Wednesday, December 23, 2015

A Couple More Skitch Alternatives

Last night I posted the news that Evernote is ending support for Skitch on iOS, Android, and Windows. In that post I shared a few alternative tools that I'm going to be using. This morning I awoke to an email and some Tweets suggesting some other Skitch alternatives.

My friend Rafranz Davis and a few others suggested using FiftyThree for iOS.

Kevin O'Donnell emailed me to suggest using Nimbus Screenshot and Screencast for Chrome. I just installed this extension this morning. One of the things that I immediately liked about it is the option to save my screenshots directly to my Google Drive account.

Triventy - Create Interactive Quiz Games to Play as a Group

Triventy is a free quiz game platform that I learned about from Larry Ferlazzo earlier this month. This morning was the first time I had a chance to actually test it out.

Triventy uses a concept that will be familiar to anyone who has tried Kahoot or Quizizz. To play a Triventy quiz game the teacher projects the game questions at the front of the room and students answer the questions on their mobile devices or laptops. Points are awarded for answering correctly. Bonus points are awarded for answering quickly. Students join the quiz game by going to and entering the game pin assigned to your game.

Creating a Triventy quiz is fairly straight-forward. You start by uploading a cover image. Then you can begin adding questions to your quiz. Questions are written in multiple choice format. You have the option of not awarding points for questions by selecting "survey question." If you want to build hints and explanations for questions, Triventy has a field for that at the end of each question. Images can be uploaded for each question. You can mark your quiz as public or private. Public quizzes can be seen by other teachers who can use them and modify them within their own Triventy accounts.

Applications for Education
One of the neat features of Triventy for students is that they can ask for a hint or to have an answer choice eliminated. Students can also see an explanation of the answer to each question.

One of the drawbacks to Triventy is that there doesn't appear to be a way to save quiz results. I also didn't see a way to moderate names that students enter when they start to play a Triventy quiz game.

Reboot Your Classroom Blog in 2016

This is the time of year in which we start to look at what we want to do differently in the new calendar year. For some of us that might mean getting back to the gym or committing to another new habit like updating a blog on a regular schedule. If you want to get your classroom blog going again or you want to start an entirely new classroom blog in 2016, my Classroom Blog Jumpstart course is for you.

Besides the nuts and bolts of how blogs work, this class will teach ways to use your classroom blog that many people overlook. You'll also learn my tricks for keeping a consistent blogging schedule.

In this three part event you will learn:
*How to use Blogger and WordPress. Dive into features many people overlook.
*Determine which blogging platform is best for you and your students.
*Learn valuable strategies for engaging students and parents through blogs and social media.

This three week event is happening on January 11th, 18th, and 25th at 7pm Eastern Time.
***********All sessions are recorded.************

I usually charge $97 for a course like this one. As a New Year’s promotion it costs only $75 if you register before January 6th. Use the discount code “NewYear” to receive the discount.

1. Do I have to be there for the live webinar? 
While you'll get more out of attending the live sessions, you don't have to attend the live session. The live sessions are recorded for you to watch as many times as you like.

2. Can I get a certificate for PD hours/ license renewal hours?
Yes, but it is up to you to determine if your school/state/province will accept the hours for license renewal.

3. What do I need to participate?
A laptop/ desktop with an updated browser. Or you can use the GoToTraining mobile apps. 

Sometimes when I advertise one of these webinars I get messages from people who are upset that I am advertising it here and or that I am charging for it. I understand why some people feel that way. I thought long and hard about how to offer these opportunities. In fact, I thought about it and talked about it with trusted advisers for a year before offering the first webinar series last year. The purpose of this blog and my goal for years has always been to help people use free technology in their classrooms. The tools and strategies featured in my webinars and at the Practical Ed Tech Summer Camp are free to use. However, my time for teaching isn't free. Further, I pay licensing fees to GoToTraining and to Wistia for hosting all of the media content of the courses.

How to Send Lessons from EDpuzzle to Google Classroom

Last week EDPuzzle added a Google Classroom integration option. This new option lets you send lessons from your EDPuzzle account to your Google Classroom classes. I've had a few questions about how this works. To answer those questions I made the video that is embedded below.

If you are not familiar with EDPuzzle, it is a neat tool that allows you to add your voice and text questions to educational videos. On EDpuzzle you can search for educational videos and or upload your own videos to use as the basis of your lesson. EDpuzzle has an online classroom component that you can use to assign videos to students and track their progress through your video lessons. In the video embedded below I demonstrate how to use the main features of EDPuzzle.