Monday, October 15, 2012

Setting the Mood for Computer Lab

Sometimes the simplest things can liven up an environment, so I periodically change the desktop backgrounds in the computer lab. One of our favorites is the "Click or Treat" one that I created in Microsoft Publisher. Basically, I started with a blank publisher file. Setup the page size to be 16 x 9 (wide screen), inserted jack-o-lantern clipart (stretched the entire size of the page) and added the "Click or Treat"  text. Then I saved the file as a jpeg. Finally, when October rolls around I locate the picture, right click and select "Save as Desktop Background". Now, sit back and listen to the oohs and aahs.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

WGS - Fantastic High Tech Readers

This month Walnut Grove School is participating in the Be a Champion! Read! contest. The classrooms are encouraged to participate by reading and decorating an area for their class. All of this in hopes of winning prizes, gaining knowledge and making reading fun.
With that said, I didn't plan to participate. Mainly because I am a computer lab teacher and don't have a homeroom class to fulfill the reading part of the contest.
Then it hit me. WGS needs a board to represent the "High Tech" ways in which we read.

Footballs highlighted with the following media types
(and examples):
  • Online Encyclopedias (Wikipiedia, EB Kids...)
  • Search Engines (Google, Kids Click, Bing...)
  • Online News (Time for Kids,,
  • E-Reading (iBooks, nook, Kindle...)
  • Online Libraries - AVL
  • Social Networks (blogs, wikis, facebook, twitter...)
Gathering information through electronic media is not only commonplace but is a formidable means of learning.
So get out there kids and read to learn!

Help! I want to use my iPhone/iPad photos on my PC

If you are an avid iPhone/iPad user (especially iPhone users), your life moments are captured through camera apps. Am I right? We snap special occasions and silly everyday moments, important information and cute crafty ideas, or picturesque scenes. Now, we want to share or use these images. There are tons of sharing and manipulation apps, which I am not going to attempt to tackle.
But, if you still live in the PC world, there is a simple way to port images to the PC. Just follow these simple steps.
  1. Connect your iPhone to the computer using the USB -> iPhone cable. When you do this an "Apple iPhone"  dialog box will appear with several options (such as Dropbox, Microsoft Publisher, Word, etc.) 
  2. Highlight the Microsoft Scanner and Camera Wizard option and click the OK button. The wizard will step you through copying pictures from your iPhone/iPad to your computer.
  3. Select the pictures to copy, click Next.
  4. Name the picture group and choose a place/folder to store the group.
  5. Click Next and you are done.
Now, print those images, upload them to your blog and incorporate them into your Microsoft programs.
How simple is that?