Thursday, March 9, 2017

PDH (formerly CPDU) Credit for Apple Teacher

On Friday, February 17, 2017, teachers of Barrington 220 students in Grades 6–12 participated in a variety of breakout sessions as part of a district professional development day. Over 70 teachers signed up to participate in a breakout session dedicated to Apple Teacher, an online program created by Apple to help teachers learn the basics of Apple devices and apps.

Among Apple Teacher participants, all signed up for the program, downloaded at least one digital book from the iBooks Store, and began the learning on at least one of the topics. The vast majority of participants were able to earn at least one badge, with many earning multiple badges.

Teachers in the program commented on the usefulness of the books, and also noticed that the quizzes that end each of the topics are not only well-written, but also offer ideas for using apps in class activities.

Perhaps best of all, Barrington 220 offers PDH (formerly known as CPDU) credit for completing the Apple Teacher program.

Learn more at

Listed: Barrington 220 Teachers on Twitter

The 2016-17 school year has marked a dramatic increase in teachers in Barrington 220 using Twitter to connect with high-impact resources and inspirational colleagues across the world. Barrington High School teachers continue to share timely photos, videos, and tweets with their students through Twitter. Teachers from Station and Prairie use Twitter to highlight activities in their lessons for their parent community to see. Students in some of our elementary schools even handle sharing the work of the day and their personal goals through their teacher's Twitter account.

Over the past few years, teachers have shared their desire to know about the exciting lessons and ideas teachers across our district practice each day. Twitter has provided a perfect solution for Barrington 220 teachers to connect across our district.

Over the past couple of months, we have worked together to gather a comprehensive list of the teachers across Barrington 220 using Twitter so we can all connect.

Here is the link to the list on my Twitter account:

Using the video clip below, you can access the list and choose whom to add to your account.

If there are any Barrington 220 Twitter accounts missing from this list, please let me know: or @iJoeRobinson.

Tips from Our Techs

Our Barrington 220 Techs provide support for everyone in the district...from the most advanced pro user to those just getting comfortable with technology. We asked our Techs to contribute one tip each, based upon their vast support experiences. The results below are a practical and immediately useful collection of ideas that you can begin using right now.


If an app on your Mac stops responding and you can't quit the app, you can "Force Quit" the app. On the keyboard press Command + Option + esc at the same time to bring up a menu. Or you can pull down the Apple Menu and select Force Quit. Select the app that is misbehaving and click Force Quit.


Please remember to back up all your files! There are many options to do this: Google Drive, P Drive, Hard Drive, Flash Drive, etc. If you need assistance do not hesitate to call x. 1500 and ask for help.  This can save a lot of frustration!


For a quick and easy way to find what you are looking for on your Mac, press Command + Space to open Spotlight search. From here, you can type the name of any application or file you are looking for and open it by pressing Return.


Delete unwanted mobile device backups from your Mac to free up hard drive space.

  1. Open iTunes.
  2. Click on the iTunes menu and select Preferences...
  3. From the Preferences... menu click on the Devices tab.
  4. Highlight the device backup you would like to delete, click Delete Backup, and then OK.


If an app on your iPad is misbehaving or your iPad doesn’t seem to be working as it should, hold down the sleep/wake button and home button at the same time for at least 5 seconds to perform a hard restart. This a good first step when trying to resolve most iPad issues.


To take a screenshot on a Mac press Command + Shift + 3 at the same time to capture the whole screen, or Command + Shift + 4 to capture a custom portion of the display. If you want to take a screenshot of a Finder Window, press Command + Shift + 4 at the same time, then hit the spacebar.  A camera icon will appear. Then click on the window you want a screenshot of.


All Devices
If your computer and/or monitor will not turn on make sure to check that the power cords are plugged snugly into the back of the device as well as the wall.


Use the Task Manager in Windows.

There are 3 ways to open Task Manager:
  1. Press CTRL+ALT+DELETE, and then click on Task Manager
  2. Press CTRL+SHIFT+ESC.
  3. Right-click on an open spot on the taskbar, and then click on Task Manager
The first tab on the Task Manager is the Applications tab. This is where you can see all the applications you have open. You can end task, switch to, and create a new task from this tab.

End Task:
Click on the application you will like to close, and then click on end task. There will be a pop-up asking if you are sure you want to end this task. When you end a program this way, any unsaved data in the application will be lost.

Switch To:
When switching to another application, click on the application that you want to switch. Then click switch to and select the application that you want to switch to.

New Task:
To start an application, click on start new task. In the dialog box, click on Browse to find the application you will like to start and click open.


Many thanks to our Techs, and Mark Polzin (Technology Support Supervisor) for compiling this list.

ICE 2017: Barrington Breaks Through!

In the past four years, Barrington 220 has been well represented at the Illinois Computing Educators (ICE) conference.

Keynote Presentation by Eric Sheninger on 03.02.17 at ICE
This year marked a spike in the number of staff members who were chosen to present at this prestigious conference that draws participants from all over the Midwest. The conference offers opportunities for educators to network, learn about new software and hardware directly from vendors, and validate the tremendous impact that educational technology has on learners.

Barrington 220 staff members dotted the ICE registration booklet with at least eight different presentations this year, a record number in the four years I've been in the district. Please feel free to contact these teachers to learn more about their presentations, described below.

Robotics Playtime
Becky McDowell and Beth Nelson, our STEM coaches for Grades 4 and 5, led a three-hour workshop designed to provide teachers the opportunity to learn about the many different robotics that can be used to help students learn to code.

Amplify Literacy Workshop
Katie Muhtaris, an Instructional Digital Age Learning coach at Hough and Lines Schools, drew upon the tenets of the book she co-authored, Amplify, to lead teachers to ideas on how to use technology to improve instructional practices, motivation, and student performance.

Swift Playground Kids & Clubs
Ted deBruin (with Diane Powell from Marie Murphy School in the Avoca School District in Wilmette) shared a passion to learn the Swift coding language used to program iOS apps. Ted and Diane talked about the after school clubs they created to help students with an interest in coding work through the Swift Playgrounds app on iPad devices.

iPads Going Home with Primary Students?!?!
Grove Grade 2 teachers who participated in the 2015–16 LaunchPad program Jenny Siegel, Melissa deBruin, and Becky Johnson shared their experience developing skills and responsibility in students with iPad devices in order to reach a point where seven- and eight year-old students can demonstrate learning through creative projects using apps independently and appropriately, both in school and at home.

Inquiry-starters and PBL: Constructing Digital Narratives
Four librarians, Becky Banach, Stacey Lang, Mary Marks, and Amy Rolain, shared their vision and practices for students in the library space and in the classroom to explore the literacy skill of writing a narrative, while using the practices of inquiry and preparing authentic activities.

Technology and the Impact of Classroom Design
Heather Crandall, a Grade 2 teacher at Rose, shared the philosophy behind creating flexible learning spaces for students—thanks to the mobility of the iPad device. In her presentation, Heather showed pictures of her classroom and recommended different types of furniture and how to acquire it at a reasonable cost.

Targeting TPACK to Redefine Learning
Eliza Aliotta (Instructional Digital Age Learning Coach), Derek Straight (Principal), Pam Meiser (Librarian), Eden Mosoff (Library/Technology Assistant), Heather Crandall (Grade 3), Kim Gillengerten (Grade 3), Neva Hillard (Grade 2), Kim Ryder (Grade 2), Christa Makrounis (Grade 5), and Ilona Solymossy (Cross-Categorical)—all LaunchPad program alumni and Barbara Rose staff—shared their journey to supporting teachers through the lens of TPACK to seamlessly embed technology into lessons and amplify their instructional practices.

Build What Matters Ignite Talk
In a presentation centered on the One to World program and our district-wide theme of Build What Matters, Becky Wiegel (Director of Elementary Teaching and Learning), Matt Fuller (Assistant Superintendent of Technology & Innovation), Becky Gill (Assistant Superintendent of Elementary & Operations), and Instructional Digital Age Learning Coaches Katie Muhtaris, Joslyn Katz, Eliza Aliotta, Lisa Riley, Kelly Pinta, Jen Burton, Becky McDowell, Beth Nelson, Laura Meehan, Amy Pellettieri, Sharon Kranz,  and Loretta Johnson, spoke individually and in groups to highlight aspects of how technology impacts instruction to help Build What Matters for our students. Each segmented focused on a word associated with the Build What Matters theme, such as "Blueprint," "Foundation," and "Assemble."

Barrington 220 Welcomes 2 New Techs

Please join the Barrington 220 Department of Technology & Innovation in welcoming two new Technology Support Associates to the team, Adam Fajnor and Kaitlyn Pankiewicz. When you call x. 1500 for technology support, you are likely to speak to either Adam or Kaitlyn. You can learn a bit more about our new Techs below.

Adam Fajnor
Technology Support Associate

The Steve Jobs keynote speech announcing the iPhone 4 was when I became really interested in tech. When I was in high school, I would jailbreak* devices and try to understand the ins and outs of the devices. I graduated from Western Illinois University in 2016 where I majored in Network Technologies and minored in Information Systems. I worked 2 summers at Barrington 220 and thought it was a great atmosphere in which to work. When I graduated from college, I saw there was an opportunity to work in the district as a tech and I couldn’t pass it up.

I love watching/playing basketball (go Bulls and Bucks) and football. I also love to travel and go hiking.

Kaitlyn Pankiewicz
Technology Support Associate

I love to learn new things, and technology has been an interest where I want to excel. While getting my Associates degree at College of Lake County, I was working at Allendale Association as a User Support Specialist. I learned a lot about customer service and troubleshooting there. I heard about an opening at Barrington 220 and feel that it would a great fit to learn and grow in the technology field.

When I am not at work, I spend time with my family, friends, and training Freya (my year-old Akita). To relax I love to play video games and draw.

*Editor's note: "Jailbreaking" is the process of removing limitations built into an operating system for the purpose of modifying a device’s features at the system level. Please do not attempt to jailbreak your district-owned devices.

Easy Access to Student Plans

A recent enhancement to Infinite Campus makes it easier for teachers to stay informed regarding an individual student's Health Plan, 504 Plan, or Individualized Education Plan. The following steps allow a classroom teacher to view plans for students rostered to one or more of their classes.

Step 1: Navigate to Campus Instruction

Step 2: Scroll to the bottom of the left index column and select Custom Links and Reports

Step 3: Select Student Plans

A listing of all classes will display in period order.  From this listing a teacher can access 504 Plans, Health Plans, and IEPs—all from one roster! Before a teacher views a plan for the first time, there will be a NEW PLAN designation in the appropriate column for students with a plan.

Step 4: Click on the most recent file associated with the desired plan to create a PDF of the 504 Plan, Health Plan, or IEP.

The date the plan is read will now appear on the teacher roster and in the Infinite Campus database. When a new plan is created by the appropriate team, the indicator will change from a date back to NEW PLAN, alerting the teacher to new content to be reviewed.

Teachers are encouraged to print copies of the student plans for substitutes.

Summer Tech Support In...and Out...of Barrington 220

Although our current weather may not belie this, summer is, indeed, coming! I just wanted to take a moment to remind you that our tech sup...