Diigo <- check it out!
Ahhh sweet sweet Diigo. Diigo is a Chrome extension that's a popular annotation tool. I've been using Diigo on and off for a couple of years. Frankly... I don't like it. I'm told I should like it. Some of my smart Yale friends tell me that I should like it. In all fairness, I have tried it for 2 years now.... I kind of equate Diigo to using roller skates.
I own a lot of forms of transportation... I have both rollerskates and rollerblades. While they are both very similar, they both have 4 wheels, they both fit my feet nicely and snug up past my ankles... They fundamentally differ. For diigo- while I can work collaborative by sharing bookmarks, I can just as easily make a shareable Google Doc. For making annotations, I habitually use my Surface tablet with it's awesome pen. I know it has some additional features, I just never found a use for them.
Check out the Animoto I made of my 2015 summer adventure!
What an amazing tool!
Now, I'm fortunate in that I was to receive a free educators account! Thanks Animoto for believing in me! Sadly, if you were to make one as a student/reader the free account slaps a watermark right over your work.
The process for making this video are VERY straight forward, just drag photos, add captions, and pick a song!
The only bummer besides the watermark on free accounts, is that while I love the visual effects, some of the photos totally get washed out by the applied filters. I mean who doesn't love a little Sepia filter, but I don't think many people love their photos of an alpine lake being washed in a blood red filter.
Check out Pixlr
So lets start with my new Google profile picture for school! Jockey Hollow for life!
Pixlr is an amazing photo editing software. It's essentially set-up like Photoshop just without the more powerful features. It's completely free and if you know how Photoshop works, very straight forward)
My only issues with it, is that I use a large amount of keyboard shortcuts- and they don't work on this web-based software. I also had a difficult time adjusting to the subtle differences in layout.
I love Photoshop, and our computers in the lab all have them- however when I'm running around town, or using another computer- I cant afford the program. So Pixlr is a GREAT alternative!
Mr. Hughes is a great friend of mine who teaches computer science at North Haven High- He's been a close friend since we were in elementary school.
While we teach different courses to different age groups- We share these computer lab rules. In fact, these rules are almost standard rules no matter what computer lab you enter from elementary school to college.
The video was made on Windows Movie Maker (which we have installed on all of our computers! OR you could download the program- free for windows computers) The audio was recorded on Audacity (http://www.audacityteam.org/). Though, you could simply use Movie Maker itself. I also used Photoshop (which we also have on our computers) to manipulate some of the photos (pssst I don't have a pack of wild dogs in the computer lab)
If you want to take a behind the scenes tour of the video check out our google folder here
The video was really fun to shoot once we had a plan! I always start my ideas with paper and pencil because I'm an old man... Then we used a google doc to write our script and organize photos/videos so we could collaborate.
A few hours of work and we finished it up!
*Advice* for all of you readers out there- Always do the visual media first (Photos+video) THEN do audio. I got this tip from doing a Powtoon presentation (which I highly recommend to anyone out there) and it's helped my story telling exponentially.
*Tip #2* When you have to write an essay for school- ask if you can make a video instead - Do some research online- There are a lot of convincing arguments and it's much more fun :D
Mr. Demchak's blog
Welcome to my Blog. You will see information that pertains to the educational world in which I happily live.
I am a teacher for the next 30 years (unless beanie babies get valuable again...) but forever a student and my blog reflects this.
Hello! My name is Michael Demchak and I'm a Technology Education teacher! And if you couldn't tell by the exclamation point... I love it.