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, 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