February 6, 2018

What to expect from Squirrels at TCEA

The Squirrels team is headed to the Texas Computer Education Association (TCEA) conference in the beautiful city of Austin! We’re ready to show Texas educators what we’ve been up to since they last saw us at ISTE 2017.

TCEA is an organization that’s devoted to the use of technology in education. We’re honored to share our solutions at its annual conference to show educators how to use technology to improve collaboration, save time and eliminate common inefficiencies caused by classroom devices. 

What to look for at TCEA?
Discover how to make your classroom devices an integral part of the learning experience with Reflector Teacher and ClassHub.

The all new Reflector Teacher is a leap forward from our classic Reflector technology. It's specially optimized for teachers and students for fast and reliable screen-mirroring in the classroom. Display devices on the big screen for everyone to see. 

Come see Reflector Teacher for yourself in booth 1257. Not going to TCEA? Learn more on our website

ClassHub is a device management and monitoring solution that opens amazing new possibilities for teachers and students in the classroom. It’s sure to jump to the top of your wish list once you see how ClassHub changes the way educators use classroom devices. Hint: you won't have to wonder how students are using devices ever again!

Attending TCEA with your district admins? Bring them by our booth -- we're happy to show you how ClassHub can be used by your entire school. Or, contact us for more information. 

Sessions to attend at TCEA

Squirrels director of professional development Becky Shiring and Alpha Squirrels program manager Emily Carle Hafer are bringing their “Pizza, Projects, People: Startup Culture in the Classroom” to TCEA! Don’t miss an in-depth discussion on taking risks, innovation and of course…the pizza wheel!

Plus, keep sessions by Alpha Squirrels Vanessa Perez and Cori-Coburn Shiflett in mind when building your session schedule! Information below.

Wednesday, February 7

Becky Shiring
It’s Gettin’ HOTT in Here: Promoting Higher Order Thinking with Technology
12:45 – 1:45 p.m.
Room 18A

Thursday, February 8

Vanessa Perez
Hands On: Sketchnoting for Students and Teachers
1:30 – 3 p.m.
Room 4AB

Emily Carle Hafer
Becky Shiring
Pizza, Projects, People: Startup Culture in Schools
3 – 5 p.m.
Ballroom G, Poster 8

Cori Coburn-Shiflett
Walking the Walk with Apps That Talk
3:30 – 5 p.m.
Room 9B

Find us in booth 1257 where you’ll see the latest and greatest in classroom technology from Squirrels! See you in Texas!

January 23, 2018

Squirrels Team Goes To FETC

Members of the Squirrels team are ditching the frigid Ohio winter to travel to the Sunshine State for the 38th National Future of Education Technology Conference. We can already feel the sun on our frostbitten skin!

What’s FETC?
FETC is one of the largest EdTech conferences where preK-12 educators connect and collaborate to learn how to leverage technology for student success. Educators from Florida and beyond gather for an intensive, highly collaborative exploration of new technologies, best practices and pressing issues.

What to look for at FETC
Make sure booth 1545 – the Squirrels booth – is on your must-see list!

Reflector Teacher is making its first public appearance. It’s equipped with an all new user interface, and it’s now specially optimized for teachers and students using devices in the classroom.

Attendees also have an incredible opportunity to see ClassHub in person. ClassHub is a device management and monitoring solution that opens amazing new possibilities for teachers and students in the classroom. It’s sure to jump to the top of your wish list once you see what you can accomplish with ClassHub in the classroom.

Alpha Squirrel sessions at FETC
No conference is complete without Alpha Squirrel sessions. FETC has 52! If you want  details on the latest and greatest education trends, tips and practices, check out the sessions below. These are just a few of the many great FETC sessions hosted by Alpha Squirrels. 

Wednesday, January 24

Avital Aharon and Orly Rachamim
Tomorrow’s Teaching Toolkit: Using EdTech to Enhance Instruction
4 – 5 p.m. Booth 2405

Thursday, January 25

Monica Burns
Tasks Before Apps: Elevate and Energize Traditional Learning Experiences
10 – 11 a.m.
North 320AB

Bryan L. Miller
EdTech Brand Partnerships, Ambassadorships and Beyond!
4:20 – 5:00 p.m.
North 320H

Friday, January 26

Michael Meechin
Sixty in Sixty: 60 Instructional Technologies in 60 Minutes
10 – 11 a.m.
North 320AB

Other great FETC sessions

Check out these sessions hosted by Squirrels director of professional development Becky Shiring and Squirrels program manager Emily Carle Hafer.
 

Drowning in Devices? Learn to Manage the Digital Classroom
Thursday, January 25, 10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Bayhill 20 

Pizza, Projects, People: Create a Startup Culture in Your School
Friday, January 26, 11 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Booth 2405

Also, catch our friend Leslie Fisher's session:

Tools You Can Use Tomorrow to Lead With Technology
Thursday, January 25, 1 – 1:40 p.m.
North 320AB

Don't forget...
Stop by booth 1545 at FETC to see the latest and greatest in classroom technology from Squirrels.

January 22, 2018

Vote Alpha Squirrel Session Proposals to ISTE 2018

For the first time ever, the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) is asking you to help pick session topics for its annual conference and expo in Chicago!

The People’s Choice contest allows anyone to vote for their favorite proposal ideas. ISTE will include the top vote getters in the final conference agenda.

We’re proud to announce that we have 10 Alpha Squirrels in the running to present at ISTE 2018, as well as Squirrels director of professional development Becky Shiring. 

Vote now through January 26 until 5 p.m. Browse proposals and vote for as many as you like. As Cady Heron from the movie “Mean Girls” would say, the limit does not exist!

Click the links below to vote for Alpha Squirrel sessions.

Phil Hintz (co-presenter Carl Hooker, Leo Brehm, Adam Phyall)The 4 Horsemen of the APPocalypse
Phil HintzCoding Across the Curriculum: Building a Culture of Coding in Elementary Classrooms
Travis LapeEliminate Grade Levels and Empower Learners to Drive Their Learning
David LockhartBuilding it up with Bloxels
David LockhartThe Super Spark: 60 Tools to Start the Fire
Natasha Rachell/Felissa Ford/Melissa Dandy WalkerPeanut Butter and Jelly, Google and Microsoft, You Don’t Have to Pick
Natasha Rachell (co-presenter Aleigha Henderson-Rosser)Facebook/Twitter Took Over Our District and We Couldn’t Be Happier
Tricia LouisIs Your District Web Content Accessible
Billy SpicerSmart Video Creation to Empower the Student Broadcaster, Reporter and Reflective Learner
Rosalyn WashingtonElevating Student Voice with Hip Hop and Instructional Technology
Jason Davidson (co-presenter Eric Bennet)Pod Save the Classroom: Podcasting in Education
Angie Kalthoff (co-presenter Diana Fenton)Beyond the Hour of Code
Raymond Africa - Empowering Student Voice Through EdTech Apps
Becky ShiringIt’s Getting’ HOTT in Here: Promoting Higher Order Thinking with Technology

Get ready. Get set. Get voting! This is your chance to help shape the 2018 ISTE Conference and Expo. 

Attend the winning sessions starting Sunday, June 24, at ISTE 2018 in Chicago.

December 22, 2017

Squirrels LLC Introduces New Class of Alpha Squirrels EdTech Experts

The next Alpha Squirrels class adds 10 EdTech experts from three countries (U.S., Canada and the U.K.) and eight states (Michigan, Georgia, Oklahoma, Texas, Missouri, South Carolina, Wisconsin and Ohio). Our Alpha Squirrels program now includes more than 125 education professionals from around the world.

Meet the newest members: 

Check out our full list of Alpha Squirrels team members!

What is the Alpha Squirrels program?

The Alpha Squirrels program brings together a community of like-minded individuals. Alpha Squirrels are experts and advocates in education who attend and speak at industry conferences around the world. They share expertise with fellow education professionals and have the opportunity to influence the direction of our technology advancements. 

Alpha Squirrels receive free licenses of Squirrels products such as Reflector Teacher and AirParrot 2 to use in classrooms or during presentations. They also receive first notice of new product releases.

Want to meet an Alpha Squirrel? Over the next few months, you can catch some of the Alpha Squirrels at FETC in Orlando, CUE in Palm Springs or ISTE 2018 in Chicago.

Alpha Squirrels benefits include:

  • Squirrels-sponsored conference attendance
  • Squirrels-sponsored speaking engagements
  • Opportunities to appear in video interviews
  • Feature on the Squirrels blog or social media accounts
  • Product training
  • #SquirrelsChat moderation
  • Welcome package including T-Shirt, coffee mug/tumbler, sticky notes, water bottle, headphones, pens, pencils
  • Chance to visit Squirrels headquarters

The entire Squirrels team congratulates all of our new Alpha Squirrels! We’re excited to do big things together in the education community. 

We will begin the selection process for the Spring 2018 Alpha Squirrels class in March 2018. Apply today at alpha.airsquirrels.com.

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.

December 20, 2017

#SquirrelsChat Recap: Computer Science + Coding in the Classroom

Students need certain skills to survive and thrive in our digital world.

Problem solving. Critical thinking. Designing. Creating. 

These are the skills that worksheets and busy work simply cannot provide.

But coding can.

The December #SquirrelsChat took a dive into the topic of coding as innovative educators shared strategy, real-world examples, advice, resources and more for teaching computer science. This chat focused on the first three practices of the K-12 Computer Science Framework.

Building an inclusive computing culture

Considering the needs of all students is essential to producing an inclusive computing culture. Start by involving all students and make coding part of everything they do. Build it into the curriculum, form computer science teams, create after-school clubs, etc. This allows all students to experience coding, incorporate it into what interests them and increase their enthusiasm about the topic.

Collaboration in the classroom

Effective collaboration can lead to better computing outcomes in the classroom. Give students opportunities to work together, talk, build and create. Encourage leadership and team building by allowing students that have more experience to help and teach others.

Applying computational skills

Being able to recognize opportunities to apply computational thinking is a skill that is central to coding. Let’s take a look at a few real life applications from educators using this approach in the classroom.

Hour of Code

This year, 153,941 events registered for the Hour of Code. This global movement is a way of bringing awareness to coding and an introduction to computer science. Anyone can participate in and organize an Hour of Code event. Here are some first-hand experiences.

Coding and computer science resources

There are many computer science resources, programs and applications that help educators jump into coding – Kodable, Minecraft and Code.org to name a few. Take some time to research the tools that make it easy to introduce concepts to students. Remember, start small!

Related reading: Are We Too Late for Computer Science?

How to bring computer science into the classroom

Implementing computer science into the classroom is daunting. Many educators don’t know where to start. A good place to begin is to connect with others, do research, don’t be afraid to ask students for help and jump in. Coding is fun, it’s everywhere and anyone can do it!

Want more great insight into the world of education?

Join #SquirrelsChat every first and third Thursday of the month starting in January 2018. You can stay up-to-date on topics, moderators and any time/date changes by following us on Twitter (@Squirrels). 

Coming up on January 4: Tasks Before Apps with host Monica Burns.

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!