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Department "Bits and Bites"

October 2018
Got Student Engagement???
Here are some samples of how technology is being used to engage students in learning in and out of the school day!
  • Classrooms throughout the district are communicating to classrooms around the world as participants in the Global Read Aloud program. Over the next few weeks, more than 1.5 million kids will get to experience a read aloud.
  • Turner Innovation Center is being put to good use throughout the day. Check out the video below to see how it is being used. Turner Innovation Center

September 2018


Seesaw is an online, student-driven portfolio tool that lets students share their learning using text, drawing, audio, video, pictures, and links.  Not only that, it allows parents to see their child’s work (as long as the teacher approves it). Due to the wide use of this program by teachers, the District decided to purchase the full version. 



Freckle is an adaptive math, English/language arts, science, and social studies tool.  In other words, when the students practice these content area skills, they are seeing questions at their current level.  Freckle will also grow with the students, so as they master those skills, they will begin to practice new skills. Freckle is available both at school and at home, so parents will be able to support their child’s learning. 



We keep an eye on the kids in our classroom, on the playground, and in the cafeteria...now with GoGuardian we can keep an eye on the students while they are on the Chromebooks.  GoGuardian is a “Chromebook Management” tool. It allows the teacher, to see each of the students’ screens while they are using the Chromebooks. It also keeps a record of the sites that they visited.  GoGuardian allows teachers to “lock” the students into a specific website (or set of websites).


Enda Kelly

Lastly, but certainly not least, we are excited to welcome Enda Kelly to the Technology Department.  Enda has joined D33 as the Lead Teacher for Instructional Technology for Leman Middle School.  Enda is originally from Ireland, and has spent the last 9 years working as an Instructional Technology Coach, and a Technology Teacher in another suburban district.  He is very excited to be part of District 33, and working with the staff to help serve their technology needs.

April 2018
There are a lot of exciting things happening in the classrooms with technology.  Learn all about it in the State of Technology presentation

February 2018

Beginning Level Programming

Students have been using Beebots to work on beginning level programming and mapping skills. The students designed maps of their school and programmed the Beebots to navigate the map. Students learned and continue to build on the cardinal directions, multiple step programming, collaboration, and problem solving.


3D printing offers students a true engineering and design experience. 

Throughout the first half of the year, our students have created items for other students and teachers to use. 

margin-left:.5in;margin-bottom:.0001pt'>One group of students created accessories for our programmable robots.  They analyzed how we currently use the robots and thought of (and created) accessories to expand the robots' learning possibilities. mso-add-space:auto'> mso-add-space:auto'>Another group designed geometric and natural design stamps for the 3rd graders at their building to use during their clay project in art. 

3D printing offers students the opportunity to work through the engineering design process while thinking creatively and collaborating with their peers.


Programming using coordinates

Students utilize all four coordinates of the coordinate grid while programming their "sprite" to write their name using the online block programming tool Scratch.



 September 2017

Department of Technology Overview

Over the last 5 years the Technology Department has made huge strides in bringing technology to the classrooms and district. Mr. Dave Venchus, Director of Technology, has gradually built up his department to support the needs of students, staff and families in the district. Currently this department consists of 13 other people:

3 - Lead Teacher for Instruction

· Help staff incorporate technology in the classrooms.
· Assist teachers in creating lesson plans,
· Co-teach
· Provide Professional Development and training

2 - Technology Systems Analyst

The Systems Analysts are the data miners. They are the
· Main support for eSchoolPLUS, the student information system
· Support for various data-driven programs (Home Access Center, Destiny, etc.)

2 - Technology Technician Level II

The Technology Tech Level II deal more with network issues and higher level troubleshooting. This includes:
· email setup
· wireless
· laptop
· SMARTBoard
· Chromebooks
· iPads
· Network issues

1 - Technology Technician Level I

The Technology Tech Level I deals with support for laptops, Chromebooks, iPads, SMARTBoards

4 - Computer Aide Advanced

The Computer Aide Advanced is your first line of defense for troubleshooting. Contact them first for any tech support issues.

1 - Secretary

 New Technology in District
· Added 1200 Chromebooks (now have 2400+ for students)
· Added 360 iPads (now have 720 student iPads)
· Added 29 SMARTBoards (now have 186 throughout the district)
· Rolling out online report cards (part of HAC)

What’s Happening in Classrooms?

· 4th Graders around the district have been using Makey Makey's to discover how to make electricity. Students use Chromebooks, playdoh, and the Makey Makey kit to build a circuit in order to conduct electricity.
· 2nd graders around the district have been learning about urban, rural, and suburban communities. Google Earth is being used along with Google Drive to zoom in on community and correctly label them.
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