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Showing posts from November, 2013

Using iPads in Grade 10 Science Dissections

In Sue Di Laudo's grade 10 enriched science class at Cardinal Carter CSS, frog dissection was done using a slightly different mode than usual. Let's back up a bit. The math and science departments acquired a full class set of iPads, cart, projector Macbook Pro and a pile of PD through the TLLP grant and currently have one grade 9 enriched math, one grade 9 enriched science class and the above mentioned grade 10 class using these iPads every day.

When it came to dissect the frogs a slightly different approach was taken. Instead of the students doing the dissection, filling out a worksheet and having the teacher come around and interview their group about what they knew, they documented their dissections via video recording (uploaded to YouTube) and completed an online worksheet complete with images they took and links to videos they shot.

By all accounts the activity was "a huge success". Students "engaged more fully as they used video to document their understan…

Free Desmos Online Graphing Calculator

So I don't know what is with me. How has it taken me this long to blog about the Desmos Online Graphing calculator? I have been using this for a while now and I keep using the word slick to describe it because I think that best describes it. Its not very complicated and it allows you to create graphs from functions (in both explicit and implicit forms),  use sliders, plot moveable points, construct tables and more. Check our more "How To" videos on their YouTube channel.
Check out my quick tutorial here:
As I mentioned in the video, one of the neat things that the Desmos people have done is to create some interactive tutorials. In these you actually work right in the graphing calculator and get prompts to show you exactly what to do. Right now there are only two, one for creating tables and one for creating sliders but hopefully they will create more.

Keep up the good work Desmos, the math-o-sphere loves you.


Mr. Spurdza's Grade 7 Class at St. Pius X Catholic Elementary School uses Google Apps for Education and the Provincial Virtual Learning Environment, or vLE, to learn and communicate, anywhere, anytime. Mr. Murphy, the Computers in Education teacher, is also part of this great learning environment. One of the fun things they did as a class was to create a collage of their names using a Google Drawing

This "live" drawing allowed each student to add their name to the wall, complete with their own colours and font! This drawing started with one name and evolved into this cool image. 

One of the great features of Google Apps for Education, or MyTools2Go, is the ability to "publish" files,  to the web.  Any file that is "published to the web" is "live"!

So, think of the possibilities:
student presentations (slideshows) can be posted, and every time the student updates the presentation, it is updated on the website, or vLEteachers can create and post…

If you build it, they will come

I recently received this message from a teacher in our school system, the Windsor-Essex Catholic District School Board:


My students are using their Google Apps for Education accounts and sharing documents with me. I'd like to take it to the next step and create a class group where I can post documents for easy access... an online classroom space.

Please send me some ideas and/or suggestions.

As the e-Learning Contact, my role is to coordinate and lead the use of the Provincial Virtual Learning Environment, or vLE. This type of message is so refreshing to receive because it shows the need that teachers have for an "online classroom space". It is a natural progression as teachers and students use more cloud-based computing models. 

Now, this teacher has the ability to make class announcements, post course content, and receive & assess student work anytime, anywhere... in a safe, secure, and private environment. The vLE allows teachers to use multimedia (video, ima…