ISTE20 Live: Poster Session

Presenting at the ISTE Conference is always an honor, and this year was no different. Well, a little different because it was virtual and we weren’t across the street from Disney Land (I really wanted to visit Galaxy’s Edge and make my own lightsaber), but it was also empowering and energizing to meet people all over the world by video conferencing for an hour. Thank you to everyone who attended and participated.

Below I’ve added links to all of the resources shared in the “Restore: 7 Steps to Finding Balance with Tech In Your Life” poster session, which are also online and available at the ISTE Poster Session Landing page until June 2021. (You will need to be logged in to the ISTE Conference website to access.)

Restore PowerPoint Slides
This is the presentation shared during poster session with speaker notes. You are welcome to use this presentation in anyway that supports your own instruction.

Restore Discussion Questions
In this Google slide deck you’ll find cards you can share either virtually or in-person. Note that some may be better aligned for different age groups and suggestions for their usage are included in the speaker notes.

Restore Suggested Reading and Listening
A Google Doc with short book and podcast reviews as well as links to many of the resources I’ve used in creating this presentation and activity.

Restore Google Form
This easy to use form allows you to reflect on how you use technology and record your own ideas on how to find balance. To use, create a copy of the form into your own Google account. From there you can share it with your community and make adjustments as necessary.

Restore One Page PDF
If you prefer a traditional tech-free paper and pencil activity to spark reflection!
(Click the download button below)

Harmonize Discussions & STEM at Chaffey College

This afternoon I had the pleasure of meeting a group of teachers from Chaffey College to share the capabilities of Harmonize Discussions and annotation tools. With rich media posts, interactive topics, and the power of both image and video annotation online discussions can take on a completely new role in your courses. The engaging power of media combined with the annotations provides students with an active learning tool.

Thank you Professor Shannon Jessen of Chaffey for hosting the webinar!
Click on this ZOOM LINK to see the entire presentation.

And embedded below is a short tutorial video on how to use the Image and Video Annotation Tools in a Harmonize Discussion. For more info check out the Harmonize Support Guides.

Career Change!

With this post I’m excited to share some job front news. This month I have joined 42 Lines as their “Harmonize Success Coach.” This is an interesting title for an interesting position. Part trainer, part customer success coach, and part customer support, it’s a new opportunity with a new product that I’ve enjoyed using over the last few months – the Harmonize Discussion LTI.

Check out the short product overview video below to see how Harmonize can be used with a Learning Management System. By leveraging what works best with social media platforms; easy uploading of multi media files, and tagging, Harmonize helps instructors and students connect with each other and the content. Fewer clicks, more connections. Increased engagement leads to decreased drop out and failure rates. Fight that feeling of isolation in an online course with a robust discussion platform to build community and increase social presence.

Although change is never easy, I’m excited to step into this new role and learn how educational software is designed, launched, and revised over time. It will also be interesting to learn more about the relationship between the educational technology industry and higher education clients.

Get ready to see more posts about using discussions in online courses, engaging students, and Harmonize – the LTI to “take discussions further!”

UPDATE – “Mobilize Learning with the Canvas Mobile App” Now A Screencast

Couldn’t have timed it better?  I hate to say it, but it’s true.  In the days before the UCET 2020, where this presentation was shared, there was a lot of debate as to whether or not the conference would go on.  Thankfully it did, but unfortunately the COVID-19 virus continued to spread and our state closed all schools for what has now become the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year.

As a result, more students than ever are accessing Canvas courses and content from their phones and tablets.  Therefore, to support teachers making the shift to remote learning, the “Mobilize Learning with Canvas Mobile Apps” presentation has been produced as a screencast.  In this video you’ll learn:

  • How to modify and adjust Canvas pages to look best on a small screen
  • Create discussions that leverage multimedia
  • Set up assignments that utilize the devices phone to capture student work
  • Build quizzes (Classic and New) that will function best in the Canvas apps
  • Use modules to organize and chunk activities for simpler navigation

So breath, watch, reflect, and contact us at if you need further support or training on using the Canvas Student, Teacher, and Parent Apps.


UCET PRESENTATION, March 10th, 10:15 AM
Ballroom C

As of last week 107,646 students at seventeen Utah High Ed Institutions, and 72,279 K-12 students across the 100 LEA’s in the state of Utah are accessing their online learning materials through the Canvas Mobile App.

But how many educators are designing their course content in Canvas to work well in the mobile environment?  My guess is a very low percentage.  This is based simply on the fact that many of the teachers I work with didn’t know that there was a Canvas Application available to their learners.

In this presentation you’ll see six tips for making your Canvas Content more “Mobile Friendly” along with some tips and tricks for meeting your learners on their phones and tablets.

The slideshow above can also be accessed through this Google Drive Folder along with all of the images and videos included.  Please make a copy of this content and use it as you need to in your schools and learning communities.  You can also request this training for your school via our UEN website –


Canvas + Google Docs = Cloud Assignment Success

Google Docs has long been an amazing tool for collecting student writing, fostering collaboration, and teaching authentic efficiency through cloud computing.  During the COVID-19 “Soft School Closures” here in Utah this tool has taken on a new role.  Google Docs is the new paper for teachers and students separated by a fear of Coronavirus germs.

With students and parents struggling to make sense of remote learning classroom solutions the last thing educators want to do is put content and assignments in yet another place online.  For educators using Canvas, it’s easy to add your Google Docs assignments right into your course, collect work from students in one place, and provide feedback (grades).

In this short video screencast I’ll walk you through the process for creating a “Google Docs Cloud Assignment” in Canvas.

Need more help?  The Canvas Guides provide step-by-step instructions with up to date screen-captures and examples.  Click here for more!

UEN PDTV: Computer Science & AR/VR Tools

Teaching the UEN Course “Mixed Reality In Education” has helped expose many Utah teachers to the benefits of using AR and VR tools in the classroom.  One participant, Alison Ence, took the course content to a completely new level.  Rather than simply provide Augmented and Virtual Reality resources for her students, she has taught her students how to create their own mixed reality content.  Using a variety of tools like CoSpaces, Merge Cubes, Classroom VR, Oculus, and much more, Ms. Ence has provided authentic experiences in computer science to entire class at Green Canyon High School.

Check it out and see what students can create in this short 12 minute UEN PDTV video.  And to register for this course keep your eye on  New courses for the summer semesters will be posted on April 1st, 2020.

Fight Fake News!

“Fake News” has become more than a catchphrase for politicians to use in an attempt to discredit media that is unfavorable to their image or campaign.  Today “Fake News” threatens our democracy, compromises our access to content, and most importantly, “Fake News” maliciously manipulates how our students interpret themselves and the world around them.  Misinformation, propaganda, and click bait is being weaponized to influence the way we vote, spend money, and accept members of our community who are different from ourselves.

In the book Fact vs. Fiction: Teaching Critical Thinking Skills in the Age of Fake News, Jennifer Lagarde and Darren Hudgins lay out an effective curriculum for teaching the critical thinking and media literacy skills that our students desperately need today.  How do we teach students to recognize valid resources from fake news?  Differentiate facts from opinions? Identify biased reporting?

Using information from this book, along with some tools available to Utah Educators from Utah’s Online Library, the following poster was displayed at both the UELMA and UCET Conferences in March, 2020.


All of the information on this poster board can be accessed and printed form the following Google Slide Show – “Fight Fake News with Utah’s Online Library” which is also embedded below.  Please take this information and share it with everyone in your classrooms, libraries, and schools.


UEN PDTV: Computer Science In Juab School District

Educators and students may shy away in fright at the prospect of teaching or taking computer science classes.  Coding can be scary!  Especially when you see those super smart heroes hammering away on keyboards with super fast typing skills trying to save the world through a computer screen.  How is an educator expected to become an expert in computer science so quickly?  Well you don’t have to be an expert, you just have to be willing to take a few risks.

The brave teachers in the Juab School District’s Innovation Center have found some amazing ways to incorporate coding and computer science into multiple grade levels.  In this video you’ll meet Heather Westering, and Krystle Bassett to find out how they’ve integrated coding, design thinking, and computer science skills into the curriculum.

Sevier School District PD Day – 2020!

There is no better way to start a new year than going to Richfield, Utah and working with excellent educators from the Sevier School District.  These people know how to return to school after a nice winter break… with a day of Professional Development!


Thank you Brandon Harrison of CUES for inviting us down to share with you.  Today I had the pleasure of leading three breakout sessions.  All of the content from each one is available in the links below.  And if you have questions that aren’t answered there, please email me at    Happy New Year!

Nearpod 101: An Introduction to Nearpod
In this hands-on session we will cover the basics of using Nearpod. What is it? How does it transform learning? What kind of content is included? After a short demo of a simple lesson demonstrating the differences between running a “Live Lesson” in Nearpod and running a “Student Paced” version, teachers will also practice signing into the website, looking through the Nearpod Lesson Library, and adding lessons to use with your students.

If you missed this session, check out the self-paced lesson linked here.
The code for this lesson is TFRCG

And if you want to learn more about Nearpod, be sure to sign up for the UEN “MOOC” here at

Neaten Your Nearpod Lessons with Google Slides
In 2019 Nearpod introduced a new way to build your own lessons with Google Slides. In this session you will learn how to turn on the Nearpod Add-On in your Google Slides and turn on some cool new ways to create engaging learning activities that look great.

This lesson is available not in Nearpod, but in Google Slides linked here.

Video Editing Made Easy with Adobe Rush
Adobe Rush makes it easy to go straight from shooting video to publishing on the web. This easy to use app works across multiple platforms. Powerful tools like graphic overlays and editing resources are simple to access. Publishing is also a snap with direct uploads to YouTube, Facebook, and more.  In this session we will go over the basics of getting started with Adobe Rush so you can easily use it with your students.

View the PowerPoint from this session here.

Or, just watch this amazing episode of UEN PDTV where Jami Gardner and I talk about how easy it is to use Adobe Rush…