Archive for the “Software and Skills” Category

Google Docs is great for some things but the new Drive format sure has a lot of stuff. Here is a neat viewing tip:

This may be old hat to some serious Google Docs users, but I use Docs every day and just stumbled on this trick when the fine folks at The Next Web pointed it out. Instead of clicking on a collection name to open it and see the document list, click the drop-down arrow next to the collection name, select "Open," and you'll be treated to a preview mode of the collection, with a thumbnail of each document on the right and a list of docs on the left. Better yet, if you want to preview the documents individually, make sure your focus is in that sidebar to the left (click on any empty space) and then use the up and down arrows to bring up the full doc in the window to the right. It's a bit faster than clicking through the list of documents individually, or moving in and out of collections just to preview what's in them.


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This is pretty informative and shows just how easy it is!

Making webapps and 'real' apps is explained and some really practical ideas.  Nice!

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Been a busy week or so for things coming through the RSS and in the different projects I am involved in.

Some of the more interesting ones….

Learning and Teaching:

* Another list of top 10's but interesting to note the alignment in the thinking that these have around specific trends.  Comparing with the CORE 10 Trends for example –  There are more and more references to this mag (for the ipad) assuming it is at the same sort of level as the Edutopia site which is a pretty meteoric rise.

* iPads v Laptops – short but good post outlining the benefits-pitfalls of each

* Alllanahs great google site on iPads in education.  Have iPads you need to have a look here.  Deal Extreme ( is a good place to get some of this sort of gear and they do free international postage.

* Harvard Teaching for Understanding Framework.  I came across this through some work in the Future Schools in Singapore.  Similar to Inquiry but project based and more teacher directed.  Some great reflective questions and resources.  A site worth taking the time to browse around.

* The spaces we learn in are critical.  The size of the bodies makes no difference to this truth but it is often only the smaller ones we think about.  The Reggio philosophy for example has a specific focus on the physical classroom as a 'teacher' for chidlren.  I have always had a fascination with this and the Learning Spaces space on the Enabling eLearning site has some great links and resources.  Have a look if you are planning any upgrades ….

* quite a different view on learning.  Good to challenge yourself a bit ….

* GREAT post about using data.  The importance of collaboration in making OTJ's and for the learning of the team.


Geeky Stuff:

* tips and tricks with iOS.  Slow to navigate but some geeky wee things

* Some people have just too much time on their hands!!

* Interesting new player in the ISP game in NZ.  Very different pricing model and getting the squeeze from the big boys after less than a week it would seem.

* iPads and other tablets now account for 40% of the mobile broadband market globally.  WOW!  There has been talk of the inevitability of BYOD …. so it is happening even if it is not sanctioned by the school.  I know our kids friends tether to each others devices to get around school filtering to get to facebook at break times for instance.  There are increasing numbers of 'how to' and 'readiness' posts on the BYOD topic – heres another good one.

* speed up the reaction time of the home button on your iPhone – this worked!!

* Slow motion capture on the iPhone …. not actually tried it but sounds great for PE skills.


Other things:

* There was a blog I used to follow ages ago with lots of these wee venn diagrammes. this is a snappy but still useful list of things to think about.  With reference to rutts – I once heard them described as a grave with the ends knocked out … mmmm

* photography posing guide – the series of these are great!  This is the couples one but they cover all sorts of situations.  Could share with older kids to work on their composition and shortcut to 'what works' too.

* find free Kindle books – the good ones, the best sellers.

* A Blog title designed to get attention but some wonderfully funny and cleverly written posts – Stuff white people like

* creating success quickly as a key factor in development.  Leadership Freak blog is a great place for succinct leadership tips.  This is important in our work as Facilitators as well ….

* If you need something special in the clothing line and want to go custom made.

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At a recent BeL team meeting we were trying to work out how to convince an iPad to upload files downloaded as an email attachment.  This is the kind of thing you will need to do to add to Moodle etc.

This is one of the things that prevents an iPad from being the ONLY device you can use.  Still need the laptop for some things 🙂

The next day I stumbled on this in my RSS reader – Thanks Darren!


You know how annoying it is when you can’t upload files from the iPad because there is no native file browser?

Well, any web app which allows embedding can ‘host’ Dropbox files. It’s very simple: Go to your Dropbox app on the iPad.

Tap on the file you want ‘uploaded’ and tap on the little paperclip icon top right.

Choose ‘Copy link to clipboard’

Go into the application you want the file to upload to. We use Edmodo, which allows embedding, but it might be a wiki, or Weebly, for example.

Find your way to the embed function on the web app and paste in the link.

There you have it! Your iPad has just uploaded a file.

…. Just don’t tell it as it may take offence.


Love it!!


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Laurimar school – Melbourne.
Growing very fast and 300ish kids at the moment and soon to be 600+ and 900+ in near future.
Microsofts vision for 2019

Support site with lots of information HERE. This is well worth having a look through!

Gone for an ASI 10″ tablet netbook. Making it clear to community etc that the technology will change and will upgrade at some point. Very robust option chosen.
* Absolutely essential to get rock-solid wireless in place.
* Pedagogical support essential as well.
* relationship with providers – servicing, etc – essential as well!
* practical things like storage, invoicing families, etc all good to think through WELL.

100% uptake from families …. but took careful planning and ‘selling’ to staff and community.
$296pa per unit – includes insurance ($50 excess) and all other costs. 3yr warranty. Have to factor in Tec support as well.

* software licensing issues – school has licensing that individuals can’t access as cheaply.
* leasing v’s owning a the end of the lease period. Parents can purchase at end of period at market cost.

Edustar – free image (mac or PC) supplied by Victorian govt – LINK

Digital Portfolio integral part of programme.

iPad programme – going for iPads (probably) next time/ from now on.

Ongoing monitoring essential as well!

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link to site HERE
lots more ideas on Wallwisher HERE

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I am doing a presentation at ULearn on using Web2.0 tools in our professional lives and will upload here once ready …. I like this video and will have a play with RescueTime to see what feedback it gives … mmm.

For some reason imbed codes are not working at the moment ….grrrrr!!!

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