Tag Archives: edtech

Revision with “Heads Up!”

In 2013, Ellen Degeneres released an app called Heads Up. It’s a simple app, it works like “Celebrity heads” and it nicely made with some fun features. I used this app to revise key words from our History course, the students loved it.


Here is Ellen playing the game with Owen Wilson:

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Teachmeet Thursday 6th of Nov, at Wesley

Teachmeet Wesley 6th of Nov 2014I had the pleasure of hosting a Teachmeet at my school this evening. As expected, it was an inspirational, informative and informal evening, full of great sharing and networking. We had an excellent group of people with very interesting presentations.

Here are the links to the tools and sites that were presented:

And here’s the full Storify, with all tweets and photos: Continue reading

A Virtual Excursion to Florence

I created a virtual visit to Florence.

The aim of this activity is to give kids an indication of what this amazing city is like. I purposely did not include very difficult questions or complex activities; this is really about having a wander around and discover some of the places that are so important in the history of the Renaissance.

The outcome of this virtual excursion is “Seven Florence Facts”; students just have to share seven interesting renaissance facts they learnt as a result of this online excursion.

Activities include walking around Florence Cathedral (Il Duomo), going inside the Uffizi Gallery, sliding a photo on History pin to see what the Ponte Vecchio looked like after WW2 and a look inside a Medici villa.

overview Continue reading

Evernote in education

BiLQt8ICQAAcpC1Today I learnt about Evernote. I have been using it on and off for a while, but I was aware that I was not using its full functionality. So I attended a free #evernotemeetup, organised by Bec Spink. I came away with many new ideas and I feel inspired to organise myself better. I look forward to using Evernote  in the classroom and in my personal life.

Ways to use Evernote in the classroom:

  • Create a notebook for each student, keep track of all notes and correspondence etc
  • As a digital portfolio, take photos and upload students’ work
  • Students upload their homework to a shared notebook
  • Work with teachers on projects
  • Students can use Evernote for research projects
  • Perfect iPad integration, kids organise their own schoolwork in Evernote
  • See this site: http://evernote.com/teachers/

Using Evernote in Personal / Professional life:

  • Scan paper or take photos of documents. Live paperless. You can use the inbuilt Evernote Document Camera or a purpose built scanner apps (Info here)
  • Tag every note and use it to organise your tasks. Great ideas here: http://www.thesecretweapon.org/

I know I’m only scratching the surface with this powerful tool, I’ll share more when I discover more.

Below is my overview of the tweets sent during the Evernote meetup: Continue reading

If THIS then THAT, or: How to connect Diigo, Twitter, a Blog, Evernote, Facebook, Google Drive, Instagram, you name it…

“If This, Then That” (IFTTT, pronounced as IFT) is the best way to automate tasks and connect different parts of your internet social ventures.

I think it’s best explained with an example:

I use Diigo (see earlier post: Why I love Diigo) but also like the functionality that Evernote offers. I did not want to have two separate curating and archiving tools, I want them to talk to eachother. IFTTT can do that:


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A Scanner Darkly

Using a scanner app for resources

I have to share this: Using a scanner app is a great way to collect and share resources with your students.

Sometimes you are not around a photocopier or scanner and you might want to copy text from a book, or a diagram from a textbook. Taking a normal photo with your phone is an option, but particularly when photographing text, it just doesn’t come out very well.  In that case, I recommend you download a scanner app for your phone. The result is of a very high quality and it just looks better than a normal photo.

I have tried these two apps: Scanner Pro (my preferred one, $2.99 when I last checked) and JotNot (free when I last checked).

Below are two examples. I use this technique a lot. Perfect for when I’m reading a history book on the train and want to share key quotes or passages with my students.  Continue reading

Fun with wordclouds

This post is inspired by @jivespin who runs a fabulous blog full of great teaching ideas. His tweet (below) made me want to play around with Tagxuedo myself, it had been a while.

At the time of writing, importing images in Taxuedo is still in Beta so you can still import images for free. I will soon be doing Weimar and the Rise of Hitler again so I made two Taxuedos, one of Hitler and one of Stresemann. I used the Wikipedia entries as my sources list, but took some Wikipedia specific words such as: Edit, Navigation, pp, Wikipedia out of the word list. It is interesting to see the differences between the two.

A clickable version of the Wikipedia entry on Hitler below: Continue reading

SAMR: What would ‘IT’ look like in my classroom?

Integrating Technology in a meaningful way is a challenge for teachers. IT is often used as a simple a substitution for the old notebook or a white board marker.  What I like about Ruben Puentedura’s ‘SAMR’ model, is that he shows us what sophisticated and meaningful IT-use looks like.

What is SAMR?

SAMR stands for Substitute, Augmentation, Modification, Redefinition and it is a model for enhancing technology integration. It helps teachers to move from a simple task where IT might replace note-taking to a sophisticated task that incorporates all elements of IT to create a new, redefined task which was impossible to imagine 10 years ago. Continue reading

BYO – next wave in the eRevolution

  • byodHow are schools to keep up in this fast-changing world? One answer is BYOT.  Bring Your Own Technology. The concept is simple: if a student already has a  preferred technology at home, bring it to school rather than duplicate the cost  and time spent learning to navigate a new device issued or mandated by the  school.
  • Manor Lakes is one of many school’s operating on a similar model known as BYOD —  Bring Your Own Device — that limits the technology to a specific product. The  next step is obvious — students will be given the freedom to bring to the  classroom technology already available at home.
  • The BYOT model is fairly new, with only a handful of schools around the country  using it. Backers say schools that have adopted BYOT are experiencing better  results from a more personalised education, and enhanced engagement between the  home and school. But words such as equity and access keep cropping up.
  • Mr Barclay says it makes sense, both financially and academically, for students  to bring their own devices to his school — especially as it grows. Continue reading