Tag Archives: Glow

Syndication not Silos⤴

from @ wwwd – John's World Wide Wall Display

I just saw a provocative link from Aaron Davis, down with syndication, it was a reply on his site to an original post with that title by Ben Weirdmuller.

Arron has be a great example of an educator exploring the IndieWeb of which Ben is a major proponent.

Ben’s post is concerned with the idea of gaining more independence from the silos (twitter, Facebook and the like) and publishing more on his site. A lot of IndieWeb concepts involve publishing to your own site and sending links or repeating the posts across social media (like a link to this one will be auto posted to Twitter).

In his post Ben writes of leaving the silos behind completely. Just keeping things on his own site:

I think it might be more effective to move all the value away: publish on your own site, and use independent readers like Woodwind or Newsblur to consume content. Forget using social networks as the conduit. Let’s go full indie.

Ben mentions IndieWeb readers, that allow folk to create their own ‘syndication’ and reply, bookmark etc on their own site.

Nothing I’d disagree with there. I am quite shallow and enjoy likes, especially from Instagram coming a back to my blog via brid.gy but, in theory, I love the idea of full independence.

The provocation, to me came from the word Syndication. Before I’d heard of IndieWeb I’d been involved in DS106. This means that for me syndication means something different than a silo. To me a syndication is something set up for a group, long or short term that can be completely separate from any silos. DS106, and many other educational syndications uses a WordPress blog to syndicate content from other sites. Alan Levine, @cogdog, has set up many examples of this sort of thing.

When I was involved in the migration of Glow Blogs one of the features I managed to get included was a syndication plugin. This took quite a lot of insistence on my part, but the University of Dundee and Derek Robinson have certainly made that worthwhile with EduShare which syndicates trainee teacher reflections. 1

These non-silo syndications are, if not a gateway drug to the IndieWeb, a great way to get people considering how and where they publish to the web and how community could be built.

These syndications can be used for long running or short projects 2, the participants don’t need the expertise beyond setting up a blog. You can participate in different communities from the same blog.

The great thing about a syndication is that the content doesn’t go away if the syndication does. Any discussion can take place on the participating sites. All the hub does is make it easy to read and make connections. Micro.blog reminds me of this in many ways, although the participants are not grouped round a class or topic.

Now I am thinking I should do a lot more to publicise the possibilities for syndication in Glow Blogs.

Featured image: Silos | Darko Pevec | Flickr Creative Commons — Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic — CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

  1. The UoD is by far the biggest and best example of syndication in Glow Blogs. I’ve used it for a couple of smaller examples but it is IMO one of the features of Glow that could be used much more widely.
  2. A example of a short aggregation I organised on Glow Blogs Blogging Bootcamp #2 | Get your blogs up and running Autumn 2015

Creating a Multi-user Collaborative Presentation with Microsoft PowerPoint Online⤴

from @ ICT for Learning & Teaching in Falkirk Schools

The go-to presentation-creation tool for many teachers and pupils is PowerPoint. So as your pupils are already familiar with using Microsoft PowerPoint then consider using Microsoft PowerPoint Online available to all Glow users in Scottish schools as part of Microsoft Office 365. PowerPoint Online is available anytime, anywhere with online access so can be accessed at home or at school.

You can upload an existing PowerPoint presentation from your computer or other device to your OneDrive in Office 365 in Glow (and then edit online from then onwards) or you can simply log into your OneDrive and create a new PowerPoint presentation completely online. You can choose to keep the presentation private to you in your own OneDrive (the online cloud storage with massive capacity available to every Glow user in Scottish schools). Or you can, at any time, choose to make a PowerPoint Online presentation visible to other users of your choice – and you can choose whether to allow them to just be able to view it or show it without being able to make changes, or you can give other users the access rights to be able to jointly edit the presentation with you, either at exactly the same time as you or at different times to suit each user.

Have a look at the Sway presentation here for a step-by-step guide for learners to create a PowerPoint presentation in PowerPoint Online in their OneDrive in Microsoft office 365 via Glow and to share this with other Glow users to be able to jointly edit the same presentation.

 

The link below take you to a classroom activity for pupils to use PowerPoint Online to create (jointly with other pupils on different devices at the same time) a robot character. The step-by-step guide to this activity can be adapted for other curricular-specific tasks which would benefit from a group of pupils working collaboratively on the same PowerPoint presentation, whether simultaneously or at different times:

Passing the Power of Powerpoint

Real-time multi-user collaboration in Microsoft Word Online⤴

from @ ICT for Learning & Teaching in Falkirk Schools

So are your pupils are already familiar with using Microsoft Word? Then why not consider using Microsoft Word Online available to all Glow users in Scottish schools as part of Microsoft Office 365. Word Online is available anytime, anywhere with online access so can be accessed at home or at school.

Word Online can be used to create  document from the beginning (or you can upload an existing Word document from your computer to make it available to edit online thereafter). You can keep it private to you in your own OneDrive (the online cloud storage with massive capacity available to every Glow user in Scottish schools). Or you can, at any time, choose to make a Word Online document visible to other users of your choice – and you can choose whether to allow them to just be able to read it without being able to make changes, or you can give other users the access rights to be able to jointly edit the document with you.

Have a look at the Sway presentation here for a step-by-step guide for learners to create a Word document in Word Online in their OneDrive in Microsoft office 365 via Glow and to share this with other Glow users to be able to jointly edit the same document.

Microsoft Learning Tools with Immersive Reader⤴

from @ ICT for Learning & Teaching in Falkirk Schools

Learning Tools with Immersive Reader provide users of Microsoft Office 365 (including Word and OneNote) with a range of tools to support learners with varying needs, making reading and writing more accessible for any learner. This is available to all Glow users in Scottish schools.

Have a look at the Sway presentation here to see more about Immersive Reader and Learning Tools

 

Notes and Airdrop to the rescue⤴

from @ wwwd – John's World Wide Wall Display

My class have been writing short descriptive passages about soldiers in the WW1 trenches.

At the weekend I planned for them to record these over a background of sound effects. I had spent some time at freesound.org and downloaded 20 or so effects and sounds. I had converted these to MP3 files, to reduce file size and placed these in a folder in OneDrive which I then shared. I have also made a list of credits for the files, all are Creative Commons.

The plan was to get the class to listen to the files in OneDrive then ‘open’ the ones they wanted to use in bossjock jr. These could then be loaded into ‘carts’ alongside the voice recordings. The pupils then played the different sounds and record that for their final mix.

To make sure everything went smoothly I got the whole class to open OneDrive and make sure they were logged in. That first step worked fine. The problem was OneDrive reported that there was not an internet connection and showed no files or folders. Since the class had logged into Glow this was obviously wrong.

I ended using most of the morning interval and lunchtime trying to see where the problem was. Strangely when I opened the iOS Files app when also allows you to see OneDrive files, I started slowly seeing files on the pupils iPads. And when I switched back to OneDrive the appeared there. To give the pupils access to the shared folder I needed to send a url. This opens OneDrive, and that told me I needed to open the browser, doing this, and signing on to Glow again (in the browser this time) eventually gave pupils iPads a view of the shared folder. Unfortunately I couldn’t get these to open and then open in bossjock in a timely fashion. It just was taking too long.

Time for a rethink.

On my iPad I had earlier made the files available off line in OneDrive. This took a while. I did manage to see the files in the Files app, from there I copied the MP3 files to the Notes app. 2 notes with about 10 files each. I quickly tested sharing these notes via Airdrop, it was pretty quick.

I suspected that airdropping notes with 10 audio attachments might be a bit slow, especially without Apple Classroom. I was wrong. In the afternoon I just dropped the notes to the pupils in groups of 4 or 5 at a time and in 10 minutes had distributed 20 audio files to all of the class. From there they could listen to the files in notes and copy the ones they liked to bossjock.

The rest of the afternoon when well, the children recorded their voices and mixed in the sound effects. For a first try the results were good. Next time I think we will record the audio live over the backgrounds that would allow us to duck the effects and make sure all of the words were clear. I think once the logistics of moving audio onto the iPads was sorted it becomes an interesting and valuable lesson. Fortunately the class missed all of the boring bits and no one asked why we had opened OneDrive earlier in the day.

lessons learned (again)

  • My home WiFi is faster than school.
  • Moving files locally is quicker than the cloud.
  • We can have a lot of fun with bossjock.
  • Notes and Airdrop are marvellous.

featured image, screenshot of sending audio from Notes to bossjock jr.

New and improved Glow Connect website⤴

from @ Education Scotland's Learning Blog

We are proud to share with you today the new and improved official Glow website Glow Connect

The site provides Glow customers with information on the educational benefits of Glow, easy access to the main Glow login screen, and help and guidance on the various services Glow offers. We hope you enjoy using the site and find it valuable for keeping up to date on all things Glow

Google Education Roadshow @kingussiehigh #NDLW17 #digitaldifference⤴

from @ OllieBray.com

Kingussie Event - OB Keynote

Well it is the end of National Digital Learning Week in Scotland (#NDLW17).

I started the week by hosting and keynoting the Scottish leg of the Google in Education UK Roadshow at Kingussie High School and finished the week by having my latest resource 'Leading a Digital Learning Strategy' published by the Scottish College for Educational Leadership (SCEL) as part of their Framework for Education Leadership. More about that here.

The Google Event had a real buzz about it on Monday and it was great to have an opportunity to work with the wider roadshow team, who are currently touring the UK as part of the Google in Education Fuel the Future Tour. A special shout out must go to Louise Jones, Oli Trussell, James Leonard and Dean Stokes for their excellent presentations - I certainly learnt a lot and realised that there are lots more features within G-Suite for Education that we could be exploiting at school.

It was also great to have 20 local authorities represented at the event and a good blend between practitioners, local authority advisors and policy makers. I am interested to see what G-Suite looks like within Glow when it becomes available as part of the productivity suite in August this year.

Kingussie Google Event - May 2017

The theme of this years National Digital Learning Week was making a #digitaldifference and for a little school in the middle of the Cairngorm National Park I think we certainly punch well above our weight in terms of making a #digitaldifference. The map below is a nice illustration of just some of our influence in the last week.18527383_10158619884970702_49681753105711023_o

 

Google Education Roadshow @kingussiehigh #NDLW17 #digitaldifference⤴

from @ OllieBray.com

Kingussie Event - OB Keynote

Well it is the end of National Digital Learning Week in Scotland (#NDLW17).

I started the week by hosting and keynoting the Scottish leg of the Google in Education UK Roadshow at Kingussie High School and finished the week by having my latest resource 'Leading a Digital Learning Strategy' published by the Scottish College for Educational Leadership (SCEL) as part of their Framework for Education Leadership. More about that here.

The Google Event had a real buzz about it on Monday and it was great to have an opportunity to work with the wider roadshow team, who are currently touring the UK as part of the Google in Education Fuel the Future Tour. A special shout out must go to Louise Jones, Oli Trussell, James Leonard and Dean Stokes for their excellent presentations - I certainly learnt a lot and realised that there are lots more features within G-Suite for Education that we could be exploiting at school.

It was also great to have 20 local authorities represented at the event and a good blend between practitioners, local authority advisors and policy makers. I am interested to see what G-Suite looks like within Glow when it becomes available as part of the productivity suite in August this year.

Kingussie Google Event - May 2017

The theme of this years National Digital Learning Week was making a #digitaldifference and for a little school in the middle of the Cairngorm National Park I think we certainly punch well above our weight in terms of making a #digitaldifference. The map below is a nice illustration of just some of our influence in the last week.18527383_10158619884970702_49681753105711023_o

 

Office Lens….through a lens!⤴

from @ The H-Blog

It’s been a while since I blogged (a freshly minted child and 2 house moves will do that kind of thing to you….) but I saw something this week that made me think “People need to know about that. I should stick it on my blog.” Given how inactive I’ve been on here for so long, there may be a fundamental flaw in my logic there, but we’re going to let that slide for the moment….

 

Office Lens – did I mention it was free?

 

The thing that I saw was down to Ian Stuart. I had been asking some questions about OneNote and Class Notebook, and obviously Ian is the Go-To-Guy for such queries. He came out to visit me at school (many thanks Ian!) and ran through a few things with me. One of them was the amazing set of ‘Learning Tools’ available as a plugin for OneNote, and given our iOS situation he showed me the free Office Lens app too, but gave the caveat that it was only available in an iPhone version – although this could be used on the iPad like many iPhone apps.

After I got home, I went to download Office Lens to my iPad and found out that the info Ian had given me was inaccurate. There was an iPad version of Office Lens available! Turns out that it had literally just been released that day. I must have been one of the very first people to download it
(and did I mention it was free?).

So what does it do?

Well, put simply, if you have a piece of text, you point Office Lens at it, take a photo of it and it will then read it to you and also covert it into an editable document. See the pics below for an idea of how it works.

 

First, frame your document in the camera, and capture an image using the onscreen red button.

A thumbnail will be displayed of the image you just captured. You can now take more pictures, if you have more pages to scan.

Choose where you want the image to be sent.

Let’s start with the Immersive Reader.

The conversion is reasonably quick, on a decent signal at least.

Immersive Reader provides a clean and pretty clutter free interface.

Press the play button, and the text will be read out to you. The speed of the reading can be varied to suit your individual needs.

          

The current word being spoken is highlighted as it is read, and you can make the speech faster or slower to suit.

Did I mention it was free? And we’re not finished yet…..

If you have a compatible OneDrive account – like I don’t know, a school account or through Glow – then you can upload the scanned document to Word through OneDrive….

…where it just happens to become fully editable text. As with any OCR technology, it’s not perfect – but it is pretty good.

As an easy to use app which is simple and user friendly, it’s mightily impressive. And did I mention it was free? Get it for iOS at http://tiny.cc/OfficeLens

It’s also available as an Android or Windows (naturally) app, but I haven’t seen them up and running. Definitely worth a look though.

So, that’s Lens. What about ‘through a lens’?

Well, an interesting thing happened when I was showing a colleague how Lens worked. This technology, which would have been jaw-dropping a couple of years ago say, is free to download and easy to use – and I’m listening to myself say “Yeah – it’s a shame you can’t change the colour of the background it’s reading from, or how the highlighting works. And I wish you could add a Scottish accent….”

And then I stopped and listened to myself. I smiled, and thought about what the app is capable of and what our reaction was to seeing. And it’s a telling glimpse of where we are. We are insatiable. It doesn’t matter how good a piece of software, or hardware or work is, we always want it to do more, be more, achieve more. Which is good, in a way, and where progress and improvement comes from. But sometimes you just need to stop for a minute and say good job, well done.

So Microsoft; good job, well done.