Wednesday, October 14, 2015

TTT -  WordSift

Technology tips and tricks on a regular basis.
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WordSift
Word Cloud Interactive

Greetings Sequoyah, 

At OTA our keynote speaker Kenneth Shelton (http://kennethshelton.net/) created a lot of Google Forms. People in the audience would respond to questions through the form and the answers would be automatically populated. No need for respondents to log in. Just go to the website and type in answers. Easy to do from a mobile phone with a QR code showing a Bit.Ly link. Most everyone in the audience used a phone or tablet with a few of us on laptops. 

In one instance he showed a photograph of a skater. Everyone wrote what they saw. He went to the spreadsheet for the form and copied the text. Kenneth then went to the WordSift website (http://www.wordsift.com/) where he pasted the text. The words shown on the screen as a word cloud. There is a button on WordSift to create workspace. This allows the user to pull down words to highlight features. There is also a cool thesaurus built into the site.


Thanks and don't forget to be awesome, 

Andy

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Tuesday, October 13, 2015

TTT -  Coaching and Mentoring

Technology tips and tricks on a regular basis.
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Coaching and Mentoring
Preparing Others

Greetings Sequoyah, 

One of the presentations I had the pleasure of attending at the OTA/Encyclomedia conference was on coaching vs. Mentoring. The speaker Dr. Bruce Ellis (https://twitter.com/drbruceellis) covered the two models of teaching others. How to develop a good program based on desired outcomes. I see this is a major issue going forward with technology. At Sequoyah we have tried several different approaches to teaching technology to teachers. Success has been noticeable in some areas and in others we still falter. Moving forward we have some essential questions that need answers. We need to develop a plan based on those questions and have follow through with the methods and processes we decide upon. 

As technology becomes more pervasive in the educational arena it will be necessary for teachers to not only know the technology itself but to be able to teach students how to use the technology for greater understanding. I look forward to the adventure ahead.

Thanks and don't forget to be awesome, 

Andy

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Monday, October 12, 2015

TTT -  SoundCloud

Technology tips and tricks on a regular basis.
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SoundCloud
PodCasting Made Easy

Greetings Sequoyah, 

We are becoming familiar with blogging. Writing and sharing, developing ideas and creating. One of the next extensions in the blogging world is the PodCast. PodCasting is a recording published to the web. They were once saved onto the iPod for playback. Now most any device can be used not only to playback a PodCast but to record one too. 

Scott turned me onto SoundCloud (https://soundcloud.com/). SoundCloud is a PodCasting platform. Record, upload, and playback your recordings with ease. Morning drives seem to be a popular time for recording via a mobile phone. I set up my SoundCloud account in about ten minutes and made my first podcast on my way to school on Friday. 

One of the issues I see with the podcast is preparation. How to fill the time. Topics and transitions. It is really necessary to plan ahead unless you are just a really good communicator. But if you are a really good communicator you already plan ahead. Anyway check out SoundCloud. How can you use it in the classroom? 

Students could record a presentation. Maybe they do not want to talk in front of class. It would be for the teachers eyes (ears) only. Words and definitions can be recorded to help study time. Auditory learners would benefit greatly from hearing it again. Lecture notes on SoundCloud, share with the class. Class projects like an radio interview of historical figures or a old time radio show. 

Be sure to share with us if you are developing a PodCast. 

Thanks and don't forget to be awesome, 

Andy

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