Author Archives: Eric Murphy

About Eric Murphy

The Technology Integration Specialist develops and offers district wide instructional technology education for teachers and administrative staff and assists in the development and implementation of curriculum and technology integration projects.

Use a Website Frequently in a Lesson? Preserve it and Make it Better

Do you use webpages or online articles frequently in your lessons? Are you concerned that one day you will discover that it has disappeared or changed dramatically?

Perhaps the content is useful, but you are concerned about the appropriateness of the advertising in the sidebars of the website.

Have you ever started a lesson only to find out that the internet just went down and the online content you had planned to use is now upended?

Apple provides a very useful tool on an iPad which allows you to skirt all these issues. No more plan B.

What you will learn in this article

  1. Using screen capture on an iPad
  2. Capturing a webpage and saving as a PDF (for future offline use)
  3. Using Apple’s ‘Reader’ view to ‘clean up’ view of article and make it accommodating for special populations
  4. Marking up documents for your lesson

What you will need to have

  1. iPad
  2. Internet connectivity
  3. Access to your OneDrive (OneDrive sign in is the same as your @k12 email address)

Most of us are familiar with screen-capturing an image on an iPad. If you aren’t, simply click both the lock-out button at the top and the home button at the same time to save an image to your photos app.

Click round home button and top screen lock out button to screen capture the screen’s image.

Screen capturing images on an iPad is a great way to quickly capture and store information. With this feature, you can easily capture high resolution images of websites, documents, and presentations for later reference or sharing. It’s also useful for creating quick visual notes or tutorials. Additionally, it can be used to create digital portfolios of projects that you’ve worked on or for quickly archiving important screenshots without having to take the time to save them as individual files.

If we were preparing a lesson about art history and choose to exemplify the accomplishments of Frida Kahlo, we might choose a website for students to read background information about the artist.

When pressing the home button and lock out buttons simultaneously, a small thumbnail image of the webpage will appear on the screen in the lower-left.

Screen capture thumbnail highlighted in pink

Tap the thumbnail image to bring up more options. The thumbnail disappears after seven seconds if you don’t tap it. If you miss it, just do another screen capture. You will see the following screen. Note that you have options to edit and markup the screen capture using the built-in markup tool indicated below by the pink arrow.

Capturing the content as a PDF

Here comes the real magic when screen capturing a webpage. If you want to capture the whole page and not just the visible image on the screen, you can choose “Full Page” from the top of the screen. This will allow you the option to save the entire webpage as a PDF file (Portable Document Format — think Adobe) that you can save in OneDrive to use with this lesson year after year. No more worries about the content changing, the article disappearing, or internet availability.

Notice the visual image of the entire webpage (highlighted in pink) on the rightmost part of the webpage in the image above. Rather than just capturing the image on the screen, you are capturing the full webpage.

In the video below, let’s learn how to save this as a PDF.

That’s it! That’s all you need to do to save a webpage as a PDF and keep it forever.

Taking it a step further

Apple Safari web browser has a feature called Reader that allows for different formatting options when viewing a webpage. Utilizing this feature in conjunction with what we learned above gives you even more options.

Take a look at the images below. Slide the arrows back and forth to see the regular view versus the Reader view.

example 1
example 2

Changing the view to Reader view allows your students to focus on the content that is most important. It also allows for better focus for students with special needs. Also, as it basically narrows down webpages to the core content located in the body of the webpage (leaving off any sidebars), it will usually exclude any advertising content that may be inappropriate for your students. Keep in mind, Reader view is not available for every webpage. More complicated webpage formatting usually precludes Reader view.

Reader view also gives you options for changing both the font type and size. It also allows you to change the background color as you see in the set of images below.

To use Reader view, simply touch the “aA” in the browser address bar as shown below:

Marking up the PDF documents

It is easy to markup these documents. As an educator, you may wish to highlight certain content for students. Or, perhaps, you want your students to highlight content or comment on it.

Apple markup tools make it easy to do this.

If you would like to markup the document prior to saving it as a PDF and storing it in OneDrive, select the markup tool in the toolbar (indicated by a pen tip) as highlighted by a pink arrow in the image below.

When you are finished marking up the document, simply choose “Done” in the top-left of the screen to save.

If you use Apple Classroom to enhance your instruction and manage the student use of iPads, you can now easily AirDrop this document to all of your students. You can also add it to your Schoology course, which could be brought back each year from your Schoology class archive.

If you would like additional assistance with anything that we learned today or you would like assistance with AirDropping and Apple Classroom, please do not hesitate to reach out to Jimmy Stewart or Eric Murphy. We are happy help.

Microsoft 365 Workshops Offered

MICROSOFT OFFICE 365 WORKSHOPS: In the month of January, the West Virginia Department of Education (WVDE) is offering multiple Microsoft Office 365 live virtual trainings that are available to West Virginia education administrators, teachers, service personnel, substitutes, and students. Click here to view the calendar of trainings online. There is also a library of pre-recorded tutorials available to view anytime. If you would like to be notified about future training, join the mailing list. All live trainings in January will be conducted on Microsoft Teams and can be accessed at this meeting link

Meet indi by Sphero

Working with early learners? It’s never too early to begin teaching computational thinking skills and problem solving. Sphero, makers of the spherical coding robots, have introduced a new product that is aimed at younger students. Introducing the Sphero indi. It allows students to connect all kinds of ideas and understand how they can be used such as colors and shapes, and then using colors and shapes to determine the speed and direction of a robot. And, unlike Sphero’s robots used by older students, no devices are needed to perform the coding. If you are interested in using the indis with your students, make a request and we will get them to you. The kit also contains a teacher’s guide with lesson plans.

“Speed into STEAM with indi—the most approachable entry-level learning robot for ages 4+. indi inspires imaginative, play-based learning by empowering kids to design and build their own mazes while creating opportunities for students to learn the basics of coding, solve problems, and nurture computational thinking skills.”

On Behalf of the WV Department of Arts, Culture and History

The WV Department of Arts, Culture and History (WVDACH) is pleased to announce STEAM Power WV, an innovative grant program that supports education initiatives for West Virginia’s pre-k-12 students.  Partnering with the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation, the WVDACH is encouraging schools and non-profit organizations to integrate the Arts with STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) disciplines in their curriculum and educational programming.

STEAM projects explore the intersections between STEM and the Arts, encouraging innovation, creative problem solving, critical thinking, interdisciplinary teamwork and other aptitudes that are essential to students’ college and career readiness.

Applicants may request up to $7,500 and must provide a cash match of at least 1/3 of the amount requested. The application deadline is October 1, 2022. Projects must take place between January 1, 2023 and December 31, 2023.

STEAM Power WV grant guidelines, application instructions, and the link to apply are available on the WVDACH’s STEAM website:

Please feel free to share this Request for Proposals with other educators as well as with community partners and potential collaborators.

If you have questions about applying, or if you need assistance developing your STEAM project, please contact Jim Wolfe in the Arts Section of the West Virginia Department of Arts, Culture and History. He can be reached at (304) 558-0240 or

Sharing Microsoft Teams Recordings in Schoology

Educators in Wood County Schools’ Distance Learning Academy (DLA) adapt their instruction to deliver lessons in ways that make use of several digital platforms. Although this video was created for educators in the DLA, it can be useful for any educator wanting to find additional ways to record (and protect) their instruction for students. Perhaps their students are at home with health issues. Or, perhaps one of their students learns better by viewing a lesson more than once on her or his own timeline.

In this video: Learn how to record your instruction using Microsoft Teams and then share the recording in your Schoology course.

Graphic Organizers, Brainstorming, & Ticket-Out-the-Door

Finding Useful Ways of Integrating Microsoft Whiteboard Into Your Instruction

Using Microsoft’s recently updated Whiteboard application allows you and your students to quickly brainstorm ideas, use KWL charts, Venn diagrams and so much more. You can even create a ticket-out-the-door on the fly!

Use a Whiteboard in Myriad Ways

You ask, “What would I use a whiteboard for in my classroom?

The beauty of a whiteboard application is that it is as flexible as your imagination. This makes it as adaptable to the needs of a preschool teacher as to the needs of someone teaching advanced algebra or honors world history. Whiteboards are great for brainstorming sessions, activating prior knowledge, creating interactive graphic organizers, problem solving, critical thinking, classroom collaboration and Wait Time (aka Time-to-Think).

Getting Started

Open Microsoft’s Whiteboard by visiting or download the app on your iPad. Sign in using your Microsoft 365 account (this is the same as your email login credentials). The demonstration below is using the application on a webpage; however, Whiteboard is a PWA experience, which simply means that it works basically the same across all platforms. The tools and templates are the same on a laptop as on a tablet. It also means that you can start creating on your laptop and later continue on your iPad.

Setup a Simple Brainstorming Whiteboard

Follow these steps to learn how quick and easy it is to create a brainstorming template:

How can I use Whiteboard in my classroom?

There as several ways you can use a Whiteboard in your classroom. Depending on the lesson or activity, you may use a Whiteboard in multiple modes.

  • Airplay your Whiteboard from your iPad to a presentation screen such as a large television or projector — This method allows for walking around the room and easily engaging students.
  • Airplay from another device such as a MacBook (a smartphone works too!).
  • Share a link to the Whiteboard for students to view on their iPads. Simply add a link in your Schoology course for easy access.
  • Access from within Microsoft Teams. This can be used for both distance learning and brick-and-mortar instruction. For brick-and-mortar instruction, simply ask students to mute their microphones and turn off video.
  • Export the Whiteboard as a PNG image file for adding to your Schoology course or for AirDropping (in Apple Classroom) directly to students.

Application Overview

Let’s take a look at using Whiteboard so you can get started finding awesome ways to include this as a tool in your instruction.

How can I collaborate with my students?

By its very nature, whiteboards are designed to be collaborative. Using Whiteboard with your students allows for a more engaging instructional experience and allows students to use real-world tools that business, industry, and academia are using today. They learn skills they will need to compete with other students when they enter college or technical training.

When using Whiteboard to collaborate with students, be aware of some differences between the standalone version found on tablets and on, and the version built-in to Teams.

  • The Teams version gives the teacher the option to toggle on or off the option for students to contribute to the whiteboard. However, this version does not allow you to select Whiteboard files that you have already created. You have to start from scratch in the Teams meeting. The whiteboard remains with the data of the meeting so you can always return to it later.
  • The app version found on tablets and at allows for contribution from students, but there is no on/off switch to toggle. It’s either no contributions (or limited contributions) from students or the board is wide open for all. Unlike the Teams version, this version allows you to create Whiteboards ahead of time and keep them indefinitely. You are able to turn the sharing on and off, however, when off, access is removed for students to be able to contribute. It also means they can no longer view the document.

Where can I find Whiteboard?

You can easily download Whiteboard by searching keywords ‘Microsoft’ and ‘Whiteboard’ in Apple’s App Store. Students can find the app in Self Serve.

Where can I find assistance?

Find help on Microsoft’s website for many of the most common questions. Ready to move to the next level? Use Microsoft’s Tips & Tricks to learn more. Thinking about using Whiteboard in your classroom but need some ideas how you could use it or you just need some one-on-one assistance, reach out to Jimmy Stewart or Eric Murphy. Either would be happy to help you get started and take engagement to the next level.

GoGuardian Got You Down?

GoGuardian Update

As of February 22, 2022, use of GoGuardian has been discontinued by Wood County Schools.

Are you experiencing issues visiting legitimate websites for your instruction? It may be blocked by GoGuardian. Request that the website or specific URL be whitelisted so you can get back on track. The new tech work order system, SchoolDude, now offers this option.

Sign in to your SchoolDude account.

Under ‘Work Type,’ choose Whitelist Request.

GoGuardian Deployment on February 9

GoGuardian Update

As of February 22, 2022, use of GoGuardian has been discontinued by Wood County Schools.

On behalf of Jonathan Farley, WCS Management Information Services Director:

Go Guardian is being deployed to staff Macbooks and iPads on February 9th.   It will be pushed out before 7:00 AM that day.  Devices will grab the update as soon as they come online.      

It will appear on your iPad and you may have to look through your apps.

On MacBooks, you will need to look under your launchpad to find the Go Guardian app.

For launchpad, look for either icon:

You will need to launch the Go Guardian app which looks like this:

Once you have successfully launched the app you will get a screen that shows the following:

Once you see the above screen your internet browsers will work as normal.