June 12, 2014

ISTE 2014: Pro tips & Conference Badge Giveaway

Attending #ISTE2014? We’ve compiled a list of tips and tricks to help you get the most out of your conference experience! We’re also giving away a full pass to the conference below.

  • Take care of yourself - Bring a refillable water bottle to stay hydrated, snacks to stay energized, comfortable shoes for walking and get some sleep so you can take in everything ISTE has to offer. 
  • Come prepared - Print address labels with your relevant contact information or bring business cards. This will save time and inaccuracies when providing someone with contact information. Also, don’t forget your device charger!
  • Spend your time wisely - There won’t be time to do everything… make the most of the time you have available! A lot of vendors will have the option to get most of their information online, so take that into factor when budgeting your time.
  • Get social - Don’t be afraid to talk to people! Even if you’re attending alone, don’t hesitate to approach people… you’ll be surprised how much you learn.
  • #ISTE2014 - Follow the hashtag on twitter to keep up with everything that’s happening! Twitter is a great way to share what you’re learning and learn from others who are attending. Can’t make the show? Follow the hashtag for quick recaps!
  • Stop by and say hi! - The Squirrels team at booth #3660! Come learn helpful information about taking your connected classroom to the next level, enter the prize drawing and meet our awesome staff.

Not attending #ISTE2014? We are giving away a full conference badge and 10 Expo passes (travel, lodging, and other expenses not included) to one lucky winner. 

Good luck!

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November 15, 2013

Reflector and AirPlay in the Classroom

Reflector has many uses, but in the classroom, we find an AirPlay receiver to be an effective and almost indispensable tool. Displaying an iPad to a classroom or group of students  can be done by mirroring to a computer connected to a projector. Most classrooms already have the equipment needed to do this.

An AirPlay receiver as a document camera

Reflector gives teachers the ability to move around the classroom while teaching. Instead of being tied to a desk, educators can interact and engage directly with students. Many teachers find Reflector to be an effective mobile document camera.

When a teacher is interacting with students and recognizes work that could benefit the class, Reflector allows the teacher to stop and show the class what that student is doing. This can be particularly helpful when showing steps to solve a math problem.

Brian Meehan, Director of IT at Allendale Columbia School, described the use of Reflector in Geometry.

Students studying geometry take pictures of objects in their lives. Then we launch 2 or 3 windows of Reflector on the teacher laptop (connected to a smartboard) and students use the SMART tools to measure angles and congruency.

Below, @MrMiahScience demonstrates Reflector on a white board.

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Using an AirPlay receiver to flip the classroom.

Reflector puts students in charge of the classroom. Students can create work that  can be shown to an entire classroom without complicated setups.

Sharan Shah, Head of Grade Seven, Avenues: The World School explained.

With Reflector, I’m not always the one in charge of what is being shared on the screen. It’s another way of moving into a student-centered classroom.

Reflector makes handing off a lesson to students easy, and it’s more engaging than traditional learning. Students have the ability to project directly from their seats.

Giving students the power to teach the class is engaging and challenges traditional teaching methods. Instead of paper flash cards, students can go head-to-head isolating word problems. Students can explain geographical areas with interactive maps, or they can browse through timelines explaining certain points they chose. Reports exploring the animal kingdom or ancient Rome can be shared with the entire class by any student.

Using Reflector to monitor students

Amy Burns, a music educator in Far Hills, NJ, explains her use of Reflector in the class room at her blog. She’s using Reflector to keep track of her students’ progress on projects by projecting their iPads to a SMART board. For more privacy, she can turn the board off and monitor directly from her laptop screen.

An Apple TV AirPlay receiver alternative

At $99, the Apple TV may be too expensive for some education environments. Reflector works on almost any computer, and if a classroom is equipped with a projector and computer, Reflector can engage every student at the same time.

Reflector is an inexpensive AirPlay receiver available for $12.99. Educational and bulk rates are available to help schools make purchases.  Not only is Reflector much less expensive than hardware devices, it replaces fragile dongles, cables, adapters and other pieces of expensive hardware. These extra pieces are often lost among students and staff. Reflector stays put and is managed directly by IT staff.

Other samples of Reflector in the classroom include:

  • Connect classrooms across the country or world 
  • Watch and comment on YouTube videos
  • Annotate documents with students in real time
  • Display photos of other student work
  • Demonstrate apps
  • Use whiteboard apps to explain ideas
  • Create video tutorials for students to follow

We’re finding new uses for Reflector in the classroom every day. Have your own use? Tweet @ReflectorApp and let us know!

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!