Thursday, July 29, 2010

How to Choose a Safe Password

How to Choose a Safe Password is an educational video produced by Animated Explanations. The video does a nice job of explaining the common mistakes people make in choosing passwords for their online accounts. The video then walks viewers through how to create a strong passwords for their online accounts. The video is embedded below.

How to choose a safe password - Animated Explanations

Why Pay for a Free Video?

Yesterday, I wrote a post about the three Common Craft videos that should be in every technology integrator's training library. In that post I mentioned that if you're using the videos you should probably pony-up the money for the licensing (it's cheap). I've gotten a couple of emails this morning asking why should someone buy the video when it can be viewed for free online. I wrote about that question last fall so rather than rehashing it, I've included that post below.

A couple of days ago I Tweeted that I was buying a copy of Common Craft's video Wikis in Plain English. The fact that I bought anything may come as a shock to some readers. After all, this is Free Technology for Teachers and you can watch all of the Common Craft videos for free at various places on the Internet. So why did I purchase Wikis in Plain English? I purchased a copy of it because I will be conducting some workshops over the next few months in which Wikis in Plain English will be useful. Since I will be getting paid for those workshops, using the free version of the Common Craft videos would not be right. Put another way, Lee and Sachi put a lot of their time and effort into the production of their videos, for me to profit from their work without paying for that work would be like stealing. Therefore, I bought a copy of Wikis in Plain English and will purchase other videos from Common Craft as needed. Unfortunately, there are a lot of people that haven't come to the same conclusion that I have and have abused the work of Lee and Sachi Lefever. Because of those abuses, the newest Common Craft video is not embeddable although you can still view it for free on Common Craft.

I know this post might sound like a sales pitch for Common Craft so please know that I don't have any affiliation with or financial interest in Common Craft. I posted this just to share that even for a cheapskate like me there are times when it is appropriate to spend money for quality online content.

Update: Common Craft offers a discount to schools. Click here to get the details from them.

A Great Alternative to Traditional Book Reports

Book Trailers for Readers is a student/ teacher wiki that was recently featured on the Wikispaces blog. Book Trailers for Readers was started by Michelle Harclerode. The wiki features dozens of book previews and book reviews produced by students for students. There's also a section of book trailers featuring the books that teachers loved when they were growing-up.

Applications for Education
Creating book trailers is a great alternative to having students write boring book reports. To help you implement the book trailers concept in your classroom Michelle Harclerode has a how-to page on Book Trailers for Readers. Featured prominently on that how-to page is the presentation embedded below.

If you don't have access to or funds for video editing software, take a look at the free web-based video creation tools featured in my free guide Making Videos on the Web. While not visual, another way that you could have students create book trailers is by creating audio podcasts. Here are five free tools for creating and hosting podcasts.

Here are some related items that may be of interest to you:
60 Second Recap - Short Summaries of the Classics
Guys Read - Getting Boys to Read
Seven Places to Find Free eBooks