Tag Archives: Microsoft

Microsoft Maker Space at #BETT2017 [@BETT_Show @microsofteduk]⤴

from @ OllieBray.com

20170127_112504

I was really impressed with the Microsoft Maker Space at BETT 2017.

It was packed full of practical and fun activities for both kids and adults to try out.

I think my favourite was the robotic hand (see the video below). But there was also some really nice stuff for geography teachers on Using Computational Thinking to Understand Earthquakes and Analysing Wind Speed with Anemometers.

All of the resources are free and a new lesson plan is being released each month.

You can view the current list of resources at aka.ms/hackingstem.

 

Microsoft Maker Space at #BETT2017 [@BETT_Show @microsofteduk]⤴

from @ OllieBray.com

20170127_112504

I was really impressed with the Microsoft Maker Space at BETT 2017.

It was packed full of practical and fun activities for both kids and adults to try out.

I think my favourite was the robotic hand (see the video below). But there was also some really nice stuff for geography teachers on Using Computational Thinking to Understand Earthquakes and Analysing Wind Speed with Anemometers.

All of the resources are free and a new lesson plan is being released each month.

You can view the current list of resources at aka.ms/hackingstem.

 

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.

Personalised Learning for Teachers about Digital Technologies for Learning⤴

from @ ICT for Teaching & Learning in Falkirk Primary Schools

MicrosoftTeacherTrainingBadgesMicrosoft in Education is a site which provides free on-demand personalised learning for teachers in exploring the use of digital technologies to support learning and teaching – learning at a pace which suits each teacher on the topics they find most useful to them, at the time they need it.

The online hub provides a Training and Professional Development section which is divided into Quick Tip Videos,  Courses (which can be filtered by age range of learners, tools, skills to be developed, etc), and Learning Paths which provide a more in-depth look at use of digital technologies compbing different methods of delivering the information and sharing of skills as well as exemplars.

There is a wide range of free instant-access online courses. Some of these are short tool-specific how-to guides to learning the basics of getting started using specific digital technologies such as Sway, Skype, OneNote, Powerpoint, Minecraft, Office Mix or many other tools. Some are just short quick-tip videos highlighting a specific feature of a particular piece of software.

Some courses are longer and look at how digital technologies can best be used to support learning and teaching in different contexts. These combine text guides, video explanations and examples, as well as quizzes to help understanding.

MicrosoftEducatorCommunityAnd by signing up to the free Microsoft in Education Community a teacher can access a wider range of resources shared by other teachers around the globe, and when working through the range of courses on offer a teacher can gain visual recognition through digital badges of their accomplishments. Working through the online resources, with badges to record progress, can provide an extra degree of motivation when there is a tangible record of what skills have been acquired, and perhaps a spur to just complete another one (and another, and another!!).

So whether starting out, or just looking for an illustration of a particular application in a classroom setting, reading about how others are using digital technologies to support learning, an online space to discuss with colleagues worldwide what’s worked (or look for advice when you might be looking for a solution to something which has not worked in your situation), or wanting to further explore how to integrate digital technology to best support learners in your school, there is something here for every teacher.

Sign up for free now at the Microsoft Educator Community at the link below:

https://education.microsoft.com/

 

Sway for engaging online presentations⤴

from @ ICT for Teaching & Learning in Falkirk Primary Schools

Sway_logoMicrosoft Sway is a presentation tool which is free and works on any device. It can start with a simple word-processed document (or from other sources such as Powerpoint or PDF) where you’ve put your ideas and, with just a few clicks, you can upload the document, highlight text you wish to emphasise, which parts to make into new sections, where to add images, embedded video links and images, and add emphasis in an engaging way.

Click on this link for a quick guide and introductory tutorial showing how you can make an engaging presentation using Sway

The following video takes the brief introduction above and develops that so that you can create a presentation in Sway using the new layout set up specifically for presentations. This video shows how to use groups, grids, captions, and focus points to ensure your chosen message comes across in they way you wish with the emphasis on the content you deem to be most important.

Want to make a tutorial presentation using Sway? The video below shows how you can structure a Sway presentation to use embedded videos, images and text to explain the steps in any process for explaining to others.

How to use Sway for a school project. The following video shows how Sway can be used to create a project on any topic in an educational context.

Click here for links to video guides to using Sway from Microsoft.

Click here for a guide to using Sway specifically in Glow Office 365 – this also links to a variety of examples of the use of Sway in a school context

 

To share your Sway

To share your Sway presentation with others you simply copy the weblink URL which Sway provides for you, and share that, whether via social media or email (there are specific buttons at the share part of Sway which provides you with the appropriate link for each method of sharing. This can also be used to embed in a Glow WordPress blog – just add the short link in the body of a blogpost and it will automatically embed. Note that if you are using your Glow user account to share your Sway link the Sway presentation must have ben made public for others to see it, it cannot be embedded elsewhere online (such as a blog) unless the Sway presentation is public and can be seen by anyone on the Sway settings.

Below is an example Sway “Sway for Education: Sway in the Classroom” which provides examples of how Sway can be used, and also shows in itself what a Sway presentation can look like.

Examples of Sway in Education

Sway – The star of your 2015 Classroom – a post on the Microsoft Australian Teachers Blog. This provides a host of ideas for how Sway can be used in a classroom context, as well as examples of created Sways.

Delve and other Office 365 for Education Developments⤴

from @ Mimanifesto - Jaye's weblog

It’s no secret that I am a pretty big fan of Office 365 as a managed learning platform for education. After preferring Google Apps for a long time ( here’s my take on this), the change came about primarily because I’ve watched how responsive they’ve been over the past few years to concerns users have raised […]

Turbo charging PowerPoint…⤴

from @ Mimanifesto - Jaye's weblog

 I appear to be writing much more regularly about Microsoft this year, but they do keep coming out with great things to blog about.  They really do appear to be taking the education market very seriously at the moment. Hot on the heels of Office365 for Education free pricing plans, OneNote apps across platforms, and […]

Will Google Apps for Education catch up?⤴

from @ Mimanifesto - Jaye's weblog

Earlier this year, I wrote a blog post about Microsoft’s Office 365 for Education platform, and compared it to Google Apps. The main comparison point I made was that whilst Office 365 was a complete managed learning platform ecosystem, where all the parts worked together in a very transactional way (even more so now that […]

Apps For All⤴

from @ Mimanifesto - Jaye's weblog

Whatever your platform there’s a list of great apps f or you. The helpful folks at Tablet Academy UK and Tablet Academy Scotland have compiled three lists of favourite apps for education. They are a completely independent consultancy and provide good advice which is completely platform agnostic, and utilises good local knowledge (unlike some businesses […]

iTunesU – Half a Million Ways to Consume and Create⤴

from @ Mimanifesto - Jaye's weblog

Apple and Microsoft both have really mature education ecosystems, with the Apple Professional Development/Distinguished Educator and Microsoft Partners in Learning/ Innovative Educator programmes.  iTunesU is billed as the world’s largest repository of free education content (at last count there were over half a million different courses in there) – and it has to be one […]