Saturday, February 15, 2014

Instructional Technology and Digital Learning At Andover High School February 10th-14th 2014 - Daniel Downs

Even with a shortened week we were busy making connections and creating new experiences in the Innovation Lab and Instructional technology at Andover High School.

Marketing teacher Karen Stevens started a new semester integrating the web based timeline creator into her courses. This website enables students to create web based presentations in which students upload images,write copy and organized dates into nice graphic timelines.

Mrs.Stevens carefully constructs the lesson by having students develop their ideas and find the images before she introduces the tool. This enables students to have an organized workflow and focus on using the technology without the need to do more research. The students find the timeline creation engaging and enables them to make a variety of connections with events.
View my tutorial on the use of this tool that I created to assist with teachers who want to integrate it.
Beginning With Dipity Part 1

A representative from Burlington High School was on campus to train members of the Digital Learning team and Social Studies teacher Michelle Chaccus with the Ipad application “Net Texts”. This is an application which will allow access to more easily develop lessons and units using “Open Educational Ressources”  often called OER. We expect over the next couple months to support the implementation of this application to better support the use of IPads in the classroom.

On Monday the members of Students government met in the Andover Innovation lab with Dustin Luca from the Andover Townsman to do an article. He was able to get a variety of perspectives on the benefits of the Innovation lab. On Friday he returned to take some photos and meet the students involved in the help desk. We are expecting the article to be on the February 27th edition of the Townsman.

On Tuesday I had the opportunity to assist Tom Powers with the integration of Google Groups into the classroom. He plans on using the web based tool to create web forums for the sharing of documents and written dialogue in his Spanish classroom.  Students immediately accessed the class group and could send a sample reply within the first class it was added. Google groups can enable the organized sharing of materials and responses to questions from the teacher,questions from eachother and a continual forum of responses to sustain engagement in and out of the classroom. Here is a view of a sample interface of Google Groups.

Parents night was on Wednesday and I met many supportive parents who I was able to provide even more background information about the development of the Andover Innovation Lab and help desk. Principal Chris Lord was also able to show me his results from the use of “Poll Everywhere” application which enables real world integration of polling of groups.
The results showed an intense interest in the “use of technology” at the high school which I am glad to see as a topic of interest and look forward to connecting with parents as  we move forward..

In preparation for parents night I worked with Tim VanWey of the Science department in sharing out the link to his presentation for parents which includes links for his contracts and introduction to the course material for the semester. Check this link to see his presentation and corresponding links. This presentation is a great way to share documents and introductory information.
Tim VanWey Science Curriculum Overview

On our snow day I introduced the staff via email the Chrome Apps Store to teachers. This is a deep and excitng teacher resource for a variety of subjects. There are foreign language resources for speaking and science tools with anatomy lessons and vocabulary. The Chrome App(Link Here) store also provides easier access to note taking tools and web based resources for productivity. 

Below is a list of a few of my favorites with descriptions.

This is the Chrome App which enables clipping and saving webpages as images right to your Google Drive. This icon goes right into the browser for snipping websites on the fly. Gives you a great opportunity to collect and organize your web searches as web images.

 The Evernote Web clipper snips webpages and saves them right into your Evernote Account.

Of course Evernote is also available as a Chrome App. Make it even easier to access by adding to your browser.

The UberConference is a great way to bring people together on the web. Invite people using their email or phone number and have an instant conference. Sets up quickly without hassle.