Wednesday, February 26, 2014

SpeakPipe - Receive Voicemail Through Your Blog

SpeakPipe is a neat little service that allows visitors to your blog to leave you voice messages without picking up a phone. I had it installed on a classroom blog for a while. Until this week the only way to have SpeakPipe appear on your blog was as a pop-out widget. Now you can embed the recording widget directly into your blog (the sidebar is the ideal placement).

With SpeakPipe installed on your blog anyone can click on the "send voicemail" button and leave a message for you. When a visitor clicks the "leave voicemail" button she will be prompted to allow access to her computer. Then the visitor can start recording a message for you. Visitors can, but don't have to, enter their names and email addresses for you. You can listen to and download the messages left for you in your SpeakPipe inbox.

Applications for Education
When installed on a school website SpeakPipe could provide a good way for parents to leave voicemail messages. SpeakPipe messages can be downloaded to your computer so if you need a simple way for students to record their voices for use in a multimedia project, SpeakPipe might be handy to have on your classroom blog.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

How to Add Voice Comments to Your Google Documents

In an earlier post I featured a free tool for adding voice comments to Google Documents. That tool is called Kaizena. In the video below I provide an overview of how to use Kaizena to leave voice comments on documents that are shared with you through Google Drive.

Knowmia Introduces Personalized URLs for Sharing Flipped Lessons With Your Students

Knowmia is a great website and an iPad app for creating, sharing, and viewing video lessons. Today, they introduced the option to choose your own Knowmia URL to share with your students. This will allow you to simply send your students to your URL to view the lessons that you have created for them.

To claim your Knowmia address, login to myKnowmia and click "edit/view teacher profile."

One of the better features of Knowmia is the assignment wizard. The Knowmia Assignment Wizard allows teachers to design assignments that their students have to complete after watching a video. Students can check their own Knowmia accounts to see the assignments that their teachers have distributed to them.

To aid teachers in assessing their students, Knowmia offers an automatic scoring option. Knowmia's automatic scoring function works for multiple choice questions and numeric questions. The automatic scoring is based on your answer key. Assignments are scored when students make a submission. Along with automatic scoring teachers have the option to see when a student initially opened an assignment and how many questions they've tried before submitting the assignment.

Kaizena Improves Workflow for Voice Commenting on Google Documents

Kaizena is a free tool that you can integrate with your Google Drive account to leave voice comments on the the documents that your students share with you. With Kaizena authorized to access your Google Drive account you can highlight portions of your students' work and add voice or text comments to it.

Until this week Kaizena only allowed you to import one Google Document at a time. This week Kaizena announced support for importing entire folders from your Google Drive account. An archiving option was also added this week. The archive feature allows you to remove a document from your account, but the student retains the voice comments.

Applications for Education
Kaizena may not save you time in giving feedback to students. However, for students who need audio support Kaizena could be an excellent way to provide that support while giving them feedback on their written work.

Free Webinar Tonight - Digital Storytelling With Comics

Just a reminder that tonight at 7pm Eastern I'll be hosting a free webinar on digital storytelling with comics. You can register for the webinar here.

The webinar is sponsored by Storyboard That, but will not be limited to only using Storyboard That. You will also see WeVideo and Widbook in use. Storyboard That offers a free plan (which is more than adequate for classroom use) and a premium plan. A 25% discount code will be given to those who register and attend the webinar.

The webinar will be based on my free ebook Digital Storytelling Projects With Comics.