Wednesday, January 6, 2016

A Seven Part Guide to Video Editing Fundamentals

Wistia is a great video hosting tool that I've written about in the past. Besides using it to host videos, I've used it to convert video file formats.

Wistia's learning center offers a lot of good advice for new and veteran video creators. Recently, they published a new seven part guide to video editing basics. The guide covers choosing your editing software, transferring footage and organizing projects, finding and assembling the best takes from live action video, trimming the head and tail of footage, adding music and B-roll, exporting a proof, and wrapping-up the project. Each part of the guide includes sample videos to demonstrate the topics discussed.

Applications for Education
Wistia's seven part guide to video editing basics was created for people who want to make videos for their small businesses. That said, the concepts in the guide are universal and could easily be applied to videos that your students create.

Classkick Introduces Viewer Mode - Parents Can View Students' Work on Any Device

Classkick is a free service for creating, distributing, and assessing students' work. Originally, the service was only available on iPads. It is now available to use on any device that has an updated web browser. The latest update to Classkick brings a feature called Classkick Viewer.

Classkick Viewer allows parents, teachers, and students to view assignments through any device connected to the web. The neat thing about Classkick Viewer is that parents and teachers can view their students' work in real-time and or when it is completed. Learn more about Classkick Viewer in the video embedded below.


Through Classkick you can create an online classroom through which you distribute assignments to students. Students join your class by enter the class code into the Classkick app on their iPads or on the Classkick Viewer site. Once they've joined your classroom you can start distributing assignments.

The assignments that you create in Classkick can be based on screenshots, imported images, drawings, text, or voice recordings. Classkick lets you see what your students are working on within the app or in Classkick Viewr. Students can ask you for help while working in the app. You can also give feedback to students directly through Classkick.

Three Fun Phonics Games from Teach Your Monster to Read

For the last few years I've been a fan of the online learning game called Teach Your Monster to Read. The game is designed to help students improve the speed and accuracy with which they recognize letters and sounds. The game gets its name from the friendly monster avatars that students use in the game. Today, I learned that Teach Your Monster to Read now offers three fun phonics games to be played offline.

The Teach Your Monster to Read phonics games are designed to help students increase the speed with which they recognize sounds and letters while at the same time getting them moving about your classroom, gymnasium, or playground. Currently, three phonics games are available through the Teach Your Monster to Read website. In all three games students use large grapheme flashcards that students have to properly identify and place in proper sequences.

In Pirates and Sailors students have to match the grapheme cards to objects whose name begins with the grapheme on their cards. In the Pass the Sound game students participate in a relay race of sharing corresponding grapheme cards. And in the Find My Family Sound game students have to find classmates who have drawn the same grapheme card without showing anyone what is written on their cards.

Applications for Education
Playing the Teach Your Monster to Read phonics games could be a fun way to review what your students may have learned while playing the online version of Teach Your Monster to Read.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

PBS World Explorers - The Lives & Journeys of Famous Explorers

PBS World Explorers is a new collection of videos from PBS Learning Media. The PBS World Explorers collection includes sixteen short videos about famous explorers throughout history. Some of the explorers featured in PBS World Explorers include Leif Ericson, John Cabot, and Zheng He. You'll also find the usual suspects in the collection including Marco Polo, Christopher Columbus, and Juan Ponce de León. It's also interesting to note that PBS World Explorers includes 20th Century explorers Alan Shepard and Neil Armstrong.

Applications for Education
Each of the videos in the PBS World Explorers collection is intended for audiences in grades four through eight. The videos can be downloaded from PBS Learning Media and or shared via Google Classroom.

After watching a few of the videos in the PBS World Explorers collection ask your students how some of the explorers' travels might have been different if they had access to 21st Century technology. You might also ask them to find examples of people who are explorers in the 21st Century.

How to Create & Run Review Games on Triventy

Triventy is a free quiz game platform that I wrote about at the end of December. The concept behind Triventy will feel familiar to anyone who has tried Kahoot or Quizizz. In the video embedded below I demonstrate how to create and run review activities through Triventy.


Applications for Education
One of the best features of Triventy is the option to invite collaborators to create quizzes with you. As I mentioned in the video, you could have students work together to develop review games or you could use the collaboration option to develop review games with your colleagues.