Brushes 3 app

Even I could make a picture look better with Brushes 3. Better in the sense it was then a bit more artistic and original. If you have real drawing skills you could do a lot with Brushes 3 as the video shows you. There is also a gallery of images and then YouTube has more clips of what people have achieved with Brushes 3. I have noticed a lot of students love playing with the paint apps where you swirl and play with colour and shape. Brushes 3This would be the perfect app for them. I have also found that as someone who is not confident with art tools at all that I got going really quickly and achieved something I didn’t have to hide. The eternal question in teaching is whether you develop strengths or weaknesses and just what the balance is. I let students work to their strengths but I always encourage them to try something different and have a go. More often than not it becomes yet another strength they can utilise in life.Not all paint apps lend themselves to being instant successes but Brushes 3 creates a confidence which I know students will appreciate. Many really like to take their time in creating imaginative images to complement their work and this type of brushwork has become the new generation doodling.

My iPad is having a spaz attack!

iPads in the classroom

iPads in the classroom

Well, that was fun. Friday double lesson is 2 hours of 31 year 8s and 31 iPads. We were week 1 , Term 4 and it was iPads behaving badly. Did I want to bring back the books and pens? No way ,but it was an interesting test of my skills to keep 31 students and their iPads on track no matter what. Unless things go wrong , you have no idea what you are capable of. I am capable of producing a lot of wires, talk and trouble shooting while I simultaneously keep my lesson going. To think I had given up multitasking. In crisis management mode you have to multitask and run the calm universe in parallel to the chaotic one. We were working. We were supposed to be creating a photo montage which we were labelling in French to load up onto the LMS . I had created the task that morning but the task showed Saturday’s date and one student spotted that. Well spotted and then it was on…

“Mrs. Woods, my iPad apps are jumping shut. Look! “ He appeared at my desk to demonstrate the offending iPad behaviour. “So, what do you think the problem is?” I asked. “My iPad is having a spaz attack.”

“Okay , so shut it down and start again and we’ll see. “ He did that but it was still misbehaving. It had 142 games apps updates to install and 15 other apps updates. He had numerous apps open. We closed those, cleared the cache and I got him to download a different document reader and all was fine for 5 minutes. “My iPad is flat.” I plugged in the charger and he sat on the other side of my desk.

My iPad has an exhausted stream. Look!” came the voice of another student. “Oh, now the battery has run out.” He borrowed my spare iPad and got on with the work. ” I can’t upload my file. Look, I’ll show you. “ This was another student. So we connected the iPad to my laptop, transferred the file and I logged into his LMS profile and he uploaded it in 2 seconds. That done, another student had exactly the same problem. Repeat process. In the meantime there was a student moaning and groaning because his iPad was so slow. “Close all your open applications, shut it down and start again.” Smiles this time. I thought that might have been it but this just kept going on all lesson and I had to keep swapping leads, connections, getting them to shut down and restart their iPads or use my laptop to transfer files and access things they couldn’t. The one student with a laptop couldn’t get on the Net so he had to see the technicians. Technology behaving badly. First week of term and it can only get better. It was a funny lesson , though. Year 8s will just adapt very quickly to any given situation and so you can manage these sorts of technology – based classroom chaos lessons quite well…if you just breathe deeply, smile lots and stay zen.

iPad Air tips and tricks

I have put up iPad tips and tricks for older iPads. This is for the newer iPads running on iOS 7. It serves as a refresher or a way of learning how to get the best use from your device. It is clear and well thought out.

Serious audio recording on an iPad

Epic tutorials takes audio on an iPad/iPhone very seriously and this 16 minute video gives you a lot of information about how to manage more professional quality audio on an iPad. The tutorial is clear, straight forward and easy to follow. If you look at the comments below the tutorial then you can see that the willingness to help others is there. He speaks about the Rode Rec  which is $7.49 from the app store. There are free audio recording apps like the ones I mentioned yesterday and there are other paid ones like bossjock studio which I have and posted about previously.

123D Sculpt

123D Sculpt This app for the iPad comes highly recommended by my year 8s. Those using 123D Sculpt are achieving images quickly, effectively and with a great deal of enthusiasm and interest. I am teaching them French and am always looking for good apps which will create a visual aspect in their work or will be quick and easy to use to enhance their learning because my main focus is French. We are making comic strips at the moment and we came up with a list of recommended apps. My year 8s could not speak highly enough of this app and when I asked them to show me what they had done and then checked again to see what they had done I could see it was very effective for them and they could do what they wanted and get the French going . I have to avoid getting lost in apps which divert them into other things. In another world I could do it differently. It has been such an instant hit I have to recommend it highly to you! What I like about it is that it gets students away from cognitive learning very quickly and straight into the explicit learning phase so that they are creating original things of their own for their own use. One of the good things about using iPads in a classroom setting is you can teach students they are not just toys. They are not just for consuming: they can be used for productivity and creativity as well.

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