A Good Chart Featuring Some of The Best Resources and Tools for Teaching Kids Typing

February 10, 2016
With the raise of touch screen technologies keyboarding as we have always known it is becoming obsolete. It’s definitely too early to talk about the demise of keyboarding for there is still a long way to go before touch screen typing is entirely internalized within the mainstream digital culture. Until then, touch typing will still predominantly mediate our interaction with the digital world. The purpose of today’s post is to share with you some of the best resources to teach kids quick typing skills. These include web tools, mobile apps, games and applications that can be used across different platforms to help learners develop enhanced typing skills.  Check them out below and as always share with us your feedback. Enjoy


6 Outstanding Augmented Reality Apps for Science Teachers

February 10, 2016
Augmented Reality (AR) technologies are making some huge leaps into the educational landscape transforming the way teaching and learning are taking place. Educators and teachers are increasingly adopting AR technologies in their classrooms. As extensions of the physical world,  AR technologies amplify its dimensions and bring life to its static constituents. There are a variety of ways you can use AR in your class. For instance, you can use them to take your students into virtual field trips, visit world museums, animate and enrich textbook content and many more.


In an earlier post we featured a number of key apps and websites that teachers can use to engage students in educational AR experiences. Today we are sharing with you some interesting AR apps specifically curated for science teachers. These apps can make science learning more fun, engaging and challenging. Enjoy

1- Anatomy  4D
‘Through this free app and a simple printed image, Anatomy 4D transports students, teachers, medical professionals, and anyone who wants to learn about the body into an interactive 4D experience of human anatomy. Visually stunning and completely interactive, Anatomy 4D uses augmented reality and other cutting edge technologies to create the perfect vehicle for 21st century education.’

2- Science AR
‘Science AR is the Augmented Reality App for schools. Makes the Science AR posters come alive. This App works in conjunction with the Science AR posters. Not in isolation.’

3- Zoo-AR
‘Zoo-AR is an Augmented Reality application with a variety of animals and insects available for viewing in 3D. Simply download the correct markers and either print them out or view them on another device.’

4- Elements 4D 
‘Part educational story and part game, the Elements 4D app offers a new, fun way to experience augmented reality and learn about real-life chemistry.’

5- SkyView
‘SkyView® brings stargazing to everyone. Simply point your iPhone, iPad, or iPod at the sky to identify stars, constellations, planets, satellites, and more!’

6- Spacecraft 3D
‘NASA's Spacecraft 3D is an augmented reality (AR) application that lets you learn about and interact with a variety of spacecraft that are used to explore our solar system, study Earth, and observe the universe. Using a printed AR Target and the camera on your mobile device, you can get up close with these robotic explorers, see how they move, and learn about the engineering feats used to expand our knowledge and understanding of space.’

Here Is A Great Tool for Creating Educational Video Games to Use in Class

February 10, 2016
Pixel Press is an excellent application that enables you to draw your own video games. Teachers can create educational video games to use in class without the need for any coding skills. The process is very simple: use pen and paper to draw your game, take a picture of it via your iPad’s camera and Pixel Press does the rest and bring your game to life. You can either create on paper with ‘Draw-on-Paper’ and take a picture of it or use ‘Draw-in-App’ to directly draw on screen. When your game is created, you can then share it with the entire community in the ‘Arcade’.


There is also a section in Pixel Press that provides free downloadable lesson plans for teachers. ‘Parents and teachers are already discovering amazing way to use our software to teach kids STEM focused learning principles - such as prototyping, design thinking, teamwork & collaboration, and user empathy.’ Some of the features provided by Pixel Press:
  • Run & jump Mario-style gameplay
  • Play and create your own games for free - optional in-app purchases to unlock new tools like enemies and new power-ups
  • Create with 14 creator glyphs: terrain, moving blocks, ladders, portals, monkey bars, power-ups, coins, super coins, falling blocks, spikes, exploding blocks, start and end position, pits & fire balls, and keys
  • Featuring two original themes to create from, “Save the Parents” and “Fiddleheads: Stones of Eden”, and more coming!
  • Publish your levels to the Arcade and see level leaderboards, times played, and level likes
Watch the video below to learn more about Pixel Press


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A Handy Chart Featuring Some of The Best Tools and Apps for Creating Interactive Timelines

February, 2016
In today’s series of EdTech charts, we are sharing with you this collection of meticulously curated tools and mobile apps to use with students in class to create educational timelines. The great thing about timelines is that they can be incorporated in the teaching of almost any subject. Students can use them to conceptualize events and visualize processes. They can also help them create connections and categorize events and items along a given continuum. Whether you want to create simple educational timelines chronicling the chronological development of a particular happening or design interactive 3D timelines that embed a rich mixture of multimedia materials, the tools and apps below are absolutely a great place to start with. Check them out and as always your feedback is greatly appreciated.

Categories
Apps
Web-based tools for creating timelines
iPad apps for creating timelines
Android apps for creating timelines

6 Powerful Chromebook Apps for Creating Educational Animations and Annotated Videos

February 9, 2016
In response to a request we received a few days ago, we curated the list below featuring some of the best video creation tools for Chromebook users. Some of the things you can do with these tools include creating animations, annotating videos, adding text and captions to your videos, splitting long clips into smaller ones, trimming video clips, adding soundtracks and hyperlinks to videos and many more. And for those of you interested in creating simple educational video games to use with students in class try out Scratch listed at the end of this post.

1-Clarisketch 


Clarisketch is an interesting app that enables you to create animated sketches by combining speech, drawing and photos. As a teacher, you can use Clarisketch to create flipped classroom videos, explain a complex process or illustrate a given topic using both annotated commentary and recorded audio. You will be able to walk the students through your explanations using features such as highlights, drawings and audio prompts.

 2- PowToon Presentation Edu 


Pontoon Edu allows you to animate difficult topics and engage your students using a wide variety of tools. You can easily drag and drop characters and props into your slides and assign it an animation, choose from different pre-designed templates and style libraries.Videos and animated presentations you create through PowToon Edu can be exported in various ways. You can share them on YouTube or Facebook, download them to your computer. You can also export them as MP4 file to embed in your classroom blog or website.


YouTube Video Editor is definitely one of the best and easy tools you can use to edit and create new videos. It allows you to combine multiple videos and images you've uploaded to create a new video. Other features include trimming clips to custom lengths, select music to add to your videos from YouTube’s library, and customize your clips with special tools and effects. Video Editor also has an awesome interactivity feature that allows you to  add interactive elements to your videos.These interactive features can be annotations, links to other videos or external resources on the web, call-for action buttons and many more.

4- WeVideo- Video Editor and Maker


WeVideo is another powerful Chrome app that you can use on Chromebook to easily edit your videos. It provides 3 editing modes: storyboard, timeline, and advanced mode. It is also integrated with popular websites such as Dropbox and Google Drive so you can easily work on photos, videos and graphic files uploaded there. Other major editing features provided by WeVideo include: add text, music , and transitions to your  videos, record voice-overs, trim video clips , style your videos using different professional themes, and many more.

5- Magistro


‘Magisto Magical Video Editor & Maker is a fun and easy way to automatically edit videos and share them with your friends and family. Just select videos and photos, and Magisto will turn them into beautiful edited movies, complete with music and effects, in minutes.’

6- Scratch 

Scratch is a project designed and provided for free by the MIT Media Lab. It is basically a "a programming language and an online community where children can program and share interactive media such as stories, games, and animation with people from all over the world. ". All of these activities require students to practice a host of essential 21st century learning skills such as creative thinking, systematic and logical reasoning and working collaboratively. Students' final products can be shared in online communities for others to interact with, like and favour, and re-share.

Grammarly- A Great Tool to Help Students with Their Writing

February 9, 2016
Grammarly is an excellent Chrome extension students can use to help them with their writing. It provides a free spell and grammar checker that can be used across different platforms including sites such as Facebook, Twitter, LinedIn, Gmail…etc. It’s true, most of online editors now come with sophisticated spell checking services but only few provide contextual spell and grammar checking. Grammarly ‘spots erroneous use of lose/loose, affect/effect, lie/lay, there/their/they’re, and many more commonly confused words.’


The grammar checker in Grammarly allows you to check for different kinds of grammatical mistakes in your text. From proper use of modifiers to subject- verb agreement, Grammarly checker can verify the correct use of over 250 grammatical rules. Additionally, Grammarly’s word choice suggestions is a great way to enhance and diversify students vocabulary.

Grammarly is available in both free and premium versions. Watch the video below from PencilNeckGeek to learn more about this tool. Enjoy


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