Sunday, 30 September 2012

The Google Teacher Academy in New York #1: What does Google New York look like?



Submitted by Fiona Beal
In a few days time (on the 3rd and 4th October) 50+ excited educators from the United States, Mexico, Canada, Colombia, the Czech Republic and South Africa (that’s me) will be descending on New York to attend the Google Teacher Academy New York 2012. These educators have been selected from the hundreds of applications from around the world, so undoubtedly many interested folk will be following the #GTANY Twitter hashtag to get a glimpse of the proceedings.


I love the way Linda Yollis one of the successful applicants from Los Angeles,  has involved her Grades 2&3 class in getting ready for the Google Teacher Academy. Take a look at her blogpost:
http://yollisclassblog.blogspot.com/2012/09/the-google-teacher-academy-in-nyc.html
We have been told by Google, “We are working hard to prepare everything to create an inspiring couple of days for you next week in New York, and we can't wait to meet all of you. Your heads are gonna spin with all the great experiences we have in store for you. Get ready!
We have also been told, ‘We are finalizing a bunch of great activities with a completely revamped agenda from previous academies, and we are so excited to share it all with you next week!
Can you wonder that we are excited!

What does Google New York look like?
On hearing of my selection for the Academy, my first question was (after I had got over all the excitement at being selected) – 'Whereabouts is Google in New York, and what does it look like?' In my Internet search to answer these questions  I came across two videos, one posted in February 2012 and one posted in 2009 when Google first opened its new New York offices. 
Here is the 2009 video entitled 'Inside Google's New York Office'.  




Here is the latest video published by The Wall Street Journal, entitled 'An Inside look at Google’s New York Offices'. 



Keep watching this space and we will bring you more news of the Academy.

Wednesday, 19 September 2012

A South African educator heads off to the Google Teacher Academy in New York next month

Submitted by Fiona Beal
The Google Teacher Academy is not really all that well known in South Africa yet, but in countries like the USA, Britain and Australia, teachers who are interested in integrating the curriculum with technology clamour to attend. Just as Microsoft has its popular products and free tools, Google provides very useful programs such as Blogger blogs, Google Forms, Google Chrome with its huge selection of extensions designed to make browsing a dream, and Google Reader as a place to read all the blogs you follow - to name but a few.

So recently, when Google announced their next Teacher Academy in New York I decided to apply so as to find out more about Google. To my delight my application was one of the 50 that were successful!  Since then I have started learning more about Google! For example I hadn’t really got to grips with Google +, but as soon as we were accepted we were joined to a Google + circle to communicate privately with one another (as well as on the Twitter hashtag #GTANY which is more public).  The next exciting thing is that we were put into groups of 6 with a leader. 

Our group leader is Lisa Thumann. The leaders also present sessions at the Academy. Lisa is from Kean University and judging by this photo in Google + she is quite entertaining. She told us that there had been 567 applications for this upcoming Academy.

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Another Google application I have recently been introduced to is a Google hangout! The seven of us had a hangout last week to get to know one other before the event and I can see that this is an amazing free future tool to use. 10 people at a time can participate in a video hangout. 

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At the hangout Lisa took a snapshot whilst one of the group was sharing information so here it is (thank goodness I wasn’t speaking at the time…)

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So once I am back on October 8th I’ll keep you posted in case you would also like to apply for a Google Teacher Academy and experience the rich community and inspiration that accompanies an event like this. Our SchoolNet webmaster has posted a Google press release on our website in case you would like to view it and find out more. http://www.schoolnet.org.za/.

Please tune in to our exciting guest webinar on Thursday from 6-6:30pm

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Details
Three superb short presentations on 'Learn the news',  'Brainpop' and "Prezi' presented by Mary Lou Berndt, a teacher in East London on Thursday from 6pm till 6:30pm.

Background
Last week I had the privilege of attending the first TeachMeet in the Eastern Cape which was co-hosted by Stirling Primary School and Clarendon Primary School in East London, but held at Stirling Primary this time round. The two enthusiastic teacher organisers were Claire Dean from Stirling Primary and Sharon Cox from Clarendon Primary. A full blog report will appear soon.  It was marvelous to see how much the East London teachers had to share with one another.

One of the presenters, Mary Lou Berndt shared three lovely presentations on Learn the News, Brainpop, and Prezi. I have asked Mary Lou to present these at our next guest webinar this Thursday, so please do pop in and listen. You won’t be disappointed! Here are the details. (Just click on the URL, and sign in as guest with your name.) This webinar will be recorded.

Join us on Thursday
Meeting Name: Learn about 'Learn the News','Prezi' and 'Brainpop'
Summary: These were three superb presentations given at the East London TeachMeet on Thurs 11th September by Mary Lou Berndt. Learn about 'Learn the news' (a great programme for your students to find out about the news), how to make a 'Prezi' and an amazing site called 'Brainpop'.
When: 09/20/2012 6:00 PM - 6:30 PM
Time Zone: (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria
To join the webinar:
http://meet78641452.adobeconnect.com/marylou/

Note
If you have never attended an Adobe Connect webinar before:
a) Test your connection: http://meet78641452.adobeconnect.com/common/help/en/support/meeting_test.htm

b) Get a quick overview:
http://www.adobe.com/go/connectpro_overview

We really hope that we will meet you there on Thursday.

Books donation for a primary school in South Africa plus an opportunity to collaborate…


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Recently we had a very interesting email from a teacher in Seattle who is a librarian at her school. She would like to donate some books to a school in South Africa and also set up a Skype collaboration with a teacher at this school. Here is an extract from the email… 

“We have 5-6 boxes of brand new paperback picture and chapter books sitting in our school that are not being used. I have a dream of putting them in the hands of an impoverished school where need a library or need books. I’d love to hook up with a school and begin a Skype collaboration if possible. We could make videos of the books or introduce ourselves with our school. Somehow I’d like to bring technology, books, global collaboration together in a project that helps children who need the help.


The stereotype of country African schools are ones of extreme need. I don’t really know if this is true or not. People think we all drive expensive cars and have all things perfect here in the States. Neither myths are true!


I have seen websites of helping African villages with books, but I am very wary of them due to the administrative costs, etc. I’m more interested in doing something small, but that has real impact. Is there a place for this kind of idea? Do you know people I could contact to start? Is this something you might be interested in?” 


If you know of a school where this would go down well, please contact fiona@schoolnet.org.za

If you would like to read this teacher's blog, here is the URL: http://bellbulldogreaders.edublogs.org/  This blog came second in the 2011 Edublogs Awards. 

Congratulations to our Adobe Youth Voices project winners!


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Recently we asked our SchoolNet premium members to vote for the Adobe Youth Voices media project they thought was the best.  (http://schoolnetsa.blogspot.com/2012/09/south-african-teachersplease-help.html) We had 39 people vote and this is a great gesture of commitment as it was no small feat to download and watch all the projects. What a dedicated team of premium members we have!! Here are the results:

Winner
Title: Rise of Racism and Hazardous Stereotyping
Educator: Maropeng TL Monareng
Prize: wins trip to Cape Town; registration for ESN conference; accommodation, meals & flip video camera
Votes: 11




Second place
Title: Water is Life - use me wisely
Educator:  Cynthia Lukhele
Prize: Cynthia wins second prize (flip camera); and five learners win digital cameras
Votes: 9




Third prize
Title: Bullying
Educator: Saul Pila
Prize: Saul wins a flip camera

Votes: 6

 

Complete spreadsheet of results

If you would like to see the complete spreadsheet of results please view theme here.
Adobe Youth Voices 2012 voting results 

Want to join the new intake of the project?

If you would like to be involved in the new intake of 12 teachers for the current year please email omashani@schoolnet.org.za TODAY! You won’t regret it! More details are available on this blogpost http://schoolnetsa.blogspot.com/2012/09/adobe-youth-voices-in-south.html


 

Monday, 17 September 2012

30 Days of Webtools #27: Discover the benefits of YouTube in the classroom

Recently I have become very aware of the benefits of YouTube for an educator. There are amazing resources for the classroom - one can so easily start making a collection of useful clips that can add spice to your daily lessons.

Here are some ideas:

1. Chop videos using TubeChop
(http://www.tubechop.com/)



Using TubeChop you can cut interesting bits out of a YouTube video and keep the link. (If you wanted to download it you would probaby have to use Screencastomatic to record the clip)
 
2. Use KeepVid to download YouTube movies
 (http://keepvid.com/)
 
KeepVid is amazing for downloading a movie as an MP4 and then renaming it and storing it on your computer. You could go the extra step and use Windows Movie maker to chop the piece that you particularly like and store that clip on your computer.

3. Make your own instructional videos with TED (http://ed.ted.com/videos)


TED has a great service for educators where you can make a video using online material and create a lesson around it.  This is very useful for the flipped classroom approach. 


4. Create a free SchoolTube channel or TeacherTube channel


If you create videos with your class, either a School Tube or Teacher Tube channel will be a great way to you to store all your videos in one online location for easy access.

So, the above-mentioned applications provide just a few ways that you can make YouTube a great classroom resource. Please take a look through the Slideshare below for more detail. Perhaps you know of even more applications or ideas that you can share with us?


Monday, 10 September 2012

A report back on a fantastic TeachMeet held at Somerset House on 29th August 2012


Submitted by Fiona Beal
On Wednesday 29th August at 6pm I made my way to the Helderberg Basin’s second TeachMeet. This was held at the beautiful Cape Dutch style school  Somerset House in Somerset West and I knew I was in for a treat. If you as a teacher have never been to a TeachMeet, please consider it – you come away inspired and enthusiastic and you just want to try EVERYHING that was recommended. 

Teachers appeared from all around Somerset West, ready for an engaging evening. Somerset House always provide a light supper of soup and rolls before the event so that everyone can start networking straight away. So, let me tell how the evening transpired. First of all Siobhan Lowe, the enthusiastic ITC teacher at Somerset Huse welcomed everybody and explained how a TeachMeet works. 

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We used the Class Tools random name selector to choose the speakers at random.
http://www.classtools.net/education-games-php/fruit_machine. This always brings an element of fun to the evening.
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1)
The use of BYOD at Somerset House


Somerset House is a private primary school which has recently embarked on a BYOD (Bring your own device) pilot for technology. The principal, Chris Storey, was very excited about how successfully the pilot is progressing and gave us a report back at the TeachMeet. The BYOD approach is being used at some High Schools around South Africa, but Chris didn’t know of any primary schools to date that are trying this out. The parents and students at the school have responded very favourably to this approach, and there are some interesting plans afoot to make it work even more successfully in 2013. 


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Chris Storey also showed a motivational YouTube video called ‘Engage Me’ where pupils from Robin Hood Primary School, Birmingham, worked with a film crew from the National College for School Leadership to express their desire to use their favourite technologies for learning in school. 



2) KeepVid is a marvelous way to download and store useful video clips

Barbara Brear, the librarian at Somerset House, showed us how she uses KeepVid to download YouTube videos for easier viewing, and then she renames them and organises them for easy access. This was a very helpful, practical session. Barbara also proudly showed her latest Grade 4 History projects where there was no evidence of any plagiarim or copy and paste. At Somerset House the students do their projects at school tduring school time.

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3) A groupwork lesson on creating an edible version of a plant or animal cell

This presentation was given by Debbie Underwood of Somerset College where she showed the steps of her group lesson on creating an edible version of a plant or animal cell. She played ‘The Biology Song’ which she ad discovered on the Internet, and showed some of the results of the lesson. What a great way to learn about cells!



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4) Flippin’ Verbs – using the Flipped Classroom approach

Jenny Martin from Somerset West showed her new way of teaching verbs using the flipped classroom approach. She was amazed at how quickly her students learned and recalled everything about verbs very effectively in one week – something that had taken so much longer using her previous approach. Jenny used Symbaloo, PowerPoint and Popplet among other web tools and the students had to create multimedia presentations to explain verbs. The results were‘verbilicious’. Jenny even interviewed her students who told us that they much preferred this way of learning.

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3) Make a weather map using ICT as a resource

This was a Grade 3 Life Skills lesson presented by Karen Bind of Somerset House.

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Karen's class learned about weather at the time of the London Olympics so she was able to bring in useful UK information that interested the learners. For example she introduced the lesson using a BBC weather game: http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/barnabybear/games/weather_report.shtml

Karen was also able to show Prince Charles giving the weather forecast when introducing the section on giving a report back! This was such a fun lesson and I am sure Karen’s students presented great weather reports as a result of it. 

4) Teaching the short story

Michelle Botha is the new Head of Department at Somerset House and demonstrated a lesson she had used at her previous school on teaching the short story using various multimedia. Her students had really enjoyed this lesson and had easily grasped the elements of writing a story especially from a song that Michelle used.

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5) Using QR codes in the classroom

Michelle also demonstrated how she uses QR codes effectively at school. She gave a very good summary of the steps on how to get started, but unfortunately I don’t have access to her presentation. 


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6) Use Mybrainshark to give voice to your PowerPoints online and create lovely videos

Fiona Beal from SchoolNet talked about her latest find MyBrainshark from http://mbrainshark.com. With this tool you can create the most amazing multimedia videos that contain one or more of the following – Powerpoints, Word and Excel documents, videos, JPEGS etc . You can include voice over and narration. This is a great tool for student projects and also for flipped classroom scenarios. 

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7) Twitter, #edchatsa and SchoolnetSA

Siobhan Lowe from Somerset House spoke about three different things:

a) The benefits of using Twitter as a teacher for professional growth

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b) The value of joining in the Monday night #edchatsa discussion on Twitter from 8:30pm – 9:30pm.

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c) The value of becoming a SchoolNet premium member.

Siobhan said she really feels that SchoolNet has mentored her over the past year and a half, and she urged the teachers present to join as premium members (a free membership) and experience the same benefits. Since I am from SchoolNet this was very encouraging to hear! So if you are reading this please just go to the Schoolnet site http://www.schoolnet.org.za/ and select ‘Sign up for SchoolNet membership’. We’d love it if you joined us!

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What I loved about the TeachMeet was seeing how teachers are combining good pedagogy with multimedia for a really great classroom experience. 

Well, all too soon it was time to go, but this was an evening well spent among enthusiastic teachers who want to make a difference in education in South Africa. We really thank Somerset House (and Siobhan Lowe) for hosting this inspiring evening and hope they will be hosting more of these in the future. 

Record of tweets at the event 
If you would like to see a record of the tweets for the hashtag #SHttwt from the evening I captured them using Storify.com.  You can view them at this URL:
http://storify.com/fibeal/somerset-house-teachmeet-on-weds-29-august-2012#publicize

South African teachers–please help SchoolNet choose the best AYV submission


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 Please help SchoolNet vote for the best media project


If you are a South African teacher we invite you to consider assisting SchoolNet with judging the best Adobe Youth Voices media project for 2012? The teachers who were selected into the project worked with their students to create a film that give a voice to youth concerns. The film that is chosen by our premium members as the best media project carries with it a WONDERFUL prize for the teacher who has been responsible for the project at his/her school. That teacher will be flown to Cape Town to accompany Omashani Naidoo from SchoolNet (who oversees Adobe Youth Voices in South Africa) to the e-Schools ICT Conference from 2- 4th October at Wynberg Girls High School. The prize includes airfare, accommodation and all accompanying costs. A handsome prize, don't you think?

So please will you assist us by choosing the best media project by watching the 7 short videos mentioned below and selecting the best one. Thereafter open the Google Form which repeats the information in this email but also has a section for you to fill in and say why you think your choice is the best media project. (This is the only criteria for judging).Press SUBMIT when you are done and we will receive the results. Thank you so much for helping us with this - we appreciate your support. The closing date for voting is Wednesday 12th September 2012. (And by the way, if you would like to enter the next AYV project which starts soon please contact Omashani at omashani@schoolnet.org.za

Join SchoolNet as a premium member

This judging is for SchoolNet premium members, a free membership for South African teachers, so if you are not already a member please just go to our website http;//schoolnet.org.za and look for ‘Sign up for SchoolNet membership’ at the top of the page. Thereafter just follow the prompts.

Here are the videos with their links:






The Rise of Racism and Hazardous Stereotyping in South Africa
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IkddFbwAWok&feature=youtu.be

Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Adobe Youth Voices in South Africa–teachers, you have to join this amazing project!


Submitted by Omashani Naidoo from SchoolNet

 What is the Adobe Youth Voices project?  

Adobe Youth Voices (AYV) engages talented educators of intermediate and high school age youth in a year-long professional development and support program. Educators enhance their teaching strategies, gain new skills, and collaborate with like-minded educators and youth media experts to enable young people to express themselves using digital tools and to create media with a personally meaningful purpose. Educators from participating sites join a global network to exhibit and share youth-created media projects, including videos, documentaries, photojournalism, animations, websites and multimedia. The International Education and Resource Network (iEARN) joined the Adobe Youth Voices program as a founding partner in 2006, and now manages and supports the program in over 16 countries around the world. South Africa has participated in the AYV programme for the past three years.

The AYV programme contains two phases:
a) AYV eight week online course for teachers
b) Media projects for students requiring media projects with social messages to be completed

The Adobe Youth Voices (AYV) Online course 

 

The Adobe Youth Voices (AYV) online course is designed to introduce educators to the Adobe Youth Voices program; and to help educators to more effectively support youth in making media. During the eight week course, educators build their knowledge and skills to create media with young people. One activity per week of the eight week course is posted; however, if educators experience challenges during the allotted week, then some leeway is allowed for late submission. Activities are focused on topics such as media forms and formats; process, product and presentation; community collaboration and exhibition; and technical skills necessary to use Adobe media making software. 


Participating in an online course makes it necessary for a trusting rapport to be created amongst peers; educators are thus encouraged to actively respond to questions and review peer activities. Throughout the course, two experienced online facilitators provide guidance and support to course participants. By the end of this course, participants are sufficiently skilled to provide similar support to guide young students in their schools to create media with purpose.

For the past three years, AYV has sponsored twelve South African educators to participate in this global project. In 2012, a concerted effort was made to find educators in and around the Gauteng province to participate in the programme, providing opportunities for contact workshops and greater interaction among course participants.

The 2102 participants

Here are some of our 2012 participants

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From Left: Paballo , Molifi, Lindiwe, Cynthia, Omashani, Saul & Faith


All educators were invited to a contact workshop in March 2012 and were asked to bring artefacts of their students’ media projects. This would allow participants to peer-review work as well address any questions around techniques for improving the various media projects.

The workshop was well received and arrived timeously as educators were grappling with software challenges and working with learners during examinations and holidays. The group was able to brainstorm ways to work around challenges and Mr Paballo Diboke, from the Intel Clubhouse volunteered to be the support person for technical questions on the Adobe Premiere Elements and Photoshop Software. 

Completing a Media Project

All participating educators were encouraged to submit at least one completed media project during the 2012 AYV programme. . The following are brief project descriptions and links to the projects received:
· Bullying...submitted by Mr Saul Pila (Gauteng Department of Education-Gauteng)
This project highlights bullying in schools. Student and educator interviews help deal with this issue 

· Water is life... use me wisely! submitted by Cynthia Lukhele (Ivory Park High School- Gauteng)
This project highlights the need for all citizens to be water wise

· The Power of a Woman submitted by Cynthia Lukhele (Ivory Park High School- Gauteng) This photostory pays tribute to a wonderful teacher, who consistently ‘goes the extra mile’ to motivate her students to remain committed in everything they do.

· Hold on… submitted by Cynthia Lukhele (Ivory Park High School- Gauteng)
This music video and song was compiled by Wynand Monyeseala and performed by Precious Zulu

· Dance is my Language submitted by Cynthia Lukhele (Ivory Park High School- Gauteng) This video displays kwaito dance and the language of dance as interpreted by students at Ivory Park High School

· South African Heritage submitted by Cynthia Lukhele (Ivory Park High School- Gauteng)
This video focuses on the different cultural dress and traditions of people living in South Africa

· You can make it... submitted by Lindiwe D Zulu (Eqinisweni Secondary School- Gauteng)
This photostory was designed to motivate and encourage youth to understand that despite difficulties, there is always hope.

· The Rise of Racism and Hazardous Stereotyping submitted by Tebogo Monareng (Bokomaso Senior Secondary School-Limpopo)
Racism and Sterotyping is found in all countries and South Africa is no different. The students of Bokamaso Secondary use this video to discuss and understand this deep rooted issue and find ways to overcome them.

Join us for the next AYV intake? Apply now

Although our teachers did not make the deadline to be showcased at the International Adobe Youth Voices Festival, they have done amazing work with their learners and we are extremely proud of them. SchoolNet SA looks forward to a new cohort of teachers and learners participating in the 2012-2013 programme. Will you join us? (Contact omashani@schoolnet.org.za)

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

30 Days of webtools: #26 Use Slideshare to share online PowerPoints


Slideshare (http://www.slideshare.net/) is one of my favourite free programmes. It is a way of easily presenting information online.  It could be really useful if you have a classroom blog or wiki because you could upload all sorts of different information for your class to access at home.  It is also a way for your students to present their information online if they are collaborating with another class. 

Basically, with Slideshare you can upload and share (publicly or privately) PowerPoints or PDFs for online viewing. Slideshare says you can also upload Word Documents but I haven’t tried that yet! To date I mainly use SlideShare for uploading PowerPoints and PDFs that I want to share with others. I see now that file formats that are supported by Slideshare are ppt, pps, pot, pptx, ppsx, potx, OpenOffice, and Keynote. Document formats supported are PDF, Microsoft Word, Excel sheets, OpenOffice files and text files. The maxmum allowed file size is 100 MB. There you have it! I see you can also create Slidecasts using voice but I haven't tried that yet!


SchoolNet’s Slideshare account

To show you what a Slideshare looks like I have given the links to Schoolnet’s Slideshare accounts.  Every time you make a presentation and upload it to your account, your account keeps a record of it. This account tells you a lot about your SlideShares – how many you have uploaded, who is following you, how many downloads and embeds have been made by others etc.


http://www.slideshare.net/Schoolnetsa11
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How to join Slideshare and create a Slideshare presentation

There is a really good video from Teacher Tube called 'Slideshare for teachers'  that seems to give a good explanation about Slideshare. It gives an error message when I embed it, so let me rather give the link.. It can be accessed at: http://teachertube.com/viewVideo.php?video_id=100970&title=Slideshare_for_Teachers

Before you start you need to create a PowerPoint presentation on your topic offline. This can then be converted to a PDF OR it can be uploaded just as it is to SlideShare. I also found this tutorial on YouTube giving a step-by-step approach but haven’t had a chance to evaluate it properly yet.



Why use Slideshare?
I found this Slideshare in Slideshare giving some tips on how it can be used! It lists some exciting uses that I confess I haven't yet tried - but will in the future!



Using Slideshare to include videos

There are many ways to use Slideshare that I haven’t explored yet. One of the things I HAVE used though is combining videos with a SlideShare. This works really well.  In fact, I absolutely LOVE this feature of Slideshare where you can embed YouTube videos within Slideshare instead of having a string of them one under the other on your blog page. One of the ways I did this was to gather a collection of Google tutorials - 12 videos - to see if adding a large amount of videos would work. Well, it was a lengthy affair because I first got all the URLS incorrect. You have to use the URL that shows under the video after clicking on 'Share'. Two of the videos would just not take! So, instead of redoing the whole thing and replacing my Slideshare, I thought that I would post it for now...so you could see the problem that occurs when adding the wrong URL.

http://www.slideshare.net/fionabeal/all-things-google-a-collection-of-tutorials


Uses of SlideShare for teachers

1. Have you ever plugged your flash drive into a laptop, opened a PowerPoint presentation and it doesn't work? Have your students ever done the same thing and then been relieved that they can get out of presenting? Well, if your PowerPoint is uploaded to Slideshare you’ll never have that problem! Before I give a Conference presentation or do a workshop at a school I upload the PowerPoint to Slideshare and then refer everyone to it afterwards in case they would like to have access to it.
2. Have you ever wanted to embed your PowerPoint slides on a wiki to share with students and parents? You can do that so easily with Slideshare.

3. You could have your lesson planned and outlined on Slideshare and as you go through it your video clips and even your Screencasts (if it was a technology linked lesson) could be right there. If this was placed on your classroom blog the students could access it that evening to review.

4. Your students can use this site to communicate with different audiences around the world.  Slideshare allows students to share their work, view other students’ work and make comments.

5. The Slideshare site is a treasure chest of resources for teachers to use since presentations on many different topics can be found using their search feature. There is an Education category in Slideshare where you can view the most popular shared education slideshares.

6. This is an interesting Slideshare shown below. (It is actually given on Authorstream which is another way of presenting PowerPoints but it allows voice in its paid version). This teacher is setting a Slideshare presentation task to his students using his voice as well. Take a listen.

Slideshare Lesson Final Draft




Try opening a Slideshare account and upload a PowerPoint or a different type of document to it to see what happens!  I am sure you'll start to love using Slideshare.
*Please share your link with me!

Saturday, 1 September 2012

30 Days of webtools: #25 Create a Prezi



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What is a Prezi?

Prezi is another presentation tool that is fascinating to use.You will find Prezi at http://prezi.com. It is a zooming digital presentation editor that holds the attention of students possibly more than would a PowerPoint.  (Last week I attended a primary school ‘Technology Show’ at Micklefield Primary – totally amazing! One grade demonstrated the use of Prezi and their comment was that they think ALL the teachers should use Prezi!) With Prezi you can type text, embed pictures, and insert video in very creative ways! I doubt if anyone would fall asleep during a Prezi demonstration!.  Because it's web based, Prezi can be created and shown on any computer with web access. If there is no web access available during your presentation, a downloadable version can be obtained to show offline anywhere. No other software is needed, not even flash!


How does Prezi compare to PowerPoint?


Prezi differs from PowerPoint in that it is a web-based program that allows you to create more of a canvas presentation instead of a sequential slide presentation. You have to think non-linear! It allows you to incorporate text and pictures,  videos and other presentation objects which is what PowerPoint does as well. You can create your presentation online and then download the final product so that you don’t require an internet connection to display the presentation.

Examples of prezis

This example is from Martin Burrett in England who presented his TeachMeet presentation on useful classroom tools using a Prezi.



Where does one start?

1. 
Get to know Prezi terminology



2. Let’s start by viewing a step by step tutorial on YouTube

http://youtu.be/MAloWJiCQ-o


3. If you find you learn best from videos there’s a lovely site called ‘Undertenminutes’ and he has two excellent  videos on how he introduced Prezi at his school.
http://www.undertenminutes.com/?p=173


What else can you do with a Prezi?

You can download your completed as a PDF. Use the “Print” option in the middle of the editor screen to create handouts for your audience. In PreziDesktop, there is a "print" option in your window menu bar as well under “File”. When you click Print, your prezi will be converted to a PDF document, where every path step will be one document page. The exported PDF will also include an overview page of your whole prezi.


Classroom ideas

1. This Prezi puts forward a case for using Prezi. I like the way he adds YouTube videos in his Prezi.




2. Make a group presentation on a project.

3. Prezi could be used as a getting to know you tool. Students could write their first name and tell us about themselves and their family. There are numerous charts (timelines, flow charts, etc.) that could be utilized in the content areas as well.”

4. Here is a Prezi giving some thoughts on using Prezi as a teaching tool.
http://prezi.com/rfsnedhqmhqa/thoughts-on-using-prezi-as-a-teaching-tool/


5. This is a presentation in Google Docs showing 17 interesting ways of using Prezi in the classroom. Unfortunately this doesn't give an embed code, but just click on the link to get to the original. 
https://docs.google.com/present/view?id=dhn2vcv5_238djxmbfhd

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6. Other ways to use Prezi
a) Zoom into details of a picture
b) A way of embedding a number of relevant YouTube videos
c) You could build up a Prezi over the duration of a topic
d) Use a Prezi as a mind map
e) You could us a Prezi to learn vocabulary
f) You could use a  Prezi to share information in a global class project


Optional task

Make a Prezi and share the link with me
 
Further Reading
1. http://www.emergingedtech.com/2012/01/teachers-recommendations-for-academic-uses-of-5-fun-free-presentation-tools/

2. http://www.freetech4teachers.com/2009/02/prezi.html#.UDlh9NbiZSg
3. Here are some prezis that one could re-use and just add one’s own information. http://prezi.com/learn/selection-great-reusable-prezis/
4. http://techcrunch.com/2009/04/20/prezi-is-the-coolest-online-presentation-tool-ive-ever-seen/
5. http://prezi.com/ystpnaz3oiom/copy-of-techguru-project/