Saturday, July 7, 2018

Math, Forms, and Images - The Week in Review

Good morning from Maine where the steamy weather has finally cooled off a bit. While it's still cool we're going on one of our favorite outings. We're going to the Maine Wildlife Park to feed the ducks and see the baby moose including this one that was befriended by a German Shepherd. Wherever you are this weekend, I hope that you get outside for some fun in the sun too.

Before my kids wake up and we head out the door, I have a run-down of this week's most popular posts to share. Take a look and see if your favorite made the list.

These were the week's most popular posts:
1. MathsLinks - A Good Place to Find Resources for Math Lessons
2. 82 Math in Real Life Lessons
3. PhET PowerPoint Add-in - Add Science & Math Simulations to Slides
4. NRICH - Another Good Place to Find Math Activities
5. 4-H STEM Lab - A Good Place to Find Hands-on STEM Activities for K-12
6. How to Use the New Google Forms Customization Options
7. How to Find Free Images to Use in Multimedia Projects

Please Say Hello to New Blog Sponsors
Advertising is one of the means through which this site is supported. This week I welcomed two new site sponsors, Typing Club and Kami. Typing Club offers a novel approach to typing instruction. Kami is a great tool for annotating PDFs and more.

Bring Me to Your School
My fall calendar is almost full! If you would like to bring me to your school for a professional development day, please get in touch. I offer professional development workshops on G Suite for Education, Teaching History With Technology, and many other topicsClick here to learn more or send an email to richardbyrne (at) to book me today.

Book Me for Your Conference
I’ve given keynotes at conferences from Australia to Alaska for groups of all sizes from 50 to 2,000+. My keynotes focus on providing teachers and school administrators with practical ways to use technology to create better learning experiences for all students. I like to shine the light on others and so I often share examples of great work done by others as well as my own. Send an email to richardbyrne (at) book me today.

Please visit the official advertisers that help keep this blog going.
Practical Ed Tech is the brand through which I offer PD webinars.
Storyboard That is my go-to tool for creating storyboards.
MySimpleShow offers a great way to create animated videos for free.
University of Maryland Baltimore County offers a great program on instructional design.
PrepFactory offers a great place for students to prepare for SAT and ACT tests.
Boise State University offers a 100% online program in educational technology.

Friday, July 6, 2018

New Metaverse Tutorials - Build Your Own Augmented Reality Games

Over the last year Metaverse has become a popular tool for creating your own augmented reality games. Many teachers have used it to create digital breakout games. Like many other tools that quickly rise in popularity, Metaverse has made some changes to make it easier for new users to get started. To that end, this week Metaverse published sixteen new tutorial videos for beginners.

In the first playlist, Getting Started, you'll find everything you need to know to make your first augmented reality experience through the Metaverse platforms.

In the second playlist, More Features, you'll find tutorials for the advanced options available within Metaverse.

Share Flipgrid Topics Through Otus

Last month Flipgrid made the huge announcement that all features were going to be made available to all users for free. That opened up a bunch of new possibilities for using Flipgrid in your classroom. Now that Flipgrid is free for everyone to use, I think we'll see more people sharing creative ways to use it in their classrooms. I predict that we'll also start to see more ways to share Flipgrid grids and topics. Case in point, Otus recently published a video about how to share Flipgrid topics with students through the Otus LMS.

Monster Heart Medic - A Game for Learning About Heart Health

Monster Heart Medic is a free iPad app produced by the Lawrence Hall of Science with funding from the National Institutes of Health. The purpose of the app is to help students learn about the cardiovascular system through a game environment.

The basic premise of Monster Heart Medic is that students have to help a friendly monster named Ragnar live a healthier life. Throughout the game students conduct exams on Ragnar to monitor components of his health like blood pressure and cholesterol. Students also have to teach Ragnar how to take care of himself by making better food choices and exercising. In all there are 37 tasks called Health Fact Achievements that students need to complete in the game.

To successfully complete all of the Health Fact Achievements in Monster Heart Medic could require a few hours or more. I played Monster Heart Medic through the first few achievements this morning and that took about fifteen minutes. Part of the reason for that time is that the initial start-up of the app includes a lot of written directions for students. The reason it takes a while to move through each achievement is that the animations and simulations are detailed and truly designed to teach not just provide a review for students.

Monster Heart Medic was designed for elementary school students but middle school students could also learn a lot from playing the game.

A Great Place to Find WordPress Tutorials

Creating a classroom or personal blog on hosted services like Blogger, Weebly, or Edublogs is rather quick and easy process. Services like these provide easy-to-follow templates and manage all of the software and security updates that a lot of people don't want to spend time fussing with. But if you blog long enough there may come a time when you want to have more customization options on your blog. That's when you might turn to self-hosting a WordPress blog. That's why last year I created this guide to help to creating a self-hosted WordPress blog.

My guide will help you get started. After you get the basic framework of your self-hosted blog established, there are nearly infinite customization options that you can use. When it comes to learning how to customize your self-hosted WordPress blog, there is not a better place than WP Beginner. WPBeginner offers free video tutorials and written tutorials about all of the basics of WordPress customization and many advanced customization options too. On WP Beginner you can find everything from how to change your default font size to how to add background color effects to how to create a forum within your WordPress blog.

Applications for Education
If you've been looking to take your classroom blog to the next level by including a classroom discussion forum within it or by creating better-looking portfolio pages, WPBeginner is a good resource to keep bookmarked.

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