“Flippity is my favorite place to find templates for creating neat things in Google Sheets. A MadLibs story generator is one of the cool templates you'll find on Flippity. Flippity's MadLibs template lets you create a series of MadLibs-style stories for your students to complete online (see a demo here).To create a MadLibs-style story generator first select the template on the Flippity homepage. Then you'll be asked to make a copy of the template in your Google Sheets account. Once you've made the copy you can edit the template by writing your own stories into the spreadsheet cells. To define variables, those are the parts your students will complete, simply place brackets around the words "verb, noun, adjective, place, name, or number." For example, if I want students to fill in a noun in the story I'd write [noun] in the spreadsheet cell in which I'm creating my story. When your completed work is published your students will see something like this on which they'll complete the MadLibs story.”
Via Jim Lerman
“My suspicion is that “empathy” will turn out to be the wrong word to describe what separates V.R. from the medium of film. Think, for example, about certain ways the first-person perspective of V.R. actually limits what we see. Humans have evolved a complex apparatus for detecting the emotional states of others by intuitively assessing the micromuscular movements of the face. The paradox of V.R. is that when you see the world through someone else’s eyes, you can’t actually see the person’s eyes. You can see what the person is seeing, but it’s much harder to grasp what he or she is feeling. A cinematic close-up conveys emotional depth far more effectively than a point-of-view shot in a 360-degree film can. What V.R. does provide is so new that we don’t really have a word for it: perceptual empathy, sensory immersion.”
Via Jim Lerman
Apple today released iOS 10, the latest version of its operating system for mobile devices such as the iPad and iPhone. This post is a quick review of some of the most significant enhancements to the accessibility support in iOS 10, starting with a brand new feature called Magnifier.
After writing about iPad apps for elementary teachers, we are sharing with you today a list designed specifically for our colleagues teaching in high school. Of course there are tons of good educational iPad apps out there but limiting our list to only 10 titles forces us to selectively feature what we believe, based on our long app reviewing experience, are some of the best iPad apps for high school teachers. Have a look and, as always, your feedback is much appreciated.
New U.K. research from has found that make-believe fantasy play could boost children's creative thinking. Carried out by researchers from Oxford Brookes University, the team presented their findings at the British Psychological Society's Developmental Psychology Section annual conference in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
In one local district, students can travel to Ancient Egypt and back, sans time machine or permission slip.
Montour High School in Robinson, Penn., is home to a “virtual immersion lab” where computers come equipped with simulation software and styluses. Students need only throw on some 3D glasses—the kind that make animated characters jump at you in movie theaters—to plunge into a world where they can dissect dinosaurs, examine a human eye, or explore the pyramids up close.
When implementing and successfully sustaining a mobile learning initiative, it is imperative not to allow the device to drive instruction. Lessons, curriculum, schools and districts should never be built around technology. Everything we do in education should be built around learning. Thus, if the ultimate goal is to improve student outcomes then the role of any mobile device initiative should be to support or enhance learning.
Creating narrated slideshows is one of the easiest ways to introduce students to digital storytelling practices. Students can create narrated slideshows to illustrate and explain their research findings, to tell a personal story, or to outline the framework for a story that will written down later. The following three iPad apps all provide an easy way to create narrated slideshows.
How can an iPad be used to enhance the school day? Which apps are the best? Nick Dempster, a Year 6 teacher at Linaker Primary School in Southport and an Apple Distinguished Educator shares his experiences.
“ The children have been very interested in maps lately; they create them at our writing table and use them in their dramatic play, refer to printed maps during outside time as they run and ride around on the tricycles, and talk about hiding treasure in our classroom and creating maps to help others find it. They are curious about places in our school and the hallways we need to take to get there. As I reflected upon their genuine in location and maps, I thought it was the perfect time to introduce them to coding. Why coding?”
Via John Evans
“ Educators are always learning. In the classroom with students, at workshops and trainings, through the process of developing and facilitating lessons, and in so many more places educators are constantly building and refining their skills. Often, the skills developed in their day-to-day practice prove to be the most valuable tools for educators. With micro-credentials, educators can now be formally recognized for the skills and competencies they learn throughout their careers. Micro-credentials are research-backed, expert-assessed, representations of learned skills or competencies that can be presented as a digital badge. In partnership with Digital Promise and their micro-credential platform, Maker Ed is excited to share “Getting Started with Making,” a set of six maker education micro-credentials. Maker Ed’s set of micro credentials focuses on six of the skills we believe are crucial to educators looking develop and expand their skills as maker educators. Each credential emphasizes our belief that maker education is most successful, impactful, and sustainable when the needs and interests of learners guide the learning experience. From designing the physical space in which making takes place to choosing the materials with which students will make, maker educators should plan in collaboration with learners. Here are the six credentials, and their key competencies:”
Via John Evans
There are a lot of changes in iOS 10, Apple's latest software update for the iPhone and iPad.
We've already shown you the biggest changes, like the new Messages app and improvements to the lockscreen. But there are plenty of smaller, more hidden features and tricks you probably don't know about.
For instance, did you know that Apple Music can show you song lyrics in iOS 10? Or that Apple Maps can remember where you parked your car?
Here is a list of my favorite fifty books on creativity. Some of these are more on the pop culture side while others are more academic. Some are books I agree with while others are books that I don’t necessarily agree with but still provoked a lot of thought. I hope you find this list helpful.
The popular Book Creator iPad app turns five years old this week. To celebrate its birthday the developers are discounting the app by 50% all week (September 19 – September 25, 2016). The discount even applies to those using the volume purchasing program.
Common Sense Media’s service Graphite, which offers independent ratings and reviews of learning apps and websites, has compiled this list of apps to get young students started on the road to coding. For complete reviews, and for each app’s "Learning Rating," visit the Graphite website.
One of my favorite things about iPads and the web in general is the ease with which anyone can create a multimedia product. Teachers can create and organize multimedia reference materials for students and students can create multimedia products to show off their ideas. The following three iPad apps allow you and your students to create multimedia ebooks.
"The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." - Albert Einstein
We do not need to teach creativity, but rather inspire its daily practice. Somewhere along the way, we simply forgot to honor this innate gift and how to access its power. Our role as educators is to encourage learning experiences that increase the ability to recognize and listen to our inner voice."
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