Welcome to The Pirate D.L. Blog! We hope you find a lot of great resources for digital learning that you can use in your classroom.

Thursday, December 17, 2015


Santa is finalizing his naughty and nice list. 

Santa and his reindeer are celebrating all the children on the nice list this year!

Upload OR Create your own GIF at GIPHY!

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

HipHughes History

HipHughes History Channel on Youtube have upbeat flipped history lessons. Check it out:

The Practical Ed Tech Handbook

Thinking ahead for next semester? Check out some favorite digital learning tools to use for communication with students & parents, video creation, audio recording & publishing, informal assessment, and digital portfolios from Richard Byrne! Check it out below or download your own copy by clicking HERE

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Google Chrome TASKBAR

Please note, your Google Chrome may not be pinned to your TASKBAR.

In the event it is not, please take the following action to repin the icon once you have verified that Chrome has reinstalled successfully. Go to your START MENU (found in the lower left corner of your screen) > ALL PROGRAMS > Google Chrome > Google Chrome browser. Once Google Chrome opens, complete the action below:


Chrome Update
Starting first thing Friday morning (12/4/15), we will be updating Chrome on ALL desktops and laptops

Chrome will attempt install on start up.  However, you could see the following message please read the message:
The box will disappear and the install will begin after 5 minutes. Unless you click OK and then it will begin immediately.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Monday, November 2, 2015


Rally for Doodle 4 Google! 
$30,000 in college scholarship and a $50,000 Google for Education grant for your school!
It's as simple as drawing a sketch with the word "Google" in it and a 50 word doodle description! Check out the entry form by clicking HERE. Get your entries in before December 7, 2015!
Check out the GoAnimate video Mrs. Rous and I directed to advertise for students featured on the October 30th Pirate TV episode, Corinth Holders High School-JCS Facebook page, The Hungry Bookshelf Blog, and the "Contests Wall" in the CHHS Media Center! 
If you have trouble viewing the video, please click HERE.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

iBoss and Chromebooks

When students logon Chromebooks there is a JCS iBoss one time authentication prompt. All students should "Accept" this request, otherwise the Chromebooks functionality may be limited.  Students can and do cancel the authentication and the request prompt will come up at the next logon.  We advise all teachers to request that their students "Accept" the JCS iBoss SSO message when they see it to eliminate possible issues with the Chromebook and Internet access. 

If you have Chromebook issues such as limited and problematic internet access, pages unable to load properly, "spinning," etc., you may want to have the student logon to another Chromebook and verify they have accepted the request.  Likewise, you may want to logon to the device with your logon to see if the issues continue.  

Note: this is a one time authentication for students, they will not see it again.  Keep this acceptance process in mind with new students first logging on to a JCS Chromebook.  

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Students Drive Space

Are your students running out of disk space?

Just a friendly reminder that students are limited to 100MB of space on their home directory when they login. If your students are unable to save to their directory, please encourage them to remove old files and use Google Drive when possible.

Listen Current

(Shared with the permission from the editors of the JCS DL Blog )

This week we are sharing a wonderful web tool that provides teachers with engaging lessons tied to Common Core Standards that are based on National Public Radio media stories. Teachers can filter lessons by subject area or current events.

To get started, go to: https://listencurrent.com

Click on the join button in the top right corner to create your free teacher account.

Once you create your account, select lessons to view all lessons by subject area:

I'm going to look at the science lessons available:

You can click on any lesson to open it. I'm going to look at the lesson titled "An Imminent Thaw":

The lesson has a brief introduction and then an embedded audio story from National Public Radio. Each lesson has questions for student understanding. Additionally, most lessons have graphic organizers or activities linked to the story (red box in the image above).

Another wonderful feature in Listen Current are the linked assessments in Socrative. Each lesson has a short quiz pre-built in Socrative that you can use to check student learning (visible in the blue box above).

In addition to the subject area lessons, the current events section has new stories every week about national events such as discovery of water on Mars and the recent widespread flooding in South Carolina.

Listen Current is a wonderful resource to engage students and expose them to public radio. I hope you explore this tool with your students!

Monday, October 12, 2015

NCEdCloud for Students


I have posted these instructions on our CHHS Homepage under Announcements, but please share this information with your students! 

Student accounts for PowerSchool/Schoolnet are now managed by Rapid Identity which means that logins from last year and last year's method of accessing student logins may not work. According to DPI, students in grades 6-12 MUST claim their NCEdCloud account in order to access PowerSchool/Schoolnet.

We have prepared documentation for how 6-12 students can claim their accounts as well as how K-5 teachers can access their student's account information.

Thank you for your patience!

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Staff Resource Page in SharpSchool

I have opened up a Staff Resource Page for the faculty at CHHS. If you attended Mr. Bass's session during our last Professional Development Day, you are aware of the Staff page. This page is ONLY accessible for CHHS Staff members only. I will also house the "Good News to Share" questionnaire and the CHHS Directory under this page for easy access. Let me know if you would like anything else under this page. 

SchoolNet Sessons

Did you know that there are over 75,000 assessment items and 120,000 instructional materials available in Schoolnet?

Most RCD unit assessments are also available in Schoolnet so students can complete the assessment electronically and their grades will appear instantly in your gradebook.

Register today for one of our fall Schoolnet sessions to learn how to access and use these instructional resources with your students.

JCS Digital Learning Team is offering two sessions this fall:

Getting Started with Schoolnet:
Learn how to create assessments in Schoolnet and access over 100,000 vetted instructional materials aligned to North Carolina Essential and Common Core Standards. This session is intended for novice users and will cover the basics of designing and sharing assessments. This session is specifically for core content area teachers in grades 3-12.

Dig Deeper with Schoolnet:
Have you given an assessment in Schoolnet and wondered...ok what now? Join us in this session to dig deeper into the data analysis and reports available in Schoolnet. Learn about the new co-authoring feature to drive your PLC to the next level in creating common assessments and data analysis. This session is for users who have a basic understanding of creating assessments in Schoolnet and have given at least two assessments this semester to their students.

Register Today in My Learning Plan!

Friday, October 2, 2015

Sync GFiles to Sharp School Webpage

Syncing Google Files to the Sharp School Teacher Webpage

  1. Sign-in to your Google Drive
  2. Open the File you wish to sync to your teacher webpage.
  3. Click on File > Share

4.  Make sure you select “Anyone with the link can view” and COPY link.
5. Sign-in to your Sharp School Webpage
6. Staff Directory
7. Your teacher webpage
8. Go to your Document Container Page (or however you named it)
9. Click on Advanced > Switch to Design Mode
10. Under “Add New Item” drop down box, Select “link”
11. Type in the Name that you want to appear in the Document Container.
12. Paste the File Link
13. Click Add Link
Note: If you do not have a Document Container page, Go to your teacher Homepage> Page Properties> Add New Page> Document Container.
Also, you can organize your document container page by adding class folders by selecting in the “Add New Item” drop down and select “Folder”.

Any questions, please email me at megancox@johnston.k12.nc.us

Thursday, October 1, 2015

SMART Ink Document Viewer

You can use the SMART Ink Document Viewer to view and write or draw over your PDF files. You can navigate your files and magnify pages. You can also save and print your files, including your ink notes.

To start the SMART Ink Document Viewer
Select Start > All Programs > SMART Technologies > SMART Ink Document Viewer. * To open a file: 1. Press Open File (It will The Open dialog box appears. 2. Browse to and select the file you want to open. 3. Press Open.
To write with pen tools: 1. Pick up a pen from your interactive product’s pen tray or press an ink color button on your interactive pen display. 2. Write over your open file.


This week JCS Digital Learning Team is sharing a handy free online voice recorder that works on any device with an internet connection and has no account registration required. SpeakPipe is very simple to use and student friendly with minimal advertising and large buttons. 

Click on start recording.

Depending on your device, you will need to give SpeakPipe permission to use your device microphone and also for your browser. I had to allow the following two permissions (students should be able to allow access on their device). 

Here are the two permission screens that I had to allow:

Permission Screen 1

Permission Screen 2

When you see the microphone, you are ready to record (recording starts automatically)!

Once you are finished, click stop.  You will then be able to preview your recording. If you do not like it, click reset to record again.

Give your recording a name to save it to the server. It will be available for three months on SpeakPipe's server.

The last step is to share your recording. You can embed your recording directly on a web page, share the link to the recording, or click on the link to have the option of downloading your recording to your device.

Some ideas for how to use SpeakPipe:
  • Audio book reviews
  • Substitute teacher instructions
  • Foreign language conversation practice
  • Audio response to blog posts or discussion questions
  • Poem dictation
  • Interpretive readings
  • Explanation of solving a math problem
  • Science lab observations
  • Study aids
  • Reading fluency
  • Homework help

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Playing Music in the Classroom

Unless you are paying $25/month fee, staff cannot play Pandora through speakers for students. It is against copyright policy to play unless paying for licensing. However, stations that are streamed live such as iHeart Radio, QDR.com, etc. is allowed.

Chromebooks Allow iBoss

For the first time using Chromebooks, students must "allow" iBoss. If students do not click "allow" the student will have problems and it won’t show up again for awhile.

Friday, September 18, 2015

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Digital Citizenship

Digital Citizenship by Megan Cox on GoAnimate

PLICKERS for real time assessment!

  • Captures real time formative assessment without students needing an electronic device!
  • The teacher prints off cards (one time) for students to hold up while he/she scans the room with an iPad or Smart device.
  • Students hold the card one way for A, B, C, and D.

Friday, September 11, 2015

PowerSchool Using Two Active Windows

It's worth a try.....

To help with the issue of having to close all tabs and the browser when kicked out of or signing out from PowerSchool, it is suggested that 2 separate Chrome browsers be opened so that you do not need to close active tabs you may be using for teaching. Below, you will find step be step instructions on how to complete this task.

Open Google Chrome however you normally would. 

Through task bar

Inline image 1

Through Start Menu (Start>All Programs>Teachers Menu>Google Chrome)

Inline image 2

After you have one Chrome open, you will have to open the next one by going through the start menu

Start>All Programs>Teachers Menu>Google Chrome

Inline image 3
 Use one browser for teaching and one for Power School.

Extending your Desktop

GREAT NEWS! Have you ever wondered how you can display your icebreaker on the Smartboard and still do your attendance at your desktop without using a remote?

Extending the desktop on your computer will allow you to display one window on the computer while at the same time displaying another on the Smartboard.

In order to extend your desktop hold the Window key and the P key at the same time.

windows key.jpg
Windows Key

This will bring up the following display.

Display settings.png

Click on the choice that says Extend.

This will allow you to drag Smart Notebook or any other window to the right of your screen, which will then display on your Smart Board but not your computer desktop screen.

Note: If the Smartboard is set as the primary display, you may change the setting to make the monitor the primary display. The following instructions are based on which type of graphics card is installed.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Google Docs and Classroom

Google released new updates yesterday for Google Docs and Classroom. Google developers have been hard at work over the summer making Google even more useful for education. Please see the post below from the Google blog for all the details.

Schoolwork, minus the work

Writing papers is now a lot easier with the Research tool in Docs for Android. You can search Google without leaving Docs, and once you find the quotes, facts or images you’re looking for, you can add them to your document with just a couple taps. That means less time switching between apps, and more time perfecting your thesis statement.

With Voice typing, you can record ideas or even compose an entire essay without touching your keyboard. To get started, activate Voice typing in the Tools menu when you're using Docs in Chrome. Then, when you’re on the go, just tap the microphone button on your phone’s keyboard and speak your mind. Voice typing is available in more than 40 languages, so we can help with your French homework, too. VoilĂ !

Do more, together

We’ve made it easier for you to tell what was added or deleted in Docs—and who made the changes. Now when you’ve left a document and you come back to it later, you can just click “See new changes” to pick up right where your classmates left off.

A year ago, we launched Classroom to save teachers and students time and make it easier to keep classwork organized. Today we’re launching a Share to Classroom Chrome extension to make it easy for teachers to share a website with the entire class at the same time—no matter what kind of laptop students have. Now the whole class can head to a web page together, without losing precious minutes. 

Employee Check Stub

We now have Time Keeper / Employee Check Stub up and running.    This site is temporarily only available inside the school network. (Note: We are working diligently to make it available outside our network soon and will keep you updated.) 

Here is the link to ​Time Keeper / Employee Check Stub:
These links are also on the JCOC page and there is a link to detailed instructions there as well.  Employees must be signed into their school account to see these directions.

The links to Time Keeper & Employee Check Stub (one in the same) are located under Online Connections for Staff on our JCS webpage.  

Steps to access Time Keeper / Employee Check Stub:
*On the Login Screen, the employee enters their employee ID # and clicks ENTER (See your bookkeeper, Mrs. Price, if you do not know your employee ID#)
*On the next screen, the employee enters their PIN # and clicks ENTER (their PIN number is the last 4 digits of their SSN or last 5 digits of their SSN if 0 is the 1st number in the last 4)  
*The screen will then appear for the employee to check their earnings, deductions, etc.  
*Once you are finished, be sure to logout.  ****If the employee does not logout, the system will automatically time out in 60 seconds so the employee's information is not accessible to anyone else.

Each employee will want to change their PIN once they have logged on to a unique 4 digit number only they will know.  To do this, they will log on, look to the menu on the left, look under the Employee Profile Title, Click Change PIN.

Very Important:  Do not give anyone your ID or PIN or write it down for someone else to see.  It will give them access to all of your personal financial information.

If you are unsuccessful in the process given from Business with logging in, try entering your employee ID # for your ID & PIN.  If it still doesn't work, please let your school's bookkeeper, Mrs. Price, know.  You will get locked out after 3 failed attempts. 

Thursday, September 3, 2015

CHHS Teacher Webpage Report Card

Webpage Checklist 
DUE 9/4/15 @ 8AM

1. Syllabus for each course you teach.
2. Testing Schedule Process Posted.
3. "Contact Me" Template that is active.
4. Tutorial Schedule and Location
5. Method of posting assignments 
6. Profile Professional Photo

A: Absolutely Fabulous! Over the top! Parents must love you!
All required information is posted. Easy to follow. Additional interactive tools are being utilized.
B: Very Good. Has all required information plus a little extra. (Ex. Teacher Bio, link to Blog, Google Classroom, etc.)
C: Adequate. Has only the required information. 
D: Work in progress. Missing some of the required information. 
F: Get busy! Webpage is still in Latin.