Technology Update #1

Technology Integration Update

Welcome to the first issue of Westside.Technology’s Technology Integration Update. We will be trying to send out these updates at least once a month. In it, you will find great tips and tricks, links to district resources and much more. I hope you enjoy. If you have any feedback, please let me (Matt) know.

Westside.Technology Declassified

Episode 8 is now posted! Check out Paul, Greg and Matt discuss the new Google Sites,, amazing features in Preview and more!
Click here to check it out.

Tips and Tricks

Cold Weather + Technology
With winter fast approaching we would like to give you some tips on taking care of your device!
1. Careful Storage: Never leave a laptop, even in a well-padded and insulated laptop case in your vehicle for more then an hour in cold weather. The laptop could freeze causing Parts to become damaged.
2.  Let it warm up** Once you bring a laptop in from the cold – allow it to warm up to room temperature before booting.  3. ****Do not use devices such as mug warmers, pocket warmers or hair dryers to heat or keep a laptop warm. They are not designed for this purpose and can create problems as they will not heat or keep a laptop warm in the right way. They could heat the wrong parts of a laptop or cause it to generate too much heat and melt internal components  4. Keep it out of the cold: **Whenever possible stay out of direct exposure to cold weather conditions by staying in a vehicle, inside a building or other type of shelter. Protecting your laptop from excessive dampness or wet from snow will keep your keyboard from freezing and other problems from developing.
So what should you do if your laptop is left in the cold?
The first step is simply to let the computer thaw. The laptop should be at room temperature before you power it on. If the laptop is in sleep mode, you should avoid even opening the laptop, since that may automatically wake the computer. Even once the computer gets to room temperature, it may have condensation on it because of the change in temperature. If your computer looks wet let it dry naturally and bring it into Tech Support. If you turn on your computer when it is wet, it may short one or more electrical connections, which could cause the laptop to stop functioning.

The Doctor Is In

Question: I’m trying to log into Blackboard, what credentials do I use?
Blackboard uses the same credentials (username and password) as your computer and or iPad. It is also the same as the first part of your email address. For example, smith.jonathan and then the password would be the same as your email password.
If you have difficulties, please submit a help desk ticket to and we will help you out!

Thought of the Week

The Westside “Philosophy of Technology”

By Paul Lindgren
Our “philosophy of technology” at Westside Community Schools is not big on prescribing or dictating. Our district hires great teachers and provides them with powerful technological tools, personalized training, and compassionate support. We then expect them to try new things, keep what works, and then share with others.

This is how we build upon our successes and, over time, organically grow authentic and effective technology uses for the learning process.

Please remember that it is not what is happening on our students’ screens that is important. Rather it is what is happening with our students’ brain cells that is of the utmost significance. Teach your students to make powerful points—not just Powerpoints!

Interesting Links

Learn about the new Google Sites:
Check out how to make a custom Google Search Engine:
Download Microsoft Office on your home PC or Mac: