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Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Telling Stories and Solving Problems With Storyboards

Last night I hosted a free webinar about using storyboards to tell stories, illustrate problems and solutions, and to summarize favorite books. The webinar was hosted by Storyboard That. The recording of the webinar is embedded below.


Storyboard That also owns the popular Photos for Class and Quick Rubric websites. At the end of the webinar we took a quick look at those tools too.

The slides used in last night's webinar are embedded below.

NEW Apple Teacher Site Offers FREE Professional Development

This is a guest post from Sabba Quidwai (@AskMsQ) of EdTechTeacher, an advertiser on this site.

Last week was a big one for Apple enthusiasts, but perhaps the best surprise was for educators with the release of the Apple Teacher program.  It’s free to sign up, and once you do, you’ll enter the Apple Teacher Learning Center where you have the opportunity to earn your badge as an official Apple Teacher.

The Learning Center has four different areas to explore.

1 - Learning Resources for Teachers

Here you will find the starter guides for both iPad and Mac.  Topics include Getting Started with the iPad/Mac, Pages, Keynote, Numbers, iMovie, Garageband, as well as Productivity and Creativity.  I particularly appreciated the fact that the resources are geared towards both beginner and proficient users. Each guide not only has a wealth of information but the interactive nature of the guide gives you an opportunity to apply everything you learn.

2- Self-Paced Learning Modules & Badges 

This is an outstanding resource for both beginners and advanced users of the iPad and Mac.  Despite having taught in a 1:1 iPad environment and being Apple Distinguished Educator, I learned so many new tips, tricks, and ideas to take back to my classroom as well as to the teachers with whom I work. There are eight modules for both the iPad and Mac that you need to complete in order to get your certification. I most enjoyed the experience of interacting with the scenario-based quiz questions.

3 - Inspiration for Teachers

You’ve mastered the apps, and you’ve earned your Apple Teacher certification, so what’s next?  This area will provide you with lots of lesson ideas and inspiration that you can use to apply everything you’ve learned to transform the teaching and learning experience in your school.  Read stories about how other teachers are using the different apps with their students and explore video exemplars. You can also stay up to date with new tips about how to use the features on your iPad and Mac.

4 - Everyone Can Code

"Everyone Should have an opportunity to change the world." -Apple

This is the driving vision behind the new coding and app development curriculum recently launched by Apple, a story beautifully told in this video.  There are two parts to this new initiative - Swift Playgrounds and App Development.  From elementary to higher ed, there is something for everyone.

Like most things that come along, these tools are only as great as we make them. As the stories from the Inspiration for Teachers section show us, iPads and Macs present an opportunity to truly reimagine what is possible.

Sabba will be sharing her stories at the November 2-4 EdTechTeacher Innovation Summit in Boston, MA. Early Bird Registration is still open.

IP Addresses Explained by Common Craft

You may have heard the techie people in your life use the term "IP address" while explaining a problem regarding your computer connecting to the Internet. And if you're like a lot of people who don't work in networking, you probably wondered what the heck an IP address is and why it matters. Common Craft, a company that specializes in explaining complex topics in simple terms, has recently tackled the question of "what is an IP address?" In the latest Common Craft video you can learn what an IP address is, how they're used when you connect to the web, and why there are two versions of IP addresses.


You can watch IP Addresses Explained by Common Craft here or as embedded above.


How to Create a Check-in/ Check-out System In Google Forms

About eighteen months ago I published a video tutorial on how to create a simple check-in/ check-out system in Google Forms. Since then Forms has been updated so it was time to record an updated tutorial. In the video embedded below I demonstrate how to create a simple check-in/ check-out system in Google Forms by using the Add-on called CheckItOut.


CheckItOut will not replace the need for a full-fledged inventory system in a school library. That said, CheckItOut could be a great option for teachers who lend items from their classroom libraries. It's also a good Add-on for people who are in charge of keeping track of iPad or laptop carts.