Archive for EDDL 5131

Assignment 3 – Image

BEDMAS Graphic

For this graphic, I wanted something visually striking, paired with a catchy slogan. Interestingly, though I thought this would be the simplest piece to produce, it ended up taking me the longest time to come up with a final version that I was happy with.
The theme I decided to run with was a military one. I’ve always been less than satisfied with most BEDMAS graphics, as there is often no distinction between the brackets component, versus the exponents. Whereas the Multiplication and division are of “equal rank” as are addition and subtraction; and thus, governed by “left to right,” brackets and exponents must be handled in order. This has caused some confusion for my students in the past, which led me to want to revisit and clarify a very old acronym.

My first choice was orientation of the word. I have often seen BEDMAS as a vertical acrostic, however as most of my students are naturally oriented left to right readers, I thought that a horizontal orientation was a better choice, and less distracting. The guiding principle for me needed to be impactful, but not distracting. I wanted to reduce cognitive load wherever possible. This principle also informed my color choice. As I was moving towards a “rank” theme, I wanted to go with a traditional army color. I experimented with various camouflage patterns but found them too distracting for my purposes. I also tried olive drab, and army green, but they didn’t seem to engage the eye as well as the green I eventually settled on, which was sort of mid way between the two. Being that the eye is most sensitive to shades of green, I thought this was a good overall choice, both thematically and physiologically. I considered using chevrons to indicate and reinforce the rank of the operations, but decided on gold stars, as I felt that students would be much more familiar with the idea of stars being used to rank or rate various things.

I experimented with various fonts, but made the decision quite quickly, and settled on a bold, very low-complexity font. I felt the block letters were straightforward and complemented the overall theme. After a few attempts with 3D effects, I found them to be just a distraction, with no real educational purpose, so I discarded the idea. The final element was the caption. I wanted it to rhyme and be short. I also wanted to have it reinforce the idea of tackling the operations in the correct order, with elements of the same “rank” being dealt with in left to right fashion. I felt this also tied back into my earlier choice to orient the letters left to right.

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Week 10 Video Edit.

I took a fair dealing section of Tom Stoppard’s film “Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are dead” for use in an activity related to the “game of questions” in the video.
I use it as an introduction / hook for a lesson on dialogue in creative writing. We also usually discuss the unfamiliar vocabulary words (e.g. rhetorical and non sequitur.)
In preparing the video clip, I wanted to give Shotcut a try. I had Previously used VSDC to do some basic editing, however I find Shotcut somewhat more intuitive for clipping out small sections.

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Assignment #2 Reflections

Learning Objective: Create a “video poem” using suitable images, text and music.

Link to curriculum: With this activity, I am asking the students to demonstrate their facility with combing different “texts”: pictures, music and words, to create a meaningful piece. The combination of different “texts” is an eighth-grade curricular competency in the BC curriculum.

Pedagogical approach: For this activity, I provide written instructions, and criteria as to the final piece to be produced, and I will include a video tutorial to demonstrate how Microsoft Photos could be used to produce a suitable piece. Understanding that grade eight students vary in their familiarity with various applications that could be used to create the final product, I would allow for the students to use other applications, so long as the finished piece met the overall criteria.

I chose this activity because I wanted the students to gain familiarity with how the use of multimedia could expand or add meaning to a text. Taking a cue from Mayer’s cognitive theories, I hope to help the students understand the learning impact of including both image, sound and text in an artistic piece, in this case, a poem they have previously written. Drawing from Carter, I chose the narrated video as my instructional piece, and tried to design it along his guidelines for personal narrative format. I wanted the video instructions to be conversational in tone, and to use voice to highlight certain key concepts as they were being demonstrated on the screen. Overall however, I think Campbell was the inspiration for the activity, I wanted to take the thought from Alan Kay that “a computer is an instrument whose music is ideas” and run with it. Campbell’s musings on “awakening the digital imagination” struck me as something I really wanted to try and incorporate in my technology augmented lessons.

Campbell, W, Gardner. “The Road to Digital Citizenship III: Awakening the Digital Imagination.” Gardner Writes. January 24, 2013. Accessed March 26, 2019.

Carter, Curtis. “Instructional Audio Guidelines: Four Design Principles to Consider for Every Instructional Audio Design Effort.” TechTrends: Linking Research & Practice to Improve Learning 56, no. 6 (November 2012): 54–58.

Mayer, R. E. (2002), Cognitive Theory and the Design of Multimedia Instruction: An Example of the Two‐Way Street Between Cognition and Instruction. New Directions for Teaching and Learning, 2002: 55-71.

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Assignment #2 Multimedia Activity

Student Activity – Create a video poem.

Use Microsoft Photos, or another application to produce a short video incorporating images, text and music. I have provided  a video tutorial on how to use Microsoft Photos to create your video poem. If you choose to use an alternate program (e.g. iMovie, Shotcut) you should ensure you feel comfortable enough with your chosen program to meet all the criteria.

Length – 30 seconds minimum, 2 minutes maximum running time.
Images – At least 5 images, that compliment your chosen poem.
Music – Music that compliments your poem.
Text – An original poem, minimum eight lines, incorporated into the video.
Other – Ensure music, word choice and images are school appropriate.
Format – MPEG4 (.mp4) is preferred. For other files types, ask instructor.

Below, I have included a short tutorial for using Microsoft Photos to create a video poem. Also please check out the links to a few example video poems, as well as tutorials on how to use a few other video production programs, you may wish to explore.

Microsoft Photos tutorial (two parts.)

Shotcut tutorial
iMovie tutorial

Video Poem Examples
“Beware of DOG”
“Sympathies of War; A Postscript”

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EDDL 5131 Assignment #1

Using the right mouse button to edit in Microsoft Word.








For my students in grade eight, I am finding that they have a great deal of experience with the standard tablet / smartphone “gestures” (e.g. pinch and zoom, touchscreen inputs.) However, they often lacked familiarity with how utilize two (or more) buttons on a mouse.  The savviest of my mouse using students were unsurprisingly, PC gamers. Often, the gamers would be very familiar with intermediate to advanced mouse and keyboard concepts, able to use mice with a multitude of buttons, and even set up macros (pre-arranged input sequences) to help them in their games. At the same time, it was a constant battle to get them to edit their written work before submission. “Run spell check!” was simply not sufficient. Realizing that for my students, likely the vast majority of their computer usage was with touchscreen technology, I wanted to get them familiar using a mouse with basic office applications. It was also a good fit for the technology we had available at our school.  Laptops were available for writing activities, and most importantly the student print center, located in our Learning Commons, was based off desktop machines, with two button mice.

My media choices for the lesson were chosen to compliment each other, and I tried to scaffold from a still image, to a simple animation, and then into a video tutorial. Drawing heavily from Mayer’s work, I wanted to give particular focus on Signaling, Spatial, and Temporal contiguity.
In placement, I thought to move from left to right with the two “smaller” media pieces; my image and my animation. These would hopefully help the student understand the basic physical process of the “right click” before the video instructed them on its use in Word document editing. The video piece was designed to be a narrated screen capture of my doing a few example edits using the technique. In my first few “run-throughs” I tended to wander down rabbit trails, discussing interesting, but somewhat extraneous information. In my finished piece, I believe I was able to communicate the main skill being taught, while still communicating that one could easily go more in depth with the basic skill, if one desired.

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Week 7

One of the more effective pieces of digital storytelling I’ve used in the classroom.
I’m sure many of us have seen it, however I wanted to include it for any that have not.
I think the most interesting part to me, was the reflection piece one can pursue after the engagement.
A piece about inclusion, created in such a way as to be an inclusive digital work.

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Audio Activities

For these activities, I was looking for resources to support my students as they explore iambic pentameter in Romeo and Juliet.
As they are already preparing their dramatic readings of “the balcony scene.” I thought I would give them a couple of samples to see how the “stressed text” can be spoken.
I recorded my own voice for one example, and edited a small piece of a professional piece for comparison.

I’m just getting over a cold, so having to listen to my voice my be more trying than usual.


Ex. 1

Ex. 2

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Week 4 Thumbnail

I usually begin my grade eight year with a unit on alterity.
I tend to use resources and media from the Komagata Maru incident, and the Japanese internment.

Here is a thumbnail linked to a larger photo of men on the Komagata Maru.




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I thought I would make two graphics to communicate the most oft-repeated information in my classroom.
In a class of ELL learners, poor attention spans and selective hearing, I post anything of import in prominent places on the whiteboard.
Print, laminate and toss some magnetic tape on the back of these, and find one of the most common questions answered with precious little increase to cognitive load.

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Week 3 – Activity 1

For this exercise, I took a photo of a European map c. 1490, and cropped it to focus in on Italy.
For an upcoming unit on the Renaissance, I’m going to create a Sway for my class, and wanted a map image that focused on the Italian city states.










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