Monday, December 4, 2023

Magic School AI


Magic School AI

Your personal AI assistant for all things teaching.

Created by Scott Aten, December 4, 2023
It seems like AI has become one of the fastest growing technologies in recent memory.  While we block AI content for students, as staff members you do have access to AI tools.  MagicSchool is an AI platform designed to assist classroom teachers develop content to use with students.  MagicSchool has over 50 tools that are designed to help teachers perform different tasks.  For example: lesson planning, differentiation, communication with parents, rubric design, and many more.

Give MagicSchool a try by visiting The best way to experience it is to just experiment with it.  By providing your content area, grade level you teach, and some specific topic information, the AI generator will provide you some suggestions.  For example I ran the "Real Wold Connections Tool" to help me get some examples for a 6th grade math lesson.  I provided this information to the tool...

So by simply providing the tool with my grade level and in this case a specific content suggestion from 6th grade math, I was provided these suggestions...

You can then easily click the copy button and paste the content into a Google Doc to be used or edited.

Next I tried the "Song Generator" with some grade 2 Social Studies content on maps and Cardinal Directions.  I provided the topic, a few key details I wanted in the song and then an artist and song title...

And here are the results...

There are a lot of tools to use including:
  • Social Emotional Learning lesson planning
  • Multiple Choice Assessment Generator
  • Report Card Comment Generator
  • Lesson Plan Generator
  • YouTube Video Question Generator
  • Student Work Feedback Tool
  • Informational Text Generator
  • Math Story Problem Generator
  • Text Leveler Tool
  • Text Translator
  • Depth of Knowledge (DOK) Questions Generator
  • Sentense Starter Generator
  • Choice Board Generator based on UDL
  • Social Stories Generator
  • Vocabluary List - Topic Based 
  • Coach's Sports Practice Generator
And these are just a few examples and they are constantly adding more.  Right now this is all free to use.  With anything AI, it is always good to fact check and make personal changes to the content.  AI is very smart but it is not 100% foolproof.  Nothing can take the place of a good teacher.

I will leave you with this...Why did the teacher want Christmas break to come?
Because she was tired of all the "elf"-abetizing!

Yes, this was generated by the Teacher Joke Generator set to 7th grade level.  So if you are looking for some time savers, this tool may be a nice addition to your lesson desgin process.

If you would like me to come and help you please feel free to schedule me to come and assist you.  I am always ready to come help.  

For more helpful information and the archive of previous posts, look for items in the menu to the left.


Green Local Schools

Tech Integration Team

Wednesday, September 20, 2023

Canvas Mastery Paths


Canvas Mastery Paths

Differentiation tool in Canvas

Created by Scott Aten, September 20, 2023
One of my goals for this school year is to try and introduce additional tools available to us in the Canvas LMS.  The first tool I wanted to show you is Mastery Paths.  Canvas Mastery Paths allow you to differentiate learning paths for students based on their performance on quizzes or assignments. These paths help you create a personalized learning experience by directing students through different content based on their needs.

I have created step-by-step directions for you to follow as well as a video of me setting these up in my Canvas course.

Setting Up Canvas Mastery Paths:

  1. Access Your Canvas Course:
    Get into Canvas and navigate to the course where you want to set up Mastery Paths.

  2. Enable Mastery Paths:
    Mastery Paths need to be enabled for your course. To do this, go to "Settings" in the course menu and scroll down until you see “Mastery Paths”.  Click the box to “Enable individual learning baths for students based on assessment”.

  3. Create Content:
    To use Mastery Paths effectively, you need to have content (pages, assignments, quizzes, etc.) ready in your course. Create the content you will use based on the different learning paths you want to assign to your students.  For example, when you give a Canvas Quiz, students' mastery path assignments will vary depending on their performance on the quiz. If they do not demonstrate an understanding of the content, you will want some content prepared  to reteach and reinforce the material. Alternatively, if they do show some level of understanding, you will give them enrichment activities to work on. The content created for these assignments can encompass anything that you can add to Canvas including pages, assignments, links to videos, links to google slides, and canvas quizzes. 

  4. Design Mastery Path Assignment/Quiz:
    You can use either a Canvas Assignment or a Canvas Quiz to determine which path a student will follow.  Since you turned on “Mastery Paths” in step two, when you go into a quiz or assignment you should see a “Mastery Path” tab now available.

Click on this tab to set up the “Mastery Paths”.  You can set up to 3 different paths that will be taken based on the student’s score on the assignment/quiz.

You may elect to use only two paths if you wish.  If so, simply have the bottom two paths both set to 0 points and do not add activities in the bottom path.

  1. Add Your Content:
    Once you've created the paths, customize the content within each path according to the students' needs.  With the points set that will determine which path of work students will be assigned, you may now add the content by clicking on the “+” button in the path you want to add the content.  You can add additional assignments, readings, videos, or other resources.

    Repeat this for each path you will be using. Again if you only want two paths, you may just set content in two paths.  It is NOT possible to have more than three Mastery Paths.

  2. Assign Quiz/Assignment:
    With the Mastery Paths set, the last key is to change who gets the assignment from “Everyone” to “Mastery Paths”.  By changing the “Assign to” from “Everyone” to “Mastery Paths”, Canvas will automatically set up your gradebook for you.  This means that students will only be given the assignments in their “path” and excluded from the others.

  3. Students Perform on the Assignment/Quiz
    As soon as the Assignment/Quiz is graded the students will be placed into the path that corresponds to points they received.  The activities you placed in the path will then be assigned to them and show up for them in their “To Do” list.  In the case of an auto graded Quiz, this happens automatically.  If you used Mastery Paths in an assignment, once you put a grade on the assignment in your gradebook the path will be determined based on that score.

Ideas For Using Canvas Mastery Paths:

  1. Differentiate Student Work Based on a Quiz Grade
    As described above you can use Mastery Paths to reteach or enrich based on how a student performs on an assessment.  This makes Mastery Paths an excellent tool for Differentiation.

  2. Assigning a Test A or B
    If you would like to give half of the class a Test A and the other Test B.  You can do this by creating a simple one question quiz that does not count toward a student’s overall grade.  Create a multiple choice question worth 1 point.  Have half the students choose A worth 1 point and the other half choose B worth 0 points.  Setup the Mastery Path to assign Test A to one path and Test B to the other path.

  3. Give Students Choices on a Project:
    Doing a project where students can pick between 2-3 different options.  Setup a Mastery Path Quiz that allows them to pick and then use the paths to assign the work based on what they selected in the quiz.

Canvas Mastery Paths can significantly enhance the personalized learning experience for your students, allowing them to progress at their own pace and focus on the content that's most relevant to their needs. Make sure to provide clear instructions and support to help students navigate the paths effectively.

If you would like me to come and help you please feel free to schedule me to come and assist you.  I am always ready to come help.  

For more helpful information and the archive of previous posts, look for items in the menu to the left.


Green Local Schools

Tech Integration Team

Tuesday, August 29, 2023

UPDATED - Classroom by Lightspeed


Classroom by Lightspeed

Monitor student Chromebooks while students are in your classroom

Created by Scott Aten, August 29, 2023
You will see an older post in this Blog where I introduced Lightspeed Classroom.  The website has been updated since that post, so I wanted to update my Blog with this new information.

One of the biggest issues staff have faced since going 1-1, is keeping students on task when in the classroom.  The lure of games, internet searches, and videos is too much for some of our students.  As a classroom teacher it is challenging to keep these tech savvy students focused on the learning at hand while still making use of the great tool the Chromebooks have become.  We now have a tool available to you that should help tip the advantage back into your favor.  Lightspeed Classroom is a tool to monitor your students while using their Chromebooks in your classroom during your class period.

Getting started using Lightspeed Classroom
You will want to bookmark this site:
Login with Google to access your account and classes.  Your classes have been added for you already.  If you have any students that are missing or misplaced, please put in a help desk ticket to have this resolved for you.

Helpful Instructions
I have broken down all the parts of this application to make it easy for you to get this up and running in your classroom.

Recommendations for staff who have been using it
Make sure you unlock the class before they leave your room. You don’t want them to be blocked from cites they may need to access in their next period’s class. (GIS, GPS, GWD)
If something is not working the way you want, don't panic. Just set web rules to none and have students refresh.

Allow Lists
As you will see, you restrict students to an "allowed" list of sites.  The teachers that helped pilot this application have started a list of URLs to include in allow lists based on content area as well as by building.  You can access this list here and add URLs that are helpful for everyone.  Please only add URLs to your building and sites that are beneficial to everyone.  Also remember this is a document for the whole district and any changes you make are visible to everyone - not just you.

If you would like me to come and assist you during a TBT or department meeting or even one on one please feel free to schedule me to come and assist you.  I am always ready to come help.  

For more helpful information and the archive of previous posts, look for items in the menu to the left.

Thursday, August 17, 2023

Adjusting Due Dates on Imported Canvas Assignments


Adjusting Due Dates on Imported Canvas Assginments

Get due dates in the correct calendar school year

Created by Scott Aten, August 17, 2023
Beginning of the school year means it's time to import content from previous Canvas Courses.  One of the great features of Canvas is the ease in which you can bring in content from past courses into your new course.  One key step that teacher often skip is shifting the dates of assignments into the new school year.  This is best practice when importing assignments into your new Canvas course.  Here are the steps...  

Importing Content
  1. Open your Canvas course for the new school year.
  2. In the right menu click "Import Existing Content"
  3. This will open the Import Content window.  In the Content Type dropdown select "Copy a Canvas Course".
  4. In the "Search for a course" dropdown, select the course that has the content you want to use (last year's course or your sandbox for example).
  5. In the "Content" area choose "Select specific content"
  6. In the Options area check "Adjust events and due dates"
    This will open up date options for you that will help shift your assignment due dates into the current school year and approximate correct day.

    In the Beginning Date field [1], enter the starting date of the course you are importing (last year the start date would be 8/17/2022) . You can also click the Calendar icon to select a date. In the Change to field [2], enter the new date when you want the course to begin, or click the Calendar icon (this year the date would be 8/22/23).

    In the Ending Date field [3], enter the end date of the course you are importing, or click the Calendar icon to select a date (last year end date for a full year course would be 5/26/23). In the Change to field [4], enter the new date when you want the course to end (5/30/24).

    Canvas will take the new start and end dates for the course and distribute all assignments with due dates as evenly as possible across the course dates and keep them due on the same day of the week as the original course. If the imported course and the new course vary in course length, assignments will be assigned proportionally. BUT this gets the assignments into the correct school year and you can then edit the assignments if the day is not correct.

  7. Click "Import"
  8. A new Job will be started in your course.  Click the "Select Content" button at the end of that Course Copy job.
  9. This opens up the "Select Content" window.  You can expand each section by clicking on the arrow in front of each category.  Put a check in each item you want to bring into your course.  By clicking a module, you will bring in all the pieces of that module including assignment, quizzes, pages, etc that are in the module.  This is why building your content in modules is recommended.
  10. Once you have selected all the pieces you want to bring into your new courses, click the "Select Content" button.
And that is it!  Your content will be brought into your new course and the dates will be adjusted.

If you would like me to come and help you please feel free to schedule me to come and assist you.  I am always ready to come help.  

For more helpful information and the archive of previous posts, look for items in the menu to the left.


Green Local Schools

Tech Integration Team

Wednesday, January 4, 2023

Tech Integration Website Resources


Tech Integration Resources

Listed by Content Area

Created by Scott Aten, January 4, 2023
Many of you know Google Guru Eric Curts.  Recently he sent a list of integration resources organized by subject area.  I have taken a look at his list and have added them below.  


  • TinyWow AI Text Tools - Resource Link - Totally free AI-powered writing tool. No sign-up needed, and no limit on quantity created. Enter your text and have the AI generate an improved version. Specific tools include essay writer, content improver, paragraph completer, name generator, and much more. (Wanted to make you all aware of the existance of this tool)

  • SwiftRead - Resource Link - This Chrome extension is designed to help anyone read faster than their current speed. Additionally it may help the reader stay focused and on the reading task.

  • DeepL - Resource link - Free Chrome extension that translates any text you are reading, translates any text you are writing, and is over 3 times more accurate than other translation tools.

  • GZM Classroom - Resource Link - Free serialized audio dramas and other shows, aimed at middle grade students, with teacher resources including listening guides, explore board, and choice boards


  • Edia - Resource Link - Math practice website. The free version includes: Create practice & quizzes, Instant feedback, Auto-grading, Anti-cheating features, Video explanations.

  • Pine Tools - Resource Link - Great collection of useful free online tools for images, texts, lists, numbers, dates and times, colors, files, math, randomness, videos, and more.

  • PhET Mean Simulation - Resource Link - Explore the concept of mathematical mean with this interactive tool. Set water levels in cups, predict the mean water level, reveal the answer, add or remove cups, change water levels, repeat.

  • Arithmetic Game - Resource Link - Free math facts speed drill with options for addition, subtraction, division, multiplication, number range for problems, and duration from 30 to 600 seconds.


  • Felt - Resource Link - Free online tool for creating and sharing maps with loads of useful features including pins, routes, markers, clipping, data layers, polygons, text, notes, links, images, videos, sharing, and more. Lots of great ways for students to use this to create maps and show their understanding of content.

  • Metroverse - Resource Link - Interactive site from Harvard to visualize economic data and learn about cities.

  • Teaching with the News - Resource Link - Free lessons from Brown University to connect your classroom to headlines in the news.

  • Geoquiz History Edition - Resource Link - Online game where you place a marker on the map to guess the location provided. In "War Battle" mode, find locations of battles throughout history. In "Heritage" mode, find historically significant places.

  • MapChart - Resource Link - Free online tool to make a map of the World, Europe, United States, and more, color code countries or states on the map, fill in the legend and download as an image file.

  • New Google Sheets Timeline Creator - Resource Link - Students can now create and share interactive timelines right in Google Sheets that include titles, descriptions, dates, links, colors, groups and more.

  • GZM Classroom - Resource Link - Free serialized audio dramas and other shows, aimed at middle grade students, with teacher resources including listening guides, explore board, and choice boards


  • Game Making Tool - Resource Link - This Google Doodle honors Jerry Lawson, one of the first black engineers to work in the video game industry. The Doodle lets you: Learn about Jerry, Play 5 different games, Create and share your own video games.

  • Bee-Bot Online - Resource Link - Help young students explore & learn basic coding skills by programming a virtual Bee-Bot on several mats including Alphabet, Community, CVC Words, Dice, School, US Coins, Shapes, Colors, and Size, and more.


  • Beep - Resource Link - Free Chrome extension for teachers and students to record and leave voice notes in Google Docs, Slides, Forms, Sheets, Classroom, and Gmail. Unlimited number of recordings for up to 3 minutes long each.

  • ClipChamp - Resource Link - Free online video editor that includes: Unlimited watermark-free exports, Up to 1080p(HD) export resolution, Free audio, image, & video stock, Free filters & effects, Import media from Google Drive, Google Photos, local drive, and more, Record media with camera and/or screen recording, Works on Chromebooks, Windows, and Mac.

  • Yippity - Resource Link - Yippity is a free online tool that uses AI to help you study. Enter the text or web link for your study material. The AI will create a list of questions and answers from the text. You can now quiz yourself to see how well you know the content.

  • Google Chrome video series - Resource Link - New collection of 12 short tutorial videos on tips and tricks to get the most out of your use of the Google Chrome web browser.

  • Image Candy - Resource Link - Free online image editing tools including Background remover, Meme generator, Crop image, Rotate image, Add text, Video to GIF, and more!

  • PDF Candy - Resource Link - Free online PDF editing tools including editing, merging, Word to PDF, Split PDF, and more!

If you would like me to come and help you please feel free to schedule me to come and assist you.  I am always ready to come help.  

For more helpful information and the archive of previous posts, look for items in the menu to the left.


Green Local Schools

Tech Integration Team