Friday, February 5, 2016

Mic Note - Create Time-stamped Multimedia Notes

Mic Note is a free Chrome app that allows you to create voice recordings, text notes, and image-based notes on one concise notebook page. The notes that you record with your voice can be time-stamped by clicking on your Mic Note note page while you're recording. You can also take notes without recording any audio. All notes support inclusion of images and links. The best part of Mic Note is that you can sync all of your notes to your Google Drive or Dropbox account. Watch the video below to see how you can create notes in Mic Note.

Applications for Education
Mic Note could be a good tool for students who want or need to record a teacher giving a short presentation. Students could let the recorder run while they type their own notes about what the teacher is saying to the class. And because Mic Note supports pictures, students could insert images of slides and or diagrams that their teachers display.

Mic Note also has potential to be a good tool for students who are conducting interviews as they can write time-stamped notes while recording.

Students Can Compare Maps Side-by-Side in GE Teach

GE Teach is a great map tool that I last featured about 18 months ago. GE Teach is developed and maintained by a high school teacher in Texas named Josh Williams. We had the chance to meet at TCEA this week and chat about GE Teach.

GE Teach has gone through a bunch of iterations over the years. It is now built on the Google Maps API. On GE Teach students can compare two maps side-by-side. Students can select from gallery of map layers to compare side-by-side in GE Teach. In addition to comparing maps students can still use the drawing and measuring tools that you would typically find in Google's My Maps tool.

Applications for Education
GE Teach provides a great way for students to compare data sets in a map environment. In the screenshot above you can see that I decided to compare total population with population density. That comparison allows students to see where people live within the most populated countries in the world.

A bonus of GE Teach is that your students can enable the drawing and measuring tools without having to sign into a Google Account.

How to Create a Collaborative KWL Chart Online

Earlier this week at TCEA I gave a presentation on mind maps, timelines, and collaborative brainstorming tools. One of the tools that I featured in that session was Realtime Board. Realtime Board is a great tool for creating and sharing mind maps, KWL charts, and diagrams. In the video embedded below I provide an overview of how to create a collaborative KWL chart in Realtime Board.

Realtime Board gives schools free access to all of the premium features. Complete the form here to get the Realtime Board education edition.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Three Examples of Students Creating Real-World Products to Solve Problems That Mattered to Them

In many of my presentations I try to make the point that "real world" problems are whatever problems that matter to students. That problem could be figuring out how to get into college, how to earn some money, or how to better prepare for an exam that feels important to them. In my presentation Leading Students In a Hyper-connected World I share some examples of students who have identified real world problems and then done something about them.

Vocabulist is a free tool that was developed by a high school student named Ahan Malhotra. He built Vocabulist to help him and other students more easily create vocabulary review exercises. The tool allows students to upload documents and have vocabulary words extracted from them. Vocabulist then matches definitions to the words. The matched words and definitions can be shared to Quizlet to study as flashcards. Watch my video below to see how Vocabulist works. Read more of Ahan's story here.

George Burgess developed the Gojimo app as a teenager to help him prepare for geography exams. Three years later Gojimo has expanded to offer review activities for geography, history, mathematics, and language arts. Gojimo also offers ACT and SAT prep. Though only an iPad app at first, it is now available as an Android app and as a web app. Read more of George's story here.

Chow Checker was developed by students was developed by Christina Winsor DiMicelli's students at Hampstead Academy in New Hampshire. The app was submitted to and won Verizon's Innovative App Challenge in 2013. Chow Checker is a free Android app that anyone can use to search for foods and discover which allergens may be in them. Chow Checker users can create profiles of their own allergens to help them keep track of the foods that contain allergens that can affect them. You don't have to create a profile in order to use the app. You can simply enter a food's name or part of the name ("trail" instead of "trail mix" for example) and view the common allergens that it contains.

Resources from #TCEA16

Over the last two days I had the privilege to give six presentations at the TCEA conference in Austin, Texas. As I always do, I put the slides and other resources from my presentations online at Practical Ed Tech. The six presentations that I gave were:

  • Classroom Uses for Google Books
  • Ten Common Challenges Facing Educators
  • Mind mapping, timelines, and collaborative brainstorming 
  • Discovery, Discussion, Demonstration 
  • 24/7 Learning
  • Leading Students In a Hyper-connected World.
When you land on my TCEA resources page you may be greeted by a pop-up offering the opportunity to subscribe to the Practical Ed Tech Newsletter. That is a free newsletter that I send out every Sunday evening and only on Sunday evening. In the Practical Ed Tech Newsletter I share my favorite tip of the week along with a list of the most popular posts of the week from Free Technology for Teachers