Sunday, August 5, 2018

NASA Mars Rover project.

This school year, I am looking to develop my school's interest in Robotics. I stumbled across this project in my feed. It is a miniature version of the NASA JPL Mars Rover.

I plan to build and program a robot with my students at Waupaca Middle School. Students will learn to work design and build, program, and find solutions to robotic exploration. We will follow the Stanford Design process, and create tools for the robot to be able to find information about it's environment.

I am developing the unit now, but I will post links and resources as I create them.

'Rover Climbing' from Github via CC2.0

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Getting Started with Green Screen

Green Screen Setup 1
Students on location by Art Schultz, All rights reserved.

Green Screen Setup 2
Students on location by Art Schultz, All rights reserved.
Over the last year, I worked with students to create a broadcast studio for my school's announcements.  We worked with a live recording, where our 'anchor desk' could record the pieces together.

There were a lot of pieces, but we were able to get some nice results.

Items needed:

  • Green Screen or Painted Green wall.  I used a Matte Finish green paint from my local paint store. 
    Paint Swatch
  • Lights.  I found mine on Amazon.  
  • Video Camera or Digital SLR with an HDMI output.  I had a Nikon D3300 and a Samsung Video camera.  Having the ability to zoom is a good idea for larger groups.
  • HDMI Capture Card, and a cable to suit. I use the Blackmagic UltraStudio Mini Recorder, which outputs to Thunderbolt on my iMac.  But the Elgato Cam Link looks good too. Check the connections on your computer, because this is the device that connects your Camera to your computer. 
  • Software.  OBS Studio is a great piece of open source software. It runs on multiple operating systems.  It connects to almost everything, and if you work hard at it, you can connect almost any source for video assets.  There are lots of resources on YouTube to use it effectively.  Stream to YouTube, Twitch and other sources.  Green Screen effects, video sources... it can do amazing things!
  • A second monitor is handy.  I connect and mirror my iMac to the second display, so my presenters can see the live effects in their recording.
We used iPads and iMovie for iOS for our recorded news segments.  Student crews went on location with those devices.  

An alternative is to look at iPads for recording your Green Screen segments. Touchcast or Green Screen by DoInk are great apps for achieving this.

I hope this helps you get started with a classroom or other situation.  If you have questions, feel free to reach out in the comments below.

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Adobe Spark for Chromebooks

Adobe Spark is a great way to create video with a Chromebook.  It is simple, scaffolded, and works. 8th grade students at my school are currently using it for Social Studies, but it could be used for many applications.

Here are my tips for getting started with Adobe Spark Video on a Chromebook.  Full video above, but my tips are linked below by topic.

Finding and Inserting Pictures: Start 2 minutes in.
Creating Map images with Google Maps to insert: Start 5 minutes in.
Starting to record your voice overs : Start 6 1/2 minutes in.
Downloading and Sharing: Start about 7 minutes in.

Hope this helps!

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Trading Cards for Historical Figures

Trading Cards for Historical Figures

King Kelly Baseball Card
'King Kelly' via CC2.0

I was asked by a teacher in my building to help make a template for students to make 'historical figures trading cards'.  Not old baseball cards. Basically a sports card, that students could edit to show details about a person that they could research. The template is linked below the video clip.

Here is my short explanation of how to modify...

Here is my template for Making a Trading Card in Google Drawings.

Hope this helps you!

Sunday, December 31, 2017

New Year’s resolutions... Google Certified Trainer

New Year 2018

Hi everyone,


It’s been a bit since I’ve posted... but I have been working on my resolutions, or just goals.

So, I thought I would post a few of them here, so maybe I will keep them.
Firstly, I want to take more photos this year.  I want to be more creative, and spend more time working with my camera.  Post to Instagram more often.

I also want to blog more.  Frankly, I have been slack after changing jobs, and I have to work towards documenting my ideas more.

I want to experiment more with robotics and programming this year.  I have been playing with Ozobots with my Hour of Code project.  I will be posting more with that in my next post soon.

Winter Break project

Google Certified Trainer Application

I have been working to certify as a Google Certified Trainer.  The process has gotten easier since I last certified.  The tests are fewer, and less expensive.

So, why should I certify?  Well, you build skills.  You delve into Google products that you might not have played with before.  Dig deeper. Learn.  The Google Training program has many lessons built, to help you review.  Get started with your training at the Google Training Center.  It has skills to build with Google products, Digital Citizenship, and skills you can build with being a better trainer.

Selfie with Google Badges

If you want to be a Google Certified Trainer, you need to pass three tests and have done 5 recent trainings.  The tests are Google Certified Educator 1, Google Certfied Educator 2, and the Trainer Skills assessment.  Each has a fee to take, but the assessments are cheaper than they had been in the past.

I enjoyed the process of applying for Google Certified Trainer over the break...

Steps to prepare for your Google Certified Trainer:

  1. Take some fundamentals training.  Practice for the Certified Educator 1 Test.
  2. Register and take the Certified Educator 1 Test.
  3. Prepare for the Certified Educator 2 Test with the Advanced course.
  4. Register and take the Certified Educator 2 Test.
  5. Prepare for the Certified Trainer Assessment
  6. Take the Trainer Skills Assessment
  7. Fill in your application, and make your video...

Here is my application video:

With luck, I will be successful... at least I got something out of the process.

Monday, October 9, 2017

Build your own teleprompter!

One of my jobs this year is teaching a media studies class for 7th graders.  I have about 13 kids right now, and we are working on creating a news program for our school.  One of the things that might help my kiddos this term is the ability to be able to see their words on screen as they record.

Here are my steps in getting a teleprompter for my classroom.  Maybe you can make one too.

My school has a great 3d printer, a Makerbot Replicator Mini.  I thought, well maybe I can print one.

I found this project online by speedy777 and downloaded the STL files.  I had to modify some of the parts, so that they would print on my Makerbot.  It took a couple of days to get all of the parts together, glue some of the pieces that I had to cut, and cut down some bolts to fit more nicely.  The glass, shown in the video, is from an old photo frame, and I covered the edges in electrical tape.

I downloaded the Parrot Teleprompter app, and I control the play pause with a Saetchi Smart Pointer bluetooth remote.  All I do is gently cover the glass with a sweatshirt to darken the space around the glass and set the iPad to maximum brightness.  Students can copy/paste text from Google Docs on the iPad into the teleprompter.

This compliments my setup in OBS to record and livestream work at Waupaca Middle School.

I'll post some student work in the near future!

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Just tell me! Working in Chrome with your voice...

Have some text that you want your Chromebook to read?  It can! Your Chromebook can read passages that you highlight, if you have an extension called Select and Speak.

Talk to me please!
If you install it, you can highlight text, and get the chromebook to tell you what the highlight says!
Highlight the text and press the extension button on the top of the chrome window.  Watch the video for more detail.

Google Docs can do the opposite.  You can talk to your chromebook, and it will type what you say. Go to Tools, and Voice typing.  Give it a try!

Picture of Voice Typing in Google Docs menu.

Just remember to say words like 'period' and 'question mark' and it will add the punctuation.
Remember, this does not take the place of your editing work!  Check to make sure that it is using the correct words, (for example:  to, too, and two).

Hope this helps you to use your Chrome browser or Chromebook more effectively.