Friday, 23 December 2016

Moldiv


Image result for moldiv

One of our favourite apps for making posters, title screens and photo collages is Moldiv. Simple and quick, with lots of free design options, this a must-have for any Star Classroom teacher. There are lots of photo collage-style apps out there, but Moldiv is one that we keep returning to time and time again. Our favourite use of Moldiv is using it to make video clip titles - perfect for DRET.TV clips and flipped learning videos.

Check out the Moldiv explainer video here (DRET log in required) or see all of our training videos on DRET.TV


Don't have a DRET log in? We have made some resources available to all here

Thursday, 22 December 2016

Happy Christmas!

It has been an incredibly busy and rewarding term!
17 Star Classroom 'Basecamp' training days completed to date so far, with more to come in January. The classrooms that have already had their installations are looking great, and we have already witnessed first hand some amazing things happening in lessons with technology being put to use thoughtfully and creatively by the talented teachers who have passed through Basecamp.

It has been fantastic to meet lots of new people, and reconnect with those we already knew. Already we have received positive comments from pupils of our academies as to how intelligent use of technology is making their learning a more positive and enriching experience. We look forward to gathering more detailed feedback from pupils across the age ranges in the new year, and adding to the Star Classroom experience along the way.

Already plans are afoot in academies to start building on the Star Classroom model, and we are excited by the direction things are heading in 2017.

Seasons greetings to one and all!



Wednesday, 21 December 2016

iPad mirroring for instant and ongoing feedback

Being able to mirror the iPad to the big screen is a very effective way to demonstrate student work, and provide ongoing and instant feedback during the lesson. The ability to ‘freeze’ the screen then annotate over the top is a game changer for many.

Annotating student work for instant feedback

In this example, the teacher took a photo of a student's work using the iPad, edited out the unwanted part of the page, and mirrored the photo to the big screen, all in a matter of seconds.
From there, she could: write over the top (the red annotations), make changes, ask the class for alternatives, highlight, correct, brainstorm etc, providing the class with useful ongoing feedback for their own work - ultimately leading into the next steps for the lesson.
Simple and quick, but highly effective.
(Credit: C. King, Charles Read Academy)
To find out how to mirror an iPad to another screen, click here (DRET login required). To see this and all of our training videos, click here
To keep up to date with more like this, follow us on Twitter @star_classroom


Monday, 19 December 2016

Windows 10 Tips and Tricks

Whether you are checking your emails, filling out your register on SIMS, or displaying a PowerPoint - you are no doubt spending most of the day using Windows. For those of you taking part in Star Classroom, you are now using the latest version of Windows - Windows 10!

So, we have put together a guide that outlines a few favourite Windows 10 tips and tricks to help you better use the software and take advantage of the new features that it has to offer.

Click image to open the guide
If you have any Windows 10 favourites that you think should be added to this guide, please let us know by adding a comment to this post.

Saturday, 10 December 2016

DRET.tv Quietly Taking Off

STOP PRESS: We've had several new requests from outside the Trust to view the video channels - sadly we can't do that but we have now made a mini-site that is public called "featured.dret.tv" to showcase the best stuff - we'll put anything on this blog there from now on.

DRET.tv is almost a year old, but it was quite a quiet and unused corner of our dret.cloud system for a long time. We used it to post copies of videos from the website and our YouTube channel, and for some training videos. Suddenly though, in large part because of the work of a number of very creative teachers it has started to take off - already we're aware of a teacher in one academy using a video from a colleague he's never met at another in a lesson - and some of them are getting a lot more viewers than there are people in the class (a "view" on the system is a person, so if the same person sees the video 20 times, it only counts once!)

The system works well because
  • There are no ads or toxic comments to worry about which you'd always have to be wary of with YouTube for example (although see our article on safeshare.tv if you need to use YouTube)
  • All the content is uploaded by staff at our academies so the ratio to useful stuff to filler is extremely high - just searching now I see thirteen videos with the term "subtraction" available - there could be a few more on the public web perhaps, but we know the provenance of these.
  • It is so simple to upload video. From an iPad or iPhone there is a great little app. From Office Mix it is a single click ("Publish to Office 365 Video"
For anyone that uses Office 365 we can't recommend the video service highly enough. Microsoft have another product called Stream available but we really like the idea of having simple "channels' each of which can have an owner (a few staff) and an audience (a few classes, or the whole Trust).

Making new channels is easy, and uploading videos straightforward. To simplify the process of asking for a channel to be made we've created a request form on Yammer.

Thursday, 1 December 2016

Record your Screen with ActivePresenter

Have you ever wanted to capture part of your lesson quickly and easily? For example, you have just explained a new topic to the class and would like to make it available for them to see again or maybe you want to demonstrate how to do something on the computer. ActivePresenter is a free tool that will record your PC screen and your voice at the same time and produce a high-quality video for you to share.

ActivePresenter records what is happening on the screen so it doesn’t matter what software you are using – you could quite simply have a Word document open and be explaining the task for the lesson.

Here are a few examples of when you may want to use it (if you think of other examples please share in the comments section below):
  • Creating a video for your class if you know you are going to be away – you can open up all of the relevant materials you’ve left with the supply teacher and explain what they need to do
  • If you use any of the following interactive whiteboard tools; Active Inspire, Smart Notebook or OneNote to explain and draw new concepts – why not record it whilst you are in class doing it anyway. You can then share the video with the class and they can watch it at a time or place convenient to them, to help them revise or do their homework
  • ActivePresenter records videos too – you could even record the class analysing a YouTube clip. Play the clip and pause it at the right moments to talk about it
  • Maybe you want to show colleagues or parents how to do something on the computer – for example a video showing how to copy and paste pictures from the web, so that parents can help their children with homework
  • You could record yourself doing a walk-through of an assessment paper – the class can then practise and revise at a time suitable to them

These are just a few examples, and I’m sure everyone will have their own ideas for when recording a lesson would be useful. Why not give it go!

Here is a how-to video and step-by-step guide to ActivePresenter:


ActivePresenter Step-by-step

Link to download ActivePresenter:
ActivePresenter Download