This week I am sharing Flipgrid with you. This video discussion tool is great for technology integration in any subject area or context. It embraces student voice. Simply create a grid for your class, add a discussion topic, and curate short video responses from students. Flipgrid is a great tool to use for exit tickets, assessment, reflection, debates, and more. It brings that social media feel into the classroom, too. Here are a couple Flipgrid examples from PD events hosted in West Bloomfield this past summer. Check out #FlipgridFever to see how other educators are leveraging Flipgrid in their classrooms.


Copyright & Chromebook Care

This week I am sharing Search Creative Commons with you. Copyright is a very important topic when it comes to digital citizenship and it is especially important to teach students best practices. Copyright enables people to say who can share and reuse their creations. Credit should always be given where credit is due. You can find CC-licensed content by searching Creative Commons or by using Google’s Advanced Search and filter the results by usage rights.

For example, when students search for images within a G Suite tool such as Google Slides, those results are labeled for reuse with modification. This is why those search results look different from a regular Google images search. Didn’t know you could search images directly in G Suite tools? Heres how…

When you insert an image, a pop-up window appears.  Choose Search in the top bar.  This eliminates the need to copy and paste images from another window.

Chromebook Care Poster

Please feel free to print out this Chromebook Care poster to hang in your classroom.

Bonus Tool!

https://classroomscreen.com/ Classroom Screen is a free web-based tool that you can use on your interactive white boards.  Two of my favorite features are the timer and the random name generator.

Digital Citizenship Week + iPhone video tip

It is Digital Citizenship week and I want to share Google’s Be Internet Awesome resource with you. There is a curriculum as well as the Interland game. It is imperative that we teach students to be safe and independent explorers in a digital world. Also, don’t forget to explore and share this 13 Reasons Why Digital Citizenship Matters resource with parents.  I’ve included more #digcit resources below if you wish to explore more than Be Internet Awesome.



Everfi Digital Literacy and Responsibility

Videos to help your students understand digital citizenship

Did you know?

You can take pictures and video simultaneously on your iPhone. To do so, open the camera like normal, go to video mode, start recording. While the recording is going, you will see a white circle button you can tap while the video is recording. When you tap the button, still pictures are taken. When you stop recording, both the video and the pictures are added to the camera roll.

Crossbraining, Hyperlinks, & Right Clicks

This week I want to share Crossbraining with you. This is a structure for digital storytelling that documents everyday learning in 45 seconds or less. This structure is a completely different way of showing proficiency and is a great way to manage PBL projects. The finished videos show the 4 steps of planning, performing, iterating, and reflection. Crossbraining is not limited to using GoPro cameras. You can adopt the Crossbraining structure and create videos using other recording tools such as Screencastify, iMovie, Splice, Quik, Clips, etc.

Tech Tip: #1 How to hyperlink

These past couple weeks I’ve been working with students showing them how to create a hyperlink. In whatever Gsuite tool you are using, select the text you want to make a link. Click the Insert link button (Ctrl+K) or right-click the highlighted text and click Link. Paste the address you want to link to in the Link field and click Apply.

Some creative examples:

  • Student conferencing Google Sheet Checklist where each student’s name links to a separate Google Doc of conferencing notes
  • ePortfolio table of contents in Google Slides- When you click on the item in the table of contents, it jumps to the respective slide number.  When you click on a link it opens another project or document in a new tab.
  • Choose your own adventure story in Google Slides- When you choose what happens next in the story, it jumps to the respective slide number
  • Bookmarks in Google Docs- When you click on the bookmark it takes you to that part of the document

Tech Tip: #2 How do you right click on a Chromebook?

Tap on the track pad with two fingers simultaneously.

Making your own Breakout EDU

This week I want to share with you the resources that you can use to make your own Breakout EDU game. While Breakout EDU has many open sourced pre created games, I encourage you to truly make your clues fit with your curriculum and what you are teaching. They also have open sourced digital Breakout EDU games that you can do without the physical box with locks. You can create a digital Breakout EDU on your own, as well.

What is Breakout EDU? Check out this video to learn more. Read about #BreakoutEDU on Twitter.


The tool I have to share with you this week is called Everfi. It is free and they offer several short online courses that connect learning to the real world. Below, I’ve highlighted just some of the course they have:

Future Goals (Math or Science edition)- Connects learning to hockey and the Detroit Red Wings. The timing of this is great with the debut of Little Caesar’s Arena!

Ignition (Digital Literacy and Responsibility)

Healthier Me (Wellness fundamentals)

Endeavor (STEAM career exploration)

Vault (Understanding Money)- Covers economics, math, CTE

I encourage you to try it out.

Twitter tip of the day: How do I follow a hashtag?

A hashtag is a word or phrase preceded by a hash or pound sign (#) and used to identify messages on a specific topic.  There is no “Follow” button for hashtags.  Simply just search the hashtag (ie: #onlywb or #wbsdpln) and read away!


The tool I have to share with you this week is called Classflow. This is a free, cloud based tool that you should use to create interactive lessons on your interactive white boards. Promethean is going to discontinue supporting ActivInspire. I encourage you to create an account. There is a gallery of free open sources lessons that you can use, in addition to creating your own. Student devices can also easily be connected to your lesson through a simple code that they enter at classflow.com/student.

My other computer costs $35

Last week, I was lucky to participate in Picademy at the Ann Arbor District Library and am now a Raspberry Pi certified educator! This was an amazing experience to connect with a cohort of like minded educators from all around the globe and learn physical computing. Our instructors were stellar! Raspberry Pi used to be intimidating to me but thanks to them, now I can see its many affordances. Raspberry Pi has a variety of educational resources. I am excited to start integrating this in my school district and share it with the rest of my technology integration team, administrators, teachers and most of all, the students! I encourage you to try it.

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One of the most powerful activities we did was learn how to transition from coding in Scratch to Python. I loved the way this activity was scaffolded and it was a great way to transition from block coding to text language. I want to do this activity with students so that they can make connections between the two. That feeling of hooking the Raspberry Pi up for the first time and making a light illuminate is incredible! To make it light up again in a different way made me feel extra accomplished.

We explored many different components and projects over the course of two days. I learned how to use the camera, button, motion sensor, motor, sense hat, Sonic Pi and servo motor. I was able to make several iterations of a photo booth, a ferris wheel, pixel emoji art, scrolling messages, and music. We also played around with orientation, humidity and temperature.

My favorite project was The Beethoven Project. I worked with a small group to make an automatic page turner for sheet music. As we started to brainstorm, we realized that this invention could also work as an assistive technology for individuals who have a limited range of motion, too. By the press of a button, the page turns. We would want our next iteration to be able to flip the same page in reverse and be able to flip multiple pages. This was my favorite project because we did not use the servo motor in any previous activities and we figured out how to use it.  I wrote the code for this project and learning the code for servo motors was not easy. I was proud of myself for making the Raspberry Pi do what we wanted it to! This activity was different because we weren’t writing a predetermined code and altering it. Our code was new, unique and I wrote it!  Check out tweets from The Beethoven Project team below.



Summer Learning Resources

Have you heard of MeL.org?  It’s a free e-library full of free resources.  There are games for all grade levels, college prep help, resources for staff of all grade levels. There are so many resources! Check out their summer guide here:  bit.ly/MeLSummer.

Some other great summer resources to share:

  1. Camp Wonderopolis
  2. DIY.org
  3. 13 Reasons Why Digital Citizenship Matters This is great for parents, students, and teachers.