Gaggle_net


What is Gaggle?
Gaggle is not just email any more.  It is a suite of collaborative tools for students and teachers.   There are student and teacher blogs, digital lockers for storage, discussion boards, integrated Google Apps, Gaggle Tube (vetted You Tube videos for education), an integrated calendar, social walls, a Cyber Safety course AND email!  All parts of Gaggle are monitored and inappropriate behavior will be reported to KCS administration.

Let's take a look at some of Gaggle's tools:

Log in - Make sure you use the complete address the first time you log in.  Your Gaggle address for KCS will be user.name@kcs.gaggle.net

Blogs - Blogs can be used as an online journal for students.  They can respond to writing prompts, complete literature reviews (book reports), log current events that are interesting to them, create an e-portfolio, or log their research findings when writing a research paper.  Teachers can restrict the blogs by viewer (teacher only, class, school, district, other gaggle users, and the world wide web), can determine if a student's name is displayed, and can restrict who can or cannot comment on the student's writing.  Classroom blogs can also become a private discussion board.

Chat Rooms - chat rooms are assigned to educators.  Gaggle's chat rooms are monitored, which helps teachers encourage proper chat room behavior. Other monitored social tools included in Gaggle are a Social Wall, Friend Management, and Texting.

Digital Lockers - this is an online storage space in the cloud for Gaggle users. Teachers can store class notes, forms, permission slips.  Students can store homework assignments without having to use flash drives.  Files can be shared between Gaggle users so teachers can create homework templates and share them with students.  Students can complete assignment drafts and share them with their teachers for feedback.

Discussion Boards - ideas for using the discussion boards are using them as a homework center, for differentiated instruction, character impersonations, and class meetings.  Discussions are monitored and filtered.

Email - since KCS has the paid version of Gaggle.net, users can retrieve their email on mobile devices as well as the school's computers.  All emails are monitored and archived for 365 days.

Gaggle Tube - this is a filtered version of You Tube.  All videos are displayed without offensive or annoying ads in the background. Teachers can find, preview, and play videos for their students through this interface.  Teachers can upload videos to be added to the Gaggle Community and tag them "approved for students".  

Mark it Up - this is a teacher tool used to make notes on assignments submitted to the Assignment Drop Box.  Teachers can select it by right clicking on an assignment that has been submitted with an attachment.  Mark it up works with Word, Power Point, Excel, and several image file types.
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