Wednesday, 31 March 2010

Skitch - Why I love it

Hi there,
You you ever wanted to draw on photos and share them?
Have you ever wanted to use your Wacom Bamboo tablet to draw on a PDF easily?
Do you like to share pictures via Twitter?
Do you have Chinese or another language in your school that has a script and you want to be able to write with the characters on either photos or pdfs?

Today I found Skitch by Plasq online. It is a free program that you can download. Get it here SKITCH

I have been looking into how my school can become more paperless. We use Studywiz and it drives us to become more digital. Now with a tablet or even just the Macbook track pad - kids can write digitally on pdfs and send them back to the teacher. Imagine the possibilities ... Maths, Science, note taking directly onto pdf textbooks ... making comments on photos ... typing pinyin on pictures in Chinese lessons - wow ... there are so many possibilities.

Uploaded with plasq's Skitch!

Spore Creature Creator

To make the characters for your digital story ... you can use Spore Creature Creator. I made this bird today by using the program.

Uploaded with plasq's Skitch!

Watch this great tutorial from You Tube

Digital Stories for the iPad - Part Three

Part Three

Problem -- The challenge your character must face and overcome
Without a problem, your story would be dull. When you give your main character a problem to solve, your story comes alive. Be sure to make it a big enough problem.

Important tip:
Use the magic of conflict. Conflict means someone or something tries to stop your character from solving the problem. The more times your hero tries and fails, the better.

Ask yourself these questions:
• What is your main character's problem?
• Is it a big enough problem that it will take a whole story to solve it?
• How does your main character try and fail to solve her or his problem?

Write about your story problem - make a screen capture and upload it to the Story Problem Gallery in Studywiz. Comment on 5 different students work.

Next ... Spore Creature Creator - Advanced Tutorial

Digital Stories for the iPad - Part Two

Like every good thing that is based in technology, without quality content ... well you basically have nothing but dazzle. Whenever I begin a project with a class I always focus hard on the content first. That's why in order to make a digital story ... we will focus on the story writing just as much as the digital part. Here is part two of Digital Stories for the iPad ...

Setting -- Where your story takes place
Every story needs to take place somewhere. Your story's setting can have either a big or little impact on the story.

Ask yourself these questions:
• Where does your story take place -- on the moon, in Hawaii, inside your dad's nose, or someplace completely different?
• When does your story take place: past, present or future?
• How much does your setting affect your main character's problem?

Answer these questions be replying to the discussion thread in Studywiz in the Technology section of Gr 6 Curriculum.

Monday, 29 March 2010

Digital Stories for the iPad - Part One

Today in Grade 6 we started our digital story making for the soon to be released iPad. The students are writing a children's story about either animals or insects - or both! To start things rolling we went to the school library to look at traditional picture book stories. I gave the instructions to the students via our school LMS which is Studywiz. Here are the instructions for the lesson today:

Task 1
Find 3 picture books in the library and read them. Choose the one that you think would suit to make into an eBook. (this is for ideas only - do not copy the story)

Task 2
Your Own Main Character -- The animal or insect your story is about

Every story starts with a main character. For this story it can be any animal or insect you want it to be. One suggestion: try choosing a main character you like to draw.
Start by asking yourself some questions:
• Who is your main character?
• What does he, she or it like/dislike?
• What is your character's personality?
• What does your character look like?

Task 3
Draw a character web. Put your main character's name in the circle in the middle, and all of his or her characteristics in different circles connecting to the character circle.
Use Inspiration to make your character web.
Upload your character web to Studywiz in the Character Web gallery to share.

Here is one example of a Character Web created by a student in the lesson this morning.

Thursday, 25 March 2010

My eBook - Movie Making for Kids

I made this eBook using this site
It has been viewed 35000 times!!

Myebook - Movie Making for Kids - click here to open my ebook

Friday, 5 March 2010

The Ingenuity of 10 yr Olds

Today, I learned of a 'do it yourself' invisible folder for your Mac. A Grade 5 student here from Sinarmas World Academy was working on his school laptop and I noticed that he had several invisible folders on his desktop. I asked him about them and he told me that he had made his own version of Camouflage which can be downloaded from

Here's what the invisible folder looks like:

It looks like my desktop is empty. But actually I have an invisible folder there. You can click Tab to see it or swipe the mouse over.

See what I mean? Pretty cool huh!

To make this invisible folder, all you do it create a 3 X 3cm square in Photoshop or Pixelmator and make the background transparent by using the magic wand.

Then you export the file as a .gif and drop it into Img2icns software to create a folder out of it.

There you go .... your own invisible folder for secret documents.

Thanks to Riam Tambunan from Grade 5 for this cool technology tip.

Monday, 1 March 2010

SWA Radio's First Broadcast

Today we launched our school's online radio - SWA Radio. We had our first broadcast at 7.30am this morning. It went well with 49 listeners online. We were able to track our listeners through Nice Cast which is the radio software that we use to broadcast.