Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Help Set The Record For The World's Largest Digital Read On October 21st!

In just a few days on October 21, JumpStart will be hosting one of our favorite days of the year. 

It is called Read for the Record.  This special day is sponsored by JumpStart and We Give Books
When you and your kids read Bunny Cakes by Rosemary Wells online in We Give Books free digital library, you will help set a second world record for the largest reading of a digital book in the world!  
You can read Bunny Cakes and hundreds of other digital books FREE on We Give Books.  It is a wonderful website to show your students and teachers.  

I can't wait to read about all of your reading celebrations too.  Have fun "Reading For The Record"!  

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Hagan Creates His Own Silent Movies With The "Peanut Gallery"

Tonight Hagan and I tried out something new.  We had so much fun!   
It is called Peanut Gallery and it is a Chrome Experiment.
This awesome tool lets you add intertitles within old film clips using your voice.  You speak over the clips and the Web Speech API in Google Chrome turns your words into text.

We looked up a little background on silent films and intertitles in Wikipedia. We found, "Intertitles, then known simply as "titles", were a mainstay of silent films once the films became of sufficient length and detail to necessitate dialogue and/or narration to make sense of the enacted or documented events."
Hagan and I wondered why it was called "Peanut Gallery" so we went to the "About" page on the website.   How fun!  We think it sounds like a fun place to sit in the theatre....

and gave Hagan (and all young people) a real reason to make these little films funny and a little bit colorful themselves.
To start, one selects a film clip to begin.  There are several to choose from as you scroll back and forth at the bottom of the screen. 
To start you just have to say "Action". 
As the film clip plays, you say the words aloud that you want as the intertitles.  
There is no typing....this is all done for you with voice. 
It was pretty tricky to get all of the correct words that we said within the intertitles.  We found a few tips on the "About" page of Peanut Gallery.  This was helpful as we create the next silent film.  
Once the silent film is complete, one can change the title by clicking on it.  
I love what Hagan renamed his silent film....

The Hunchback of Van Meter.  That is great, Hags.
When Hagan was all finished,  he saw that he could share it several different ways.
We shared it on my Facebook page and you can also share it on Google+,  Facebook, and by simply sharing the url.
Hagan also wanted to share one of his silent films in this post, so we used Camtasia to capture the video and upload it to YouTube.  It was really easy to do and then it can be uploaded, embedded, and share through YouTube as well.

I can see the Peanut Gallery being used for all kinds of projects.

Film class studying silent films.  Historical events.  Creative writing. Just for fun.

The list goes on.

I know that Hagan and I will be coming back to this tool for more fun and creating too.

A Day Of Learning & Connecting At ITEC, Iowa Technology & Education Connection

This week was a very special event in Iowa.  

The ITEC, Iowa Technology and Education Connection Conference was held in Des Moines at the Iowa Event Center.  Hundreds of educators from around the state and country gathered together for three days of connecting, learning, and sharing.  

And a little fun too.  
I was lucky and got to bring my little sidekick, Hagan, with me.  He has come with me to this conference before and we always enjoy the day together.  
To kick off the morning, Hagan and I really enjoyed listening to our friend Adam Bellows keynote entitled Crossroads.  
Next up was my presentation with two amazing friends, Terry Shay and Peter Reynolds.  Our presentation was entitled Connecting The Dots.  
How exciting to present with these two and tell our story of connecting through Dot Day, authors, and others throughout the world.  
We can't wait to connect for more Dot Days and events in the future too.  

Thank you, friends for being part of this with me.  It was great fun.  
Hagan, being a big fan of Peter's books, loved meeting him in person finally. 

To share all of the connections that we have had over the last few years for Dot Day was inspiring to others to make connections and collaborate.  
 And definitely say WOW!
 Afterward Peter and Hagan "connected the dots" one more time.
 He also gave us these beautiful hand painted hearts which we will treasure always.
My afternoon session was entitled Lessons From Entrepreneurs for Schools, Teachers, and Students. This one was a panel discussion led by Dr. Gordan Dahlby, Adam Bellow, and the Waukee Schools CAP program.

We told our stories of being educators and turning our passion for teaching, helping, and inspiring others into a successful career and future.
It was so great catching up with Adam and his adventure with EduTechr and EduClipper.
Hagan and I also spent time walking through the vendor hall and seeing lots of friends.  

We loved meeting our friends from in person.  If you haven't yet, make sure you check out their website...It is amazing and kids love it!  
We also found the series, Internet Do's and Don'ts that I wrote with Rosen Publishing. I always love spotting them...And even more I love hearing the stories of how other librarians and teachers are using them.
 We ended our day with a treat from Smokey Row...
 And a fun fall get together with wonderful friends at The Machine Shed.

I love days like this because of these friendships and connections most of all.  I can't wait for next year.