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Are You Ready for ISTE 2018?

Posted by Cheryl Adams on June 22, 2018

In just three short days, ISTE 2018 will kick off in Chicago, Illinois! Educators from all over the world will gather to learn how to utilize technology in their classrooms and transform learning for their students. We are so incredibly excited to announce that Five-Star will be attending, presenting, and exhibiting at this conference! This is our first time officially attending as a company, but many of our team members have had the chance to experience this conference in the past. Since we are new to the ISTE world, we gathered some tips from our ISTE-veteran friends for maximizing our time at the conference.

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Topics: personalized learning, explore, professional development, lifelong learning

Mindset Shift: Gearing Up for Failure

Posted by Brad Fischer on June 19, 2018

While watching the Indy 500, I began wondering how the amazing drivers got their start. I imagine my two daughters each tucked inside the cockpit of the car revving the engines in anticipation of the start. Over the roar of the engines, I shout my instructions: “OK, girls, here’s what you gotta do. Just step on the gas, hold onto the steering wheel, and stay between the two walls. You got this.” And with a strong slap on the back and push out of the pit, Anna Mae and Lizzie accelerate to 220 MPH, begin zig-zagging around all the other cars - instantly proving they have what it takes to be a IndyCar champion.

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Topics: growth mindset, failure, education

Device Collection: Not for the Faint of Heart

Posted by Jason Roseberry on June 1, 2018

Our techs and schools work tirelessly at the end of the year to ensure that device collection goes smoothly. Though they expect the occasional problem, they don't always anticipate the some of the conversations they have with their students and staff. In honor of the end of the year, we offer you the top ten comments our techs heard during device collection this year.

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Topics: IT, work, technology, support, 1:1

One Size Doesn’t Fit All!

Posted by Kara Yates on May 11, 2018

It used to be, “One size fits all,” then, “One size fits most.” Finally, Burger King announced, “You can have it your way,” and the floodgates blew wide open.

Learners today require that teachers get to know them as individuals and tailor instruction to meet their individual needs to help them gain maximum growth throughout the year. Personalized learning has become one of the newest “edu phrases” of the year. Teachers are working overtime to meet the needs of their students, but are districts doing the same for their teachers?

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Topics: administrators, professional development, personalized learning, pyxis, teaching

Winding Down, Gearing Up

Posted by Keshia Seitz on April 20, 2018

It’s hard to believe, but it’s that time of the year again - SPRING!  With warmer weather in the forecast and a little over a month left until summer vacation, many administrators struggle to find time to get everything done to finish up the school year.  This time crunch makes it especially hard to research ways to help their teachers reflect on the year while also inspiring them to try & learn new things over the summer. If that’s you, then you are in luck! Below are a few easy ways that my schools “WIND DOWN” and “GEAR UP” for the new school year. Enjoy!

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Topics: administrators, pyxis, leadership, teaching, education, action planning, time outside the classroom, teaching strategies, professional development

Grade 10 ISTEP+ Readiness with Pivot Inspect Diagnostic Tests

Posted by Schauna Findlay Relue on March 16, 2018

The Indiana General Assembly’s legislative session just ended, and now we know that we will have the Grade 10 ISTEP+ for two more years with a college entrance exam replacing the Grade 10 ISTEP+ in 2021-22. We still have a lot of work to do to ensure our students are prepared for the current graduation exam and what is to follow.

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Topics: Pivot INSPECT, formative assessment, education

Transform Your District's PD! 

Posted by Zach Dodson on March 14, 2018

PyxisEdu is professional development for teachers like you’ve never seen before! Experience personalized learning in an online environment that features easily-accessible resources grounded in solid instructional pedagogy. Our experts curate resources that are matched to your interests and provide help right when you need it. PyxisEdu keeps track of all your hard work, so when it comes time for teacher license renewal, you get credit for all those hours of growth and learning!

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Topics: pyxis, professional development, administrators, elearning, education

Computer-Adaptive Tests vs. Fixed-Form Assessments

Posted by Adam Jones on February 21, 2018

As technology makes adaptive testing easier than ever, do fixed-form assessments still have a role? K-12 education leaders, especially assessment and curriculum directors, must make difficult choices regarding which screeners, diagnostics, formative assessments, and summative exams to use. By comparing the benefits and drawbacks of computer-adaptive testing and fixed-form assessments, it’s possible to select the right tool for the right job.

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Topics: assessments, data analysis, formative assessment

Five-Star + Google = Awesome Learning!

Posted by Cheryl Adams on January 31, 2018

Five-Star Technology Solutions is proud to announce that we are now a Midwestern-based Google Partner! Google has strict requirements that companies must meet before they can become partners.  The year-long process involved observations, case studies to demonstrate our ability to help schools succeed with Google Tools, and the certification of our staff members.  However, this process ensured that our efforts align with Google’s research-based standards and exams. We strongly believe this partnership will allow us to help school districts across the Midwest create even more awesome learning experiences for kids through the use of Google tools! If you are interested in learning more about what we had to do to become partners and what it means for you, check out the infographic below!

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Topics: education, professional development, Google, GAFE, elearning

Considering eLearning for Snow Days? 

Posted by Lisa Cutshall on January 17, 2018

eLearning smaller.png

Many parents and school faculty are looking for ways to keep the learning going, despite inclement weather closings and delays, as the snow days pile up.  eLearning Days offer an opportunity to avoid disrupted learning, develop digital communication and application skills, and keep those days from accumulating later in the year when everyone is ready for spring or summer break.  Be sure to keep these tips in mind when planning for some awesome eLearning with students:

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Topics: education, teaching, technology, elearning