Since most of us are on the education route, this assignment has to do with using technology/online resources to supplement or improve student learning.
The Activity: Think of something you want to incorporate into your classroom. Maybe it’s finding a fun way for the students to practice concepts. Maybe it’s a way to better communicate with parents. Maybe it’s making a piece of equipment that would be useful in your classroom. After you identify a problem/improvement that can be addressed, start searching for solutions.
Post your problem/improvement, what you found to address it, and how you would use it in your classroom. Link to any products, software, or plans that you want to use. If you’re able to, go ahead and test the plan out and let us know how it goes.
Points: 10 pts. Tag: #techclass
I recently got a position at a school that is a tad bit secluded. Because of the seclusion, many students travel, and they travel often. Whether it’s for sports, hunting, or vacation, I was told that many of the students will be gone periodically. This made me think of ideas for how to make my class available to these students. I have had experience with Google Classroom in the past, and I thought that would be a good thing to do. That way, students would be able to log into the class and get any materials or notes that we did. However, I started to think that may not be enough.
I started thinking of posting YouTube videos to my Google Class to help explain things. I’ve done that in the past, but sometimes, it’s hard to find a video that covers exactly how I would explain something or a video that works through a problem detailed enough. That’s when I thought “Why don’t I make my own YouTube videos and post them to my classroom?” I started researching how YouTube channels like Khan Academy make their videos. I found that the type of video is called a whiteboard screencast. I started looking into the software and devices I would need to make comparable videos…and it was expensive. So, I started looking on forums and searching for cheaper alternatives.
I ended up going to Best Buy and getting and Wacom Intuos Draw Tablet for $80.00. I tried out the drawing software that comes with the tablet, but I didn’t like it because there was very little space to draw, and all the tool bars took up most of the screen. Back to the forums.
I found some drawing software that looked promising, such as Krita and Leonardo. Krita looked like it was a little more complex than what I needed, but Leonardo looked perfect. I loved the infinite canvas feature and small tool bars (that you could hide if you wanted). Unfortunately, Leonardo was not available for Mac yet. Ugh. So, back to searching the forums.
I finally found Mischief in the app store. For $25.00, it wasn’t too expensive, but I wanted to make sure I liked the program before I spent money on it (I didn’t know there was a free version at the time). I looked up videos on YouTube to see demos of the program. I decided to buy it. I plugged in my tablet and tried it out. So far, I like it. It’s simple and has that infinite canvas feature that I wanted.
Now, I just needed to figure out how to record my screencasts. I have Quicktime built into my computer, and I’ve used it for screencasting before. I’ve had pretty good results with it. So, I think I’m just going to stick with Quicktime for my screencasts. I don’t need to worry about only recording a portion of the screen because, with Mischief, I can make it to where the whole screen is white and free of tool bars. For the editing, I’m just going to use iMovie (another built in program). So, I was able to get all the tools I’d need for whiteboard screencasting for about $105.00. Kind of pricey, but all and all not too bad compared to how much I could have spent.
Grading Myself: I think I deserve 10/10 points because I outlined my problem, discussed my solution, and outlined a plan, linking all the software/devices.