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12 Feb 2013
Comments: 4

Greathouse’s GREAT Curricular Use of Puppet Pals

Greathouse’s middle school class has done it again (check out their first iLesson using Explain Everything)! Rather than have students read the entire chapter on climate, she created an iJigsaw app-tivity. Students were divided into groups and assigned  a section of the climate chapter to summarize and report on. They were given the freedom to choose how and which app would be best to present the content they were responsible for.

Given the freedom to shine, this group chose Puppet Pals and really did the app and the content justice, if I do say so myself.

Check out Puppet Pals Featured Videos

Can’t get enough of Puppet Pals? Have you seen Puppet Pals 2? Test out the FREE version but I have a feeling you will end up buying the All Access Pass.

Puppet Pals 2: Characters, Props, Soundtracks, Zoomable/Panning Sets and More!

FREEBIES and GOODIES OH MY!

TechChef4u now offers a Doc Locker full of freebies and goodies that can be used in the classroom. Lots of resources and templates can be found in the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker. Just sign up using the form below and you will receive an email shortly with a secret link to the site and password to nab your freebies.

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07 Feb 2013
Comments: 1

Appy Girl

I recently posted a blog showcasing a scrapbook created by sister-in-law and her daughter using the ScrapPad app (which has recently gone FREE). Today, I would like to share another crafty delight from Mel’s Happy Scrappy Place. Enamored with her Frankengirl and Pumpkin Spice Girl, I asked her to create an Appy Girl. While she created the final product using mixed media. Her initial sketch (to the right) was designed using the Sketchbook Pro app.

While I tend to focus on strictly core curriculum designed iLessons, I always a enjoy a crafty diversion – especially when it showcases how individuals in other fields and careers use the iPad to achieve productivity and support creative tasks.

Check out the finished product!

If you are interested in a custom piece for yourself or a loved one, you can contact her at melissajohnson8@gmail.com

Tell her the TechChef sent you 😉

Appy Girl

While I am certainly not this artistic (with or without the iPad), I wanted to leave you with a List.ly list of apps that can be used to draw on the iPad. Vote for your favorite. This list is crowd ranked.

Drawing Apps

View more lists from Lisa Johnson
 

FREEBIES and GOODIES OH MY!

TechChef4u now offers a Doc Locker full of freebies and goodies that can be used in the classroom. Lots of resources and templates can be found in the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker. Just sign up using the form below and you will receive an email shortly with a secret link to the site and password to nab your freebies.

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04 Feb 2013
Comments: 4

iVocabulary

Reunited…for a workshop at TCEA, Yolanda Barker and I will be presenting “iVocabulary” at TCEA 2013.

iVocabulary Workshop Description:  Reading, Writing, Listening, and Speaking are integral to developing language. This session will utilize the four skills to focus on multiple ways to develop vocabulary utilizing mobile devices in the iClassroom. The tour of resources will include specific content-based glossary apps and apps that allow you to create your own flashcards and personal glossaries (e.g. Quizlet) and apptivities that extend the vocabulary (e.g. creating a Frayer model in Popplet Lite or a vocabulary sorting activity in iCardSort). Vocabulary development will increase with use of video creation utilizing apps like Mad Lips and Puppet Pals. Writing and Reading will be supported with annotation apps (e.g. Notability, PaperPort Notes) and book creation apps (e.g. Scribble Press, Albums FX Lite). The session will culminate with “surprisingly educational” apps that support the four skills (e.g. StoryLines for Schools and TypeDrawing for Free).

Thinglink Framework: Yolanda’s graphically inclined hubby created a Scrabble board to house all of the links for the course. 8 List.ly lists of apps, a Prezi of samples, and much more is hidden in the image below.

A Prezi of iVocab products was created to showcase products and samples for each of the 8 app categories.

FREEBIES and GOODIES OH MY!

TechChef4u now offers a Doc Locker full of freebies and goodies that can be used in the classroom. Lots of resources and templates can be found in the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker. Just sign up using the form below and you will receive an email shortly with a secret link to the site and password to nab your freebies.

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30 Jan 2013
Comments: 1

For the Crafty at Heart

Yesterday, I posted a scrapbook of the pics from the “Life of an Eanes Pioneer Child” iBook release party created using the free ScrapPad Movie Night app. Today, I wanted to showcase my very crafty and talented sister-in-law’s creations using the ScrapPad app (which just so happens to be FREE for a limited time… normally $4.99). She used the app with her 4 year old daughter to showcase their trip to the pumpkin patch.

Pumpkin Patch scrapbook created by Melissa Johnson using the ScrapPad app


 
Here is what she had to say about the experience: “This app was really fun and easy to use. I am typically a paper scrapper, but the user friendly design of this app could just turn me into a digi scrapper! My four year old daughter helped me create this book. She enjoyed browsing through all of the different elements and helping me choose and place them on the page.”

Pumpkin Patch scrapbook created by Melissa Johnson using the ScrapPad app


 
While the album was in progress, she showed it to her 13 year old daughter. Melissa went on to tell me that her teenage daughter “now has plans to stealthe iPad and create one for herself!” Honestly, what a great way to make memories and share stories digitally.

Pumpkin Patch scrapbook created by Melissa Johnson using the ScrapPad app


 
Though these photos are scrapped based on a family experience, this app-tivity could easily be translated to classroom activities (e.g. “Life of an Eanes Pioneer Child” iBook release party created using the free ScrapPad Movie Night app). If students are part of a 1:1, what a cool family activity that would be to integrate the iPad to create a show and tell for an event or tell a story.

Pumpkin Patch scrapbook created by Melissa Johnson using the ScrapPad app


 
If you app-reciate Melissa’s style, check out her art journaling and scrapbooking blog. I can’t take credit for her craftiness nor creativity, but I did play a part in introducing her to Snapguide to create tutorials for people who would like to be artisitc and crafty (check out her Snapguides here).

FREEBIES and GOODIES OH MY!

TechChef4u now offers a Doc Locker full of freebies and goodies that can be used in the classroom. Lots of resources and templates can be found in the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker. Just sign up using the form below and you will receive an email shortly with a secret link to the site and password to nab your freebies.

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27 Jan 2013
Comments: 4

Designing Interactivity

By now I am sure you all know I am a bit of an apple fan girl. I have to say that the devices play very well with each other. In preparation for two poster sessions at FETC next week, I began working on a resource that people could take away that would be visual and informative… and perhaps even interactive.

I began creating the resource using the Designs for Pages app on my iPad to create the image below and then emailed the file as a Pages document in order to make some final edits (screenshots tend to be easier) on my Mac. Then it was a matter of saving the doc as an image and uploading it to Thinglink where the interactivity begins… If you look closely, you can even get a sneak peek at the resources for the “iVocabulary” workshop which will be offered at TCEA 2013 in two weeks.

FREEBIES and GOODIES OH MY!

TechChef4u now offers a Doc Locker full of freebies and goodies that can be used in the classroom. Lots of resources and templates can be found in the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker. Just sign up using the form below and you will receive an email shortly with a secret link to the site and password to nab your freebies.

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23 Jan 2013
Comments: 0

The Life of an Eanes Pioneer Child

I have to say I am just as overjoyed and proud to share Laura Wright’s student-created interactive iBook as I was a year ago when “Hot Apps 4 HOTS” was published. Her 3rd grade students have truly assembled a historical (and dare I say… adorable) publication to honor the heritage of the Eanes Pioneer Child.

The 49 page book includes 9 chapters with multiple sections in each:

  1. Chapter 1: Gone To Texas!
  2. Chapter 2: Pioneer Homes
  3. Chapter 3: Pioneer Food
  4. Chapter 4: Pioneer Chores
  5. Chapter 5: Pioneer Fun
  6. Chapter 6: Pioneer School
  7. Chapter 7: Pioneer Danger
  8. Chapter 8: Pioneer Hospitality
  9. Chapter 9: Giving Thanks

The book includes beautiful sepia filled photos taken at the Eanes History Center, Eanes Historical Cemetery, and the Eanes-Marshall Ranch House. Several apps aided the production of the book including Garage Band to compose their own pioneer music, Pages to aid in writing, and iMovie for video editing.

The Life of an Eanes Pioneer Child

The entire book was assembled using a MacBook Pro and iBook Author. Truly, swiping through the pages of this delightful book, you can tell much care was taken by the students to produce their best work in an authentic learning environment. Laura Wright even includes a “How’d They Do That?” section at the end of the book that further details the project.

The Life of an Eanes Pioneer Child

In her credits, she gave me a shout-out, but truly I want to thank her for inspiring us all and raising the bar on what students can create on the iPad and assembling such a authentic learning treasure and digital delight.

FREEBIES and GOODIES OH MY!

TechChef4u now offers a Doc Locker full of freebies and goodies that can be used in the classroom. Lots of resources and templates can be found in the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker. Just sign up using the form below and you will receive an email shortly with a secret link to the site and password to nab your freebies.

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03 Jan 2013
Comments: 5

English Stripped Down Continued…

Last semester (it feels so long ago when I say it like that), I shared a “Stripped Down” series that showcased how students are using cartoon apps like Strip Designer and Comic Life to showcase learning across the curriculum.

The “Stripped Down” series included:

  • Science and Social Studies Stripped Down which showcased Laura Wright’s Class Bat research and Lisa Carnazzo’s class study of landforms.
  • History Stripped Down which featured Fiske’s class analysis of the key figures in the Enlightenment and included a student app review of Strip Designer.
  • English Stripped Down kicked the series off with a student-created rendition of a Hero’s Tale and a Beowulf retelling.
  • Digital Artifacts (while not part of the original series) shared a primary example of how Strip Designer could be used to showcase learning in the form of a pattern scavenger hunt.

As we are all returning to school shortly (or have already started back), I thought I would revive the series with two more student-created graphic novels created by Westlake HS Students. Both of the strips were created with the Strip Designer app which was provisioned for each high school student through the self service app on their iPad to support this type of product creation.

Rockysseus: I love that students used a combination of filtered actual photos, hand drawings, and captions to showcase their Hero’s journey. Also love the text which denotes scene changes, plot highlights, and supernatural intervention.

Rockysseus created by Westlake HS students using Strip Designer

The Lion King Odyssey: This comic presupposes that Mufaseus lived. I enjoyed how the students showcased point of view and how they were “playing” each one of the characters. The idea of incorporating Lion King pics and storyline allowed for a fractured fairytale or mock fan fiction element and was truly engaging.

The Lion King Odyssey created by Westlake HS students using Strip Designer

Westlake HS students are part of a 1:1 iPad initiative. More info about this project can be viewed here (Read my observations during a recent site visit). The Board at Eanes ISD recently approved the 1:1 iPad initiative for K-12 students (view board presentation here)!

FREEBIES and GOODIES OH MY!

TechChef4u now offers a Doc Locker full of freebies and goodies that can be used in the classroom. Lots of resources and templates can be found in the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker. Just sign up using the form below and you will receive an email shortly with a secret link to the site and password to nab your freebies.

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02 Jan 2013
Comments: 3

Sharing App-thusiasm for iLearning!

When I started my blog almost two years ago, I had no idea that it would have the reach that it does. I merely wanted to create a space to display resources for my campus and district in a more user-friendly fashion than a static website and carve out a nook to archive all of the ideas that float around in my head and showcase the ones I get to observe each day as I walk the halls.

Sharing App-thusiasm and iResources: As I mentioned in my last post, blogging is one of those art forms that is time-consuming but rewarding in so many ways. The idea of speaking from your heart and sharing resources has become more and more common place. When someone reaches out from cyberland and makes a human connection, I am instantly reminded why I spend countless hours blogging and sharing:

“I love that so many are so generous with ideas and help each other grow.

It all boils down to helping kids for me.”

“Thanks for the inspiration to create, have fun and open doors for my kids.”

I received the above comments from Debbie Rice in San Jose, California who works for a school district that is testing the feasibility of 1:1 iPads. She had been following my site since May and app-reciated all of the resources shared in my prolific posts. She went on to share that she teaches a class of students with high functioning autism and the students have greatly benefitted instructionally from the devices.

I felt truly touched by Debbie’s kind words but found myself even more blessed to find that she too had begun to share and share alike… a treasure trove of iResources and student products! Projects ranged from advice letters to Rudolph and Island of the Blue Dolphins book reports using Scribble Press to probability and pumpkin math investigations using Popplet. Students even dabbled in augmented reality to create a Virtual Book Review Board using Aurasma. One of my favorites was flower dissection using Popplet as I had never considered using Popplet to annotate over an image. App-solutely Brilliant!

iLesson Collage Created with Picture2Life site.

Sparking Love for iLearning: Similarly, I presented a session on the 1 iPad Classroom and iProductivity at a TCEA event in Frisco where I was a featured speaker. One of the attendees, Taylor Clark, was a high school senior who had tagged along with her mother and shared her thoughts on the two sessions:

“You sparked in me a new love for learning that I didn’t have before. I have come back to school (I am a high school senior) and told every single one of my teachers what I learned from your sessions.

Thank you so much for what you do!”

She went on to say: “You were very animated with your presentation, which I believe always holds people’s attention. Also, your information was just superb, after your sessions I felt like I was on tech overload and needed a apple detox program (in a good way). It would be wonderful to see you again, I truly loved your sessions. In a world of educational negativity (at least in my area), people like you continue to lift spirits and relight sparks of a love for learning!”

App-thusiasm created with Designs for Pages app


 
As we embark in to 2013, I wanted to thank all of you who blog, create, and publish resources online for your creativity and gift of time. Additionally, much gratitude goes to those of you who curate and consume these resources. The collaboration between minds and iClassrooms has just begun. And truly we do it all to ultimately benefit our students!

Every day I power on my Mac or mobile device, I am truly inspired by the level of  innovation and technology integration I locate via blogs and social networks. Many of these blogs are showcased here on the “33 Best Educational Technology Blogs” list (which TechChef4u was nominated).

FREEBIES and GOODIES OH MY!

TechChef4u now offers a Doc Locker full of freebies and goodies that can be used in the classroom. Lots of resources and templates can be found in the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker. Just sign up using the form below and you will receive an email shortly with a secret link to the site and password to nab your freebies.

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27 Dec 2012
Comments: 2

Hot Apps 4 HOTS goes Dutch

It was just about this time of year last year when Yolanda and I were frantically working to finish “Hot Apps 4 HOTS” and get it submitted to the iBook store before TCEA. Well wouldn’t you know it, a year later there have been close to 20,000 international downloads and the first Dutch translation of the published iResource:

“Hot Apps 4 HOTS” goes Dutch

I have taken the liberty to translate Dico’s blog entry about the Dutch version below using Google Translate. The entire resource is available for FREE with a tweet or like. I feel quite honored that Dico valued the book enough to painstakenly translate and recreate it for other educators to app-reciate in their native language.

Blog Translation

As I was preparing for this post, I stumbled upon another Dutch blog showcasing the Explain Everything projects students created in science class before the holiday break. This always brings a smile to my face. Those of you that blog know the work is tireless and you never truly know who is reading or who is impacted unless they speak out or contact you. I hope I have not butchered this Dutch saying “Waar het hart vol van is, stroomt de mond van over” , but truly my heart is full this holiday season and my keyboard will go on… Thank you to all of you who share my app-thusiasm for iLearning and making a difference in the iClassroom. As we look forward to 2013, remember “Zonder mijn en dijn zou de wereld een hemel zijn” which I believe loosely translates to mean share and share alike will make for a better world. (More Dutch Sayings).

Another Dutch Blog highlighting TechChef4u content

FREEBIES and GOODIES OH MY!

TechChef4u now offers a Doc Locker full of freebies and goodies that can be used in the classroom. Lots of resources and templates can be found in the Creatively Productive Digital Downloads Doc Locker. Just sign up using the form below and you will receive an email shortly with a secret link to the site and password to nab your freebies.

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21 Dec 2012
Comments: 6

My Journey to Become an iVenger…

Little did I know that my visit to Westlake HS’s iPad 1:1 initiative last spring would be the beginnings of a complete life change. For two years, I made the dreaded commute to San Antonio from New Braunfels (my husband made this commute for 5). Constantly asked by coworkers if I would ever move back to San Antonio to lessen the commute, I always replied, “We will NEVER leave New Braunfels!”

… Over my last year with NEISD (I clearly was not aware that it was my last), I communicated with Carl Hooker (#bigdeal… even collaborated to make him a B-day video below) and would run into him at various events and even co-present with Jon Samuelson at ISTE and Mobile 2012. I also had both Carl and Jon on my radio show “appy hours 4 u“.  Gotta say I drank the Eanes koolaid and fell in love. When a 1:1 job presented itself, I felt there was truly only one decision to make.
 
 

 
While my family dabbled in the New Braunfels/Austin commute for a a few months, it soon became apparent that our lives were no longer in New Braunfels and our house no longer felt like home. Flash forward six months… I am living and working in Austin with my family. I feel very blessed to have the app-ortunity to work with such an amazing staff at HCMS and to have joined the epic likes of the iVengers. I look forward to many more years of iTriumphs and epicocity!
 
 

FREEBIES and GOODIES OH MY!

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