Friday, November 15, 2019

How to Create a Great Presentation With Canva

Canva is a great design tool that I have been using for years to design social media graphics, posters, infographics, business cards, greeting cards, and tee shirts. Recently, I've started using Canva to create presentations too. There are a few things that I really like about using Canva to create presentations. First, Canva has great templates that are perfect for folks like me who don't have a great eye for design. Second, when I embed the presentation into a webpage or blog post the presentation automatically resizes for the space available. Third, Canva presentations can quickly be published as a nice stand-alone webpage. In the following video I demonstrate all of those features and more found in Canva's presentation creation tools.

Applications for Education
As I mentioned in the video above, Canva's presentation tool includes the option to publish your presentation as a simple stand-alone webpage. Using that option could be a great way for students to assemble a simple portfolio of their work for parents and others to see.

The Practical Ed Tech Podcast - Episode #19 - Great Google Slides Update and More

This morning I published the latest episode of The Practical Ed Tech Podcast. In this episode I shared the exciting, for some, news about Google Slides and some not-so-exciting news about how Google is using health data. The episode also features a handful of other updates from the world of educational technology that is worth considering. In the second half of the episode I answered a handful of questions from readers, listeners, and viewers like you. My favorite question, and the one I rambled about for a while, was about crafting conference proposals. Find the complete show notes here.

Listen to episode #19 of The Practical Ed Tech Podcast right here or on your favorite podcast app.

You can listen to all episodes of the podcast here or find them on the following podcast networks:

How to Make & Play "Fling the Teacher" Games

Earlier this week I wrote a post about a new game template from Classtools called Fling the Teacher. The game lets students slingshot or "fling" an image of their teachers after they answer fifteen multiple choice questions. In the following video I demonstrate how the game is played and how you can create your own Fling the Teacher game.

Thursday, November 14, 2019

How to Use Wakelet to Gather Feedback from Students

Wakelet is a great tool for creating collections of bookmarks, pictures, documents, videos, and more. It is free, easy to use, and offers privacy settings that you can easily control. It also offers a couple of easy ways to have students collaborate on creating collections. Because of the collaboration option I have been suggesting to some people that Wakelet can be a good way to collect feedback from your students in the forms of videos and pictures. In the following video I demonstrate how you can use Wakelet to post a prompt for your students then have them respond to it with pictures or videos.

My Three Step Method for Producing a Podcast

One of my new projects for this school year is producing The Practical Ed Tech Podcast every week. I'm now up to nineteen published episode (not twenty-one as I thought earlier this week). I've had a handful of people ask me about the process and the tools that I'm using to record and publish the podcast. It's actually a really simple process that only involves three tools that anyone can learn rather quickly. Those tools are Screencast-o-matic, Garage Band, and Those tools and my process for using them are demonstrated in the following video.

Step 1: Record a video in Screencast-o-matic. 

  • I use the desktop version of Screencast-o-matic which costs $18/year. But you could use the free online version if you stay under 15 minutes per recording. 
  • I record a video because I like to post it on my YouTube channel for those who prefer the YouTube option over using a podcast player app. 
Step 2: Import video into Garage Band. 
  • I import the video into Garage Band where I then extract the audio to create an MP3.
Step 3: Upload audio to
  • I use Anchor to host my podcast because they make it super easy to have the podcast distributed to all major podcast platforms including Apple Podcasts and Google Play. 
Applications for Education
Is this the fanciest podcast on the web? No. Is it a quick and simple way to produce a podcast? Yes. If you're looking for a way to start a podcast yourself or with your students, my method could be a good way to start to see if you like doing it. Then after you make that decision you could expand your editing and production skills.