Amy Schoenrock's blog

05 Oct

Panel Discussion: Accessible Instruction is EVERY Educator's Responsibility

in Atomic Assist, Special Education & Assistive Technology

Providing accessible instructional materials to all students requires strong cross-departmental communication.

Join Atomic Learning for an online panel discussion with Joy Zabala from the National Center on Instructional Materials and Gayl Bowser, Assistive Technology consultant and author, to hear discussion on:

  • tips for engaging school leaders in understanding the importance of AIM, including the PALM toolkit from CAST.
  • resources to share with other educators to help them impact students in their classrooms.
  • the successes and challenges districts have experienced.

If you haven't already, pledge to do your part to bring accessible instruction to all students.

26 Jan

Weekly Giveaway Winner - 1/26/15

in winner

Congratulations to Francisco Abeyta from the American School for the Deaf in Hartford, CT, our Weekly Giveaway t-shirt winner!

Not sure what the Weekly Giveaway is? Log into Atomic Learning for your chance to win! New tutorials featured and winners each week so continue to stop back for your chance to win!

21 Jan

Digital Sticky Notes - Guest Blog Post

in teacher PD, teachers, teaching, technology integration, training

Guest Blog Post by Maria Burnham, Library Media Specialist

For many years now, I've been a big fan of the Post-It Note.  Big, little, bright, or that familiar dull yellow, I just love to use sticky notes to help remind me (and others around me) what's going on.  

Sometimes, though, a physical sticky note doesn't work.  With my laptop, they can fall off or I just plain run out of room to put them...

Consider using the Stickies App found in your Applications folder.  Open this app and the sticky note lives on your computer screen and not on your desk.

To make things even easier, consider having the app automatically open upon login.  To set this up, right click (or some call it secondary click) on the app while it's in your Dock.  Under "Options" choose "Open at Login."  Now you will always see your virtual Post-It Notes.

20 Jan

Creating a Clear District Vision for Your Tech Initiative

in Connected Consulting, Initiative, Leadership, Planning, Planning tools, Tech initiative, Vision, Vision planning, Atomic Learning, professional development, school leaders

Is your technology initiative set up to have the impact it should? Or, are results less than what was anticipated by the district and the community?

Education publications and even national media are regularly plagued with headlines of failed 1:1, mobile, and other tech initiatives. And, while there are of course multiple factors that are contributing to the lack of adoption in schools, many of them come right down to planning and communication.

Ensure your district has a clear vision for the future and is on the right track by downloading a free workbook that helps pinpoint areas for consideration and further development by asking critical questions that many districts fail to consider.

Download the workbook.

19 Jan

Atomic Learning and 88 (and counting) Other Companies Commit to Keeping Student Data Private

in Atomic Learning, children, digital citizenship

January 1, 2015 marked the start of the pledge Atomic Learning signed last October to commit to using student data only for educational purposes (see blog post here). Last week, President Obama stressed the importance of this Student Privacy Pledge, asking for other companies to join the commitment to protect student data. As of today, 89 companies have joined the movement.

19 Jan

Weekly Giveaway Winner - 1/19/15

in winner

Congratulations to Brandie Nickerson from Fort Bend ISD in Sugar Land, TX, our Weekly Giveaway t-shirt winner!

Not sure what the Weekly Giveaway is? Log into Atomic Learning for your chance to win! New tutorials featured and winners each week so continue to stop back for your chance to win!

16 Jan

Meet Our eLearning Developers: Dr. Amanda J. Rockinson-Szapkiw

in eLearning Developers

Continuing the series introducing you to our eLearning Contributor team, we'd like you to meet Dr. Amanda J. Rockinson-Szapkiw.

Dr. Rockinson-Szapkiw is passionate about teaching and learning and  has been working in the higher, distance education environment for almost 10 years. She has seen technology and networking systems mature and enable learners and educators to harness technology for the purpose of collaborative learning. She is always excited to work with individuals, such as those at Atomic Learning, to harness technology to provide the opportunity for many to increase their knowledge base both formally and informally.
 
She holds an Ed.D. in Distance Education, a M.A. in Counseling, and a B.S. in Elementary Education. She has served as a faculty member in the School of Education at Liberty University since 2009. She primarily teaches doctoral research and analysis courses.  In 2011, she received the Chancellor’s Teaching Award for Excellence. And, McKeachie, in his book on teaching tips upholds her use of social media as a learning tool in the classroom as exemplary.

14 Jan

Focus on Learning Series: Real World Learning

in 1:1 initiatives, Connected Consulting, Focus on Learning, Initiative, Leadership, Planning, Planning tools, Tech initiative, Vision, Vision planning

This article was originally posted on the Connected Consulting blog by Drew McConnell.

I had just conducted a training to help university English majors learn to use Camtasia. Camtasia is a screen capture and video editing program these students were using to create digital stories, a method of storytelling using visual images and audio narration. As I typically do, I had the professor bring his students to the computer lab. I then facilitated as each student created their own video.

13 Jan

Boomerang for GMail in Chrome - Guest Blog Post

in email program, online PD, professional development, teacher PD, teachers

Guest Blog Post by Maria Burnham, Library Media Specialist

In this blog post, I want to share with you Boomerang for GMail. It's an application add-on that connects with your GMail and appears at the bottom of your new email messages. Basically, the add-on allows you to:

  • Schedule out an email to be sent at a later time;
  • Send a reminder to yourself if someone doesn't respond to an email by a certain date;
  • Or clear out messages from your inbox until a date that is more relevant to the message.

For example, if on a Monday I'm thinking about something I will need to address on a Thursday, I might type up an email (while it's fresh in my ever-aging mind) and schedule it to get sent out Wednesday afternoon or Thursday morning.  

For a free add-on, Boomerang is pretty powerful!

12 Jan

Weekly Giveaway Winner - 1/12/15

in winner

Congratulations to Anthony Grice from Newburgh Enlarged City School District in New Windsor, NY, our Weekly Giveaway t-shirt winner!

Not sure what the Weekly Giveaway is? Log into Atomic Learning for your chance to win! New tutorials featured and winners each week so continue to stop back for your chance to win!

09 Jan

Career Skills Training on How to Create a Digital Portfolio Introduced

in new

Atomic Learning recently added Career Skills training on Creating Digital Portfolios to its training library.

In this new training series, viewers will learn how to use popular web platforms to compile their digital portfolios, including Google Sites, Weebly, Silk, and Google Drive. The introductory training topics include:

  • What is a digital portfolio?
  • Why should I create a digital portfolio?
  • What should I include in my digital portfolio?
  • Do's and don'ts of creating a digital portfolio
  • How do I get started? Steps to creating your digital portfolio

This training series can be found at: http://www.atomiclearning.com/creating-digital-portfolio-training. Other training added to the Atomic Learning library includes:

07 Jan

Smarter Google Searching - Guest Blog Post

in classroom application, digital citizens, digital citizenship, digital learning, e-learning, ed tech, education technology, educators, infographic

Guest Blog Post by Maria Burnham, Library Media Specialist

After attending the TIES conference (a conference on educational technology) recently, I came home with a vast number of ideas, tips and tricks, and tools. But perhaps one of my favorite sessions I attended was about helping students be better researchers.  

One of my favorite instant take-aways was this infographic on how to use Google effectively. To see the entire image (full of much more detailed information) from www.hackcollege.com, click here.  

But here's one section to give you a quick glimpse of smarter Google searching.

05 Jan

Weekly Giveaway Winner - 1/5/15

in winner

Congratulations to Kevin Schanck from Enid ISD 57 in Enid, OK, our Weekly Giveaway t-shirt winner!

Not sure what the Weekly Giveaway is? Log into Atomic Learning for your chance to win! New tutorials featured and winners each week so continue to stop back for your chance to win!

Learn more.

29 Dec

New Content Alert: iTunes 12 and more!

in new
 

 

In addition to iTunes 12 Training, Atomic Learning added even more to its library, log in and check it out:

18 Dec

Focus on Learning Series: Process vs. Product

in 1:1 initiatives, Connected Consulting, Focus on Learning, Initiative, Leadership, Planning, Planning tools, Tech initiative, Vision, Vision planning

This article was originally posted on the Connected Consulting blog by Drew McConnell.

David was a university student. He had a creative mind and a penchant for media. At the time, I was a technology trainer and media assistant at the same university. I helped students and faculty learn to use a variety of technology and software. Our number one rule as media assistants was to not touch the mouse when assisting people.

Period.

This was not to be mean or to avoid spreading germs, but to follow the fundamental idea that in order for someone to effectively learn a skill, they had to do it themselves. Not watch someone do it or hear someone talk about it, but actually do it.

David was a frequent visitor of our media lab. He would come into the lab, sit down at a computer, and begin working on a media project. The thing you need to know about David however, is he would come in with lofty goals for complex video and image editing projects. These projects were always well outside of his skill level, or in the words of Lev Vygotsky, well beyond his Zone of Proximal Development (ZPD).

Whenever he walked in the door, I knew it would not be long until he moseyed over to my desk to ask for help. When he inevitably did, I would oblige and sit down with him at his computer. David would then explain to me his vision for the project. Ignoring the fact that his ideas were outside his ZPD, I would begin to guide him through the process and encourage him to experiment and try things with the software to increase his skills. Without fail, five minutes into the project he would push his chair away from the desk, throw his hands up in the air, and say “You do it.”

16 Dec

Meet Our eLearning Developers: Nick Tieri

in eLearning Developers

Continuing the series introducing you to our eLearning Contributor team, we'd like you to meet Nick Tieri.

Nick received an Applied Associates of Science Degree in Video Production & Applied Associates of Science Degree in Multimedia from Hennepin Technical College in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota.

His professional experience includes being a Commercial Producer for Hubbard Broadcasting since 2009. He also worked as a Videographer and Commercial Producer for Dreamworld Studios from 2005 to 2009. He still enjoys working as a Videographer and Director for Robbinsdale School District 281 which he has done since 1999.

Nick is a Member of the Upper Midwest Emmy Chapter, and has received the Midwest Emmy Award in 2012, and was nominated for Midwest Emmy Awards in 2010 and 2013.

16 Dec

Using Hot Corners Feature - Guest Blog Post

in Apple, laptop

Guest Blog Post by Maria Burnham, Library Media Specialist

Today I wanted to share with you how to use the Hot Corners feature on laptops.  Many high school students are using this feature to quickly change their screen display if they've been goofing around and not doing their schoolwork. However, Hot Corners is also a great way to get to your desktop or Mission Control quickly.

Basically, Hot Corners is a way to change screen display by moving your mouse to one of the four corners of your screen. You have to set up the activation of your corners in System Preferences.  

To do this:
Go to the Apple in the upper left corner --> System Preferences --> Mission Control. Then, you will see a Hot Corners button. Use the dropdown menus to choose what happens in which corner. You can even preview each corner while still in System Preferences menu, too, in case you're not sure what some of the options are in the dropdown menu.


Maria Burnham is a passionate Library Media Specialist at one of our partner districts in Minnesota, Sauk Rapids-Rice. She shares her passion for technology in education with her peers in a weekly email highlighting tips and tricks to engage users in technology and Atomic Learning, which she cleverly named “Mondays with Maria.” That weekly email is where this guest blog post came from. We will continue to post Maria’s inspiration from time to time, feel free to share with others! You can follow her on twitter:

15 Dec

Weekly Giveaway Winner - 12/15/14

in winner

Congratulations to William Clements from Del Valle ISD in Del Valle, TX, our Weekly Giveaway t-shirt winner!

Not sure what the Weekly Giveaway is? Log into Atomic Learning for your chance to win! New tutorials featured and winners each week so continue to stop back for your chance to win!

02 Dec

Webinar Tomorrow: Ensuring Your Tech Plan is a Learning Plan

in Initiative, Leadership, Planning, Planning tools, Tech initiative, administrators, webinar

Lessons Learned from a Superintendent and His Team

Has your district invested in technology, perhaps a 1 to 1 initiative, but you're starting to question if it's truly driving change?  Do you wonder if you should even continue investing in technology?

In this discussion, hear how Dr. Robert O'Connor, Superintendent at Marble Falls, TX, asked himself those questions and how he approached answering them to truly move the district forward.  Eric Penrod, Executive Director of Curriculum & Instruction, and Wade Stanford, Assistant Superintendent, will also join the conversation as they walk us through how they went from asking themselves if their tech initiative was just a waste of money to determining if it was truly improving learning.

01 Dec

Weekly Giveaway Winner - 12/1/14

in winner

Congratulations to Sherelda Pell from Patrick County Public Schools in Stuart, VA, our Weekly Giveaway t-shirt winner!

Not sure what the Weekly Giveaway is? Log into Atomic Learning for your chance to win! New tutorials featured and winners each week so continue to stop back for your chance to win!

26 Nov

Online Training on Google Classroom Extends Educator’s Ability to “Go Green”

in classroom, classroom application, classroom lessons, educator, educators, new

Google Classroom is designed to help teachers create and collect assignments paperlessly. In this online training series, educators will learn about Classroom from both the teacher and student perspective, followed by some instruction for administrators. To see a sample of this training, visit http://atomiclearning.com/k12/google-classroom-training#.

To learn more about becoming an Atomic Learning subscriber, visit: www.atomiclearning.com/more.

24 Nov

Weekly Giveaway Winner - 11/24/14

in winner

Congratulations to Dan Keller from Anoka-Hennepin ISD #11 in Coon Rapids, MN, our Weekly Giveaway t-shirt winner!

Not sure what the Weekly Giveaway is? Log into Atomic Learning for your chance to win! New tutorials featured and winners each week so continue to stop back for your chance to win!

21 Nov

Creating a Learner-Centered Environment - Marble Falls Tech Initiative

in Initiative, Planning, Planning tools, Tech initiative, Vision, Vision planning, learning, school leaders

Listen as Marble Falls I.S.D., TX administrators share how they are redefining and rebuilding their district’s vision and plan for integrating technology to shape and ensure a solid foundation for instruction and technology, that is learner-centered with the help of Connected Consulting and Atomic Learning. For a workbook to help your district develop a learning-based vision for your tech initiative, visit http://al.atomiclearning.com/focus.

20 Nov

Mobile and Beyond: McAllen ISD supports district-wide tech initiative, PD, and tech training needs

in 1:1 initiatives, Tech initiative, Mobile Learning, mobile, mobile devices, mobile initiative, mobile initiatives, mobile learning, online PD, professional development, teacher PD, tech integration

McAllen ISD, a district with 1,600 full-time employees, in McAllen, Texas, initially chose Atomic Learning to support their 1:1 iPad initiative (27,000 iPads deployed to every learner, K-12, plus staff). The district has since learned the importance of the Atomic Learning resources to not only support their mobile initiative, but to also expand the depth of technology training district-wide.

McAllen promotes using Atomic Learning in several ways, all of which are driving an increase in Atomic Learning usage in their district. One example of this is that during the last school year, McAllen scrapped their Career Technical Education (CTE) curriculum and transitioned to only using Atomic Learning content. Another avenue is that parent usage is climbing after an Atomic Learning-led parent liaison group. One parent shared that he took Atomic Learning's training on apps like Word, Powerpoint, and Excel, printed the certificates of completion, took those with him to a job interview, and was hired. McAllen encourages teachers to go directly to Atomic Learning for their PD rather than going outside of the district, which is also increasing their usage.

McAllen now has new direction with a new Instructional Technology Director, Ann Vega. Here are Vega's goals for Atomic Learning within MISD for her first year, in order of importance.

  1. Get all administrators trained on Atomic Learning and get them comfortable assigning training to various groups (teachers, admin. assistants, para professionals, HR, parents, and others).
     
  2. Get all teachers trained in Atomic Learning, especially using Google Apps for education (which has a built-in LMS)
     
  3. Get all teachers assigning training/projects/assessments to their students
     
  4. Possibly custom-uploading videos and other resources to assign training to teachers, including new teacher training and other annual mandated compliance training for reporting, such as Blood Borne Pathogens.

Ann especially wants to create user groups so she can assign training, and track it. McAllen is having great success as they continue to integrate Atomic Learning into their district.

Want to get your district on track with teacher PD and training district-wide? Contact Atomic Learning today!

19 Nov

Minnesota District Wins State Award in Leadership and Technology

in ed tech, tech integration, technology integration

We would like to extend our congratulations to our friends at Sauk Rapids-Rice School District for being nominated and selected as Minnesota’s 2014 TIES (Technology and Information Educational Services) Technology Leadership Team Award Recipient. The Sauk Rapids-Rice School District was selected for its innovation and positive impact on learning through technology. 

TIES noted the leadership of the Community and District, the ability to “build” community, innovative uses of technology, and successful community partnerships.

TIES will nominate the Sauk Rapids-Rice School District for the National Award of the Consortium on School Networking (CoSN).

Looking for ways to integrate technology in your district? Check out some ideas from Sauk Rapids-Rice’s Library Media Specialist, Maria Burnham, here.

19 Nov

Infographic: Making the Grade - Great Teachers in Our Schools

in educator, educators, recognition, teachers
As we continue to celebrate American Education Week, we wanted to share this infographic on Making the Grade - Great Teachers in Our Schools, and again say thank you to all the educators that have helped mold us into the individuals we have become and continue to guide future generations.

teachers

18 Nov

Free Webinar: Ensuring Your Tech Plan is a Learning Plan

in webinar

Lessons Learned from a Superintendent and His Team

Has your district invested in technology, perhaps a 1 to 1 initiative, but you're starting to question if it's truly driving change?  Do you wonder if you should even continue investing in technology?

In this discussion, hear how Dr. Robert O'Connor, Superintendent at Marble Falls, TX, asked himself those questions and how he approached answering them to truly move the district forward.  Eric Penrod, Executive Director of Curriculum & Instruction, and Wade Stanford, Assistant Superintendent, will also join the conversation as they walk us through how they went from asking themselves if their tech initiative was just a waste of money to determining if it was truly improving learning.

18 Nov

Using LucidChart Diagrams - Guest Blog Post

in online PD, teacher PD, teachers, tech integration

Guest Blog Post by Maria Burnham, Library Media Specialist

Today I want to talk to you about the Google Add-On "LucidChart Diagrams."  If you ever need to make a quick graphic organizer, Venn diagram, or flow chart and still be in your Google Drive, consider adding on LucidChart.  

In your Drive, in a new document, under the "Add-Ons" menu option, click on "Get Add-Ons".  Search for "LucidChart" and add it to your Drive.  Now, when you go back into the Add-Ons menu in your document, you should see "LucidChart Diagrams" as an option.  Select it and a side panel will appear.  

Click on the red "Create" button in the side panel, and you will see a menu of options to insert in your document.  Below is a preview of some options.


 

17 Nov

Weekly Giveaway Winner - 11/17/14

in winner

Congratulations to Frankie Medlen from Weston County School District 7 in Upton, WY, our Weekly Giveaway t-shirt winner!

Not sure what the Weekly Giveaway is? Log into Atomic Learning for your chance to win! New tutorials featured and winners each week so continue to stop back for your chance to win!