Skip to main content

All In A Day's Work

Let's see, what all did I do today? First we brainstormed yearbook themes. Fun but creativity takes effort first thing in the morning. I should have had that second cup of coffee.

Then in Web Design we shopped for three different telecommunications Internet Service Providers. Interesting to note that Juno and NetZero have identical websites but different pricing.

Prep period was spent networking a new netbook for remedial help and rearranging the second lab. The PC's remained connected, I just needed to move furniture. I also helped a teacher who's unchanged password was blocking their Internet access - just a little trouble shooting over the phone.

Researched the American Sociological Association and guided students through developing tri-fold brochures for the organization. Even though I'm not grading their graphics arts skills it was refreshing to see quality brochures with real content and more than quick clip art.

Then after a hasty lunch of turkey sandwich and yogurt, the geography class tackled relief and topographical maps. I wanted them to color sections of a single map which we could piece together on the wall. Unfortunately, I should have given them a master copy to mimic rather than flounder on colors.

The girls in Computer Applications then enjoyed researching actual web design jobs in Los Angeles but got the biggest kick from locating beach side apartments they could afford with their job's salary. They may only be freshmen but it's ok to start opening their eyes to the true cost of living.

Programming class then flew through the entire second chapter about Windows XP, mostly because we had covered the year before in Computer Applications. I'm excited to start Small Basic sooner but have yet to install the software and work out my lesson plans.

And so with classes finally over I headed outside to run with the cross country team that I coach. We have a meet on Thursday so it's important to keep everyone updated and ready to do their best. Then as five o'clock rolls around I could begin catching up on all the IT requests.

With the elementary lab reconfigured, I needed to add three more PC's. One was an old high school lab PC so it just needed updates run, but the other two were donated. That means finding network drivers, validating windows, and networking them. none of my day was particularly difficult or disconcerting, but now twelve hours after arriving at school, I'm ready to go home.

Popular posts from this blog

Classcraft Interactive Notebook Page

Finished crafting interactive notebook pages for Classcraft, an engaging classroom management tool.

This fall I plan to add interactive notebooks to my classroom procedures. The goal is to provide students with something tangible to take home at the end of the semester. So that means creating or borrowing resources to guide students in developing their notebook.

Classcraft is a classroom management tool, an elaborate punishments and reward system designed like an epic role play game. Students create avatars and can upgrade pets and outfits based on experience and gold points earned. They can also lose points and suffer minor penalties. Everything is done in a fun, game like environment.

The computer lab is already divided into five or six stations, which lends itself easily to guilds or teams of students who work together in the game. I want students to develop their own backstory and choose their characters for the good of the group. I also need students to keep their login info some…

Easy Offline Lesson Plans

My lesson was on search engines, but the Internet was down. Learn how to have great offline backup plans.

So I had a room full of fifth grade students with a lesson plan on search engines. We were going to compare search results from different engines. We were going to learn how to refine our searches. We were not going anywhere because the Internet connection had gone down.

So I quickly checked with the librarian and moved my lesson offline. We selected books from the reference cart: dictionaries, atlases, encyclopedias and records books. I then gave students the same search queries from the lesson. We still compared results and discussed why some sources provided better results. We even contemplated if other libraries would have better selections or unique resources.

The trick to any offline lesson plan is understanding what concepts digital tools are built upon. Digital search is still the search for and analysis of information. For centuries, people have dug through catalogs of i…

Create A Custom Mobile Experience with Microsoft PowerApps

I recently dabbled with Microsoft PowerApps, creating a custom mobile experience for my own data collection process. PowerApps comes packaged with our Office 365 tenant so there was no additional cost. Overall it was fairly straightforward and easy to get up and running quickly.

Like so many things, the actual interface was quick to construct, most of it pulling from templates. Where most people will struggle is in the construction of the data management tools behind the app. I already had a working Excel spreadsheet for collecting data so that part was already done.

PowerApps quickly pulled together a mobile experience where I could sort, filter and search through spreadsheet data. I can also create additional lines in the spreadsheet using mobile form fields. I liked being able to make two separate apps for different sheets in the same workbook, helping to keep my data organized.

Now I already had the same Excel spreadsheet pinned to the home screen of my Android phone. So the Powe…