Storyboards are often associated with Hollywood, as part of the process of making a movie.  They are a visual medium between the written script and the actual film that lays out the basic events of the plot, or a more focused and more detailed storyboard might outline the events in an action scene.  In fact, a storyboard is just that- a visual outline.  Hollywood didn’t invent the storyboard, though.  That credit really goes back to the creators of cave drawings many thousands of years ago, maybe in a sense perfected by Egyptians in hieroglyphics. While Hollywood uses storyboards as an intermediate step in a production,Read More →

I love that education has begun embracing the idea that students can show what they have learned in a variety of ways.  I love that students have access to digital tools that facilitate creativity.  It’s great that some of the easiest options to give them are already on our devices, in Microsoft Office.  For many of my students, PowerPoint was always their go-to option when they had a choice.  What I don’t love is how little time they spend on content, and how much time they spend on appearances- themes, fonts, (can we just ban Comic Sans?) and other tools to make it look good.Read More →

In less than 36 hours I will be on a plane to Palm Springs for the Spring CUE Conference, where I will be presenting the session that this post gets its name from.  The title comes from years of sitting through years of PD about topics like student-centered classrooms and active engagement, delivered via lecture and PowerPoint.  Why is it such a difficult concept that the same factors that determine the effectiveness of instruction with students also apply when teachers are in the role of students?  Why is it so rare for purveyors of profound pedagogy to practice it personally?  We will review some literatureRead More →

We’ve all been there.  You have content in one tab that you want to see next to content on a different tab, or you need to move it, piece by piece.  It may be data that needs moved, or grades from an online assessment tool that you need to copy into your grade book app.  Or you may just want to have a Google doc or Word document open to jot down notes about anything on another screen.  What do we do? First, we separate the tabs into different windows, then we click “restore down” on each window. (Yes, “restore down” is what it’s reallyRead More →

Does it still count as Chrome Extension of the Day if you don’t post daily?  Last week we covered EDpuzzle, the website.  Which, was, of course, just a set-up, for today’s Chrome Extension of the Day (CEotD), the EDpuzzle extension.  This one is pretty straightforward.  When you add it to your Chrome browser, it just sort of sits here, all grayed out.  Or greyed out, if you prefer. If you click on it, it doesn’t really do anything. To make it work its magic, you have to go to YouTube. Below any video you go to on YouTube, lurking beneath the bottom right corner ofRead More →

One of my favorite web-based tools for the classroom is EDpuzzle.   When you think about watching a video clip in the classroom, you probably picture something like this:  The teacher starts the video, but occasionally pauses to ask comprehension questions, to make sure students are paying attention, and to draw attention to important points.  Either that, or there is a worksheet full of questions from the video.  The worksheet has the advantage of holding everyone accountable, but loses the laser-pointer effect of the teacher pausing and drawing attention to things as they come up. EDpuzzle moves the video to individual student devices, and embeds questionsRead More →

Today’s Chrome Extension of the Day is a simple but powerful organizational tool, OneTab.  OneTab is for all of us who are extreme multitaskers, and have so many tabs open in our browser that we can’t even see what they are any more.  The icon looks like a funnel, which is appropriate for what it does, which is to move all of your open tabs into a single tab that lists all of your other tabs.  Wow, that was wordy.  Just check out the before and after pics below. (Before)   (After)   Now you can see exactly what each tab is.  Mine happens toRead More →

As promised late last week, here is the first installment of the Chrome Extension of the Day.  First up is Screencastify- “Simple Screen Video Recorder”.  As a reminder, a chrome extension is a mini-program that runs through the Chrome browser, usually from a third-party (not made by Google). Screencasting, if you don’t know, means recording what is on your computer screen.  Various screencasting tools come with various features, including whether or not they can record audio from a microphone, or the computer’s system audio, and whether they can record just a single tab, or the entire desktop.  Screencastify has all of these options.  It evenRead More →