Video Tutorial using screencast-o-matic

Here is the video tutorial I made using screencast-o-matic

In it i described how I used to host my petcha kutcha presentation – which I later embedded on my twitter page.



The Sharks OK song….

drum roll if you please  ddddddddddddddddddrdmrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrmmmmmmm….!!!!!

One of the success criteria I put in place for myself on this course was…. could I do confidently guide the type of projects that I have seen in other classes into existance.?

Introducing the OK song, based on the OK book

In this book Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Tom Lichtenheld celebrate the real skills and talents children possess, encouraging and empowering them to discover their own individual strengths and personalities.

The kids got a kick out of the book so we decided to look into what we too were ‘ok’ at and captured these in paintings. Once we had these I got an idea for a song based on their work. I used audacity to put down two simple overlapping guitar tracks (I used my own guitar but next time I think I’ll use garage band – it could be used by those without a note in their heads) and then put the kids vocal over it. They basically just sang the song in real time along with a slide show of their paintings that I had set up on the interactive white board. Later in the day I sent most of the kids to the sand box for 10 minutes while I recorded some of the stronger singers and placed their track beside the original vocal in order to give it more dept.

Here is the end product… it still sounds a little rough as there is a high pitch sound that I need to root out but its a start.


This little project has helped me to realies that so many of the things we feel are technologically beyond us are in fact totally achievable if we just play around with the, have a go and, if we totally mess up, just try agian. Its exactly what we ask the children in our classes to do.

Back down to business


So, we are now at the business end of the course and I think it as good a time as any to take stock of what I wanted to achieve…

Time passes incredibly fast in this school and as such some things are put on the long finger. What I would like to do now is to see how far I have come from my starting point as well as assessing what I have yet to do in order to be satisfied that I have reached my course goals.

I’m just going to review my targets to see how I’m getting on:

1)       I would like to greatly expand on my knowledge of what is out there from an educational point of view and how my future proficiency in the use of these tools will improve my teaching.

 In this regard I am happy with my progress. In Steve’s class as well as while messing around I have found many apps that are fun, easy to use (and teach) as well as being of significant benefit.. strip design, mad pad, film director and type drawing to name a few. I have started to use the document scanner and IWB much more effectively and the kids are showing some startling independence in use of said equipment also.

I would still like to work on the audio-visual side of the classroom experience. With the kids we had the idea to turn some of their artwork into a song, record it and put it on youtube or vimeo. Were I able to successfully record, produce and publish this I would see it as a successful outcome.


2)      Secondly,  I would like to learn more about how I can help children themselves to use a wide range of hardware and software in the classroom. As in any classroom setting it is much easier to know something or learn something than it is to teach it. Knowing what tools children might be able to use independently will be beneficial to student learning.

This is still the elephant in the room so to speak… the kids are coming from a low base and are at the very least loosing their ‘fear’ of the various pieces of technology at our disposal. However, significant as this may be, it is still some way from independent use for a variety of purposes. I have no intention of ‘pushing’ them in any particular direction, in fact I would like them to be completely oblivious to my efforts. It is just this desire to allow them to broad technological learning experiences (that just so happen to be great fun) that I must focus on to a greater extent moving forward…. I’ll try to add some photos tomorrow to give you an idea of how we support the above initiatives in class…

wiki stuff….

So basically I am going to try to create a wiki site with a  few colleagues… At the moment I haven’t a bull’s notion what a wiki is except that it’s a way of pooling knowledge on a specific area of interest.

So I did a google search to learn more and this is what I came up with… admittedly he somewhat confused….

Provisionally Anissa, Kris, Jenkie and I will try to create something of a learning community – with the intended goal of trying to amass a collection of high-quality, user-friendly and fun-loaded apps for ipad use the likes of which have never been seen this side of the Himalayas. But for now my heads fried so I’m going home…..


Petcha Kutcha Morning…

So, the day finally arrived…

To a man and a woman the whole group were nervous and as a consequence giddy over coffee. However, each in turn nailed their PKs with some aplomb.

Timing being key it was clear to see that the prep hours (or at least quite a few minutes) had been put in. Topics were generally of an educational slant and none bored….

I have used slide share to host my powerpoint embedding it in the the same way as a youtube file.

Chris Lehman presenting at IgnitePhilly

I really liked Chris Lehman’s presentation on “creating the schools we need”. What I found stood out for me was the idea that school is real life, not preparation for real life.

Secondly, I can relate to the view of technology being akin to oxygen – ubiquitous, necessary and invisible. Currently this is not the case in my classroom even though I have the tools at my disposal to make this a reality. Broadly speaking one of my course goals is to create a classroom environment in which this oxygen effect exists. I’ll let you know how I get on.

For those of you that may just stumble upon this site here is the video clip I’m referring to above…


I’d a great day podcasting with the lads. Doddy and Jason could be head-hunted by ESPN at any moment. Mark and I supplied technical and moral support.

Podcasting is great craic and garageband is fantastic tool. I will definitely be using it with my class in the near future.

If you want to listen to the podcast just click here