Communication Options for iLearn@home

Last Updated: 4/17/2020 2:57 PM


Google Classroom - offers a platform for blended learning that allows for content delivery & communication with students in a paperless environment.  It is a part of the Google Apps for Educators suite.


Edmodo - just like Google Classroom offers a secure network where educators, students & parents can communicate, collaborate & share content online or through an app on mobile devices.

  • Method for access: Go to https://barrenschools.edmodo.com. If you have never logged into Edmodo you will need a code that specific to your school.  Please contact Melissa Moss for that code.  You can login using your school Google account also.  Once logged in you have the ability to create or join a group.  Creating a group will generate a group code that you will then share with your students to allow them to join.
  • Must knows
    • Teachers & students will have to create an account.  Teachers will need a school code to create an account (school codes should not be given to students to create accounts).  Students will need a group code provided by the teacher to create an account.
    • To use Edmodo on a mobile device you must download the app to your mobile device.  
    • DO NOT post your Edmodo codes on your websites.  Please provide those to students by a secure method.

Google Hangouts - is a unified communications service that allows members to initiate and participate in text, voice or video chats, either one-on-one or in a group.  Hangouts are built into Gmail, and mobile apps that are available for iOS and Android devices.
(http://searchmobilecomputing.techtarget.com/definition/Google-Hangouts)

  • Method for access: Go to hangouts.google.com if you aren't already signed in, click the sign in tab in the top right corner & sign in using your school Google account. (Username & password you log on to the computer with at school).  Once you have logged in you have the ability to instant message or video chat with staff and students in our district.  The easiest way to start a Hangout is to click the people tool in the top left corner & search for the person(s) you want to work with.  Click on the person's name & this will pop up a window in the right corner of your screen.  You now have the option to
    • Chat with that person by typing your message in the chat box at the bottom of the window or...
    • Video Call the person by clicking the video camera icon in the top left corner of this screen.    This will start a video call to the person you have selected.  If the person you are calling is online you just need to wait for that person to answer.  
      • You also have the option of sharing your screen within a Google video chat by clicking the three dots in the top left corner while you are in a video chat.  
      • You can chat with more than one person at a time by inviting others to the conversation using the person symbol  in the top right corner of the chat window or if you are within a video chat you will also have this icon listed in the top bar of the chat.  
  • Must knows:
    • You will need a webcam & microphone (either built into your computer or external) to video chat with a person in Google hangouts
    • Students using mobile devices (iPad, Android tablet, or phones will need to download the Google Hangout app to their devices to use those for a Hangout.
      • Notifications can be turned on for mobile devices that will let you know if some is trying to contact you through Google hangout in the settings of the app or online. 
    • All Hangout conversations are archived & can be accessed in the settings of Google Hangout.
  • Google Hangout Tutorials: (click the links below)

Google Meet - is a video conferencing software/app that is a more business based version of Google Hangouts.  It allows up to 30 users to join a pre-scheduled video call at one time via a link generated & shared by the meeting organizer through a calendar invite, via email, etc.  Users also have the capability to join the meeting via a phone call.  Mobile apps that are available for iOS and Android devices called Hangouts Meet by Google.

  • Method for access: Go to meet.google.com if you aren't already signed in, click the sign in tab in the top right corner & sign in using your school Google account. (Username & password you log on to the computer with at school).  Once you have logged in you will click "+Join or start a meeting" If you have previously scheduled an upcoming meeting you will see it listed right below.  If starting a meeting you will be asked to give it at name.  You will see a screen that says Join Now & after clicking that the option to get the link & phone information to share with people you need to invite through email, etc. or the option to add people to join instantly.  
  • Must knows:
    • You will need a webcam & microphone (either built into your computer or external) to video chat with a person in Google Meet.
    • You can join a meeting from a phone by dialing into the Meet number that is shared with the invite
    • Students using mobile devices (iPad, Android tablet, or phones will need to download the Google Hangouts Meet by Google app to their devices to use those for a Hangout Meet.
      • Notifications can be turned on for mobile devices that will let you know if some is trying to contact you through Google hangout in the settings of the app or online. 
    • Meet sessions allow the presenter &/or participants to share their screen with all viewers
    • Meet sessions can be recorded to share with others at a later date
  • Google Meet Tutorials: (click the links below)

Google Voice - is a voicemail service that enables users to send free text messages, customize their voicemail, read voicemail text transcript, etc. using a anonymous phone number.  

  • Method for access:  Log in to your PERSONAL Google account & go to voice.google.com.  This will take you to your Google Voice inbox.  Click "Get a Voice Number" on the left menu.  This will open a small window that says "Upgrade your Account".  At the bottom of that window click "I want a new number."  Next, add a forwarding number and pick the type in the drop down below it.  (This will be the number that your will want your anonymous number forwarded to when the students call.)  Click continue & it will ask you to verify the phone by allowing it to be called or texting you a verification  code.  You enter the verification code if you choose text or click call me now to allow this to happen.  Once your phone is verified, put in our area code to allow it to search for a phone number, click the number that you want to use & click continue. This will add that number to your account.  Click finish & you now have your own Google Voice phone number.  The number will show up in the right menu when you are logged into your Google Voice account.  This is the number you will want to give to students & parents to call you.  
  • Must knows:
    • ​You MUST use your PERSONAL Google account to sign up for a Google Voice number.
    • You can select the options for using your Google Voice number for texting, voicemail, etc. by clicking on the number & changing the setting for each option.
  • Google Voice Tutorials: (click the links below)

 

Remind 101- is a free communication tool built for teachers to allow them to safely & quickly communicate information to parents and students.  Participants sign up and choose to receive information through email, texts or within the app.  What is Remind?  Learn more by clicking here.

  • Method for access: Go to www.remind.com & click sign up.  Once you have entered your information it will have you choose teacher, student or parent.  Choose teacher, follow the directions & add the information on the next few screens.  It will generate a class name & provide resources for you to give to students to join your class.  Once members have joined your class you can create an announcement by clicking on the class you want to send it to & typing your text in the announcement box.  Note: You can send to more than one class at a time by adding it to the to box.  You also have the ability to attach a file & schedule announcements.  
  • Must knows:
    • ​Remind now has a chat feature that allows your class to chat with you.  You can access this by typing a message & sending in your Remind window.  
  • Remind Tutorials: (click the links below)

Screen Recording Options - These resources give you the ability to record your voice and/or face while sharing your screen to demonstrate a lesson or concept.  There are many out there free or paid.  The link below will take to a few that are free or partly free.  Screencastify is providing a code to upgrade their free version for to premium during this time.  

Teacher Website Blog - You have the option to create and manage a teacher blog. For communicating with your students or parents. When you add a blog post you will see a posting time option as well as a check box to allow for comments to be posted. (you will have to go in and manage/approve blog posts).

  • Method for access: Login to your teacher website & click on the classroom you want to share the blog with.  Click "Manage Blog" then "Add Blog Post".  This will give a dialog box to create the title of your post, deliver your information, choose a posting date & time & even upload an image if you need to.  Important - to allow students to comment to your post, you must check the box above "Save Blog Post" that allows for comments. You will still be required to approve the comment posts before they are published to the web.  

Email - Use of district email is also a method of communication that can be used to assist students on an iLearn day.  

  • Method for access: Email can be accessed by logging in from the mail link on the district webpage.  Both faculty & students can access email from this location.
  • Must knows:
    • ​Students need to have the teacher's email address so that he or she will know where to make contact.
    • Students need to know how to access their student email accounts, as well as, send & reply to emails.

Phone/Text - Teachers home and/or cell phone may be made available if teacher so desires to students who may need to call or text for help on an iLearn day.


ALTERNATIVE OPTION TO THE ABOVE MENTIONED VIDEO CONFERENCING OPTIONS: 
***Many of you have been using Zoom.  The district does not want to prevent staff from doing that, but please make note of the guidance document that outlines the most secure methods possible in conducting a Zoom conference.*** Click Here to Access the What You Need to Know Guide.

Zoom - From Zoom..it is the leader in modern enterprise video communications, with an easy, reliable cloud platform for video and audio conferencing, collaboration, chat, and webinars across mobile devices, desktops, telephones, and room systems. (www.zoom.com/about)