Tuesday, February 22, 2011

METC 2011 Rocked!

I wanted to put out a quick post. I had my first iPad/iPhone/Android Digital Band Jam last week at METC 2011 (The Midwest Education Technology Conference).  I have to say it was pretty sweet getting to jam with some of the METC presenters! There's nothing like geeking out and jamming with bloggers I follow! Kevin Honeycutt on guitar, Rushton Hurley on iPhone and Tammy Worcester on Galaxy Tablet. Be sure to follow them on Twitter. Enjoy.  @kevinhoneycutt  @rushtonh  @tammyworcester

Go easy. This was our first gig! Hopefully we can get the band back together. That's me with the ipad!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Virtual Field Trip With Microsoft's Photosynth

What is it:  Microsoft's Photosynth takes photos, mashes them up and creates a 3D scene out of them! Photosynth allows you to pan in and out of several two dimensional images, stitched together and create a three dimensional experience. This one allows you to "walk around" a statue of Anne Frank.

How to integrate it: With MS Photosynth, you have the ability to create a virtual field trip for your students. Need to take your students to Philadelphia but you live in Austin? No problem. You could always just whip out a photo of Independence Hall that you found on Google, put it up on your IWB and viola! Instant field trip, right? BORING. With Photosynth, you can take a "walk" in and around the building that our forefathers once set foot in. Take a look a the example below.

If you DO have the opportunity to take students on a field trip, have each student take pictures of the trip and upload them to Photosynth to create a collaborative interactive presentation.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

History For Music Lovers

There are teachers who go above and beyond to ensure that their students are hooked on a lesson and then there is Amy Burvall, from the Le Jardin Academy in Kailua, Oahu, and her creative partner, Herb Mahelona.
The two decided to make history fun and exciting by using popular music that they and their students were listening to. So they changed a few of the lyrics, created their own music videos and posted them to YouTube. Want to learn about the French Revolution? "Lady Gaga" can tell you all about it. Does the Black Death sound grim and morbid? Not when "Gwen Stefani" sings it!  

I've got to give it to Burvall. She puts herself out there by getting in front of the camera and singing all of the songs. But it sounds and looks great. Her students must get excited when she is about to introduce the next unit on Cleopatra as "Fergie"!

Here's a link to a recent story in the Washington Post and a link to their YouTube Channel.