Friday, April 24, 2015

Internet Filtering for Teachers Now Allows YouTube

Over the past week we've been testing a different way to implement two-tier internet filtering such that we can offer YouTube access to teachers while restricting it to students. We have now rolled out this solution to all teachers on campus.

This service is tied to the WiFi card in your school-issued laptop, and will not work for personal devices. Here's how it works:

1. You will need to visit https://www.youtube.com to access YouTube (note the "s" after "http"). You should see the YouTube page load:

2. If you DON'T put in the "https://" then you'll see an error like the one below:

3. Similarly, in ClipGrab you also need to use an "https" address, not "http":
4. If you use an "http" address you'll get an error as follows:
Happy YouTubing!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

HB235: Creating Webpages with Google Sites

PowerPoint is the most misused tool in ed tech. How many PowerPoints have you see where the student has tried to cram all the information they know onto the slide, then completely neglect their speaking?

Don't get me wrong - cramming information into a product has its place in the classroom. Just not in Powerpoint. If you want to give students the opportunity to synthesize what they know in a variety of formats (written, visual, etc), then consider asking them to make a website.

HB250: Intermediate Video Production

Devices like tablets make it easy to shoot - but not to shoot well.
Video projects are fun to make, can assess students' content knowledge, and help them practice new skills.

Too often, they are also poorly done. The fact that having a phone or tablet makes it easy to film something does not also mean that it is easy to make a good video.

There are, however, easy-to-teach principles that will help your students shoot and edit great video. This session taught us how.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

HB131: Advanced Gmail, Hangouts, Calendar, and Surveys

For some, having Google is limited to sending and receiving emails (using Gmail) and maybe using Drive. Yet Google offers so much more to help teachers and students communicate and organize their time much better.

Gmail has features that makes it easier to organize and searching for emails. Hangouts (formerly Google Chat) is a useful communication that allows users to send quick messages to coworkers in real time, thus making it possible to communicate more quickly and easily than with email. Hangouts also has the added feature of group hangouts so staff meetings and discussions can take place wherever you are!


Google Calendar helps one to stay organized and to collaborate with others. And with Google Forms teachers can quickly create surveys to gather data or even make quizzes!

HB120: Powerful Presentations

Before we tell our students to write essays, we teach them to write paragraphs. Before we tell them to play soccer, we teach them how to handle the ball. Before we tell them to do a science experiment, we teach them about safety and procedures. Yet so often we tell them to do presentations without actually teaching them about how to present. And knowing how to make a Powerpoint is not the same thing as knowing how to present. In this session, we learned about how to create and deliver powerful presentations.