Learning with Tech @ BLGPS

July 2012 Issue

Graphic Organiser


Sharing with you a graphic organiser tool called Popplet. It is basically an on-line pinboard where you can add text, pictures, videos and links. It can be used for brainstorming, collaborative work, revision, project work.

Below is an article written by Jose Picardo, Head of Modern Foreign Languages at Nottingham High School, a secondary school in England and the creator of the website http://www.boxoftricks.net/ .

Classroom magic with Popplet

Popplet is a fun and intuitive web application that allows you and your students to create galleries, mind maps and diagrams quickly an incredibly easily. I mean it. Ridiculously easily.

Pictures can easily be searched and added directly from Flickr and Facebook. The same applies to YouTube videos.

Popplets can then be shared on social networks or via email, exported as .jpg or .pdf files and embedded into websites. You can even invite others to collaborate on your popplets, enabling teacher-pupil collaboration or pair- and group-work.

I am also planning using Popplet as a presentation tool and I look forward to my pupils using Popplet to produce homework tasks, which can then be printed and turned into classroom displays. By Jose Picardo

The following Popplet was created by two pupils of P5-8, done collaboratively from home. The name of the creator of each popplet (box) can be seen so we know how much each pupil has contributed. Teachers may choose to collaborate with the pupils to edit their work and correct misconceptions.

Do sign up at http://popplet.com/. Your students will have enjoy this fun tool.

Popplet is now also available as an app for iPhone and iPad. There are paid and free versions. The free version is called popplet lite.

Watch the tutorial below and you'd be convinced at how easy it is to create popplets.

Popplet tutorial

Practising for oral

Podcast (for Reading & Pic Discussion)

Hi,Just a short sharing on using ICT to better enhance and engage learners. I did this with my class for our oral preparation. Screencastomatic:My class 6/8 2012, is rather familiar with using this so I got them to record their reading(using the oral resource kit) and pic discussion(on the spot without any script)via screencastomatic. They then upload their works into AsknLearn. I then went through the star rating and comments processes with them so they can give a deserving rating and constructive comment for the learner to improve upon. Please see the pic attached on the samples.

iChat(for Topic Conversation)

I created an iChat via AsknLearn to practise for Topic Conversation. I gave them conditions that no SMS language or emoticons are allowed, only proper complete sentences are permitted. They are encouraged listen to their peers online as we chat and to ask for clarifications and elaborations when necessary. It is like having a candidate and 39 examiners at the same time! And we learn new and different perspectives of a topic while we chat.

mo'mei'nts of reflection:

My pupils value the comments and ratings from their friends (for they think I am always out to pick on them thus I seem more critical than encouraging). It is one way I can find so-called extra time to listen to them all at a go instead of doing a 1-1 simulation(which is so time-consuming).And I can rely on others to teach their peers to be better in their oral skills, less stress on myself! I hope this works well for some of you too. Have fun!

Tips and Tricks for MS Office

Use of Quick Access Toolbar (QAT)

Hi all, will be sharing on how you can make repetitive tasks quicker by using QAT . In Office 2007, QAT was not valued that much by users because every option could be accessed easily from the Menus. But now we are using Office 2010 and it has a complete new user interface. It is time to get used to QAT.

To begin, click the Customize button as shown in the screenshot below. By default, there are only three quick access icons enabled, save, undo and redo.

Any command can be added to the Quick Access Toolbar. Click More Commands option and a new window will open from where you can browse hundreds Popular Commands.
To add a command, simply select it and hit the Add button. If you cannot find the command under Popular Command, you can browse more commands , including Macros and those which are not included in the Ribbon.
Some of us may find that the position of Quick Access Toolbar can be quite annoying. No worries, you can move it below the Ribbon. To move it below the Ribbon, click Show Below the Ribbon option in the context menu which is just under the More Commands option

(see first screenshot)

Once done, you can export it to your thumbdrive. So when you move from one workstation to other, the settings can be migrated as well.

Happy trying!! :)