Want to create a quick Podcast? Just Croak It!

bd5615d64314444d77ac9664f56d48bdPush. Speak. Share. It’s that simple. Croak it is an application that allows you to put voice stamps of your own voice in 30 second and share it with anyone on the whole of internet. Every “croak” generates a link that can be heard from any mobile device from anywhere on the internet.

Here in Manor, students at several campuses are using croak.it to create audio previews of library books and attach QR codes to them.  Attaching QR codes of book previews/reviews to library books is not something new but croak.it has simplified the process greatly.  Students can now record their “croak” and create a QR code for it on the same device in a matter of minutes.  In the past, multiple devices or applications had to be used to complete this process.  One other great benefit to Croak it is that this application does not require a log in.  Follow these simple steps to create your own Audio QR code: QR Podcasts with Croak.it.

Using Twitter to Expand your Learning Community

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As teachers, we get several holidays during our school year.  Because of this, many other professions tease us about not working as hard as they do.  What many of those critics don’t know is that planning and learning in our profession never takes a holiday.  Educators are always planning or at least thinking about creative ways to get through to their students.  Planning great interactive lessons, a wonderful PBL project, or even just trying a new resource. Learning never takes a break in our profession.  During this “Holiday”, when you find yourself relaxing on the sofa with your iPad or other tablet, download Twitter. Create an account and expand your Digital Professional Learning Community. Twitter has quickly become one of the most valuable resources educators have in planning lessons.  These are not just technology integrated lessons but any type of lessons from teachers all over the country and even the world. Follow teachers from all levels of education, K-12 and beyond.  These are educators ready to share ideas and best practices with anyone willing to listen.

Caution: Beware of App Overload!

Taking on the challenge of making the iPad integration in Manor ISD successful is the job of the iTeach Team.  We are excited about the possibilities.  Our different perspectives and experiences will translate well when we begin assisting teachers with the integration of iPads into everyday instruction at Manor ISD.

As you all read in our introductions in the last post, I am a firm believer in limited amount of Apps on the iPad.  When considering iPads for everyday use in the classroom, many people often make the mistake of downloading far too many free or paid applications.  I know this, because I was that person.  At my previous campus, when we received iPods and  iPads, I kept up with the free app of the day posted by TCEA on Twitter (@tcea) and I downloaded to my hearts content.  I expected all these apps to be revolutionary when it came to teaching our students.  Unfortunately, many of the apps I downloaded quickly lost the interest of our students, took up space on the iPad and became a distraction.  Having too many apps can also lead to the iPad becoming an entertainment device rather than an educational tool.  Because of this experience and other similar stories, we are distributing the iPad with a limited number of apps pre-installed.  A mixture of paid and free apps that can easily be integrated into traditional classroom activities will be provided.

Students and teachers will have Pages for word processing, Keynote for presentations and animation,  iMovie for video creation,  Safari and Chrome for web research, and a few other powerful applications.

With the limited number of apps, teachers can concentrate on getting the students accustomed to using iPads on a daily basis.  This will also be a great way to get our teachers, some of which have never used iPads with their students, comfortable in using these powerful devices in class.  Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of wonderful apps that can be used by teachers in the classroom. I just believe that introducing targeted apps over time will make them more effective. What do you think?

Let us know @iTeachManor.