This issue of ICTEDUMAG is proudly brought to you by Learning with Technologies
Create a beat with Specdrums!
A full review on the latest Sphero innovation 'Specdrums'.
Can Your Students Explain Everything?
Learn how to use Explain Everything in your classroom.
Empowering Teachers to Innovate with Technology
News, updates, resources & lesson ideas ready to use today
WHAT DO YOUR STUDENTS DO ONLINE?
Student Digital Habits Survey
The results are in. Find out what your students are doing online in their own time.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Supercharge Google Slides
Learn how you and your students can be Internet Awesome
Can Your Students Explain Everything?
Student Digital Habits Survey
The results are in. What are our students doing online in their own time?
ISSUE 8 / AUGUST 2019
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What's new at EduTech 2019
Find out the latest tech gadgets for learning
Mapping Mash Up
Learn to mash up your mapping skills like a boss! #nextlevel
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G Suite Updates
Catch up with what's new
Top 5 Chrome Extensions
Top 5 Chrome Extensions to enhance your Chrome browser
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A new school term and without the distraction of end of year reports and Christmas shenanigans, this is often seen as the 'doing' term. So jump into this issue and find lots of lesson ideas to get doing!
One thing we are passionate about at ICT EDU MAG is using technology to modify and redefine learning in ways that were not previously conceivable (think SAMR). But more importantly, teachers must constantly ask themselves: "Why am I using tech in this particular lesson?" If a teacher cannot justify the ways that tech actually enhances the lesson (e.g. collaboration, amplifying student voice, autonomy, differentiation, providing an audience) then they shouldn't be using the tech! Gratuitous use of tech in classrooms gives us all a bad name. If you're a reader of this magazine (clearly you are), continue your great work and remember to keep asking the 'why?'
Enjoy Issue #8 as we see the end of the Aussie winter in our sights.
Marty & Tser Lin
Tser Lin Hetherton
HEAD OF DESIGN
Tser Lin Hetherton
ICT Edu Magazine
PO BOX 3035
Tser Lin Hetherton
Technology in Education
FROM THE EDITORS
Importing questions from existing Forms is about to make your life easier.
Those of us who appreciate and harness the power of Google Forms regularly are very happy with this little update. When making a new Form, you now have the option of ‘importing’ questions from other Forms. #timesaver
As a teacher, you are often repeating a particular type of question with the same responses. With this new feature, you can mix and match questions from previously created Forms to speed things up.
The new 'Grades' tab in Classroom gives teachers an alternative view of students and assignments.
You will now notice ‘Grades’ alongside Stream, Classwork and People. This new tab allows teachers to see an overview of all students and all grades in a grid view. It very much resembles the old analogue gradebook we use to have pre-computers! Names are down the side and assignments across the top.
Even if you don't assign grades to many assignments (like me), it can still provide a concise overview of which assignments have not been turned in by particular students.
G SUite updates
This issue's techie brekkie highlights 3 easy tools you can get using this week.
We feature Google Maps latest tool, Timelapse, as well as a creative way to use the common language of Scratch. Plus a bonus Chrome extension to make every teacher more time efficient.
If you're new to the concept of Techie Brekkies, check out this blog post by EdGalaxy.
Classroom can streamline and enhance learning and teaching. But what about using rubrics to assess student work?
If you are one of the majority of us who use Google Classroom to manage our students digitally, then I’m sure you’ve considered the lack of rubrics a drawback. Currently you only have the option of giving a single grade- out of 100 or customisable. There are ‘add-ons’ such as Orange Slice & Goobric but they are third party tools that take a bit of fiddling around. Although not available to all users yet, get on board early and trial the beta version of rubrics and Classroom. To sign up for the trial, just click here and complete the form.
Soon to be released is Lego Spike, the next gen from Lego in the STEM world. It is simple and fast to build, code and pack up.
The team at ICT EDU Magazine (Marty & Tser Lin) headed to Sydney in July to cast our eye over all things new in the world of technology and education. Here's our highlights:
Sphero's latest robot, the soon to be released RVR, looks to be a huge step up in features. ICT EDU MAG have backed this project on Kickstarter & will therefore have exclusive early access to reviews.
WATCH THE VIDEO
VR is all the rage in the edtech world. Class VR are dedicated to the education market and have some interesting offerings.
what's new @EDUTECH2019
Chromebooks are already dominating the market. Acer now have an all-in-one ChromeOS desktop computer (known as a Chromebase). Although it appears to be targeted at video conferencing (corporate world), watch this space for more education offerings.
Bee Bot's cousin the Blue Bot (which is bluetooth controllable and codable on an iPad) now has a new function. New generation Blue Bots now have audio playback- record your directional language and it will playback as the Bot follows the program.
Looking for some new accessories for your existing Bee Bot sets? Have a look at our video showing new Bee Bot cases that allow the Bee Bot to 'scoop' up objects along its path. I'm thinking Coles Minis just found a new use!
Bee Bots available from Edtech Specialists
Marty & Tser Lin living the EduTech dream on the LWT exhibitor stand.
1300 550 717
Most popular games- Grades 5/6
If you'd like to use the data from this survey with your own students, simply open this link to create a copy.
Last issue we shared a student digital habits survey. With nearly 400 responses, check out some of the insights into what our students enjoy doing with their time online.
STUDENT DIGITAL HABITS SURVEY
Most popular games- Grades 3/4
Grades 5/6 | What do you enjoy Watching On YouTube?
What do you enjoy watching on ?
Other people gaming
Grades 3/4 | What do you enjoy Watching On YouTube?
Other people gaming
VICTORIAN SCHOOLS BOOK NOW FOR TERM 1 2020
As we immerse our students in the riches of digital learning, it is imperative that we keep cyber safety/digital citizenship at the forefront. If you teach Grades 3-6, then Be Internet Awesome is a must.
The lessons are structured within the framework of five key positives behaviours: Smart, Alert, Strong, Kind & Brave. Each module has a series of 'unplugged' teacher led activities followed by an online gamified assessment, Interland. Students will love playing Interland after each module to earn their certificate. With its modern graphics and engaging game play, your students are sure to be internet awesome in no time.
suitable for Grades 3-6
easy to follow teacher lesson plans
gamified and engaging for students
Did you know?
54% of Australian parents are not confident in dealing with online risks their children face.
(May 2019, Office of eSafety)
Written by Guest Writer - Phil Carew
(Head of Digital Technologies & eLearning, Toorak College)
Last issue we featured Google Slides and an innovative way to create animations. We now pass the baton to our newest guest writer, Phil Carew, to arm you with even more Google Slides tips and tricks. Cheers to the death of boring Slide presentations!
Google Slides is so much more than a presentation tool. Encourage creativity and show your students how best to use Slides for producing designs, mock-up sketches, taking notes and more.
Here is a list of exciting Google Slides tips and reminders for you to use in the classroom.
Keep formatting conventions - Paste with Command + Shift + V (works in all G Suite tools) to keep the current formatting
Movement - Hold shift when moving images so they only move slightly
Auto Draw - Use AutoDraw to draw images to use in your designs. AutoDraw is a new tool that pairs machine learning with drawings to help everyone create anything visual, fast.
Crop - Use the drop-down arrow next to the crop symbol to crop images into different shapes
Use Google Fonts to find new and exciting fonts that you can add to Slides and Docs
Utilise Chrome tabs - Click and drag images from Google Image search into your Slides tab instead of copying and pasting them
Use the Palette Creator Chrome add on to get different HEX codes from one image so you can adhere to brand or colour conventions.
The following Google image search tips will also help develop your designs even further:
Size - encourage students to follow these steps before they begin their search - Size - Larger than 800 x 600 to ensure the image won’t be pixelated
Colour - click Tools > Colour > Transparent to make sure the image doesn’t have a background
Usage rights - encourage students to follow these steps before they begin their search - Usage rights > Labelled for reuse to make sure the images are copyright free
Here are some worked examples that I’ve used effectively with my students:
Create a collaborative Slide Deck for students to research a new topic or theme. The following guides work well - Include 2 images, 1 video, something you knew prior, 3 points of research etc.
App design iterations
Click File > Page Setup > Custom to make the size similar to a mobile phone screen to design mockup app storyboards (7x12 cm works well for phone storyboard templates).
SUpercharge google slides
While we're on a roll with how versatile Slides can be in the classroom, let us share a super resource thanks to Chris Harte. Chris is a fellow Google Certified Innovator and founder of Unstuck Learning Design.
The following Slides are chock full of 'Thinking Canvases', graphic organisers that can be utilised to make thinking visible and share understandings with other people. While some are classics; Venn Diagrams for example, other Thinking Canvases are perhaps less well known. There is also a whole section devoted to Harvard Project Zero Thinking Routines.
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One of the greatest challenges in today's classroom is student engagement. As a teacher I often ask myself: How do I motivate my students to continue to practise a skill over and over in the hope of developing competence without boring them? The answer is the app, Explain Everything.
What is it?
Explain Everything is an interactive tool that lets students annotate, animate, write, record and share their learning. It can be used across all learning domains. It is easy to use as the layout and buttons are very self explanatory. The added bonus is that all work can easily be exported to digital portfolios e.g. Seesaw. Explain Everything can be used across multiple platforms e.g. Chromebooks, iPads etc.
While I have used the app across all learning domains, the remainder of this article will focus on how I utilise it for Literacy. As a Grade 2 teacher, teaching reading is a major focus of my role. I incorporate the app as a regular part of the literacy block. Below are just a few examples of some ways that it has redefined how I teach literacy in my classroom:
Fluency: An extract of a text is uploaded onto the pages. The students can record and playback what they have read to practise fluency, intonation and expression.
Punctuation/Grammar: Using an extract, students can use the highlighting function to find: adjectives, nouns, capital letters, full stops etc in a text.
Comprehension: Using an extract, students can use the highlight and record function to answer teacher set comprehension questions to prove that their answer is correct with evidence from the text.
The selected text could be from a whole class shared reading, a guided reading text tailored to the students instructional level, student selected text or even a comprehension extract e.g NAPLAN. With a bit of imagination, almost anything can be created to reinforce reading skills. Furthermore, once created, one activity can be adjusted slightly and used multiple times, each with a different focus.
How do I use it?
One way to start is to create an initial template of a text that I would like the students to focus on.
To do this, I simply take photo extracts of the text I desire. I stick to one photo per slide to ensure that the print is large enough for the student to read. Using the add text function, I can type instructions or comprehension questions.
While creating the initial template might seem time consuming at first, it can easily be exported to multiple devices through the airdrop function. For example, an entire year level could use it as an activity. As mentioned earlier, with a few quick adjustments one template could be reused for multiple sessions for a variety of purposes e.g. fluency, grammar, comprehension. Over time, a school could potentially create an entire bank of these resources.
The app is easy enough for students to use. The icons located on the interface are fairly self explanatory e.g. a camera symbol to take a photo. At the beginning of the year, I took a short amount of time to explicitly teach the students some of the basic features e.g. adding a photo/text, annotating, saving, recording, highlighting. Soon after, the students were able to use the app independently. In fact, once familiar with the app, the students can create their own text responses.
One of the best elements about the app is the way in which the students have a real purpose and audience. The students love showcasing their work! Through the recording function, the students can watch and listen to themselves and reflect on how they achieved the success criteria. Additionally, the students can work in pairs or partners to share their work and provide peer feedback. Furthermore, this work can be easily cast onto an Interactive Whiteboard/Panel for whole class display. It can even be exported onto digital portfolios (e.g. Seesaw) to enable families at home to see the work that is happening in the classroom. Another handy aspects of the app is that it also creates endless opportunities for assessment e.g. running records, comprehension.
Explain Everything is a brilliant app to engage young minds. It is not a mere substitution of learning e.g. replacing a paper copy Q&A comprehension with a digital version. It redefines and contextualised literacy skills for the digital age.
Explain Everything is available on iOS, Play Store or a web browser. Try the free version to trial for yourself but the limitations will prevent ongoing use. When you are ready to purchase, explore the best paid version for your school and devices.
Written by Guest Writer - Matt Dalton
CAN YOUR STUDENTS ?
ISSUE 6 / APRIL 2019
Check out their official YouTube channel for free tutorials and webinars.
Written by Guest Student Writer - Mohan
JOIN THE TEAM:
We are proud to have a growing team of talented guest writers and would love you to join us!
We're looking for thought leaders in the EdTech space to be official ICTEDUMAG Guest Writers.
All you need is passion, an idea and a willingness to share. We are particularly keen to see lesson examples, photos, videos and how you have brought an idea to life. It can be anything that utilises technology to enhance learning and teaching.
If you're interested, simply send your article or reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will be in touch.
Take a look at Mohan's 'Top 5 Chrome Extensions' to enhance your Chrome browser.
For more information on all the extensions mentioned, click here.
TOP 5 EXTENSIONS
Sphero continue to secure their place in the education market with the introduction of their new product, Specdrums.
When worn by the user, this ring can be tapped on any coloured surface to create a variety of sounds, beats and loops. The rings are Bluetooth Midi compatible and when paired with an IOS or Android device and synced with the Sphero EDU app, the creative possibilities are endless.
The ring is made from silicone and features a light sensor to detect colours and an accelerometer to determine when the user is tapping an object. The pack comes with a Micro USB charger and rubber playing pad which when rolled up, makes the kit very portable for aspiring young musicians and DJ’s.
Educators can expand their ‘instrument’ base by utilising any coloured objects in the classroom or school environment such as tables, post-it notes, fruit, clothing etc. The free ‘Specdrums’ app uses on-board sound packs in a variety of categories such as Strings, Synths and Drums.
The second ‘Sphero EDU’ app combines software, hardware and community to create a STEAM based space that will inspire creativity and nurture your students’ musical and coding skills.
As a music educator and ICT leader, I believe this product ticks all the boxes. It uses an intuitive and expandable app and the rings themselves are sturdy enough to take some knocks in the classroom. My students have enthusiastically explored the school grounds to ‘play’ murals, chairs and even our rainbow themed playground! The older students have embraced the opportunity to create their own sound banks and record tracks to upload on our student website.
The rings work as Bluetooth MIDI devices so they also have the ability to connect to other music-making apps and software such as GarageBand and Ableton Live.
It’s worth noting that Sphero will be releasing a classroom pack in August/September that will feature individual codes on each of the rings. This will assist with the connecting of multiple devices in the classroom. The pack will also include activity cards to provide more focus driven lessons for teachers.
With Specdrum, Sphero have successfully bridged the gap between science/technology and art/music, and in doing so have inspired my students to use music and code to explore the world around them.
Written by Guest Writer - Elizabeth Moran
Written by Guest Writer - Ben Sandison
Geo Tools are one of those resources that get students excited in the classroom, and thankfully it’s also one of those things that Google does particularly well.
With Google Maps, MyMaps, the phenomenal Google Earth, Street View and VR integration; Google has it covered in the Geo space. Using these tools in the classroom can be a great way of not only engaging your students, but immersing them in content in new and exciting ways. Let’s mash it up!
In issue 6 Will Sederino gave us some great tips on how to use Google MyMaps to create personalised Google Maps with your students. The ability to collaborate on MyMaps and share with peers is a huge asset to a learning tool. This allows us to be creative in the way we use the Maps we make as well. By importing our MyMap creations into Google Earth, we can take people on a journey.
Google Earth has come a long way since version 1 in 2001. Now that it is a web-based app, we can enjoy access to anywhere in the world, from anywhere in the world - including in our classrooms!
Google Earth has for a long time allowed us to search for places and bookmark them for future reference; usually our home address, workplace and perhaps our favourite landmarks and holiday destinations. But within the My Places menu, there is a function that enables you to take the students in your class on a journey through a literacy text, historical event or even a cultural tour. By mashing up your MyMaps pinned locations with Google Earth using an imported KML file, you can truly immerse people in your journey.
From MyMaps to Google Earth
In my example I have simply dropped a series of pins around the Melbourne coastal Bayside area, taking in significant landmarks and points of interest from the Bayside City Council’s Coastal Trails.
The great thing about this process is that it imports not just the locations, but any information that you have added to the description in MyMaps. Of course, the descriptions in MyMaps allow you to add extra elements to your journey such as links to Street View, Google Arts and Culture, photos, as well as any other links to relevant, credible websites.
To take it to the next level, if you have Google Cardboard or another VR headset available, providing links to the 360° photos and giving the students the opportunity to stand in locations and look around can provide yet another point of view to engage and immerse your students.
Check It Out
Google Lit Trips - a resource of literary texts with premade KML files to import into Google Earth. Requires you to register (free of charge) so you can receive a downloadable KML/KMZ file to match the books. Many of the Lit Trips have excellent novel study notes with accompanying links to other resources. Eric Curts gives a great tutorial on using Google Lit Trips in his blog. ‘Control+Alt+Achieve’
MAPPING MASH UP
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