Author Archive

September 26, 2008

National Keep Kids Creative Week

September 21st – 27th is “National Keep Kids Creative Week”. The holiday was dreamed up by illustrator and author Bruce Van Patter to restore children’s innate ability to “think outside the box.”
Bruce became worried about the growing number of children “vegging out” in front of the “rot box” (television) and decided to put together a list of resources and essays that teachers and parents can use to help promote and maintain creative thinking.
Is it just a coincidence that the Adobe CS4 Creative release coincided with National Keep Kids Creative Week? You decide…

12:54 PM Permalink
September 17, 2008

Educational Grant Opportunities

Waiting in my inbox this morning was an email from the good people over at LEGO education. They sent a list of technology related grant opportunities that can be used to fund software and hardware for the classroom. A few of the opportunities specifically target web, video, and multimedia projects.

Enhancing Education Through Technology (Ed-Tech)
The program’s primary goal is to involve student academic achievement through the use of technology in elementary and secondary schools.

Allstate Foundation
The Allstate Foundation supports national and local programs that fit within any of several focus areas: safe and vital communities, economic empowerment, tolerance, inclusion, and diversity.

Heineman Foundation
Heineman programs enable youth to think, create and communicate effectively.

Best Buy Awards
Schools that implement interactive technology and effectively inspire children are prime candidates to earn these financial awards.

Time Warner Cable
Teachers who develop creative ways to use technology (Web, video, computers) to further students’ learning experiences are eligible.

6:42 AM Permalink
September 15, 2008

Adobe Design Achievement Awards

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See the inspiring and creative work of college and university students who captured top honors in graphic design, photography, film, illustration, animation, and other categories.
View winners…
In my neck of the woods…three bright and creative high school students from Gregory-Portland High School are the Best-of-Best winners of the 2008 Adobe School Innovation Awards. They developed a “meaningful documentary about the scarring of seagrass and the effects on the local estuaries in the Coastal Bend area of Texas.” Check out their entry here.
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8:47 AM Permalink
September 9, 2008

A Vision of K-12 Students Today

I thought this short video was well made.

“This project was created to inspire teachers to use technology in engaging ways to help students develop higher level thinking skills. Equally important, it serves to motivate district level leaders to provide teachers with the tools and training to do so. “

2:32 PM Permalink
September 4, 2008

Do You Believe?

The start of a new school year is always hectic, challenging, and exciting. Student speaker, Dalton Sherman, delivers a pep talk to Dallas ISD staff to kick off their 2008 academic year. Could this kid one day run for president of the free world?
Alternate URL if the below YouTube movie is blocked.

6:25 AM Permalink
August 28, 2008

Learn How to Make a 32 Second Video

Johnny Encore teaches you how to make a video “thus living the life of a rock-and-roll legend” in this highly entertaing video tutorial series…brought to you by Adobe TV.

1:20 PM Permalink
August 19, 2008

Electronic portfolios, digital assessment, and lesson planning with Adobe Acrobat

Today I received the August 2008, Volume 9 edition of the Adobe Education Campus e-newsletter (delivered via email). The newsletter contained links to some great instructional resources, including a link to a handful of resources for creating rich PDF student portfolios.
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Topics include:

  • Creating electronic portfolios with Adobe Acrobat
  • Digital assessment with Adobe Acrobat
  • Generating lesson plans with Adobe Acrobat

Each topic includes nicely written directions with plenty of screen shots.
Resource Link

11:11 AM Permalink
August 1, 2008

A Pre-Production Gem

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I have always had a tuff time with teaching the pre-production phase of a media project, and let’s face it; there is a “whole lot more” that goes into creating a quality film project than shooting and editing video. Usually that “whole lot more” is found on the planning side of the project: writing the screenplay, creating the storyboard, arranging and organizing characters, and scheduling the shoot. Not the most glamorous parts of the project, but very important elements of the story telling process.
The problem I face is that students are chomping at the bit to get their hands on technology. They want to get their hands wrapped around a camera and start filming. They want to jump into Adobe Premiere and start editing. They want to use technology from project start-to-finish! I had to find a technology based pre-production tool that not only engaged students but also followed industry formatting and submission standards…and it had to be cheap (I’d rather spend money on the fun stuff).
I recently stumbled on a free pre-production utility which will certainly find its way to the top of my “bag of tricks.” Celtx is packed with goodies that will infuse new life into student pre-production planning. It offers tools for film, audio-visual, theatre, audio play (podcast?), storyboarding, and comic books. It also includes online collaboration tools, a great blog, and a handful of quick start tutorial videos. Perhaps I can even persuade the creative writing and literacy teachers to give it a spin.
Ok, I admit, I’m not ready to completely abandon the good ‘ol pencil and paper, but Celtx is pretty darn slick!
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8:05 AM Permalink
July 22, 2008

Holly Cow Batman! That is Cool!

John Nack, Photoshop Guru, super blogger and Senior product manager received a whole heap of “WOWs!” as he presented on some up-and-coming goodies from Adobe. If you don’t watch his blog, you should – http://blogs.adobe.com/jnack/
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3:51 PM Permalink

I’ve Become a Hugger

Peter Isaacson, VP of Education for Adobe Inc., helped kick off the 2008 Adobe Education Leader Institute. He delivered a fun welcoming to this year’s gathering and … he likes to hug (AEL inside joke).
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3:46 PM Permalink