pafa.net Rotating Header Image

Teaching with Infographics Workshop

infographicsI’m looking forward to leading two workshops on Teaching with Infographics on Friday March 11 at Rockland BOCES School Library System.

The resources for our workshop can be found on the Teaching with Infographics Workshop page.  I’ll also post the presentation slides after the workshop.

Update: Workshop slides here

kiddle, kidrex, search engines for kids?

kiddle(update: March 2, 2016 – Check the comments below for updates and additional links)

Kiddle.co

Lots of folks are sharing links to kiddle.co, supposedly a new kids search tool and touting it as an answer to a parent’s prayers, so to speak.

It’s not that new, the domain was registered in 2014 and the service was mentioned in some blog posts back then. But it’s getting new press this week, initially from some business magazines that should do more fact checking before they report. This tool is most definitely not some long-awaited release from Google that they describe. (more…)

Nearpod is launching 3D Virtual Field Trips

Nearpod is launching 3D Virtual Field Trips and also offering an opportunity to apply for classroom viewing kits. This Wall Street journal article, Virtual Reality Learns How to Get Into the Classroom, provides some interesting background on the project.

Google cardboard

Of course, Google Cardboard is in the 3D Virtual Reality biz too. There are lots of apps and services producing content for these viewers. The New York Times is promoting their 3D content by sending subscribers a viewer for free. Which is how I ended up with one. (more…)

Teen Tech Week & Triller App

Teen Tech Week

YALSA’s Teen Tech Week is coming up soon – March 6-12 This year’s theme is Create It At Your Library. Lots of fun resources on the Teen Tech Week website including a Creative Writing & Art Contest    Explore ideas from other libraries and share your events on the Showcase page.

Triller: Seemed like serendipity that I had info on this fun app open in a tab right next to the TTW info.  Pick a song, record some video clips, get your friends into the action and Triller will stitch your video together into a cool music video. No, I didn’t try it. Yet. 🙂  A fun Teen Tech Week activity! iOS and android.

Accessibility Workshop

Accessibilty it's the right thing to do.In October, I had the pleasure of giving a presentation on Website Accessibility at the ILEAD NY workshop in Utica, NY. I’d planned to write up my notes to accompany the slides, since the slides don’t really stand all that well on their own, but time has been in short supply lately. So better late than never? Maybe, maybe not. But I’ll post the slides anyways. (slides here)

To sum up my advice:

  • Make your website accessible because it’s the right thing to do. Per the 2010 US Census, about 20% of the population has some sort of disability.
  • And yes, it’s the law!
  • Plan for it from the start. Easier to do it right the first time than to go back and retrofit.
  • Yes, it will take time, expertise, and likely some money to do it right.
  • Aim for a site that is easy for all to use. Usable, responsive, accessible.

(And ironically, I know my website is full of accessibility issues that I need to fix. A new website coming up in a few months.)

Podcast Profile

podcast profileEver want to know what podcasts your friends are listening to? Or share your own favorites?  Podcast Profile is a simple way create a nice list of your podcasts, complete with cover art and links back to the podcasts themselves.

Lists can be arranged in any order you like and you can write notes about each one too, telling people why you like a particular podcast or share a favorite episode.

Right now the profile only appears on the Podcast Profile website. But it sounds like they developers, who hacked this together at a recent weekend hackathon, are planning to develop it further.

Make your own profile

  • Export & save your podcast playlist. In iTunes this is easy:
    • File menu –> Library –> Export Playlist –> Save as .opml or “podcast playlist” file format
  • Create account: Use your twitter account to create account on Podcast Playlist
  • Upload your playlist file. Wait a few minutes and you’ll see all your podcasts.
  • Manage Playlists: Write annotations and hide selected podcasts.
  • Reorder: Drag and drop to rearrange. A bit tedious. Don’t forget to save.

Your public page is linked to from the Profile link at the top right and includes your twitter name. Here’s mine: https://podcastprofile.com/pollyalida

Create a lists of podcasts about your town, school or community. For students, create a list of podcasts related to school projects or general topics like current news, environment, science, etc. Students could curate a list for their school.

Love that this was created at a weekend hackathon. Just reinforces how great is it to be able to code and create new tools. #getcoding