Keirsten Heckel

Recent Posts

March 28 , 2017

Squirrels LLC Receives 2017 Smart Culture Award

The Squirrels team was selected by Smart Business Magazine to receive the 2017 Smart Culture Award. Squirrels is part of the first class of 28 honorees to accept this award.

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The 2017 Smart Culture Awards spotlights leading companies in northeast Ohio where culture plays a crucial role in a company’s success. This award recognizes organizations that have developed a culture that bolsters productivity, enhances job satisfaction and provides a competitive advantage in the marketplace. A great culture can be a sustainable competitive advantage for an organization.

Culture is about more than just employee compensation and benefits, which is why this recognition is a great honor for us. It’s about an organization’s purpose, vision, mission, values, environment and most importantly, its people. We are committed to giving each of our 36 employees an unparalleled professional experience and a family-oriented atmosphere. Our employee-centric culture is something we will always strive to maintain no matter how large our company grows.

Recipients are based on the following criteria:

  1. How the company demonstrates a unique culture where people want to work
  2. Impact of the company’s culture
  3. Active efforts to expand, strengthen and/or foster company culture

Other honorees include:

 This isn’t the first time Squirrels has been recognized for our culture and camaraderie. In 2015, we were among the 50 Best Workplaces for Camaraderie by Fortune Magazine. We were also ranked third on Fortune’s list of Best Workplaces for Technology.

Squirrels is accepting this award on Thursday, April 6, at the Smart Culture Conference. Stay tuned for pictures of the award ceremony and a peek at our feature video shoot.

Check out our About Us page to learn more about Squirrels and our company culture.

March 16 , 2017

Squirrels Team Showcases New EdTech at CUE and MACUL Conferences

Members of the Squirrels team are attending two regional EdTech conferences this week to demonstrate our new ClassHub technology for educators. 

Our journey takes us to Palm Springs, California, for the Computer-Using Educators (CUE) 2017 National Conference and to Detroit, Michigan, for the Michigan Association for Computer Users in Learning (MACUL) Conference. This is our first time exhibiting at CUE and second at MACUL. Our team will talk to a combined 12,000 attendees about ClassHub along with some of our longstanding education software.

No conference we attend would be complete without Alpha Squirrel sessions and in-booth presentations. Below is the full list of session details for both CUE and MACUL.

CUE Alpha Squirrel Sessions

Thursday, March 16

Marcia Kish
Key Ingredients to Blended and Personalized Learning
10 – 11:30 a.m.
Santa Rosa, Renaissance

Bill Selak
Post-Apocalyptic Skills for the Classroom: Infusing Real-Life Skills into Instruction
3:30 – 4:30 p.m.
Mojave Learning Center, Renaissance

Friday, March 17

Bill Selak
5 to Adopt, 5 to Abandon: How to Implement CUE’s Short List
1 – 3 p.m.
Posters, Ballroom Foyer, Renaissance

James McCrary
Virtual Reality: Power of Creation & Sharing Using CoSpaces
1:30 – 1:50 p.m.
HUB @ CUE (Exhibit Hall)

Bill Selak
Design Thinking and the Singularity
3:30 – 4:30 p.m.
Mojave Learning Center, Renaissance

And, don’t forget to catch our friend, Leslie Fisher on Saturday, March 18:
Tools You Can Use Tomorrow
9 – 10 a.m.
Oasis 4, PSCC 

The Web 2.0 You Might Not Know About
10:30 – 11:30 a.m.
Catalina, Renaissance

CUE In-booth Presentations – How to Make Student Devices Teacher Friendly

Thursday, March 16
9:45 a.m.
11:15 a.m.
12:15 p.m. 

Friday, March 17 
9:45 a.m.
11:15 a.m.
12:15 p.m.

Saturday, March 18
10:15 a.m.
11:30 a.m.

MACUL Alpha Squirrel Sessions

Thursday, March 16

Theresa Stager
Working Smarter, Not Harder: Tech Tools for Administrators
10 a.m.
Room 313B

Innovating and Connecting in Next Generation Schools
4 p.m.
Room 140E

Friday, March 17

Theresa Stager
Global Connections: Breaking Down the Walls of Your Building
10 a.m.
Room 140E

John Phillips
Game Over? A Conversation About What Works and What Doesn’t in Game-Based Learning
11:30 a.m.
Room 142A

Theresa Stager
The Power of Positive Communication
1 p.m.
Room 411A

Stop by booth #654 at CUE or #121 at MACUL to see the Squirrels team! You might even have the opportunity to snag a Squirrels shirt!

March 2 , 2017

Squirrels Joins Educators in North Carolina for NCTIES Conference

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The Squirrels team debuted its latest classroom technology at multiple EdTech conferences around the world in the first two months of 2017. What’s next on the list? The North Carolina Technology in Education Society (NCTIES) Conference in the city of Raleigh, North Carolina.

NCTIES is North Carolina’s premier EdTech conference that gives attendees access to more than 150 sessions, informal meet and greet opportunities, keynote speakers and an exhibit hall. This conference aims to provide leadership in educational communications and technology by linking together everyone who holds a common interest in the use of educational technology and its application to the learning process.

We look forward to meeting all of the great educators of North Carolina! Attendees will see our latest classroom technology, ClassHub, in action at the Squirrels booth (#938). We’ll show educators and district IT administrators how to monitor and manage classroom devices directly from the teacher’s computer.

If you are going to NCTIES this week, be sure to check out these Alpha Squirrel sessions: 

Thursday, March 2

Megan McBain
Broadcasting Around the World
10:30 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Student Showcase

Friday, March 3

Melissa Lynch
More Technology Than You Can Handle
12:30 p.m. – 1:15 p.m.
Room 303

Hannah Jimenez
Front Row: Math + ELA Individualized for Learners
12:30 p.m. – 1:15 p.m.
Room 302 B

As an added bonus, a member of the Squirrels team will give a presentation featuring ClassHub.

Emily Carle Hafer – Alpha Squirrels Program Manager
How to Make Student Devices Teacher Friendly
9-9:45 a.m.
Room 303

Visit the Squirrels team at NCTIES at booth #938. See you there!

February 24 , 2017

Cord Cutter’s Guide: How to Stream the 89th Academy Awards

The Academy Awards, also known as the Oscars, is an awards ceremony that recognizes excellence in cinematic achievements in the United States film industry. Winners are voted on and chosen by more than 5,000 members of The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, 1,000 of which are actors.

The Oscars will be hosted by television host and comedian Jimmy Kimmel with performances by Justin Timberlake, Sting and John Legend. Nominations include Casey Affleck (Actor in a Leading Role), Emma Stone (Actress in a Leading Role) Hidden Figures (Best Picture), Moana (Best Animated Feature Film) and more.

Let the glitz and glam begin, but don’t forget that you don’t need a cable subscription to enjoy the ceremony. Here are three ways that you can stream the Oscars online.

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Sling TV

Sling TV is one of the top ways that cord cutters can stream live TV without a cable subscription. Subscribers who choose the Sling Orange package ($20/mo) have access to the Broadcast Extra bundle ($5/mo) to watch live local broadcast channels, including ABC. Only want to use this service to watch the Oscars? You can try it free for 7 days!

Note: You can only stream ABC Live through Sling TV in select markets around the country. These areas include Chicago, Fresno, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, Philadelphia, Raleigh-Durham and San Francisco. If you live in one of these areas, the ABC live stream will be accessible.

DirecTV NOW

One of the newest solutions for cord cutters is DIRECTV NOW by AT&T. This online streaming service offers you more than 60 TV channels, including ABC, for $35/mo without a contract (or you can try it free for seven days). You can use this service on most streaming devices, including computers and mobile devices.

Basic Antenna Option

Don’t forget the old-fashioned way! Since ABC is over-the-air (OTA) network broadcasting, it’s free to watch with a digital antenna if you live in range of an affiliate. Here’s how to choose the best antenna for you.  

Pro tip:

Finding ways to stream live TV is only half the battle for cord cutters. After all, nobody wants to Natalie Portman receive an award on a tiny computer screen. Download AirParrot 2 on your Mac or PC to wirelessly mirror that live broadcast from your computer directly to an Apple TV or Chromecast.

Use Sling TV app or DirecTV Now in the Chrome, Safari and Firefox browser to stream the event. Then open AirParrot and select your browser as the “From” option. Select your Apple TV or Chromecast as the “To” option. This will allow you to experience all the action on the big screen.

The image below was taken from the AirParrot menu and shows you how to do this. You simply select your browser or application. Then select where to send it. 

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89th Academy Awards
Sunday, February 26
8:30 p.m. ET
Host: Jimmy Kimmel
ABC

February 17 , 2017

Cord Cutter’s Guide: How To Legally Stream NBA All-Star Weekend Events

The best basketball players in the world share the court only once a year – during the NBA All-Star Weekend.

NBA All-Star Weekend showcases the spectacular talents of some of the league’s most skilled players in both the Western and Eastern Conference. From the Verizon Slam Dunk Contest to the Three-Point Contest and of course the 66th NBA All-Star Game, this weekend is sure to impress.

You shouldn't miss out on LeBron James, James Harden, Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant highlights just because you don’t have cable. Here are a few legal ways to stream all of the action online.

Sling TV

Sling TV is one of the top ways that cord cutters can stream live TV without a cable subscription. Subscribers who choose either the Sling Blue package ($25/mo) or the Sling Orange package ($20/mo) have access to a number of channels including TNT. However, if you only want to watch this weekend’s events, you can try Sling TV free for seven days!

DirecTV NOW

One of the newest solutions for cord cutters is DIRECTV NOW by AT&T. This online streaming service offers you more than 60 TV channels, including TNT, for $35/mo without a contract (or you can try it free for seven days). You can use this service on most streaming devices, including computers and mobile devices.

PlayStation Vue

Good news, PlayStation owners! You, too, can stream your favorite channels all from your gaming console. With plans starting at $29.99 a month, Vue offers viewers a large variety of channels, including TNT. This is a great value to cord cutters, and it's compatible with PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4. Try it free!

Pro tip:

Finding ways to stream live TV is only half the battle for cord cutters. After all, nobody wants to watch a slam dunk or an alley-oop on a tiny computer screen. Download AirParrot 2 on your Mac or PC to wirelessly mirror that live broadcast from your computer directly to an Apple TV or Chromecast.

Use your Sling TV or DirecTV Now account in the Chrome or Firefox browser to stream the event. Then open AirParrot and select your browser as the “From” option. Select your Apple TV or Chromecast as the “To” option. This will allow you to experience all the action on the big screen.

The image below was taken from the AirParrot menu and shows you how to do this. You simply select your browser or application. Then select where to send it.

Messages Image(591535406)

Sunday, February 19
NBA All-Star Game
8:00 p.m.
TNT

Let us know if you have any questions in the comments below!

About Us

Squirrels is a software development company based in North Canton, Ohio. Our excitement and passion lies in creating high-qualty, budget-friendly software that can be used to enhance the devices already found in today's home and work environments. Follow our blog for all the latest product releases, #TeamSquirrels news and industry insight!