Tuesday, January 28, 2014


Students and teachers,
Looking for a new presentation tool?  Here's a nice one that is fun and easy to use. It allows you to create animations on each slide and incorporate images and video.  Check out Powtoon in this short demo I made:

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Manually backing up your Moodle course

Moodle courses are backed up automatically twice a week, but there are times that you may want to perform a manual back-up (for example, if you want to save student work at the end of the term).  To do this, click Backup in the Administration block.  Follow the prompts.  

IMPORTANT- in the 3rd step (see image below), when prompted to name the file, change from the default provided (this is because the default files get overwritten by the automated backups).  Name it something like Intro-To-Art-Fall-2013.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Dynamic Landscapes 2014 Request for Prososals

VITA-Learn and VSLA are again presenting the Dynamic Landscapes conference at Champlain College this year (May 15,16). They are currently looking for presenters. As I've mentioned previously, presentations by teachers are important, especially when they feature real work that real students are doing. I would be happy to help you prepare your presentation, or even co-present. If you have something tech-related that you might like to share, please read on...  

Request for Proposals

Dynamic Landscapes 2014

Do, Make, and Create!

Sponsored by VITA-Learn & VSLA
Vermont Information Technology Association for the Advancement of Learning
Vermont School Library Association

VITA-Learn and VSLA are pleased to announce their joint sponsorship of a two-day conference at Champlain College on May 15 & 16, 2014.


“Dynamic Landscapes 2014”

We are looking for a wide variety of applications of effective uses of technology in the classroom and the library, including examples of integration using a wide variety of technology tools and applications.
We are especially interested in your great stories on creating learning with students. Creations for authentic audiences, maker faire projects, demonstrate projects you've done with students, show their work, advice you have on how the project worked and what you'd change next time. Talk about how learning is more vibrant for students, and for you personally.

We are looking for practical as well as cutting edge examples of how technology can facilitate and extend learning in the school environment and beyond.  Listed below are a few examples but don’t let these limit your thinking.

       Projects that incorporate student-centered learning… the student is actively engaged in authentic, purposeful, challenging ways.  Where learning is inquiry based and students are encouraged to explore and discover… supported by meaningful use of technology
       Students as “Makers and Creators”
       Writing for the real world… Creating their own class blog and have a great class website
       Projects where students collaborate with parents, experts and/or community members.
       Share the work of your students (creation for authentic audiences)
       Examples of collaboration beyond the walls of the classroom with other students around the world
       Coding and other simulation ideas (ex. Minecraft, Hour of Code)
       Animation / gaming: Looking for diverse grade levels
       Lego robotics, Green screens, etc.
       And so much more…

Please consider sharing your expertise and experience with your fellow classroom teachers and librarians at Dynamic Landscapes You will receive free admission to the conference on the day you present* and have a chance to network and share ideas with some of Vermont’s finest educators! Write-ups are due no later than February 22, 2014.  The earlier the better!

We are looking for several different types of presentations:

1.              Presentation Format – one hour (This type is our greatest need) – You share your Unit/project/story/idea/knowledge/etc. with the audience, demo the tools, and, as appropriate, engage them in conversation regarding your successes and challenges

2.     Panel - with you as Moderator – one hour – You pick a “hot” topic and invite a panel of 3-5 educators. Involve the audience by “priming them” in your write up. Please be sure to list your panel members as co-presenters.
3.     Collaborative Conversation.  One hour - Use your skills to bring a diverse group of educators together (the audience) to discuss key topics of the day.  Develop a couple of key questions… break your audience into smaller groups, and give them a process to discuss and report out.  Share your work on-line with all Dynamic Landscapes participants. Be certain your write-up clearly reflects the topics to be discussed.
4.     Double Session – two hours – these sessions are often built around a project (using the term very broadly) that someone has done possibly with students.  Typically, the first third of the session is sharing what you did and the remaining two thirds of the time is hands-on learning where you guide participants through using the technology and apps you used with your students. (Limited need for these sessions)
5.     Evening Workshops – three hours Thursday late afternoon/evening – These sessions often (but not always) have equipment tied to them (iPad, Chromebook, etc.). Participants can get a new one or bring their own. These are hands-on sessions where participants learn to use the device with their students often around a theme or project.  These can be aimed at an entry, intermediate or advanced level. We will consider proposals that do not have specific equipment tied to them. Be sure you pick a topic that will attract a broad audience from K-12. (Limited need for these sessions) Since evening workshop presenters are paid they do not get a complementary admission unless thery are also presenting at the regular day conference.

Participants are encouraged to submit multiple proposals.  To do so, just enter information in a new form.

To submit your proposal please go to…

Co-presenters are welcome but only one person gets a complementary admission.*  If you wish to bring students please contact me for additional information.

A computer, projection system, screen and speakers will be provided and rooms will have Internet access.  We do encourage you to bring your own laptop with needed software already installed. Please specify if you have any special equipment or other needs and I will let you know if we are able to accommodate your request.

Write-ups are due no later than February 22, 2014.  I encourage you to have them in well before that if at all possible.  You will be notified soon after the deadline as to the status of your presentation proposal.

This year ALL proposals MUST be submitted on line.  Go to https://sites.google.com/a/vita-learn.org/dynamlands2014rfps/
and follow the links to the submission form.

If you have any questions or you wish to bounce possibilities off me, please do not hesitate to contact me atedbarry101244@gmail.com 



PS:       If you know someone who would be a great presenter, please pass this along. We DO rely on all of you to make this a successful conference. As you all know, our strength is in our Network. Lets put it to work!!

* If you do a double session you will either get a co-presenter in free for the day with you, or you will get two days free admission. Please remember there is a limited need for these double sessions.  In addition, presenters get paid to do evening sessions.  However, since they are being paid, evening sessions presenters do not get a complementary admission to the conference unless you are also presenting during the regular conference.