Letter to Camp Week 3

I’ve not been around the camp as much as I hoped this week, so am sending this note. It has been a busy week here in Scottish Edu Tech land.
I did keep up with most of my daily chores, mostly by using my phone and not taking too long about it. I particularly enjoyed the 6 minutes past the hour day, an interesting activity. I’ll embed the various tdcs below and a set from the 6 minutes past too.
I’ve bumped into quite a few campers along the way, mostly on flickr comments http://www.flickr.com/activity/ is a useful way to keep up with this traffic. I’ve also visited a few of my fellow campers assignment posts and had a few chats.
Strangely I’ve not seen any/many of the folk from my Bunkhouse, the Wäscälly Wäbbits in passing, I’ve not made it into minecraft at all this week. I did watch, in a school I was visiting, some 11 year olds co-operation to build various things in minecraft on iPads. Inspiring and I hope to get up and running in there soon.

My week 2 daily creates:

Please specify a Flickr ID for this gallery

My 6 past the hour set for tdc ds106 day in your life – Take a photo at 6 minutes past the hour for an entire day.

Please specify a Flickr ID for this gallery

I’ve installed the Before After WordPress Plugin. I’d used the Javascript before so was please to find a plugin.

A few years off

Create a new you — MISSION: DS106 an easy one for 2 stars, if I was counting. I just took off a couple of year so fairly subtile. Read a couple of googled tuts for photoshop: Removing Wrinkles – Photoshop Tutorials and another one I’ve lost.

more intersting, to me, is the Before After WordPress Plugin. I’d used the Javascript before so was please to find a plugin.

Warhol Me

This is my first assignment for this session of DS106 Warhol Something

Take a photograph, or use an existing one, and create a piece of pop art. You can use something ordinary, like Warhol’s Campbell’s Soup can, or do a portrait, like Warhol’s Marilyn Monroe. This can be done in Photoshop, Gimp, or whatever photo editing software you have available.

I’ve done something of this sort before, tracing photos with drawing software (the face trace below from 2007) and even did a wee tutorial using the smartboard software to do the same thing, great fun for kids tracing a giant face.

It is even easier to do with photo booth, I am sure there is even an iPhone app that would do the job. But on of ther aims of my ds106ing is to lose the photoshop fear, so I loaded up the recommend Andy-Warhol-Up Your Photographs with this Photoshop Tutorial and followed along. The tut does what it says on the tin. I could have spent a lot longer tweeking the modes of the layers and messing about with colours, but this is enough for one day. (I’ve been ds106ing a lot over the last few days, mainly due to having a couple of days holiday


That was week 2 I think…

I love the sense of timelessness that you get after a short while camping, hard to know which day it is.
Starting to make some contact with my bunkmates and other folk, some amazing folk here. Still trying to find my minecraft feet. Lots of kindly help.

So for week 1 we had to:

Watch and Review Mike Wesch Videos Michael Wesch at UMW Faculty Academy Part 1 and Part 2

The main point of this week’s reflection is to connect the concepts described by Wesch to your own experiences on the web, and project how this might play out as you develop your own online space for this class.

I am not going to reflect much on this here, but I though some workflow/playflow notes might be of interest.
I, like any other teacher interested in Web 2, am aware and have nodded along to Mike Wesch’s famous youtubes. I was keen to watch these ones, but 2 hours seems a long time to spend. I downloaded the videos, ripped the audio, converted to MP3s and stuck on my dropbox:

I then made them favourites on my iPhone so that I could listen to them away from wifi. Yesterday (Sunday now 2 days ago) I was driving an hour to go for a walk, so listen to one on the way there and one coming back. This is one of the reasons that I am a podcasting fan, as a consumer I can multitask. As a producer podcast has needs fewer media skills, so I like that too.

Listen to someone with a powerful presentation that includes video is not ideal, but this worked, I’ve seem some of the material before and imagined the rest. The problem was, it is hard to take notes or mark time when driving (Ideally, I’d like a voice controlled app that I could pause a podcast/audio and record my own audio notes).

One of Mike Wesch’s big points is how learners are disconnected from the classroom, a familiar refrain from lots of educators across the sectors. He clearly demonstrated how he had overcome this by involving the learners more fully in the teaching & learning process. Of course he tells it less baldly than that, his examples are beautiful. This is the way mainstreak Scottish education is developing through the curriculum for excellence. It feels right, there are now lots of great examples (plenty of recent Scots one on pedagoo.org) and on a tiny scale I’ve occasionally seen it work in my classroom.

I am still left wondering if this will work longer term. I do worry that the best example of this depend on really outstanding teacher connecting in unique ways with classes. The proof might be after a few dozen DS106 the question, how many daily creates and assignments do I have to do? no longer exists?

My week 2 daily creates:

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That was five tdcs in one week. I find it easier to try and do as many as possible, last session once I slowed down I stopped.

Plugin notes: For Week three we are to try some plugins, I’ve already installed the Google Fonts Plugin. I couldn’t get Awesome Flickr Gallery to authenitcate with my flickr API key. I am now using slickr flickr which seems to do the trick.

Camp Note Saturday 2 June


tihs is just a quick note of a couple of things I’ve been doing over the last day or two at camp. Apart from getting killed in the wide game. I’ve added a nice wee plugin to this blog. The google fonts plugin allows you to add a google font. The control panel lets you add some custom CSS to use the font if you do not want to apply it to say all titles or all headings. I’ve just added a class, campletter for the ‘Over the Rainbow’ font. I also added a drop shadow and a rotate to the CSS.

.campletter {font-family:'Over the Rainbow',san-serif;font-size:18px;background:#ee9;
transform: rotate(10deg);
-ms-transform: rotate(11deg); /* IE 9 */
-webkit-transform: rotate(10deg); /* Safari and Chrome */
-o-transform: rotate(10deg); /* Opera */
-moz-transform: rotate(10deg); /* Firefox */
-moz-box-shadow: 10px 10px 5px #888;
-webkit-box-shadow: 10px 10px 5px #888;
box-shadow: 10px 10px 5px #888;

It is pretty easy to get the CSS code for this sort of thing, just google it. The google fonts pluggin settings page has a section for custom CSS SO I didn’t even have to edit the theme.

The other thing I’ve been playing with is the iPhone friendly daily create page I made. Now shows the creations for the last 5 daily creates:TDC Today. I am finding this quite useful, this afternoon I was. Standing right beside this destroyed hut when I checked TDC. The code is now a real mess of php and JavaScript, it seems to work here. Let me know if you try it and it doesn’t do what it says on the tin.