Thursday, August 4, 2016

Just Beam It - Quickly Share Large Files

Just Beam It is a free service for quickly sharing files up to 2GB in size. To transfer a file to someone else just drag a file from your desktop to Just Beam It in your browser. After dragging and dropping your file Just Beam It will generate a link to it that you can share with anyone. If you upload multiple files, Just Beam It will zip them together on the fly for your convenience.

Applications for Education
If the email service in use at your school can't handle large attachments, Just Beam It could be one way for students to share files with each other and with you. Just Beam It offers a Chrome Web App that you might find useful too.

Purps the Penguin Helped by Kids With a 3D Printer

Image Credit:
Charlesjsharp - Dec 6, 2009
3D printers can provide students with a powerful tool to use in developing solutions to all kinds of problems. Read Write Web recently featured a fantastic example of students using a 3D printer to solve a problem. With the help of their school's library media specialist, Sue Prince, students in a Mystic, Connecticut middle school created a cast for an injured African penguin. The whole story can be found in the video embedded below.

To me, this story is another great example of students putting their heads together to solve a problem with the help of their teacher and the help of technology.

SIDLIT Slides - Leading Students #SIDLIT2016

This morning in Kansas I spoke at the SIDLIT Colleague to Colleague conference. The title of my keynote was Leading Students in a Hyper-connected World. The slides for my talk are embedded below.

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Searching the Deep Web as Explained by Common Craft

When students conduct research on a public search engine like Google or Bing they are only scratching the surface of what could be found on the Internet. The rest of what students could find is in what's often called the "deep web" or the "hidden web." The latest addition to the Common Craft library explains what the deep web is and how students can access resources from it for free. The Deep Web Explained is embedded below.

PingPong - Collect Sketches & Written Feedback from Students

PingPong is a student response system that I recently learned about from Danny Nicholson. Like many similar systems PingPong provides you with a free and easy way to collect feedback from students in the forms of multiple choice, true/false, and short answer questions. PingPong also lets you collect sketches from students which is a great way to have students illustrate solutions to mathematics problems or to submit diagrams to answer a question.

To start an activity on PingPong you need to create an account, but your students do not have to create accounts. Once you've created a PingPong account you can begin an activity by clicking "start PingPong" in your admin panel. Then select the type of activity that you want to run. You can run a multiple choice, true/false, short answer, or image response activity. Image response will let students draw a response to your prompt.

Students participate in your PingPong activity by going to then selecting guest and entering your room code. You can choose your own room code or use the default code that is assigned to you. Your room code is the same for all of the activities that you conduct. That could be helpful feature because once you've run a few activities your students should get the in the habit of using the same room code over and over. You could also post your PingPong room code on a board in your classroom.

Applications for Education
All PingPong activities are single question/ single prompt activities. The single question nature of PingPong makes it good for conducting a quick survey of your students' knowledge of a single concept before or after a lesson. The drawing feature makes PingPong a good option for asking questions that aren't easily answered with a typed response. PingPong offers free Android and iPad apps which make it easier than using a mouse or touch pad for students when they sketch responses to your questions.