Monthly Archives: December 2020

Using Microsoft Whiteboard During Teams Meetings

Have you often wondered how teachers use their iPads to demonstrate content to students? Many teachers utilize Microsoft Whiteboard in coordination with Microsoft Teams. Microsoft Whiteboard is simply a digital dry erase board that you can use as a stand-alone tool or collaboratively with students. This tool also allows teachers and students to create a digital product that can include features such as photos, shapes, drawings, text, backgrounds, etc. To learn more about using Microsoft Whiteboard during a Teams Meeting, please check out this resource. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact one of your Wood County Schools Technology Integration Specialists.

Recently Install Teams on a New MacBook?

As MacBooks are dispersed to elementary and middle school educational professionals, installing Office 365 apps will now include Teams app installation. The installation is very simple; however, there is one extra step needed in order to share your screen with your students. Watch the two minute video to learn how.

Install Office 365 apps, including Word, Outlook, PowerPoint, Teams, and more.

Learn more about Microsoft Teams.

MacBook Rollout Begins

Beginning today, MacBooks will be rolling out to elementary and middle school professional educators. The MacBook provides a powerful tool for teachers working with students both in-person and remotely. Working in tandem with an iPad, teachers will be better positioned to effectively engage with their students using Microsoft Teams when working with remote learners. MacBooks also share common software and communication options across the Apple ecosystem, lessening cross-platform issues and frustrations.

Working with colleagues since the beginning of the pandemic, one common theme I hear often is concern or outright anxiety about the significant learning curve experienced in the adoption of our new learning management system, Schoology, the challenges of engaging students via video conferencing using Microsoft Teams, and adapting their content to be delivered virtually rather than in-person. The good news is that teachers have risen to the challenge. For many, the level of discomfort and anxiety has lessened. In fact, many have mentioned that they are surprised at the level of technological skill they have acquired since the beginning of the pandemic. The learning curve is still a challenge, however.

For teachers accustomed to using Windows-based computers, the Mac operating system (OS) on a MacBook would seem like another challenge. Many may discover that they are already familiar with aspects of the OS after using an iPad for instruction. In fact, many have iPhones that they use every day. Apple tends to keep experiences similar across devices, so, for example, using Apple Classroom on an iPad is almost identical to using Apple Classroom on a Mac.

Multiple teams across Wood County Schools have collaborated extensively in the planning process to help make the adoption of MacBooks as smooth as possible.

The Academic Coaches, along with the Technology Integration Specialists, have created a Schoology course to assist you with questions you may have about a MacBook. From where to find the power button to how to install Office 365 products, including Teams and Outlook, the course allows you to start from the beginning and work at your own pace, or jump around and just learn concepts based on your needs.

Innovate also provides videos and how-to information for beginners as well as advanced users.

You will find these resources linked below, but we want you to know that we are here to support you. The technology integration specialists, Jimmy Stewart, Amber Matty, as well as myself, along with Academic Coaches, Greg Merritt, Joanna Mulligan and Candace Lewis want to help you find success using your new devices.

The MacBook Essentials Course on Schoology is open and ready to use. As teachers, we know all about learning styles. Learn in ways that work best for you.

Welcome to MacBook

World Book Now Available on Schoology

World Book Online Status

Update: World Book within Schoology does not play friendly with Google Chrome browser. It does, however, work well with Safari on both a desktop and iPad. If you are being asked to login, you need to turn off “prevent cross-site tracking” under Safari settings. After turning this off, refresh your Schoology page and then click on World Book again.

More great news! The WV Library Commission provides access to World Book Online and it is now integrated with Schoology for easy access. Teachers and students can use any device connected to the Internet to access World Book’s suite of digital resources that covers all subjects and grade levels.

In addition to informational articles that we expect from an encyclopedia, there are WebQuests, science projects, pictures and videos, games, activities, printable graphic organizers, current events and so much more. Teachers can search for materials using state standards and share materials with students via direct links. There are accommodations to have material read aloud or translated as well; it really is a wonderfully comprehensive addition to the educational toolbox. World Book’s product descriptions from their training guide may help you decide where to start.

Early Learning

The perfect tool for pre- and emergent readers to explore independently or learn with an adult. Developed with experts on early childhood education, Early Learning is designed for preschool students with tools and content that reinforce early childhood curriculum via short videos, read-aloud stories, printable activities, and matching and tracing games, among others. The guided reading program, lesson plans, and curriculum correlations make teaching easier for educators and parents.


An ideal learning resource for elementary-aged students designed to build confidence and encourage creativity with image-driven navigation and inquiry-based activities. The site features easy-to-read articles that can be read aloud or translated and a wealth of engaging games, science projects, and activities. Encourage self-direction with our visual navigation in Explore, independent learning with WebQuests, and compare and contrast skills with Compare Animals and Compare Places. Additional teaching tools for educators and parents make this a complete solution for elementary-aged students.


A one-stop shop for cross curricular learning, Student includes translations to 100+ languages, a Biography Center, current events, research guides, and seamless integrations with Google Classroom and Microsoft OneDrive. The My Research and Citation Builder features assist learners in organizing and analyzing their findings. World Book’s beloved encyclopedia comes to life in a digital format, perfect for elementary and middle school learners to access information from trusted sources.


In a world of digital news, World Book Advanced gives high school students and adults a reliable source to check the facts. The In the Headlines live news feed and world newspapers promote global awareness and international perspective. Primary source documents, biographies, Back in Time articles, and Teaching with Documents all aid in more in-depth and conceptual understanding within the classroom curriculum.


Dive in to history with this unique, interactive view! World Book Timelines offers hundreds of pre-generate timelines across eight broad topics, which cover various time periods in history or span the life of historical public figures. Users can also create their own timelines from scratch, adding events, descriptions, and media.


The World Book eBooks site includes highly illustrated, engaging titles that support a span of curriculum areas and reading levels. A subscription includes automatic updates and revision to eBooks, as well as any new titles that are added to the site.


World Book Discover offers engaging reference resources for students reading below grade level because of language or learning difficulties, with content and tools specifically developed for these students.

Enciclopedia Estudiantil Hallazgos

The ideal Spanish-language reference tool for those learning Spanish and ELL students. Browse features provide visual prompts, and bilingual features allow students to toggle between Spanish and English text. The site includes concise articles, videos, maps and activities more.

To access World Book Online, look in the lower left portion of the screen while in any of your Schoology courses and click on it. Decide which product best fits your needs for the task at hand and explore how this exciting resource can benefit you and your students from the very youngest scholars on up.

Be sure to check out the comprehensive training guide to learn more about this powerful resource and how it can enrich the teaching and learning process. There are public webinars, educator starter kits, distance learning ideas, letters that can be sent to families, and lots of tools for sharing this resource with your students. Keep in mind that the training guide will have information on World Book products that we do not currently have access to in WCS. The WV Library Commission is providing access to eight products highlighted above, and that is wonderful!

Product descriptions from

Welcome to TeachingBooks

TeachingBooks is an ever-expanding database of resources provided by WCS libraries to enrich teaching and student learning experiences with books. Students can gain insight from authors and illustrators directly with videos and interviews. There are lesson plans, novel guides, author name pronunciations, author performances, and so much more. There are so many multimedia resources that I can’t begin to list them all. There are over 1500 complete book readings that are searchable and sharable, and they are all multiuser which means your entire class can listen to the same book reading. There are many options for sharing as illustrated here for Kwame Alexander’s author page. Imagine labels placed right inside the covers of the books!

Listen to the humorous story about his name and explore lots of resources for his books.

You can access Teaching books right from Schoology. While in any of your Schoology courses you can click directly on on the lower left side. Make sure your pop-up blocker is off or you allow TeachingBooks. You should get a window as illustrated below where you can log in with Clever right under “Sign in”. You will then be asked to sign up for your educator account that can be used to share resources, customize lists and explore in depth how TeachingBooks can boost your literacy instruction.

There are video tutorials and a training slide deck to reveal additional resource items. In addition, you can request a webinar and TeachingBooks will be more than happy to customize one to your specific needs. They can be as brief as you need them to be and you only need a couple of participants to request a webinar. They are wonderful to work with as you explore the value of this multimedia resource for you and your students.