Monday, May 5, 2014

New Google iPad Apps

Google recently released two new apps for iPads: Google Docs and Google Sheets. These apps work in conjunction with the Google Drive app that is already on our cart iPads, and many of our teacher devices. The good news is that Google promises to also release a Google Slides app soon, which would allow creation of Google Slide Presentations on an iPad - yay!

However, one major caveat of this new venture is that the Google Drive app itself no longer allows users to edit Google Docs or Spreadsheets. Google Drive remains an app on the iPad to show your files stored in the cloud, but if you attempt to edit a document, that document opens automatically in either the Google Docs or Google Sheets app.

This is particularly troublesome for anyone using our iPad carts for projects in their classroom and relying on Google Drive for storing partially completed projects or relying on Google Drive to share completed projects with the teacher.

The Technology Department is working on conjunction with the LMC Specialists to determine the best time to collect the iPads, transport them to the middle school and make the necessary updates. If you have the cart checked out and plan to use Google Drive, please consider revising your plans or letting your LMC Specialist know that you won't be using the iPads.

If you use Google Drive on your own iPad, you will need to visit the App Store and download two new free apps: Google Docs and Google Sheets.

If you have any questions, please contact Sarah Radcliffe

Friday, May 2, 2014

Become a Google Educator

Becoming a Google Educator: An Opportunity for CFAUSD Teaching staff

This semester, we have been able to offer many courses in Google Apps for Education (Gmail, Calendar, Google Docs, Drive, Sites, etc) after school as part of Google After Hours. The instructors for Google After Hours are “Google Qualified Individuals.” To achieve this certification, these teachers took part in a two-day training in the Spring of 2013, culminating with 6 multiple choice exams. Passing of these exams allows an individual to reach the status of Google Qualified Individual.

Google has since changed some of their qualification measures. Now, passing of exams in four required areas, plus at least one elective area achieves a status of Google Educator. Once you pass the exams, you will receive a Google Educator certificate and be off and running with a deeper understanding of Google Apps for Education and all it encompasses. You will be more able to begin working toward integrating technology with your curriculum in a way that allows more effective and efficient teaching.

All (Required):
  • Gmail
  • Calendar
  • Docs & Drive
  • Sites
At least one (Electives):
  • Chrome Browser
  • Chromebooks
  • Tablets with Google Play for Education
  • Implementing Google Apps
Benefits from Google:
  • certificate indicating completion of exams
  • option of applying for Authorized Google Education Trainer or Google Certified Teacher

Benefits from CFAUSD:
  • opportunity to attend paid training by (almost) Authorized Google Education Trainers from our district to help you with the material needed to pass the exams
  • exam fees paid by the district
  • demonstration of teacher leader qualities by attaining certification
  • opportunities to provide training to fellow colleagues starting August 2014
  • beneficial skills set important for applying for Chippewa Falls Innovative Teacher Grants for Technology

  • Training opportunity will take place June 23rd and June 24th. You are required to attend both days.
  • June 24th - July 31st work independently or in small groups to study for and pass exams
  • Week of July 28th work with Cara and Sarah on preparing for delivering August professional development

If you are interested in pursuing becoming a Google Educator, please fill in the following form with your information. We will get in touch with you in the next few weeks to discuss further. Teachers may be chosen based on curricular readiness and teaching area (grade, school, etc) upon recommendation of building principal. Further information can be found here: Google Certifications.

Thanks for considering. If you are interested, please fill out this form by May 18th.
Interest Form