News

Registration Is Open for the Technology and Distance Learning Symposium 2015

The TDL Symposium is scheduled for March 13–14, 2015 at San Leandro Adult School. Registration is open now through March 3, 2015, or until we have reached our capacity of 200. Don't wait and be disappointed. Once we reach our capacity, registration will close. Registration is only $25 and you must be pre-registered. There will be no "on-site" registration.

Adult Education Programs Need More Money to Help Neediest Californians

This opinion piece recently appeared on the Sacramento Bee "soapbox" Web site, authored by Alice Quan Yoshioka of Hacienda la Puente in Southern California. If you would like to join the conversation on adult education, there is a comment section below the article. Read the article...External link opens in new window or tab

The National College Transition Network Has Archived Webinar Videos

The National College Transition Network External link opens in new window or tab has recorded a number of past webinars External link opens in new window or tab and made them available. These may be of interest to teachers in ABE, ASE, and ESL programs.

eLearning Strategies Symposium

The eLearning Strategies Symposium (ESS) is accepting registrations for both individuals and district teams for its third annual event to be held on December 11-13 at the San Mateo Marriott. ESS is a joint partnership of Computer-Using Educators CUE External link opens in new window or tab and the Stanislaus County Office of Education External link opens in new window or tab. Each year, the symposium brings together K-12 teachers... read more

Bob Harper is ACSA Adult Education Administrator of the Year

The Association of California School Administrators (ACSA), the largest umbrella organization for school leaders in the nation, serves more than 14,500 school leaders. Each year ACSA recognizes a select group of individuals for their significant contributions to education. Read more ...

Digital Nation Report Shows Rapid Adoption of Mobile Internet Use

A report released October 16, 2014 by the U.S. Commerce Department's National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) found that Americans are rapidly embracing mobile Internet devices such as smart phones and tablet computers for a wide range of activities beyond just voice communications, such as checking e-mail and using social networks. Read more....

European perspective on how digital learning is impacting adult learner environments

EPALE External link opens in new window or tab (ePlatform for Adult Learning in Europe) is a multilingual open membership community funded by the European Commission. It is the latest development in an ongoing commitment to improve the quality of adult learning in Europe, where an aging population ... continue reading

The California Adult Education Professional Development Calendar Offers Many Opportunities for Professional Development

If you have never visited the California Adult Ed PD Calendar External link opens in new window or tab, we would like to encourage you to visit soon. All three leadership projects, OTAN, CALPRO, and CASAS, use this calendar to list their upcoming workshops. We are confident you will find a topic of interest.

Save Money - Offer Professional Development On-site

Now is the time to schedule professional development activities. We are looking for adult schools that are willing to take a leadership role in providing Professional Development involving the use of technology to teachers in their region. We will provide the training. You just provide the computer lab. There is no charge for this service. If you would like to participate, call us at 800-894-3113 or e-mail lswanson@otan.us for more details!

New Web-based Class Activity for November!

Open Education Resources Through OER Commons

a sign showing Come in we are open

What are OER? According to Wikipedia, “Open Educational Resources (OER) are freely accessible, openly licensed documents and media that are useful for teaching, learning, and accessing as well as for research purposes.”  Think of it! A world of free material to help you prepare your lessons and provide great interactive examples of what you are trying to teach. And you can change it to fit the needs of your class! It doesn’t get any better unless they throw in some chocolate. This month's activity shows you how to search OER Commons to find appropriate activities and then shows you how to use a couple in your classroom.

 

Professional Development

Webinar

Online Workshops & Webinars:

OTAN offers short, online workshops to meet the demands of busy adult educators. Here is a list of a few of the upcoming workshops:

Interactive Quizzing with PowerPoint - Part 2 External link opens in new window or tab with Linda Swanson
December 10, 2014 ~ 3 to 4:30 p.m.

Privacy, Practice, Presence, and You External link opens in new window or tab with Branka Marceta
December 11, 2014 ~ 4 to 5:30 p.m.

Moodle v2: Using the Quiz Activity to Assess Students External link opens in new window or tab with Susan Coulter
December 12, 2014 ~ 1:30 to 3 p.m.

Create FREE Online Quizzes External link opens in new window or tab with Barry Bakin
December 12, 2014 ~ 2 to 3:30 p.m.

Simple Free Web Tools to Use with Your Students External link opens in new window or tab with Kristi Reyes
December 15, 2014 ~ 1:30 to 3 p.m.

Paper (Tests) to Pixels: Lessons Learned from One Technology Project External link opens in new window or tab with Anthony Burik
December 16, 2014 ~ 1 to 2:30 p.m.

Digital Literacy and Citizenship Toolkit External link opens in new window or tab with Branka Marceta
December 17, 2014 ~ 11:00a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Data + Mail Merge = Magic! External link opens in new window or tab with Penny Pearson
December 18, 2014 ~ 3 to 4:30 p.m.

Moodle v2: Getting the Most out of the Gradebook External link opens in new window or tab with Francisca Wentworth
January 8, 2015 ~ 1 to 2:30 p.m.

Google Tools and Drive External link opens in new window or tab with Melinda Holt
January 14, 2015 ~ 12:30 to 2 p.m.

Moodle v2: Create a Course Web Site External link opens in new window or tab with Blair Roy
January 15, 2015 ~ 4 to 6 p.m.

If a workshop appears to be closed and you would like to participate, call us (800-894-3113) and maybe we can get you in.

Other workshops are also available, so keep checking the Professional Development Calendar External link opens in new window or tab for the latest workshop additions.

Face-to-Face Workshops:

Contact us to schedule one of our workshops at your school! We will do most of the work for you. We just need your available computer lab. 800-894-3113

The deadline to register for many Face-to-Face workshops is two weeks before the workshop, so register early to avoid disappointment!

Face to face workshop

Using iPads in Adult Education External link opens in new window or tab
Wednesday, December 17, 2014 ~ 11:10a.m. to 2:10p.m.
ABC Adult School
12254 Cuesta Drive
Cerritos, CA 90703

Interactive Whiteboards - Creating Student Activities External link opens in new window or tab
Monday, January 5, 2015 ~ 9a.m. to 12p.m.
Monterey Adult School - Marina Children Center
3066 Lake Drive
Marina, CA 93933

Google Tools and Drive I External link opens in new window or tab
Thursday, January 8, 2015 ~ 1p.m. to 4p.m.
Downey Adult School
12340 Woodruff Avenue
Downey, CA 90241

Google Tools and Drive II External link opens in new window or tab
Thursday, January 29, 2015 ~ 1p.m. to 4p.m.
Downey Adult School
12340 Woodruff Avenue
Downey, CA 90241

Be Productive and Create Classroom Activities Using Word 2010 External link opens in new window or tab
Friday, Feb 20, 2014 ~ 10a.m. to 1p.m.
Fremont Adult and Cont. Education
4700 Calaveras Avenue
Fremont, CA 94538

OTAN offers a wide variety of no-cost, hands-on, three-hour workshops. We will come to your school if you have at least 10 interested participants and an approved lab. If you have a smaller school and need more participants, consider coordinating with other small schools in your area to fill your workshop. If there is a technology topic not listed that your staff needs assistance with, let us know and we will discuss creating a new workshop to meet that need. Here are some of our workshop titles:

Visit our Web site to see the complete list including descriptions and prerequisites for each, then call Linda Swanson at 800-894-3113 or e-mail her at lswanson@otan.us to schedule a workshop.

Teaching Resources

Interesting Apps

Fry Words
This app has 500 words divided into five levels and then divided into groups of twenty-five words, based on frequency of use and difficulty in a flash card setting. Words can be marked and added to the Review list (use the star to mark and the menu to clear list). The student will hear the word when the card is touched. For the second 500 Fry words download the 'Fry Words 2' app. The Fry words are helpful for adults learning English as a second language. An ad-free version is also available as a paid upgrade. Android External link opens in new window or tab

Fry Words by Innovative Mobile Apps
In 1996, Dr. Fry expanded on Dolch’s sight word lists and research, and published “Fry 1000 Instant Words.” In his research, Dr. Fry found the following results:

  • 25 words make up approximately 1/3 of all items published.
  • 100 words comprise approximately 1/2 of all of the words found in publications.
  • 300 words make up approximately 65% of all written material.

This free app has broken all 1,000 Fry words into unique sets of 10 words each. iPhone, iPad, iPod touch External link opens in new window or tab

Web Sightings:

Easy World of English External link opens in new window or tab
Easy World of English is an interactive web-based program that allows students from all levels to improve their grammar structure, reading, and pronunciation skills, and also to enrich their vocabulary through the use of a picture dictionary. The site is designed for Beginning and Intermediate level ESL learners. They can create an account in order to track their progress, but can also use the site without doing so. The quizzes for the Readings are very difficult, because learners must answer the question exactly as the site authors have set up the fill-ins, but the readings themselves could be very useful in an ESL program.

Common Craft External link opens in new window or tab
Common Craft has a variety of videos, but a few that might be useful to your students are explanations of the following technology topics:
Podcasting External link opens in new window or tab
Cloud Computing External link opens in new window or tab
Computer Viruses and Threats External link opens in new window or tab
Digital Literacy External link opens in new window or tab
Online Citizenship External link opens in new window or tab
Phishing Scams External link opens in new window or tab
QR Codes External link opens in new window or tab
Secure Websites External link opens in new window or tab
Social Media External link opens in new window or tab

NoRedInk External link opens in new window or tab
NoRedInk generates online grammar practice based on the interests of the student. Teachers get to see a color-coded heat map of their students' strengths and weaknesses. The free portion of this tool is more limited than the premium version, but it still looks like a great way for students to practice writing skills. The teaching dashboard gives you lots of good feedback and you don't even have to grade any papers. Give it a try and tell us what you think. We would appreciate the feedback.

SAS Curriculum Pathways External link opens in new window or tab
SAS Curriculum Pathways offers Interactive, standards-based resources in the core disciplines of English Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, Social Studies, and also Spanish. Includes three writing tools - writing planner, writing drafter, and writing reviser – and an interactive atlas map. You will need to create an account, but everything is free.

YouTube Video PD
Once again, YouTube offers some videos you may find helpful if you are looking for more information on using Social Media with your students. Nell Eckersley, an adult educator with a serious interest in technology, is the presenter for all of them:

Pinterest in Adult Education (40 min) External link opens in new window or tab

QR Codes in Adult Education (40 min) External link opens in new window or tab

Basics of Twitter (45 min) External link opens in new window or tab