eBooks from Google Slides

ebookI’ve always been a fan of finding ways to use applications in ways other than those intended. I stumbled on this idea that I had not thought of — to use Google Slides to lay out content, then export as a PDF eBook. Kasey Bell’s ShakeUpLearning.com outlines the easy steps so that your students might start publishing their own ideas and work. I suppose the same thing could be done with Microsoft’s PowerPoint…

The URL: http://www.shakeuplearning.com/blog/how-to-create-an-ebook-with-google-slides/

Typewriter Simulator

OverTypeI’m doing some research for some printing lessons and came across this little distraction. OverType is possibly “the first typewriter sim on the web that faithfully recreates the manual typewriter experience, eschewing all modern computer conveniences like easy deletion and editing, and providing authentic features such as overtyping, wobbly and unevenly inked characters, and only being able to press one key at a time.”

The URL: http://uniqcode.com/typewriter/

(And while I’m on the topic of typewriters, I saw this related item on social media last week… Mr. Paul Smith creates amazing artwork with just his typewriter. View a short piece on him at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=svzPm8lT36o)

Growth Mindset Clips for Young Students

mojoI got this link from the Twitter feed of my pal Sid de Haan. From the site: “Introduce your students to the idea of a Growth Mindset. The simple idea that your brain is like a muscle is proven to have profound impact on learning!
Watch the video with students – they’ll love the story and identify with Mojo’s struggle. The video ends with a question, leading right into a class discussion.”

It seemed a bit contrived but when I watched it a second time, I have to wonder, “Are our young students hearing these messages enough?” They’re not just propping kids’ egos up on clouds but giving them substance to think about. What do you think? There are five short clips in this collection.

The URL: https://ideas.classdojo.com/i/growth-mindset-1

National Learn to Code Day

learntocodeThis Saturday, September 24th, Ladies Learning Code is hosting its fourth annual National Learn to Code Day — the first and only event of its kind in Canada. From the site: “This year, in partnership with Shopify, we’ll build on our mission of teaching learners 21st century digital skills and encourage them to tell their story through one of the most popular digital mediums: gaming.” Learn more and register to mentor or attend at their site.

The URL: http://ladieslearningcode.com/codeday/2016/

Sit With Us

sitwithusHere’s an interesting project designed by 16 year old California teen, Natalie Hampton. After sitting alone through lunch for her entire grade 7 year, she designed “Sit With Us” – an app that helps students who have difficulty finding a place to sit locate a welcoming group in the lunchroom. One of the features outlined in this Huffington Post article is that the ambassadorship system is private, so students do not need to be public in their search for new friends.

The URL: http://www.huffingtonpost.com.au/entry/teen-creates-app-sit-with-us-open-welcoming-tables-lunch-bullying_us_57c5802ee4b09cd22d926463

Needs of Plants and Animals (Grade 1 and High School)

neesdsWell, I guess it’s been a while since my last post! I don’t want to say that The Teacher List is done but I do reflect on how it has served its purpose over the last many years. My options are to a) redouble my efforts to pass on useful no-cost sites for teachers, b) wrap it up and move on to other projects, or c) keep it open to share only those resources that I think are exceptional, however frequently that may happen. I’m going to take the summer to think things over and make a decision in the fall.

I do have another collaborative project to share with you before we all break for the summer! There are two classes involved. The first is a Grade One class from Pollard Meadows School in Edmonton, taught by Sean Colling. The other is a Communication Technology 10 class from W.P. Wagner High School in East Edmonton, taught by me. This project is a pairing of two completely different programs. The Grade 1’s are studying the Needs of Animals and Plants — about living things and what they need to live and grow. The high school students are studying Animation. They had just completed a course using Adobe Flash to create vector drawings and movement called tweens. Many of their lessons are steeped in learning how to be a freelance print and web designer. The Scenario: The Grade One class (the Clients) have hired the high school class (the Freelancers) to animate their drawings. The students were paired up and assigned a blog post in which they were able to have a conversation in the comment section. The Freelancers asked the Clients how they wanted their drawings to be animated. They were not allowed to change the artwork in any way; it would be like changing a client’s logo! We hope you enjoy the results below. Be sure to read the comments in each blog post to get a feel for how well the two groups communicated without meeting in person.

The URL: https://sites.google.com/a/epsb.ca/needs-of-plants-and-animals

Have a wonderful summer break and we’ll catch up in the fall!