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The Connected Classroom

Information on and from EducationPlus' Learning Division

Monthly Archives: May 2011

Summer tele classes start at the end of this week! If you haven’t already signed up, do so today- spaces are filling fast:

New classes include: Tech4Learning Classes: Pixie 3 and Share, Google Feng Shui (see below), Best Practices in SMART Notebook Lesson Creation (Level 3 Training) and Integrating Media Literacy Across the Curriculum. Returning favorites include: Using Technology with Classroom Instruction that Works, Creating Technology-Rich Lessons to Increase Student Achievement and Movie-Making in the Classroom: Creating Digital Stories and Photo Essays.

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NEW! Google Feng Shui 
June 9 from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
$149 CSD member; $189 non-member
(One Graduate Credit Available)

Do you need to balance your online life? Are you in the midst of organizational chaos? The 21st century learner is bombarded with information 24/7 from various electric portals….

Come learn shortcuts around Google’s Even More Apps, like iGoogle, Labs, and other Widgets. During this class we will spend time learning about Google’s Hidden Treasures by exploring this online “technology playground.” Participants will understand the power of sharing through Google’s Calendar, Talk and Groups. Come prepared to discover how to organize your own online communication methods to access anytime, anywhere! Bring your own laptop with wireless Internet capabilities. PRE-REQUISITE: You must have a Google Account and/or Gmail.

Register here.

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BYOL is becoming increasingly more popular in K-12 schools- for instructional technology professional development and for classroom use! Bring your own laptop allows you to use great Web 2.0 applications on your own computer- making it even easier to access them at a later date.

THE Journal recently featured an article called The ABCs of BYOL on one Ohio school district’s bring your own laptop effort for students- and the issues that arise from it, like teacher prep, parental buy-in, and equity.

Locally, Lindbergh Schools has a BYOL program. Their program is called Lindbergh Laptop Friendly Schools and has been up and running since January 2011. According to the district, “[s]tarting with the second semester of the 2010-2011 school year, LHS students will be able to access school and Internet resources through the use of their personal computing device such as netbooks, laptops, iPads, tablets, slates, etc.  Other schools will follow during the 2011-2012 school year.” As they note on their website, “[t]his is a young deployment and we hope students and parents will find it useful and educational.”

Many of the Virtual Learning Center‘s programs- including the Midwest Education Technology Conference- offer BYOL workshops for educators. This summer, in the tele, participants may bring their own computer rather that use one provided by the VLC’s lab. However, some tele classes are exclusively BYOL, such as the Google workshops and Tech4Learning workshops- allowing us to offer more PD to St. Louis area educators.

So what do you think of BYOL- for schools, for PD?

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originally posted Thursday, May 28, 2009

… though the content remains true today in 2011! New Links members, feel free to contact me during the summer months!

Posted by Rebecca Morrison in Classroom Technology, Distance Learning, Videoconferencing.
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Conspirator's photostream | "School's out for Summer!"As the 2008-2009 school year wraps up, I want to remind readers that interactive H323 videoconferences for K-12 students are available year-round! If you are part of a summer school program, consider connecting to some content providers during the day. New Links to New Learning members, contact me for options & ideas!

Moodle Basics: Using a Course Management System (no required prior knowledge necessary)  
This July 25th workshop is for you if you want to learn more about using Moodle at your school!

In the first half of the class, find out what this powerful course management system is, how to use it as the one stop website for your class, and how to get your own for free. Participants will have an opportunity to see how other teachers are using Moodle, and try their hands at setting up various features of the course management open source software.

In the second half of the class, participants will have an opportunity to practice developing their own course in Moodle. Lots of hands-on time will be provided to create a sample class and organize it. This class runs 8:30 to 3:30 at Cooperating School Districts at a cost of  $149 for a CSD member; $189 for a non-member. Sign up early! Register here.

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New Links for Your Classroom with Videoconferencing & Skype: Find out how to take your students anywhere in the world to connect with experts and collaborate with other students- all without leaving your classroom! You can make these connections using distance learning technology tools like Skype and curriculum videoconferencing.

In this workshop taught by New Links Program Coordinator Rebecca Morrison (above), you will have the chance to learn how using videoconferencing and Skype fits easily into your existing programs of study. Come learn how to find, design, and participate in virtual field trips and collaborative projects. These lessons promote higher order thinking skills, increase motivation and create fantastic collaborations. Participants will:

· Be introduced to videoconferencing and to CSD’s distance learning program, New Links
· Compare & contrast videoconferencing and Skype for your classroom
· Set up a free Skype account and practice using it by adding contacts, setting privacy settings and looking into
· Learn how to find content for both videoconferences and Skype connections
· Connect to content providers for videoconference demonstrations
· Design virtual field trips or collaborative projects by visiting websites like

This tele one-day workshop takes place June 8 from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
$149 CSD member; $189 non-member  (One Graduate Credit Available)

Register online here.

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From Apple In Education-

Apple will recycle your school’s old, unwanted Mac computers, PCs, and qualifying peripherals from any manufacturer — for free.

To take advantage of this opportunity, you’ll need to register by September 2, 2011. You must recycle a minimum of 25 items in order to participate.

Apple will accept all brands of the following equipment: computers, monitors, laptops, printers, fax machines, scanners, desktop-size copy machines, CD drives, hard drives, TVs, VCRs, projectors, overhead projectors, networking equipment, cables, keyboards, and mice.

Leveraging the Apple Recycling Program for Education ensures that your retired equipment will be disposed of in an environmentally responsible manner, with special consideration given to data security:

  • All recycled hard drives are ground into confetti-size pieces.
  • Customers receive a certificate of destruction for each lot recycled through the program.
  • All asset tags and other identifying information are destroyed.
  • All of the electronic waste collected through the program is processed in North America.

For more detailed information including packing instructions,

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Click on the image below to read entire newsletter and
learn how you can get high quality professional development this summer!

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New this summer, the Virtual Learning Center’s tele is offering three, half-day tele workshops for just $74 each. Register for any tele class here.

On June 13th, come to Cooperating School Districts and learning about Tech4Learning’s Pixie 3 in the morning and dig into Share during the afternoon. You’ll leave with door prizes and software for each class you take! Pixie 3 is 8:30-11:30 and Share is 12:30-3:30.

BYOL for Tech4Learning

In the morning, learn how to work with student to create cross curricular projects in both print and digital formats and collaborate with their peers using Pixie 3! There is a new look and feel to Pixie3. So bring your questions, projects  and lesson plans and get ready to address: State Standards, 21st Century Skills, Differentiated Instruction, RTI and much more! You’ll learn how  easily you can convert your existing Pixie projects to Pixie 3, and learn how to use all of Pixie 3′s new features – including multi-page projects and real-time collaboration, new tools and functionality.
More about Pixie 3
* Multiple-page projects – just what teachers have been asking for
* Realtime project collaboration – Students in same subnet work on projects collaboratively
* Free rotation of text bubbles
* Search NetTrekker for images (requires NetTrekker subscription)
* Multiple publishing options including PDF export
* Publishing to a safe environment available with maintenance

During the afternoon, learn how Share is an amazing 21st Century Authoring tool. Share makes it easy to create interactive presentations, PDF and FlashR files, and web sites. You will learn how to access templates for design and productivity. Integrating  technology into your curriculum will be engaging and fun. Join us to brainstorm and collaborate to address Curricular Objectives and then, put the technology to work for you. Whether you have wanted to learn how to create portfolios, webpages, brochures or create path animation, this workshop is for you. Engage, Create and Share.
More about Share

* ePortfolios
* Templates for design, productivity and creativity
* Integration of Pics4Learning
* Gradients
* Path Animation
* Publishing to a safe environment available with maintenance

teachers in the tele

The following day, we invite you to come learn the basics of Prezi in the tele and leave with your own fabulous online presentation! This class takes place June 14th from 8:30 a.m. to 12.  Learn how to utilize this application for classroom use in Using Prezi to Create Zooming Presentations. Prezi is a web-based presentation application & storytelling tool that uses a single canvas instead of traditional slides. Text, images, videos and other objects are placed on the infinite canvas and grouped together in frames. The canvas allows users to create non-linear presentations, where users can zoom in and out of a visual map. A path through different objects and frames can be defined, representing the order of the information to be presented. Prezi can be developed in a browser window, and then downloaded so that an Internet connection is not needed when sharing it. (It costs $74 for a CSD member and $94 for a non-member). Register for any tele class here.

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princeton review logoIn addition to our ACT Prep interactive videoconference course, New Links will now be offering online test prep for public, private and parochial schools within Cooperating School Districts of Greater St. Louis. The online test prep includes ACT PSAT and SAT, which comes with two options: Online and Live Online. These classes are taught by the experts at The Princeton Review!

Online classes are self-paced by the participating student and cover approximately 30-40 hours of time. The account is active for 200 days.

Live Online classes can be customized to students’ needs. Live Online classes last 18 hours; they can run six sessions with three hours/block, or run nine sessions with 2 hours/block. During Live Online classes, students interact with an instructor who leads them through the curriculum.

These classes can run up to $599. Through Cooperating School Districts* (click on comments section for more information), you get the same Princeton Review classes for a greatly discounted rate:

· Online class through CSD will cost a student just $125

· Live Online class through CSD will cost a student just $150

For more complete details on these online courses from The Princeton Review and Cooperating School Districts of Greater St. Louis, contact New Links Program Coordinator Rebecca Morrison. Look for more information on future college prep offerings from The Princeton Review and CSD later this summer!

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