Buzzworthy Apps: Notability

Ginger Labs’ Notability for iOS  is one of the best note taking apps in education.  There is almost no learning curve, which makes it ideal for use in and out of the classroom. If you’ve been using an iPad for any length of time, you’ll feel very comfortable using Notablity as your go to note app.

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Upon starting the app, you’re immediately taken to the “all notes” page.  You can take notes on a plain white screen, or you can click the tool icon and select from several styles of colored and lined paper.

Organization

Organizing your notes is a snap.  Notes can be created to be organized by subject.

Text Input

Text input has several options as well.  You can type via the virtual keyboard, handwrite, or even dictate your notes.   Notability offers a variety of  pen thicknesses from fine point to marker size.  Changing colors is a snap. 

Distribution

Notes can be distributed to an entire class via Google Classroom or via Apple’s Air Drop technology.

Versatility with Sticky Notes

Students who use this app can add a sticky note right from the app.  In this example, we’re using an imported PDF for annotation. Tap the “+” in the upper righthand corner.

 screen-shot-2015-05-20-at-32448-pmpng Next, choose Stickies from the available choices.

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Choose “Typing.”

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You have the option to drag, drop, and resize your sticky note.  You can even change the background color.  Entering text in the sticky note can also be manually typed via the virtual keyboard, dictated, or handwritten with built in pen. 

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Many schools now require students to use Cornell Notes.  Now with Notability, you can insert multiple sticky notes, thus making it an ease to take notes in this popular format.

Voice memos

Using the iPad’s build in microphone to record voice memo’s right in a note is another popular feature.

Cloud Syncing

Notabilty can be configured to sync up with both iCloud or Google Drive.  Once properly configured, notes are stored in the cloud. 

Support

Need help with your device or your school’s devices? Feel free to contact us here at Beehively support@beehively.com.

Professional Development

Beehively offers a wide range of professional development seminars designed to meet the needs of your organization.  Contact your Beehively account representative to further explore these opportunities.

Tips and Tricks: Saving Assignments as a Draft

One of Google Classroom’s new features is the ability to create drafts. Previously, when drafting an announcement or assignment, the only option when you were done was to publish.   Now, your prep work created in Google Classroom is automatically saved as a draft! One may now prep, plan, and prepare for the class without actually assigning the lesson or project just yet.

To create a draft announcement:

  1. Sign in to Classroom at classroom.google.com.
  2. Click the class you’d like to edit or post to  and then click “Annoucement.”
  3. To save the announcement as a draft, click the arrow next to “Post” and select “Save draft.”

To Save An Assignment As A Draft

  1. Sign in to Classroom at classroom.google.com.
  2. Select the class you are working with.
  3. Click “Assignments”.  Populate your the assignment with the information you have in mind.
  4. To save the assignment as a draft, click the arrow next to “Assign” and select “Save draft.”

Have a question regarding Google Classroom?  We’d be happy to assist you.  Send your questions to support@beehvely.com.

Tips and Tricks: About the Additions to Google Classroom

The developers over at Google are constantly adding new features to Google Classroom. Since our last blog post regarding Google Classroom in January of this year, several exciting and noteworthy features have been added.

This post will explain how to add a secondary teacher or instructional assistant. People added to this secondary role can create assignments and announcements, grade or review student work and even moderate the comment stream. Google Classroom was designed to help teachers spend less time on paperwork, and more time with their students.” With that in mind, read on to learn about this cool new feature!

Adding A Teacher or Instructional Assistant

To invite another teacher or an instructional assistant to join your class, there are a few basic steps to accomplish.

To add a teacher or instructional assistant, In Google Classroom, select one of your already created classrooms. First, click “About.” In the left pane of your screen, you’ll notice a button titled, “Invite Teacher.” Click and choose the person from your contact list. If you can’t find the person you have in mind, you may have to add the individual to your contacts.

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Send the invite and your colleague can join your classroom! To read more about Google’s updates to Google Classroom, follow our blog. We are also available at support@beehively.com to assist with any questions or suggestions.

Beehively Update: Event Sign Up Improvements

We have received many requests for a more user-centric interface for event sign ups. We are happy to report we have made incredible improvements to the feature to simplify signing up for events at your school! Keep reading to find out more.

To access sign ups, log into your school’s Beehively and choose “Sign up for Events” from your My Info menu.

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Here, you will be presented with a user-friendly calendar view, to better plan sign ups relative to your own busy schedule. There are more view options listed to the top right, including: events by week, by month and a running list view.

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You may also view events in a weekly format for a closer look. To sign up for events using this view, you also click the event box.

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To sign up for an event while in monthly or weekly calendar view, click an event box and a popup will appear

The next available view is list view. This will provide a running list of sign up opportunities and more specific information for each event.

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To sign up for an event while in List view, click “Sign up” beside the event title and a popup will appear

Once you click an event to sign up (whether in calendar or list view), you will see this popup including further information about the selected event. Here, you can contact the event coordinator, see others who have signed up and sign up others who may want to volunteer as well (optional).

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Click “Sign up” to complete your sign up for this event. The screen will close automatically once you sign up. If you would like to exit the popup without signing up, simply click outside of the popup or select the x in the upper right-hand corner.

Once you sign up for an event, you will start to see a running list of the events you are signed up for on the top of the page. This list will remain on the sign up page until the events pass.

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From this listing, you are able to download the event to add to your own personal calendar (using the iCal link) or you may withdraw your sign up.

We are confident these changes will make event sign ups at your school easier than ever. As always, feel free to reach out to our team at support@beehively.com with any suggestions, concerns or input regarding this feature improvement. We are available to help 24/7!

Beehively Update: My Info Changes

As we continue to improve the accessibility of Beehively features, a new format for My Info has been implemented. Keep reading to find out more!

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My Info is now shown as a tab, making it more accessible to the user. The main components of the user’s account will be housed here, provided in two sections.

1. Profiles

  • My Profile will take you to your personal info page. From there, you can edit contact information, email, memberships, your password and much more.
  • Your children’s profiles will be listed beneath yours. You are able to access their information and update emergency contact information, medical notes, contact information and more.

2. Actions

  • Sign up for Events leads to the events sign up feature. Here, you are able to access events and sign up as a volunteer.
  • Submit Volunteered Hours allows you to access the volunteered hours entry feature. Here, you will log the hours for events worked.
  • Give Feedback provides a field for you to submit feedback straight to the school, which school administrators can view within Beehively.
  • Find Help will take you to Beehively’s support line, available 24/7 to address any questions or concerns.
  • Logout allows you to sign out of your account.

Viewing your volunteer hours has also been simplified. Access “Submit Volunteered Hours” and you will be able to view all of your current hours per category, along with a grand total of submitted hours.

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Please contact support with any questions or concerns, we are available 24/7 at support@beehively.com!

Beehively Tips: Assigning Report Card Legends Per Classroom

As we progress through the school year, we are continuing to improve Beehively to better your experience come report card time. Our most recent update is the inclusion of classroom-specific legends. This allows you to have separate report card legends for each grade, if you wish. Let’s take a look at this new feature and how it works.

Access Administration, Grades/Reports and choose Settings. Here, you will see a new tab for “Report Legends.” The first item you will see is a field for an overall schoolwide legend.

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Scroll down to see the per class legends. Here, you may edit or delete existing legends and add new class legends.

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Let’s see how to add a new class legend. First, Add a title for your legend. Enter the legend into the provided field. The editor offers tools such as tables, bold font and alignment.

Select which classrooms will be assigned this legend. If the classroom you wish to select is not listed, this means there is already a legend assigned to that class. Review the legends page to check. Remember to save!

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Your legend will now be listed, you may edit or delete the legend at any time.

Please contact our support@beehively.com for assistance with legends, we are always happy to help!

Beehively Tips: How to Add a Photo Slideshow to an Announcement

Do you have photos you want to share on your class or group page? Add photos to a Picasa Web Album, which can be embedded in an Announcement or your Spotlight section.

Visit https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/myphotos. If you are directed to your Google+ account, click the notification to return to Picasa web albums.

To begin, upload your photos to a new album.

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Click the album to get the embed code. Select “Link this Slideshow” then choose “Embed Slideshow.”

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Set the slideshow options. Medium is the recommended size, we also recommend turning autoplay on. Turning captions on will display your unique captions per image as the slideshow plays. Copy the embed code once you complete selecting options.

Step-3

Access Beehively and choose to add a new announcement, spotlight or welcome message. From the text entry screen, select “Insert Video.”

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Paste the code into the provided field and select insert. Review your announcement to be sure the embedded material is there. You can now post your slideshow!

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View your post on your class page to verify everything looks as you would like. Any photos you add to the embedded Picasa album will be added to your slideshow automatically. Contact support@beehively.com with any questions about adding photo slideshows, we are always happy to help!