Friday, 19 December 2008

mimio Pad

Judy Bentley from Watermans demonstrated the mimio pad to me and I loved it. So what was so cool about this technology?
  1. you don't have to have all of the other mimio gear, it operates as a mimio itself, all you need is a projector, whiteboard and laptop
  2. With a mimio Pad, you can walk about the class or work with students individually while still being in control of what is on the Whiteboard up to 10 metres away. All the mimio tools are on the pad, and you use a pen as a mouse to activate them. As a Facilitator this will be invaluable for me in my courses as I will be able to walk around looking at what teachers are doing on their computers and instead of rushing back to the laptop I can stay there with the mimio Pad and continue to demonstrate what I need to show them
  3. It can be passed around to students to use, and if your projector still is not suspended from the ceiling but sitting on the desk, then you won't have to worry about students standing in front of the projector casting shadows on the Whiteboard
  4. It does not need software, all it uses is a small mimio wireless receiver (looks like a memory stick) that plugs into your computer's USB port. The integrated rechargeable battery provides up to 16 hours of wireless operation and the mimio Pad can also be USB charged.

Hint #1 pens and batteries

Check the batteries in your mimio and IWB pens on a regular basis! I had a leaking battery in mine and discovered it before it did too much damage. If you are not going to be using them for a long time then it could be a good idea to remove the batteries until you do need them.

Wednesday, 17 December 2008

Planning, linking, websites and mimios/IWB

With mimios and IWBs comes a huge amount of activities already created for you. Plus there are all the other activities that are teacher made in Kidspiration, Inspiration, Word, PowerPoint etc. And then I see that teachers have found all these wonderful websites but are not fully utilising them to their full potential. How can we manage all these websites and activities we may have stored on our computers?
Answer: Incorporate it into your planning. Hyperlink the activities, websites, or teaching resources into your planning and launch the sites from there. This is a perfect way of managing all of these links and it is all in one place plus you are able to see what resources you are mainly using. In this example I have colour coded the activities, red for Flip charts, orange for PowerPoint, green for Inspiration, blue for websites and black for book work.

Proofreading using mimio or IWB

  • Choose a student's story that has been drafted on the computer and use that as a proof reading model at the beginning or end of a writing session
  • Have the whole class or maybe a targeted group discuss what changes need to be made and let the children take charge of the proofreading
  • use an example of drafted writing as a proofreading activity to be completed while waiting to conference (several children can be working on this activity at one time)
  • have a child drafting using the mimio/ IWB instead of in their books
  • have two children drafting on the mimio/ IWB creating a collaborative story, print out and they can proofread, edit and publish on their own
  • use the mimio/ IWB as one of the activities on your developmental circuit

mimios...some beginning thoughts

There are many mimios out in schools. A lot of teachers are not using them to their full potential, mostly because of technical issues of calibration, software and hardware conflicts, setting up problems and most of all lack of professional development.

In this particular school the mimio is attached to a LCD TV. This works well with small groups or the whole class on the mat in front of the TV. The mimio image was TV quality.

I would use the mimio attached to a TV screen more in the Junior school. It is least distacting for the whole class as it is smaller and could be used unobtrusively with small groups.

Activboards beginning thoughts

Many schools are investing in Interactive Whiteboards. A lot of teachers are not using them to their full potential, mostly because of technical issues of calibration, software and hardware conflicts, setting up problems and most of all lack of professional development. Then there is the issue of 'Which should we buy for our school?'

Here is one example of Activboards being used in one school. The Activboard has the projector attached to the screen. (Big tick here, no projector or wires hanging from ceilings or sitting precariously on tables).
The screen can be moved up and down according to the child's height. The screen is large and can be seen by the whole class right to the back of the room. Teachers have very little problems calibrating because the projector is fixed to the screen. There is a wireless keyboard that children or teacher can use anywhere in the classroom. The only down was maybe the clarity, the room needed to be darker or the projector needed to have higher lumens, but it was a minor point as it made no difference to the children.

The Activboard works well in the Senior School because it can be seen from the back of the room and when you have big children sitting in a classroom with all your furniture, there is not a lot of room for sitting up the front. I also liked how you could direct student's attention to it while they are working at their desks and they could all easily see it.

Monday, 1 December 2008

Google Font

Create a cool title or heading for your Wiki or Blog using Google Font. Type in the words and click Create Logo!

Click on Download Logo

Do a right click over the logo and select Save Picture as

Save it to a folder on your computer and insert as a picture into your wiki or blog.