EdTechTeacher http://edtechteacher.org Leading Change in Changing Times Wed, 01 Jul 2015 15:47:10 +0000 en-US hourly 1 How to Create and Collaborate Online with Microsoft Excel – from Jennifer Carey http://edtechteacher.org/how-to-create-and-collaborate-online-with-microsoft-excel-from-jennifer-carey/ http://edtechteacher.org/how-to-create-and-collaborate-online-with-microsoft-excel-from-jennifer-carey/#comments Wed, 01 Jul 2015 11:18:39 +0000 http://edtechteacher.org/?p=7196 Read more]]>

This post first appeared on Daily Genius.
Office365-Excel-1, EdTechTeacherUntil recently, in the world of online collaboration, Microsoft has been decidedly lacking. However, they have made impressive strides in online and cloud computing tools over the past year. For example, you can now easily create, edit, and collaborate on Excel spreadsheets and workbooks. This can be accomplished using the new Office Online or Office 365. It’s important to note that while Office Online is free, Office 365 is a paid resource ($99/year home and $69/year personal annual subscription; K-12 institutions have their own pricing tiers) and will give you greater access to resources, including free full-use of Mobile and Computer apps. Microsoft recently extended its educational Microsoft Office license to include its online 365 service for free to schools. This means that if your school has a Microsoft license, you already have access to this tool. Just check with your IT administrative team to learn how to logon and access it.

Office365-Excel-1, EdTechTeacher

Navigating Office Online is a little different than the local tools on your computer. However, they are quick to figure out. To login, go to Office.com (if you have a free Microsoft account or Office 365 account) or go to login.live.com to create an account.  Today, we’re going to explore Excel, so click on the Excel icon to get started.


A new window will open and, just like the desktop version, you will be given the option to access your recent workbooks or to create a new one using one of Excel’s workbook or spreadsheet templates. If you select a workbook that you have recently been working on, then you will need to click on Edit workbook → Edit in Excel Online (for collaborative features) or Edit in Excel (to open on your desktop for more advanced functionality). Once you do this, you will have access to many of Excel’s robust tools. You can can format spreadsheets and columns, include complex functions, create charts and graphs, and more! With a school or paid-for subscription to Office 365, you even have unlimited storage for working with Excel online.


OOffice365-Excel-1, EdTechTeacherne of the best features of Office Online and Office 365, however, is something that you won’t find on the traditional Microsoft desktop tools (at least not yet): the ability to collaborate in real time with others! No more emailing a file back and forth, you can simply click the “share” icon and either share via email address with view or edit privileges or share with a link (again view or edit privileges). If you share via link with editing privileges, the other user does not even need an Office Online or Office 365 account! This is a great way to collaborate with others who don’t have access to Microsoft products.

All of your changes are saved automatically in the cloud, so it’s perfect for a Mobile environment where you’re always on the go. The workbook will be stored in your OneDrive, so you can access it anywhere (online, app on your tablet or smartphone, or any computer)! The new Office Online tools extend Microsoft’s robust document editing tool to the web and is accessible from any device

Workshop for That, EdTechTeacher Summer WorkshopsCome Collaborate This Month in Boston!

  • July 9-10: Digital Portfolios
  • July 13-15: Enhancing STEM Curriculum with Technology OR Teaching English with Technology
  • July 16-17: Creating Maker Spaces OR Reading, Writing & Research
  • July 20-22: Technology in the Elementary Classroom OR The Chromebook Classroom
  • July 23-24: Differentiating with Technology OR Teaching History with Technology

View the Full Course Catalog at ettsummer.org

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Note-Taking in the Digital Age from Sabba Quidwai http://edtechteacher.org/note-taking-in-the-digital-age-from-sabba-quidwai/ http://edtechteacher.org/note-taking-in-the-digital-age-from-sabba-quidwai/#comments Mon, 29 Jun 2015 23:16:41 +0000 http://edtechteacher.org/?p=7294 Read more]]>

This post originally appeared on Physician Assistant Education Association’s blog

A great misconception that exists is that just because an individual — especially a young person — owns a device, they are “tech savvy.” As a result, we often assume students are familiar with best practices for using digital tools when, in fact, what happens is they tend to use in a substitution manner instead of a transformative one. In the recent article “The 4Ss of Note-Taking,” Beth Holland, an instructor with EdTechTeacher, presents a transformative approach to digital note-taking:

“Before making a blanket statement that one device may be better than another (e.g., pen vs. laptop) or calling into question what may be the best note-taking system, what if we approach the concept by identifying what is best for individual students? In other words, does the system…

  • Adequately support the students’ learning needs?
  • Allow students to save their notes to multiple locations?
  • Let students search for salient points?
  • Permit students to share with peers and teachers?”

>> Read about using Evernote, iAnnotate, and Paper 53 in the rest of this article.

An Educational Technology Course for Educators

If you would like to learn more about how to integrate technology into the classroom, we invite you to join Digital Literacy: Faculty Edition, our professional learning course available on iTunes U. Here we will explore how you can begin integrating a variety of tools to enhance and develop your curriculum and instruction, providing students with an interactive and engaging learning experience.

Do you have an experience to share or would you like to learn from others with iPads? Come learn with us in Boston!

EdTechTeacher CFP ettipad Boston

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How to Use iBeacons in the Classroom – Guest Post from Courtney Pepe http://edtechteacher.org/ibeacons-courtney-pepe/ http://edtechteacher.org/ibeacons-courtney-pepe/#comments Mon, 29 Jun 2015 11:14:15 +0000 http://edtechteacher.org/?p=7202 Read more]]> This guest post from Courtney Pepe (@iPadQueen2012) first appeared on Daily Genius.

This point in the school year is often a time of reflection for teachers, instructional technology coaches, and administrators.  Practitioners begin to think about ways to redesign their learning spaces and schools in the upcoming 2015-16 school year to encourage innovative teaching and learning, making this the perfect opportunity to introduce an emergent technology called iBeacons.  This technology, which works with iOS7 or iOS8 devices such as cell phones and iPads, allows students to react to pingable content that is presented in the classroom.  iBeacons are based upon the geo-location of the users: what that means in English is that if the student is close to an iBeacon device in the classroom or the hallway, the Bluetooth signal will cause pop-up notifications/content to be displayed on the device. Consider the possibilities of the physical space providing learning materials to the students! This piece will highlight how some of the early pioneers across the globe are adopting iBeacons in their schools.

Pioneer #1- Paul Hamilton (@PaulHamilton8)

  • Date of iBeacon Adoption – December 2013
  • Location – Australia
  • Brand of iBeacon Used – Estimote

It would not be a complete piece about the history of iBeacon technology without mention of Paul Hamilton, Head of Learning Technologies at the elementary level within Mathew Flinders Anglican College. He inspired the global education community with his creativity in this area. As he coached teachers and designed lesson for students, Paul used iBeacon technology to create learning zones within his school and connect via a game of hot/cold on the iPad.

Paul placed iBeacons in his school to notify students that they are in different “learning zones” in the library and the technology/coding area.  When students walk into the school library, the screen of their iPad turns icy blue showing them that they are so far away from the iBeacon – that they are “cold”.  However, as they get closer to the iBeacon,  the screen of the iPad the will turn from blue to yellow – letting them know that they are “warm” and getting closer to the learning zone.  Then when they get really close to the iBeacon, there is a pop-up notification on the iPad which directs them to the desired content.  Paul has this to say about the use of iBeacons: “they have created a learning environment where the learning finds the students instead of the students having to find the learning.”

At the elementary level, Paul uses iBeacon tech to promote active learning and curate exciting lesson plans which the young learners engage in through game based learning.  Eventually, the games take them to a new task like coding in Hopscotch on the iPad or selecting a book in the library based upon the iBeacon triggered book reviews created by their peers.  Also in the “art zone,” iBeacon tech creates a flipped classroom environment in which the  students learn specific art skills by watching customized video tutorials.

IBeacon-Pepe-EdTechTeacher , iPad

The iBeacon tech makes the iPad screen get “hot” as the student approaches the iBeacon. This is a 21st century interpretation of a traditional child’s game.

Pioneer #2 – Julie Wilcott (@WillcottJulie)

  • Date of iBeacon Adoption – November 2014
  • Location – Maine
  • Brands of iBeacons Used – rad Beacons and the Locly App

Julie first learned about iBeacon technology at the Apple Distinguished Educator institute in July of 2014 and was admittedly intimidated by the amount of programming required.  However, in October of 2014 she learned about rad Beacons and the Locly App which she felt made the iBeacon user experience much less intimidating.  In November of 2014, Julie integrated iBeacons into her presentation at the 2014 Boston EdTechTeacher iPad Summit, and since then has used the iBeacons in several different professional development settings including the Challenge to Change Conference in Italy and the Moosetech Conference in Maine.  Instead of asking a participant to scan QR Code or use a short link to access her presentation materials, when the teachers enter her PD space – whether she is in Maine, Boston, or Italy – they receive notifications that take them right to the presentation materials.

Julie loves the way that pingable technology has influenced her professional development presentations by allowing participants to easily access information.  She states the “pingable technology has made possible just-in-time learning,  specifically the ability for me to distribute content whenever or wherever I am.”

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Performance Based Beacon Learning Task, photo used with permission of Jonathan Nadler  @jnxyz

Pioneer #3 – Gavin Smart (@gavinsmart)

  • Date of iBeacon Adoption- Spring of 2014
  • Location: London, England
  • Brands of iBeacons Used: Estimote & Locly

Gavin Smart is the Assistant Director of Digital Learning at the Clevedon Learning Hub as well as a teacher of science for students ages 11-18.  His school integrated iBeacon tech with their Clevedon School Handbook App.

A student in his school created a series of  iBeacon notifications that would pop up to help new students become oriented to their learning environment.  In the past, a student would have to go to a web site or scan a qr code to find out what the teacher might want them to do upon entering the room. Now, their iPad knows when the student has entered the space because of the iBeacon and provides an instant pop-up directing them to the learning task as well as their content for the day.

The iBeacon technology helps to welcome visitors to the school and parents to events. Also, the staff designed iBeacon treasure hunts, enabling the faculty to create outdoor learning experiences as well as iBeacon independent circuit training in the sports hall.  Gavin says: “iBeacons have engaged students, staff, visitors in the school; the WOW factor really influences them to find more content and complete more learning tasks.”

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Student created iBeacon notifications linked to the school handbook app

Right now, I am going through the process of implementing iBeacon technology at the A. Harry Moore School of New Jersey City University.  Since we are a demonstration school, we frequently give tours to prospective parents, students, or potential interns.  Our building is almost 100 years old and visited by FDR, so I am currently working to use iBeacon technology on all five floors to provide various pop-notifications about the history of the building to give a sense of context when visitors are doing a building tour.  I am grateful to iBeacon technology for giving me the opportunity to connect the traditions of the past with our present; I am optimistic about what pingable technology can do in the classroom and school spaces of the present and the future.


Courtney Pepe will be presenting about Scannable, Pingable, and Wearable Technology this summer at ISTE 2015.

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Weekly Resources for third week of #ettsummer http://edtechteacher.org/weekly-resources-for-third-week-of-ettsummer/ http://edtechteacher.org/weekly-resources-for-third-week-of-ettsummer/#comments Fri, 26 Jun 2015 11:43:19 +0000 http://edtechteacher.org/?p=7269 Read more]]> What a week! We hosted 12 Summer Workshops from coast to coast in a variety of topics. Creativity with learning was pouring out of each session. We are happy to share with you what we have learned and shared with our participants.

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5 Ideas to Kickstart Your Summer Learning http://edtechteacher.org/5-ideas-to-kickstart-your-summer-learning/ http://edtechteacher.org/5-ideas-to-kickstart-your-summer-learning/#comments Fri, 19 Jun 2015 17:44:03 +0000 http://edtechteacher.org/?p=7244 Read more]]>

This post originally appeared on Edutopia.

To keep our students sharp over the summer, we often assign subject-specific reading, math drills, and projects. However, as educators, we also need to hone our own skills, develop new ideas, and reflect on our practice. Here are five ways to kickstart your summer learning.

  1. Construct Your Learning Archive
  2. Read for Inspiration
  3. Design Your Digital Space
  4. Redesign Your Physical Space
  5. Take On a Challenge

Continue reading on Edutopia…

There’s still time to learn with Beth this summer in Boston!

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