Create a Slideshow using YouTube

Many teachers use Picasa Web Albums to create slideshows for their blogs. However, Edublogs has recently had a problem where the embed code only works if the teacher only stays in Text mode and doesn’t switch between Text and Visual mode.

Creating a gallery of photos is always an option, but if you’d prefer a slideshow mode, use YouTube.

How to Create a Slideshow in YouTube

  1. Go to Upload in YouTube.
  2. Click on Create beside Photo SlideshowScreen Shot 2015-09-19 at 18.19.03
  3. You have an option to use photos in your Google + Profile. Otherwise, you can upload photos from your computer.
  4. After selecting or uploading the photos, and confirming the order, click on Next.
  5. You can customize the Slide Duration, Effect and Transition, as well as select an audio track to play with your slide (no audio is an option).Screen Shot 2015-09-19 at 18.30.29
  6. Click Upload.
  7. Make sure your “video” is unlisted.Screen Shot 2015-09-19 at 18.32.48
  8. Check the advanced settings. I suggest turning Comments off, and enabling embedding (so that you can put the slideshow on your blog).Screen Shot 2015-09-19 at 18.33.29
  9. Click Done.
  10. Once your video is uploaded, copy the address, and paste it in your post/page. (Make sure that the link is on a line by itself and that you are working in Visual Mode.)

IT Integration Walls

An IT Integration wall is a great way to support student use of technology for learning in the classroom. There are many different approaches that you can take. One approach is to create a poster of Just Right resources for your grade/students. Here’s an example from a grade 2 classroom.

Example of an IT Integration Wall

Example of an IT Integration Wall

The teachers included instructions of how to use Dropbox, as well as QR codes to resources appropriate for this unit. This space can be aa big, or as small as you want it to be, and you can involve student “experts” in creating it, especially at older grades. I’m also creating tutorials for some classes/grades, and those types of resources can be incorporated into the space.

If you’re looking for resources to create QR codes, here are some resources.

Managing Subscriptions in Edublogs

You can subscribe people to your site on Edublogs one by one, or using a csv file. Your csv file should have a column of e-mail addresses, one per cell. To create a csv file, use Excel and save as Comma Separated Values (csv). If you would like to subscribe a person without sending them a confirmation e-mail, turn on Auto opt-in.

Add subscribers to your blog

Add subscribers to your blog. Auto opt-in is off in this example

To see who is subscribed to your blog, go to the subscribers tab.

To set up how notifications are managed, go to Settings.

Subscriptions | Settings | Mail Template

mail settings 1

Select if you want the notification e-mail to include the full post content. If the box is not checked, an excerpt will be mailed instead.

You may also customize the text of the subscription confirmation email on this page if you’d like. Remember to Save changes before exiting the page.

Subscriptions | Settings | General Settings

You have several options that you can set on this page. I will emphasize three of them

reply to address

Set a no reply address to prevent your address from being marked as a spammer.

send how often

Decide when notifications should be sent by the blog

If you select weekly digest, you may select the day of the week but not the time. Also, you have to make sure to visit your site the day before your selected day. This option seems unreliable to me.

get notifications

Decide if you’d like to be notified when people subscribe/unsubscribe

Finally, deleting a subscriber is easy. If you have a class blog, you may want to unsubscribe parents of former students before subscribing the parents of your current students. To do so, go to the Subscribers tab, select the people you’d like to unsubscribe, and perform the bulk action called Cancel subscriptions.

Cloud Storage Using Google Drive

Screen Shot 2015-09-04 at 08.02.58

ISP assigns Google Apps accounts to children from Grade 3. This automatically provides each child with a storage space in Google Drive. We could use Google classroom, but we’ve continued our legacy processes. Here’s how we set up storage:

  • Each student creates a class folder with subfolders for each subject
  • The class folder is shared with the classroom teacher with edit privileges
  • Folders for single subject/specialist teachers are shared with them with edit privileges
  • Each teacher creates a Class Students 2015-2016 folder and adds each student’s folder to it
  • The teacher creates a folder to share work with students (read only by students)
  • The teacher creates a folder where students can share items with each other or with the teacher

Naming conventions are very important when using Google Drive. They enable users to search and find files more efficiently. We use the naming convention of Class Firstname Description e.g. 4P Damianne Math. When there are 2 or more students with the same first name, we append the first initial of the last name e.g. 4P DamianneP Math. Get in the habit yourself and get students in the habit of naming files and folders accurately when they create them, and putting them in the correct folder from the start.

If you do this in Google Classroom, and find the process to be more streamlined with a similar setup, please let me a comment.

Cloud Storage using Shared Devices

Storage organized by unit

There are many different tools that you can use for digital storage on shared devices. I’ve been reading about Seesaw, a digital portfolio tool, various blogging platforms among other options, Box, etc. At ISP, we subscribe to a paid Dropbox account that is shared between Kindergarten and Grade 1 classes using shared iPads. A free account only gets you 2GB free, but you can gain more space through referrals and other invitations on the Dropbox website.

There are different options of how to set up your Dropbox. First, you have to decide if you’d like students to have individual folders for their work, or if you’d like students to store work by subject.

Whichever option you choose, students will invariable save something in the wrong place at some point. They may also move folders accidentally. For that reason, I suggest following a naming convention for example:

  • Every file or folder name begins with the class e.g. 4R or Room206 (even though my images do not show this).

This way, if something gets moved accidentally, it can be identified by anyone who finds it.

It doesn’t matter what tool you use for students to save their work, but it may save you some stress if you think about how you want to set up any shared spaces, and how students should name files for ease of identification, as well as searching.