Day One I’ve been meditating on the idea of doing 365 ideas for Office 365, and I’m ready to dive in.  I realize that my “Chrome Extension of the Week” idea lasted for like, four or five weeks, and that was once a week, and this  idea is every day for a year, but I think I’m ready for the challenge. (Update- I just finished Day 101, and I’m about 13 months in. So, it’s not daily, but it is 2-3 posts/week and there’s no shortage of ideas in sight!) So, join me on this adventure! Terminology To start, let’s clarify some terminology.  Strictly speaking,Read More →

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 →

Microsoft is admittedly playing catch-up to Google in K-12 education, but they are creating some dramatic offerings for leveling the playing field, particularly for students with reading difficulties and ELLs.  Microsoft Learning Tools, originally a part of MS One Note, and now largely available within MS Word (Office 365) as the “Immersive Reader” view, has some terrific features for readers.  As you can see in the video, you have choices for text and background colors, and can adjust not only font but also spacing between words.  The text-to-speech engine works well, and offers decent voices, and adjustable reading rates, all while highlighting each word asRead More →