Renewable Energy Data


#edtech #edreform #renewableenergy

Students in elementary and middle school science classes across Poudre School District have been using Vernier Software & Technology probes and sensors. These sensors enable teachers and students to collect authentic data on computers for deep and detailed analysis. The data collected is accurate and better demonstrates to students how scientists perform and analyze similar experiments in the real world.

Students at Dunn, Bennett, and McGraw elementary schools are using GPS units to find weather investigation stations in the wilderness.  Students are collecting data and making conclusions based on that data. Rather than doing a lab that mimics being outside, studying weather, students are actually going out and collecting the data themselves.
Middle School students at Lesher and Cache la Poudre have been investigating the factors that affect wind and solar power generation. The data they collected ranges from how the blade angle on a wind turbine can affect the energy output, to how the distance from a light source changes effectiveness of a solar panel. Teachers are making instructions interactive and easy to follow using Pear Deck, which allows for more open-ended inquiry investigations and student-driven learning.

If you are interested in checking out science probes and getting help with their use in your classroom contact the Ed Tech team. Elementary teachers it is no too late to sign up in Avatar for the Elementary Vernier training on Nov 9 (4th grade) and 10 (3rd and 5th grade).  IMG_0201 - Copy

Where to Find Resources

#innedco #edtech #techtips

Sometimes it can be hard to keep track of all the technology resources PSD has to offer.  In this screencast, we show where some commonly used resources can be found on the Poudre School District website.

Principles for Fair Use in Journalism

#innedco #edtech #copyright

The following post if from guest blogger, Herb Saperstone of PSD’s own Channel 10.

The Center for Social Media has excellent information regarding fair use in the context of the ever-expanding landscape of online media. American University Law Professor, Peter Jaszi says, “Limited but significant use of preexisting copyrighted material in our own information activities and Is protected in copyright doctrine of fair use.” Student projects, media critiques, news reporting, social-oriented journalism, etc. can and must find ways to use copyrighted materials.  Video courtesy of Center for Social and Media Impact


New Functionality Added to Google Forms

#web20 #google #googleapps

A couple of months ago, Google added some functionality to the Forms section of Google Apps. These changes have recently been added to anyone with a Google EDU account. Users can now add images and dates/times to their forms. Check out this screencast to see the new changes!

Embed Presentations

#edtech #web20 #edchat #googleapps #elearning

Do you have presentations or class notes that you’ve created in PowerPoint or Google Presentations?  Would you like these notes to be available to your students anywhere?  You can use embed codes to upload your class notes to your class wiki or BlackBoard Page.

In this blog post, I will guide you through how to upload a PowerPoint presentation to Google Presentations and embed it into your class’ BlackBoard page.

The first step is uploading your PP into Google Presentations.  Once you’ve logged in to Google Drive, click the red “up arrow” in the upper-left part of the screen.


Next, select “files” and navigate to your PP presentation.

Once your file is uploaded, open the presentation and go to “file>publish to web“.pub2web

A menu will come up with a variety of options.  Pick the options that work best for you and your class.  About halfway down the menu, there is an “embed code”.  Copy this code (press Ctrl + c or right click).  Now, navigate to your class’ Blackboard page.

Click the content button where you would like to add your presentation.  Under the “Build Content” tab, select “Blank Page”.  Add your title to and click the “Toggle HTML Source Mode” button (it looks like this: <>).  With HTML enabled, past the Embed code that you copied earlier. Paste the code after the <div> tags and you’re good to go!  Your students now have access to their class notes from your BlackBoard page.

Laptops as Clickers

#edtech #web20 #edchat #clickers  #elearning

Using “clickers” or electronic response systems can be a great way to gather data and give formative assessments to students.  Until recently, schools wanting to use response systems needed to purchase expensive software and equipment.  Education software companies like Promethean, CPS, and SMART all manufacture “clicker” software and hardware.

Clicker software and hardware, in the traditional sense, can now be replaced by technology that may already exist in the classroom.  Teachers and students can now use laptops, netbooks, and smart-phones as clickers thanks to some new web tools.  Best of all, most of these web based tools are free to use.

Once such web tool can be found at soclogo

The front page states, “Engage the class using any device” and they mean it.

On the website, you can either be directed to a log-in for teachers or students.  The sign up process is simple and free for teachers.  Once logged in, teachers will get a room number.  They can provide that room number for students using the “student log-in” and go from there!  The whole process is very simple and user friendly.

From the teacher home page, teachers have to option to create quizzes in advance or give questions “on the fly” as a single question activity.  SQAs are a great way to gather quick, formative data on your class, take a vote, or give a “ticket out the door”.   The format of the SQA can be True/False, short answer, or multiple choice.

If teachers create a quiz ahead of time, they have the same options for question formats but with a little more functionality.  Quizzes can be multiple questions and run as student-paced or teacher-paced.  Teachers can also add image content to their questions and share their quizzes with other teachers.

One of the best functions of the quiz-based activities is that teachers can add correct answers which will, in turn, give students immediate feedback and export results to an Excel spreadsheet.

Socrative makes it easy to replace clickers with laptops, netbooks, and smart-phones making it a very user-friendly and viable option as an assessment tool.

Flubaroo to Grade a Google Form

#edtech #web20 #edchat #google  #elearning

A few weeks ago,  we posted about using Google Forms.  Google Forms are a great way to collect information without the need for paper.  Teachers can use Google Forms to give students formative or summative assessments.  The benefit is that the information is automatically organized into a spreadsheet.  Another added benefit to Google Forms are “Scripts”.  One such script, called Flubaroo, will automatically grade a spreadsheet form for you with only a few simple inputs.

To get Flubaroo, head to a Google Form spreadsheet that’s open and navigate to Insert>Script.

insert script

Next, you’ll want to do a search for “Flubaroo” in the search bar and click “install”

searchflubarooOnce installed, you will notice that “Flubaroo” is now a menu item.


For Flubaroo to work, it needs a reference row or a “key”.  This can be one of the    rows in your spreadsheet.  Teachers will often take their own test so that it populates the first row of the test.  From that point forward, they have an easy way to grade the test/quiz.

After the quiz is graded, there will be a new tab at the bottom (similar to Microsoft Excel) called “Grades”.  Flubaroo automatically creates a spreadsheet with total correct/incorrect, % out of 100, and many other useful pieces of information.  If the teacher has the student input their email address as one of the row items, the teacher can immediately send the student their grade and feedback.

With a little work up front, using Google Forms with Flubaroo can save a lot of time for teachers.

Be sure to check out for more information.

“Amazing Race” with Google Presentations

#edtech #web20 #edchat #google #elearning #googleapps

Looking for new and creative ways to use Google apps?  Google Presentation is similar to Microsoft PowerPoint in form and function, with one key difference;  Google Presentations allow users to collaborate and create in real-time.

This opens up a whole new realm of possibility for you and your students across content areas.  Google Presentations are available under the “Create” button in Google Drive.


The “Amazing Race” uses Google Presentations,  Google Forms, and Google Docs in a creative way.  Students are given a research topic (such as famous scientists or countries in Africa)  and a slide in the presentation.  They then research their topic and create a slide with facts and clues about their topic.  After an entire class worth of students creates individual slides, the teacher has an entire presentation made.  From there, the teacher creates a Google Form based on slide number.  Students look at other students’ slides in the presentation, investigate the facts and clues, and fill out their answer in the Google Form.  The students usually work in pairs and have to collaborate on their answers via a Google Doc (they aren’t allowed to talk during the “race”).

If this all sounds a little complex, check out our extended video podcast by clicking the link below.

Amazing Race with Google

The first 7:25 of the video goes over a description and a real example of it being used in a PSD classroom.  In the rest of the video, Ben Johnson goes over a detailed explanation of how to create this fun and engaging activity for your classroom.

The “Amazing Race” utilizes many Google apps and is a fun and engaging way to integrate 21st century skills into your classroom.

Google Fusion Tables

#edtech #web20 #edchat #google #elearning

Have your students create custom intensity maps with the new Google Fusion Tables.  Check out the screencast “how to” from our own Ben Johnson!

How to make a “Google Fusion Table”

Check out another video of Google fusion tables in action!

Google Fusion Tables in Action

“Survey Says” Use Google Forms

#edtech #web20 #edchat #google #elearning

Happy New Year!  This month we’re going to be looking at some of the many tools that educators have available via Google.
School administrators, party planning teams, or department heads often need feedback on a particular issue.  It can be difficult to gather all that information within meetings due to time constraints or absences.  As an easy way to gather this information, consider using Google Forms.

Head to and select “Drive” from the top menu bar.  Sign in using your google account (or create one)

driveformsYou will see a blank “Untitled Form”.  You can create your questions (check the “question type” pull-down menu) and change the theme from this page.  You can also add more questions by clicking the “Add idem” button in the upper-left portion of the page.

click the image to go to the actual form and take the survey!

As you work on your Form, you will notice a link at the bottom of your page where you can view your form as it would appear to whomever you share it with. That is the link that you can use to share the form with others (feel free to shorten it with or Tinyurl!)

The results will be exported as a spreadsheet which will be viewable from your Google Drive account under “My Drive”.  Here’s how it looks:


As people take the quiz or survey, the information gets populated within the spreadsheet.  There is quite a bit you can do from here as well.  By clicking the menu “Form>Edit Form” you can go back to editing your form.  There’s also an awesome data analysis tool available by clicking “Form>Show summary of responses”.

You can also send the form via email from this page.  The form will automatically be embedded in the email, increasing the chance that it will actually be completed.

There are a myriad of other uses for Google Forms.  Many PSD teachers use Google Forms in their classrooms as an invaluable assessment tool.  Here, we have only scratched the surface so go play and see what you can discover!