Tuesday, May 31, 2016


Typing.com selected as standardized keyboard program for CUSD students 1st grade-12th grade

www.typing.com has been selected by the Tech PCC district-wide for typing instruction next year.  With the ever growing requirements for students to type, including new common core writing standards and SBAC prompts, CUSD has chosen to move forward with typing.com as the standard program for next year.

Updates for Teachers Next Year

Teachers in grades 1st-6th grade can use the resources on typing.com for center work, computer lab time, or student free time.  Secondary teachers can assign and use in all areas where students support is needed.  PCC team suggestion was 20-30 minutes per week to help them build skills that they will need to be college and career ready.  The program has  sets of reports that let you know how your students are progressing and how much time they have logged.  All of the features will be available during training this next school year as well as a set of "getting started videos" teachers can view on their own time.

Engaging Curriculum for K-12/College

Your students will love our fun and entertaining typing curriculum. Featuring engaging exercises, interactive typing games, and positive reinforcement, Typing.com is perfect for all age ranges and skill levels.

Free & Unlimited

Typing.com is and always will be free. Unlimited classes. Unlimited students.

Grade & Track Students

Using our free Teacher Portal, managing your classes and students could not be easier. Coupled with Typing.com's Real-time Student Monitor, you can see exactly what your students are working on, in real time.

Single Sign-On & District Syncing

Skip the sign-up form, and log in directly using your Google Apps or Clever.com accounts. Clever will even sync your entire class roster automatically!  Both types have been set up and are ready to use for Central students.  Clever is recommended for students in 3rd grade and below because of the ease of use.

Typing Games Reinforce Learning

A host of exclusive typing games such as Keyboard Ninja and Tommy Q Zombie Defender keep interest peaked while reinforcing lesson content.

Aligned with Common Core

Typing.com's proven curriculum aligns with the Common Core State Standards Initiative for Writing, preparing your students for typing mastery and success.

Powerful Reporting

Access and export detailed student improvement and progress, with reports covering all levels of data.  Another great feature of Typing.com is our ability to roster classes to the program with Clever integration.  This link provides you with step-by-step directions for rostering your students to Typing.com and providing your students with easy access to the Typing.com site.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Front Row

Guest blog post by Frances Sias, 2nd grade teacher Biola Elementary School

Overview of Front Row:
  • Assignments can be given individually to students or they can continue their differentiated program at their pace.  
  • Manipulatives can be used within software and students have a mini-"whiteboard" to the right of each Math problem.  
  • Indania.jpg
    Idania is working on a math problem that involves area.
    Practice sheets can be printed and sent home as homework.  
  • Practice sheets are not simply "worksheets"!
  • Front Row creates a practice sheet-- with student's name on it-- of the Math concept students are working on that the student needs more practice with.  Wow!  Differentiation to the Max!
  • Free Front Row version allows for a max of 5 Reading/Writing assignments per month.

Joel is working on a math problem that involves
putting toy soldiers in order from greatest to least.
I have used some Reading assignments whole class on Promethean Board--especially when students were first beginning, so they could understand how they could use a Thinking Map to structure their reading and aid them in answering the passage.  Reports are available on all student work.  Front Row Reading gives detailed class report showing how each student answered and questions they missed.  Data can be used to create class groups based on students needs.  There are some great Inquiry lessons which are free and you can use whole class, but it you want more, school admin must purchase site license.  Detailed reports to parents are also provided.  Numerous data reports for teachers that aid in creating differentiated groups for peer to peer support or teacher center grouping.
Tiffany will write a short statement about the Statue of Liberty.
Front Row differentiates by assigning leveled reading articles.
I have been using it all year except for the Rdg./Wtg/Inquiry lessons.  Those were added later in the school year and my class started using them after Winter Break.  The Math portion has been used all year.  
I don't know if  it was because we were using Front Row Math all year,  OR  if it was because of their work on the Daily Math Challenge, OR if it was because of the other Math Apps we use daily in Learning centers,  OR if it simply was because we are always singing Math songs!!,  BUT....
my students went from 4 of 25 passing Math PTask #1  to 22 of 29 passing Math PT#3!

Raphael is working on an "SBAC-like" passage about sharks.
He reads the passage (at his reading level), and can highlight
words or sentences to refer to so that he can go back to it
after he reads the questions on the right side.
Thank you for letting me share my student's work and my feedback about Front Row!

If you are interested in learning more about Front Row and how to use this free program with your students visit their website https://www.frontrowed.com/.

Students logon to the Student Dashboard at https://student.frontrowed.com/#login.

Friday, May 13, 2016


Synergyse is a Chrome extension that puts a virtual guide into Google Apps, training you to be productive and stay up to date with changes.

Synergyse built a virtual coach inside of the Google Apps interface, built on Google Cloud Platform. With voice and text interactive modules that are searchable by topic within Google apps, Synergyse will help your teachers and students get up to speed quickly — including when new features are rolled out. The trainings are always up to date, thanks to the power of the cloud. Organizations that use Synergyse see on average 35 percent higher adoption across Apps products, meaning those organizations are more likely to be productive, collaborative and embrace digital transformation.

Product support these tools:
  • Google Apps training for Classroom, Gmail, Calendar, Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides, Sites, and Hangouts.
  • Automatic updates for all future features & apps
  • Unlimited usage

Enhance professional development.

Synergyse training can help teachers master Google Apps for Education, and count towards their professional development requirements. Administrators are able to generate detailed usage reports that include lessons and training hours.

Utilize as an effective teaching tool.

Many teachers use Synergyse as a teaching tool in their classrooms, allowing them to clearly demonstrate features in Google Apps for Education, and assign lessons to students to take at their own pace.

Look for the Synergyse icon in your favorite Google Apps for Education tools.  The number next to the symbol indicated the quantity of tutorials available for that tool.

When you click on the icon, the options will expand to include a list of the trainings available, as well as a search option.