Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Technology Tips: Shut down your computer!

Today's Technology Tips comes to you for all users...not just Teachers...but students Too!

One of the common questions people ask with their computers...do I need to shut down?

-Because of hibernate commands and stand by modes... people think they don't need to turn their computer off.

However, please read this:

From a software perspective, an operating system and the programs you run on it tend to accumulate all sorts of cruft over extended periods of use – temporary files, disk caches, page files, open file descriptors, pipes, sockets, zombie processes, memory leaks, etc. etc. etc. All that stuff can slow down the computer, but it all goes away when you shut down or restart the system. So shutting down your computer every once in a while – and I do mean actually shutting down, not just hibernating or putting it to sleep – can give it a “fresh start” of sorts and make it seem nice and zippy again.
However, different computers and OS’s are not all equally affected by this phenomenon. Generally, a computer with a lot of RAM can go for much longer than a computer with only a little RAM. A server, on which you just start up a few programs and then let them work, will be fine for much longer than a desktop computer, where you’re constantly opening and closing different programs and doing different things with them. Plus, server operating systems are optimized for long-term use. It’s also been said that Linux and Mac OS tend to run for longer than Windows systems, although in my experience that mostly depends on what programs you use on them, and not so much on any differences between the kernels of the operating systems themselves.
That came from an article LINKED HERE.
Think of it this way...computers are nothing but machinery.  All machinery breaks down eventually.  If you run something continually, all the time, never shutting it off, you are shortening it's useful lifespan.
In addition, with Windows computers (like our school machines)...Microsoft often releases updates that are installed when the computer shuts down.
Also, for student machines...the large majority of students take their netbooks home every day.  The computer should be shut off during this travel time.  If it is on, the hard drive...which is a physical piece of machinery, is still running.  
This is what a Hard Drive looks like.
I can't tell you how many student machines are brought to me to work on that are not powered off.  Even last summer, when I went to install new programs on all the existing machines... over half of the students machines were not shut off.
So, do yourself a favor, and give your computer a break...it'll appreciate it.  At the end of the day...Shut Down!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Awesome Picture!

Awesome Picture from Google Plus today!

This was originally posted by

Harold little

Whenever I make a blog post, it goes onto Google Plus, so I usually look on there, when I that happens.

This picture is amazing!
Have a great day!

Tuesday Teacher Tips: Thinglink

First of all congratulations to both the Elkton-LB Football and Volleyball teams.

Both had great regular seasons, and enjoyed a post season victory before their seasons ended.  Each team should be proud of the way they played, and the way that they represented our community.

With the end of the fall season sports:  CC, VB, FB...that means we will begin the winter sports season...which means BB.

I have been working with the 5th graders for a few weeks now.  Coach Erickson started some of his open gyms yesterday, and the Girls BB team will have their first open gyms of the year tonight.  Let's hope the determination and success of the fall sports rub off on our basketball teams!

On to today's subject:  Thinglink

What is Thinglink.com?  Well, for the answer to that...let's see what the actual website says about that.

"ThingLink helps you create and discover rich images.
Be creative! Make your images come alive with music, video, text, images, shops and more!
Every image contains a story and ThingLink helps you tell your stories. Follow image channels from your favorite bands, bloggers and friends. Your ThingLink interactive images form a channel that other users can follow.
Share your channel with friends on Facebook and Twitter, and follow your friends. Touch and discover."
So basically, it is a way to make pictures and graphics interactive!
Could be a very interesting way to make assignments/projects "come to life".
For example...here is a photo of the Wright Brothers that was posted on the Thinglink website.

As you can see (if the embed code worked in the blog), this picture has an audio clip attached to it, a video clip, and 3 text information boxes as well.
Much like previous subjects we covered like:  Instagrok, Simple Booklet, and Screenr... Thinglink is a web based application that you can use to "spice up" your assignments/projects and get your students creativity flowing!
As always... Thinglink, as well as the other sites mentioned here, are saved on my "Delicious" Social Bookmark.  You don't need to bookmark all of them (unless you really want to)...just bookmark my Delicious page.  
(An aside...a great way for you to keep all the links handy for all your classes in to create your own "Delicious" page...and then make your students save the link to your page in their favorites...that way they can always find the site you are pointing them to)
I will be out of the office Thursday and Friday this week.  My wife is attending a training in Rapid City and I will be taking some vacation time (before basketball starts).  So, for Elkton Staff, I will be gone Wednesday to Lake Benton like usual, but will be out of the office for the rest of the week.
Thanks for your attention, and I hope some of you decide to give "Thinglink" a shot!

Monday, November 11, 2013

Happy Veterans Day

To all who served, or are still serving...

Thank you for all your effort and sacrifice.

Have a safe and happy Veterans Day!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Lake Benton School - Scan to Inbox

Lake Benton Staff, 

Evidently the scanner has been sending things to your Junk E-mail Folder.

We can change this so it goes to your inbox.

1.        Open your e-mail

    2.       Click on the “gear” symbol at the top right of your window:  

Select "Options" NOT "Office 365 settings
   3.  From the drop down list Select “options”

   4.       On the left side under the “options menu” select the link entitled “block or allow”  


   5.       In the text box located under “safe senders and recipients” write in this address:  Scanner@LakeBentonSchool.com

6.       Then, click the + button next to the box to add it to your “safe senders” list.

7.       Finally, click the blue “save” button on the bottom left of the screen.

Click the Blue "Back Arrow" to return to inbox

8.       To return to your inbox, click the little blue “back” arrow, at the top left side of the Options menu.

This should hopefully stop this from occurring.

First Snow!

Our first real Snow of the school year.

I know most people hate snow, and all that comes with it.

I actually don't mind snow, as long as the roads are driveable, and it isn't below 0 temperature-wise.

Love this picture of a "first snow".

It may be cold, and sloppy, and make the roads slippery, but it sure is pretty.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Tuesday Teacher Tips: Simple Booklet

Teachers and Educators,

Time for another Tuesday Teacher Tip!  (formerly Tuesday Teacher Technology Tidbits)

Looking for a simple and effective way for students to display their knowledge?

Tired of Powerpoints,  Bubble Charts, and Papers?

How about having your students make their own "online booklets"?


Pretty neat little website that allows to create online booklets, from scratch.  Insert videos, pictures, documents, whatever you want.

And you can publish the booklets, and embed them into a website or blog.

Pretty neat little idea.

You do have to register to use the site, and I believe you are limited to 3 sample booklets, but another new and neat tool that you can use to produce quality learning projects!

Like all my suggested sites, this is listed on my delicious bookmark page.

Have a good rest of the week Everyone!

Monday, November 4, 2013

State CC Video

I uploaded the state CC Meet video that I made to celebrate the boys Class B Championship!

Congratulations to the Elks!