Showing posts from February, 2010

ICE Poster Session 2/26/10

Here's my poster presentation for the ICE Conference on 2/26/10. I plan to display this on a monitor while having a few laptops to facilitate individual conversations. Below the Prezi is my conference handout that discusses our experience and outcomes with links to materials and exemplars. For other links and handouts from ICE 2010, click here.

Google Apps @ETHS on Prezi Handout:

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Reflections at ICE (General Conference) 2/25/10

Day 2 at ICE (for me) brought a renewed sense of creativity and interest in using our Smartboards and training our teachers on ways to effectively create lessons in Notebook. First, I saw a presentation on document cameras, and although this was my first time at ICE, it seemed like the Mega Center (Exhibitors Hall) was "mega" into DC's and SmartBoards. Every aisle had vendors hawking their own version of Smart Notebook and different cameras. At ETHS, we don't have too many document cameras out there, but I could see rolling a few out to departments and/or the Staff Tech Center. I would guess that teachers would find these a bit easier and more intuitive than a traditional scanner.

Later in the day, I attended "SMART 202", a very lively presentation given by Bret Gensburg. Engaging, humorous, and vivacious, Bret held the attention of a standing room audience for 45 minutes strong, and people were still cramming into the room at the end. Bret inspired…

ICE Conference - GarageBand and Podcasting Workshop

This week is the Illinois Computer Educators (cleverly shortened as "ICE") conference held in St. Charles, IL. As mentioned in previous posts, I'll be making my first poster session this Friday on Google Apps at ETHS. Until then, I'm soaking in as much as possible on Tuesday and Thursday. Today, I attended a full day workshop on GarageBand and Podcasting for Beginners. Led by Debra Segiet, the workshop provided ample time to dive into GarageBand, learn the basics of the interface, and allowed attendees to create their own podcast (see below for my feeble attempt). As usual with Apple products, I found the software fairly easy to learn, and I found myself getting so focused on perfecting my final composition. I can only imagine how students (with their own creativity) will also get lost in the ability to create something artistic and reasonably polished in such a short amount of time. I'm quickly running through all of the projects that I could see teachers…

The Prezi Shift

So, I stumbled upon a post on really bad PowerPoints, and I will admit that I was breaking nearly all of the "rules" that Seth mentions in his article. Later that day, I viewed Steve Jobs' keynote on the iPad, and I noticed that he pretty much followed along with the "rules" as well. I decided to reform myself and my next few presentations had fewer words, richer images, and allowed for more conversation. And then I rediscovered Prezi. A colleague of mine had recommended the tool awhile back, but I had not found the time to truly explore. I chose to use the tool for my upcoming poster session at ICE, and it was then that I also learned of the free educator/student license which allowed for more storage, private content, and no watermark.  In terms of ease of use and features, I found Prezi fairly simple to grasp, and I only had to search for help on a few items.  I really like the "wow" factor of the zooming presentation, but I can imagine that t…

Dongle-itis: The search continues for the best wireless connection to the projector: PC2TV, Atlona, Epson

The past two weeks have been filled with a lot of requests and troubleshooting for our Tablet PC's and how they wirelessly connect to the projector.  Currently, we have two major systems in place.

For our Toshiba Tablets, we've been using Internetvue 2100 PC2TV adaptors.  On the Tablet, a user will open a program (PC2TV) and connect wirelessly to the projector.  I used this when I was teaching chemistry with a tablet last year, and I found it to be a bit clunky at times, but overall relatively stable.  There was an issue with the firmware update that disabled portrait mode as a viewing option.  Internetvue responded by allowing for a firmware downgrade, but that's a lot of legwork for our teachers.  Consequently, I refused the firmware upgrade for a long time as a teacher, but this meant closing a message box every time I connected.  I have since been upgrading the firmware and telling users that portrait mode will not be enabled. 

This year, with the Lenovo x61's tha…