With summer quickly approaching, check out these 10 awesome summer learning opportunities from Ed Tech!
1. Become a Podcaster
Podcasting is such a great way to empower students to use their voice to express their ideas and connect with others. Episodes can range from storytelling, interviews, passion projects, to reflection pieces. Check out this link to get started today!
2. Document Your Summer with Photos
Click click! Have students create a digital photo album sharing summer hobbies, that can easily be shared with grandma, family, friends and neighbors alike! Check out this link for more!
3. Create a Comic or Graphic Novel
Ever wanted to write a graphic novel? Choose between these various templates and ideas in Book Creator. The sky is the limit with topics, ideas, and design. Get started with this link
4. Create Your Own Song
Bring the studio to your fingertips with Soundtrap! Learn how to create beats, melodies and more by accessing a keyboard, bass or synthesizer in just a few clicks. All creations can be exported as an mp3 file to share with others. Find out more, here!
5. Take a Virtual Field Trip
So many National Parks, so little time! Get a free, front-row seat to the best views in the country with Google Arts & Culture. Simply visit the link here to search for private tour-like experiences offering breath-taking images and fun facts on the most desired travel destinations around. Buckle up!
6. Learn to Code
Code anything from a dance party to an encrypted message in as little as an hour! This link offers thousands of project ideas to keep minds busy and thinking critically!
7. Create Your Own Music Video
Have a favorite summer song you just can't get enough of? Why not embrace it and make it your own by becoming a video editing expert? Choose from hundreds of stock images, audio, video clips and transitions in WeVideo. This link will leave you buzzing with more ideas than you can contain. Happy editing!
8. Play Screen-Free Bingo
Take a break from the screen with these fun and creative activity ideas for all ages. This pdf link offers simple, print-out-ready ideas to pack in positivity and productivity. Bragging rights included for the winner!
9. Design a Passion Project Using Google Sites
Ever envision becoming a website designer? Take this opportunity to teach others all about a topic or hobby by trying your hand with various website layouts and features. Using this simple, drag and drop site maker with Google, you can instantly look like a professional website designer all with the click of a few buttons and a creative thinking hat! Click here to get started.
Join the world's largest treasure hunt! If you like clues, teamwork, and adventure, geocaching is for you. Follow a series of GPS-located goodies that are left by other enthusiasts like you! Just be sure to be safe, and wear sunscreen before hitting the pavement. Find out more here.
Ed Tech Summer Engagment Resources
Great sessions by teachers, for teachers!
Get Your Tech On returns this summer to re-inspire Jeffco educators with ways to get students collaborating, communicating, creating and thinking critically around implementing digital tools and 1:1 devices.
This is a FREE event for Jeffco educators. Licensed educators not being paid to work June 1st will receive add pay for their attendance at this event! Additionally, all attendees will receive a copy of Holly Clark's Chromebook Infused Classroom! Be sure to register in ESS using code ETGYTO, 0003.
Take a sneak peek below at a few of the awesome sessions being taught by Jeffco educators and leaders. And check out the posted schedule on the Get Your Tech On Website to get a full listing* of offered sessions. You will not want to miss this event!
*Schedule is subject to change
Tech and STEM spotlight
Presenters Deanna, Megan, Katherine and Mallory will all be sharing different ways to integrate awesome STEM ideas into your instructional practices. Check out their session to get STEM inspired!
Computer Science SpotLight
These sessions will inspire creativity, challenge you to learn a new tool and get those creative juices flowing. Check out how a seasoned teacher with an aversion to technology went from hands-off to all hands on learning with technology and robotics! You might also choose to choose to explore a computer science session that cultivated problem solver skills. What do you do when code doesn't work? How do you create a storyboard and then code that story? What do you do when your code or device doesn't work? You problem solve! You are going to love these sessions!
Getting the most out of your Mimio Board
If you have a Mimio board or are getting one these sessions will be filled with how to's and resources to support you as you get up and running or want to take a deeper dive into all the bells and whistles Mimio has to offer.
Innovative classroom Sessions
These presenters are bringing their teacher toolboxes filled with resources, ideas, best practices and more! Check out these sessions for innovative ways to meet the needs to students and teacher learning!
Gettin Googlie sessions
One size doesn't fit all in education. Find ways to support students with resources, tips and tricks on how to include them in learning by meeting them where they are at. Technology allows students to access content in a variety of ways as well as how to show their learning.
Join these presenters to leverage the use of all things Google!
On April 19th, Drake Middle School overflowed with students and parents coming to showcase what they can do with robots, including Dash, Sphero, and VEX. Check out this week's blog featuring guest bloggers Kyle Walker and Harmony Jones. Kyle is the DTL at Kullerstrand and Maple Grove. Harmony is the robotics teacher at Drake Middle School.
At Drake Middle School, a group of people gathered to celebrate a post-pandemic year of robotics in Jeffco. The turnout was way beyond what was expected, revealing a passion that is still very much alive in our schools.
The VEX IQ robotics program in particular had built up considerable momentum over four years with at least a dozen schools participating in tournaments. But then the pandemic rolled over us, and the program pretty much came to a halt, breaking our hard-earned momentum. When we looked around and thought about restarting this year, the obstacles were significant. People were still recovering from the chaos of the past two years, having to rebuild their libraries and classrooms, training students to be in school again, not to mention the current of emotional trauma flowing steadily beneath it all. Maybe it would be better to just let it go for another year.
But the passion hadn’t been wiped out. A group of enthusiasts began to talk about rekindling the fire in our schools. Perhaps a full-blown tournament program would be too overwhelming, but that didn’t mean we couldn’t do robotics throughout the year. And given that, why not take time to celebrate at the end? And who was to say we couldn’t open it up to other platforms like Sphero and Dash? A plan began to come together for a big event. A true celebration, free of the pressure of having to adhere to strict rules and regulations. Just plain fun.
The Plan Came TO LIFE
By 9:30 am, people were flooding the halls of Drake Middle. The cafeteria was filled with teams putting final touches to their robots. The gym was filled with family and friends and educators, anxious to see what would happen on the eight playing fields spread out across the gym floor. Sphero Bolt mazes took up one hall while there were Sphero RVR obstacle courses at the other end. Huge hand-made Dash and Dot courses were in the cafeteria. There was even a raffle station set up with amazing prizes, many of which were robotics products donated by schools and families. Harmony Jones, the organizer of the event at Drake, was buzzing up and down the halls, adjusting on the run to a much larger crowd than was anticipated.
Jeffco Ed Tech provides a rich library of eBook resources chock-full of ideas and instructions for how to infuse technology and pedagogical knowledge into the classroom.
Youki Terada states in a tech integration article from Edutopia that “The biggest obstacle to teaching online probably isn’t the technology. Teachers seek out educational technology, in fact, because it can have considerable positive impacts on student performance, according to a 2016 study—improving test scores and allowing teachers to assess student achievement more efficiently. The big problem is how to integrate it…”
The Jeffco EdTech eBook library can be instrumental in providing strategies to integrate technology tools to provide positive impacts on student performance.
Here are a few snapshots of some of EdTech's recently published or updated eBooks.
This newly updated eBook, "Get to know your Mimio" is designed with three levels of learning, from just getting started to advanced. It also provides classroom scenarios with examples of our Jeffco students engaging in learning using the Mimio board.
There is even a series of eBooks on robotics to learn about the latest computer science opportunities for students.
I can get Jeffco Professional Credit
for reading EdTech eBooks?
Yes! After reading and learning from a Jeffco EdTech eBook, just complete the form on the last page of the book and a certificate will be emailed to you!
Remember to register for
Jeffco EdTech Get Your TECH ON
GREEN MOUNTAIN HIGH SCHOOL
June, 1st 2022
7:30 am - 3:00 pm This is a FREE event for Jeffco educators, and licensed educators not being paid to work June 1st will receive add pay for their attendance at this event.
"The future classroom must look very different from the traditional classrooms of yesterday. As the landscape of information changes, so must our instructional pedagogies. Our students' futures are digital, and their successes will depend on knowing how to use digital tools to build businesses, communicate effectively and work productively from remote locations. This story-filled keynote will look at how we can better prepare our students for a future where technology will become even smarter and more prevalent." - Holly Clark
What is Get Your TEch On?
June 1st, 2022 from 7:30-3:00 @ Green Mountain High School
Get Your Tech On returns this summer to re-inspire Jeffco educators with ways to get students collaborating, communicating, creating and thinking critically around implementing digital tools and 1:1 devices.
This is a FREE event for Jeffco educators. Licensed educators being paid to work June 1st will receive add pay for their attendance at this event!
Additionally, all attendees will receive a copy of Holly Clark's Chromebook Infused Classroom!
Get Your Tech On Website
2019 GYTO Recap
Meet Your Get Your Tech On Keynote
Holly Clark is an education leader, international speaker, best selling author and an advocate for students. She now shares that journey in her three books and through The Infused Classroom community channels. Holly is known for her leadership and expertise in education and digital learning. She is an international speaker, best selling author and an advocate for students. She is a twenty-plus year educator who has spent over 15 years teaching in a 1:1 classroom and over five years as an administrator in both public and private schools. She holds a master’s degree in Instructional Design and Educational Technology from Columbia University in New York City. Her passion is for helping teachers create classrooms where students want to learn and can become the agents of their own thinking and understanding. Hollyclark.org
Register in ESS using code: ETGYTO, session 0003
This is a free event, but capacity is limited.
Licensed Jeffco staff (who are not regularly paid on June 1st) will receive 6 hours of additional pay for attending this event. Administrators and certified staff are not eligible for additional pay.
Present at Get Your TEch On
Licensed staff are eligible to receive 3 hours of additional pay ($26) per session. Administrators are not eligible for additional pay, but are welcome to present. Certified staff are not eligible for pay.
Let's go on to a Journey - I got you!
I want to take you on a journey - one that I am not the leader of (you aren’t either so no worries). The leader is learning - Let’s learn together first, if you aren’t familiar with Holly Clark and the work she is doing with technology and integration into classrooms please check out her website. Holly Clark (this year's Jeffco’s Get Your Tech On keynote speaker!) If you don’t know Ken Shelton (or even if you do) please take a moment to read Techquity - he does an amazing job of outlining the need and value of tech in our classrooms for equity. Use of technology with our students comes with many benefits and many responsibilities for students, teachers, parents and our schools tech leaders, DTLs. After getting a taste of those two people through their websites - I learned a few things, I hope you did too.
Now - let me lead you on a quick learning journey - here is some info you might not know: Jeffco DTLs are doing a lot of work this year with Jeffco's Equity, Diversity and Inclusion team and making sure not all but each student has the ability to see themselves reflected in our school library collections. Amazing work! But we don’t talk enough about how DTLs have teamed with Jeffco TechforEd to create equity for all students through technology.
This year the TechforEd program brought in grant money to provide 1:1 Chromebooks for our lower grades; schools chose to either focus on 1st and 2nd grade. We now have 1:1 in grades 1 or 2, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10 and 11. Next year, we will add 8th and 12th, covering almost all students - alleviating the burden of purchase at the school level and allowing for schools to concentrate on their integration of technology into the classroom. With this increase in such a short period of time and Covid limiting our ability to have more timely professional learning opportunities around use of technology, we need to jump in with both feet and infuse our classroom with technology.
Which is what this post really started out to be about, the journey of an infused classroom. Now here is where you can jump on the learning journey for yourself and your students.
Holly (I like to think I am on a first name basis with her) has put together an amazing amount of thoughtful ideas and resources for teachers. Check out Holly’s Google/Chromebook Archives. She has practical, engaging and thoughtful professional learning that is student-centered. In her book, The Chromebook Infused Classroom, she dives deeper into pedagogy but also provides thoughtful practical tips from keyboard shortcuts, to tools, to mindful integrations. This is just one example of a 10 question list she puts out -
10 questions to ask when using a Chromebook:
Let's Journey on Together - I Got You!
I am ending this blog post with a few things - First - if you haven’t signed up to attend Get Your Tech On - do it, registration opens in April - you will be so happy you spent a few hours gathering ideas, tips and tricks from your fellow teachers - and bonus - hear Holly Clark speak live! Second - reach out to your DTL and see how you can collaborate with them to move students towards learner-centered tech infusion. And lastly, try just one new thing - make it small, make it meaningful to you, make it meaningful to your students and, as always, let the learning be the leader. Let us know how the journey goes…
P.S. If you think you’d make a great presenter at Get Your Tech On (I think you would be amazing!) sign up here.
Clark, Holly. The Chromebook Infused Classroom: Using Blended Learning to Create Engaging Student-Centered Classroom. Elevate Books Edu, 2020.
On June 1st, Jeffco Ed Tech will be hosting their 3rd Get Your Tech On event at Green Mountain High School. This annual day of learning puts best practices around technology integration at center stage. The spirit of Get Your Tech On is professional learning for teachers, by teachers. Jeffco educators will share how they use district-approved technology to get students creating, collaborating, communicating and thinking critically in their classrooms. It's a day of inspiration that that encourages both administrators and teachers to reconsider what learning should like for our Generation Z learners.
Registration to attend this event will open in April! All licensed staff who attend will be paid additional pay ($26/hour) for the day.
Get Your Tech On Website
Be a Presenter
It’s time to show other Jeffco Educators how you Get Your Tech On! We would love to have you come share how you get your students creating, collaborating, communicating and thinking critically with technology!
Presenter sign-ups are open from March 4th - 18th. We are able to pay up to 2 licensed educators 3 hours of additional pay per session to help cover their planning time. Administrators are welcome to present, but cannot receive additional pay. Classified staff cannot receive additional pay.
Submit Your Presenter Proposals
Keynote Speaker: Holly Clark
Holly is an education leader, international speaker, best selling author and an advocate for students. She now shares that journey in her three books and through The Infused Classroom community channels. Holly is known for her leadership and expertise in education and digital learning. She is an international speaker, best selling author and an advocate for students. She is a twenty-plus year educator who has spent over 15 years teaching in a 1:1 classroom and over five years as an administrator in both public and private schools. She holds a master’s degree in Instructional Design and Educational Technology from Columbia University in New York City. Her passion is for helping teachers create classrooms where students want to learn and can become the agents of their own thinking and understanding. Hollyclark.org
There has been a huge shift in AV discussions this year geared toward Mimio boards and how they are being used instructionally in the classroom. DTLs, teachers, ECTS personnel, and Ed Tech specialists have collaborated this year more than ever on exploring the innovation that Mimios bring to schools. One question was always left on the table... How are teachers using the boards in their classrooms? Ed Tech got the opportunity to go on a WORLD (School) TOUR and dive deeper into how these boards are being used instructionally in Jeffco.
"I love the ease of the board and how I am able to access multiple platforms quickly and easily." -Crystal Fassbinder, Warder Elementary
Christi Reed, DTL at Westridge, and teachers throughout the building were gracious enough to set up a few classrooms for us to view at Westridge Elementary. In third grade with Mandi Lawrence and Abby Fehr, students were singing along with a YouTube video about quadrilaterals playing through the device. The teacher was able to pause and engage the students to trace/name the shapes being described for math vocabulary. Third graders also completed a whole-group Seesaw lesson sorting shapes to classify rectangles.
Second grade teachers Leslie Aranjo and Brooke Lundgren annotated with the pen tools to point out key features and vocabulary of PebbleGo to give her students focus. Students were engaged in research on natural disasters and floods. They also projected their math slide deck for students in a small-group review lesson.
In fifth grade with Allison Olis and Sherri Kissinger, students were completing a QR scavenger hunt on their Chromebooks and sharing their responses to the Mimio board via the Unplug'd app. The Unplug'd app allows teachers and students to connect to the Mimio boards for wireless teaching. Other fifth graders were explaining their math thinking on the board with multiple students showing their work. Mimio boards can handle up to 20 touches at a time!
Many teachers are interested in how to annotate directly on your Google Slides. Crystal Fassbinder and Kim Fulcomer at Warder Elementary dove head first into a Mimio app called Lynx to solve this problem. They connected their Google Drives and pulled up their Google Slides in the app to annotate throughout their lessons. Lynx also lets you co-create interactive Lynx lessons on your board or through the Lynx app on your device with live links, Lynx virtual manipulatives/games, visuals, and more! Crystal notes, "The Mimio Board is engaging and interactive with my students. I love the ease of the board and how I am able to access multiple platforms quickly and easily. As I learn more about Lynx, and spend more time using it, I realize that it is a solid replacement for SMART and allows me to present my information in a slide show way while still interacting and saving the students' writing and thinking."
Evergreen Middle School DTL, Christine Robb, was able to connect us with a 7th grade math teacher Emily Warren. Emily was proficient with the Mimio board and demonstrated next-level understanding. Emily used the Unplug'd app and Annotate extension on her device to write on the board from the back of the room. She was also slowly introducing her students to sharing their screens using the Unplug'd app. Students created their own reflection of shapes on a coordinate plane, then projected two computers to solve each other's problems.
Math teachers, Mike Nishioka and Eric Ponicsan at Golden HS are using tablets with their Mimios and see them upgraded SMART Boards. DTL Christy DeMeyer noted that others in the school have taken their SMART Notebook lessons they created and transferred them to MimioStudio Notebook lessons.
Our Ed Tech and AV Team want to thank the teachers and DTLs for helping us better understand how these boards are being used in their classrooms. We hope that this blog will give others insight on usage across the district and can help them make informed decisions about AV in their schools.
want to learn more?
As always, we suggest that teachers start small and build a solid foundation.
Bear Creek High School
At Fletcher Miller School, students collaborated to create a Book Creator eBook of force and motion with letter sounds. Several students modeled their favorite motion of sliding with their wheelchairs on their adaptive playground equipment. Miller teachers spent a considerable amount of their professional learning time during the pandemic on digital tools and how to incorporate them with students who have severe cognitive and physical disabilities. “Our mission at Miller school is All students with unique needs deserve access to a high quality education that promotes independence and autonomy for a lifetime of learning. The TechforEd program has given us digital tools to help support this mission,” said the Instructional Coach Nickie Woods.
Read one of their eBooks below.
Thank you to all of our dedicated teachers in Jeffco who truly strive and intentionally plan for equity and inclusion with tech integration! Want to learn more about equity and integrating technology with special needs students? Check out these resources: Equity Considerations for Teachers & Leaders and Assistive Technology Team Resources (for qualifying students).
Also, check out our partner blog The Pulse.
Seth takes his digital learning space to infinity and beyond
When you walk into the Library at Free Horizon Montessori you can tell creativity and collaboration are happening. Seth Adcock, a first year Digital Teacher Librarian, has been working hard to create a collaborative space where students can engage with technology and be innovative. Seth has worked hard this year to turn the library space into a 21st century learning hub. He wants students to feel comfortable taking risks and sharing ideas. Daily, Seth has students in the Library Media Center doing STEM projects, using digital tools and learning about technology.
Seth starts his day as tech support for his school. He works with staff and students to ensure their technology is working then opens his library for book checkout. After checkout, though, is when Seth begins to incorporate his numerous ideas for students. From mystery history day and lessons about ancient technology to students creating podcasts and their own music, Seth covers it all.
Currently, the middle schoolers alternate between a STEM Open Lab elective and a Digital Design pathway. During the Open Lab elective, students can determine their interests and pursue various paths. With individualized creativity at the helm for each class, students create music and podcasts in Soundtrap, make Stop Motion videos, create their own stories and series using Book Creator, and engage in robotics and game design to name a few projects.
The upper elementary students are working on their “pursuits.” At the start of the year students list 3 areas of interest that they want to learn more about. The students then have class time to dig further into one of their pursuits. Seth has them take this beyond just research and dig into why they want to learn about the topic.
Taking his passion to space
Seth's passion for teaching, technology and most importantly his students shines through in all of his work. His school and Jeffco are lucky to have him as part of #TeamJeffco.