Koontz Media and Digital Tools Blog


Introduction to SmartBoard Videos

Posted by Jason Jones at 2/18/2015
Here are a few videos that Tom has found to help you get acquainted with the SmartBoard until we have the opportunity to provide a training time.


Windows 8.1 User Instructions

Posted by Sheila Lance at 11/3/2014 3:00:00 PM

Windows 8.1 User Instructions

The time has finally arrived for our Windows 8.1 migration. All teacher laptops will be updated between 10/03 and 10/14. The information below will hopefully help you with the new look and "feel" of Windows 8.1. As always, Jason, Tom or I will be happy to help you with the transition.
   Windows 8.1 Login
A paper copy of the Login Matrix was placed in all teacher mailboxes on 11/03/14
      (You can review the BCS Staff Login Matrix here)
   * Your Login for Windows 8.1 is similar to your ZScaler login*
                           Username: UID # (if you do not know your UID look it up here)
                           Password: Birthdate (YYYYMMDD)


The information below was copied from the Digital Learning Section of the BCS Website.
First Time Login? 

Starting Windows 8.1 for the first time

Unlocking the computer and signing in

Your new log in for Windows 8:

Login using your UID, Unique Identifier. This must be done at school one time before taking out of the school or network . This is NOT your  Novell login or your employee ID number.

Login: UID #

Password: birthdate (YYYYMMDD)

The first thing that you see on Windows 8.1 Update is the lock screen. The lock screen shows a full-screen image, the date and time, battery status, network status, and notifications (if they’re turned on).


To unlock your computer and sign in:

  • With a keyboard, press any key.

  • On the sign-in screen, type your UID and password, which is your birthday,( YYYYMMDD), and  click the arrow or press Enter. This opens the Start screen.

  • After logging in, change your password by pressing CTRL + ALT + DELETE.

Using the Start screen

For tablets and most touch-enabled laptops, the Start screen appears after you sign in. If you prefer the classic desktop you may press the Windows logo key  Windows logo key.

start menu

You can use the Start screen to:

  • Shut down or restart the computer

  • Log out of your computer next to your account picture and name, called sign out now

  • Launch apps (Word, Microsoft suite..)

  • Organize apps

  • Search for apps, settings, and files

  • Go to the desktop

  • Open File Explorer (formerly Windows Explorer)

  • Open Microsoft Internet Explorer 11

  • Go to the Windows Store. You must have a Microsoft account to download apps.

Power and Search buttons on the Start screen. Power and Search buttons are available in the upper-right corner of the Start screen next to your account picture or Name. You'll be able to quickly and easily shut down your PC or search for things right from Start.

The desktop

On BCS computers that have been set to start at the desktop, the Start screen can be accessed by tapping or clicking the Start button, or by pressing the Windows logo key Windows logo key.


Using charms

Windows 8.1 features Charms, which appear like a toolbar on the right side of the screen. Charms are available from both the Start screen and the desktop. You drag the cursor to the right top or bottom corners and they appear, they will disappear when mouse is moved.

With a keyboard, press the Windows logo key Windows logo key+C.


You can use Charms as follows:

  • Use the Search Charm to search system wide for an app, setting, or file. You can also use the Search charm in apps from the Windows Store.

  • To add  Buncombe County Applications type Software Center

  • Installing a printer type Printers and select Devices and Printers

  • Use the Share Charm to share content between store-style apps. For example, you can start the Maps app, and then use the Share charm to send a screen shot (picture) to a coworker.

  • Use the Start charm to go to the Start screen, to the desktop, or to the last-started store-style app if you’re already on the Start screen.

  • Use the Devices charm to manage devices, such as an additional monitor, Ben Q, data projectors.




    Use the Settings charm to:         

    • Change PC settings.

    • PC Info to find your computer name

    • Personalize your PC.

    • Restart or shut down your PC.(Power)

    • Turn notifications on or off.

    • Check network availability.

    • Adjust volume.

    • Adjust screen brightness.

    • Access online Help


To display charms:

  • Swipe in from the right edge of the screen. With a mouse, point to the upper-right or lower-right corner of the screen. With a keyboard, press the Windows logo key Windows logo key+C.



The information above should help to get you started with Windows 8.1. Check back for updates with more functions and features in Windows 8.1.




Posted by Jason Jones at 10/29/2014 8:00:00 AM
Welcome Koontz Staff!
We (Tom, Jason and Sheila) are excited to establish and maintain a tech blog for you. What would I need a tech blog for (you might ask)? This blog will be chock full of pertinent information that relates to your everyday use of technology.  
Check back frequently for updates!


Tech. Thursday: 10/30/2014

Posted by Jason Jones at 10/30/2014 9:00:00 AM

Google Forms 

In our opinion, one of  the most useful and time-saving features of Google Drive is Google Forms. We know a lot of you already use forms for collecting contact  information or classroom surveys.  If you are not yet familiar with forms, think of it as a way to create quick surveys that can be used for a number of applications. The form automatically aggregates this data into a Google Spreadsheet, making forms a great way to quickly collect and share information quickly and easily.

We have been lucky to see  teachers and administrators use Google Forms in very creative and inventive ways. We recently saw a blog post titled “101 ways to use Google forms in the classroom”. We will not cover quite that many, but we feel there are some extremely useful applications of this easy to use tool. As the iPads start to roll in, Google forms is probably the easiest way to share and collect information from students.

This Thursday we will focus on a few key applications:

  1. An awesome way to collect and organize students digital work. A form used to gather “shared” URL links to Google drive resources allows you to get to a whole classes work in one spreadsheet.

  2. A quick exit ticket or formative assessment tool. When combined with an awesome tool called flubaroo this is a no hassle grade.

  3. Collecting survey or student feedback information. The possibilities here are endless, you can get feedback on lessons, get opinions on class activities, learn about students digital habits as these can be anonymous or have students submit a name, etc.

If you are brand new to forms, here are a couple quick videos that might help you get started faster on Thursday. Because Google is constantly updating some things may look slightly different, but the basic ideas and tools are unchanged:

The basics of Google Forms

A Google forms overview for Teachers

If you are experienced with forms, and have some additional ideas you think we should cover, please comment below or contact us prior to Thursday. Thanks


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