My district is really getting moving with Google Apps for Education (GAFE). There is lots of sharing going on, and teachers are students are enrolling in all kinds of courses through Google Classroom. It is important to make sure that you are reading all of your GAFE-account Gmail, but it can be annoying to check another account multiple times per day. Below is a link to short screencast I made using the Google Chrome Browser and the ScreenCastify extension from the Chrome Web Store. I highly recommend you play around with this extension because it gives you a great way to capture and easily share quick tutorials. The videos are stored in my Google Drive, so I can share them with a link just like any other file!
Forwarding Gmail to Outlook
In my new position this year as an Instructional Technology Specialist, I have had a lot of opportunities to continue my professional development in different ways. Even though I might not be able to directly implement new tools or strategies with my own group of students, I want to make sure that I am a helpful resource for the teachers and staff members I work with so that they feel more comfortable trying something new.
Last week, I was able to attend a Day of Discovery put on by Discovery Education at our local Region 10 Education Service Center. I heard that they come to do similar events every year, but unfortunately as a classroom teacher it was hard to secure and plan for a sub on a Friday in October. So I was happy to attend, take notes, and try out some of their new tools and ideas so that I could share them with other teachers who weren’t able to be there in person. I loved Discovery Education as a middle school science teacher, and my current district has subscriptions to the Science TechBook. Streaming was nice, but the TechBook includes virtual labs, interactive reading texts, and assessment pieces I was able to assign to my students.
Some of the highlights of my day included:
– Learning to better search and filter results in the Streaming section. I knew about their videos and high quality images, but I was surprised to see the library also included a lot of content-based songs that included printed lyrics for use in lessons.
– The new Board Builder tool which allows students and teachers to create multimedia digital posters (think Glogster-style), within the Discovery Education site with the ability to link streaming content and personal uploads. I sat in on one session where I had work-time to create my own Board, which I plan to use to help share information about DE features.
– Applying to become part of the DEN Star program – a network of educators that connect and help one another as they use Discovery Education.
The event was free and was a great opportunity to DISCOVER (haha – I crack myself up) better ways to use a piece of technology that my district already has. If your district uses Discovery Ed, I would recommend that you attend a similar event if you can.