Digital Learning Day 2015

Reposted from Round Rock ISD Press Release 3/13/15

Spicewood students explored Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math experiences during the school’s Digital Learning Day. Held the Friday prior to Spring Break, Digital Learning Day provided opportunities for students to explore STEM experiences throughout the school day. Students took part in a variety of STEM courses, including: coding, architecture, engineering, and geology instruction. The day provided access to…. (Read More)


Concept-Mapping Techniques and Software

Concept-mapping, described in its most simplistic form, is a visual form of outlining. As with outlining, it captures thoughts and ideas, organizes those thoughts and ideas, and shows dependencies/connections between those thoughts and ideas. However, this technique, also called idea-mapping and mind-mapping, goes beyond the limitations that are inherent in such a linear tool as outlining. Concept-mapping provides a visual representation or diagram for individuals and groups to easily see how ideas connect to each other and relate to a main topic.

Because it is visual,
– ideas can be more easily explained and conveyed
– deeper thinking and understanding is promoted
– problems, possibilities, and scenarios can be more easily analyzed and explored
– engagement in the brainstorming process is encouraged and facilitated
– collaboration is increased

Although this technique can be done with a pencil and paper, chalkboard, marker board, or an easel pad, using digital tools such as concept-mapping software, document cameras, and interactive devices increase flexibility, documentation, and sharing to a much higher and more engaged level.

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Be sure to click on your school in the side bar to see examples of how this,
as well as other, technology is being integrated into the curriculum.
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Document Cameras in the Classroom

PreK through 12th grade teachers are discovering not only the instructional power, but the ease and flexibility of the document camera. It is capable of projecting, magnifying, and recording easily seen images and video of books, objects, documents, maps, drawings, activities, experiments, people, animals, etc. This tool is quickly becoming a favorite of teachers, individual students, and groups of students during lessons, demonstrations, and presentations:
– monitoring eggs hatching, butterflies emerging, plants growing, etc.
– graphic organizers
– modeling math and writing/editing
– math manipulatives
– art work
– science experiments and dissections
– student work
– show and tell
– “Big Book” reading and activities
– calculators
– timers
– note taking
– (the list can be endless)

All of this can be captured through video so that it can be reviewed later, for providing it to absent students, or providing a tool to help parents to support their children at home.

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Be sure to click on your school in the side bar to see examples of how this,
as well as other, technology is being integrated into the curriculum.
– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

In the Spotlight (Elementary – 5/24/2012)

Voigt: Graphing Energy
Fifth grade students in Mr. Halsell’s science class created comparative bar graphs from data gathered in a potential/kinetic energy investigation using online graphing tools. Once complete, the students added their graphs to a Powerpoint presentation on potential and kinetic energy.

Berkman: Fifth Grade Video & Music Producers
In their final session of Aspire, fifth grade students explored the world of video and music production. Students worked in small groups to retell or transform scenes from a short story they had read. Their project plan included storyboarding, script writing, role assignment and lastly shooting the video. Students also explored an online music creation program called Soundation Studio which was very easy to use yet complex enough that they felt like they were actually in a real recording studio! This was a great introduction into the world of multimedia!

Old Town: Providing Goods and Services
2nd graders finished up their goods and services unit by interviewing someone and choosing a final project to present their information. This student chose an interview using the broadcast greenscreen and software.


In the Spotlight (Elementary – 5/22/2012)

Berkman: Year End Photostories
First grade students in Mrs. Duffy’s class enjoyed learing about Photostory as they incorporated photos from their classroom into a year end movie. Students learned how to import images, add text to each photo, and create music. They each enjoyed viewing their own finished product as well as their classmates’ movies.

Double File: Wellness, Cooking & Technology
As part of the Fuel Up to Play 60 program happening at Double File Trail, students were challenges to track their movement, eat healthy and much more! Here First Grader Gavin and his cousins Alyssa and Gabriel teach you how to make a healthy smoothie! The family created the video at home and uploaded to our DFT School Tube account. See if you can learn from their home cooking show! Vote for Gavin on his School Tube Video at

More Great Technology Happenings on Elementary Campuses Around the District:
Blackland Prairie PPCD students: “Touch” Me a Story!
Caraway: Book Trailers from TAG
Gattis 2nd grade students: Food Chain in Kidspiration
Old Town 5th grade students: Animal Adaptations and Ecosystems
Sommer: Second Grade Poetry
Caraway 1st grade students: Happy Mother’s Day
Forest Creek: Fourth Grade Practices Surgery—in the lab!
Forest Creek: Fifth Grade creates Brain Pop Videos
Forest Creek: Fifth Grade Creates IO Machines
Old Town: Kinder Reading
Purple Sage 5th grade students: Photo Story3 Used as Background for Live Performance

Canyon Creek: Stop Motion Geometry
Mrs. Mitchell’s class used stop-motion animation to to demonstrate their understanding of translation, rotation and slide. The students collaborated with partners to create their videos. One student held the camera and the other moved the object in small increments to create movement when turned into a video. The photographs were moving!

In the Spotlight (Elementary – 5/18/2012)

Jollyville Robotics Students give Demonstration at Barnes and Noble
Jollyville Elementary school held a book fair at Barnes and Noble near Lakeline Mall. A percentage of the day’s purchases went to Jollyville’s library. Librarian, Mrs. Carter, organized lots of events for the day, like a pet parade, flip flop fashion show and a robotics demonstration. At 10:30 on Saturday morning, the robotics club met in the store’s story area to show off some things that they have been working on this year. Children gathered around to watch and the to use the robots, created with Lego NXT kits, themselves.

Wells Branch: 5th Graders Keeping Current!
Students in Mrs. Wilson’s 5th grade class have been keeping up with current events within our community and around the world. The students presented a news worthy event that occurred within the past week. The students can present their articles in a variety of ways. Some students use technology such at Prezi, Windows Live Movie Maker, Office Powerpoint, and Office Publisher, while other students use their creative side with the arts. Creativity and learning comes alive with re-enactments of the article through a skit, anchoring a newscast , while other still create sculptures and book covers for the article. This allows the students to keep current with news worthy events through all different learning styles and media.

Graphic Organizers
Caraway 4th grade students: Brainstorning Web of Prior Knowledge
Pond Springs students: Classifying Animals with Kidspiration

Living History Museum
Live Oak 3rd grade students
Old Town 3rd grade students

Interactive Boards
Callison: Advanced Promethean Training!
Pond Springs: Are You Smarter Than a Third Grader?

Response Devices
Berkman: Let’s Vote
Deepwood: TurningPoint Response System.

Video Productions/Presentations
Spicewood: 1st Grade Expressions
Canyon Creek: Hatchet Retold Using Paper Slides
Fern Bluff: Stop Motion Movies on Energy Sources

More Great Technology Happenings on Elementary Campuses Around the District:
Deepwood: Favorite Things Tagxedo
Bluebonnet: Second Grade Creates Powerpoint Presentations to Display Research
Cactus Ranch: Animal Skull Examination
Callison: Online Resource Training!
Live Oak: Fifth Grade is Going Places with Moodle
Live Oak: Fourth and Fifth Graders Learn Science with STEMscopes
Pond Springs: Fourth Grader Make Cartoons with ToonDoo
Pond Springs: First Grade Creates Animal Photo Stories
Purple Sage: New Technology at Purple Sage
Purple Sage: Student Created Newsletter
Purple Sage: Intervention Software
Purple Sage: QR Codes used at our Book Fair
Spicewood: Public Service Announcements

In the Spotlight (Elementary – 5/4/2012)

Sommer Elementary: First Grade Commercials
First Grade students participated in a media literacy unit. As a part of this unit of study, students created a product as if it would be sold in the marketplace. To complete this project students wrote and produced commercials for the products that they invented. These commercials were filmed using the green screen technology and equipment that we have in our broadcast room. They had a blast staging their commercials and choosing the pictures that would be their background.

Callison Elementary: Congratulations, Ms. Schlung!
On Saturday, April 28th, fourth grade teacher Ms. Brianna Schlung had an opportunity to showcase her Promethean skills as eager Texas State students watched. Ms. Schlung was asked to visit with the Texas State students after she was observed by Texas State interns on Callison’s campus.

More Great Technology Happenings on Elementary Campuses Around the District:
Deepwood 5th grade students create math reviews. Visit “Geometry Review Apps” at
Fern Bluff 2nd grade students take virtual field trip of the Indianapolis Zoo. Visit “Amazing Amazon Virtual Fieldtrip” at
Deepwood 2nd grade students create presentations on animals. Visit “Voice Thread Presentations in Second Grade” at
Caldwell Heights 4th grade students study science with the help of Jeff Ferris from The Natural Gardener of Austin. Visit the May 1st posting at
Herrington 3rd grade students create Texas Bluebonnet Award book reviews for campus library. Visit “Students Review Books for Library Display” at
Jollyville students conduct electronic surveys. Visit “TAG Students Use Survey Tool to Gather Data about their Classmates” at
Anderson Mill 1st grade students use technology to learn math concepts. Visit “Math Stations” at
Old Town students use Today’s Meet to collaborate and brainstorm. Visit “Today’s Meet” at
Old Town 5th grade students create brochures of Texas facts. Visit “Stating the Facts” at
Sommer 2nd grade students produce videos of Rossini. Visit “Animoto Research Projects” at

In the Spotlight (Elementary – 4/25/2012)

Wells Branch: 5th Grade Science- It’s a breath of fresh Oxygen!
In investigating the carbon dioxide-oxygen cycle to understand its significance to our survival, 5th grade students conducted a lab to look for evidence of photosynthesis. Students had to put on serious scientist thinking, as they looked for oxygen bubbles in test tubes with water plants, and then used an acid indicator that changes color to prove that photosynthesis had occurred. Students video recorded all their work and thinking. They will be spending the next few weeks editing and creating a final product that will explain what they learned.

More Great Technology Happenings on Elementary Campuses Around the District:
Robertson 2nd grade students research and create reports on animals. Visit the April 19, 2012 posting of “PebbleGo–A Rich Research Resource for Young Readers” at
Callison 2nd grade students take a virtual field trip. Visit “Virtual Field Trip!” at
Old Town 2nd grade students research and create timelines of life events of historical characters. Visit “Second Grade Time Lines are in Order” at
Cactus Ranch 3rd grade students use SMART Interactive tools in Music class. Visit “SMART Music” at
Wells Branch 3rd grade students blend webquests, real-life, math, and science. Visit “3rd Grade Webquesting!” at
Wells Branch 4th grade students use a webcam to stream and record live video of a caterpillar’s lifecycle. Visit
Wells Branch 5th grade students use webcam and video conferencing tool to have fun learning science. Visit “5th Graders Hanging Out…Google Style!” at

In the Spotlight (Elementary – 4/23/2012)

Caraway: Gaming at Caraway
Calling all gamers! After having the opportunity of going to the Conference, Mr. Sosa’s 3rd grade class is creating their own games on-line using Gamestar Mechanic. Gamestar Mechanic is a game and on-line community that teaches kids how to design their own games! Through Gamestar Mechanic, the students are learning about the elements of game design which include: space, components, mechanics, goals, and rules.
Designing games also builds:
•Systems Thinking,
•21st Century Skills,
•Creative Problem Solving,
•Art and Aesthetics,
•Writing and Storytelling,
•and creates a motivation for STEM learning.
Visit Mr. Sosa’s website and click on “Class Made Games” to start playing some of these games. Remember to leave a comment with your suggestions on how the students can improve their games.
Happy Gaming!

More Great Technology Happenings on Elementary Campuses Around the District:
– Blackland 1st grade students research and create presentation on famous inventors and animals. Visit “First Grade has been hard at Work” at
– Old Town 1st grade students research animals and create projects. Visit “Animal Research for First Grade” at
– Chandler Oaks 5th grade students create pie graphs and convert fractions. Visit “5th Grade TAG Students Tackle Graphing – with Technology!” at
– Spicewood 5th grade students broaden their historical perspectives. Visit “5th Grade Teachers Create a Website to Support Student Research” at
– Sommer 5th grade students create claymation videos. Visit “Getting Animated!” at
– Cactus Ranch students acquire weather station. Visit “Cactus Ranch Weather Station” at
– Anderson Mill students use technology of expand their physical classroom. Visit “Netbooks Anywhere” at
– Herington students create public service video. Visit “Students Create Video to Honor Auxiliary Employees” at
– Blackland TAG students raise the level of collaboration during poetry lesson. Visit “Let’s Meet on Today’s Meet!” at
– Berkman students use mix fun with learning as they practice their skills of using a coordinate grid. Visit “Coordinate Grid Online” at

Great Oaks: Take a Look at Kidcaster Lauren!!!
Take look at Lauren Bradley. She got a rare opportunity thanks to Zack Shields of Fox 7 News. Lauren was able to appear on live television and give the morning forecast. What a wonderful opportunity! If you want your child to appear with Zack, just apply through his Kidcaster website:

In the Spotlight (Elementary – 4/20/2012)

Wells Branch 5th grade students create movies to explain addition and subtraction of fractions. Visit “Fraction of a Fifth Grader” at
Students were able to choose one of the following as the video they wanted to create:
1. Make a how-to video that would teach other students your age how to put fractions in order from least to greatest.
2. Create a commercial that advertises a special item for sale. It should use equivalent fractions to try and trick the buyer into paying more for the same amount of product.

Forest Creek Coyotes Service Learning Club Learns about Commercials and Promotes Empty Bowl Project Event: (
The Service Learning Club is a group of fourth and fifth grade students who do community-focused activities throughout the year at Forest Creek Elementary. One of the many activities they are involved with is the Empty Bowl Project, a fund raiser for the Round Rock food pantry. People create empty bowls which are sold at a fund raiser; all proceeds benefit the Round Rock Area Serving Center. The students wanted to advertise the event to the other students at Forest Creek, so they decided to create a commercial. The students researched what they wanted the commercial to say and wrote the script. The students filmed the commercial with teacher support.
During the course of this month long project, the students learned about writing to a specific audience and creating a focused message. They also learned about public speaking and memorized their parts. They learned about technology as they filmed and helped put together the project. We are very proud of these students and their finished project. We are hoping that this not only encourages people to come to the Empty Bowl Festival on Saturday, April 14th, but also inspires them to try a project-based learning experience also! Please enjoy the commercial our students worked so hard on. Click here ( if you would like to view the commercial on YouTube.

More Great Technology Happenings on Elementary Campuses Around the District:
Voigt Kindergarten students illustrate their knowledge of organisms and their environments. Visit “What Do Plants Need?” at
Teravista Kindergarten students categorize living and non-living in science. Visit “Kindergarten” at
Pond Springs Kindergarten student use technology to vote for and graph results on their favorite Armadillo books. Visit “Kindergarten Students Create Graphs with TurningPoint!” at
Anderson Mill 1st grade students learn about animal characteristics. Visit “Animals” at
Berkman 1st grade students learn about and illustrate life cycles in science. Visit “Life Cycle Illustration” at
Great Oaks 1st grade students use video to observe and study hatching of eggs in classroom project. Visit “First Grade Chicks Hatching” at
Forest Creek 1st grade students create video of animal research. Visit “Heinzen’s Honeybees Buzz about PhotoStory” at
Berkman 2nd grade students make technology part of their daily routine. Visit “Daily Routines Not So Routine” at
Blackland 2nd grade students use TurningPoint response devices. Visit “Student Response Devices…being Paper-Lean and Green” at
Chandler Oaks 2nd grade students create public service announcement videos on making safe choices. Visit “Second Grade Responds to Problems” at
Teravista 2nd grade students combine puppets and technology to present student created stories. Visit “2nd grade in art” at
Teravista 2nd grade students create PowerPoint presentations on their animal research. Visit “Second Grade Creates Creative Presentations” at
Spicewood 2nd grade students use webcams to monitor life cycle of Monarch butterflies. Visit “Live Streaming of 2nd Grade Monarchs” at
Deepwood 2nd grade students use blogs as part of their learning process. Visit “Second Grade Blogs” at
Forest Creek 2nd grade students create PowerPoint presentations on their animal research. Visit “Fulp’s Flashy Fish and Kelso’s Critters Tackles Power Point!” at
Blackland 3rd grade students create presentations of their online research. Visit “Third Graders are working on research projects” at
Chandler Oaks 3rd grade students use technology to investigate probability in math. Visit “Third Graders Get “SMART” with Probability” at
Teravista 3rd grade students use Google Earth to gather data on natural and man-made wonders. Visit “TAG” at
Forest Creek 3rd grade students use Word Clouds to write descriptive sentences. Visit “Shogan’s Salamanders Used TAGXEDO” at
Teravista 4th grade students to write a Leadership book. Visit “4th grade uses Technology To Promote Leadership” at
Bluebonnet 5th grade students make the most of their laptop computers. Visit “5th Grade Superstars” at
Teravista 5th grade students use StemScopes and TurningPoint to review their understanding of Science concepts. Visit “STAAR Science Practice” at
Anderson Mill students take advantage of the Round Rock ISD’s eLibrary system. Visit “In the Library” at
Blackland students use digital Avatars to narrate book reports. Visit “Avatars” at
Berkman students move forward in creating their websites on Greek mythology and paper toys. Visit “Student Web Designers” at
Old Town students use Book Flix to combine art and Book Flix. Visit “Art and Technology” at
Live Oak students use Google Docs to collect data. Visit “TAG Students create surveys using Google Docs” at