Judson ISD's Technology Services & Instructional Technology News and Information



Microsoft Student Advantage Office 365 free for Judson ISD students

Judson ISD Technology Services is excited to be able toFree Microsoft Office offer Microsoft’s Student Advantage Office 365 for FREE via our Microsoft Licensing Agreement.  This new offering allows JISD students (ages 13 and above) to receive the following for installation on personal devices:

  • The latest versions of Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, Outlook, Access and Publisher
  • Installation on up to five PCs or Macs, and Office apps on other mobile devices including Windows tablets , Android, and iPad
  • 1 Terabyte of OneDrive cloud storage
  • Office Online

Students must use their JISD email address to sign up for this offering.  An example of a student email address is jisdstudent@student.judsonisd.org.
Please visit the following address to start the sign up process:

An email from Microsoft Office 365 Team (Office365@email.microsoftonline.com) will be sent to the student’s email address.  It will look similar to the image below.  Please click on the link named Complete Office 365 Education signup.  This will allow students to complete the signup process and log into the Office 365 Portal (https://portal.office.com).  Once inside the Office 365 Portal, students will be able to download the latest version of Office for Windows, Mac and setup mobile apps for smartphones and iPads.  The portal will also allow students to access Office Online Apps.

Microsoft is supposed to make a related announcement for staff in November. We will be sure to provide details once we have them.

by M. Davis

Tips and tricks for Teacher Access Center 3.1

  • Assignments
    • Assignment averages on the entry page do not average until the assignment has reached the due date
    • The assignment page has extra credit.  Make sure to use it towards total points not the total average
    • Adding assignments or copying assignments is easier to do on the entry page
  • Attendance
    • The official time for attendance for the elementary schools is 9:30 and the secondary schools is 10:30
    • Taking attendance and using the blank page on the home page allows all students to be marked present, but does not keep a teacher off the missing attendance submission report
  • Grades
    • A student’s grades or average can be imported from another class if the student has a sun icon by their name on the entry page
  • General
    • The student drawer can be found on the home page by clicking a student name in the roster or on the entry page by clicking the student name
  • Help
    • If encountering an issue click the ? (help button) at the top of the page and it can help you deal with the any issue you may encounter
    • If you still need help, please submit an incident via the JISD Help Desk in the MyJISD Portal

by J. Cortinas

Kahoot, Kahoot, Kahoot!

Kahoot is a new, free and easy game based classroom response system which allows teachers to ask thought provoking questions, students to take control of their own learning and is highly engaging.  “Using technology in your classroom will never be the same again.”

Using a simple drag and drop system, Kahoot lets users create quizzes, surveys or polls.  Launching Kahoot on the projector screen allows users to participate in real time game elements which increases engagement and motivation.  Learners  can answer questions collaboratively or individually or create their own questions which ultimately empowers learners to present and share their new-found knowledge to their peers, in a playful and social manner.

Kahoot is available on any web enabled device including smart phones, tablets, and computers. At the secondary level student devices may be used. Classroom computers can be used in the elementary setting if web based devices are not available.  For more information on how to integrate Kahoot contact your JISD Instructional Technology Specialists (mmartinez@judsonisd.org, anhernandez@judsonisd.org).

by M. Martinez

Want to try something new in the classroom?

With any job it’s easy to eventually find oneself in a rut, doing things the same way over and over. I know back when I was teaching, sometimes the pressures of grading, paperwork, and the real world meant that I didn’t try to teach a lesson differently or try something new with my students. Maybe I blamed it on the fact that I had four class preps, but no matter what the reason, it was always very rewarding to take time to try a new innovative lesson and see it work very well in the classroom.
The presentation below has some ideas for using some web based tools in your classroom:

Some tools to bring new life to your classroom from Steve Young


JISD Instructional Technology proficiencies

At Judson ISD, all professional staff are REQUIRED to take 6 proficiencies within the first two years of employment—Word 2010, Outlook 2010, PowerPoint 2010, Excel 2010, Publisher 2010, and Inspiration 8.  There are two ways to prepare for these proficiencies—attend a training class for the application or use the JISD Intranet training resources.

Attending a training session is not required, but attending an assessment session is required.

To access the training resources for the Microsoft applications and Inspiration 8 which include Independent Practice Activity and Training Scripts, do the following:

Þ Login to MyJISD Portal
Þ Click JISD Intranet
Þ From the Instruction tab at the top, select Instructional Technology
Þ On the left, in the Table of Contents, click the arrow next to Technology Proficiency Training
Þ Click an application name to find the Independent Practice Activity and the application Training Script

NOTE: The Inspiration link contains a training video, Independent Practice Activity & Training Script.
It is highly recommended that you use the Independent Practice Activity for all applications as a practice test, so that you can go back and review the Training Script as needed before registering for an assessment. The vocabulary component is important to study because no word bank will be provided on the assessment.  Once you are ready to take an assessment, simply register in eduphoria! Workshop.

All proficiency assessments and training for the 2014-2015 school year will be held in the Technology Lab at the Education Resource Center (ERC) unless otherwise noted in Eduphoria (see attached flyer).

If you require further information regarding the proficiency requirements or any of the preparation materials, please contact Anita Hernandez, Instructional Technology Specialist, via e-mail or phone (210-945-5554).

by A. Hernandez

Things to consider with free email services

Email services like Yahoo, Gmail, and Microsoft, are generally free and seem like great resources.  Have you ever thought about why they are free and offer you the ability to save so many emails without the worry of your mailbox getting full? Well, like any business, the services aren’t free and thus come with certain stipulations such as:

  • Privacy – If you aren’t paying for the email service there has to be some financial recoupment.  One of the ways to generate revenue is by providing your information to advertisers or similar businesses.  Each email service provider has a set of privacy policies which, admittedly, we all skim through if we look at them at all. 
  • Security – With the recent increase and spotlight on businesses that’ve had customer account information hacked, security has become a bigger area of concern.  You trust that an email service provider has the proper safeguards in place to protect themselves from these hacks. Unfortunately, like anything in technology, there is always the chance of a flaw being discovered and exploited.  A good safeguard is to ensure you don’t use the same password for services, such as email, as you would with your bank or other sensitive accounts. It may seem easier to remember only one or two passwords but you’ve just reduced the amount of time it’ll take a hacker to access your other accounts.
  • Forwarding – Have you ever sent yourself an email from your Judson email account to your personal email account? Maybe it was a “Partnership Perks” or a file to work on at home? Many of us have, (I know I have) but, have you thought about what you’re sending and what information the email contains? Is there anything that might be sensitive or of value to someone outside of Judson ISD? Please take a minute to review before forwarding emails to Judson email users and outside email services.

by C. Dean