Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Discover Canva's Magic Studio. An innovative platform offering a suite of tools for photo and text editing, graphic design, and media creation.

Introduction to Canva's Magic Studio



Canva has introduced some fantastic new options that are set to revolutionize the way you create and edit media. These features are part of Canva's Magic Studio, and they are designed to make your design process smoother and more efficient.

Let's dive into these exciting features, starting with Magic Media.

Magic Media: An Overview

Magic Media is a powerful tool that offers several functionalities to enhance your design workflow. You can access it by scrolling down and selecting the "Try Magic Media" option. This feature walks you through everything you need to know about the Magic Studio.

Here are some of the key features of Magic Media:

Background Remover

Magic Grab

Magic Eraser

Resize and Magic Switch

Background Remover

The Background Remover feature is incredibly useful for isolating subjects in your photos. To use it, simply select the photo you want to edit, click on "Edit," and then choose "BG Background Remover."


The tool will automatically remove the background, leaving you with a clean, isolated subject. It's that easy!

Magic Grab

Magic Grab is another fantastic feature, though we covered it in a previous post. This tool allows you to effortlessly grab and manipulate elements within your design. It’s especially useful for quick adjustments.


Magic Eraser

The Magic Eraser is a straightforward yet powerful tool for removing unwanted elements from your photos. To use it, select "Edit," then "Magic Eraser."


By default, the brush size is set to 20, but you can adjust it as needed. Simply erase the unwanted elements, and the tool will do the rest. For example, if you want to remove birds from a photo, just select the birds and erase them.


It's a quick and efficient way to clean up your images.

Resize and Magic Switch

One of the most versatile features in Magic Studio is the Resize and Magic Switch. This tool allows you to transform your design into different formats effortlessly. To use it, select "Resize" and then "Magic Switch."


You can transform your design into a document, presentation, or any other format you need. This feature is particularly useful for creating summaries or converting larger designs into more manageable formats.


Once the transformation is complete, you can open the document and make any necessary edits. It's a great way to repurpose your designs for different uses.

Conclusion

Canva's Magic Studio is packed with features that make design work easier and more efficient. From removing backgrounds to erasing unwanted elements, and from grabbing design elements to resizing and transforming your work, these tools are designed to streamline your creative process.


If you have any questions about these features, feel free to reach out. We'll be exploring more of Canva's Magic Studio in future posts, so stay tuned!

Embedded below is an image of the Doc I created in the video.



Happy designing!


Take care,

Brad


Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Canva's Magic Grab Select any object from your photo for easy repositioning, resizing, and editing in your designs while keeping its background.

CANVA'S MAGIC GRAB: A COMPREHENSIVE GUIDE


Introduction to Magic Grab

Today, we're diving into the fascinating feature of Canva known as Magic Grab. This tool offers a myriad of possibilities for enhancing your designs with ease.


Magic Grab allows you to manipulate images in unique ways, making it a valuable asset for both personal and professional projects. Whether you're a teacher, a designer, or just someone who enjoys creating visually appealing content, Magic Grab can elevate your work.


Getting Started with Magic Grab

To begin using Magic Grab, the first step is to upload an image to Canva. You can do this by selecting the upload option available in the platform. For this guide, I have already downloaded a specific image to my computer.


Once the image is uploaded, you will see it appear in your uploads section. Select the image you want to work with and use it in a design by clicking on it.


Editing Your Image

After selecting your image, you will see several options for editing. Click on the image to bring up these options, and then navigate to the edit section. On the right-hand side, you will find various tools at your disposal.


One of these tools is Magic Grab. By selecting Magic Grab, you can begin to manipulate your image in creative ways. The tool will highlight the image, making it ready for customization.


Using Magic Grab

With Magic Grab activated, there are several actions you can perform:


Shrink the image

Move the image

Place it anywhere

Delete if necessary

These functionalities allow you to adjust the image to fit your design perfectly. If you make a mistake, don't worry; you can always undo your actions.


Applications of Magic Grab

Magic Grab is not just a fun tool to play with; it has practical applications, especially in educational settings. Teachers can use it to create engaging visuals for their students, enhancing the learning experience.


For instance, you can shrink images to fit into different parts of a presentation or move them around to highlight specific points. The flexibility offered by Magic Grab makes it an excellent tool for various educational purposes.


Fun and Creativity

One of the best aspects of Magic Grab is the creative freedom it provides. You can experiment with different placements and sizes, giving your designs a unique touch.


This creativity is not limited to educational contexts. Designers and hobbyists can also benefit from the tool, using it to create eye-catching visuals for social media, websites, and other platforms.


Conclusion

In conclusion, Canva's Magic Grab is a powerful feature that offers endless possibilities for enhancing your designs. By allowing you to manipulate images easily, it opens up new avenues for creativity and practicality.


Whether you're a teacher looking to make your lessons more engaging or a designer aiming to create stunning visuals, Magic Grab can help you achieve your goals. So, give it a try and explore the potential it has to offer.


If you have any questions or need further assistance, please feel free to reach out. Thanks for reading, and happy designing!

Take care,

Brad

Monday, May 27, 2024

New options in Google Chrome. Click on New Tab and search bar for suggestions to your previous searches. Simplify reading using reading mode on articles to reduce images and distractions.

 NEW OPTIONS IN GOOGLE CHROME: ENHANCING YOUR BROWSING EXPERIENCE


Introduction to the Latest Features

On May 27th, 2024, Google Chrome introduced new options to improve user experience. These updates focus on enhancing search functionality and providing a distraction-free reading mode.

In this blog, we'll explore these features in detail, showing you how to make the most of them.

Enhanced Search Suggestions

One of the significant updates in Google Chrome is the improved search suggestions. When you open a new tab and click within the search box, Chrome now displays suggestions related to your previous searches.

These suggestions help you quickly access information you’ve searched for before, saving you time and effort. For instance, if you previously searched for "CVS," Chrome will suggest this term when you start typing similar queries.

This feature also includes a "People also search for" section, offering related search topics that might interest you.

How to Use Enhanced Search Suggestions
To utilize this feature:

Open a new tab in Google Chrome.
Click within the search box.
View suggestions based on previous searches.
Click on a suggestion to view search results.
Reading Mode for a Distraction-Free Experience
Another notable feature is the new reading mode. This mode helps you focus on content by removing ads and other distractions from web pages. It’s especially useful for reading articles or long-form content online.

Activating Reading Mode

To activate reading mode:

Right-click on the page you’re reading.
Select "Open in reading mode."
Once activated, the reading mode offers several customization options to enhance your reading experience.

Customization Options in Reading Mode
When in reading mode, you can adjust various settings to suit your preferences:

Move the reading pane to your desired position.
Adjust font size and style.
Switch to dark mode or other color themes like yellow or blue light.
Change text spacing to standard, loose, or very loose.
Modify letter spacing to standard, wide, or very wide.
Benefits of Enhanced Search and Reading Mode
These new features in Google Chrome offer several benefits:

Improved efficiency with quick access to previous searches.
Better organization with related search suggestions.
A distraction-free reading environment.
Customizable reading settings for a personalized experience.
Conclusion
Google Chrome's latest updates aim to enhance your browsing experience by making search more intuitive and reading more focused. By utilizing these features, you can save time, stay organized, and enjoy a cleaner reading interface.

If you have any questions or need assistance with these new options, feel free to reach out. Happy browsing!

Take care,
Brad

NEW OPTIONS IN GOOGLE CHROME: ENHANCING YOUR BROWSING EXPERIENCE


Sunday, May 26, 2024

Check out Curipod's AI or Not AI Literacy Generator. See if students can pick out the image that is created by AI as well as see what the prompt was to create the image.

Introduction to AI Literacy 



Artificial intelligence (AI) is revolutionizing various aspects of our lives. Understanding AI literacy is crucial. This tool helps determine if content is AI-generated or not.


Curipod offers an engaging way to explore AI literacy. The platform provides options to customize and interact with AI-generated content. Let's dive into the features and benefits this tool offers.


Choosing Your Preferences

Curipod allows users to select preferences for a more personalized experience. For instance, you can choose from various categories like animals, locations, and food.


In our example, we start by selecting a dog. Next, we choose a mountain setting. Finally, we opt for a sandwich as our food choice. These selections help tailor the content we will explore.


Customizing the Experience

After choosing preferences, you can customize the content further. This feature is particularly beneficial for educators looking to create specific learning materials.


By selecting "customize now," users can see the generated slides. In this case, there are 12 slides. Each slide presents different scenarios and questions about AI-generated content.


Presenting to Students

The tool offers a presentation mode to showcase the content from a student's perspective. This interactive approach helps students understand AI literacy better.


Students will encounter questions like "AI or not?" where they must determine if the content is AI-generated. This hands-on experience is invaluable for learning.


Analyzing AI-Generated Content

One of the slides asks students to identify which image is AI-generated. This exercise sharpens their ability to distinguish between real and AI-created images.


For example, students might see two images and must decide which one is real. They can also see the prompt used to generate the AI image, providing deeper insight into the process.


Understanding Prompts

Prompts are essential in generating AI content. Curipod allows students to see the exact prompts used. This transparency helps in understanding how AI works.


Knowing the prompts can also inspire students to experiment with AI tools. They learn what kind of inputs yield specific outputs, enhancing their AI literacy.


Benefits for Students

Curipod's AI literacy tool offers several benefits for students:


Interactive learning

Real-world applications

Critical thinking

Understanding AI

Real vs. AI-Generated

One of the key learning points is distinguishing between real and AI-generated content. This skill is increasingly important in today's digital world.


Students learn to look for irregularities or inconsistencies that might indicate AI generation. This critical skill helps them navigate digital content more effectively.


Practical Applications

AI literacy has practical applications beyond the classroom. Understanding AI can help students in various fields, from technology to creative arts.


For instance, aspiring graphic designers can use AI tools to enhance their work. Similarly, writers can use AI for content generation and editing.


Conclusion

Curipod's AI literacy generator is an excellent tool for both educators and students. It offers a fun, interactive way to explore AI and its applications.


By engaging with this tool, students enhance their understanding of AI. They learn to distinguish between real and AI-generated content, a crucial skill in today's world.


If you have any questions or need further information, feel free to reach out. Thank you for reading, and take care!

Brad

Saturday, May 25, 2024

In SchoolAI how to share a Space or Sidekick you created with others.

 HOW TO SHARE A SPACE OR SIDEKICK YOU CREATED WITH OTHERS IN SCHOOLAI


Introduction to SchoolAI
SchoolAI is a powerful tool for educators, offering various functionalities to enhance the learning experience. One of the standout features is the ability to create and share content with other teachers and students. This blog will guide you through the process of sharing a Space or a Sidekick that you or another teacher has created.

Understanding Sidekicks in SchoolAI
Sidekicks in SchoolAI are customizable tools that can assist teachers in providing guided sessions for their students. These can be tailored to specific lessons or activities, making them highly versatile.

If another teacher has created a Sidekick and you want to use it with your students, the process is straightforward. Similarly, if you have created a Sidekick yourself, you can easily share it with others.

Steps to Share a Sidekick
Accessing the Sidekick
First, log into your SchoolAI account. Navigate to the Sidekick you wish to share. This can be done by scrolling through your list of created Sidekicks.

Locating Session Guidance
Once you have selected the desired Sidekick, scroll down to find the section labeled "Session Guidance." This section contains all the necessary information to share the Sidekick.

Sharing the Prompt
Within the "Session Guidance" section, you will see an option to share the prompt. Click on this option to reveal the sharing options. You can then copy the link provided.

To ensure that the sharing process works, you can paste the copied link into another account or a document. This allows you to verify that the Sidekick is accessible via the shared link.

Practical Example
For instance, if you copy the prompt and paste it into your personal account, you should be able to access the Sidekick without any issues. This confirms that the sharing process is successful and that others can use the Sidekick as intended.

Understanding Spaces in SchoolAI
Spaces in SchoolAI are collaborative environments where teachers can create, manage, and share educational content. Spaces can be used for a variety of purposes, such as lesson plans, projects, or group activities.

Sharing a Space with other teachers or students can enhance collaboration and ensure that everyone has access to the same resources.

Steps to Share a Space
Accessing the Space
To share a Space, start by logging into your SchoolAI account. Navigate to the Space you wish to share. This can be done by scrolling through your list of created Spaces.

Locating the Share Icon
Once you have selected the desired Space, look for the share icon. This is typically located near the top or side of the Space interface. Clicking on this icon will reveal the sharing options.

Copying the Link
After clicking the share icon, you will see an option to copy the link to the Space. Select this option to copy the link to your clipboard.

To ensure that the sharing process works, you can paste the copied link into another account or a document. This allows you to verify that the Space is accessible via the shared link.

Practical Example
For example, if you copy the link and paste it into your personal account, you should be able to access the Space without any issues. This confirms that the sharing process is successful and that others can use the Space as intended.

Tips for Effective Sharing
Communicate Clearly
When sharing a Sidekick or Space, it is essential to communicate clearly with the recipients. Provide them with the necessary context and instructions to ensure they understand how to use the shared content.

Verify Access
Before sharing the link widely, verify that the link works by testing it yourself. This step helps avoid any potential issues and ensures a smooth experience for the recipients.

Provide Support
Be available to provide support to those who might have questions or need assistance with the shared content. This can help foster a collaborative and supportive learning environment.

Conclusion
Sharing Sidekicks and Spaces in SchoolAI is a simple yet powerful way to enhance collaboration and improve the learning experience. By following the steps outlined in this blog, you can easily share valuable educational content with your colleagues and students.

If you encounter any issues or have questions, do not hesitate to reach out for support. Happy teaching!

Embedded below is a YouTube playlist revolving around SchoolAI.


 

Take care,
Brad


Friday, May 24, 2024

Transforming the way student writing looks in your classroom using SchoolAI. Your Ultimate Guide to Using AI as a Writing Companion

Transforming the way student writing looks in your classroom using SchoolAI. Your Ultimate Guide to Using AI as a Writing Companion 


The other day, a teacher asked me about writing with their third graders. They wanted a companion to help write a story, go back and forth, but not give them the answers. I recommended using the sidekick feature in SchoolAI.


With SchoolAI, you have various options to assist students in their writing journey. Let me show you an example of what we created.

Creating a Writing Companion

We started with a third-grade student story. The goal is to provide encouragement and act as though you're a teacher working with them. Encourage them, keep them focused, be succinct and responsive, and always be positive. The purpose is not to tell them what to write.

You can preview the setup before launching it. Once ready, launch it and copy the link for future use. This is important for later when students need to get back into their session.

Student Interaction with SchoolAI

Students will see a screen where they can start their writing session. For example, if they are unsure about a topic, you can suggest something simple like "sports." This interaction mimics natural classroom discussions and helps them get started.

As the student writes, you can go back into SchoolAI, scroll down, and select the session to monitor their progress. This feature allows you to see all ongoing sessions.

Sharing the Student Link

To ensure students can continue their writing, you need to share the session link with them. Simply copy the student link and share it via Google Docs or another platform. This way, they can re-enter their session and continue writing.

This method is beneficial for maintaining continuity and ensuring students stay engaged in their writing tasks.

Encouraging Student Writing

Encouragement is crucial for young writers. Always provide positive feedback and keep them focused on their task. Avoid giving direct answers or writing for them. The aim is to guide them in expressing their ideas effectively.

Monitoring Progress

Regularly check the sessions in SchoolAI to monitor student progress. This allows you to provide timely feedback and support. It also helps you identify any challenges they might be facing and address them promptly.

Benefits of Using SchoolAI

Encourages independent writing

Provides real-time feedback

Facilitates continuous engagement

Supports teacher-student interaction

Conclusion

Using SchoolAI as a writing companion transforms the way student writing looks in your classroom. It provides a supportive, interactive environment that encourages students to develop their writing skills. If you have any questions, please reach out. Thanks for watching, take care, and bye-bye.

Final Thoughts

Integrating technology like SchoolAI in the classroom not only modernizes the teaching approach but also makes learning more engaging for students. By using tools that mimic real-life interactions, we can better prepare students for the future.

Remember, the key to successful implementation is consistent use and providing timely feedback. Encourage your students, monitor their progress, and watch their writing skills flourish.


Getting Started with SchoolAI

To get started, sign up for SchoolAI and explore the various features available. Set up your classroom, create sessions, and start interacting with your students. The more you use it, the more comfortable you will become with its functionalities.

For a playlist of videos I have created revolving around SchoolAI see the embedded playlist below.



Take care,
Brad

Thursday, May 23, 2024

Create Music Using Code.org's Music Lab

CREATE MUSIC USING CODE.ORG'S MUSIC LAB



Introduction to Code.org's Music Lab

Today, we're going to explore Music Lab, a feature within Code.org. Music Lab allows you to create and experiment with music using code. You can even see featured songs created by others.

Getting Started with Music Lab

To begin, try out the Music Lab. You'll find instructions on the left side of the screen before starting your project. Let's dive in by pressing play and selecting continue to see what Music Lab looks like.

Creating a New Sound

First, you'll need to play a new sound. Drag the sound block over and change it to a different sound, like a club sound. It's pretty cool to see how it works. Continue by playing these sounds together.

Drag the sound blocks up and then press play. It's really interesting to hear the combined sounds.

Repeating Sounds

Next, you'll want to repeat a sound three times. Change the number of repeats by clicking inside the repeat block and entering three. Then, run the code to see it in action.


Make sure all three repeats have started before moving on.

Creating a Function

Now, let's create a function. This will help you understand how functions work in coding. Select the base sound and then run the function. It's super cool to see how functions can simplify your code.

Live Mode

The final step is live mode. Attach a play block to a triggered block and press one. Run the code and then press one to see it in action. Now, you're ready to start your own project.


Signing In and Featured Tracks

I recommend signing in to save your progress and explore the featured tracks created by others. It's definitely something worth checking out.


Conclusion

I introduced this to 4th grade students yesterday and it was a hit. As soon as they saw they could re-mix the music and use real audio from real songs!!

If you have any questions, please reach out. 

Take care,

Brad

Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Curipod The Simple Way to Introduce the Site to You and Your Students with a "Would you Rather" Generator.

Looking for a way to introduce Curipod to your students?



Curipod is a powerful tool that many educators and students have come to appreciate. For those who haven't used it yet, it's a platform that offers a multitude of functionalities. Whether you're looking to create full lessons or just want to dip your toes in the water, Curipod has something for everyone.


In this guide, we'll explore a simple way to get started with Curipod by using a fun and interactive activity known as "Would You Rather." This activity is a great way to engage students without the need to create a full lesson plan.


Getting Started with "Would You Rather"

To begin, navigate to the Curipod platform and look for the "Would You Rather" activity. This activity allows you to pose fun, thought-provoking questions to your students. Let's walk through an example to illustrate how it works.


Example: Baseball

Start by typing in a question. For instance, you could ask, "Would you rather hit a home run every time you swing but ride a unicycle to the baseball field, or have the ability to run at lightning speed?" This question is both amusing and engaging, making it a perfect icebreaker.


Once you've typed in your question, you can customize it to better fit your class's interests. If neither option appeals to you, you can easily regenerate the question by scrolling down to your recent generators and selecting a new topic.


Customizing Your Questions

Customization is a key feature of Curipod. Let's say you want to change the topic to something more relatable to your students. You could choose a popular figure like Taylor Swift and ask, "Would you rather have Taylor Swift write a song about your life but never be able to listen to it, or...?"


This flexibility allows you to tailor the activity to your students' interests, making it more engaging and relevant.


Presenting the Activity

Once you're satisfied with your question, it's time to present it to your students. Hit the "Present" button, and you'll be given a code that your students can use to join the activity on their devices.


When your students join, they'll see the question on their screens. They have a minute to make their choice. Because this is a demonstration, we'll proceed as if you're the only participant.


Running the Activity

With everyone joined in, hit the "Play" button. The question will appear on all devices, and students will have a minute to respond. This interactive element makes the activity dynamic and engaging.


Once the time is up, the results will be displayed. This immediate feedback is a great way to spark discussions and debates among students, adding an extra layer of engagement.

Analyzing the Results

After the activity, you can review the results. Curipod provides a detailed overview of student responses, allowing you to gauge the class's preferences and interests.


This data can be invaluable for tailoring future lessons and activities to better suit your students' needs.

Additional Features

Curipod offers a range of other features that can enhance your teaching experience. Here are a few:


Easy customization

Interactive presentations

Instant feedback

Data analysis

These features make Curipod a versatile tool that can be adapted to various teaching styles and objectives.

Engaging Students

One of the primary benefits of Curipod is its ability to engage students. The interactive nature of the platform keeps students involved and interested, making learning more enjoyable.

Activities like "Would You Rather" are particularly effective because they combine fun with critical thinking, encouraging students to consider different perspectives.

Conclusion

In summary, Curipod is a powerful and flexible tool that can significantly enhance the learning experience. Whether you're creating full lessons or just looking for a quick, engaging activity, Curipod has something to offer.


If you have any questions or need further assistance, don't hesitate to reach out. Happy teaching!

Take care,

Brad

Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Book Creator. How to limit the number of books students can create plus a number of options in library settings + a deal until end of May.

 


May 21, 2024

MAXIMIZING YOUR BOOK CREATOR EXPERIENCE

Library Settings Overview

Book Creator offers a variety of settings to help you manage your library effectively. Understanding these settings can enhance your overall experience and streamline your book creation process.


To access the library settings, click on the settings cog located in the upper right corner of your library. Here are some of the key options you will find:


Change library name

Allow image search

Edit own books

Read each other's books

Publish books online

Comments

Use spell check

Changing the Library Name

One of the first settings you may want to adjust is the library name. This can be done easily within the library settings. Having a clear and descriptive name helps in organizing your books and makes it easier for others to recognize your library.


Allowing Image Search

You have the option to allow users to search for images directly within Book Creator. This feature can be very helpful, especially for younger learners who may not have the skills to find and upload images independently. However, it's essential to monitor the types of images being used to ensure they are appropriate for your audience.


Editing Own Books

It's generally a good idea to allow users to edit their own books. This encourages creativity and gives them the freedom to make changes as they see fit. However, you may want to review their work periodically to provide feedback and ensure quality.


Reading Each Other's Books

Enabling users to read each other's books can be a great way to foster a sense of community and collaboration. However, for younger learners, it might be best to toggle this option off initially. This allows them to focus on their own creations without being influenced by others' work.


Publishing Books Online

Publishing books online can be an exciting feature, but it comes with its own set of considerations. For younger users, you may want to toggle this option off to maintain privacy and control over the content being shared.


Comments

Allowing comments on books can provide valuable feedback and encourage interaction. However, it might be best to disable this feature initially, especially for younger users, to avoid any potential negative interactions.


Using Spell Check

Spell check is a useful tool that helps maintain the quality of the content. It's generally a good idea to leave this option enabled to assist users in producing polished and professional-looking books.


**Creating Multiple Books**

One of the standout features in Book Creator is the ability to manage the number of books each user can create. If you are using the free version, you are limited to 40 books. For younger learners, it might be beneficial to limit the number of books they can create at one. This prevents them from repeatedly hitting the "new book" button and helps them focus on completing their current projects.


Upgrading Your Plan

If you find that the free version's limitation of 40 books is restrictive, you have the option to upgrade your plan. Upgrading can provide additional features and a higher book limit, making it easier to manage larger libraries and more extensive projects.


As of May 21, 2024, Book Creator is offering a promotion where you can upgrade your plan at half the regular price until the end of May. This is an excellent opportunity to take advantage of enhanced features at a reduced cost.


Conclusion

Book Creator offers a versatile platform for creating and managing digital books. By understanding and utilizing the various settings available, you can optimize your library for a better user experience. Whether you are working with younger learners or managing a larger library, these settings provide the flexibility needed to tailor the platform to your specific needs.


If you have any questions or need further assistance, please feel free to reach out. Happy creating!

Take care,

Brad

Monday, May 20, 2024

Looking for a simple and easy to use screenshot tool that includes the ability to include text, lines, arrows, etc? Try the Lightshot extension.

 MASTERING SCREENSHOT TOOLS

 A COMPREHENSIVE GUIDE



Introduction to Screenshot Tools

In today's digital age, taking screenshots has become an essential skill. Screenshots can be used for various purposes, including creating tutorials, capturing important information, or simply sharing interesting content with others.


If you are using a Windows-based device, there are several tools available to help you capture screenshots efficiently. This guide will walk you through the process of using two popular screenshot tools: the built-in Snipping Tool and the Lightshot Screenshot Tool extension for Google Chrome.


Using the Snipping Tool

The Snipping Tool is a built-in utility in Windows that allows you to capture screenshots easily. It offers several features that make capturing and editing screenshots a breeze.


Accessing the Snipping Tool

To access the Snipping Tool, follow these steps:

Click on the Start menu.

Type "Snipping Tool" in the search bar.

Select the Snipping Tool from the search results.

Once you have opened the Snipping Tool, you can pin it to your taskbar for easy access in the future.


Taking a Screenshot

To take a screenshot using the Snipping Tool:


Open the Snipping Tool.

Click on "New" to start a new screenshot.

Select the area you want to capture.

After capturing the screenshot, you can save it, copy it, or print it directly from the Snipping Tool interface.


Editing Your Screenshot

The Snipping Tool also offers basic editing features. You can use the pen tool to draw on the screenshot, highlight important areas, or erase unwanted parts. These editing features make it easy to customize your screenshots before sharing them.


Introducing the Lightshot Screenshot Tool

While the Snipping Tool is useful, some users may prefer a more advanced tool with additional features. The Lightshot Screenshot Tool is a popular extension for Google Chrome that offers a range of powerful features for capturing and editing screenshots.


Installing the Lightshot Screenshot Tool

To install the Lightshot Screenshot Tool:


Open Google Chrome.

Go to the Chrome Web Store.

Search for "Lightshot Screenshot Tool."

Click "Add to Chrome" to install the extension.

Once installed, you will see the Lightshot icon in the top-right corner of your browser.


Taking a Screenshot with Lightshot

To take a screenshot using Lightshot:


Click on the Lightshot icon in the browser toolbar.

Select the area you want to capture.

Lightshot allows you to capture any part of your screen quickly and easily. Once you have selected the area, you can edit the screenshot using various tools.


Editing Your Screenshot

Lightshot offers several editing tools to enhance your screenshots:


Pen Tool: Draw on the screenshot to highlight areas.

Undo: Remove the last action.

Underline: Emphasize important text.

Arrows: Point to specific elements.

Rectangle: Focus on a particular area.

Color Change: Select different colors for annotations.

Marker: Highlight text or areas.

Text Tool: Add text to the screenshot.

These tools make it easy to customize your screenshots and add annotations to convey your message effectively.


Saving and Sharing Your Screenshot

Once you have captured and edited your screenshot, you have several options for saving and sharing it:


Save: Save the screenshot to your computer.

Copy: Copy the screenshot to the clipboard.

Print: Print the screenshot directly.

Search: Search for similar images online.

Share: Share the screenshot via email or social media.

These options make it easy to use your screenshots for various purposes, whether you need to include them in a document, share them with colleagues, or post them online.


Why Use Lightshot?

While the Snipping Tool is a great built-in option, Lightshot offers several advantages:


More editing tools.

Easy to use.

Quick access via Chrome.

Advanced sharing options.

These features make Lightshot a versatile and powerful tool for anyone who needs to take and edit screenshots regularly.


Conclusion

Whether you are using the built-in Snipping Tool or the Lightshot Screenshot Tool, capturing and editing screenshots on a Windows-based device is a straightforward process. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can easily take screenshots, edit them to highlight important information, and share them with others.


If you have any questions or need further assistance, feel free to reach out. Happy screenshotting!

Sunday, May 19, 2024

Easily copy text from YouTube videos with the Select Text Extension




Capturing Video Transcripts with Precision

As a content creator, you educator, or student, you may often find yourself needing to extract text from YouTube videos - whether it's a lecture, a tutorial, or any other type of informational video. Manually typing out the transcript can be a tedious and time-consuming process, but there's a simple solution that can save you a lot of time and effort: the Select Text extension for your web browser.


Introducing the Select Text Extension

The Select Text extension is a powerful tool that allows you to easily select and copy text directly from YouTube videos. Once installed, the extension adds a small "S" icon to the top-right corner of your browser window, which you can click to activate the text selection feature.


How to Use the Select Text Extension

Using the Select Text extension is a breeze. Simply navigate to the YouTube video you want to extract text from, and click the "S" icon in your browser. The extension will then highlight all the text on the page, allowing you to easily select and copy the specific sections you need.


Here's a step-by-step guide on how to use the Select Text extension:

Install the Select Text extension: The extension is available for both Chrome and Firefox, and you can find it by searching for "Select Text" in your browser's extension store.

Open the YouTube video: Navigate to the video you want to extract text from.

Click the "S" icon: Once the extension is installed, you'll see a small "S" icon in the top-right corner of your browser window. Click on it to activate the text selection feature.

Select the text you need: The extension will highlight all the text on the page, allowing you to easily select the specific sections you want to copy. Simply click and drag to select the text you need.

Copy the text: Once you've selected the text, you can copy it to your clipboard by pressing Ctrl+C (Windows) or Command+C (Mac).

Benefits of Using the Select Text Extension

The Select Text extension offers several benefits that make it a valuable tool for content creators and researchers alike:

Accurate transcription: By directly copying the text from the video, you can ensure that your transcript is 100% accurate, without the risk of introducing typos or errors.

Time-saving: Manually typing out a video transcript can be incredibly time-consuming, but the Select Text extension allows you to capture the text in a matter of seconds.

Versatility: The extension works with any YouTube video, making it a versatile tool that you can use for a wide range of projects and research needs.

Convenience: With the Select Text extension installed, you can quickly and easily extract text from YouTube videos without having to leave your browser or switch between different applications.

Conclusion

If you find yourself needing to extract text from YouTube videos on a regular basis, the Select Text extension is a must-have tool. By making the process of capturing video transcripts quick and easy, the extension can save you a significant amount of time and effort, allowing you to focus on more important aspects of your work.


So why not give the Select Text extension a try? With its simple, intuitive interface and powerful text selection capabilities, it's a tool that every educator, content creator, and researcher should have in their arsenal.

Take care,

Brad

Saturday, May 18, 2024

Mastering Teleprompt: Your Guide to a Free Teleprompter Tool

Mastering Teleprompt: 

Your Guide to a Free Teleprompter Tool



Introduction to Teleprompt


Teleprompt is a versatile app available on Chromebooks and as a website. This tool can be incredibly useful for anyone needing a teleprompter for presentations, speeches, or recordings. It's user-friendly and offers a range of customization options to suit individual needs.


In this guide, we will walk you through how to use Teleprompt, from installing the app to adjusting settings for the best user experience.


Getting Started with Teleprompt

The first step in using Teleprompt is to get your text ready. You can copy and paste any text into the app. For demonstration purposes, I used some dad jokes to showcase the tool's functionality. One important tip is to add spaces between lines of text. This helps in making the text more readable as it scrolls. I will explain the significance of this in more detail later.

How to Use Teleprompt


After pasting your text into Teleprompt, you can start presenting by selecting the "Start Presenting" button. At the top of the screen, you will see your text appear with the spaces you added. You can press "Start" to begin scrolling through the text. The speed of the scrolling can be adjusted to match your reading pace. This is where the spacing becomes important; without it, the text can become jumbled and hard to read.

Installing the Teleprompt App

If you prefer to use Teleprompt as an app rather than a website, you can easily install it. Simply select the option to install the app from the website. Once installed, you can find the app on your Chromebook.

To locate the app, close out of the website and look for it in your app list. Open the app to start using it just like you would on the website.


Customizing Your Teleprompt Experience


Teleprompt offers several customization options to enhance your experience. You can adjust text direction, font, font size, and display settings. These options allow you to tailor the teleprompter to your specific needs.


Here are some of the customization options available:


Text Direction

Font Selection

Font Size

Display Colors

Text Margins


Practical Tips for Using Teleprompt

Using Teleprompt effectively requires some practice. Here are a few tips to help you get the most out of the tool:

Add spaces between lines of text for better readability.

Adjust the scrolling speed to match your reading pace.

Practice with the app before using it for important presentations.

Use your mouse to scroll back up if needed, but be aware it may get jumpy.

Conclusion

Teleprompt is a powerful and free tool that can make your presentations smoother and more professional. By following this guide, you can set up and customize Teleprompt to fit your needs perfectly.


If you have any questions or need further assistance, feel free to reach out. Happy presenting!

Take care,

Brad

Friday, May 17, 2024

MagicSchool - Unlock Your Students' Writing Potential with Customizable Feedback Tools

 

Unlock Your Students' Writing Potential with Customizable Feedback Tools

Revolutionize the Writing Process with Magic School

As educators, we understand the importance of providing meaningful feedback to our students to help them improve their writing skills. However, the process of delivering personalized feedback can often be time-consuming and overwhelming. That's where Magic School comes in, offering a revolutionary solution that empowers teachers to customize feedback tools and streamline the writing process for their students.

Personalize Feedback for Targeted Growth

One of the standout features of Magic School is its ability to allow teachers to tailor the feedback provided to their students. Instead of a one-size-fits-all approach, you can now focus on specific areas of improvement, such as sentence structure, as demonstrated in the video.

By selecting the desired feedback criteria, you can ensure that your students receive targeted guidance that addresses their individual needs. This level of personalization not only helps students to identify their strengths and weaknesses but also encourages them to take an active role in their own writing development.

Seamless Integration and Effortless Implementation

Magic School's user-friendly interface makes the process of creating customized feedback tools a breeze. With just a few clicks, you can set up a new room, specify the grade level, and select the writing task you want your students to work on.

The best part? Your students don't even need to worry about the feedback criteria you've selected. They can simply focus on their writing, knowing that the personalized feedback will be generated automatically. This streamlined approach saves valuable time and allows you to devote more attention to guiding your students through the writing process.

Empowering Students to Refine Their Writing Skills

By using Magic School's customizable feedback tools, you're not only helping your students improve their writing but also fostering a sense of ownership and accountability. When students receive targeted feedback, they can clearly identify areas for growth and take proactive steps to refine their skills.

This process encourages students to become more self-aware and engaged in their own learning, ultimately leading to greater success in their writing endeavors. As they receive feedback and implement the suggested improvements, they'll experience the satisfaction of seeing their writing skills evolve, boosting their confidence and motivation.

Streamlining the Feedback Process for Educators

As an educator, you know that providing meaningful feedback can be a time-consuming task, especially when dealing with a large number of students. Magic School's customizable feedback tools alleviate this burden, allowing you to efficiently deliver personalized guidance without sacrificing the quality of your feedback.

By automating the feedback generation process, you can focus your efforts on other important aspects of teaching, such as lesson planning, classroom management, and one-on-one support. This streamlined approach not only benefits you but also empowers your students to take ownership of their writing development.

Unleash the Power of Customized Feedback with Magic School

In today's dynamic educational landscape, the ability to provide personalized feedback to students is crucial for their academic growth and success. Magic School's customizable feedback tools offer a game-changing solution that revolutionizes the way teachers approach the writing process.

By empowering you to tailor the feedback to your students' specific needs, Magic School enables you to create a more engaging and effective learning environment. Unlock the full potential of your students' writing skills and watch them flourish with the help of this innovative tool.

Embrace the Future of Writing Feedback with Magic School

As you embark on this exciting journey with Magic School, you'll discover a world of possibilities for enhancing your students' writing abilities. By leveraging the power of customizable feedback tools, you can unlock new levels of engagement, motivation, and academic achievement.

Embrace the future of writing feedback and join the countless educators who have already experienced the transformative impact of Magic School. Elevate your students' writing skills and empower them to become confident, skilled communicators. The path to writing excellence starts here.


Thursday, May 16, 2024

Magic School - Unlocking the Power of Raina: Exploring the Smartest and Fastest Models for Advanced Needs

Unlocking the Power of Raina: Exploring the Smartest and Fastest Models for Advanced Needs

Introducing the Smartest and Fastest Models of Raina

In the ever-evolving landscape of educational technology, Magic School has consistently been at the forefront, offering innovative solutions to enhance the learning experience. Recently, a exciting new development has emerged within this platform – the introduction of two distinct models of Raina, the chatbot: the Smartest and the Fastest.

Understanding the Smartest Model

The Smartest model of Raina is designed to cater to the needs of advanced and complex use cases. This model excels in tackling intricate and multifaceted issues, providing in-depth analysis, and supporting creative writing endeavors. It is particularly well-suited for tasks such as advanced data analysis, complex algorithms, and statistical modeling.

One of the standout features of the Smartest model is its ability to assist with research paper editing. By leveraging its extensive knowledge and attention to detail, Raina can help students and researchers ensure their work adheres to the necessary grammar rules, citation guidelines, and formatting requirements.

Furthermore, the Smartest model shines in the realm of educational resource development. Whether it's creating comprehensive lesson plans or designing interactive learning activities, this model can provide invaluable support to educators, helping them craft engaging and effective learning experiences for their students.

The Fastest Model: Efficiency at its Core

In contrast to the Smartest model, the Fastest model of Raina is optimized for speed and efficiency. This model is particularly well-suited for users who require quick responses and immediate assistance with their tasks.

While the Fastest model may not offer the same level of depth and complexity as the Smartest model, it excels in providing prompt and accurate responses to a wide range of queries. This makes it an ideal choice for users who need quick answers or guidance on more straightforward tasks.

Whether you're a student seeking a concise explanation, a teacher looking to streamline lesson planning, or a researcher in need of a swift reference, the Fastest model of Raina can be a valuable asset in your educational journey.

Seamlessly Switching Between Models

One of the remarkable features of Raina is the ability to seamlessly switch between the Smartest and Fastest models. This flexibility allows users to tailor the chatbot's capabilities to their specific needs, ensuring they can access the most appropriate level of support for the task at hand.

To toggle between the models, users simply need to look for the "Smartest" and "Fastest" options located on the right-hand side of the Raina interface. With a simple click, they can instantly shift between the two models, unlocking the power and versatility that Raina has to offer.

Unlocking the Full Potential of Raina

By embracing the Smartest and Fastest models of Raina, users can unlock a wealth of possibilities within the Magic School ecosystem. Whether you're a student seeking advanced assistance, a teacher aiming to enhance your lesson plans, or a researcher in need of comprehensive support, Raina's versatile capabilities can be tailored to meet your specific requirements.

As you explore the depths of Raina's offerings, remember to take advantage of the seamless switching between the Smartest and Fastest models. Experiment with both, and discover the model that best aligns with your needs and preferences, empowering you to achieve your educational and research goals with greater efficiency and success.

Conclusion: Unlocking the Power of Raina

The introduction of the Smartest and Fastest models of Raina within the Magic School platform represents a significant advancement in educational technology. By providing users with the ability to toggle between these two distinct models, Magic School has demonstrated its commitment to delivering personalized and adaptable solutions that cater to a wide range of user needs.

Whether you're a student, teacher, or researcher, the Smartest and Fastest models of Raina offer a unique opportunity to unlock new levels of productivity, creativity, and academic excellence. Embrace the versatility of Raina, and embark on a journey of educational empowerment that will propel you towards your goals with greater ease and confidence.

Embedded below is a YouTube playlist of MagicSchool tutorials that I created.


Take care, Brad

Wednesday, May 15, 2024

You can now add co-teachers to rooms in MagicSchool + a few more tips.

 MagicSchool (and the ability to create rooms and launch multiple tools) is a very powerful site for all classrooms and learners,

A new feature is the ability to add a Co-teacher to classrooms. 

To add a co-teacher make sure you enter into the classroom you would like to add the co-teacher to. Then, look to the top right and select co-teacher. You will then be presented with the url to share with the teacher you would like to.

What I really like is that you have to approve the request.




Embedded below you will see a playlist of multiple videos revolving around MagicSchool.



Take care,
Brad

Tuesday, May 14, 2024

Want to see the history of how a Google Doc was created? Try adding the extension Revision History. Even includes deletions, large copy/pastes, writing sessions, and active writing time.

 A little over 7 years ago I blogged about the draftback extension that allows you to basically see a "movie" of how a Google Doc was created.

Today, we will take a look into the extension Revision History.

The site describes the extension as the following, 

Revision History helps teachers see students' process when they write essays in Google Docs. It is meant to help teachers guide their students through revisions as well as to ensure that students are not just copy/pasting text from AI/LLMs/ChatGPT or other sources.

With Revision History, you can see:

- How many edits students made to their essays

- How long they spent writing

- What snippets they copy/pasted

- Watch a video replaying the document being written (NEW - in beta)

It also works with documents submitted to Google Classroom (as long as they were drafted in Google Docs).

Pretty awesome right?

Embedded below is a 1 minute and 50 second YouTube tutorial.



Take care,

Brad


Monday, May 13, 2024

Brief look into all Canva Designs available for you.

Canva is a powerful free-to-use online graphic design tool where you can use it to create social media posts, classroom websites, Google Classroom headers, presentations, posters, videos, logos and more.

Embedded below is a 1 minute and 47 second YouTube tutorial followed by a Playlist of Canva video tutorials that I have created.




   


Take care,

Brad


Sunday, May 12, 2024

Special occasion like Mother's Day? Create a Connections-style game to share all they ways that person has a connection to you!

 If you have a special occasion coming up (like Mother's Day) and you would like to create a fun way to show ways you are connected to them try creating a Connections game using this site https://connections.swellgarfo.com/ .




When you have created the game, you could share the link as is, or you could place it in a QR code generator and share the code on the inside of a card or something like that.

Embedded below is a 1 minute and 36 second YouTube tutorial.



Take care,

Brad