Monday, October 8, 2012

Text 2 Mind Map - Type to Create a Mind Map

Text 2 Mind Map offers a great way to turn your typed outlines into mind maps. To create a mind map on Text 2 Mind Map type out an outline in the text box. After typing your outline click "draw mind map" to have your mind map created for you. If after creating your mind map you need to add more elements to just add them into your outline and click "draw mind map" again. Your mind map can be downloaded as a PDF or PNG file. The mind maps that you create on Text 2 Mind Map can also be shared via email, Facebook, or Twitter.

Applications for Education
Text 2 Mind Map bridges the gap between outlines and mind maps. If you have students who prefer to see ideas organized in an outline style they can see them on Text 2 Mind Map. If you have students who prefer to see ideas organized in a web style, they too can see them on Text 2 Mind Map.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

37 Crash Course History Videos

The last time I checked out the Crash Course history videos on YouTube they were up to 15 videos. This evening I was checking out the U.S. History Teacher's Blog where I saw that Crash Course has added some new content. Crash Course World History now has 37 videos including videos on topics in U.S. History. I've embedded their short explanation of Industrial Revolution below.

Bubble Ply - Add Stickers, Photos, & Links to Videos

Update: As of February 2013 Bubble Ply is a Facebook app. 

YouTube's video editing tools have some nice options for adding spotlights and annotations, but the special effects options are pretty limited. Take those videos a step further with Bubble Ply.  Bubble Ply is a Windows program that allows you to add a large variety of special effects to your videos. Bubble Ply allows you to add speech bubbles, stickers, photos, blocks of text, and hyperlinks to your videos. Watch the video below for a short overview of all of Bubble Ply's options.

Applications for Education
Bubble Ply could be a great little tool for enhancing raw video footage. A use for Bubble Ply in a social studies lesson could be to have students capture some rough video of important local landmarks then enhance their videos with some text and call-out bubbles.

Thanks to Jen Deyenberg for sharing Bubble Ply on Twitter last week. 

Create a Video Star on Your iPad

Video Star is a free music video creation app that I had a little fun trying out on my iPad today. To create a music video on Video Star just select a song that you have stored on your iPad then start shooting live video. The music will play for as long as you record or until the end of the song. You can also import images from your iPad to create your video. Video Star also lets you apply special effects to your video. Some of the effects that you can apply include text boxes, title boxes, frames around images, transitions, and split screens.

Your completed Video Star video can be exported to YouTube or sent to anyone via email.

Applications for Education
Video Star could be a great app for students to use to create short videos. The app is designed for fun music video projects, but it could be used for creating short documentary videos too. Have students record their own narrations and use them in Video Star with pictures about their chosen topics.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Do the Two Step to Protect Your Google Drive, Dropbox, and Box Files

Cloud storage of files is one of my favorite aspects of the modern Internet. Cloud storage services make it easy to access all of my important files from any computer and most mobile devices. And for students cloud storage eliminates the I forgot my flashdrive excuse for not having an assignment ready for class.

The potential problem with cloud storage, and any other online service for that matter, is having your account compromised. One way to make it more difficult for your account to be compromised is to enable two-step authentication.

Two-step authentication for a Google account requires entering a verification code that Google sends to your cell phone. Click here for directions or watch this video to learn more.

If you're a Dropbox user you can activate two-step authentication for your account. Click here for directions or watch the Tekzilla video below to learn more.

Other than Google Drive, Box has become my favorite cloud storage service over the last few months. This week Box added the option to enable two-step authentication for your account. Click here for directions for enabling two-step authentication on Box.