Saturday, May 14, 2016

The Week in Review - The Overseers

Good evening from Maine where I am home after a couple of days in Pennsylvania for PSLA 2016. It was an honor to give the keynote at the conference full of enthusiastic teacher-librarians. On Thursday evening I gave the opening keynote. Before I took the stage there was a short ceremony to install the new PSLA officers. My laptop was accidentally bumped during that ceremony and my slides advanced until they were stuck on a picture of my dogs. For a few moments it looked like they were overseeing the ceremony. Of course, I had to snap a picture of it and post it on Instagram.

Here are this week's most popular posts:
1. 7 Tools for Creating Flowcharts, Mind Maps, and Diagrams
2. How to Blend Images in Google Slides
3. ReadWorks Publishes Summer Reading Packs for K-12
4. Six Alternatives to TechSmith's Snagit, Knowmia, and ScreenChomp
5. How to Create Recordings of Your iPad's Screen
6. How to Use Facebook to Bookmark Links
7. LitCharts Offers Guides to Popular & Classic Literature

Spring and Summer PD Opportunities With Me
Would you like to have me speak at your school or conference?
Click here to learn about my professional development services. 

Please visit the official advertisers that help keep this blog going.
Practical Ed Tech is the brand through which I offer PD webinars.
BoomWriter provides a fantastic tool for creating writing lessons. 
FreshGrade is a great online digital portfolio tool. 
Storyboard That is my go-to tool for creating storyboards and cartoon stories.
Discovery Education & Wilkes University offer online courses for earning Master's degrees in Instructional Media.
PrepFactory offers a great place for students to prepare for SAT and ACT tests.
FrontRow offers adaptive online ELA and Math practice activities.  
Teach n Go is a comprehensive platform for teaching online courses.
The University of Maryland Baltimore County offers graduate programs for teachers.
Boise State University offers a 100% online program in educational technology.
EdTechTeacher is hosting host workshops in six cities in the U.S. in the summer.
Buncee offers a great tool for creating visual stories. 

Slides From My Presentations at PSLA 2016

One of my favorite things to do professionally is speak at conferences because I get to meet so many passionate educators. This week I had the privilege to give the opening keynote at the PSLA 2016 conference on Thursday evening. On Friday morning I gave another presentation. The slides from both of my presentations are embedded below.



Visit my work with me page to learn how to bring me to your school or conference.

How to Create Audio Slideshow Videos on Stupeflix (No sign-in required)

In my post yesterday evening I mentioned that at the PSLA conference in Pennsylvania I demonstrated how to create an audio slideshow video with Stupeflix. For folks who came to my presentation and anyone else who is curious about the tool, I offer the following tutorial video.


Applications for Education
Some of the highlights of Stupeflix for teachers are that it doesn't require email addresses, there is not a recording length limitation, and there is a library of free music that students can use in their videos.

Friday, May 13, 2016

How to Create an Interactive Series of Videos

Earlier today people who are subscribed to my YouTube channel may have received a notification of a new video posted. If you watched it (all 12 seconds of it) you might have wondered, "what the heck is Richard doing?" I posted it during a presentation this morning. The presentation was about making videos with students. That particular video was a demonstration of how to post a video made on Stupeflix to a YouTube channel. Then I demonstrated how to add annotations to the video. Adding annotations to videos allows you to create an interactive series of videos. In the video embedded below I demonstrate how to create an interactive series through the use of YouTube annotations.

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Six Alternatives to TechSmith's Snagit, Knowmia, and ScreenChomp

This morning TechSmith announced that they are closing down Knowmia, ScreenChomp, and Snagit for Chrome. In other words, half of their free products that teachers loved. Here are some alternatives to those tools.

Three Alternatives to Snagit for Chrome:
Nimbus Screenshot is a free extension that allows you to capture screen images and create screencast videos. Screencasts recorded with Nimbus Screenshot can be saved to your local drive or to an online Nimbus account. I chose to save to my local drive then upload to my YouTube channel. You could also save to your local drive then share to Google Drive or another online storage service.

Evernote's Chrome extension now includes a screenshot tool. Images are saved directly to your Evernote account where you can then annotate them with drawings and text.

CaptureCast is a great tool for creating screencasts on a Chromebook. CaptureCast is rather easy to install. Your recording length is unlimited. You can record your webcam while recording your screen which you cannot do with the Nimbus tool or Snagit. Set-up of CaptureCast is easy too. For folks who don't want to use YouTube to share recordings, CaptureCast lets you share directly to a Vimeo account.

Three Alternatives to Knowmia and ScreenChomp:
30hands is a freemium iPad app that makes it very easy to create a narrated slideshow and or whiteboard video. To create a basic narrated slideshow on 30hands all you need to do is import images from your iPad’s camera roll then press the record button below each image to record your narration. If you don’t have any pictures on your iPad you can take pictures using the 30hands app. 30hands also allows you to draw images instead of importing pictures. You can combine imported pictures with drawn images in your presentations. And you can draw on top of imported images. When your project is complete you can save it on your iPad or share it with the 30hands community.

Educreations is a free iPad app that turns your iPad into a whiteboard. You can use the app to illustrate concepts and narrate what you’re doing on the screen. You can draw images from scratch on the Educreations iPad app or you can upload images and draw on them. Your completed lesson can be shared directly to others or made public on the Educreations website.

ShowMe was the first whiteboard app that I ever tried and it is still good. ShowMe is an app for creating and sharing whiteboard-style lessons on your iPad. To support teachers, the Show Me website is building a gallery of lessons developed and shared by teachers. Each day there is a “Show Me of the Day” that is added to the gallery of lessons. Click here to download the app from iTunes.