June 5 , 2017

Squirrels Summer 2017 Reading List

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The school year is over, vacations are on the horizon and oh yeah, ISTE is this month! After the seemingly endless hours of grading papers and preparing lesson plans, summer is the perfect time for educators to relish in the successes of the school year and rejuvenate for the next. So we ask - what better way to do this than with a good book in hand?

To help you find the perfect summer book, members of the Squirrels team share their recommendations below.

 Becky Shiring
Director of Professional Development and Continued Learning

“The Curious Case of Sidd Finch” by George Plimpton
A hilarious book that stemmed from an April Fools’ Day joke article in Sports Illustrated about a baseball player that can throw 168 mph. What more do you need?

“Data and Goliath: The Hidden Battles to Collect Your Data and Control Your World” by Bruce Schneier
This book is a totally shocking look into how governments and corporations collect data on us every day. Most people are apathetic about privacy issues, but this book will change your mind.

“Cloud Atlas” by David Mitchell
This is an epic book that beautifully weaves through time. Mitchell has an amazing ability to write with a different voice through each period of time. 

“The Unthinkable: Who Survives When Disaster Strikes – and Why” by Amanda Ripley
This book totally changed the way I look at the situations I'm in. It basically says that people survive because they practice what to do in emergencies. Also, always look for the exit when you enter a new room!

Jessica Chevalier
Director of Business Intelligence

“Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman's Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia” by Elizabeth Gilbert
It's a great reminder that we learn a lot about ourselves when we step out of our comfort zones. 

Joseph McCulty
Business Analyst 

“Sula” by Toni Morrison
"Sula" is close to "Sulu" and Toni Morrison kind of looks like Uhura. The book itself is decent, but sadly not about Star Trek. 

Connal Kelly
Account Executive 

“The Good Girl” by Mary Kubica
Thriller that keeps you turning the page!

Alissa McGill
Developer Relations Engineer

“Mistress of Dragons” by Margaret Weis
Unique and epic fantasy. Written by one of the authors of the Dragonlance books. It is like Eragon but with more grit and adult themes.

Aaron Rinier

Director of Customer Support

“Killing Kennedy: The End of Camelot" by Bill O'Reilly and Martin Dugard
I really enjoyed reading about Kennedy's time in WW2 in the Navy, and how it influenced the rest of his life. There are a lot of interesting facts about him that I was never taught in school.  Very easy to read also.

Stephen Gerstacker
Senior Developer 

“Stranger in a Strange Land” by Robert A. Heinlein
This book is an interesting reflection on the current political and cultural climate that we're experiencing today. 

Ashley Swinehart
Jr. Front End Web Developer

“Filters Against Folly: How To Survive Despite Economists, Ecologists, and the Merely Eloquent” by Garret Hardin
This book tells you how to think and make decisions through these 'filters' in judgment which must be considered. It's a timeless reference for problem solving.

Mike Bruin
Technical Support Rep

“The Reason I Jump: The Inner Voice of a Thirteen-Year-Old Boy with Autism” by Naoki Higashida
I like this book because it is a quick but vivid and fascinating look into the mind of a special needs child.

Keirsten Heckel
Communications Strategist

“The Girl on the Train” by Paula Hawkins
I love any book with elements of suspense and emotion. The Girl on the Train leaves you questioning whether to empathize with the main character or feel sorry for her, while uncovering a mystery that leaves you on the edge of your seat.

Llaran Smiles
QA Analyst

“The Last of the Renshai” by Mickey Zucker Reichert
This is the first book of an often overlooked fantasy trilogy. It’s very well written with a compelling story.

Emily Carle Hafer
Alpha Squirrels Program Manager

“Along Came a Leader: A Guide to Personal and Professional Leadership” by Kelly Croy
Written by one of our Alpha Squirrels, Kelly Croy's “Along Came a Leader” transcends educational leadership. It's a must read for educators, but the lessons, humor, and insight can be applied in any situation.

“#FormativeTech: Meaningful, Sustainable, and Scalable Formative Assessment With Technology” by Monica Burns
Written by one of our Alpha Squirrels, #FormativeTech tackles two major topics in education: assessment and technology. It can be daunting to connect the two, but Monica does so in a way that is easy to understand and practical. Plenty of "try on Monday" tips for all educators!

“A Wrinkle in Time” by Madeleine L’Engle
“A Wrinkle in Time” is a classic YA novel for all ages that dives into the world of science and fantasy. Bonus: it will be released as a movie in 2018, so you can get a jump start on the story now!

“Big Little Lies” by Liane Moriarty
If you heard the hype around the HBO mini-series of the same name, you need to take the time to read this book. Moriarty knows how to add twists and turns that will keep the reader engaged until the very end.

Jon Bishop
Creative Director of Marketing

“The Dark Tower I: The Gunslinger” by Stephen King
The movie is coming out this summer (ft. Idris Elba and Matthew McConaughey), but it seems to just borrow from King's self-described magnum opus series "The Dark Tower." If you like westerns, horror and sci-fi, it's a great read. Even more, the series connects pillars of King's canon–like IT, The Stand, Salem's Lot and Hearts in Atlantis.

 

If you have any recommendations for us, feel free to leave them in the comments below. 

We want to wish all educators a happy, relaxing and safe summer! Happy reading!

April 10 , 2017

Meet The Spring 2017 Class Of Alpha Squirrel EdTech Experts

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We are excited to introduce the Spring 2017 class of Alpha Squirrel EdTech experts. This class adds eight EdTech experts to the Alpha Squirrels program, which now totals 100 educators located in 28 states and four countries.

The eight new members inducted as part of the spring 2017 class include:

  • Lorien Cafarella – Teacher, Lantana Middle School, Florida
  • Colin Cheng – Tech Ed Provincial Teacher, SETBC, British Columbia
  • Alicia Davis – Digital Learning Specialist, La Grange Elementary, North Carolina
  • Karie Frauenhoffer – Teacher/Makerspace Leader, Southeast Middle School, North Carolina
  • Hannah Jiménez – Digital Learning Specialist, Rochelle Middle School, North Carolina
  • Shaundel Krumheuer – Technology Integration Specialist/Teacher Librarian, Billings Senior High School, Montana
  • Bryan L. Miller – Founder, TopTechEDU, Florida
  • Keven Rinaman – Director of Technology, Calvert Catholic Schools, Ohio

Check out our full list of Alpha Squirrels team members!

These individuals are experts and advocates in the global EdTech community who attend and speak at industry conferences around the world. They share expertise and show fellow education professionals how to use Squirrels technology to create a more collaborative learning environment and make mobile devices more valuable in the classroom.

Alpha Squirrels program manager Emily Carle Hafer emphasized the importance of these educators in helping Squirrels connect with educators around the world.

“Alpha Squirrels bring extraordinary expertise to the table and are constantly teaching us about the world of EdTech,” she said. “In return, we provide support, connections and resources to Alpha Squirrels to aide in their growth and realize their potential.”

Alpha Squirrels use Squirrels classroom technology such as ClassHub, Reflector, Ditto and AirParrot in classrooms and during presentations. They are provided with Squirrels-sponsored conference attendance and speaking engagements. You can catch them presenting at ISTE 2017 in San Antonio, Texas, and many other Edcamps and conferences around the world in 2017.

Other Alpha Squirrel benefits include:

  • First access to unreleased Squirrels products
  • Squirrels welcome package – T-Shirt, coffee mug/tumbler, sticky notes, water bottle, pens, keychain, etc.
  • Access to after-hours Alpha Squirrels social events at conferences
  • Video interview opportunities
  • Free AirParrot 2, Reflector 2 and Reflector Director licenses
  • An Alpha Squirrels member certificate
  • Alpha Squirrel signature badges for Twitter, Facebook and email
  • Product training and talking points
  • On-demand interaction with Squirrels product designers and managers

Congrats to all of our new Alpha Squirrels! We’re proud to have you represent us in the EdTech community.

Are you a teacher or EdTech professional interested in becoming a certified Alpha Squirrel? Contact Emily Carle Hafer at alpha@airsquirrels.com for information about our next class of Alpha Squirrels.

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February 14 , 2017

Squirrels Team Shares New Technology at OETC

The Squirrels team is in Columbus all week for our third conference of 2017: the Ohio Educational Technology Conference (OETC). OETC is one of our favorite conferences of the year because it gives us a chance to connect with local educators in our home state.

OETC has more than 300 vendors and more than 4,000 educational technology professionals and enthusiasts from all over the country. It’s a great place for educators and innovators to network with their peers and share their ideas. Did we mention OETC has EdTech Karaoke?

While our Reflector software will be on display as usual, OETC attendees should also get excited to see what’s next from Squirrels. We scheduled presentations at the Squirrels booth all week to give you a sneak peek at a new technology that will change the way educators use classroom devices. You’re going to love it!
Below is a complete list of all the OETC sessions that feature Alpha Squirrels presenters.


Tuesday, February 14

Leah Lacrosse (with Jon Smith)
Student Publishing with eBook Creator App
C171
2:00-5:00 p.m.

Leslie Fisher
Manage Devices
Short North Ballroom A
2:00-5:00 p.m.

Wednesday, February 15

Leah Lacrosse (with Jonathon Jarc)
3D Printing for a Purpose
C150
8:00-8:45 a.m.

Leslie Fisher
How to Make Student Devices Teacher Friendly
Union Station Ballroom B
11:00-11:45 a.m.

Leslie Fisher
Featured Speaker Session
Union Station Ballroom B
1:15-2:15 p.m.

Thursday, February 16

Marcia Kish
The Personalized Learning Playbook
Short North Ballroom A
8:00-8:45 a.m.

Laurie Green
Do You Compute? Online Assessment Skills
Short North Ballroom B-2
8:00-8:45 a.m.

Laurie Green
Make-ing it Happen
Short North Ballroom B-2
11:00-11:45 a.m.

Squirrels Booth Presentations (booth #801)

Wednesday, February 15

10:45 – 11:00 a.m.
11:45 – 12:00 p.m.
12:45 – 1:00 p.m.

Thursday, February 16

10:45 – 11:00 a.m.

Columbus is the place to be this week! We hope to see you at OETC in booth #801!

 

January 24 , 2017

Meet the Alpha Squirrels at FETC 2017!

Want a chance to meet our amazing group of Alpha Squirrels or see them present? Now’s your chance (you have 31 chances to be exact)!

Below is a complete list of all the FETC sessions that feature our Alpha Squirrels. You may even hear about/see a familiar classroom screen-mirroring solution in action!

FETC Alpha Squirrel Sessions:

Tuesday, January 24
8-10:30 a.m.
David Lockhart
W133: Apple Lovers Delight
@bigguyinabowtie

11-1:30 p.m.
Leslie Fisher
W062: Effective Photo and Video on Your Mobile Devices
@lesliefisher

11-1:30 p.m.
Katrina Keene
W038: Minecraft Education Edition: Building Blocks to Engage Your Students
@teachintechgal

11-1:30 p.m.
Marcia Kish
W026: Blended or On the Rocks: Mixing Up Your Own Blended Learning Environment
@dsdPD

5:00-7:30 p.m.
David Lockhart
W136: Becoming a Presentation Master: Apple Edition
@bigguyinabowtie

5-7:30 p.m.
Leslie Fisher
W064: iPad A to Z: It's ALL About the APPS
@lesliefisher

5-7:30 p.m.
Marcia Kish
W112: App Smashing: Tips and Tricks for IT Professionals Using Google Apps and Add-Ons to Achieve Personalized, Blended Learning
@dsdPD

Wednesday, January 25
8-10:30 a.m.
Katrina Keene
W077: BYODigital Leadership: Building a Grade-A Culture
@teachintechgal

8-10:30 a.m.
Marcia Kish
W089: Personalized Learning Playbook: Creating a Game Plan for Personalized Learning
@dsdPD

11-1:30 p.m.
Leslie Fisher
W114: Augment Your Reality
@lesliefisher

4-4:20 p.m.
Leslie Fisher
SB03: How to Set Up and Deploy Google Classroom
@lesliefisher

Thursday, January 26
8-10:30 a.m.
Kathy Schrock
W067: Visual Notetaking in the Classroom Workshop: iPad, Android, Windows Tablet, or Paper/Pencil
@kathyschrock

8:30-9:45 a.m.
Michael Meechin
General Session: STEM Excellence Awards & Keynote – A Wake-Up Call: Breaking Down Barriers to High-Impact Instruction
@mikemeechin

10-11 a.m.
Katrina Keene
C103: Top Tech Toys to Transform your Classroom
@teachintechgal

10-11 a.m.
Leslie Fisher
C120: Mobile Tools You Can Use Tomorrow
@lesliefisher

10-11 a.m.
Marcia Kish
C107: Secret Ingredients to Blended and Personalized Learning
@dsdPD

12-12:40 p.m.
Kathy Schrock
C203: Virtual Reality: Using and Creating in the Classroom
@kathyschrock

1-1:40 p.m.
Leslie Fisher
C319: The Group Smackdown: Best Teacher-Approved EdTech Tools for the Classroom
@lesliefisher

1-1:40 p.m.
Katrina Keene
C317: Don’t Be Afraid: Ed Tech Companies Won’t Byte!
@teachintechgal

2-2:40 p.m.
Jennifer Williams
Katrina Keene
Courtney Kofeldt
David Lockhart
Billy Spicer
C420: Crafting the Next-Generation Classroom: An Immersive Experience with Nearpod.
@JenWilliamsEdu
@teachintechgal
@CourtneyKofeldt
@bigguyinabowtie
@MrBillySpicer

2-2:40 p.m.
David Lockhart
C414: A Wearable World
@bigguyinabowtie

2-4:30 p.m.
Rob Zdrojewski
W141: The Art of Screencasting: “Teacher-On-Demand” is Now Possible!
@MrZtechTV

3:20-4:00 p.m.
Katrina Keene
C520: Exciting Digital Technology Tools
@teachintechgal

4:20-5:00 p.m.
Leslie Fisher
C619: Leftovers with Leslie: Technology Gadgets, Apps and Websites You Have Not Heard About Yet!
@lesliefisher

4:20-5:00 p.m.
Jennifer Williams
C615: Trending Topics in Early Literacy: Practices & Tools for the Early Childhood Classroom
@JenWilliamsEdu

5-7:30 p.m.
David Lockhart
W034: EdTech Mystery Skype! Have Your Questions Answered!
@bigguyinabowtie

Friday, January 27
8-10:30 a.m.
Rob Zdrojewski
W167: Unlimited Possibilities: Greenscreen Video Production Using iPads!
@MrZtechTV

8:30-9:30 a.m.
Kathy Schrock
Leslie Fisher
General Session: Tech Share Live
@kathyschrock
@lesliefisher

10-11 a.m.
Michael Meechin
C719: Sixty in Sixty: 60 Instructional Technologies in 60 Minutes
@mikemeechin

12-12:40 p.m.
Kathy Schrock
C803: Visual Notetaking in the Classroom
@kathyschrock

12-12:20 p.m.
Leslie Fisher
SB23: How to Use Adobe Spark Video and Spark Page
@lesliefisher

January 23 , 2017

Squirrels Presents Classroom Technology at Bett and FETC

Who run the world? Squirrels!

Thirteen members of the Squirrels team will travel a total of more than 9,400 miles by plane, cab, Uber and train to Orlando, Florida, and London to attend two of the world's premier EdTech conferences.

British Educational Training and Technology Show (Bett)
January 25-28
London, England

The Squirrels team is set to attend the Bett Show for the second time. We're eager to show more than 34,000 educators, administrators and EdTech professionals from over 138 countries how our products and services are used in the classroom.

This international EdTech conference is designed to create a better future by transforming education and bringing people, ideas, practices and technologies together so educators and learners can reach their full potential. Every educator can make a difference in education given the opportunity, which is what Bett aims to provide.

Featured conference keynotes include:

If you’re attending Bett feel free to stop by and say hello to the Squirrels team in booth E378! We would love the chance to meet and connect with our international customers and friends!

Future of Education Technology (FETC)
January 24-27
Orland, Florida

While four members of our team are busy in London, the other seven will be in Orlando exhibiting at the 37th National FETC conference. FETC is one of the largest EdTech conferences where preK-12 educators connect and collaborate to learn how to leverage technology for student success.

If you are attending FETC, make sure to catch these EdTech leaders at one of their sessions:

  • Blended Learning Coach, Marcia Kish
  • Director of Innovation and Co-Founder of Edventure Quests, Katrina Keene
  • Literacy Specialist at Calliope Global and Professor at Saint Leo University, Jennifer Williams
  • EdTech Specialist at Kennesaw State University, David Lockhart
  • Educational Technology Professional Development Trainer, Kathy Schrock
  • Principal at Poinciana High School, Michael Meechin
  • Instructional Coach, Billy Spicer
  • Educational Technology Coordinator at PA Leadership Charter School, Courtney Kofeldt
  • Director of Fisher Technologies Inc., Leslie Fisher
  • K-12 Director of Instructional Technology at Oakland-Alabama Central Schools and Adjunct Professor of Educational Technologies at Canisius College, Rob Zdrojewski

Squirrels co-founder Andrew Gould will give in-booth presentations featuring our new classroom technology on the following days:

Wednesday, January 25
3:15 p.m.
4:15 p.m.

Thursday, January 26
9:45 a.m.
2:45 p.m.
4:00 p.m.

Friday, January 27
9:45 a.m.
11:15 a.m.

Stop by booth #1945 to say hi to the Squirrels team, demo our products and learn about our newest EdTech solution!

Happy learning, all! To see where the Squirrels team will be this year, check out our 2017 conference schedule.

About Us

Squirrels is a software development company based in North Canton, Ohio. We create high-quality, budget-friendly screen mirroring and device management software that’s compatible with today’s most popular devices. To date, our software can be found in hundreds of thousands of classrooms, businesses and homes. Follow our blog for all the latest product updates, Squirrels news and technology insight!