Monday, January 8, 2018

Meet the new Google Calendar

Google has updated Google Calendar.  The new calendar looks different with a different color palate and many new features designed to make the calendar easier to use.  

If you would like to try the new calendar now, click on the Use new Calendar button (colored blue) on the top of the page.  If you choose to wait, all users will be upgraded by the end of February.

So, what's new with Google Calendar?

Well, right off, you will notice that the calendar screen is easier to read.  The dates are larger and the month calendar is larger.  

If you use many calendars, the new calendar allows you to more easily recognize which calendars are currently visible by using check boxes to indicate the calendar is on (checked) or off (unchecked).  

Adding a coworker's or district calendar is much easier and more prominent on the screen.  Simply click the plus sign + next to the words Add a coworker's calendar.

Adding Events
Adding events is easier with a new Add event button.

Also, when you add an event, you now have additional capabilities in adding rich formatting and links to spreadsheets, docs, and presentations. Putting that information at your fingertips when you need it.

Sharing Calendars
Sharing calendars has gotten easier.  The Settings screen is easier to read and understand. 

I upgraded to the new calendar over a month ago and have not had any difficulties in learning the new interface.  It's very intuitive.  My advice, check it out.  I think you will like it.

If you would like additional information about the Google Calendar upgrade, check out the GSuite Time for a refresh: meet the new Google Calendar for web OR Google's Calendar Help.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Google Classroom Update

If you are using Google Classroom, you may be interested to know that Google has made some updates to Google classroom including the ability to import grades from a Google Form directly into your Google Classroom.

Grade and return a Google Forms quiz
  1. If the assignment has a Google Forms quiz, and grade importing was enabled when you created the assignment, click Import grades.
  2. Click Import to confirm.
    Note: Importing grades will overwrite any grades already entered.
    You’ll see the grades autofill at the students’ names.
  3. Click Return to return the grades to students.
    Students can also view their grades in Forms.
Note: If you didn’t enable grade importing when you created the assignment, you can edit the assignment to enable it after the assignment is posted and completed by students. 
For more information on Grading and Returning Assignments in Google Classroom, check out the Google Help Pages.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

How to Enter Quarter Grades in Aspen (MS/HS)

How to Enter Quarter Grades in Aspen

Your Aspen gradebook is similar to the paper gradebook that we all used to use.  It’s a private document that only you can see.  At the end of each quarter, your student grades and comments must be posted to make them visible to the school and district.

PostGrades1.pngTo Post your grades in Aspen Gradebook,

  1. Go to the Scores page in your Gradebook
  2. In the Grade Columns drop down box, select Post Columns (see red arrow)
  3. PostGrades2.pngThe Aspen Posting columns will appear.  These are
    • Q1Grd - Quarter 1 Grade
    • Q1ClsAbs - Quarter 1 Class Absences
    • Q1Com1 and Q1Com2 - Quarter 1 Comment 1 and Comment 2 fields
  4. Select Options -> Update Post Columns
  5. This will take you through the Update Post Columns wizard.  (see images below)
    • Step 1. Select the Grade Term (Q1) and the Grades to update (all students).
    • Step 2. Select Quarter 1 Grade = Average:Q1 and Q1 Class Absence= Class Absence Total
    • Step 3. Confirms the choices made in Step 1 and Step 2.
Step 1
Step 2
Step 3
  1. Click Finish.
  2. You should notice that the Q1Grd and Q1ClsAbs fields will now be populated.
  3. Add comment codes (see WHS Comment Codes, McCall Comment Codes)

Verifying your Grades
  1. Verify your grade in Q1Grd against the grade from your Gradebook which is labeled Q1.
  2. If you would like to change the grade, simply click on the grade in the Q1Grd field and change it. Grades that you have modified will be indicated by a red, crossed-out circle.  PostGrades7.png

Applying the N-Rule (5 or more absences)
  1. In Aspen, you will apply the N-Rule using the comment fields
    • 100 N-Rule: May lose credit for course due to to attendance issues. Contact school administration.
    • 101 N-Rule: Loss of credit, due to attendance issues, under consideration. Contact school administration


What does the pushpin mean?  
    • If the pushpin is black ,
      you can enter grades for this column, but you cannot post them to transcripts yet.
    • If the pushpin is green with a triangle ,
      you can enter and post grades for this column.
    • If the pushpin is red with a square ,
      you already posted the information to transcripts. If you need to change a grade, you will be able to repost your grade for 5 days after the report cards are distributed.  After that, you will need to complete the grade change form (see Guidance department).

Once you have verified the grades, added comments, and applied the N-Rule if necessary, you can Post your grades. Posting your grades sends a copy of the grades in the field Q1Grd (and comments) to the report card / student transcript.
  1. Once the posting period has opened, the pushpin will turn from black to green.  The green signifies that you can post your grades.
  2. To Post your grades,  click Option -> Post Grades
  3. The Post Grades pop-up will appear.
  4. PostGrades9.png Fill in
    • Grade Term = Q1
    • Grades to post = Term Grades for all Students.
  5. Click Ok
  6. Once your grades are posted, your push pin will change from green to red.
  7. You must Post Grades for each class individually.


  • You may re-post your grades as many times as you please until the posting period ends.
  • There will be no printed verification sheets.  Instead, you can verify your grades on the Post Columns page of your gradebook (see steps 9 and 10).
  • Want a printable copy of this verification page?  
    • Select Reports -> Gradebook Sheet
    • The Gradebook Sheet will appear.  
    • Click Run.
    • The printable version of your Post Columns page of your gradebook will pop-up
    • Select Printer icon at the top of the Gradebook Sheet page.
  • If you planning on using the same comment field for most of the students in your class, you can quickly add the comment to all students by using Options -> Fill Down Values.  Then just change those students who need different comments.

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