A page for all things computers, in this time of 1:1 in class.

Using PDFs, instead of Photocopies.
Step 1: Find or make a pdf. If you have an existing one, then move to step 2. If not you can easily make one by using the Photocopier to scan the file and send the pdf scan to your email. Instructions for this are on the wall be the photocopiers.

Step 2: Make the pdf available for the students to download. This can be achieved in multiple ways: email; Simon; wikis... But I won't go into that here.

Step 3: Students can open the pdf in a program called Preview - which is a super simplified pdf reader kind of like Adobe Reader (which they don't have).
Once it is open in Preview, get the students to click on Annotate (at the top centre of window). This will open a small toolbar down the bottom of the window that allows students to add text, shapes, etc, to the pdf and therefore 'fill in' a pdf worksheet.

Step 4: Students can then save the pdf with the annotations they have made. To do this, save like any file, go to File, Save As, pick a name for the file and where you want to save it, click Save.

*Remember that you don't need to be an expert at doing this, most students can figure it out and help each other. I learnt this from 2 girls in my Year 9 Italian class. You just need to let them know it's possible and send them in the right direction.

An easy to use comic strip maker online.
It's already unblocked and the students can make an account to sign in using their school email.
Oh, and it's lots of fun! Here's one I made...

If you want to see some that my year 7's made their first time using it, check out my Italian wiki, year 7 page, through the link below.
Yr 7 Italian

Top 100 Tools for Learning 2010

101 Ways of using Technology

100 Top Online Sites for Teachers
100 Apps for Teachers

Snowball Email responses to how we are using laptops in the classroom.

1. If a student is giving an oral presentation - video it on Photobooth and have the student self- evaluate their own performance when watching the replay. What were their strengths and weaknesses?

2. If conducting a group exercise like a small group discussion – have one of the students record the discussion on Garageband or something similar. Have the group listen to the conversation again and analyse the group dynamics that took place or write down the common themes discussed.

3. Use Skype (video or voice) to interview people in industry/other schools/parents/family as a way of having a virtual guest speaking in the classroom

4. Use Photo booth to take pictures of experimental setups instead of students drawing them. They can then import these into pages and attach labels.

5. Create a video diary a la your favorite (or otherwise) 'reality' tv show. This can be done for performance or as part of a learning diary.

6. Email class instructions to students for extras AND/OR
6 1/2. Leave extras by emailing the teaching component of your class as a photo booth recording to the students.

7. Provide choice in assessment – students have a number of options for how to present an assignment. They could present it using Photobooth, iMovie, X-Mind, Keynote, iPhoto storyboard etc.

8. There is a new search engine named Twurdy www.twurdy.com . This is a play on the name "Too Wordy. " It works by checking out each search result and calculating a readability score for each one. It then color codes the results allowing uses to choose which sites to visit based on how hard or easy each one will be to read. I chose to search worm and received sites color coded <8, 8-10, 10-15, 15-18, 18+

Digital Citizenship
A very good read, from a great educational wiki, about Digital Citizenship.
Educational Origami

Spark Notes

Spark Notes

The Spark Notes website has a lot of good study material, summaries, themes, and heaps more.
In particular the No Fear Shakespeare section is useful with the students having their own laptops and the projectors in the rooms.
The No Fear Shakespeare section has unabridged versions of the following plays, as well as character, theme, symbols and setting information.

Antony and Cleopatra

As You Like It

The Comedy of Errors


Henry IV, Part I

Henry IV, Part II

Henry V

Julius Caesar

King Lear


The Merchant of Venice

A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Much Ado About Nothing


Richard III

Romeo and Juliet


The Taming of the Shrew

The Tempest

Twelfth Night