Thursday, January 10, 2019

Randomly Remind Me - An App for Building Better Habits

Randomly Remind Me is an Android app for scheduling reminders to appear on your phone or tablet at intervals you set or at randomly intervals throughout the day. Reminders that you create on the app can contain text and or pictures. If you snooze a reminder or ignore it, Randomly Remind Me will log that for you so that you can adjust your reminder schedule. If you grant the app access to location services, you can get location-based reminders.

To get started with Randomly Remind Me simply open the app and tap the green "+" icon to create your first reminder. After giving your reminder a title you can add a description and add a picture. You have the choice of having your reminders appear at random times during the day (you choose how to define your daytime hours) or you can specify when you want to be reminded. For example, I set a reminder to randomly remind me to drink water eight times during the day.

When a reminder appears on your phone you can snooze it or check it as completed. At the end of the day you can view a log of your reminders to see how many you snoozed and how many you completed.

Applications for Education
Randomly Remind Me was created to help people form new habits that they eventually work into their lives without needing a reminder. In the example that I gave above, Randomly Remind Me is sending me reminders to drink more water during the day. If you're trying to do the same as a New Year's resolution, you might want to try the app too. As I wrote on Ed Tech Fitness, when we feel better, we teach better.

A Fun Literature Game

A couple of years ago Terri Eichholz wrote a short blog post about an activity that she had found on the New Times Learning Network. I was recently scrolling through some old bookmarks and found Terri's post again. So I went to see if it's still available and it is. The activity is called Literature Quote Bingo.

In the version of Literature Quote Bingo that Terri shared (available here as a PDF) students have a grid that contains nine quotes from famous pieces of literature. Students have to pick three consecutive quotes in the grid and connect them to examples of current news stories.

Literature Quote Bingo could easily be modified. You could create a bigger grid with more quotes. You could have quotes that don't have authors' names attached and then ask students to identify the author and work. You could put authors' names in the grid then have students find quotes to match to the authors.

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Taskade - A Feature-packed Task Management Tool

Taskade is a task management tool for individuals and teams. Like many task management tools you can create lists, share those lists, and check-off items when they're completed. You can do that with Google Keep, OneNote, and a host of other task management tools. What makes Taskade different is the list of additional features that can be utilized in the app and on the Taskade website.

When you create a list in Taskade you can set a deadline for each item within the list. Files can be attached to each item in the list. And you can write comments on each item in the list. If you invite others to view a list, they can comment on list items too.

Taskade users who are working in teams might enjoy the options to be notified whenever a team member updates a list. There is also an integrated text, voice, and video chat that you can use to communicate with team members about list items.

Applications for Education
Taskade is in a crowded market that is dominated by some legacy companies. That said, if you're not married to the Google, Microsoft, or Apple ecosystems or you are looking for a different service for keeping track of tasks, Taskade does offer a nice product. It might have too many features for younger students, but older students who are working on long-term team projects could certainly benefit from using a tool like Taskade to manage completion of those projects.

How to Create a Survey in Microsoft Forms & Sort Results in Excel

Microsoft Forms is an excellent tool for creating online quizzes and surveys. You can use it to create multimedia quizzes like the one that I demonstrated here. You can also use it to create anonymous surveys. That's what I demonstrate in the new video that I created on this snowy morning in Maine. The following video demonstrates how to create a survey in Microsoft Forms and how to sort the results of the survey in Excel.

Going to BETT? Don't Miss TeachMeet BETT

One of my favorite events of the year is the TeachMeet that happens at the BETT Show. A TeachMeet is a gathering of educators who give micro (7 minutes) and nano (2 minutes) presentations on work that they have actually done in classrooms. I enjoy this format because a lot of people get to speak and because it avoids the product pitches that sometimes sneak their way into "demo slams." There is time for connecting with other educators during a TeachMeet too.

The last handful of years the TeachMeet at BETT happened in a space within Excel London. This year it's happening at a restaurant/ bar just outside of the expo building. My guess is that space will be a bit limited compared to previous years. So if you're planning to attend TeachMeet BETT, get your ticket soon (they're free).

Take a look at this short slideshow to learn more about TeachMeet BETT including how you can submit a presentation.

Thanks to Danny Nicholson at The Whiteboard Blog for the information about this year's TeachMeet at BETT.