Into the Driver's Seat
212.6K views | +74 today
Follow
 
Scooped by Jim Lerman
onto Into the Driver's Seat
Scoop.it!

9 Of The Best Free & Low-Cost Alternatives To Microsoft Office | makeuseof

9 Of The Best Free & Low-Cost Alternatives To Microsoft Office | makeuseof | Into the Driver's Seat | Scoop.it

By Aaron Couch

 

"Microsoft Office has dominated the market of text documents, spreadsheets and slide shows for years, and for good reason – it’s one of the very best. However, there’s one drawback and that is the price. Sure, it’s a relatively good investment, but for one reason or another you choose to not pay for it. What do you do?

 

"Thankfully, there are other options – and good ones. These range from web-based apps and local software to free and paid. Although some do cost, all have free options and the price you pay for the paid software is a fraction of what you would pay for Microsoft Office. Through this article I will touch upon any unique features such as mobile capability, cost, user interface and compatibility with Microsoft Office files."

more...
Donna Browne's curator insight, February 5, 2013 9:28 AM

I have been using Open Office for many years with good results.  Also try

the Ipad app OnLive Desktop which provides access to Office programs free of charge.  It is available free at the App Store. 

Into the Driver's Seat
Building the independence of learners through thoughtful uses of technology
Curated by Jim Lerman
Your new post is loading...
Your new post is loading...
Rescooped by Jim Lerman from :: The 4th Era ::
Scoop.it!

A Hero For The Arts And Sciences: Upcoming Marvel Covers Promote STEAM Fields

A Hero For The Arts And Sciences: Upcoming Marvel Covers Promote STEAM Fields | Into the Driver's Seat | Scoop.it
Last week, the publisher unveiled the last of five special covers featuring disciplines that guide school curricula nationwide — Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math, also known as STEAM. It's part of an effort, the company says, to encourage young readers to double-down on their studies and explore fields said to lead to better jobs.

"We plan to continue to motivate our fans to explore their passions in the fields of science, technology, engineering, art, and math and present these disciplines through some of our favorite young heroes who are doing just that — following their dreams and preparing for the challenges that await them ahead," David Gabriel, Senior VP for Sales & Marketing of Marvel Comics said in a statement.

Available in November, the covers are alternative prints of several titles. Famous heroes such as the Hulk and Spiderman make appearances. So do lesser-knowns Gwenpool — an amalgam of Spiderman's Gwen Stacy and meta-jokester Deadpool — and kid genius Moongirl.

The covers also coincide with the debut of Marvel's new Iron Man, Riri Williams, a 15-year-old engineering prodigy, who is also featured.
more...
Jim Lerman's curator insight, Today, 5:47 PM

Article covers quite a bit of activity in the media space around support for STEM. Lots of good info.

Scooped by Jim Lerman
Scoop.it!

17 Teacher Tech Tools for High Quality Project-Based Learning - Getting Smart by Guest Author - Buck Institute for Education, Project-based learning, tech tools

17 Teacher Tech Tools for High Quality Project-Based Learning - Getting Smart by Guest Author - Buck Institute for Education, Project-based learning, tech tools | Into the Driver's Seat | Scoop.it

""To support good Project Based Learning (PBL), the Buck Institute for Education (BIE) recently created a model of Gold Standard Project Based Teaching Practices. These seven practices describe what teachers need to know and be able to do to make projects the “main thing” in their classroom.  

17 Tech Tools for High Quality Project-Based Learning

Teachers can use a variety of tech tools to translate each of the following Gold Standard Teaching Practices into rich and rigorous projects."  

Jim Lerman's insight:

Numerous excellent resources here.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Jim Lerman
Scoop.it!

16 Ideas for Student Projects using Google Docs, Slides, and Forms

16 Ideas for Student Projects using Google Docs, Slides, and Forms | Into the Driver's Seat | Scoop.it
As you probably know, Google Drive is far more than a place to store files online. It also includes a suite of versatile creation tools, many of which perform the same functions as the ones we use in other spaces. These include Google Docs, a word processing program that behaves similarly to Microsoft Word, Google Slides, a presentation program similar to PowerPoint, and Google Forms, a survey-creation tool similar to Survey Monkey. Although Drive also includes other tools, these three are particularly useful for creating rigorous, academically robust projects. If your school uses Google Classroom or at least gives students access to Google Drive, your students are probably already using these tools to write papers or create slideshow presentations, but there are other projects they could be doing that you may not have thought of.

Below I have listed 16 great ideas for projects using Google Docs, Slides, and Forms. (If you and your students want to learn more about how to use these apps, check out my Google Drive Basics course; more info at the end of this post!)
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Jim Lerman
Scoop.it!

8 Tips for Teachers Using Google Cardboard in School - Class Tech Tips

Earlier this summer I shared a post on 5 Apps to Use with Google Cardboard (read it here). It’s been super popular and I wanted to share eight tips for teachers who are using Google Cardboard in school this year. On this list you’ll find a handful of things you may not know about Google Cardboard and a few ways to take your use of this super cool tool to the next level.

Brand new to using Google Cardboard in school?
Google Cardboard is a special viewer that is used with a smartphone. Kids can look through the viewfinder and take part in virtual reality experiences. There are apps for iOS and Android devices making it great for BYOD (bring your own device) learning environments. You can use just one Google Cardboard in your classroom and have students take turns diving in a coral reef or peeking at the Great Wall of China.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Jim Lerman
Scoop.it!

7 Ways Pythonroom Makes Starting A Coding Class Easy - Class Tech Tips

Thinking about starting a coding class? Not sure if you know enough about computer science to host your own coding class? The folks at Pythonroom have created a fantastic online platform for teachers who want to bring coding into the classroom but… don’t know how to code. Hiring a computer science teacher or training teachers on computer science might be a challenge for your school. Pythonroom was designed for teachers with no prior coding experience and it’s easy to get started.
more...
No comment yet.
Rescooped by Jim Lerman from Virtual Reality & Augmented Reality Network
Scoop.it!

Interactive 3D Content from Lifeliqe: 1,000 Augmented Reality Models - Class Tech Tips

Interactive 3D Content from Lifeliqe: 1,000 Augmented Reality Models - Class Tech Tips | Into the Driver's Seat | Scoop.it
Have you used virtual reality in your classroom? Well if you’re ready to take it to the next level you’ll want to check out the interactive 3D content from Lifeliqe. Teachers can use augmented reality with Lifeliqe – every single one of their 1,000 models has an AR view, where you can either capture the model in the environment, or swap the camera and take a selfie or interact with the model yourself. With this tool, teachers can now integrate three-dimensional models in a digital format instead of the two-dimensional images students are used to seeing in traditional textbooks.

I’m a big fan of augmented reality and virtual reality so it’s been especially exciting to see all of the innovation in this space over the past year. Teachers who use Lifeliqe can drag and drop the interactive models right into a presentation, ebook or lesson plan. It’s a great option for educators looking to create engaging, interactive 3D experiences for their students.
more...
No comment yet.
Rescooped by Jim Lerman from :: The 4th Era ::
Scoop.it!

Voice Recognition Software Finally Beats Humans At Typing, Study Finds

Voice Recognition Software Finally Beats Humans At Typing, Study Finds | Into the Driver's Seat | Scoop.it

"Computers have already beaten us at chess, Jeopardy and Go, the ancient board game from Asia. And now, in the raging war with machines, human beings have lost yet another battle — over typing.

Turns out voice recognition software has improved to the point where it is significantly faster and more accurate at producing text on a mobile device than we are at typing on its keyboard. That's according to a new study by Stanford University, the University of Washington and Baidu, the Chinese Internet giant. The study ran tests in English and Mandarin Chinese."

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Jim Lerman
Scoop.it!

A School Replaces Curriculum with Exploration

A School Replaces Curriculum with Exploration | Into the Driver's Seat | Scoop.it
A School Without Multiple Choice

The Agile Learning Center (ALC) rejects basing education on rote memorization and standardized test preparation. In fact, there is no standard curriculum at ALC, nor are there distinct classes grouped by ages. Instead, students learn what they want when they want. One group of students might devote time to learning code in order to create a video game, while another might want to write and act in their own theatrical production. Perhaps one group simply wants to play with hula-hoops. All are acceptable and encouraged at ALC, which currently has one location in Manhattan and four others in the U.S. and Puerto Rico.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Jim Lerman
Scoop.it!

A Preview of Our Hats & Ladders Career App Demo

A Preview of Our Hats & Ladders Career App Demo | Into the Driver's Seat | Scoop.it

Description by EdSurge

 

"What’s the First Lady’s favorite edtech tool? Today, it’s likely ThinkZone Games, the grand prize winner of theReach Higher Career App Challenge. In a YouTube video, Michelle Obama describes how ThinkZone’s Hats & Ladders appcaught her eye: “Their game-based app—Hats & Ladders—helps middle and high school students explore a variety of careers through self-assessments, fun activities, and mini-challenges. It’s a cool, exciting app that will open up a whole new world for our young people.”

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Jim Lerman
Scoop.it!

Inside ‘Room 21C’: This Iowa Classroom’s Redesign Inspired Seven Other Districts (EdSurge News)

Inside ‘Room 21C’: This Iowa Classroom’s Redesign Inspired Seven Other Districts (EdSurge News) | Into the Driver's Seat | Scoop.it
Designing a New Sort of Classroom: Research and Development

Imagine a learning space that puts students, literally, in the center, so that there is no front of the room (making it difficult to lecture); no single projection screen that “all” would watch (making learning more individualized and engaging); and an environment without rows or individual student desks (encouraging collaboration and teamwork). By changing the space, we could drive the shift in instructional practice, and re-design learning. There would be movement, noise, and students completing different tasks at different times.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Jim Lerman
Scoop.it!

26 Ways to Foster a Transformative Maker Culture

26 Ways to Foster a Transformative Maker Culture | Into the Driver's Seat | Scoop.it
The idea behind the Maker movement includes allowing students to imagine, envision, create, innovate, play, learn in a formative manner, experiment, collaborate, share, and most of all dream of possibilities. The idea of making is really not a new concept. In fact,the art of making is at the root and mixed into to the very fabric of our culture. I believe that the amazing innovation we have seen in this country is due to a Maker mentality. We have long been a culture set on dreaming up possibilities, and then taking the action to make it happen. The initial growth of technology has somewhat taken some of our creativity and produced  consumption based thinking. We are now past the initial way of thinking, and the Makers movement allows people to finally use the technology to create and make. As you set up or evaluate the Maker movement in your school or district I ask you to think about the ten ideas I have below. Use them as a vetting procedure or a filter. I also invite you to discover some amazing resources that might fit into your Maker culture. Enjoy the journey as you Make possibilities for your students!
Jim Lerman's insight:

Don't miss the numerous great suggestions, apps, and other resources included in this article!

more...
No comment yet.
Rescooped by Jim Lerman from Cultivating Creativity
Scoop.it!

Knowmia Teach

Knowmia Teach | Into the Driver's Seat | Scoop.it
Knowmia Teach is a tool for capturing teacher- or student-created videos on an iPad. Users can create slides that include images, diagrams, or text and then record themselves as they speak, draw, use a pointer, and otherwise walk viewers through their slides. Resulting videos (which can be up to 15 minutes long) are then stored on the developer’s website. Videos can be viewed only by other registered users of Knowmia.com, and users can control who can view their videos with strict privacy-control tools. 

Knowmia Teach PRO costs $29.99, although it’s often on sale for $14.99. Premium features in the PRO version include options for recording while the presenter views a website (like a video, for example, in which the presenter gives a tour of a website and its contents), and for uploading videos to the device’s camera roll or YouTube.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Jim Lerman
Scoop.it!

Sketch Guru - Handy Sketch Pad

Sketch Guru - Handy Sketch Pad | Into the Driver's Seat | Scoop.it

Description by Common Sense Education

 

"Sketch Guru - Handy Sketch Pad has the quality sketch tools you'd pay to use, so it's too bad the ads can be so distracting. The black and neon art screen looks more like an '80s video game than a serious sketching app -- but that is quite misleading! Within the app, the brushes work beautifully, and users can create sketches with the quality of a paper sketch pad. For teachers, the movie option is especially helpful. Create a sketch to demonstrate a technique and then play the movie for the class. Students will see step by step, in movie format, how the teacher created the work. You can easily share sketches via email or social media, or save them to the device. Sketch Guru - Handy Sketch Pad does not have the professional-level features of SketchPad Pro, but for a free option (and the annoyance of ads), users can explore and create easily."

 

 

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Jim Lerman
Scoop.it!

This Unusual Japanese Technique Will Radically Improve Your Presentations

This Unusual Japanese Technique Will Radically Improve Your Presentations | Into the Driver's Seat | Scoop.it
Most presenters fall short when it comes to engaging audiences while driving home their point. Too many slides, the wrong kinds of slides, rambling, lack of an objective and a weak argument are just a few of the presentation sins most speakers commit.

PechaKucha, a weird Japanese presentation technique devised by Tokyo architects Astrid Klein and Mark Dytham can help. They came up with the idea because “Architects talk too much! Give a microphone and some images to an architect — or most creative people for that matter — and they’ll go on forever! Give PowerPoint to anyone else and they have the same problem.” PechaKucha’s basic message is a piece of advice I’ve been giving to presenters for years: the less you say the more valuable your presentation becomes.

PechaKucha (Japanese for “chit chat”) forces you to speak more concisely, precisely and clearly by allowing just 20 slides. Yup, 20 slides. Oh, and you only get 20 seconds to present each slide. An auto forward control ensures there’s no request for “next slide” or “please go back.” Also called a 20×20 presentation, PechaKucha gives you just 6 minutes and 40 seconds to deliver your presentation. Every second is precious which means you can radically tighten-up your presentation skills or fail. It’s high pressure, but it’s also a great learning ground.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Jim Lerman
Scoop.it!

Getting Started with Genius Hour

Getting Started with Genius Hour | Into the Driver's Seat | Scoop.it
When it comes to Genius Hour, you may be like a lot of teachers: You love the idea of Genius Hour (or 20 Percent Time), the notion of setting aside time every week for students to pursue their own interests, to follow their passions, to create their own original products and share what they’ve learned.

But that’s where you stop.

Because HOW? How do you actually DO Genius Hour?

How do you introduce it to students? How do you grade Genius Hour projects? What do you do about students who can’t figure out what they want to study?

Is it chaotic? Is it messy? Is there some kind of record-keeping system?

How do you fit it into your already bursting schedule?

Wouldn’t it be nice if someone could guide you through the process? If an experienced teacher who had actually done Genius Hour and helped other teachers implement it in their classrooms could show you exactly what to do?

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Jim Lerman
Scoop.it!

Create Videos in Minutes with Mysimpleshow :: Cult of Pedagogy

Create Videos in Minutes with Mysimpleshow :: Cult of Pedagogy | Into the Driver's Seat | Scoop.it
Videos are becoming such important tools for teachers, but one thing that stops many of us from using videos is making them: With all the other things we have to do, there’s very little time to find the right video creation tool, learn how to use it, then actually create the videos.

If you want to get started quickly, or if you’ve already been creating videos but are ready for something new, mysimpleshow may be the perfect tool for you. In just a few minutes, you can create a student-friendly, HD-quality video that explains any concept you can imagine, then publish it right away, and it’s totally free.
more...
No comment yet.