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A handy tool for turning PowerPoint presentations into interactive lessons.

Written by Gianfranco D'Aversa.

officemixbanner

Office Mix is an excellent PowerPoint add-in that allows teachers to create engaging and interactive presentations using multimedia materials including images, links, videos, audio and text. Office Mix offers a number of features that would turn your PowerPoint presentation into a live interactive online lesson. Some of these features include: screen recording, directly writing in the presentation as you would at a whiteboard, creating interactive quizzes and polls and many more.

As a teacher, you can use Office Mix to record yourself explaining a lesson to students using both audio and video. You can also use its screen recording functionality to create instructional videos and tutorials integrating your own voice-over. Office Mix is also a great tool for flipped classrooms. Check out this page to learn more about how teachers are using Office Mix in their classes.

Watch this video to learn more about Office Mix

Integration of ICT in learning-teaching

Written by Gianfranco D'Aversa.

edu tic class

The use of information and communication technology (ICT) such as Internet applications, video technology and various computer attachments and software programs have caused many changes in society. These changes have not just been of a technical nature but more importantly of a structural nature. Many of the major institutions of our society have changed and the way we live our daily lives have been impacted. However, the impact on education may just beginning to be felt as teachers integrate this new technology into their teaching. In the early stages of the use of ICT in teaching, looking at the experiences of teachers at a high school in the forefront provides some clues as to what possibilities and problems may be presented with this new technology. The purpose of this study is to answer the following research questions: "How does the use of ICT change the work of teachers?"

Download the document here

A Competition that makes a difference

Written by Gianfranco D'Aversa.

uae rag pic

UAE AI & Robotics Award for Good intends to support innovation in the key area of artificial intelligence and robotics as part of the UAE’s commitment towards the National Innovation Strategy launched by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. It offers a first of its kind global platform for innovation, focusing on the practical side of this technology in areas of much relevance to the society such as health, education and social services.

"Humanity is on a journey. From the discovery of fire to the industrial revolution, we are on a constant voyage of discovery. Robotics and artificial intelligence are the next step." (His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum)

Video > Robotics for Good

Create professional looking educational screencast and tutorials for your class

Written by Gianfranco D'Aversa.

screenflow ss

Screenflow is a powerful and easy to use screen recording and editing software for Mac users. The app comes in with a set of advanced features allowing you to make high quality video screencasts. Screenflow allows you to record the contents of your entire monitor while also capturing your video camera, iOS device, microphone and your computer audio.

As a teacher, you can use Screenflow to to flip your classroom and create instructional video tutorials. You can also use it to create dynamic and rich media presentations to share with students. its intuitive interface and the simple yet powerful editing tools makes it an ideal application for teachers keen on designing professionally-looking screencasts and tutorials. You can easily edit your video, add additional images and text, insert music and apply some transitions before you publish your screencasts to the web or directly to popular social media sites such as YouTube, Vimeo, Facebook and or save them in Google Drive or Dropbox.

Screenflow is a bit pricy. It costs $99 but is definitely worth its money.

Citelighter: an indispensable tool for academics and student researchers

Written by Gianfranco D'Aversa.

citelighter

Citelighter is a very good web tool for student researchers, teachers and academics. It combines both the features of an academic search engine and an organizational framework for helping students with their research papers writing. Citeligther allows you to easily search for facts and information to back your arguments and it automatically cites your sources using different citation styles: MLA, APA, and Chicago).

To start using Citelighter, you will need to sign up. Once registered you can then download Citelighter toolbar to help you manage and organize your materials. Using the different functionalities of your toolbar, you will be able to start on writing your own paper. You can search for and capture important information to add to your paper, Citelighter takes care of the bibliograhic work for you. Watch this video to learn more about how Citelighter works and what you can do with it. Cite lighter offers both a free basic account with limited features and a premium account with more advanced features 

Halftone 2: a great App for creating comic books with students

Written by Gianfranco D'Aversa.

halftone

Halftone 2 is a very good comic book creator app that you can use with students to create comic and scrap books using photos and sound effects.

The process of creating a comic book using Halftone 2 is simple and easy: Choose a page layout from the selection provided there, then import your photos from your photo library, Facebook or Flickr. Customize the look of your images using Aviary’s photo editing tools that include things such as automatic enhancements, filter effects, brightness, contrast, saturation, sharpness, redeye, whiten, blemish, and selective focus. You can also add captions and speech bubbles to your photos or choose from over 80 professionally-designed graphical shapes. Next, mix in some sound effects then share your creation as an image, multi-page document, or high-definition video.

Other features provided by Halftone 2 include:

  • Over 30 unique caption and balloon styles (speech bubbles, thought balloons, banners, scrolls, and more)
  • A powerful 3D perspective feature lets you tilt your captions and balloons
  • A custom stamp feature allows you to add your own images (with support for alpha channels)
  • Choose from over 30 multi-photo page layouts 50 licensed sound effects are included that can be assigned to each photo panel
  • An optional soundtrack can be added by choosing a song from your music library
  • A document library lets you create, save, copy, and work with multiple projects
  • Output formats include image (JPG), PDF, CBZ, and video (MP4)

Watch this video to learn more about to use Halftone 2.

Insights. A new educational tool for creating paperless interactive lessons

Written by Gianfranco D'Aversa.

tinitap

The popular educational app TinyTap has recently released a new tool called Insights. This is basically a data management tool to help teachers access real-time analytics on data related to classroom teaching such as which lessons students completed, how they scored on them and how they are improving.

Insights is designed to help you engage your students, improve grades, and save valuable time. You can use Insights for a variety of purposes including:

  • Formative Assessments: create tests, quizzes, and lesson reviews
  • Digital Homework: assign a lesson, track who played, see how they did
  • Project-Based Learning: let students build their own portfolios of interactive presentations

Some of the features provided by Insights include:

  • Build interactive lessons to engage your students
  • Assign lessons, quizzes and homework
  • Draw upon thousands of other free lessons created daily by educators worldwide
  • See how students perform and identify where they need help
  • Update students’ families with the click of a button

Here are some interesting video tutorials to help you make the best of Insights.

A great App to explore the human body in 4D

Written by Gianfranco D'Aversa.

anatomy4d

Anatomy 4D is an excellent iPad app for science teachers and students. It provides an interactive 4D experience of the human anatomy using augmented reality technology.

Anatomy 4D offers an easy to use 3-dimensional learning environment ideal for classroom use. Students can utilize the app to virtually explore the human body and learn more about the functionality of each organ. The visual and interactive features of the app make the task of learning about human anatomy super engaging.

Here is how to get started using Anatomy 4D.

First, open the app and head over to ‘target library’ and email, print or save any set of images you are interested in. After that, you simply point your device at the target from the “Viewer” and watch the 4D Experience come to life.

Here some of the features provided by Anatomy 4D:

  • Learn about and explore the human body and heart in intricate detail
  • Highlight various organ systems individually, so for instance, you can focus on just the skeletal, muscular, or respiratory system
  • Change the view back and forth between a male and female body
  • Zoom in to experience each organ or body part in-depth
  • Use new image targets including the new heart target (this new app release still supports the original image target)

Get inspired about human anatomy!

ICDL offers tons of free eBooks for kids

Written by Gianfranco D'Aversa.

interchild

International Children’s Digital Library (ICDL) is an iPad app that offers a plethora of free books specifically selected for kids and young learners. The app is a fruit of the partnership between the University of Maryland's Human-Computer Interaction Lab and the International Children's Digital Library Foundation.

ICDL features a large collection of children’s books from over 60 countries and in different languages. The books are provided in highly readable format with beautiful illustrations and graphics. The purpose behind this project is to “to excite and inspire young readers to become better world citizens by leveraging technology to reach underserved children who have little access to libraries. The ICDL is offered free of charge to everyone, everywhere with no advertising.”

Some of the features ICDL offers to its users include:

  • The full ICDL collection (thousands of books)
  • Completely free
  • Books in dozens of languages
  • iPad support for rotation (automatically shows two pages at a time in landscape view)
  • All books have summaries in English and the native language of the book
  • Special support for readability - by zooming text (for many books)
  • Many books translated into other languages 

Gianfranco D'Aversa

Rome // Foggia // Abu Dhabi

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