Thursday, November 8, 2012

New student account information

Welcome to the CVU Community! Your student will need to come down to the IT office as there are a number of accounts that we'll need to setup for him. He can check with his Core teachers and they'll get him sent in the right direction. Ultimately, he'll end up with four different accounts here at CVU:

A network log in account to log in to the computers here at school.

A Moodle account - this is where his homework and other class information will be found.

A Google Apps account for email, etc.

Currently, we don't have parental access for our Moodle page, but the majority of our courses are open to the public so you can see anything that the teacher posts. You won't be able to see any student work through the public log in due to privacy requirements. If you'd like to see your son's work in a class, you can ask him to log in and show you what he has done.

I hope this has answered your questions regarding this ticket. Please feel free to contact us via the helpdesk with any other questions.

Monday, November 5, 2012

More Tools for ESL1

Originally posted 9/ 9/ 2012

Looking back on my last post (about ESL 1: Communication), I realize I may have violated the first condition for some folks-- some teachers and students may want to start with something even quicker than shooting and sharing video.  Here are some ideas you to try that are easy to set up:
  1. VoiceThread. Upload a picture or file, give your students the link, and let the conversation begin!  At CVU, this has been used in world language classes to discuss famous Spanish paintings, for example.  Students can provide text comments, record audio comments, or even use webcams to provide video comments.
  2. Jing.  Jing is a free tool for recording screencasts.  Students can record their voices as they capture video of their computer screen.  They might explain how they solved a math problem using Geogebra or take the video on a tour of a house they designed in SketchUp.
  3. Audacity- It's free.  It's on all school computers.  Record audio, save as mp3.  Easy.

Tools for ESL 1

Originally posted 8/26/12

You: OK, Charlie, it's a new year and I want to try something new with technology!
My requirements:
  1. Easy to do
  2. Improves student learning
Me: I'm on it-- and I'll even arrange by ESL (our Expectations for Student Learning at CVU HS). Here goes:

ESL 1 Communication

Replace a written response assignment (essay, reflection, answers to questions, math problem, etc.) with an oral one.
Instead of--or in addition to-- having each student present to the class, use technology to capture the response.


tech tools
For audio, students can record themselves using computers, handheld digital recorders (see Jacob in 118), or their own smartphones.
For video, students can record themselves using webcams (the mini carts at CVU all have these built in), standard or Flip video cameras (see Jacob in 118), or their smartphones.
It is easiest to minimize the editing needed for this sort of task, so students should strive to get the response in one take.  They will find that each successive attempt at the perfect take will improve the quality of the response.
Important- Where students run into the most difficulty is understanding media file types.  They may need to use a video or audio editor to convert their recording to the proper format.  I'd be happy to come in and explain this to your class.
How do they share the recording with the class/teacher?  There are lots of ways to do this.  If your students are already blogging (I'll be talking about that when we get to ESL 2- Writing) , they might include the recording in a blog post.  Otherwise, an easy way to share is using Google Docs (now called Google Drive).  Students can upload their recordings and control the visibility.  Here's a how-to (for video).

Tag, you're it!

beatlestgOriginally posted 4/1/2010

I was just playing around with Tag Galaxy (try it, it's a blast!) and it got me thinking about how important it is that we teachers recognize and appreciate the shift in how information is being organized.
The following is from's review of David Weinberger's Everything is Miscellaneous:
Human beings are information omnivores: we are constantly collecting, labeling, and organizing data. But today, the shift from the physical to the digital is mixing, burning, and ripping our lives apart. In the past, everything had its one place--the physical world demanded it--but now everything has its places: multiple categories, multiple shelves. Simply put, everything is suddenly miscellaneous.
And here's the professor himself, explaining the concept.
It's worth watching (or reading the book), but if you're short on time, the basic concept is that we were brought up with a hierarchical organization of information- so, for example, to research The Beatles, our path might have been something like Arts->Entertainment->Music->Musical Groups->English Musical Groups->The Beatles.
...but The Beatles belong to more than one "category" of information.
The Beatles are: a rock band, a collection of songs, a haircut, the British Invasion, John Lennon's group, Yoko One, Liverpool, etc. , etc.  This is where tagging comes in.  Tagging allows us to attach all of these descriptions to the Beatles.
Earlier this year,  we  switched our school e-mail to Gmail.  All of the sudden, we didn't have to choose whether a particular e-mail belonged in the  "Curriculum" folder, the "To Do" folder, or the "Pedagogy" folder- with tagging (it's actually referred to as "labeling" in GMail), we put it iall those "folders."   And, since we can search by tags, we find it when we look for either Curriculum or Pedagogy (or To Do).
Let's help students become good "taggers."