Friday, March 23, 2018

GET Dave Eisenmann to Your School:)!!!

Yesterday, we had Dave Eisenmann, a technology director and speaker from Minnetonka come to our school and talk to our 7-12 graders about technology, being safe and smart online, and leaving a positive digital print.  HE WAS FABULOUS!  He didn't lecture the kids, he didn't tell them they are doing dumb things and stop.  He encouraged them to continue to use the technology for positive things and outcomes.

He started out by explaining to kids that technology is like a game or slot machine; it has the addiction piece to it, which makes it hard to stop using and put it down.  We have to make a conscious effort to be present where we are, and put away the technology once in a while.

He further went on to remind the kids of the changes that are taking place and that technology is the way everything is and pretty much how everything works.  It was neat because he used polls throughout the presentation for kids to answer, and I think they were surprised by what they saw.  He asked them about the amount of time spent on technology, if they are jealous when others post things and they aren't included in it, and how their "digital" footprint is.  Here are a few of "our" statistics.

His last comments were about bullying and cyberbullying and the differences between them.  He ended by showing kids that Burger King Commercial made about bullying.  Check it out if you haven't seen it - it's pretty powerful!!!  In closing and review of his speech,  he reminded kids to
1. Find a healthy balance 2. Have clean screens 3. Positive digital footprint and 4. Use it to build others up

Dave also mentioned an app called Moment that you can install for free and it tracks your time and what you are doing on your phone.  I installed it and it's interesting to see where you might need to make improvements.
Dave went to speak at a church later that night in Fargo, and was going to talk to parents and students about a variety of things, but mostly including Raising Tech Healthy Kids.  Use the link for some great advice and resources for you as parents!!

I would HIGHLY recommend him!  We have NEVER had someone come and talk to our student body about this and IT WAS NEEDED!  Some kids rolled their eyes, yes, but many kids really enjoyed it as it served as a reminder to them of what they are doing and how their digital footprint is never really lost, so make it a positive one!  He won't be our last person to talk to our kids about this - I KNOW they hear it from parents, and if they aren't THEY SHOULD BE, but every person that talks to them hopefully helps in this "raising of our tribes" to help them grow into amazing peeps making good choices along the way:)!!!

Happy Weekend all,
Mrs. I:)

Friday, March 9, 2018

A few new sites.......

I had my monthly tech integration session at Lakes Country in Fergus yesterday and learned about a few new sites:)!!  They are ones I haven't seen so I thought I might share:

1. Dollar Street: This site is a compilation of photos take from different countries at different socioeconomic levels.  You will notice that there's a slider going from left (poorest) to right (richest).  You can choose "what" you would want to see, and it will filter out and show you based on monthly income.  This was an EYE OPENER!!  What a great way to "show" kids what they have and what others do or don't as well.

2. Classroom Screen: I know at first this one seems like, "Why would I use that?"  BUT, after playing with it for a while I REALLY like it and find that I would constantly have it on my screen in my room while the kids were working independently!!  You can have a timer, use a random name chooser, show the clock, have a stop light, sound level, etc.. it's pretty fun!! 

Not a TON for today - but some gems:)!
Happy Weekend all,
Mrs. I:)

Thursday, March 1, 2018

Apps Gone Free............

I have totally forgotten about this website until TODAY - so I hope you are STILL USING IT!  DO NOT forget about Apps Gone Free!  This website lists apps daily that are free for a limited time.  This is a great way to get apps and check out particular ones before you think they might be worth purchasing, OR to just get for free for your personal devices - remember to check it daily - as clearly I haven't in a while;)!

Happy Thursday all,
Mrs I:)

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Some New GREAT Sites and Apps.............

I have just been digging around again and have found the following to be pretty cool:

1. Coggle - This a pretty cool site to use for mind mapping and brainstorming.  Students can create their own "coggle" or they can use ones already created there for studying purposes.  IT IS COOL!  They can also share it with someone, similar to a Google Doc and work collaboratively with it - LOVE THIS:)!!!

2.  Green Screen by Do Ink: Our Kindergarten teachers have been LOVING ON this app ALL YEAR LONG!  They have a few areas in their classrooms painted green, for their screen, and then take photos of kiddos by that.  They are then able to insert just about ANY background onto the back - they have taken field trips, written about jobs they wish to have, and even shared Olympic themes for Olympic Day.  CHECK THIS ONE OUT - it's $2.99, but would be worth to put on student iPads as the creativity they would have would be amazing.  Really, you could hang green paper, green table cloths, green fabric, etc in common areas for kids to access the use of it - pretty neat:)

3. AnswerGarden: This is a great tool to use for online brainstorming and coming up with ideas as a group.  The answers are then compiled to create a cloud of words with the answers. You can also create a QR code, which is embedded in there, to use for scanning and directly having access to the question and site.  It is pretty cool:)!

4. Flipgrid:  This website allows students to post responses to your questions, topics, or discussions in short video clips and share them on grids.  Students can then watch one another's clips and respond.  You can use their responses in assessments or use them for collaborative purposes.  Create your own of use already created and uploaded ones - check it out!

That's all I have for today - have to get working on social studies curriculum - take care and happy Tuesday all!
Mrs. I:)

Thursday, February 8, 2018

The Countdown Continues.......

Just received this from our Tech Coordinator, Casey:

We are 2 days from the one year anniversary of the ransom virus that hit us. Since then we've been running pretty smooth. Our firewall and virus programs have caught quite a few things, but so far none have got by and done any damage.

On that note, everyone has done a great job of being aware of emails and attachments etc. Please keep being attentive and contacting me if things just don't seem right. There's been some emails coming in with attached pdf files, that look legit but were not sent from these people. As of know it looks like things are still safe, but just remember if you weren't expecting anything from somebody always error on the safe side. You can call that person or call me just to make sure. Things can flip instantly when dealing with all these attacks.


Happy Thursday All,
Mrs. I:)

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Getting a Little Nervous.........

SO we are FOUR DAYS AWAY from the ONE YEAR Anniversary of the Ransom virus hitting us - YIKES!!!  Now, things have been running really GREAT, and we have been having NO problems - BUT our system now is also "catching" a TON more than we have in the past, so with that known, Casey reminded me that last year at this time in fours days IT HIT!!!!

NOW, I know that we can't prevent everything, and if something happens, something happens.  BUT, I also know the amount of stress, time and worry that Casey especially had to go through so that makes me a little on edge.

Knowing this, we have done everything possible to try and prevent viruses from hitting our computers - just HOPING that everyone has backed up their computers into Google Drive or an external hard drive - this is SO SO important!  If ANYTHING else can be taken from what our experiences was a year ago - BACK UP YOUR FILES AND PHOTOS!!!!

Happy Tuesday all -
Mrs. I:)

Monday, January 8, 2018

Laser Cutter Did This;)

Mr. Suter, our vocational/Tech Ed teacher here in Barnesville, has a laser cutter that he teaches the kiddos to use through the CAD class that he offers here.  Basically, the kids come up with a design and then cut it out onto a material - wood, plastic or glass being the most common.  WELL - Mr. Suter one day decided to cut THIS guy out - each individual puzzle piece had to be snapped together - BUT - he simply used CARDBOARD = FREE:)!!!!  We also DO have a 3D printer in there, that the kids learn about and use, but he was trying to come up with a way for the kids to cut stuff 3D but not use all the plastic that is required with our printer.  I think they are SO SO cool;)!  He is going to have the kids make them soon as well - so when they are done, I will snap a few pics and upload here!

Happy Monday all - take care
Mrs. I:)