Thursday, February 28, 2013

Sliderocket To Make A Sliderocket

A teacher wanted to know more about Sliderocket.  Below you will find complete details of all the features.

Very important aspect of using Sliderocket with students is to use the EDU account.  See how...

SlideRocket Player will allow for you to view a presentation from your iPad.  Connect your iPad to a digital projector via wireless or wired for all to see.  I will have my iPad with the presentation next to the teacher and the computer that they will be using.  Great reminder to show all tools in an organized manner.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Restoring Template Gallery To "Create" Button in Google Drive

A small time ago, the Google Create button changed...

With this change, the Template Gallery, which our teachers use, did not display.

See how you can get it back (Click Pictures To Enlarge)

Thanks to Andreas Johansson for creating a great video to explain it.

Google Instant Not Showing...In 20 Seconds

Google Instant was not showing up.  It's probably because my four year old computer was running too slow!

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Google Search By Reading Level...In 20 Seconds Watermark Your Photos

Since 1979, Pulaski High School has celebrated student creativity by showcasing poetry, photography, art, cartoons, poetry, short stories, and essays.

Recently, these creations have been placed on the web.  The advisor, Mrs. Deprey, wants to ensure that the students' work is copyrighted, especially the photographs.

Enter A no account needed tool to add watermarks to work.  View video tutorial!

Example of Copyright Watermark on Image For Computer or iPad

@teachweb20 sent me which provides another opportunity to organize thoughts into a web.  Her students are using it for writing.  I am passing it along to speech teachers and our FACS teachers who have students cook or bake.  Every person who uses this can organize their thoughts into clear web images.

The interface is very friendly.

It can be used on the iPad with the Chrome browser which is depicted from the screen shot below.

The video below explains all of the features of 

View how Mr. Krause used the technology resource.

Monday, February 25, 2013

East Leyden High Chromebook Visit Review

Friday presented a great opportunity for our school district to send eight teachers and administrators to East Leyden High School.  We were provided a day long opportunity to witness the implementation of Chromebooks to all students.  Every student has one Chromebook.  The school is also a Google Apps For Education District.

View Entire Presentation East Leyden Produced

Facts that I was able to gather:
  • Superintendent stated some time ago that we (Leyden School District) was either going to implement Chromebooks sooner or later, but they were going to implement them
  • Visited North Carolina who implemented Chromebooks with district, staff, and school board.  After the visit the Board of Education stated, "knowing what we know now, we can't afford to not do this"
  • Chromebook removes a ton of logisitcs
  • They are in their first year of integrating Chromebooks
  • Homework is always present through the cloud
  • Some distractions occurred.  Twitter and Facebook needed to be blocked
  • Observed Chromebooks being utilized in different ways
  • Some students were checking email while teachers were teaching
  • Went "all in" with this initiative
  • Created mandatory parent meeting
  • 3,500 Chromebooks To Students
  • 260 Teachers
  • Bought "Loaner" computers and have plan for their use
  • Expected that students charge Chromebooks each night
  • Leyden created Digital Evolution Summit for teachers who led it
  • The school district uses "Open Class" for classroom management 
  • Incorporated Tech Support Internship
    • Students learning five different strands of hands-on technology
    • Students expected to assess various issues that occur throughout the day for students and teachers and come up with best approach to resolving them
    • Students work on various projects throughout the year
    • Slide 29 of presentation
    • Students blog about their TSI experiences
    • Passion for technology
  • Students loved the fact that homework is always available
  • Students loved the collaboration component
  • Student perspective on Chromebooks
  • Student and parent procedures
View video of actual students and teachers in action.

Personal thoughts as we decide the direction we are moving as a district:
  • IT managers will love Chromebooks.  Minimal set up. Hear Some Thoughts
  • School must be Google Apps For Education
  • We need to go "all in" if we are to accomplish true transformation. All in with whatever device we choose
  • Pulaski School District is incorporating so much of the transformation of learning with a small amount of devices at this time!  Yeah, for teachers!
  • The best thing I saw was the creation of the "Tech Support Internship" (TSI)
    • 90 high school students helping staff and students with tech support
    • Students also learn five strands of tech certification
    • We need to implement this as soon as possible
  • iPads still need to be utilized!  The creation piece of the iPads is above and beyond what a Chromebook can do.  My opinion.  
  • Ideal setup: Every student has a Chromebook with iPads available in some fashion for supplemental use.  Someone really needs to slam a Chromebook and an iPad together so that everyone gets each operating system and all the functionality.  Then the perfect device would exist.  Wait it does, kind of!

Thursday, February 21, 2013

It's Not What I Know, It's What The Teacher Knows

When I coach football, we always talk about "It's not what the coaches know, it's what the athletes know."

I think the same holds very true when formulating a plan to integrate technology into a teachers classroom content.

I have really grown to like using flowcharts for deciding when and how the technology is integrated.  Creating boxes with concepts and tools along with dates and responsibilities creates a seamless educational environment that the teacher can understand.

This is a flow chart which demonstrates the final creation of a two week unit which provides research for a symposium that the students will conduct.  SEE ENTIRE PROBLEM BASED INFORMATION

After discussing the information, the teacher and I determined the best process for the students to create and share.

See the pictures of the end product!  (Always take pictures with your iPad!)
The red writing is the expected dates.  The green writing is the process and tool. (some computer/some iPad). The Blue initial is the the responsibility.  Who is going to complete what!

The last aspect is the use of a Google Form to collect all of the creations from the students. VIEW IT!  As a #techcoach I always enjoy showing how to make a form, but actually creating the form.  This is an easy way for me to take some work from the teacher while still having them understand the concept.  Eventually, I will have them create it.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

World History Apps In App Store

American History Apps In App Store

Found 22 American History apps in the Apple App Store.  Maybe one of them could be used in your classroom to solidify, supplement, or enhance a concept.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Web Timer Chrome Extension...In 20 Seconds

Get the Web Timer Extension

Lunch N' Learn Trailer Using Intro Designer App

A great app that will enhance any iMovie production on the iPad is the Intro Designer app.  It creates a variety of stunning video clips that can stand alone or be included in an iMovie production.  Below is the :11 second intro that teachers may watch when deciding to attend Lunch N' Learn.

See a video tutorial on the features of Intro Designer:

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Draw & Show Plus Explain Everything To Make Common Craft Videos of History of Psychology

Mr. Krause's students created Common Craft videos using the iPad in a different class with different subject matter earlier in the year.  Applying that experience, students in his Psychology class were able to discover and master the "History of Psychology" information while creating videos.

Discover how he changed from lecture format to engaging student driven discovery while using the iPads.

Study Blue For Properties of Quadrilaterals

Mrs. Gulan and Mr. Kinate used the StudyBlue iPad app today to help master the Properties of a Quadrilateral.

View the process complete with one student reaction and a terrific "Directions Page"

You may be interested in how we used StudyBlue in Science or as a Semester Exam Review Tool.

Check IP Address...In 20 Seconds

I needed some tech help from our amazing tech department.  They needed my IP address.  There are two ways to do this.

On a computer (Also Works On iPad):

On a wireless network on an iPad:

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Haiku Deck For Essential Elements of Life

I had created a Haiku Deck presentation for our Lunch N' Learn and "A Blog To Make A Blog".

Today, in Mr. Lenz' class of Physical Science or Lab Science was our first setting for using Haiku Deck with students!  The teacher wanted the students to investigate "Essential Elements of Life" found on the periodic table.  We provided the students with a Google Drawing that organized their information into six slides.  Students completed research for these six slides and then placed important information on the Haiku Deck.

Positives of Haiku Deck:

  • Stunning graphics
  • Copyright free images related to words on slides
  • Limits words on slides 
  • Forces students to focus words to provide information
  • Pictures say a thousand words
Negative of Haiku Deck:
  • Accounts needed to view final products
  • We created a classroom account
We used the gradual release method of teaching.  As a techcoach, I provided insight into the use of the tech tool the first two class periods.  During the third class period, the teacher demonstrated how the app worked.  I was in the classroom for tech support, but wasn't needed.  

We created a Google Form to collect the link that is provided by the final product of the Haiku Deck.

View the process and insight from the students on what they enjoyed about Haiku Deck.

Failure Becomes A Good Story

The recent interview with CEO Phil Libin from Evernote provided some great insight into failure!  It wasn't until the 6:00 minute mark of a 7:44 interview that a blog post was born.

Mr. Libin explained:
"What's holding back entrepreneur in other countries is that they have a much less healthy attitude toward failure. It is seen as a much more permanent thing.  One of the great things America does right is we kinda celebrate it.  Failure becomes a good story.  As long as you haven't failed for something stupid.  As long as you've learned something and can demonstrate what you learned.  It's kinda celebrated.  It's healthy."

If I would have turned it off while he was talking about the design and where the company was going, I wouldn't have heard these powerful words.

So many times in education, whether it be from internal or external forces, we are taught that "failure is not an option."  In actuality, Mr. Libin's comments resonate that it is an option, as long as "it's not for something stupid."

Can we as parents and students, educators and administrators, accept this concept of failing?  Failing to the point where it drives us to learn something with a greater intent, create a better product, collaborate more openly, think more critically, and be more creative. This will push all of us to move past the failure into success.

Head Coach Bill Self recently stated after a loss by his basketball team that they were "the worst team ever at Kansas"


Last night, they demolished their instate opponent, Kansas State!  Coach Self stated, "We have been so bad for about a week, but the guys showed up (tonight)."


Please allow your son/daughter, student, colleague, or yourself some failure.  Let's not "beat each other up or ourselves" for failure.  Let's not accelerate to "Defcon 5" Let's determine the path that will be needed to get back to success.  Let's celebrate it!

As long as it's not for stupid stuff.

Five +1 Creating iPad Apps To Fight Winter Blues!

Color Effects Free

Animator Free Free

Halftone $0.99, VPP: $0.49

TXT Pics HD $0.99

InstaStory HD $0.99

Comic Life $4.99, VPP: $2.49

Friday, February 8, 2013

Google Drive Create Button Changes...In 20 Seconds

As of yesterday, Google has improved the "Create" button in Google Drive for the computer.
See how it will look and the new options available...In 20 Seconds

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Sound Cloud For 1920 Radio Spot

Simply Phenomenal!

Some of the social studies teachers, Mr. Krause, Mrs. McCumber, and Miss Wilcox wanted a tool to help record 1920 radio shows.  Students were to write a script which was derived through research on topics that were presented to the students.

Initially the teachers were going to use Audio Memo to record the radio spots and then upload them to Google Drive.  While the free version allows for recording, it does not allow for uploading to Google Drive.

I suggested SoundCloud as another alternative because I felt that the iPad app was quite user friendly, and I liked how all the radio spots were placed into one website type page.  Teachers created classroom accounts.  Since the free version only allows for 120 minutes of recording, teachers used Gmail accounts to create SoundCloud accounts based on class hours.  After the class hour, teachers changed the passwords to the class accounts.

We were also able to meet standard number 1 of our ITLS standards as it was a new digital creation.

Some fantastic radio spots were created:

View the process, read the details and rubric, hear the teachers talk about how great the process was, and consider using it for your next project.

Research Tools Some Google, Some Not!

Google search is always there, but there are five other & additional options that you may want to consider for your students.
A Google A Day  Consider starting a research project with a Google A Day



8th Grade Scheduling Open House

While parents & students waited for our annual 8th grade scheduling open house we decided to show "What's Happening At Pulaski High School?" The movie was created entirely on the iPad with the iPad Camera, Skitch, and iMovie.

While it was a great method for showcasing the great happenings at our school, it was also an opportunity to capture all the events that take place in one hour at Pulaski High School.

While the 2 1/2 hour event took place, parents were able to ask teachers about electives and the differences in courses offered next year.  The entire movie was created on the iPad.  See how the evening progressed!

Monday, February 4, 2013

Google Sites Template Choice For Cancer Project

A few weeks ago I was approached by our science department for assistance with students making websites.  From this we developed a plan to have students create a rough draft of five slides using Google Draw.  These five slides transferred information to a five page website.

To develop some consistency with the sites, I created five templates that would have the basics but allow for some creativity.

Five Templates Looked like this

The classroom teacher presented the introductory video which I created in their classroom prior to moving to the library.  This allowed for students to enter the library and get right to the sites section of Google.
See the video:

The students working looked like this:

Overall, this process was seamless!  Students were given a taste of how a website operates without all the frustration.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Audio Memo and Google Drive

Audio Memo could be a viable option for recording voice only productions with students.  The real benefit of this (paid) app is the integration options with Google Drive.

View the process.

On a side note, because this is a paid app and the free app only allows sharing via email, we have chosen to set up classroom accounts using This is a free option which allows for recording & uploading via the iPad app.  See/Hear example

More to come on that when implemented with students next week.

Introducing Google Voice To Students

After much planning, Mr. Rodal introduced the steps for students to use Google Voice to respond to a final reflection question from a web quest.

How could I use Google Voice?
View how the students were introduced to Google Voice.

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