Noel Erskine, Technology Coordinator Norris Schools

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Meeting Requests Don't Appear in Inbox in Gmail - This fix is for you!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Are you missing some meetings when someone has sent you a meeting request, and you are sure you never received an email on this?

This has happened to several of our staff members, and here is the scenario and and fix:


  • Someone makes a meeting request, but you never received an email.
  • You go into your Google calendar, and sure enough... there is the meeting, but it tells you that you have not responded. (You can respond from your calendar event too.)
  • You search your email and no email was received.  What happened??

You have turned off email reminders for your calendar. 


Go into Calendar and click the little gear icon in the upper right corner to open Settings.

Click on the "Calendars" tab and to the right of the calendar you want to adjust (assuming you have more than one) click on "Notifications". Then check the box in the 'email' column in the row labeled "New Invitations". Don't forget to hit Save.

Now you will see the invite in your inbox anytime someone sends one to you and have the option to accept or deny the invitation from your email rather than having to check your calendar to see if any events have 'magically' appeared.

Miscellaneous Educational Resources 9-24-12

Monday, September 24, 2012

Miscellaneous Educational Resources

I send a lot of tech resources out to my staff, so from here on out, I will be putting these on my blog as well. Enjoy.

Make your own eBooks on your iPad from a web page
Create an epub books directly on the ipad from webpages, etc. and add to your ibooks

Thinking about creating an iBook with your Mac? This is the Monster List of iBook Tutorials  you will want to checkout these tools from Class Widgets, as well as a ton of other resources on this site.

If you are looking for a classroom behavior management solution for a grade K-6 classroom - This may be the answer! 
If you have not looked at ClassDoJo, you may want ot do it.  It has been getting great reviews by elementary teachers across the Internet. It is a classroom behavior managment program that seems to work.
How much does it cost?  ClassDojo will be free for teachers who are part of our beta test group. There are a limited number of places available in this group, so sign up below to be a part of it!
Now You Can Use ClassDojo on Your iPad

100+ Google Tricks for Teachers

A Quick Start Guide for Using YouTube's Editing Tools

New to a MAC?  
This is a great program for learning all the keybaord shortcuts: 
A Cheat Sheet for Mac Keyboard Shortcuts: 

A set of great tools
Free Technology for Teachers: Create Cool Things on Creaza Education   Online Video Editing, cartoon creator, audio, mind mapping and more!

For the Science Teachers: 
Fabulous online chemistry periodic table reference:

A few awesome web 2.0 tools:
Use the Newspaper Clipping Generator to have students write news stories about novels, historic events, and more:

Mentimeter is a Web 2.0 version of clicker response system; perfect for fast polls with no registration required:

Interactive Tools & Sites that JIVE with the iPad - A Listly List

Handy You Tube Tools for Teachers:

Use Alphabetimals ( to create cute animal letters for your elementary classroom.  (Use your screen capture tool, and you can see what I did to create the signature for this blog article.) 

Do you Tweet?
The Best 15 Twitter Hashtags for Teachers

Want some Apps??
100 iPad Apps Perfect For Middle School


And using one of the above tools..... here is my signature for this blog article:

Miscellaneous Educational Resources 9-21-12

Friday, September 21, 2012

Miscellaneous Educational Resources

I send a lot of tech resources out to my staff, so from here on out, I will be putting these on my blog as well. Enjoy.

Create Appointment Slots on a Google Calendar
Wow... want parents, students, or others to signup for appointments on a calendar that you make... you can now do this!  Create Appointment Slots on a Google Calendar

Google Drive (Formally Docs)
An Updated 63 Page Guide to Google Drive and Docs  By Richard Byrne (@rmbyrne)  This is a great resource!  Article here    View Full Screen

Google Drive app for IOS and Android
You can now edit all of your Google Docs with the IOS and Android apps. Find out more here if you like:  Writing on the go: Google Drive for iOS and Android

Google Chrome Extensions
I think the web browser can be the most overlooked tool we have, especially with Chrome.  IF you are not familiar with many of the extentions you can add, and the programs that you add to Chrome, you are missing out.  And once you setup the computer to sync, it's an awesome tool for students and staff.  Here is my Google doc with a great list of some extensions you will want to look at. Chrome Extensions

Here is one example of another great program to add to chrome: 

Video resources
15 great video sites for educators:…

Free Technology for Teachers: 5 Alternatives to Aviary for Creating Audio Online
Last month Aviary announced that they will be shuttering their online audio and image editing tools on September 15.  They had some awesome apps including image editing too. 

Free Google Course builder - But only for advanced/techy users. 
Check out the free Google Course Builder (some HTML knowledge required):…

iPad and IOS resources: 

Free IOS (iPad/iPhone) apps for a limited time.
Free iOS apps today: MyBrushes Pro (normally $4.99); Learn Numbers for Kids 

Who needs clickers when you have iPads in a classroom?
This may be more applicable with 1-to-1 iPad schools, because I am not sure you want to check out iPads to just use them as clickers.... borrow someone's clickers instead....but here are a few cool apps: 
eClicker and Socrative --  great article here. 
InfuseLearning is a breakthrough virtual learner response solution. 

iTunesU  - Have you loaded the app??  Have you looked at the free classes??  - Now might be the time. 
Creative Writing: A Master Class by Academy of Achievement  Looks like a great #iTunesU course for selected teachers and students…

Network Tech article - DNS and scavenging

Thursday, September 20, 2012

If you run your own DNS servers, which most Microsoft network admins do, you will want to have a good understanding of setting up scavenging of stale records. After a short time, especially with DHCP and computer imaging/cloning, you will notice a lot of duplicate DNS entries and stale records showing on your windows DNS servers.

The following are the articles / examples that will help your learn more about how scavenging can be set:
1. Understanding aging and scavenging:

A few handy DNS tests:

You can do an nslookup of your local domain, and only your DNS servers should be listed. for example, if your local windows domain is mynetwork.local  then you would do a nslookup mynetwork.local and should receive back the ip addresses of only your domain controllers.  (If you get more, then you have some issues!) 

Verify that that this destination domain controller is using a valid DNS server for DNS services, by running the DNS Enhanced version of DCDIAG.EXE command on the console of the destination domain controller, as follows: 

dcdiag /test:dns 

Remember, to flush dns on the local machine, the comand is: ipconfig /flushdns
Good steps to do this include these commands:
net stop dns
net stop logon
ipconfig /flushdns
net start dns
net start logon

To Sync your Domain controllers: Repadmin /syncall  More info on this Technet article

That's it for now. :)

Wanna mirror your Android device to your Apple TV... this app accomplishes part of the task.

Monday, September 10, 2012

iMedia share is a nice little app for your Android phone or tablet that lets you use the Apple AirPlay to stream content from your Android device to your Apple TV.  (The also have an IOS version but I have not tested it yet.) We have deployed Apple TV's in a big way within our school district for one major reason.  The ability to mirror the iPad (Or other IOS devices) to the Apple TV's hooked up to ceiling mounted projectors.  This solution turns the iPad into a valuable device for educators. Now with the iMedia share on the Android devices, you can do some similar things.  I am rating this as a 4 star app, for the simple reason it does not totally mirror the device, but does mirror many streaming contents. This function is similar to using Airplay to stream a YouTube video from the iPad.

In my tests this app works great for streaming a lot of different video sources right to your Apple TV.  The app may be worth downloading even if you do not have an Apple TV, for the simple fact that it arranges a lot of great video sources into one nice app interface.  They have a lite version (Which is what I tested) and a paid version for $4.99 that adds even more features. (The lite version has ads.)

This app is definitely worth downloading if you have an Android device! (I would guess that is true for their IOS app as well.)  I would give a full 5 out of 5 stars if it did true mirroring of the entire device, which would be invaluable for the Android devices.   Thanks to my friend Joe Gehr (@joegehr ) for turning me onto this app.  The man is a phone and gadget freak and wealth of information!

There are some similar apps, AppleTV AirPlay Media Player, but it does require you to create an online account. It streams media similar to the iMedia share app, but does not offer true "mirroring" of the entire device.

Some amazing free eBooks for a limited time!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Download the AMERICA The Story of Us e-Books for FREE! Limited TIME! (Ends Sept. 11 2012)

AMERICA The Story of Us Enhanced e-Book Series
Covering 400 years of our shared history, AMERICA The Story of Us is the riveting story of how America was invented, focusing on the people, ideas, themes, and events that have shaped our nation. Our new, quick-read e-books, based on the award-winning miniseries, are perfect for students, teachers, and life-long learners. Each e-book integrates text, short video clips, production stills, historical illustrations, charts, and other full-color graphics.

This is a great offer on some free books. The nice thing, besides the price is that it will allow you to download them in any either the iBook, Nook or Kindle formats!  If you are like me, I did both the iBook and Kindle format so I could compare the two ebook types. (I do not even own a Kindle, but can still get books and read them using the Cloud reader or the Kindle app on my iPad.) 

Here are the direct links to the books below.

iPad Versions: 

Kindle versions:

Book 1:

Book 3:


A few notes on ebook versions.  With the Nook version you actually need a Nook tablet to download the book and use.  With the Kindle version, you can download it to use on the web or on any iPad or android device using their apps.  The iBooks format is limited to an IOS device (iPad, iPhone, Touch, etc...). 

If you are managing a school iTunes account or school kindle account, I would grab these books so they could be used later if desired. (Similar to grabbing an app while its free.) 

Here is a link to the offer directly on the History Channel Education site:  Free eBook offer