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December 22, 2014

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Three things Emily shared

Three things Emily shared

Among the Valenza family traditions are the little app share sessions I have with my daughter.  Emily, an art teacher in Boston, regularly introduces me to tools and platforms I don’t find elsewhere in my network. Here are some of Emily’s current faves from this Thanksgiving: Koma Koma: Anyone, from kindergarten to adult, can use […]

Best Apps for Teaching and Learning needs your input

Best Apps for Teaching and Learning needs your input

I am honored and kinda thrilled to be a member of AASL’s Best Apps for Teaching and Learning Committee. This particular best list is now three years old and recognizes apps of exceptional value to inquiry-based teaching and learning as embodied in the AASL’s Standards for the 21st-Century Learner. The apps foster the qualities of […]

Glogster for iPad

Glogster for iPad

I’ve been a fan of Glogster since its beginning back in 2007.  A couple of weeks back the Glogster app launched. Built specifically for iPad and for Glogster EDU users, the interface is easy and elegant and allows for simple placement and linking of media objects on an intuitive drag-and-drop Glog canvas. Especially nice is […]

Hyperlapse: for telling and sharing your story a little more quickly

Hyperlapse: for telling and sharing your story a little more quickly

I’m been brainstorming all the things we might do with Instragram’s recently released (and free) Hyperlapse app. Introducing Hyperlapse from Instagram from Instagram on Vimeo. Quite simply, it makes filming time-lapse videos a simple point and shoot experience, no fancy equipment necessary.  There is virtually NO learning curve.   Instagram’s announcement shared: We designed Hyperlapse to be […]

Touch Van Gogh

Touch Van Gogh

Share this with your favorite art teachers and art-loving learners. I love that technology removes the theater rope.  That great art can be less guarded, more accessible, nearly touchable. And I sincerely hope that Touch Van Gogh, the newly updated, free, award-winning app from the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam is only the beginning of […]

Librarians wanted for smashing, blending, toolkit building.

Librarians wanted for smashing, blending, toolkit building.

Tell me if you’ve seen this happen. A classroom teacher or a teacher librarian friend attends a workshop or a webinar about a certain app, masters it and tries to use it, a lot.  There are likely better tools for the various tasks at hand, but they aren’t easily discoverable. Pre-service training does not prepare […]

So you think you know your phone

So you think you know your phone

Confession: I love my iPhone and I thought I knew how to use it, until I attended Michelle Luhtala’s latest edWeb webinar. I couldn’t make the session live, but I am actually kinda glad I watched it first in archived form.  The recording allowed me to pause and take a good look at the features […]

Why it’s important to smash a few apps (or what’s on your palette?)

Why it’s important to smash a few apps

Lately when I think about how I am going to accomplish a digital task, I find that I automatically consider the task as a creative process, a process that makes me dig into my digital toolkit or examine my digital palette, usually more than once, to discover new synergies. I’ve come to discover what I’ve […]

AASL’s picks for apps and websites

AASL’s picks for apps and websites

On Saturday, two hard-working AASL committees presented juried lists of resources. While I try my best to keep up with this stuff, these two darn committees just filled my summer with new explorations. I take that back.  They’ve actually significantly narrowed the field by pointing to the learning tools most worthy of exploring and integrating […]

Adobe Voice: Elegant, easy(!) storytelling

Adobe Voice: Elegant, easy(!) storytelling

Okay, this may be the easiest way yet to tell a professional looking story on your iPad.  I can see this app used with kiddos of nearly any age. I can see it becoming a classroom staple. (Especially when it moves to multiple platforms.) Adobe Voice is a new, free app that allows you to: […]

Fusenews: Of talking tigers and square penguins

Fusenews: Of talking tigers and square penguins

So the big news this week was that a writer at Slate decided that now was an ideal time to take a potshot at adults reading young adult books.  And, as you might expect, everyone got quite hot under the collar about it.  To arms!  To arms!  Considering that this sort of thing happens pretty […]

edshelf: it’s a directory, it’s a review portal, it’s a community, it’s a curation tool . . .

edshelf: it’s a directory, it’s a review portal, it’s a community, it’s a curation tool . . .

Look, up in the cloud!  It’s a directory.  It’s a review portal.  It’s a community. It’s a launchpad. It’s a curation tool.  It’s a playlist creator.  It’s an easy source of icons and QR codes. I’ve been using edshelf for some time now and it’s kinda become one of my superheroes for curating apps and […]

Michelle’s smashing app fest

Michelle Luhtala had been crowd-sourcing her latest edWeb,net webinar for a few weeks and we were all feeding her tips and faves. Her resulting edWeb app-share on Wednesday kinda blew my mind. It was so much more than a list of tools. It demonstrated how educators are creatively using tools for real learning and serious […]

Commencement: What do the speeches teach us?

Commencement: What do the speeches tell us?

If you are connected to a university, you’ve likely already gotten your annual dose of inspiration. If you are connected to a high school, you are either awaiting that traditional commencement moment, or preparing for it. Commencement speeches are also interesting to study. They are primary sources.  They are models for learning about rhetoric.  And […]

Google Classroom announced (sign up to text drive!)

Google Classroom announced (sign up to text drive!)

The Official Google Blog announced today a preview of its new Classroom, a free and also ad-free tool in the Google Apps for Education suite.  I am hopeful that this will prove the answer to my hopelessly messy Drive issues and a serious organizational and communication solution for my our classes. The post shares that Classroom […]

iPad Use and Babies: Throwing a Wrench in the Works

iPad Use and Babies: Throwing a Wrench in the Works

I think we all uttered a collective scream as one when news of this particular Fisher Price toy came to our attention this holiday season past: It’s called the Newborn-to-Toddler Apptivity Seat and out of curiosity I wondered if it was still on the market.  Indeed it is, and the comments on Amazon make for […]

Google Docs adds add-ons

Google Docs adds add-ons

Google has launched add-ons–easily accessible tools created by Google’s developer partners that offer on-the-fly features for your documents and spreadsheets.

buncee.edu for easy and adorable storytelling

buncee.edu for easy and adorable storytelling

Buncee is “an easy fit for digital storytelling and scrapbooking, flipping, presenting, marketing, and for communicating with parents and community,” says Joyce Valenza.

Animation Made Easy: The best tools for student projects, from stop motion to GIFs

SLJ131201w_TK._Animation

With accessible tools, you and your students can create your own simple animations to convey powerful ideas. Screencast tutorials will have you up and running with the latest “Cool Tools” from Richard Byrne, SLJ columnist and blogger at “Free Technology for Teachers.”

This article was published in School Library Journal's December 2013 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Top ten tech trends (expanded)

Top ten tech trends (expanded)

A week ago I shared ten digital tech trends within the confines of a word count.  Here’s an expanded version with all the links and details. For a profession situated at the intersection of metaliteracy, education and emerging technologies, forecasting is kind of exciting. For a profession threatened by severe cuts in educational spending and […]