Tuesday, August 28, 2012

App Review: Croak.it audio recorder

Croak.it is a super simple audio recorder that works on multiple devices including iOS (iPad, iTouch, iPhone), Android phones, or via your computer browser. It is similar in many ways to vocaroo.com with the added benefit of having a mobile app. The advantage of using a cross-platform program like croak.it is the ability to use every computing device available whether these be student or school owned.

Another advantage of the Croak.it recorder is that it does not require any account sign up. This means students can quickly create and share their recordings without the hassel of logging in. One suggestion that I have for saving recordings is to create a simple Google Form that students can use to submit their recording links. (see video below) This allows you to collect student recordings with out having to use an e-mail account.

(Use Google Forms to collect screenchomp, glogster and youtube links)

The recordings are limited to 30 seconds or less which could be both an advantage or disadvantage. I often warn teachers to be careful when assigning video or audio projects to students due to the time it takes to listen to each recording depending on the length. Because of the 30 second time limit you may want to encourage students to rehearse (never a bad idea) before they record.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Upcoming Conference Presentations

I am excited to share that I'll presenting at two great conferences this fall. Hope to see many of you there!

Michigan Google Educators Conference - October 19, 2012 (Southfield, MI)

Session Description: 

Amplify the agenda - Making meetings and PD more engaging with Google Docs.
This session will model the use of Google Docs to create and facilitate dynamic/interactive agendas and training resources. Learn how the online collaborative features of Google Docs have transformed the way St. Clair County RESA delivers information and facilitates participant driven meetings and professional development. Participants will walk away with a better understanding of the power behind creating resources that encourage participation, reflection, and extended communication. Highlights include: An experiential model of participant driven PD, examples of agendas for meetings and PD, and formatting tips to create auto-generated hyperlinked tables of content.  

Michigan Digital Learning Conference - November 15-16 (Clinton Township, MI)

Session Description: 

Learning is beautiful:Leveraging the iPad as a tool for expression and creativity

Learn how to make the most of your iPad’s cameras, microphone and multi-touch gestures with Free apps like Educreations, Popplet Lite and Splice. The principles of Universal Design for Learning will frame our conversation as we look at how to meet the needs of all learners. In this hands-on session we will explore how these dynamic multi-media tools help teachers and students create resources that address a variety of learning strengths and needs. And best of all, have Fun!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

App Review: Make Dice Lite - Differentiating with cooperative learning structures and thinking cubes

Here is a brief video app tour of Make Dice Lite. This app allows you to create up to six custom six-sided dice. One or multiple dice can be thrown at a time. Creating custom dice is relatively simple and could be created quickly by having students open a document or website that contains pre-written questions or categories and then copying and pasting these onto your custom made dice. The one drawback to this Free app is the pop-up adds that occur between rolling events.

For more information on using Cooperative Learning to differentiate instruction with or without the iPad I highly recommend these resources put together by St. Clair County RESA Math and Science Assistant Director, Laura Chambless.

I've also included a few links to Cube and Thinking Dot activities and examples to help get you started.

Kagan Cooperative Learning - Learning Cubes
Cube and Thinking Dot Activities
Thinking Cube resources
Thinking Cube example

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Edmodo overview video with embedded formative assessment using the new quiz feature in Camtasia 8

I wanted to share this 7 minute introduction to Edmodo that I recently created using trial copy of TechSmith's newest version of their screencasting software Camtasia 8. Previously, Camtasia provided the option to embed assessment questions into their videos, however, the results could not be collected by the video creator. In this newest version of Camtasia the results are e-mailed nightly to the creator or an e-mail recipient selected by the creator as a spreadsheet file. This could be a fantastic way to promote active viewing within the video and determine how well the information is being received.

Feel free to check out the video below to see how the embedded assessments function or to learn more about the basic features of Edmodo. You can select the option to skip the quiz if you like by clicking on the "watch video only" link. Enjoy!