Monday, January 29, 2018

CCSD Bright Spot: Breakout EDU: Student Edition
Many of us are familiar by now with Breakout EDU.  If you aren't, check out the Bright Spots about Breakout EDU in the elementary classroom and in a high school journalism class.

Traditionally, teachers find Breakouts or create their own and present them to students to help them learn about a topic before a unit starts, to reinforce information learned, or as a team-building activity, to name a few. But how about having students create Breakouts for their peers?

This is exactly the task assigned to students by Librarian Dr. Michael Stanley and 8th Grade Reading Teacher Andrew Jinkens of Liberty Middle School. Students were learning about Utopian societies through reading, and were asked to create Breakouts for their peers to solve.

Check out the video below to learn more about this project:

For more information about Breakout EDU, please check out the following resources: 
Breakout EDU- Official Site
Introducing Breakout EDU- from James Sanders
Breakout EDU- from Rachel Porter

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

A New Way to Drive Google Slides

There's a new way to remotely "drive" Google Slide presentations and it's a game changer when it comes to mobility.  I'm hoping word has made its way around regarding these new possibilities, but just in case here are the resources you'll need to get going.  It's as simple as installing a new Chrome extension and accessing/bookmarking a website on your phone and/or computer.  That's pretty much it.

The extension: Search the Google Web Store for Remote for Slides.  (Here's a link to share, if needed.)  Once the extension is installed on your Chrome browser open a Google Slide deck and locate the "Present with Remote" button in the upper right hand corner of the screen:

Click on that button to start the remote "driving" process.

Next, visit  This can be accessed via a bookmark on a machine, tablet, or a mobile device.  In other words, anything with a web browser.  The site will ask for a unique six digit code for the slide deck.  That can be viewed on any slide within the presentation.  When the cursor reaches the lower left hand quadrant of a slide this menu pops up along the bottom of the slide:

Click on "Show ID & Start Remote", type in the six digit code at on the device which will be driving, and you should be good to go.  The presenter on the driving device has access to buttons which will allow easy navigation to the previous or the next slide within the deck.  Notice the useful running timer in the lower right hand corner of the screen as well.

In the upper right hand corner is a toggle for the presenter to access slide notes.  Here's a look at the screen with the notes option engaged:

NOTE: For those of us accustomed to using the "Esc" key to exit traditional present mode and to get back to edit mode, that will not work after the "Present with Remote" option is engaged.  Users, however, may get out of remote mode (if they choose) with the button on the far right hand side of the menu here:

But, as far as I've seen so far, to be able to go back and edit a slide the tab will need to be closed and opened again in edit mode.  This is the one and only "challenge" I have noticed with this new tool.

Thank you to Henry Lim for creating these new possibilities for Google Slide users.  Everyone I have shown it to has been excited and found it very easy to use.

Happy New Year everyone and please drive (your Google Slide decks) safely.

CCSD Bright Spot: 5th Graders Create YouTube Style How-To Videos Using WeVideo

When Technology Teacher Jen Sevy from Fox Hollow Elementary kept hearing her 5th grade students explain how they learned to do things they...