New for the 2014-15 School Year
Yikes. It's August already. I don't know about you, but the summer feels like it is flying by. I hope it has been a restful time for all of you, a time that will give you the energy to jump in to a new year with both feet and a hero's cape around your shoulders.
Of course, I know many of you are already starting to gear up for the fall, and it's nice to know what to expect when you return. So here is a list of some of the tech changes to help you get started on your preparations.
iPad return/rollout for ALL students will be Thursday, September 4.
We have created a B-adjusted schedule for this purpose. Study will be reduced to 30 minutes. The extra 30 minutes will be relocated to the end of the day and combined with the Activity Block to create a time slot for return/rollout, which will be conducted in TA rooms. Sophomore, Junior and Senior TA returns will be short and those students should hopefully be released early. Freshmen rollout will understandably take longer. Further details will be provided during Inservice Week.Yikes. It's August already. I don't know about you, but the summer feels like it is flying by. I hope it has been a restful time for all of you, a time that will give you the energy to jump in to a new year with both feet and a hero's cape around your shoulders.
Students will be able to choose their own planner tools.
As you know, SMA will not provide hardcopy planners this year. After reviewing the available options and the faculty feedback, we've decided not to buy a complicated digital planner app. Instead, students and families have been encouraged to either buy a hardcopy academic planner (which are easily obtainable in a variety of forms from office supply stores, bookstores, Target, Fred Meyer, etc.) or have the student choose a digital tool (the basic calendar app, a homework planner app, etc.) Faculty are encouraged to check in with and advise students as needed about their choice of tools.
Important--as we will discuss during Inservice, the best organizational tool is one we already have--Schoology! It will be extremely helpful to students if all faculty create and use Schoology pages and post major deadlines on the Schoology calendars for all classes. See the Schoology Tips page for more details.
Changes to functions and apps.
Students will no longer be able to access iMessage, Airplay or Game Center on their iPads. Although this will not completely remove all distractions, it will limit some of the more egregious ones. (Of course, as we all know, our students will always find ways to be distracted, so being mobile in our rooms will still be our best option.) But we will also be loading a variety of exciting new general use apps on all iPads. We will go over these during Inservice, but in the meantime, check out the "Navigating the App Jungle" post for details to help get you started.
Exciting new Tech PD opportunities...details coming soon.
We've been working hard this summer on developing options for Tech PD this year. Your feedback on the faculty survey was extremely helpful in this regard, so thank you to all who participated. Some of these options will be revealed during Inservice, and others will become available as the year progresses. And there will be opportunities to earn prizes along the way!
If you have questions or need some assistance as you get started, please email us. And let me know if there are other resources you would like to see on this site. We look forward to seeing you in August!
8/5/2014 09:20:04 am
Alyssa - thanks for all of your hard work on this. The site looks great! I found the information I was looking for quickly and easily. LOVE it! Thanks so much.
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"I am passionately curious..."
Albert Einstein called himself this, and I love the idea. I too am passionately curious about what other great minds are creating and sharing. I have curated here some thought-provoking resources to assist our amazing SMA faculty as they progress in their 1:1 iPad journey.
Looking for more resources? Check out my Pinterest boards below...