JumpStart: A Technology Course for Educators

In The Teacher’s Guide to Tech, you get a huge and comprehensive volume of tech tools you can use inside and outside the classroom. But to really learn how to use these tools, you need practice.

Some people will get this practice on their own, exploring tools and trying things out until they find what they need. But if you need more structure, a more systematic path through some key foundational tools and skills that will better prepare you for learning more, then JumpStart will be a great fit.

This online course would be ideal for a group study, for professional development, or as a curriculum for a college-level teacher preparation course. It could even be used for self-paced independent study.

Course Format

The course contains 10 modules. In each module, you will learn about a specific category of tech tools, then do a hands-on project using that type of tool.

The learning begins with the Course Manual, which explains the project and how learning this kind of tool will improve your classroom instruction.


Next, you move to the video lessons, which teach you exactly how to do each project, step-by-step. Notes pages are provided for every lesson to give you a place to keep track of what you learn.

As you complete each module, you will display your finished projects in an online portfolio–a blog that will document your progress. To give you a clear idea of what each finished project should look like, a sample portfolio is provided, containing examples of all 9 projects.


What You’ll Learn

This course gives you opportunities to get hands-on practice with the following tools and skills:

Module 1: Basic Blogging
In this module, you’ll learn a basic set of skills to build a blog using the Edublogs platform. You will then use the blog for the rest of the course to submit the rest of your hands-on projects and reflect on what you’re learning.

Module 2: Online Collaboration
Collaboration and discussion are essential components of a good education, and if we take advantage of digital collaboration tools, our opportunities to work together grow exponentially. In this module, you will set up an online collaboration space using a tool called Slack.

Module 3: Mind Mapping
Making our thinking visual is one of the most powerful ways to boost learning. This module has you creating a digital mind map using a tool called Sketchboard.

Module 4: Curation
The thoughtful gathering and selecting of resources—also known as curation—has an incredible range of classroom uses. In this module, you will curate your own collection of resources using a platform called Elink.

Module 5: Screencasting
Once you learn how to create a screencast video—where you narrate and record anything you put on your computer screen—you can teach something once, then let it teach for your forever. In this module you will create your own screencast video using a program called Screencast-O-Matic.

Module 6: Flipped Learning
Flipping allows you to put the instruction into an online format, which gives you more class time for one-on-one interaction with students. In this module, you will use a platform called TES Teach to create a lesson you can use for flipped or blended learning.

Module 7: Digital Assessment
If you’re still doing all of your assessment with paper or scan-tron, now is the time to broaden your horizons. This module has you create an online assessment using the Quiz feature in Google Forms.

Module 8: Hyperdocs
These hyperlinked documents that allow students to navigate their own learning are one of the fastest growing trends in education. Learn how to make your own.

Module 9: QR Codes
Those cute little squares have so much potential! Learn how QR codes work and how to create them. Then create a project that will let you put their power to work.

Module 10: Digital Presentation
What teacher doesn’t need to give presentations? This module uses a tool called Haiku Deck to help you design a fresh-looking presentation that is a far cry from “Death by PowerPoint.”

Is this course right for you?

This course is ideal for people with beginning to intermediate technology skills.

Absolute Novice: If you feel like “computers hate you” and break out in hives every time someone mentions technology, this course will be a challenge, especially in the first few modules, but if you stick with it, you’ll get to the end feeling MUCH more confident about your tech skills.

Beginner: If you can use common programs like Microsoft Word and PowerPoint, are usually able to locate information online, and can perform basic tasks like sending people links in an e-mail, this course will be a great fit for you.

Intermediate: If you have started to get your feet wet with technology (maybe you’ve set up a class website or used Google Classroom) but you want a more well-rounded tech foundation, you may find some of the modules easier than others, but should still find plenty to learn here.

How much does the course cost?

JumpStart tuition is $119 for the full course. Some individual modules will also be sold separately for people who just want to sharpen a few skills; these will be priced at $15 each.

Professional Development Credit

Those who complete this course are eligible for 35 hours of professional development credit, contingent on approval by your district or state. Information is included in this packet for submitting your completed coursework for a personalized Certificate of Completion for 35 Professional Development Hours.


JumpStart will be ready in early May. To be notified as soon as we are accepting enrollments, sign up here, then check your inbox for a confirmation email: