Monthly Archives: October 2011

Slide Shark PowerPoint Viewer App for the iPad

Slideshark App

I received an email from Brainshark today announcing they have developed a new app that will display PowerPoint (PPT) presentations on the iPad. After you sign up for a free account, you upload the PPT file to the Slideshark website and it converts it into a file that is viewable on the iPad. Slideshark is an alternative to saving a PPT file as a PDF, converting it to a Keynote file, or saving the slides as images.

Below is a description from the app description in iTunes:

With SlideShark you can view and show PowerPoint presentations on your iPad – the way they were meant to be seen. It’s easy to use, powerful, professional, and – best of all – free! SlideShark is the one and only app you can use to accurately and professionally show PowerPoint presentations on an iPad.

Key Features:
• Play PowerPoint files properly on your iPad
• Preserves animations, fonts, graphics, and colors
• Simply tap or swipe to advance animations and slides
• Connect to a TV or VGA-projector to present to larger audiences (iPad 2 users)

Limitations

You are limited to 25mb of storage space which is a very small amount in my opinion. You can purchase additional storage space if you need to keep presentations stored that exceed the 25mb of space. Slideshark indicates there are additional limitations when viewing PPT files using this app:

While the app is optimized for PowerPoint, there are a few features that are not currently supported. These include: hyperlinks on slides, embedded videos or animated gifs, slide transitions, triggers, and 3rd party components. There are also some advanced PowerPoint animations that may not be supported.

If you are looking for an alternative to Keynote to view PPT files on the iPad when speaking or presenting this may be just the thing you have been searching for. With the small amount of space available for uploaded presentations I am not sure how useful this app will be. The app is compatible with devices to project on a TV or screen and you do not need an internet connection to view the PPT file downloaded to the iPad. Feel free to leave a comment below with your opinion on this app once you have used the app.

Classroom 2.0 LIVE! will Return this Saturday

Classroom 2.0 LIVE! will return this Saturday after a brief hiatus for October due to health reasons for each of the co-hosts. We are excited to return this Saturday at our regularly scheduled time of 12pm ET/11am CT/10am MT/9am PT. We appreciate all of the wonderful comments, emails and best wishes from our friends and colleagues while we were on hiatus.

Saturday, October 29th, will be another webinar in our ‘Featured Teacher’ series. Bryan Jackson will talk about web 2.0 mean to him and why he uses web 2.0 tools in his classroom. Bryan Jackson is a high school gifted-education and music teacher in Coquitlam, British Columbia. For five years, he has taught the T.A.L.O.N.S. program, a two-year, interdisciplinary program for identified ring

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Moving to my New Blog

Welcome to my new domain and blog! My new blog will focus on educational technology and hopefully be a treasure trove of resources, new tools and strategies for integrating technology into instruction. I tried a similar blogging venture last November but I don’t think I went about it correctly. This time I started a new blog on my own domain and believe this will be the best move for me personally and professionally. This is the last time I will ask my subscribers to move to a new blog that I started as I know it can be a hassle to change over RSS feeds to various RSS aggregators/ readers.

Since recuperating from back surgery, I will be online more and posting regularly to my blog about technology issues and tools, Classroom 2.0 LIVE, DEN or K12Online Conference events. Stay tuned for more details and I promise this change will be worth your while!

To ease any inconvenience for changing RSS feeds, I am going to offer all subscribers to the new blog an opportunity to win an Amazon gift card! No strings attached – just subscribe to the blog and leave a message in the comment section below this post. One random winner will be chosen on November 1, 2011 and notified via email so make sure you leave that information in your comment on the other blog. Thanks for making this move with me and be sure to click on the pink RSS feed icon or subscribe via email and good luck to you!

*Image: http://www.gettyicons.com/free-icon/156/3d-rss-icon-set/free-pink-rss-feed-icon-png/

Why I Write – National Day on Writing – October 20, 2011

This coming Thursday, October 20, 2011 is National Day on Writing. The National Writing Project is encouraging everyone to participate in a variety of activities to support National Day on Writing.

The urge to write can be a mysterious calling. There are so many different ways to understand not only the why of writing, but what one gets out of it. To celebrate the National Day on Writing, the NWP has joined The New York Times Learning Network and Figment to collect the thoughts of people from all walks of life—scientists, reporters, poets, teachers, and students—to discover why they write.

The National Writing Project, along with the New York Times Learning Network and Figment, is celebrating the why of writing by collecting essays from people from all walks of life, interviewing authors, collecting student essays, spreading the word through Facebook and Twitter—and more—as one way to celebrate the National Day on Writing on October 20.

Ways to Participate

Submit student essays to Figment.com: Figment will be accepting submissions from September 28 through October 29. Since “Why I Write” is a celebration of writing, there are no prizes, but a curated anthology of selected submissions will be available as an e-book later this winter. Submit to Figment.

New York Times Learning Network: The New York Times Learning Network will present a series of interviews with reporters who cover a range of beats and explore their writing process. These interviews will serve as the basis for lesson plans, prompts for students, discussions, and inspiration. More ›

Edutopia: Edutopia will be celebrating “Why I Write” with a series of blogs by NWP writers. Each blog will then invite readers to share why they write with others in the Edutopia community. These conversations will take place on the Edutopia.org website and within our communities on Twitter and Facebook. More ›

NWP Radio: On October 20 at 7 p.m. EST, the National Writing Project will air a live radio show to celebrate the National Day on Writing with interviews with New York Times education reporter Fernanda Santos, New York Times Learning Network editor Katherine Schulten, Figment founder and New Yorker staff writer Dana Goodyear, Figment teen writers, and NWP teacher and author Ashley Hope Perez, among others. More ›

Tweet #whyiwrite: Tweet why you write and include the hashtag #whyiwrite so that everyone can see the many reasons people write. More ›

Post on Facebook: We’d like everyone to post why they write on their Facebook pages on October 20 and encourage others to do so. Let’s create a national dialogue about writing! More ›

Making A Difference Through Conservation Student Webinar

Discovery Education is sponsoring another webinar for students with Animal Planet’s Dave Salmoni on Wednesday, October 19th at 1:30pm ET. Content will focus on grades K-5 and feature information about survival needs for animals and plants, ecosystems and interdependence in habitats. An excerpt from the Discovery Education website follows:

Dave Salmoni, Animal Planet’s apex predator expert and host of a number of Animal Planet and Discovery Channel programs including Into the Pride and Into the Lions Den, will teach students about the relationship between animals, humans and the environment and how with their help in protecting the environment, we can ensure the well-being of our earth’s creatures. Students will also learn more about the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge, a premier national sustainability challenge that empowers students in grades K-12 to develop and share environmental solutions that can help change the world. Students will feel inspired to make a difference.

To learn more about Dave Salmoni, click here.

The webinar will be about an hour in length.

Click here to REGISTER for this event. The webinar is free for anyone to attend and interact with Dave Salmoni. A downloadable lesson plan is available on the webinar announcement page here. You have to register at the site to download/view the lesson plan. Feel free to leave me a comment if you have trouble accessing the PDF lesson plan.

The K12 Online Conference Wants You!

I missed much of the initial planning for the 2011 K12 Online Conference due to my back surgery so I am playing catch up. This year’s FREE online conference will take place the weeks of November 28th and December 5th, 2011, with a pre-conference keynote on Monday, November 21st.

We are looking for participants to volunteer to assist with the conference as well submit a proposal to present a 20 minute pre-recorded video presentation that fits one of the four strands of the conference:

Strands are as follows:

Sandbox Play – Just as children need a sandbox to explore and playtime to learn together and try out new ideas, we as teachers need sandboxes to try new things, risk, and sometimes fail in safe and collegial spaces on the web. Presentations in this strand will be appropriate for beginners new to the use of technology in the classroom. Jose Rodriguez is the strand convener.

Story Time – Everyone loves story time. Presentations in this strand will focus less on communicating large amounts of information and more on sharing compelling stories about the effective uses of technology to increase student engagement, global collaboration, and improve learning. Darren Kuropatwa is the strand convener.

Team Captains – Playgrounds and schools need good leaders. Presentations in this strand will address key leadership issues for visionary school leaders. Students, teachers, administrators, parents, and community members all play important leadership roles in the school community. Wesley Fryer is the strand convener.

Level Up – In games, players ‘level up’ or gain ‘experience points’ by completing quests, overcoming obstacles, and for successful role-playing. Those who have taken student learning to new levels of engagement with technology will share their expertise. Ginger Lewman is the strand convener.

Proposals are still being accepted and we hope that you respond to our 2011 call for proposals. Proposals will be accepted from every country and continent until October 17th so don’t delay and submit your presentation proposal today!

Our slate of keynote speakers is almost finalized and we will be announcing those individuals soon!

Please answer our 2011 call for volunteers to pitch in an assist with the conference! Remember to follow K-12 Online on Twitter (@k12online) and like us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/k12online) to stay updated!

Please plan to join in our conference learning in late November and early December for “purposeful play!”

Be a Part of the 2011 K12 Online Conference – Purposeful Play

As one of the K12 Online Conference organizers, I am asking my PLN members to volunteer to assist the organizers and co-conveners and/or submit a proposal to present for the online conference. The conference co-conveners are as follows:

Wes Fryer – Team Captains
Jose Rodriguez – Sandbox Play
Darren Kuropatwa – Story Time
Ginger Lewman – Level Up

Sandbox Play – Just as children need a sandbox to explore and playtime to learn together and try out new ideas, we as teachers need sandboxes to try new things, risk, and sometimes fail in safe and collegial spaces on the web. Presentations in this strand will be appropriate for beginners new to the use of technology in the classroom. Jose Rodriguez is the strand convener.

Story Time – Everyone loves story time. Presentations in this strand will focus less on communicating large amounts of information and more on sharing compelling stories about the effective uses of technology to increase student engagement, global collaboration, and improve learning. Darren Kuropatwa is the strand convener.

Team Captains – Playgrounds and schools need good leaders. Presentations in this strand will address key leadership issues for visionary school leaders. Students, teachers, administrators, parents, and community members all play important leadership roles in the school community. Wesley Fryer is the strand convener.

Level Up – In games, players ‘level up’ or gain ‘experience points’ by completing quests, overcoming obstacles, and for successful role-playing. Those who have taken student learning to new levels of engagement with technology will share their expertise. Ginger Lewman is the strand convener.

This year’s FREE online conference will take place the weeks of November 28th and December 5th, 2011, with a pre-conference keynote on Monday, November 21st.

The 2011 theme is, “Purposeful Play.” Educators and students worldwide are invited to respond to our 2011 call for proposals. Presenters create twenty minute, engaging video presentations shared during our two week conference. Please check out some of last year’s presentations. Not sure what the conference theme “Purposeful Play” includes? Bud Hunt provided a great description on his blog. “To play on purpose is to take risks.  To challenge what you know.  To ride the edge between what is and what might be, what never was and what should’ve been. How are you making time for play in your learning? And we mean “play” in the best sense of the word.  Fiddle.  Tinker.  Explore.  Discover.  Try.  Fail.  Reengage. “

The pre-conference keynote will be published on Monday, November 21st. Week 1 conference presentations (Story Time and Team Captains strands) will be published the week of November 28 – December 2. Week 2 conference presentations (Sandbox and Level Up) will be published the week of December 5 – 9.

Since the conference dates are later in the year, our proposal submission deadline has been extended to Monday, October 17th. Please consider submitting a proposal and encouraging others you know to submit proposals using our Google form. Full details about the conference (including strand descriptions) are available on our August Call for Proposals post. Selections will be announced October 28th.

Our slate of keynote speakers is almost finalized and we will be announcing those individuals soon!

Please answer our 2011 call for volunteers to pitch in an assist with the conference! Remember to follow K-12 Online on Twitter (@k12online) and like us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/k12online) to stay updated!

Please plan to join in our conference learning in late November and early December for “purposeful play!”

                                                     above except taken from K12 Online Conference blog