Thursday, 12 December 2013

Learning Journals in the Early Years

It's early days but our concerted efforts to realise the first examples of ePortfolios AKA Learning Journals in the Early Years are starting to take shape.

Why Learning Journals, what's wrong with Portfolio?

We feel that the term 'Portfolio' has a tendency to imply product over process, best work over, well, work. What we really want to see is the 'journey' of learning, yes the final 'product', but arguably more importantly, the process of learning that the student/teacher documented on the way there.

Here's a tantalising glimpse of two our Kindergarten classes K1 and K2, trust me when I tell you that the actual contents are truly transformational, no, revolutionary when compared to the pretty but teacher centred, relatively passive paper counterparts. Unfortunately as these are live journals, I can't share access to the journals themselves.

More to follow later in the year when they are more representative of an entire years learning, but for now, the strategy in a nutshell is:

  • Teachers who are not 'techie' but are great teachers, and ready to learn
  • Build a 'capture culture' in every classroom, not just the teacher, the kids.
  • Lot's of devices in the hands of the kids—2:1 iPads, and 6 iPod touches in every classroom
  • Every teacher with a MacBook, and an iPad
  • Tools: iOS Devices, iPhoto, iCloud and Picasa
  • An amazing school that stops at nothing to provide teachers with whatever they could possibly need to innovate, create and excel at cultivating & motivating learning.


Work flow:

  • We set up iCloud accounts for each classroom, and connect every iOS device in that room to that account.
  • We activated PhotoStream in a separate account on the classroom teacher's Mac (to avoid PhotoStream conflict)
  • Now any content saved to the camera roll on any device (screen capture makes this very easy) connected to that classroom account wirelessly loads directly into the teacher's PhotoStream—a stream of class capture culture consciousness... 
  • In iPhoto, Teachers 'curate' content from the stream, dragging 'critical incidents' into an album that they have created for each child.
  • Captions are added using the 'Info' button in iPhoto
  • Video is not supported by PhotoStream so that has to be downloaded manually into iPhoto
  • When teachers are ready, each album is Exported to Picasa directly from iPhoto, with video that's about 10 minutes per album, with a decent connection
  • Once they are all uploaded, each album is then shared by the teacher with parents via email directly from Picasa (or Google+ Photos) this takes about an hour.

iPhoto Photo Stream - Reflecting Classroom Capture Culture

#rEvolutionary


Reality Check:

This model could be replicated using as little as ONE iOS device, ie a teacher iPhone,  and one Apple Mac computer (all come with iPhoto as standard) it just means that the teacher would have to do the capturing, instead of the kids. Even one shared class iOS device would make capturing learning by students possible as well, obviously the more devices you can out in the hands of the kids, the easier it is to capture their learning, but the more content you will need to curate!




Monday, 9 December 2013

Kill your Calendar (over the Holidays)



I don't know about you, but I don't particularly appreciate it when my iPhone AND iPad AND MacBook bleep in cacophonous union to remind that I have a meeting at 8:00am, when it's 3:30am in the UK, especially not when I'm suffering from jetlag, and that is now the end of THAT night's sleep, thank you very much.

Well, getting your school calendar to take a holiday when you do is not difficult, when you know how, but isn't that often the case?

Here's how:

As your calendars are in 'the cloud' you can safely delete them from any device, and just restore them when you get back. So go to ...


Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars


Now select the account that has the calendar you wish to kill, and you will see this:



Slide the switch to kill the Calendar


This is the part where people panic, it's OK, just delete it. Trust me. 



All it does is turn the calendar off, not quite so scary sounding is it? 


Now all you have to do is reverse this when you get back.

Thursday, 21 November 2013

Report Writer

http://www.reportcommentbank.co.uk/


A small group of teachers and put this system together a few years ago to make report writing less hassle for themselves and their colleagues.

You can access it straight from a Chrome App (free on the Chrome App store) as well



The free version allows you to:
  • Create reports 
  • Create your own comments
  • Edit comments
  • Access shared comments
Of course there are lots of other great features available of don't mind paying £10 a year ($20 SGD) for them.

They have really impressive range of comments.



Tips

Some common errors - even with British spelling, spell program when referring to a computer program  (not programme) we all use the American spelling, because they invented it!

ICT (Information Communication Technology), ICTs or 'digital technologies' is preferred over IT, IT is the engineering, the workings of the machine, the engineering, and coding, whereas we are really only concerned with the use of the machine, for communicating understanding , the C , in ICT.

Avoid using the term 'technology' to refer to ICT, although it is commonly used as a shortening of the full 'Information Communication Technology' it makes the mistake of assuming that all technology is digital, which it is not, ask any engineer, or maybe even Google:

technology


  • the application of scientific knowledge for practical purposes, especially in industry.
  • machinery and devices developed from scientific knowledge.
  • the branch of knowledge dealing with engineering or applied sciences.

Monday, 7 October 2013

Batch Rename FIles


Or, in plain English, rename loads of files at once.

So you have a load of files, maybe images or video, with obscure, automated titles like IMG123456 and so on, but you want them to have titles that are at least reasonably related to the English language.

Well there is a tool for this on your Mac, here's how you do it.


You only have to set this up once, then you can use it forever...
  1. Open the App called Automator and create a new workflow file (press Command-N or choose New from the File menu). Then choose Service from the window of available workflow types (this option will look like a gear).
  2. Adjust Service inputs - so be sure to choose "files or folders" from the first drop-down menu at the top of the workflow, and then choose Finder from the second menu. 
  3. Drag the Rename Finder Items option from the action library (to the left of the window, under the Files & Folders category) to the workflow window. When you do this, Automator will issue a warning that this action will alter existing files, and provide you with an option to add an action to first copy the files instead of altering them. At this point click Don't Add.
  4. Under options click 'Show his action when the workflow runs" so you have the choice to decide what and how you wish to rename the files (See example below).
  5. Save - name it something like 'Rename Files'
  6. Now when you go to the Finder, you can select a group of files or folders, and then right-click them and select your workflow from the Services submenu of the contextual menu.
https://kkaefer.com/journal/2011/batch-rename-on-lion/


Wednesday, 2 October 2013

A Framework for Transformational Technology - SAMMS




Five Transformational Triggers for the Integration of Digital Technology


Transformative applications of digital technology are the holy grail of educators spanning the globe, and yet it is far from easy to achieve...




Moving from the Mundane to the Magnificent

Frameworks like SAMR and RAT are incredibly helpful here, but we still need a framework to assist with the top levels of redefinition/transformation of learning through effective uses of digital technologies. SAMMS is a framework that attempts to assist with this, by determining exactly what the 'magic ingredients' are that move tech use from the mundane to the magnificent.

Determining these 'ingredients' starts from a position of describing what it is about digital technologies that make them unique, transformative—what is it they facilitate that cannot be replicated with traditional tools? Exactly how do pixels out perform paper? I've been reading a LOT about ICT integration over the last four years in my pursuit of a Master's degree, and throughout my readings I noticed a pattern forming—certain aspects of ICTs that were deemed to make a significant difference in teaching and learning, or to use the academic vernacular, 'unique affordances' ...

So what are the transformative, unique affordances of digital technologies?


Five features or facets of pixels that out perform paper -  (SAMMS):

Situated practice (work anywhere, any place, space, or time)
Accessibility
(access to information)
Multi-modality
(screen centred creations)
Mutability
(provisionality/fluidity/malleability)
Social networking
(syncronous/asyncronous people power) 


I've expanded on these categories in another post, here I want to consider what happens when you cross reference these with what I believe are the 5 core digital domains of ICT:

Text | Image | Audio | Video | Data






By all means consume, but the exciting stuff happens when creating‚ of course you can't have one without the other, you can't connect the dots, unless you have dots to connect... But if you work in any of these domains and also exploit as many of the aspects of ICT that are unique as you can, you create transformative experiences—the more you of these you exploit, the more transformational it becomes. And when you start merging these elements it gets really exciting, eg situated use, means you can access multimodal content anywhere, sharing with others, collaborate, and even revise your content as you go, on your own or with others.


Take the domain of text, most likely this means word processing, (although many typographers and graphic designers might argue with you about that one) but what does working with text look like when it is...

Situated Text


Exploiting the ability for ICTs to make the boundaries between school and home permeable, means that your students don't need 'homework' they just continue with their classwork—well that's what we do in the 'real world' right? I take my work home but it's not 'homework', it's work, some of which I am doing at home, and will continue at work tomorrow. If you're using mobile devices this kind of 'situated practice' becomes even more transformative, with kids adding/editing/tweaking on the bus/train as inspiration occurs, or as research based revelations are revealed.

Accessible Text


Reading and researching the world of the written word has always been more than a little overwhelming (if you've forgotten how overwhelming mountains of data can look, you need to visit a larger library). Thank to the advent of super-fast search, all of that data has become more accessible, accessible in a way that is transformative. Teach your kids some basic search skills and they can leverage the unprecedented level of global access that is unique in history that we already take for granted.

MultiModal Text

Now at first glance this might seem a little contradictory, like, if it's multimodal (image, video, audio), it's not just text, but leveraging other modes of media in conjunction with text is again transforming the ways we consume and create with text. As an example, I now regularly 'consume' media I have not got time to read on paper/screen by listening to podcasts as I commute. Students can use text to speech features to hear how their writing sounds, or to motivate reluctant readers, who may well be more inclined to listen than decode. Taking snapshots of passages in books, posters, flyers, and of course screen shots of inspirational material—quotes, slogans, titles. Technically using text and image together is multimodal, but I would argue only if the images are illustrations, not just decorations. 

What this is really about is a new kind of literacy as the multimedia devices that now are ubiquitous in our worlds mean that speech and writing are already being pushed to the margins of and replaced by image and others. The once dominant page, especially in terms of the newspaper and the book, is giving way to the screen (Kress, 2005). Let's encourage our kids to illustrate, accentuate, emphasise and embellish their text with image, with sound, with moving images and even video.

Mutable Text

This is a no brainer—even the most tech phobic will have to concede that the mutability of screen text is revolutionary compared to paper. Although, it is depressing how little this incredible capability is embraced by teachers—editing and revision can be transformational, creative experiences thanks to the provisionality of pixels.

Many teachers may yearn nostalgically for the 'good old days' of handwriting & cursive; and while that skill has it's place, it's hard to argue its benefits if the goal is improved writing in terms of making meaning. Revising text that is restricted to (often barely legible) handwritten annotations squeezed into margins or between lines is clearly inferior when entire paragraphs need moving, adjusting, inserting; with edits of this kind the student in question would need to literally rewrite the entire piece. Hardly motivating or conducive to reflective practice.

Cutting/pasting looking up meanings and synonyms, proofreading, all amplify what we can do with text, but transforming means exploiting things like undo button to encourage kids to take more risks; the save as, revert or history options to manage multiple versions of documents; the effective use of styles so that formatting changes can be made to an entire document with one click; smarter uses of (well designed) templates; grab snippets of text from multiple sources and from multiple perspectives, and mash, mix, mend, and remix them into something unique.

Social Text

We are social and of course nothing beats the power of social connection in the classroom face to face and the powerful synergy that creates. But with the advent of web 2.0 this conversation can continue beyond the classroom and more importantly beyond the strictures of the 45 minute period lesson where you will inevitably struggle to converse with every student on a meaningful level. Now, instead of "setting homework" students can continue with their classwork at home, only now they can collaborate online with you/with their peers who can comment/reply/respond facilitating a virtual conversation through the medium of digital text.

Since students can express their thoughts without interruption, they have more time to reflect and respond (Shea, 2003). This ‘peer-based learning’ is characterised by “a context of reciprocity”, (Ito et al, 2008, p 39) where participants don't just contribute, but also comment on, and contribute to the content of others. This transformational practice is already becoming seamlessly integrated into the fabric of the classroom so that dialogue and pupil collaboration can be enhanced and extended, (Garrison, 2004) a cooperative combination of multiple interactions, which is indicative of a new, collaborative pedagogical practice.


Triggers + Domains = Transformation

So, there you have it, transformational practice and here I have only described how this could apply in just one of the five domains. A similar level of transformation can be experienced by the judicious application of effective technology in transformational ways within each of the five domains, across domains and combining several if not all of the triggers.

How do the five transformational tech triggers transform the use of image? audio? video? data? How does this change when we work within and across these domains in ways that are social, accessible, multi-modal, exploiting mutability and situated (can be done almost anywhere)?

How transformational can our use of ICTs be when we work across domains? Merging text, with image; image with audio; video with data; all of them with all of the others?

Aiming for transformative applications of technology can be daunting, if so, it's a good idea to start with amplified practice and add the 5 elements and 5 domains gradually, like ingredients to a cake mixture, the more you add, the more amplified it gets until it becomes transformative. In my experience you will often find that your students will move from amplified into transformative practice quite naturally.


Let your students show how transformative technology can be. I think you'll find that—regardless of your own expertise—the synergy of a teacher's pedagogical expertise, content knowledge, and experience, combined with the natural confidence of 'digital natives' is intrinsically transformative. 


5 Tech Triggers + 5 Tech Domains = 
Transformed edTech

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

UWCSEA Profile (online)


While students and teachers alike are anxious to integrate new learning tools into the classroom, it is our responsibility to empower our students by giving them the fundamental lessons in digital citizenship.

Like any pursuit, from sport to travel and all of the other elements that make for a live worth living, students must enter the world of social media and digital media with some awareness of what could await them, and how best to deal with the (rare but inevitable) negatives. They must understand the repercussions of irresponsibly using social and digital media and what affects it may have on their future.

Digital Citizenship: more than teaching "safety"


So, it is imperative that we teach students 'digital citizenship' - when? As soon as they begin using digital technologies. These require competencies to master, their digital literacy shouldn't simply consist of how to use a computer for research and for communication, but how to use a computer to be a fully functioning, competent, and, well, 'good' member of society - our society.


While we often talk about teaching students how to be "safe" online, teaching digital citizenship should go beyond simply talking about privacy and security. It also means more than just an etiquette lesson on how to behave "appropriately" online.

Our responsibilities to our community, on & offline


Often the word "citizenship" is invoked in terms of rights - our rights to privacy and to free speech, for example. But citizenship is also about responsibilities - responsibilities to maintain, to protect, and to enhance the community in which we live.


With the advent of Internet technologies, that community can be global. But the communities in which students participate are still very much governed by their physical locations. And as such, it is no surprise that most who report online harassment know their perpetrator. That means too that as we focus on teaching digital citizenship and providing online resources, that we cannot ignore what is happening offline as well.

The key is NOT to stigmatise the online world but to accept that the boundaries between the world of pixels and the real world is still populated by people, and the 'rules' for want of a better word, are the same - avoid creating another list of expectations, use the ones you already have, just apply them consistently online as well off.

For us that is best represented by the UWCSEA Profile, this Prezi is a resource I use in assemblies to emphasise this point. There aren't 'online' and 'offline' behaviours, there are just behaviours - and ours in any context speaks volumes...

Monday, 16 September 2013

Printing and Constipation


If you are having problems printing out files, the chances are the culprits are all those MASSIVE images you are squeezing into those documents.

Just dragging the corners and squeezing an image into a smaller hole does nothing to change the actual image size, it just squeezes it into a smaller hole.

Then when you send it to the printer it overloads its precious memory and you get printer constipation.


The solution is simple, before you print, reduce the file size, this is easier than you might think.


In Word, just choose 'Reduce File Size...' 




Or in Pages:
























You will find similar options in applications like PowerPoint and Keynote as well.


Wednesday, 11 September 2013

HELP! Tech support?


Tech support issues are by often by their very nature really frustrating. You might prefer one of those within easy reach of your desk, but the realities are that this is just not feasible. Hopefully you understand that that the school isn’t in a position to have a technical person on standby in every corner of the school, “just in case”. What would they do the rest of the time, when there is no emergency? 

For non 'emergency' the IT support system is working (email: itsupport@gapps.uwcsea.edu.sg) But what happens if it is an IT 'emergency'?



First, let's define that word in this situation. Google defines it as:

e·mer·gen·cy/iˈmərjənsē/

Noun:
  1. A serious, unexpected, and often dangerous situation requiring immediate action.
  2. Arising from or needed or used in an emergency.
For our purposes this really means:

IT e·mer·gen·cy/iˈmərjənsē/

Noun:
  1. A serious, unexpected, and often desperate situation requiring immediate action.
  2. An IT problem that effectively halts a teaching/learning situation.
The IT support team already have a system for escalating response time for IT emergencies, if you make the URGENCY of situation clear in your email, they will aim for a response time of about 15 minutes





As always, planning and prevention is the best cure, so with that in mind, please consider:
  • Always take some time to ensure that the technologies your are relying on are functioning before you need them.
  • If presenting to an audience make time to set up and troubleshoot any problems before the audience arrives. Bear in mind a class is also an audience.
  • If presenting to a large audience, eg an assembly, you can request IT support to attend before the start of the session to assist with any potential IT issues. Please provide plenty of notice though.
  • Always, always have a plan B, ideally an ICT Free Plan C as well.
  • Not ALL emergencies are IT emergencies. If you are unsure check with the IT support guide, here
  • Avoid reliance on one screen (like the IWB); lessons structured around multiple screens are better for learning anyway, and far less susceptible to computer catastrophe.

Last, but not least, always bear in mind ...

(of Computing)

  1. When computing, whatever happens, behave as though you meant it to happen.
  2. When you get to the point where you really understand your computer, it's probably obsolete.
  3. The first place to look for information is in the help section where you least expect to find it.
  4. When the going gets tough, upgrade.
  5. For every action, there is an equal and opposite malfunction.
  6. To err is human ... to blame your computer for your mistakes is even more human.
  7. He who laughs last probably backed-up.
  8. If at first you do not succeed, blame your computer.
  9. A complex system that does not work is invariably found to have evolved from a simpler system that worked just fine.
  10. The number one cause of computer problems is computer solutions.
  11. To screw up is human, to really screw up properly requires a computer. 
  12. A computer program will do what you tell it to, not always what you want it to do.










Monday, 9 September 2013

Chocolate, Broccoli & Minecraft ECAs


No doubt some parents are wondering, "Why is the School offering a Minecraft activity as an ECA?  Why is the Minecraft App on the iPads? There are many reasons why, but a short answer would be; for the same reasons we offer a Chess ECA. Of course the main motivation for this is the cold hard fact that I am a gamer, I love gaming - contrary to popular opinion I do not believe it is 'addictive' - although it is extremely adept at creating a 'flow' state that can easily be interpreted as addiction... So, as this article states so well, 'Stop Worrying, and Learn to Love the Cubes"!

I definitely believe that gaming has a great deal to offer. But this is not the post for this subject, this one is:

http://doverdlc.blogspot.sg/2012/03/video-games-violence.html

So where was I? Oh yes, that said, if I'm honest, Minecraft is not my kind of game, but it is a rare kind of game that both my son (Grade 5) and daughter (Grade 3) LOVE. It is a game they can play together, but very differently, and therein lie the benefits... I'm very wary of attempts to try and make any game 'educational' - this kind of gaming invariably has the attraction of what is known in the industry as 'chocolate covered broccoli'. 




Despite this, as a teacher, I could not resist the desire to attempt this anyway. For example I persuaded students to build a virtual maths museum, with exhibits that showcased ratio, basic 3d shapes, right angled triangles etc. but... But no matter how much metaphorical chocolate I covered it with, it was still broccoli - and I thought, do we do this with Lego? Channel their creations? "Hey kids why don't you build a Maths museum out of Lego?" No. We let them play, and let them take it where they want, just let them play, be creative, cooperate, collaborate, and that's good enough for me... 

All that said there are some great examples online of teachers who have been able to kids to create some delicious chocolate broccoli with it, even without realising it.  A colleague of mine in the UK let some of his students model homeostasis in Minecraft,  But the essential element here is that it was their idea, the teacher didn't even know what Minecraft was. He does now.

And that's what I love about it, it was student centred; their ideas, their motivation, he was the catalyst... That's what I'm looking for. That in a nutshell is my rationale for Minecraft, when people inevitably ask 'Why?' - almost all the reasons you could give me for the value of playing with Lego, can be said of Minecraft.


Or to quote a sentiment commonly being expressed about '21st Century Learnng', we are preparing students for a future in which the 'three Rs' are embedded within the 'three Cs', communication, collaboration, and creative problem solving *(Thornburg, 1998). Minecraft is one example of students doing precisely that.

Think Lego, but with unlimited bricks, space, and best of all, no need to demolish it all at the end of each session. 

Some examples from our students:


The Minecraft game is available on almost all game platforms, even iOS. In fact playing Minecraft on an iPad (or even iPod touch or iPhone) is the easiest (and cheapest) way to play it, and multiplayer could not be simpler, up to 4 players, in the same room, on the same wireless network, that's it.




Friday, 6 September 2013

Hapara

Hapara is a cool tool for teachers to use to see 'inside' their students' Google Drives, Gmail and Learning Journals. Sounds great but how does it all fit together?

Here's the video from Hapara themselves to explain what it does.




But how does it work for us at UWC? Watch this presentation to see how the different elements fit together. 



 There are a few components: 

1) Gmail - this is how many Junior school teachers will communicate with their students (sharing homework, resources, etc). Using Hapara teachers will be able to see all emails in their students' inboxes

2) Google Drive - This is the main place for students to save their work. Saving work here allows students to access their files from anywhere (as long as they have the same programme on their computer e.g. Pages or Numbers). If the file was created within the Google suite (Google document, Google spreadsheet, Google presentation, etc) then no external software is needed. Saving a file here is the same as saving to anywhere else on your computer (click Save then choose the Google Drive folder). By creating folders for each individual unit of work files will be kept organised and easy to locate.

3) Learning Journals - this year we are moving to a digital portfolio of student work. This can be a mixture of final pieces, the process and steps along the way to achieving the final piece, photographs, videos and self reflections to name just a few. You will find many ways of capturing student work in your classes. Remember that you have many tools at your disposal (iPod touches, iPads, iSight cameras in the MacBooks). Folders have already been created for the students in their Google Drive so please encourage your students to create individual unit folders inside the relevant one. 

How this all fits together is like this. Work gets saved in folders in Google Drive. The folder then gets inserted into the students' Learning Journal. Three times per year the Learning Journal will be opened up to parents so they can view the work. As more work is added to the folders it becomes visible on their Learning Journal automatically

Cheryl has created this video to show you how to create folders and insert them into her Learning Journal. 

The main takeaway from this post is to capture the work being created in your classes and save it in the correct folder. We'll help you with the next step when you are ready.

Any questions? Feel free to speak with Ali or Sean. 

Thursday, 5 September 2013

iPhoto Prints with Captions

I get a loads of requests from teachers along the lines of...

"What is the easiest way to turn a bunch of photos into posters with a simple title/tagline?"


 Here's how I do it in iPhoto:





  1. Select the Photos
  2. Give them a caption (if you haven't already)
  3. File > Print
  4. Choose the Contact Sheet Option
  5. Customize
  6. Change to one photo per page
  7. The caption is wrong, and it is too small
  8. Choose Settings (not Print Settings)
  9. Untick Title, choose comments (this displays the captions you wrote earlier)
  10. Change the Size of the text, and font if you like...


Slightly fancier is instead to select the images, and choose the create option where you can use a bunch of Apple templates, but instead of paying Apple to print the book at the end just print it as a PDF, then print it yourself. This is probably better for a year end year book than posters, but I'm sure you can make it work for either if you really want to...



If you really insist on something prettier, resize them in Preview, then drag and drop them all into Keynote, they will all be placed on separate slides,  choose a theme you like, and then add the text yourself.

Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Google Groups and GAL



GAL is a powerful feature within GAPPs, that makes the tedious typing of email addresses a thing of the past. All you have to do is start typing a name, and GAL will attempt to 'autocomplete' the address for you. The more you type, the more accurate the guess gets, until ou can just choose the one you want.


GAL is not automatic, our dear colleagues in IT support manually upload these lists into Google for them to become accessible. For this reason you may not always find that they are ready when you want them, especially at the start of the year. 

When class lists are active in GAL (Global Address Lists) you will know, because if you start typing something like 'anf' in the address field in Gmail, the class list will come up, you may need to wait a few seconds for it to appear, patience, patience, patience!.

It will look something like 'g5classanfdover@gapps.uwcsea.edu.sg'

Only teachers can use these lists, not students.

Groups


If you're wondering who is in a list, or even if a list is active, go to Groups on the black Google bar, search, and click Members on the far right to view the list of members if you're in the group. 








If you're not a member of the group, just click where it says 'You may view the list...'




If you find an anomaly, you can't change these lists, but IT support can.






If you need to make student group for a teaching group, like your Maths class, then:

  1. Log into the CIMS system from the UWCSEA Staff Portal 
  2. Navigate to 'My Staff Profile' then select Teaching Sets, click a class 
  3. Click on the email student button at top right 
  4. Copy the students email addresses - click Command + A, then Command + C to copy all 
  5. Open a new tab with GMail and select Contacts from top black menu bar 
  6. Scroll down to create a New Group from the sidebar 
  7. Name the group with something that is precise 
  8. Click at the top + symbol and paste in the students email addresses...  

To learn how to make a group, check out this link here.

Thursday, 22 August 2013

Media and the College Media Drive

Media, media everywhere, but where exactly?

The old Media Drive (used to be in the doverstudentfs drive) has been rendered obsolete by a nice new shiny, and most importantly HUGE Media Drive.

Google Drive should still be your first stop for everything, but especially for longer/larger videos, and collections of photos, the Media Drive (while on campus) is a lot faster to access than Google Drive.

This drive is available to all students as well, so ideal if you need to make video resources available for them.

You get to it the same way you do any of the shared drives [Finder > Go > Connect to Server], only the address is smb://collegemedia.unitedworldcollege.net/Media 

AVA will be using this drive to leave media for you this year (such as pupil photos, arts festival videos etc) rather than the old shared drives. You will also no doubt find other material or relevance as the year goes on.

This is not permanent storage, as it will be wiped at the end of each academic year, so for video you want to keep permanently, make sure you back it up to an external drive over the holidays, you can always put it straight back on when you get back.

For more on video and what to use for what and and why, and when, go to this link:

http://doverdlc.blogspot.sg/2013/06/to-youtube-or-not-to-youtube-that-is.html

For more on managing images and conserving drive space by being smarter in how you size images, click here:


You can always find the address to this server, and other college Media resources from the Portal.




UWCSEA Media Centre AKA Asset-bank


You will also find a link here to a great collection of UWCSEA images—a college archive that has been carefully curated by the Communications team over the years, all are searchable and can be filtered by campus/college/school etc. 



Comms also have a small collection of images that are particularly handy for Presentations  which I've placed on a Google Drive here, for ease of access. These can also be found on the asset bank.


Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Take a minute (or few) to pick up an ICT skill or 3


"We know what we know, we know that there are things we do not know, and we know that there are things we don't know we don't know" 
Donald Rumsfeld (4 Sept 2002) (Woodward, 2004: 171) The initial insight is reportedly Arabic.





You don't know what you don't know - obvious but especially important in ICT, where knowing a certain skill can be the difference between wrestling with a computer for hours, or doing it in minutes with the right tool in the right way.


"He that knows not,
    and knows not that he knows not
        is a fool.
            Shun him
He that knows not,
    and knows  that he knows not
        is a pupil.
            Teach him.
He that knows,
    and knows not that he knows
        is asleep
            Wake him.
He that knows,
    and knows that he knows
        is a teacher.
            Follow him."
(Arabic proverb)

NEIGHBOUR R (1992) The Inner Apprentice London; Kluwer Academic Publishers. p.xvii


But, the common cry is 'I DON'T HAVE TIME' sure - but and it's a big but - you do make time for things that matter, right? 



Well, ICT skills matter, and using this awesome resources, you don't need much time either:

http://minute.maine121.org/episode-list-2/













Read more on 'Knowing and not knowing' http://www.doceo.co.uk/tools/knowing.htm#ixzz27LWRmy5V 
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