Wednesday, November 4, 2015

More Than 8,000 Teachers Get Their Ed Tech Tips This Way

Every month I hear nice compliments from readers of FreeTech4Teachers.com and the FreeTech4Teachers Facebook page followed by, "I don't always keep up with it." To solve that problem, last year I started the PracticalEdTech.com newsletter. More than 8,000 people are now receiving that newsletter in their inboxes on Sunday evening or Monday morning (depending on where they live).

The PracticalEdTech.com newsletter includes my tip of the week and the links to that week's most popular posts on FreeTech4Teachers.com. The newsletter is sent out only once per week on Sunday evening (Eastern Standard Time). Click here to subscribe to the PracticalEdTech.com newsletter. And if you don't need another email in your inbox, you can simply visit PracticalEdTech.com to see the same information.

As a bonus for subscribers to the PracticalEdTech.com newsletter I give a discount on the popular online courses that I teach through PracticalEdTech.com.

GroupTing Makes It Easy to Coordinate Classroom Events and Volunteers

We're starting to get into the time of the school year in which a lot of elementary schools will be having special events like classroom parties and PTA fundraisers. As anyone who has tried to organize those kind of events can tell you, it can become a time-consuming task to get everything coordinated. GroupTing is a free service that makes it easy to coordinated events and volunteers. In the video embedded below I demonstrate how to organize an event in GroupTing.


This video is number 165 in my playlist of Practical Ed Tech Tips.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Create Great Visual Stories on Adobe Slate

Earlier this year Adobe released a free iPad app called Adobe Slate. Adobe Slate is a free app that you can use to create image-based stories. This week, Adobe launched a browser-based version of Adobe Slate.

The browser-based version of Adobe Slate is designed to help you create a visual story from the pictures on your desktop, from the web through a built-in Creative Commons search tool, from an Adobe online account, or from a Dropbox account. You start your story by importing a cover picture and writing story title. You then add pictures one-by-one and write captions for each. You can also write headlines for each image. One convenient feature of Adobe Slate is that the integrated image search tool will import Creative Commons attributions with the images you select. Adobe Slate has a dozen or so filters or themes that you can apply to your story. Completed stories can be published online through a variety of channels including Adobe’s platform, Facebook, or Twitter. Stories can also be embedded into a blog post as I've done below.

My dog, Max

Applications for Education
Adobe Slate is a nice tool, but it doesn’t stand out as being any better than Storehouse, Tackk, Haiku Deck or any number of similar options. All of those tools and Adobe Slate provide a nice way for students to share the highlights of a personal story or share the highlights of an online research activity.

Episode 2 of the Rod & Richard Show - We Answer Your Ed Tech Questions

Last week I published the debut episode of the new Rod & Richard Show in which Dr. Rod Berger and I discuss trends in ed tech and answer your ed tech questions. We plan to release one new episode per week. Episode 2 is embedded below.


R&Repisode2 from MindRocket Media Group on Vimeo.

If you have an ed tech question that you would like me or Rod to answer, please Tweet with the hashtag #askrichardbyrne, post a message on EdCircuit, or send me an email at richardbyrne (at) freetech4teachers.com

5 Ways to Reduce Test Stress #TeacherNinja

Keith Hughes is best known for his fantastic history lesson videos for students. There is more than just history lessons on his YouTube channel. He has a playlist of 27 videos containing practical tips and advice for new teachers. My favorite of those videos is 5 Ways for Teachers to Chillax Students on Test Day. Even experienced teachers will find something helpful in Keith's Teaching Stuff playlist.