Tag: Photography

App #8 of “10 Apps to Countdown Season”

App #8:  Image editors are the tools that help your ordinary images dance off pages. IrfanView is a free program (on your school computers) that does a variety of basics like compression.  I love the “batch conversion” feature when I need a ton of images resized for the web.  (click here for instructions)


When I need to add pizzazz to my images, I go to PicMonkey. This simple online editor uses a drag-and-drop display that is easy to master.  Every change you make shows immediately.  The site requires no signup and is used successfully with students as early as Kindergarten, not to mention all teachers.  More importantly, you save your images anywhere you wish.




The Basic Editor gives quite a few options to choose such as Crop, Color, Rotate, Resize.  Each option opens up further options giving you lots of choice including the ability to upload your own layers and special effects.



Most all areas use a slider for control.  When you like what you see, press ‘Apply’ and you now have a brand new image – something that you can call your very own! (This is definitely a fan favourite in our workshops. Just imagine adding this to powerpoint, publishing pieces, newsletter reports or even bulletin boards.)


Click here for instructions on using PicMonkey.


How can you see this tool being used in your classes?

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10 Apps to Countdown the Season



In keeping with the season and heading towards the winter break, I’m doing a countdown of 10 apps that add spice to your toolkit. Regardless of the application or tool you choose to use, it always comes back to purpose.



 APP #1:   Picslice is an online application (no downloading) that will take almost any image and slice into parts, crop and resize. The finished product can be used for many projects such as comics or a storytelling process. Using this image, imagine what the other parts of the full story might include.  What would be the storyline if you had this as a starting point?

Would it look like this?


Perhaps you use Edu.Symbaloo (click here for post) as a visual bookmark curation tool? While the tiles can be great, sometimes the coordination of them can be challenging for students to find what they need.  How about grouping sets of bookmark tiles using Picslice? Each slice of the image (eg. reading) goes out to a favourite reading site.  Or group all those math sites and offer them under one math image.

The possibilities are endless.  How would you use Picslice?

Using Technologies With A Purpose

The SAMR Model [developed by Ruben Puentedura] offers a framework for viewing how we integrate technologies into our curricula.  Broken into four sections [Substitution, Augmentation, Modification, Redefinition], it is a simple way to group activities that provide a variety of purposes.  The goal is to move towards teaching ‘above the line’.  You can hover over different parts of the image to see some of the examples offered.

(This image was created using Thinglink, which takes images and embeds interactivity.  For more on using this in your class, click here.)

I would love to hear your thoughts on the SAMR model or any questions you might have about this frame.


Communicating – the Art of Presentation

Consider the many times you present an idea, or tell a story.



Haiku Deck on the iPad, takes the art of presenting to a whole new level.  Take an idea or a message; synthesize it to a few words that represent the deep understandings.   Haiku Deck will use the words to locate images from Creative Commons that match the concept you are trying to say.  Or you can choose to insert your own pictures, photos, and charts.   Sharing the result can be via a projector or capture the image and send it somewhere (camera roll, email…)

How would I use this? 

What intrigues me is the coordinated way that a few well chosen terms can connect with very specific images to communicate a powerful idea.  If you’ve always used PowerPoint as your ‘go to’, consider making your presentations or messages stand out with this app. Use it to engage in Literature Circle responses, poetry, writing workshop,  social studies history segment, news promotion or poster creations.  Provide time for students to grapple with their ideas. Discussion will result in deeper themes and word phrases, which in turn generate other images.   I made this one – where do you imagine the conversation will lead?


How would you use Haiku Deck? Please consider sharing your ideas.

Running Out of Space? Resizing Images is Magic!

Just when you get it all figured out, that dreaded message comes across warning you of your dwindling space on your blog. Most of the time this is due to posting images that are photo quality (right off the camera or ipad) but not web quality.   Some of you already use IrfanView or Microsoft Picture Editor to resize your images.   Here’s an opportunity to use something off the web.  I wrote about this in a previous post entitled Little Tools.


IPiccy is an amazing online photo/image editor that we’ve successfully used with grade 2 students and higher.  And we didn’t even get flustered!  The students easily took their images, edited, and posted to the blog in one session.  Try it out and see what you think.

Click here for instructions.

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