Command Central for Teachers

Picture a teacher commanding a class of students armed with computers. That teacher issues orders using the projector at the front of the room, patrols the room gathering intel by monitoring student’s displays (but lacks the appropriate camouflage), navigates her way among the rows of desks and piles of backpacks to respond to signals for help, tries her best to rally the troops and encourage participation, and parachutes in to refocus the students’ attention on the operation at hand. This teacher needs Insight! Insight is command central for teachers, providing a grand control panel to: reduce student distractions, demonstrate skills, keep students on task, and encourage classroom participation. There are many ways this software can assist the teacher in the classroom.

Ms. Goldschmidt is going to demonstrate for her students the steps to download their personal narrative from Google Docs as a PDF, and add it to the File Cabinets of their ePortfolio Google Sites. Rather than hoping that all the students will watch the screen and not be doing something else on their netbooks, she uses Insight to take control of the students’ netbooks and display her computer’s screen on their netbooks. Now students can watch the demonstration close up, but their keyboards and track pads are disabled so that they won’t be tempted to do other things.

Students in Mrs. Hainline’s class are presenting their animated stories to the class. Rather than the student using the teacher’s station to login to his/her Pixton account and display the story, Mrs. Hainline uses Insight to display a student’s screen on her computer and through the projector so that the class can watch the story with the student controlling it from his/her own netbook.

Mrs. Troxell needs to gauge how many of her students have grasped today’s lesson. She uses the vote feature to gather anonymous feedback from students. She sends multiple choice and yes/no questions to each student’s laptop and can view on her screen how many have responded and their answers.

While doing some online research a student in Mr. Hesson’s class finds an online resource that all the students could use. Rather than asking students to type in the long, messy web address, Mr. Hession uses Insight’s co-browse feature to access the website on his station and send it to all the student’s netbooks.

To assess her students retention of yesterday’s grammar lesson, Mrs. Tobin uses Insight to send a digital test of multiple choice and true/false questions to her students on their netbooks. She can view the students’ responses in real time and determine quickly if she needs to review any of yesterday’s lesson. These results can also be exported and then imported into the SISK12 gradebook.

In Mrs. Maushmeyer’s room during TNT time the students are using the netbooks to work on various assignments. While using Insight to monitor all the students screens, she notices that Greg is choosing to play a game. First, she grabs a screenshot of his display to document his inappropriate use and then closes the game on his station. She sends a message to Greg’s netbook directing him to focus on his math assignment and just for good measure, blocks the website on his netbook.

Mrs. Schmidt’s students are working in small groups. Rather than yelling over their conversations to get the attention of all students to make them aware that they have 1 minute left of discussion time, she covertly and unobtrusively flashes a warning message on the netbooks. When the minute is up and it’s time to report to the class, she blanks the screens of all the netbooks, locking the keyboards and trackpads, displaying the message “Attention please. Time for reporting.”

The students in Ms. Gargus’ room have just returned all their netbooks to the cart for charging. To be sure that the students did shut down all the computers, she uses Insight to display any netbooks still running and and shuts them down from her computer, without physically searching through the cart trying to determine which one is still running.

The students in Mrs. Zumwalt’s room are completing an online quiz and she doesn’t want them to be able to access their notes or search the Internet. She uses Insight to disable Internet Explorer and Word while the students are taking the quiz.

Ms. Stover is leading her student through how to turn in their assignment digitally in Google Docs. She has shared her screen with the students so that it appears in a separate window on their laptops which they can resize and position as needed. As she demonstrates where to click the students can follow along doing the same thing on their laptops.

We have Insight installed on our student used netbooks, desktops, and laptops, and on the teachers’ stations where these devices are used. Soon it will be available in the Downstairs Lab, Lab A, and Lab B. Teachers with iPads or iPhones can also install the free iPad app or iPhone/iPod app, allowing them to circulate around the room taking command central with them.

To view screencasts (thanks to Mr. VanStavern) and access a printed guide on how to use Insight, see the Insight Management System course on our Willard eLearning site. Willard Teachers: To count your completion of this online course towards 2 hours of Salary Advancement, get preapproval from your administrator on the Salary Advancement Workshop Form. You will need to log in to Moodle to document your participation, as opposed to logging in as a guest.


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