Deena Kimmel, Marketing Specialist

Texthelp’s List of Recommended #FETC 2018 Sessions

The Future of Education Technology Conference (FETC) is taking place in Orlando, Florida from January 23 - 26. In its 38th year, FETC brings together thousands of educators from around the world for an “intensive, highly collaborative exploration of new technologies, best practices and pressing issues. Its impact has been felt by thousands of districts, schools, educators — and ultimately students.” If you are interested in transforming learning through education technology, this is the conference for you.

To help you navigate the incredible list of sessions, we’ve highlighted a handful that we’re most excited about. Below please find the list of Texthelp-recommended sessions.

Texthelp's Session:

Thursday, January 25

1:00 - 1:40 pm: UDL Math and Science to Empower and Engage Your Students
John McGowan, Texthelp (@jmacattak)

Universal Design for Learning is a framework that provides choices for students to respond in the method they prefer. In this Learning Lab, Texthelp's STEM Product Manager will detail how you can engage and empower students in math and science through digital notation and leveraging technology in the classroom. You'll also learn the best methods to increase student communication and decrease the feedback time for teachers -- all while increasing the quality of the feedback by using EquatIO and other digital tools. Your students will give better responses and you will be giving better feedback to your students faster!

Friends of Texthelp's Sessions:

Tuesday, January 23

10:30 - 12:30 pm: Using Google Tools to Promote Universal Design for Learning
Mike Marotta, Inclusive Technology Solutions, LLC (@mmatp)

The use of Google tools and Chromebooks continues to explode in education. But how can you use this array of tools to promote a culture of Universal Design for Learning (UDL)? This BYOD workshop will focus on the three principles of UDL — multiple means of engagement, representation, and action and expression — to examine ways of incorporating Google tools into your UDL learning environments. From Chrome apps and extensions to Google tools such as Cardboard, Mike Marotta will highlight ways to support ALL learners in the classroom. You will explore tools to assist students in the areas of reading, writing and math, as well as with executive functioning skills that include time management, organization, task completion and focus. You'll also receive resources to continue your learning beyond this workshop.

4:00 - 6:00 pm: The Google-Infused Classroom: Demonstrations of Learning
Tanya Avrith, Grandview Preparatory School (@TanyaAvrith)

Reflection is what we do during and at the end of a unit to think critically about the learning process. It is a time set aside to contemplate what we learned, how we learned and where we might connect it to the real world. In this session, we will examine how to implement process- oriented digital portfolios that promote self-assessment for students as they learn. Explore the best Google infused tools available and how to easily setup your classroom digital workflow when using digital portfolios.

Wednesday, January 24

8:00 - 10:00 am: G Suite Creation Station: Creating (Not Consuming) With Google Tools
Matt Miller, Ditch that Textbook (@jmattmiller)

Whether students realize it or not, Google is more than a search engine and YouTube. Google Suite helps them make powerful, shareable creations that can inform and empower others -- letting them effect change and help others! In this workshop, you will learn about very cool, very engaging things students can make with Google Apps -- including some surprising ones you would not expect from standard productivity tools. This is a hands-on session, so come prepared with a charged laptop or Chromebook! (iPads will have limited interactivity with some activities.)

Note: This session is also taking place Tuesday, January 23 from 4:00 - 6:00 pm

4:00 - 5:00 pm: Google Sheets Activities for all Subjects
Eric Curts, Stark Portage Area Computer Consortium (@ericcurts)

Google Sheets is not just a tool for crunching numbers. It is a powerful tool for learning, inquiry, exploration, and inspiration in any subject area. In this session we will take a look at several practical activities for a wide range of content areas including random writing prompts, flash cards, educational games, student-created learning databases, art and creativity, and of course analyzing data to draw conclusions and make predictions. For more details see:

4:00 - 5:00 pm: Create with Google: Free Lesson Plans for G Suite Apps
Nancy Biddinger, Orange County Public Schools (@BiddingerFL)

Let's Create Training with Google* is a free program for 7th-12th grade that uses instructional videos and real life projects to teach students how to use G Suite applications like Docs, Sheets, and Slides. The lessons can be applied to any content that requires students to produce, collaborate and/or present. This is not a coding class! Students develop digital literacy through projects relevant to their own interests. If your school is using G Suite, Let's Create with Google should be in your instructional planning toolbox.

*This is a new program - the title of the program has not be finalized at this time - but we will want to share it!

Thursday, January 25

10:30 - 12:30 pm: Chromebooks: The Essential Toolkit for Supporting Students With Learning Challenges
Brian Friedlander, AssistiveTek, LLC (@assistivetek)

In today's schools, special and general educators must stay up to speed on how to use the latest tools in Chromebooks to successfully support students with learning disabilities in inclusive settings. In this fast-paced BYOD workshop, you will learn how to use essential Chromebook features when serving students with most common learning challenges. Specifically, you'll learn about the leading apps and extensions to support students with reading and writing disabilities, as well as how to successfully make use of word prediction, graphic organizers, text-to-speech and audio books. You'll also find out about the latest Chromebook tools to intervene for students with dysgraphia in the area of math, and gain updates about the best features to improve students' notetaking and organization. Importantly, you will walk away with practical know-how to immediately use in the classroom.

2:00 - 2:40 pm: Understanding When and Why to Address Special Needs Through Technology
Luis Perez, Eye on Access (@eyeonaxs)
Kevin Custer, Arc Capital Development
Kindy Segovia, Kent Intermediate School District (@kindysegovia)
Rod Berger, MindRocket Media Group (@drrodberger)

Sometimes technology is used for budgetary reasons, to meet an accountability requirement, or for equity considerations. Sometimes it’s chosen because it is “nice to have,” but may not necessarily fit a unique need. However, especially within special education, there are specific student needs that can be best met through the expert implementation of technology. When this is the case, tech truly becomes a “must have.” In this session, hear which special needs are best addressed by technology, where to find the right tech, and how to effectively address these student needs.

Friday, January 26

1:00 - 1:20 pm: How to Revamp Special Education with Technology
Pam Hubler, BCSD Special Services (@specialtechie)

A fast-paced session full of strategies and free tools that can be used in special education classes based on UDL theories and practices with the focus on technology integration and classroom setup to use service time effectively. The strategies, tools, and ideas to be presented have been tested with many different PK-12 populations. Google tools and Chromebook ideas will be a major focus of this session, and you'll learn about pictures, videos, and links to explore after the session.

1:00 - 1:40 pm: Moving From Dependent to Independent Learners: Our 1:1 Journey
Jennifer Lotze, Hudson School District (@jpeterson7384)
Diane Schofield, Hudson School District (@schofide)

Hudson Middle School is the largest middle school in the state of Wisconsin. As a new technology coordinator and new associate principal leading the charge on the implementation of a school-wide 1:1 Chromebook initiative there were many great ideas, thoughts about purposeful technology integration, and a dream of building a connection with students to promote using technology to support their growth as they move from being dependent to independent. As we rolled out the 1:1 Chromebook initiative, it was a priority to base all tenants on the middle school mission: Hudson Middle School learners understand, support, and challenge each other to be caring, capable, and creative contributors. As the district enters its second year of full implementation we have a renewed vision and strategies for those dreaming of what a technology rich environment could mean for deep student connections and learning.

1:00 - 1:40 pm: Creating Schools That Work for Kids
Eric Sheninger, International Center for Leadership in Education (@E_Sheninger)

Schools have traditionally been designed to work well for adults, but the conventional school design hasn't always served our learners. Students today need to be empowered to take ownership of their learning in relevant and meaningful ways to prepare them for a constantly evolving world. This session will explore how to cultivate shared ownership, respect, and trust, creating a school learning culture that students value and to which they want to belong in the digital age. Attendees will be exposed to a variety of successful strategies and initiatives implemented at schools with a focus on the purposeful integration of technology, a redefinition of learning spaces, personalized learning, and the whole child.

So as you can see, there are lots of great sessions for you to attend with lots of great learnings for you to takeaway. If you are at the conference, don’t forget to pop by our booth (#1044) and say hi to our Texthelpers. We look forward to seeing you there!


Nancy Biddinger 1/15/2018 11:21:41 PM
Thanks for the recommendations! (And especially thank you for the recommendation of my poster session!)

See you at FETC 18 in Orlando and then at TCEA 18 in Austin, TX.




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