UTB Newsletter - Issue 19 - 2019 BLOG UPDATES - something we think you'll like - SOMETHING to make you think - AND MORE!

Welcome to the latest UTB newsletter! 

Depending on where you are located I hope you are about to, or were enjoying some holiday time!

For those in the northern hemisphere, I hope your term is ticking along well.

Adelaide, Australia is home for me. One of the great things about working in the UTB team is the opportunity we get to travel and meet fabulous people. I have been on the road in New Zealand for the last two weeks meeting with staff and students from some of the schools that UTB are working with.

I spent the first week in the North Island, working with some great school and fantastic kids, and in the second week based myself in Queenstown. I have been able to share this with fellow trainer Glen and my wife Jen, who flew in at the start of the second week.

I've enjoyed stunning scenery, seen it snow for the first time in my life and really loved this part of the world. Being able to blend work with adventure is so good. Thanks for having me NZ!

- Adrian Francis


  • Something to make you think... Emerging Education Trends
  • Screen recording in the browser
  • Blog posts
  • Something we think you'll like... Teach with Movies
  • Tips and Tricks
  • Looking ahead to 2020
  • Want to join the UTB team? Now's the time!
  • Winner, winner, chicken dinner - find out who has won our Sharing is Caring competition this fortnight and find out how it could be you!

something to make you think...

Goolge for Education - Future of the Classroom

Emerging Trends in K-12 Education

Google has conducted wide ranging research into emerging trends in education. There is a global report available as well as reports specific to participating countires - these are well worth a read.

As educators we know that the change in education is happening all the time, it can be hard to keep up and see what might be around the corner. These reports can be invaluable when considering how you are preparing not only your students for the future, but also how you are supporting your staff to be ready to teach in an ever changing industry.

The eight emerging trends highlighted and explored in the global report are:

  • Digital Responsibility
  • Life Skills and Workforce Perparation
  • Computational Thinking
  • Student-led Learning
  • Collaborative Classrooms
  • Connecting Guardians and Schools
  • Innovative Pedagogy
  • Emerging Technologies

Check out the links below to see the reports and consider how your school is tracking alongside these trends.

Screen Recording in the browser

Screen Recording is an absolutely essential part of the modern classroom. Whether you are recording lessons for your students or they are demonstrating their understanding by making recordings for you - the ability to quickly and easily, record, edit and share your screen has the potential to completely transform teaching and learning in every classroom.

In our last newsletter we pointed you towards two blog posts about screen recording on the iPad - this fortnight we wanted to share with you a few tools that we've been using for screen recording within Chrome.


This super cool chrome extension allows you to capture your screen and records off your camera as well. You can also upload videos off your computer. It is very simple to create, share and embed your videos. You can download the extension here.


Sometimes we just want a quick and simple way to capture our screens - enter RecordScreen.io! No download needed at all! Simply type 'recordscreen.io' into your omnibox and you have screenrecording options that may or may not include you in the bottom left hand corner. When you've finished you simply download the video and use it whereever and however it's needed.


A really simple Chrome Extension that saves your videos directly to your Google Drive. Click here to find it in the Chrome Web Store.

blog posts you may have missed

Check out the practical, helpful tips in our blogs below.

Something you want us to blog about? Make a request here or check out our website to see all our posts.

Getting Started with Bitmoji in your classroom - Bitmojis - personalised digital avatars - are hugely popular on social media sites and are accessible through many different apps. This blog post will explain how to get started with them and how to use them in your classroom - By Donna Golightly

Three useful Chrome Extensions for students - There are so many extensions available these days that it’s very easy to find yourself getting carried away with installing way too many of them. It’s an important skill to be able to filter these effectively. Ask yourself what exactly do you need an extension to do and why do you need to install it? This blog post will focus on three chrome extensions that are helpful for students to use. - By Donna Golightly

Five tips for searching effectively in Google Drive - Although Google Drive has a very powerful search feature, my training sessions always have participants who are having difficulty finding files in Google Drive. This is usually because they are just typing a keyword in the search box and hoping for the best! In this blog post, I’ll share my top five tips for searching effectively in Google Drive. - By Samantha Vardanega

Something we think you'll like...

Teach with Movies

I've yet to meet a student who doesn't like watching movies so when I came across this site I immediately thought about how useful it would be!

There are 100s of movies (actually more than 425!) that can be easily filtered by title or type.

What is also very cool about this site is that it contains lesson plans and learning guides for each film. The focus for the resources provided is on the positive moral messages contained within the movie.

How could this site add value to your classroom programme? Check it out and see what might engage your students.

TIPS AND tricks

Quickly jump to a specific date in your Google Calendar

Here at UTB we're always learning new things about the tools we use every day. Today I (Sam) picked up this handy tip from an article that Mike shared with the team. I hope you find it useful too!

To quickly jump to a specific date in your Google Calendar press the g key on your keyboard. A box will pop up where you can type in the date you want to go to. For example, if I wanted to go to the first day of summer here in the Southern Hemisphere, I could type 1/12/19 or 1 Dec 2019. To quickly return to the current day, press the t key.

Speak the text in any website on the iPad

Do you have students who struggle to read some of the text on websites when they are researching information?

Do you find it easier sometimes to listen to text being read aloud rather than reading it for yourself?

Do you know you can do this on your iPad?

Simply open your settings, tap on 'General' then 'Accessibility'.

Tap on 'Speech' and then toggle 'Speak Selection' on.

Now all you need to do is select any text on a website, or within any app, and choose 'Speak' - the text will then be read out aloud for you.

Note: you can change the voice and the speed of the speech in the same page where you turned the speak selection on.

looking ahead to 2020

The UTB team are planning out their calendars for next year. We are aiming to make sure we are giving you what you need, where you need it!

This would be a great time for you to let us know what sort of training and workshops you'd like to see us offer near you. Our plan is to get dates and locations locked in now so you can talk to whoever is in charge of the PLD purse strings at your school and get booked in early.

If you've never been to any of our training you can check out some of our feedback here -we're pretty proud of our 4.84 out of 5 rating from over 1700 workshop trainees!

So fill in this form and let us know what you're after! We'll let you know our plans soon!

Join the UTB Team as a trainer!

We have a few training opportunities to join the UTB training team in Australia and New Zealand.

We're keen to hear from people who may be interested in full time, part time or casual work with us.

If you are a passionate educator, digitally savvy and keen to explore training options fill in this form to express your interest. We'll get back to you with more details!

WIN a free UTB Online Course!


We love getting your feedback about ideas you've used from this newsletter or from one of our training sessions!

In fact, we get such a kick out of it that every fortnight we want to give someone who shares the love a free online course of your choice - valued at up to $300!

All you need to do is a share a photo or video of an activity that was inspired by something we shared with you (could be from face to face, online training or the newsletter), with a quick caption telling us what's happening in it!

Here are a couple of ways you can share...

  • Share it on Twitter or Instagram and tag us in with @Usingtechbetter, #utbSHARE and #utbPD
  • Not on Twitter or Insta? No worries - email it to us at support@usingtechnologybetter.com and we'll share it out on our social media

NB: Please make sure that you have permission and that you also give us permission to share any photos! It's often a good idea to put smiley stickers over students faces and anything else identifying in the image. OR just share images that don't have students in them.

Check with your school administrators what your policy on this is! Safety first everyone! :)



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Created with an image by Noom Peerapong - "untitled image"