Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Web of the Week Wednesday: NoradSanta

Web Address: Just in time for Christmas.  NoradSanta Here are other Holiday Resources if you are celebrating something else.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Tech Tip Tuesday: Where in the world are you?

The Global Positioning Satellite system has become almost as ubiquitous as electricity for many of us.  We are so used to being able to use our phones to find everything from driving directions to a local pastry shop.  But with the growth of this system and it's usefulness it has had one shortcoming on the iOS platform.  You can only get a GPS reciever by purchasing the more expensive 3g/4g iPads or an iPhone.  What about an iPod?  No luck, until Now!  Well actually 2010 but I just found out about them.  It is a dock connecting GPS receiver.  It works for any of the iOS devices. Now, you might say to your self, "Self, Why would I buy this the increased price is the same as buying a dedicated GPS or the same as the extra cost to get GPS included in an iPad?" Well, I would say to yourself.  It comes down to one word. Transferencability. 1 of these devices and a classroom set of iPods could allow multiple students to enable GPS and location features when needed.  This means the iPod touch can take Geo-Tagged photos and then the student can hand off the receiver to another student and continue working on editing photos or creating a slideshow.  Even better in my mind is the GPS Pro.  It is a GPS receiver and autologger (meaning it can keep track of tracks, stops and locations) Better still it uses BlueTooth to transfer the information to iOS devices.  So this will allow 1 receiver and up to 5 Devices to connect.  I think this would be great on a Geocaching road trip. Another benefit of both these equipment add ons is that there are a multitude of Mapping/Location apps.  The limitation of a dedicated GPS receiver is that often they are like a paring knife.  Extremely useful but in only a very narrow use.  A swiss army knife can do lot's of things pretty well.  This is the iOS approach.  With the variety of Apps it is possible to do Geocaching, Turn by Turn navigation, and find coffee shops, and then take a run and keep track of where you went all on the same device. Of course, there is the option I would prefer to see.  The one the Android Market has taken.  Incorporate GPS receivers into the WiFi devices.  I have had two Android Tablets and there are a handful of handheld devices that all have GPS built right in.  So take a look at where in the world you are.  Let us know in the comments if you have tried out this device and what you use location services for on your mobile device.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Tech Tip Tuesday: Get a better Outlook on email

There are a variety of web based email systems out there to choose from.  Gmail has been on the rise, Yahoo! and AIM are still going strong. And then there is Hotmail.  Hotmail was one of the earliest free web-based email services and still boasts at least 330 million users.  Hotmail (and all of Microsoft's services) has gotten a facelift. If you are already a Hotmail user you can go to and login.  All of your emails and contacts will be there and you can use a new cleaner interface.  There are tutorials, and welcome emails to get you started but one feature to look at is the new email alias.  This allows you to essentially use two different emails that come to the same inbox.  You can choose from;; or as your domain. If this doesn't convince you to take a look at Microsoft, then there are some other things to consider.  Gmail has updated their iOS app and made it a genuine app.  This means you can do a few new things including using the App with up to 5 Google accounts. Apple is not to be left out.  iCloud will let you create an alias and receive email at as well as on your iOS devices.  These options let you really expand your capabilities and give you a throw-away email for using with online companies, one for personal or business transactions and yet another for family. So take a look around and see what email can do for you.  When you have looked them over tell us in the comments which you prefer and why.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Web of the Week Wednesday: One Hundred Free Books

Web Address: It's easy to find free books for your chosen eReader.  Many, many, many classics are out of copyright and now reside in the public domain meaning you can download them for free.  Most of the stores for the various devices distribute these Classics free, or they are available at But there are others.  One Hundred Free books shares free Kindle Books.  Basically you could find this yourself by picking a genre on and then sorting by price from low to high.  One Hundred Free Books however, peels back the wrapper of Amazon and lets you see things more easily.  Most of the free books are independent or small time, but they can make for an enjoyable indulgence into seeing what you can get for free.  Please be aware that some titles are not intended for younger readers and that UEN is not responsible for any content on the site nor is it endorsing the site. Just offering it up for your consideration.  If you do find an excellent title please share your link in the comments.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Tech Tip Tuesday: Don't Go Paperless

A few months ago, during a staff meeting one of my respected colleagues shared some exciting and different ways of using a low tech solution in the high tech classroom.  Paper Foldables.  I had seen these before and even made a few in classes I was in but for some reason they really just caught my attention. The suggestion in our staff meeting was that creating foldable research projects for our Pioneer Class could make the class more exciting.  And it has.  I have taught about Pioneer and UEN resources several times in the months since this meeting and had a lot of fun giving grown-ups paper and glue and scissors so they can create a paper pyramid of learning mobile (pronounced mo -beel) or a 1-cut 8 page book.  There are lots of sites out there to learn about Foldables and here's a list from Larry Ferlazzo Another site from another colleague is this one here:

Welcome to Jorgie Learning

I really am learning and this blog is maintained both as a record of some of what I am doing as well as a place for me to train and teach others about creating an online presence. So please don't mind the dust. We aren't remodeling we are learning!

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