Thursday, April 17, 2014

Socrative student response system

I've written before about PollEverywhere, which allows students to use their phones (or any internet-
connected device) to answer questions (and allows the teacher to see the results immediately--and display them, if desired).  This type of student response system is excellent for doing a quick check-in for understanding, taking a poll, or posting students' text responses to the screen.

There's another app out there that is geared more towards the educational setting.  It's called Socrative.  You can use it for "on the fly" type of questioning, quizzes including different types of questions, or exit tickets. We saw it in action on a recent visit to Burlington HS.  The teacher was looking at the results in real-time on his iPad as students worked their way through a formative assessment he had created. This is definitely worth trying.  It is free (for now, at least).

I'd be happy to help you get started!

Here's a quick look:

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

PowerPoints in Google Drive

As you probably know, two popular choices for presentations are Google Presentations and Microsoft PowerPoint.  Google Presentations are great because they are so easy to collaborate on and share.  One reason that you might use PowerPoint,. however, would be if you needed to incorporate sound or advanced animations in the presentation.  The question then is, how do I share my PowerPoint?

Answer: you can use Google Drive to store and share PowerPoints, without converting them into Google Presentations. So, if you have a PowerPoint that has embedded sound or other special elements that aren't available in Google Presentations, here's how you can share them:

1. Open Google Drive and click on the Settings icon (looks like a gear).

2. From there, choose "Confirm settings before each upload" as shown.

You will only need to this once and the settings will stick.

3. Click the upload icon to upload your PowerPoint.
4. Find your file and upload it.  You will get the message shown below.  Do not check the box that says "Convert documents..."

5. You can now share the file as you would any Google doc.  For the people on the other end to have the full effect (including sound, for example), they will need to download it, using the arrow icon shown.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Posting via the phone

I'm just trying out the Blogger app for iOS. Here's some old technology I found in my office

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Editing video in the cloud (WeVideo and YouTube)

I recently posted about sharing video.  A question that I'm often asked is what tool to use for editing video.  Certainly, iMovie is popular on Macs and you can use Windows MovieMaker on PCs.  For more sophisticated editing, head over to the media lab (118) and work with Adobe Premiere Elements.

But did you know that you can edit video in the cloud?   There are two web-based solutions you should know about.  The first is WeVideo.  It's completely cloud-based and you can link it to your Google Drive to store and share videos.  Check out this quick demo I just made in WeVideo:

Here's an overview from WeVideo

The other web-based tool is the YouTube video editor.  It's quite basic, but will allow you to combine videos and do simple editing.

Here's a how-to.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Google Tools for Schools summer courses

Here's another summer opportunity.  Google Tools for Schools is taught by local educators who really know their way around Google Apps in the classroom.  More info is here.

Sharing video from your phone or tablet

Have you ever used your phone or table to record video, then gotten stuck sharing it?
Frustrated with trying to email video to yourself, only to have it broken up into small clips?  
There’s a better way!

Use Google Drive.


  1. Download the (free) Google Drive app. (iOS , Android)
  2. To sign into Drive with your school Google account, see IT to set your password (if you haven’t already).  You can also use a personal Google account.
  3. In the Drive app, click the + sign to upload.
  4. Choose the video from your Camera Roll.

You can share right from the app, but only with specific people (to do this, click on the grey “i” icon, then Sharing).  
If you want to share with “anyone with the link” (which is how I prefer to do it), just hop on a computer, log into Google Drive and do it from there.

Drive ipad.png

Remember-- you can store and share any kind of file in Google Drive.  One nice thing about putting video there is that it plays right in the browser (just like YouTube).

Questions?  See Charlie in 127 or