101 ideas for using technology in the classroom

Transient

Sometimes it is difficult to put the technology in your classroom into an educational context.  This document contains many ideas for using a PC or mac in education.  

Unfortunately much of it was written prior to the uprise of the iPad so there is no reference to it but nonetheless there is plenty of relevant content for teachers and students. 

Many of the ideas come from the Victorian department of Education, Australia and can be downloaded here. 

Great tech support site for teachers and students

Tech Ease is a great resource for teachers and students to learn about computers and basic tech support.  It is is broken down into Mac, Windows, and accessibility uses.

Under each, there are subtopics such as using computers in the classroom, images, file sharing, chat, videos, email, hardware, the internet, and much more. There are ideas on using technology for accessibility with disabled students also.

Tech Ease is easy to navigate and has a huge amount of information available for educators. This is site you should definitely share with your colleagues and students.

Powder Toy for Mac

We get loads of visitors stop by for the PC version of "Powder Toy" The Powder Toy is a desktop version of the classic 'falling sand' physics sandbox game, it simulates air pressure and velocity as well as heat!

But we often forget to put up the latest version of Powder Toy for Mac.  So here it is.

The best free alternatives for all your favourite software

Alternativeto is a great web resource that allows you to find either both free or commercial alternatives to your favourite piece of software.  For instance when I searched for a free alternative to Nero Burning ROM AlternativeTo offered me 15 alternatives.

You can filter by platform and all software is rated by users to see what is worth downloading and what is worth leaving behind.

I will use this quite a bit over the next few months as I put together a new image for our 200 new machines arriving at the end of the year.   Check it out for yourself here.

How to fix 90 percent of your IT Problems

I feel almost stupid writing this but it is just the stupid reality of using and relying upon IT to get us through the day.  The hundreds of times teachers and students come to me and tell me about a problem with their computer that is fixed by a restart is amazing.  In fact I am suggesting it is around 90 percent of the time.  We have a motto here that an IT problem is not a problem until you have rebooted the computer.  That's the best tech support advice I can give anyone alongside backing up your work regularly.  RESTART Guys

 

BeeDocs 3D Time-Line Generator - Ultra Cool Timelines for Mac

What is it?  Beedocs 3D Timeline Generator takes the boring old linear timeline format and gives it a Mac Keynote Style twist by allowing you and your students to create 3D time lines you can navigate along and zoom in and out to see both  the explicit detail and overall at your own leisure.  This is clearly the best looking timeline tool I have seen and as a bit of history buff I can really see its potential.  It is really quite simple to use as you can see from the very unusual forest set instructional video below.  Bee docs 3D timeline contains loads of pre designed templates you can hit the ground running with or customise until you heart is content.   The good news is that that you can integrate them into your keynote but they do not have an instant embed to web feature which would have made this a clean winner for me.  You can download it for a free trial here but it will set you back $65  for the full version which is reasonable for this product but their educational licensing needs to come down dramatically to get this into mainstream education and it would be great to see it on Windows too one day.  All in all a pretty cool product that might be of real value for a history teacher but a bit to one dimensional and expensive for my liking as a whole school educational license at the moment.

How can I integrate this into the classroom?  Well - I would really recommend making a timeline... Check out the vids below for some real insight and inspiration and let me know what you think of it.