NASA Notifications


Sunday Sit, Sip, and “Sync” ~ 11-11-2012

I remember “Sputnik”.

The lives of many in my generation were changed with its launch.

Draft deferments were issued if your college major was in the areas of engineering, math, or science.

It added a new dimension to the “Cold War” and kicked the “Space Race” into high gear.

Although Sputnik’s orbit lasted only 3 short months, its legacy resulted in the technology push that serves today’s world.

During those months Sputnik orbited Earth, people stood outside searching the sky for glimpses of it. Today we have the International Space Station that orbits above us, and once again, it can be seen from the backyards and country roads of our lives.

This November, NASA released a new service that allows us to be notified when the Space Station will be overhead. You can sign up to receive an email providing the time and location for viewing as it orbits above your location.

Now you can share this experience with your students to add a ‘real” dimension to your science and history lessons.

After you read about their new service and sign up for the notifications here,
you might as well stay awhile and check out what has to offer in terms of videos, lessons plans, and resources for teachers and students.

Finally, we invite you to move outside this Sunday to enjoy the sun on this fall day, and make it a good one.

Have a great week!

Is Anyone Listening? (Part 4 of 4)

classroom management email tips writing

Monday Morning Message ~ 2-28-2011

Your Distribution List is made, and you are ready to send out your first note.

Remember, you promised your parents that you would keep their email addresses confidential!

It’s easy and the secret is…

Bcc (or “Blind Carbon Copy”).

The benefits of sending emails to recipients using the Bcc Option is that it

   1. keeps addresses confidential;

   2. protects recipients from receiving spam; and

   3. protects recipients from receiving a reply when
someone accidentally selects “Reply All”.

When writing your note, address it to yourself using your school address.
Next, choose the Bcc Option, and use the Distribution List contact name as the recipient.

Another benefit of using this option is that you will also receive a copy of your note, in addition to the one that is in your “Sent Folder”.

One more reminder:

You might want to use the day/date as your Subject.
This also helps parents keep track of notes/reminders.
If your note contains important information or deadline reminders, you might want to use that as your subject to get their attention.

You are now on the road to being heard, and more important, they are listening!

Have a great week!

Is Anyone Listening? (Part 3 of 4)

classroom management email tips

Monday Morning Message ~ 2-21-2011

Great! Every one of your parents responded to your email address request!

Now how in the world are you going to email every single one of those people every single day?

The answer is easy.

It’s called a “Distribution List”.

I have included step-by-step images and instructions to help you create this time-saver.

Finally, be sure to check back next Monday to see how to keep your parent emails confidential!

If this Monday you are observing Presidents’ Day with a day off from school, enjoy your day,
and be sure to do something for yourself…

Step 1

Step 2

Step 3

Step 4

Step 5

Is Anyone Listening? (Part 2 of 4)

classroom management email tips

Monday Morning Message ~ 2-7-2011

You read the word, “Email” last week, and now you will begin to see how a daily email note to your parents will solve a lot of “communication” problems.
Let’s start with the necessary steps to begin the implementation of your new system.

The first day of student attendance is quickly approaching.
Your weekends and days are filled with organizing your room, finalizing first lesson plans, and memorizing your student names on your new class list.
As youParent Signature Needed! fill your students’ “First Day Folders”, make sure you include the “Parent Email Note”.

Your “Parent Email Note” is the first step.

Send home this note on the first day, and then present it to your parents at the first Parent Orientation Night or Open House.
This note must be your first priority at starting your new year.
Getting every parent “onboard” is essential.
Remind them they can use any email address.
They may also use as many as they want.

Notice in your note that you make three promises.

Promise #1: Keep their email address confidential.

Promise #2: Write daily.

Promise #3: Don’t, and again, NEVER spam your parents’ in-boxes.

Remember many of your parents are professionals, as we are.
They use their emails to conduct business.
Also, an increasing number of parents receive their email on their cell phones.
Keep it short, and keep it simple.

Below we have provided a link to a template of the “Parent Email Note”.
Please feel free to adapt and use this to get started on the road to the best school year yet.

Finally, join us next week to learn how to keep the three promises.


Is Anyone Listening? (Part 1 of 4)

classroom management email tips

Monday Morning Message ~ 1-31-2011

You work hard writing, editing, and finally publishing your class newsletter. It’s filled with important topics like field trips, your week in review, and students’ upcoming tests.

Picture AND fundraiser money are due, and the permission slips for next week’s field trip.

Top that off with finding just the right piece of clip art and seasonal font, to make YOUR newsletter something you are sure will be kept in a memory box forever.

The reality is that today’s parents are different than yours were.
And all of your hard work is failing.

Parents are busy just like you.

Do you want to get through to parents?
Do you want to save trees?

Do you want to regain some of your busy life?

Everyone is busy every day all of the time.
That includes your students and their families.
Most of the time, student book bags are cleaned out, and after your notes and newsletters are skimmed through quickly, they go straight into the trash after mom or dad asks, “Hey, do we need this paper anymore, or can I throw it away?”

You have to get with the times if you want to get through to your students’ parents.

Face it.
The days of the mimeograph and ditto machines are over.
Telephone calls take up too much time, and callbacks waste even more of your precious time.

The solution to all of this is email.

We can’t wait until next Monday when we will continue with our four-part series to help you set up a quick system to get you on the road to productive, easy communication with your students and their parents.

In the meantime, enjoy your Monday, your week, and your students!

The Key to One of My Biggest Problems


The Key to Student Email Troubles

As a 4th grade teacher I stumble across one problem again and again throughout the course of the school year.
How can I allow my students to use some of the web 2.0 tools that require a registration with a valid email address?
There is the gmail trick where you can add the + sign and set up the filters.
(A little tedious in my honest opinion.)
Today I discovered another way to involve my students without the hassle of them not having individual email accounts.
You see, I have my own domain name purchased through Go Daddy (very cheap by the way).
It is and is the address of my classroom website.
Looks can be deceiving.
I don’t pay any hosting costs since the site is actually stored on our school district’s server.
I just point that address to my school district issued webspace.  It has a really funky address that is hard for my fourth graders and their parents to remember.  It is something like*morewordsandsymblostofollow.htm.
Anyway…my point is coming, bear with me.
Once you purchase a domain name from Go Daddy, you are given a free email address with a web mail server on which to check it.
When you are setting this free email address up, you can check a box that makes it a “catch-all” inbox.
What does that mean??
It means that I can give each of my students their own email address this year…sort of.
Let’s say that Sally is in my class.  I can tell her that her email address is [email protected]and if someone sends her an email, it will go to MY inbox!
So…with that being said…do you know what that means?
They can each register for different web 2.0 applications (under my guidance and discretion of course) with their real/fake email address! Woohoo!
I will keep you posted on this actual application.  Right now I just have it in my head that it will ACTUALLY work.  But honestly…I think it will!