This is going to be the first of a series of professional learning opportunities centred around the new iPads. All staff are welcome as we will be exploring the iPads that the students use. If you have an iPad please bring it as well and any questions/puzzles/tips and tricks that you would like to share.
What another fabulous turn out for Techie Brekkie No.2 2014. Some great questions were brought along. We were able to break up into small learning groups to work out some of the questions. Here are some of the things that were covered.
Edublogs iPad App: Some people were reporting that the Edublogs Apps was being rather erratic in publishing posts. After some fiddling around it was discovered that it was better to post straight away rather than push the preview button. For some reason viewing the post on the iPad using the preview button on the Edublogs app would stop the post being published and stay as a draft.
Did you know that if you click the settings cog. That it will take you to the properties screen where you can Categorise and Tag your post. You can also set an image to be featured. Check it out.
Publishing Video and Audio files on the blog: Video files can be huge and with every blog you only get a limited amount of storage. So the best thing to do is to upload your video somewhere else and embed the video into your blog. Check the how to video below to see how to do it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TY0yKi3SOOw
Audio files are slightly different: The easiest way is to just upload your audio file (usually a .mp3 or .WAV file) and use the embed play that Global2 provides.
Another group worked on how to set up a Global 2 blog. Here is a presentation on how to do it. Click Here
The level blogs at Bell PS are looking amazing and if you take a look at the stats they are also getting plenty of people looking at them. To sustain the momentum and to ensure that we are all contributing to this wonderful insight into our curriculum and classrooms, this weeks Techie Brekkie is going to be centred around blogging at Bell PS. We will look at the Global 2 blogging platform and answer any questions that you might have. Bring your laptop and mobile device and we will go through some beginners tips and trips as well as some pro tips for those who are advanced bloggers. If you have something that you would like to share re blogging please bring that as well.
Now that term 1 is done and dusted and you have settled into life at Bell, its time to start the amazing Techie Brekkies. For those new to Bell, Techie Brekkies occur fortnightly (we may have some weekly when the iPads arrive due to demand). Attendance is optional not mandatory, however it is a great way to clock up professional learning time for your PD logs. Each session will be centred around a mini theme however, please feel free to bring along any queries that you might have to support your use of ICT at Bell. If you have anything that you would like to present or demonstrate at a Techie Brekkie that would be great.
Remember, no one person is more knowledgeable than a network of people. So the more people who come the more we can support our professional learning at Bell PS.
This weeks mini theme will be Google Drive and Docs; Tips, Tricks & How To. This is an amazing tool that supports the 21st Century Learning Skills of Communication, Collaboration, Critical Thinking and Creativity. It’s great to see so many staff and teams using it for planning etc however, are you and your students using it to support teaching and learning at Bell? Please see flyer below for details.
A lot was covered in Techie Brekkie No.6. See below.
How to embed a youtube video into your class blog.
How to embed a video from your Google Drive folder into your Global2 blog.
We also looked at using Pickmonkey and Pixlr web apps to manipulate images. You can now add apps from a select list to your Google drive apps. Having these apps connected to your Google drive means that once you have logged in to your Google Drive you can use them straight away and most of the artefacts are automatically saved into your Drive folder.
Step 1: Click Create Then Connect More Apps
Click Create Then Connect More Apps
Step 2 Choose Pixlr and or Pickmonkey
Find and choose your app
Find and choose your app
Have fun! All images will be saved into your drive or you can export them out to other places to share. Be sure to check out the Halloween features in Pickmonkey.
Term 4 Techie Brekkies are about to begin.
Techie Brekke No.5 was all about Google Forms. After looking at them in detail I had forgotten how powerful Google Forms are. The tool itself is very easy to set up.
As you can see its a fairly easy process. Which lead to some interesting conversation about its uses for teachers and students. Some examples ideas discussed: Student surveys for students to collect data for a project, mini tests for student assessment, embedding a form into your class blog to collect data from the school community or other global collaborator. “Where ever there is a form there’s a spreadsheet” and we touched lightly on Google spreadsheets and how they interact with the accompanying Google Form. One thing missing from the ‘how to’ video above is that you can now add/embedd images to your Google form. This is great for ‘tune in’ or ‘activating prior knowledge’ activities at the beginning of a project or lesson.
Our next Techie Brekkie will be on the 12 of September. There will be a focus on the Global2 blogging tool that we use for our level blogs and will cover creating effective blog rolls, embedding video, audio, calendars and much much more!
Techie Breakie No.4 was all about Google Documents. Now that we have had a chance to play around with the tool and experience the collaborative power of docs, it was now time to ‘level up’. But first there was the pressing question around using tables in Google docs. Ok, I am the first to admit… Tables don’t work as well in Docs as they do in Word. That’s one of the trade off’s when working with a web based tool. The solution? Well there isn’t one really. Its about rethinking how tables are used. So rather than nesting tables with in a table or 1 cell row on top of several columns. Table need to be rethought as separate entites. Separate Cell sitting above a three columns for example.
Being teachers we love to colour code stuff. Doing this to a table is easy just go to. The “Table” tab and then click table properties and then click cell background
Google have made sure that Doc’s aren’t syphoned off from the rest of the web. Using the research tool you can now highlight text, go to tools, click research and inside the document it will search the web for that text. This is great for citing and finding, verifying and contrasting information.
Other things that were discussed were:
Wow all this in just 45 minutes. The next Techie Breakie we will be digging deeper into some of the other Google Apps that could be used. Such as Google Forms, Drawings and Pixlar.