Website for Parents(‘ Night)

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This year I flipped day 1 for my classes: I made videos of my course guide and my technology sign ups so that we didn’t have to take class time to go over them; the links were posted on the class’ ItsLearning pages. But the parents don’t have access to ItsLearning. I wasn’t going to just hit play at Parents’ Night and show the videos, so I made a website for Parents’ Night where I posted the videos.

The address of the website is For the three English courses, the GoogleCalendar appears at the top of the page, below which are the two videos. Below them is the paper version of the Course Guide and the course Twitter feed. For the Latin course, for which I don’t use the calendar as often, the Twitter feed and the one video are at the top (no Course Guide video; it’s not quite as elaborate as the English one). Below those is the GoogleCalendar.

The idea was of course to have my materials for parents’ night available in one place. The bigger picture is that parents have a resource throughout the year for some of the basic information about the course, namely assignments and announcements. I’d like it to become one of those dynamic websites where I include updates about the course, what great discussions we have in class, and the topics we cover, but I imagine that will be one of those things that never quite gets done.

And it did seem to serve its purpose well last night. I had my course materials available (and will next year as well) and parents seemed to appreciate the access / information. I do feel a bit conflicted with such an approach, just because the majority of my students are juniors and seniors and I do want to ween them off of their parents (or their parents off of them). On the other hand, the transparency movement is certainly here to stay and it is one that I understand and have embraced; this is a reflection of that movement.


I’m All In With Doceri

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This year I have committed fully to Doceri. On the heals of last year and my experience with Splashtop, Doceri, and the Eno Board / Pen, Doceri is the most reliable and the most efficient way to give and share student notes.

Here are the advantages of Doceri:

  • consistent connection – the qr code on the home screen when Doceri Desktop opens has never not worked and connects almost instantaneously; I have had consistent difficulty with Splashtop’s and the Eno board connection
  • single file export – the notes made on Doceri are exported as a single, multi-page .pdf; the Eno board exports each screen as a separate file

The only disadvantage to Doceri is that the computer control is not quite as precise as I would like (and the one area where Splashtop exceeds Doceri) but that is minor compared to the two advantages above, which for me were the two biggest time wasters when trying to give digital notes and share them.

So I’m all in with Doceri, and have given and shared more notes in the first month or so than perahsp all of second semester last year.


iOS 7 Has Reached iCloud

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Just checked my calendar on iCloud and it’s completely different. Apparently iOS 7 has reached iCloud. Pretty cool.

Flipping Day 1 (part 2)

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The second flipped video for day 1 I made was of technology uses / sign-ups, so that I wouldn’t have to take class time to walk students through these sign-ups, especially given the inevitable disparity among the technological facility of the students, i.e. some completing these sign-ups very quickly and others struggling mightily. With the video students can work at their own pace, rewind and pause to help them and to meet them at their level.

Handy Little Feature of GoogleCalendar

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Every day from GoogleCalendar I receive a summary of my day’s events in my email. Since school hasn’t really started yet (two class days, but both days shortened periods, so mostly administrivia), today was the first day that I had anything class-related on the calendar and so today was the first day that I saw what that email would look like in a functional form. And it’s pretty handy. I get a summary of the day’s events every day in my email. I can see liking that.

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