Innovation @ 477 This Week! 2/24/17

HS Health Project
Erik Jacobs had each of his students do a quick recording of themselves using screencastify or a personal device stating why I choose not use. Students then posted their video onto a padlet that was created for each class hour. These short clips were then uploaded into a playlist on YouTube. Each hour had it's own playlist. With playlists you can select Play All so he was able to show the entire class hour's clips with just one click. The videos created were simple and incredibly powerful. Collaborating this way through padlet made it easy for Erik to collect all the videos, and easy for the students to share. Downloading and uploading the videos onto YouTube was also quick and easy.

This project is a perfect example of technology integration at work. This was a change in a project Erik has always done, using tech tools the project was more student driven than teacher driven, saved resources and made a more powerful statement!

Teachers Going Mobile
In the last few weeks Jodi, Ian and Luke have been setting up all classroom teachers at the Middle School with their new MacBook Air laptops. This is part of a district initiative to increase mobility when it comes to technology. Many teachers have been excited about the speed of their new device versus the desktop and the ability to bring it with them when working out of the classroom! Our Primary School teachers have had their devices for a year, next year our Intermediate School will be have their MacBook Air laptops issued as we work towards moving all teaching staff to the new laptops.

We have a great new "robot" in the district! The Swivl is taking observations to a whole new level. It was used last week during observations at the Intermediate and Primary schools. The Swivl holds onto an iPad for filming, the subject being filmed wears a remote on a lanyard and the Swivl follows the subject as they move around the room. This allows for recording of observations without someone holding a camera and without the teacher having to stand in one place....because we all know that rarely happens! Swivl videos are automatically uploaded into a cloud based system and can be reviewed immediately and edited as needed.

How the Swivl can help innovate learning in Princeton:

  • Teachers can choose to film their lesson to review independently for student engagement or to review teaching strategies. 
  • Observational rounds can involve fewer people in the room. 
  • Videos can be shared easily to show the many examples of exceptional teaching that happens in Princeton. Note - we will never share a video without your permission!
  • PLCs can do lesson studies without having to arrange for substitutes. 
The possibilities are endless. 
If you are interested in using the Swivl in your classroom, contact Jodi or Eric. 


I've shared this site with many through the years, but as I scrolled through today I saw many items I know teachers throughout our district would be interested. NAEIR offers organizations access to thousands of brand new, high-quality products for a fraction of retail cost. Office supplies, clothes, toys, toiletries, electronics, books… and all the merchandise is free. Yes. Free! And it’s available to help you make a bigger difference in your community.

NAEIR’s Teacher’s Program is a great way to help teachers stretch out-of-pocket expenses on classroom supplies by providing materials such as arts and crafts items, pens and pencils, highlighters, scissors, incentive items like stickers, and so much more. 
Items available through the Teacher’s Program can be located by clicking the Shop NAEIR button in the upper right corner of the NAEIR Home Page. Teachers have access to Educational Supplies, Best Values, Clearance, Specials, Deal of the Day, and Overstock products. Click here to view products that are currently available.

Individuals that join the Teacher’s Program pay nominal handling charges to receive the products – shipping is free.
In most cases, participants in this program pay less than a third of what the products would cost even at the lowest prices available at deep discount stores.
Here's a tiny example of items I've received for my classroom in the past. I've also used this to use for incentives in workshops and one to one experiences with students.
Paid $13.50 for 70 Makers retail $57
Paid $9.50 for 24 Books - retail $192

Check out getting a FREE teacher account! You can save $100s on the products you are already buying for your classroom!

Link to free teacher account:

Innovation @ 477 This Week 2/10/17


In BreakoutEDU students hunt for clues and solve puzzles to break in to locked boxes. These boxes have anywhere from 1-5 different locks, including word locks, directional locks, key locks, and number locks. Students have to find out which clue helps them solve each specific lock.

Games are created with varying degrees of difficulty and across all subject domains making this activity perfect for any grade level.

Currently our district tech coaches, Mrs. Cook's 2nd graders, Mrs. Johnson's 4th graders and 5th graders from Mrs. Harvala, Mrs. Franson and Mrs. E. Ryan's rooms have participated in different breakouts. All groups have really enjoyed the experience!

To learn more about doing a BreakoutEDU in your classroom, contact Jodi or chat with one of the "Breakout Veterans" listed above!

History Day MN

Today I was honored to be invited to judge the websites created by students at Princeton MS as part of History Day! I was beyond impressed with the hard work and enthusiasm students put into their projects. This year's projects all focused on the theme of Taking a Stand. Students were able to pick their topic, anything they felt represented the theme and then could choose how they would present their project. Display boards, websites, documentaries and performances were included in the assignment choices. Students in every category were selected to have their project go to regionals where they will compete for the World competition! 

This type of project is true 21st Century Skills and innovative learning at work. Students being able to choose a topic of interest to them, explore and represent their topic in such an individual manner is exactly what 21st Century Innovative learning looks like in action! 

Congratulations to all the students for their impressive projects and to all a huge thank to the teachers who made History Day happen. Mr. History from the History Museum shared that no other school attempts history day on this size and scale. He said not only is it impressive to have all students participating but even more impressive to see how students progress in their projects, research and presentations through the years. Great job MS Staff!

Innovation at 477 This Week 2/3/17


MakerSpace is a huge trend in education across the country. This week Princeton joined the wave by adding MakerSpace carts at Princeton Primary and Princeton Intermediate. At Princeton Primary, a Lego Lab & Creator Space cart includes Lego Education tools including Learn to Learn and Story Starter. Both of these tools include standards aligned lessons for students in reading, math, engineering and science. Additionally this cart has Kinex Math and Geometry education kits, Art Tub and a Marble Maze.

At Princeton Intermediate a former laptop cart was repurposed into a mobile MakerSpace. This mobile cart includes a Lego Education Story Starter, many Lego pieces and a Lego table for building and creating, 5 Makey Makey sets, Little Bits STEAM kit, Art Tubs, Learning Games, Maze Challenges, a United States Map puzzle and more. Most of these items were purchased with funds from a EdCamp grant, applied for by the Tech Integration Specialist. 

Why MakerSpace?

MakerSpace (or Creator Space) allows students to develop their vital 21st Century Skills in a fun and engaging manner while still meeting state and national reading and math standards. Allowing students to create and demonstrate their learning in creative ways makes for better learning connections. Look for future Innovation at 477 This Week updates to see how these carts are being put to use!


Principal Barb Muckenhirn at PHS, along with two students launched a new podcast this week. Recording of Episode 1 of Now We Go will be available next week. This podcast is a passion project for Principal Muckenhirn, the purpose of this podcast is to talk about some of the things that make our lives go better and keep us going!  Now We Go!  The show is being edited and produced by junior Josh Fuller and will features guest senior Damon Rademacher for the first 5 episodes. 

Innovation is happening every day in or schools. If you would like to learn more, subscribe to our blog for weekly Innovation Updates! Teachers, contact Jodi Burling if you would like help with collaboration on ideas or co-teaching any innovative teaching ideas!