Logo of Promethean Boards Bound: A Blog About Educational Technology featuring a cartoon map of the Upper Cumberland region


Open Educational Resources are freely available, often open-licensed 
documents and media which are beneficial for instructional, assessment and research purposes.
OER commons has more than 44,000 resources you can search or browse through.

Migrating k12 email to pcsstn.com mail

Ever wish you could display an ipad2, iphone or the like on your Promethean Board? How about if it showed up on your computer with OS 10.6.8+? Reflection (go to their site) uses AirPlay to send the picture to your Mac. The free download is time limited, but for $14.99 you can even record a video of your device.

We can check your plugins and stuff

Update ActivInspire and your drivers

The Current ActivDriver on Mac OS is 5.8.46 and the latest ActivInspire is 1.7.58968

Awesome Resources for the Promethean Activclassroom

Special Keys

You probably call this the "Apple Key", but it's officially called the Command Key and it is located near your spacebar. It is used on a Mac much like the control key is used on Microsoft Windows®; example: control-c on Windows copies and on a Mac we use command-c; control-v pastes on Windows and command-v pastes on Mac OS.

The Option Key is located near the Command Key and is sometimes called the ALT key. This key can frustrate a Windows user, as it doesn't work as a Windows ALT key does (you'll often use the Command Key on Mac where ALT is used in Windows), such as when tabbing through open applications: on Windows it's ALT-Tab, on a Mac it's Command-Tab.

The Control Key is located near the Command Key and has special funtions on a Mac (see "Right Clicking" below).

Exiting A Bad Program

On Windows, Alt+F4 will quickly terminate a program.

On Mac OS, Command+Q will quickly terminate a program.

The "3-Finger Salute"

On Windows, when a program stops behaving properly, you can press Control+Alt+Delete to invoke the Task Manager to make an application stop.

On Mac OS, you can accomplish the same thing by pressing Command+Option+Escape; this invokes the Force Quit menu and you can make applications stop.

"Right Clicking"

Sometimes you need to right click. On most computers it's easy, as they come with a two-button mouse. On Mac OS, you typically find a single-button mouse.

You can plug a two-button mouse in to a Mac and it will work. The reason is because two-button mice work on Unix and Mac OS is a Unix variant that uses parts from FreeBSD's and NetBSD's implementation of Unix.

You can also "right click" on a Mac with a single button mouse. To do so, you can do either of the following:

  1. Press and hold the Control Key while clicking.
  2. (This one only works if you have a Mac with a touchpad - usually a laptop; to enable this, go to System Preferences, click on Trackpad and place a check in the box next to "For secondary clicks, place two fingers on the trackpad then click the button") place two fingers on the touchpad while clicking. 

Are you experiencing annoying popup windows? You might have Malware ('mal' from French meaning bad, and 'ware' as in software).

If you are on Mac OS 10.7 or above, try Adware Medic, it can remove malware: http://www.adwaremedic.com/index.php

If you're on Windows, try Spybot Search & Destroy https://www.safer-networking.org/dl/ or Malware Bytes http://www.malwarebytes.org/12b/

You can help yourself from getting such stuff on your computer with two handy plugins that work in your browser:

To prevent popups, try Adblock Plus: https://adblockplus.org/

And to identify risky sites, try Web of Trust: https://www.mywot.com/

Note: you have to install these two in each browser. So if you sometimes use Google Chrome and sometimes use Firefox, install it in both. The same thing applies for other browsers such as Internet Explorer (or Edge), Safari, and Opera.

The purpose of this blog is to communicate ideas to teachers and share best practices in regards to the use of technology in education. My role as a School-Based Integrated Technology Specialist is to help teachers implement technology as part of their teaching strategies to improve student achievement.

According to the findings in Robert J. Marzano and Mark W. Haystead 's FINAL research (July 2009), page 41,

"Considered as a set, one might predict relatively large percentile gains in student achievement under the following conditions:
  • A teacher is experienced.
  • A teacher has used Promethean ActivClassroom for an extended period of time.
  • A teacher uses Promethean ActivClassroom extensively in the classroom but not beyond 80% of the time.
  • A teacher has high confidence in his or her ability to use Promethean ActivClassroom"
This blog is designed to help the instructor become more familiar with ActivInspire which should assist the instructor becoming more confident in the use of Promethean's ActivClassroom, which includes the use of ActivInspire.

Is My Software Working?

  • Test Flash
  • Test Shockwave
  • Test Silverlight - it works if you see bouncing balls.
  • Test Java - please note the Java 1.6 is 32 or 64 bit while java 1.7 is 64 bit only; that means you need to test Java 1.7 in a 64-bit browser (on a Mac, as of this writing, such as Firefox or Safari-- right now Google Chrome is 32-bit only)


I'll use the acronym tag and highlight words in gold; if you aren't used to the acronym tag (it's very rarely used, but is really handy), if you see a word in this blog that looks like this: NETS-T I not only made it a hyperlink (it will send you to a web page), but if you hover your mouse over the word, it explains what the acronym means. If you see something like ISTE, please note it's not in orange, so there's no hyperlink, but if you hover your mouse over the word, you still get the definition.

ISTE has standards for students, teachers, technology leaders and facilitators, and even administrators; you may find them here:

Please note that some of these are easily met within your daily routine, and I'll be blogging about them out of order, trying to address the ones you may feel less comfortable with at first.

Mark West,
Apr 18, 2012, 8:36 AM
Mark West,
Aug 3, 2012, 7:32 AM