Tuesday, October 11, 2022

Record a Tour in Google Earth

The Amazing Race is the only reality game show that I've watched with interest for as long as it has been on television. Years ago I created a classroom game based on the same premise of the show. This spring I updated that game with some new graphics and new challenges and then published it as a PDF on PracticalEdTech.com

Recording a Google Earth tour is the capstone activity in Around the World With Google Earth. There are a couple of ways that students can do that. Students who are using the desktop version of Google Earth can use the built-in recorder. Students who are using the web version of Google Earth can use a screencasting tool like Screencastify to record a tour

In this short video I demonstrate how to record a Google Earth tour in your web browser by using Screencastify. 


Monday, October 10, 2022

This Little Trick Makes Podcast Editing Easier

When editing a video there are visuals that make it relatively easy to know where to cut. The same is not true when editing audio for a podcast unless you use the "clap and pause" trick. That trick, demonstrated in the short video that is embedded below, gives you a clear audible sign of where to edit and it gives you a visual sign of where to edit when using an editor like GarageBand or Audacity. 

Editing an audio recording is much easier if you make a loud clap before a brief pause and then begin speaking. The same is true if you need to pause while recording. That clap will be easy to hear and will be easy to see in audio editing tools. In audio editing tools like Audacity and GarageBand that clap and pause will be identified by a big visual spike followed by a steep drop. You won’t need to listen through the whole recording to find the places you need to edit because you’ll see them in the audio editor.

A Classic - How to Use Classtools.net to Create a Fake Text Message Exchange

Russel Tarr, owner of Classtools.net, has developed and published a bunch of great tools over the years. One of my favorite of those is the Fake SMS Generator which Russel developed almost a decade ago and is still going strong.

The Classtools Fake SMS Generator is free to use and does not require students to register to use it. In the video below I demonstrate how to create a fictitious text message exchange between historical characters.



As I mentioned in the video, the Fake SMS Generator could also be used to create visuals for lessons on cyber-safety and etiquette.

Sunday, October 9, 2022

How to Create Your Own Search Engine

A couple of weeks ago I published a post about two ways to add an image search tool to your website. One of those methods is to build your own search engine. Thanks to Google's Programmable Search tool it's much easier to create your own search engine than you might think it is. In the short video embedded below I demonstrate how to create your own search engine.



Applications for Education
Creating your own small search tool can be helpful when you are introducing younger students to web search strategies. By making your own search tool you can limit how many sites are indexed, know which sites are indexed, and have a reasonable expectation of what will appear when your students use your custom search engine.

Why Our Voices Sounds Different to Us Than to Others

One of the questions that I often get asked after giving a keynote is "has anyone told you that you sound like Ray Romano?" I never thought that I did until people started asking me that. A dozen years later I've come to accept that I do sound like him. On a similar note, 
"do I really sound like that?" is a question that you will hear many students ask the first they hear themselves on an audio recording. 

How other people hear your voice is different than how you hear it. An older episode of SciShow explained why our voices sound different to us than they do to others.



Applications for Education
The next time you have students recording a podcast through a service like Anchor and they ask, "do I really sound like that?" tell them yes and create a little science lesson out of the SciShow video.