have exactly what you need? No more, Broomfield Nation!  You can do all of this on your Chromebook – say what?!!

Check out Windows on Demand through Chrome RDP.

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Let me break it down for you:

1. Install Chrome RDP.  Chrome RDP stands for Chrome Remote Desktop. 

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Follow the Screencast about how to install Chrome RDP.

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2. Install Windows on Demand.

Follow the Screencast about how Windows on Demand works!

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You can access your desktop just like you were in your own classroom, but remotely!

WOD is not limited to Word, PowerPoint, Excel, etc.

Chrome RDP/WOD has limited access only at school.  

Eagle Nation, don’t worry about your desktop not being replaced one day.  Chrome RDP and Windows on Demand can help you get around this hurdle!

If you have any questions or need one-on-one help, don’t hesitate to ask.  If you have other uses for Windows on Demand, comment on this blog post to help others.

BVSD IT Knowlege Base and Teacher Chromebook Help!

Help is Out There If You Need It!

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As Broomfield continues to use Chromebooks in the classroom, support is often needed. BVSD IT provides help for all things technology posted in their KnowledgeBase (KB).  The IT KnowledgeBase is described as “a collection of articles that helps you find solutions to technical problems and answers to IT questions.”

The KB contains information about:

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Most importantly, the KB contains a Chromebook folder with Teacher Chromebook FAQs and a Troubleshooting Guide:

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How to access BVSD IT Knowledge Base Articles:

The easiest way is to go to the bvsd.org home page and type “knowledge base” in the search box.

You can also use this link: IT Knowledge Base Google Drive

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Once you get there, you can go to the folder that best meets your needs.  I know we sometimes need help and hopefully, these resources are beneficial.  You can also ask a Teacher Tech Team member or come to our Student Genius Bar in the library!

 

 

 

 

 

 

So Many Virtual Realities + Phone = 1 Google Cardboard

What is Google Cardboard?Screen Shot 2018-03-20 at 7.34.08 PM

Google Cardboard uses a phone and viewer that is inexpensive,  between $10-30 online through Amazon or Google.  The use of the viewer and apps can let you experience virtual reality to visit places, museum spaces, play games and whatever else you can imagine – through your phone without leaving your classroom.

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Watch our BrHS Student Tech Team in action with Google Cardboard – it’s hilarious! I wish I would have caught their reaction right from the beginning.  Priceless.

Part 1 Link   Part 2 Link

 

Who has access to Google Cardboard viewers?  We all do as a staff!  You can check out a class set from our librarian, Jane Schissel.

How did we get 30 Google Cardboard viewers?  Stacy Harkness received a class set as part of her 1:Web Cohort and she graciously shared it with BrHS.  You can thank her later!

Useful links for ALL content areas:

Google Cardboard: everything you needed to know

10 Simple Ways to Use Google Cardboard in the Classroom

12 ways to use Google Cardboard in your Classroom

Mindblowing VR Videos

20 Top Virtual Reality Apps

5 Top Apps to Use with Google Cardboard

Great apps to use with your Google Cardboard:

YouVisit – virtual college tours

Nearpod – virtual field trips

Thinglink – virtual field trips/ecosystems

New York Times VR – visit places around the world

Discovery Channel VR – an app that has way cool stuff!

Miscellaneous Links by Content Area:

History

Art

Science

Math

LA

World Language

Results and Infographic from a Samsung backed survey:

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There are so many VR sites out there.  Google what you’re interested in and I’m sure you will feel the same way my Student Tech Team did after some investigation – it’s awesome!

BVSD Save$ has discounts galore…but forget Hamilton tickets.

With all the extra money you may save, you too can make it rain!

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This may be the least tech-y post you’re going to read about, but maybe this will get you to start reading our Teacher Tech Blog!

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One of our staff members talked about a link to a discount program if you are an employee of BVSD called “BVSD Save$” through Beneplace.com.  (Go to Employee, Benefits, BVSD Save$)

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At first, I was a bit skeptical thinking I may not find any deals of interest but I was wrong!  From big discounts on Garmin, Cubs (vs. Rockies) tickets and ski passes to concerts, Disney Vacations, All-inclusive Resorts and more!  FYI: There are no tickets for Hamilton available on this website. Boo.  In addition, discounts are not limited to the Denver-Boulder-Colorado area.  You can choose different cities to find deals if you are traveling.

 

Here are some other screenshots of deals that can be had through BVSD Save$:

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The pictures shown represent a VERY SMALL part of the discounts listed.  In review, logging into BVSD Save$ to check out all of the deals may be worth the time and money.  Happy saving and happy shopping!

The Love-Hate Relationship of Continuing Ed Classes – MOOCs for ALL!

Doing the Right Thing for Our Students!

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After earning my Master’s degree, I wanted nothing to do with taking more classes…..unless that meant moving up on the pay scale.  Maxed out at Master’s +60 hours later, I still want nothing to do with taking more classes for recertification…..in the traditional way.

Recently, I’ve enrolled in a MOOC at Stanford University.  A MOOC is a “Massive Open Online Course”.  The acronym can be summarized below:

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MOOCs provide access to free, online courses from many outstanding institutions such as Harvard, Yale and even the University of Illinois!

Screen Shot 2018-03-08 at 7.49.04 PMIf you have an internet connection, you can enroll in a MOOC.  The basic features of a MOOC include a video component, reading materials, integrated activities, course-specific forums, sectional or weekly organization, sectional test or project, and a final exam or project.

MOOCs can even benefit our own high school students.  They could enroll in a course and determine if that career path is the right decision for them before spending money on costly tuition. According to the article in Reviews.com, there are several ways high school teachers can use MOOCs in their classroom:

  1. Extra Credit
  2. Supplemental Course Material
  3. Optional Preparation for College or Exams

A MOOC is not equivalent to a college degree but provides access to just as many courses if not thousands more.  Below are the category list and the top MOOC platforms of 2018 according to Reviews.com.

Brilliant!  So, if you’d like more information on MOOCs, check out the link to Reviews.com that explains and evaluates the best MOOCs of 2018.  It’s worth the time to peruse the course catalog whether or not it’s for yourself or your students!

Happy learning!