ICYMI What my teachers brought to BYOTopic Tech Tuesday

This week’s Tech Tuesday explored topics of teachers’ own interests.  BYOTopic Tuesdays are often the days that I get a pulse on the technology integration efforts my teachers are making.  It’s a time for reflection and discussion about the challenges teachers face and the enhancements we can make.  Here’s recap of some of the conversations that stuck out.

  • Clips is a great way to produce short videos in less than ten minutes. If you’re on social media, you know that you feeds are dominated now by mini-films, and Clips helps you build your own without a professional marketing team!

    A teacher asked me to show off the Apple Clips app, which I’ve used recently to showcase great things going on in our classrooms.  Check out videos produced by the Clips app I produced when I visited a science classroom using Vernier equipment and a Project Lead the Way (PLTW) classroom using AppInventor on our Promethean ActivPanels.  Clips is a nifty little creation that simplifies the video editing experience.  The design feels like Instagram while allowing users to take advantage of Siri’s language processing to transcribe videos into on-screen text, too!  Unfortunately, our old iPads are too old to support the new iOS and thus the new Clips app; so our staff will have to use a newer iPhone to take advantage of Clips.  We explored an alternative for Android devices called Quik, which is produced for free by GoPro.

  • Another teacher asked about Schoology submissions not being viewable in the Chrome app on our Promethean ActivPanels.  I demonstrated how to use the Request Desktop Site setting in Chrome to load the plugin that’s responsible for viewing submissions. I love using Schoology in the Chrome app instead of the mobile app on our ActivPanels + ActivConnect Gs because the pages look the way students view them on their Macs.  However, there are some plugins that aren’t supported in an Android-based operating system.  Fortunately, Chrome still supports some of those plugins when using the Request Desktop.  I posted a how-to on YouTube a few weeks ago that demonstrates how this feature helps teachers using Schoology on an ActivPanel.

  • Finally, I got to geek out on some of Schoology’s great features.  One tech-savvy teacher who learned how to build HTML pages/webquests a number of years back still has some great custom-built webpages she wanted to use with students.  She was sending the .html files via Schoology download, but I showed her how Schoology supports HTML natively in a Resource they call Pages.  The little-known feature of viewing the HTML for all types of resources is under-exercised by those who know a little about HTML.  By clicking on the two vertical dots : in the rich text editor, Schoology teachers can drop HTML code directly onto the page!  So, say goodbye to downloads of old webquests when you can code them directly into Schoology pages!  Check out the screenshot below for a better view since Schoology under-documents this advanced feature.
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