Monday, February 11, 2013

Create an Audio Slideshow With Narrable

Narrable is a neat service for creating short narrated slideshows. Wes Fryer wrote a glowing review of Narrable and when Wes gives a service high marks I know that I have to try it out. My initial impression of Narrable is that it is kind of like VoiceThread mashed with Animoto.

To create an audio slideshow on Narrable start by uploading some pictures that you either want to talk about or have music played behind. After the pictures are uploaded you can record a narration for each picture through your computer's microphone or by calling into your Narrable's access phone number. You can also upload an audio recording that is stored on your computer. Narrable projects can be shared via email, Facebook, or by embedding them into a blog.


Applications for Education
Narrable could be a good way to get students to tell a short story by adding narration to pictures that they have taken or found online. Have students search for some Creative Commons licensed images arranged around topics that they're studying then record a short slideshow about them. 

Narrable allows you to have five projects for free. After that you can "earn" more free projects by sharing your projects on Facebook.

BrainyBox - Present Slides and More in a Cubed Format

BrainyBox is a new offering from Russel Tarr. Russel shared it with me last week and I finally had some time to try it this evening. I think that it might be a neat way for students to build and share multimedia slides on their tablets (including iPads) and computers.

BrainyBox provides six blank screens in which students can build slides that include text, videos (via embed codes), images, and hyperlinks. I also discovered that I could embed SoundCloud recordings and Google Maps into my screens. The finished product displays my slides as a cube that can embedded into a blog post or shared by directing people to the unique URL assigned to my project. All projects can be edited by their owners at any time.

Applications for Education
There are a couple of things that I like about BrainyBox for student use. First, students are limited to six slides so they have to be concise in telling their stories. Second, BrainyBox supports a lot of media formats so students have a variety of ways that they can tell their stories in those six slides.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

A Short Guide to Using Google Drive on Your iPad

Cross-posted from iPad Apps for School

For a devoted Google Drive user like myself having Google Drive on my iPad is a must. Last week I had some questions from readers about how to use Google Drive on their iPads. This weekend I put together a short guide to using Google Drive on your iPad. The guide is embedded below. I am using Scribd to host the document and you can download the guide from Scribd.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Teaching Tree - Video Explanations of Computer Science Concepts

Teaching Tree is a free resource for anyone who is interested in learning about computer science on his or her own. Teaching Tree offers videos organized into five categories with dozens of topics inside each category. The videos that you will find in Teaching Tree are a mix of short tutorials and longer lectures from university professors. The longer lectures are tagged with the key concepts that they contain. Clicking on a tag jumps you to the spot in the lecture that addresses the concept you want to learn about.

Registered Teaching Tree users can add videos and tag videos.

Applications for Education
Teaching Tree could be a great resource for students who want to learn about computer science on their own. If you teach computer science courses Teaching Tree could be useful for locating review materials to share with your students. You may also consider having your students search for or create videos to share on Teaching Tree and then tag them to help other people learn from their work.

Week in Review - Back to 1st Grade

Click to enlarge.
Good morning from Phoenix, Arizona where I'm missing out on the fun of a significant snowstorm. I hope that all of my friends and readers in the Northeast are safe and sound in the storm.

This week I had the privilege of working with teachers and students at Paradise Valley Christian Preparatory in Scottsdale, Arizona. I worked with students during the day and teachers in the afternoon. One of the highlights of the trip for me was working with first grade students. I hadn't spent time with first grade students since I was a first grade student so I wasn't sure what to expect. It was a blast! We made a short video, Skyped with a guest speaker from Canada (thank you Jen Deyenberg), used Go Animate and played some ABCYa games.

Here are this week's most popular posts:
1. 5 Good Task Management Tools for Teachers and Students
2. 5 Uses of Augmented Reality in Education
3. A New Crash Course in U.S. History
4. 200+ MOOCs and Free Online Certificate Programs
5. 50 Years of Space Exploration & 10 Good Resources for Learning About Space

Would you like me to visit your school this year? 
Click here for information about my professional development services.

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Vocabulary Spelling City offers spelling practice activities that you can customize.
MasteryConnect provides a network for teachers to share and discover Common Core assessments.
ABCya.com is a provider of free educational games for K-5.
Lesley University offers quality online graduate programs for teachers.
The University of Maryland Baltimore County offers graduate programs for teachers.
Boise State University offers a 100% online program in educational technology.
EdTechTeacher.org is hosting iPad Summit USA in Atlanta this spring.

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