Weekly 6 (3rd week of October)

New feature: Stro’s Weekly 6 (six things I’m thinking about or trying out this week)

  1. Pecha Kuch I didn’t get to attend the fall ITEC conference this year, but I’ve been following the Twitter feed and #pechakucha was a hashtagged on many tweets. Out of curiosity, I did a little digging and discovered Pecha Kucha is a presentation format featuring 20 slides, timed at 20 seconds each. The idea is to keep things moving! We’re going to try this out in Tech Lab this year. Perhaps end of the semester presentations on targeted topics? Still pondering.
  2. ToonyTool  I found this on Richard Byrne’s FreeTech4Teachers blog. It’s a simple, single frame comic creator. No login or account required. You can create and print, save as a graphic, email it to someone (or yourself) or share it online. I’d like to use this as an end-of-class “check point.”  I’d have students create a simple cartoon illustrating one key concept from class.
  3. RIPL is a new app I downloaded to create interesting graphics for Istagram. RIPL combines text with images using pre-set templates (most using animations to draw attention).
  4. Friends Memes: we didn’t have Tech Lab last week. This week, one of my students said she wanted to publish her blog, timed to the minute rossonbreakbefore it was due, with the tag “sorry this is last minute: we were on a break!” This is the Ross Geller meme from Friends. Friends aired from 1994-2004 (one of the most watched sitcoms of the early 2000s) so it was much more my generation than my students! It’s had a resurgence in popularity thanks to Netflix.
  5. Weather: this week in Cedar Rapids temps hit the 80s. According to KCRG News, “at the Eastern Iowa Airport, the high has hit at least 80 degrees on October 17 only five times since 1953. The last time it happened was in 1971! The record high for Cedar Rapids is 86 degrees, which happened in 1950. (Before 1953, records for Cedar Rapids occurred in a different location.)”
  6. GooseChase: I had to be off campus last week during Tech Lab; so we did an online team-based scavenger hunt using GooseChase. I set up 14 challenges, ranging from snapping a photo of their assigned school noting technology used in cooperating classrooms, to writing a 3 sentence synopsis or example of growth mindset to sharing their “tweet of the week.”  Things I learned: you can’t post a saved photo. Within the app, you can take a photo for immediate posting, but cannot access your photo library. The free version is limited to 5 individuals or teams (unlimited people can join teams). I set up teams, but it’s not evident yet if the system captures the individual user names as they contribute to the team. I think there is enough here to explore more. Anyone else using this?
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