In October's Digital Citizenship newsletter we sent to all parents, we included information about Podcasts. We wanted to take a moment to share some possible podcasts that you may find interesting.
  • TED Talks Education - Some of the world's greatest educators, researchers, and community leaders share their stories and visions.
  • 10 Minute Teacher Podcast - Each weekday this podcast provides a 10 minute opportunity to learn something new.
  • Cardinal Coaching Conversations with our very own instructional coach Jen Harris.
  • The House of #EdTech - This podcast explores how technology is changing the way teachers teach and the impact that technology is having in education.
  • Teaching Keating - The hosts use iconic teaching moments from movies and television as a vehicle to reflect on instructional practice. Be prepared to be entertained!
Twenty-five years ago, SMART Board technology was introduced as computers were just beginning to make a strong presence in our classrooms. The SMART Board allowed us to take a single computer in each of our classrooms and make it interactive for all of our students. Five years ago, our district began moving towards a 1:1 device roll-out. We have successfully integrated iPads, Chromebooks and MacBooks into our daily instruction. As our SMART Boards have begun to fail over these last 2-3 years, our district has made a decision to not replace them. We certainly recognize that many of our teachers have built many Notebook files to support their classroom instruction. We have provided alternatives to transition away from the use of SMART Board technology which includes the following:
  • Professional learning around Google, MacBooks, iPads, and different Learning Management Systems. Each student now has their own interactive device (iPad, Chromebook or MacBook) that they can use in our classrooms.
  • The district purchased an additional 3 year license for teachers to use Notebook software (2019-2022). Currently, 42 teachers are using this SMART Notebook license.
  • The district also purchased AirServer that allows you to mirror your iPad through your MacBook. This gives the teacher the ability to move around the classroom and not be stuck at the SMART Board. We currently have 208 teachers who have Air Server on their district issued MacBook.
  • Another option is to take your Notebook files and transfer them to PDFs or Google Slides. Adam Dugas (current 2nd grade teacher at Lake) created this short video to help with this process. Convert Smart Notebook files
We will continue to support all of our teachers as we transition from this technology.
Amanda Hyla from Shore MS and Jessica Sines from Memorial MS
Mrs. Hyla and Mrs. Sines take advantage of technology to support student learning in their classrooms. Walking into both of their classes, students know exactly what they will be working on by the clear agenda that they display using Google Slides. Both teachers also do an excellent job taking advantage of Schoology, our Learning Management System. Students have access to a wealth of resources in their Schoology classes and the organization of content makes it easy for students to always have the materials they need to be successful.
Mrs. Sines and Mrs. Hyla have also found some very useful ways to use APEX Tutorials. One of the best ways both teachers have found to use APEX is to frontload the students with the information needed before teaching the content in class. In APEX, there are four main sections: Learn It, Try It, Review It and Test It. Mrs. Sines likes to have students progress through all four categories and has the students complete a Guided Notes for the Learn It section to add even more value. She finds the APEX content to be very thorough in how the material is presented and also finds the content presented in an engaging way.
Mrs. Hyla loves to use the videos incorporated into the APEX Tutorials. She finds these videos are a great way to grab the students attention at the beginning of a lesson. She also likes how the quick check questions in the Learn It section are formatted similarly to the end of the year assessment.
The students in both of their classes have also enjoyed using APEX Tutorials. Many of them cited APEX Tutorials as their favorite technology program that they use in the middle school. They said they enjoyed the Learn It section because they can control the pace of the content they are learning. They also found the short video clips in the program engaging. 
Both teachers said they would be happy to meet with any teacher looking to explore APEX Tutorials. We recognize Mrs. Sines and Mrs. Hyla for doing an amazing job finding many different ways to take advantage of the technology that is available to them and their students!