App of the Week: 39 New Apps in our Embed the Web Library: Part 3

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In this weekly blog, our own Emily Jeanes gives readers the lowdown on web apps that educators can use inside Haiku Learning. Emily is the very first Haiku Learning Sales Engineer. Edtech ninja, sci-fi writer, and proud transfer from our award-winning Client Services team, she brings with her a passion for researching, playing with and integrating awesome educational tools into Haiku Learning. Like Haiku Learning, she likes to think she plays well with others.

Last month we announced that we added 39 new apps to our Embed the Web Library. I started with highlighting our top 10 favorites. Subscribers asked for more, so I did a follow up post on another 10, in alphabetical order. And now, I've written up summaries on another 10 for you!

10 New Apps in our Embed the Web Library

  • Project Muse: The Project MUSE search widget allows speedy access to MUSE journals and book content. Try searching MUSE for digital humanities and social science content, designed for the academic community.
  • ProProfs Brain Games: Embed free brain-training Puzzle Games created by ProProfs including Word Searches, Crosswords, Chess, Logic Puzzles and much more.
  • ProQuest: For maps, SIRS Discoverer and Knowledge Search, and eLibrary searches, check out ProQuests HTML Search Widgets.
  • Sched.org: Plan and schedule events, conferences, personal schedules and meetings. Then display them in a Sched.org widget.
  • Scoop.it: Embed any Scoop from a Scoop.it board! Scoop.it allows anyone to curate boards of content based on any topic. Share your thoughts and connect with other Scoopers with similar interests.
  • Shutterfly: Create custom photo albums by uploading photos to your Shutterfly account. Then, just "share" your Shutterfly book and create a custom embed code to display in your class.
  • Sophia.org: For free tutorials, lessons, learning paths, flipped classroom content, and other curated content, Sophia Pathways offers quick-link widgets on any subject from Algebra to Zoology.
  • SpicyNodes: SpicyNodes helps visualize online information like text, links and photos into linked "nodes." From creative brainstorming to presentations, from websites to mind-mapping exercises, there's a lot to check out. It's spicy!
  • Sploder: Students create their own video games with Sploder! Create platformer games, physics puzzles, retro arcade games, and more for free, and then embed them in your class.
  • Straw Poll: Want a quick Poll? You could use a Haiku Learning Poll. Want an even quicker, simpler poll, that lives on the web and can be embedded anywhere? Try Straw Poll!

Keep an eye out for more updates like this on all of the new goodies in our Embed the Web Library!

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Learn How to Use Backward Planning for Standards-Based Grading: Free Planner!

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Justin Goff is a Haiku Learning Community Specialist, and our in-house assessment expert here at Haiku Learning. Before joining the Haiku Learning team, Justin taught upper-school English at international schools in Korea and Japan. He’s a big fan of standards-based assessment practices and loves that Haiku Learning provides the right tools for teachers to use sophisticated approaches to grading and assessment.

Backward design + standards-based grading = perfect together

Backward design and Standards-Based Grading (SBG) aren’t technically the same thing.

When used in tandem, though, backward planning and SBG go so well together that it’s tough to imagine using them separately.

  • Your standards are the learning goals you’re trying to meet.
  • Backward design helps you figure out how to meet those goals effectively.
  • And SBG tells you how far students have to go in order to meet those learning goals.

A free class planner for you

Our SBG Class Planner for Teachers is intended to help you do just this, whether or not you’re using SBG in Haiku Learning.

This class planner will help you:

  • Specify the central question of your class.
  • Identify the learning goals/standards students need to meet to understand the central question.
  • Plan assessments that will measure students’ progress towards those goals.
  • Plan units that prepare students for success on those assessments.

Have other lesson planning tools you love? Head on over to the Community Forum to let us know!

Want to dig further into SBG?

If you'd like to learn more about SBG, read our Intro Guide on the topic. You can also read some of my other posts on the topic:

Don't miss any more of Justin's posts on assessment! Subscribe to the Haiku Learning blog to keep up with all the latest from Haiku Learning.

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App of the Week: 39 New Apps in our Embed the Web Library: Part 2

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In this weekly blog, our own Emily Jeanes gives readers the lowdown on web apps that educators can use inside Haiku Learning. Emily is the very first Haiku Learning Sales Engineer. Edtech ninja, sci-fi writer, and proud transfer from our award-winning Client Services team, she brings with her a passion for researching, playing with and integrating awesome educational tools into Haiku Learning. Like Haiku Learning, she likes to think she plays well with others.

A couple weeks ago we posted that we added 39 new apps to our Embed the Web library. We highlighted 10 of them, but people asked for more info about the rest. Here's another 10 for you!

10 New Apps in our Embed the Web Library

  • Draggo: Organize all of your online bookmarks in groups by category, topic, subject area, or anything you'd like! Then, embed Draggo's bookmark widgets to display them all in one place.
  • Ensemble Video: Looking for a cloud-hosted video platform to upload all of your files, then access them via handy embed codes? Ensemble Video can make that happen.
  • Explee: Explee "allows you to create powerful and efficient animated video." With a full library of sketch-book like graphics and readily available sounds and effects, you can then embed those videos into your class!
  • FEMA: From fire safety and disaster recovery assistance to severe weather alerts, embed any Federal Emergency Management Agency video in your class to keep your students prepared...for anything!
  • Google Groups: Already have some Google Groups set up? Want to keep the conversation going in Haiku Learning? Embed your Google Group forum right into your class!
  • HTML Commentbox: HTML Commentbox enables comments anywhere, at any time. Embed the Comment box for students to submit and view comments anywhere in your class.
  • Infogr.am: More than just spiffy, modern infographics, Infogr.am also allows anyone to connect a live data source (or not!) to their data visualizations.
  • LucidChart: LucidChart is a diagramming tool built right in your browser, great for mind-mapping, timelines, flowcharts, venn diagrams, or charts of any other kind or complexity. LucidChart live-updates for instant collaboration on a project!
  • Office Mix: Office Mix takes PowerPoint to a whole new level. Add inking, video, audio, screen sharing, and even interactive quiz questions to your deck, then embed it live into your class or WikiProject! Read my full post on this one last week!
  • PalTalk: PalTalk helps you build and manage your own chat room, with options for text and video chat available! Embed your custom chat room into your class to allow for synchronous communication at any time.

Keep an eye out for more updates like this on all of the new goodies in our Embed the Web Library!

Don't miss Emily's next app review! Subscribe to the Haiku Learning blog to keep up with all the latest from Haiku Learning.

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EdTech Weekly News Roundup - June 19, 2015

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Being an educator means you probably have very little time to read the news during the week. Here are some interesting edtech articles from this past week that you might find useful.

"Inspired By Serial, Teens Create Podcasts as a Final Exam” – MindShift

Rather than do a traditional 2-hour end of year final exam, this teacher assigned podcasts that combined the skills they learned from studying the uber popular Serial podcast, from the producers of This American Life. In order to make it a comprehensive final on the literature they studied that year, there was a unique twist to the assignment. Read about the journey they took for this unique, collaborative assignment.

"6 Ways Videoconferencing is Expanding the Classroom” – THE Journal

From virtual field trips to watching a live knee replacement operation (yes, you heard right), video conferencing has evolved beyond just seeing other people in far away places when you talk to them. Check out some of these unique applications.

"Mystery Skype Calls Connect Your Classroom to the World” – eSchoolNews

From the article: "Mystery Skype is an educational game, invented by teachers, played by two classrooms on Skype. The aim of the game is to guess the location of the other classroom by asking each other questions. It’s suitable for all age groups and can be used to teach subjects like geography, history, languages, mathematics, and science.” The article offers 3 different ways to play the game. Check it out!

"Brain Food: 20+ Summer Opportunities for Educators and Students” – edSurge

Summer slide isn’t just for students! Edsurge has compiled a bunch of opportunity for teachers to keep up on their own professional development, as well as ideas for student enrichment. There's something for everyone here, from social media know-how to tablet trainings, from in-person workshops to online learning.

"A Vision For Teacher Training At MIT: West Point Meets Bell Labs” – NPR

The former president of Columbia University’s Teachers College has partnered with MIT to create a new teacher training program, funded by $30 million from the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation. The focus will be on analyzing what’s most effective in classrooms by having researchers working side by side with future educators. There's an audio version of the story if you prefer that format.

Subscribe to the Haiku Learning blog to keep up with other news and stories like this from Haiku Learning.

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App of the Week: Office Mix

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In this weekly blog, our own Emily Jeanes gives readers the lowdown on web apps that educators can use inside Haiku Learning. Emily is the very first Haiku Learning Sales Engineer. Edtech ninja, sci-fi writer, and proud transfer from our award-winning Client Services team, she brings with her a passion for researching, playing with and integrating awesome educational tools into Haiku Learning. Like Haiku Learning, she likes to think she plays well with others.

What is Office Mix?

From their site: Office Mix gives you superpowers as "a free add-in for PowerPoint 2013. It is a powerful tool that makes authoring and sharing of online lessons/presentations simple."

With the ability to add inking, audio and video annotations, screensharing, and even auto-graded quiz questions, Office Mix kicks PowerPoint up several hefty notches.

In Haiku Learning: Teachers can use LTI to connect to Office Mix via SSO, then paste in any Office Mix URL, search through their own decks, or the gallery of public mixes. Good news for everyone, though: Office Mix also works through Embed the Web!

In either case, the deck embeds beautifully, with SSL support, responsive design, all of your annotations right in your Embed the Web content block or LTI Activity, and even an option to switch between presentation and the table of contents view.

An Office Mix interactive quiz element
Here's an Office Mix interactive quiz element. Credit: Microsoft

Quick Facts

What Office Mix Looks Like in Haiku Learning
Here's what Office Mix looks like in Haiku Learning. Credit: Microsoft

How do I get the embed code?

When viewing any Office Mix, select the Share option to open more settings, then Embed. From there, just copy the embed code, and you're ready to add it to a new Embed the Web content block. Don't worry too much about which size to choose. The embed is awesome, and it will automatically adjust to fit the size of your content block.

How to embed Office Mix into Haiku Learning
Where to get the embed code for Office Mix. Credit: Microsoft

Why should I try it?

With so many wonderful presentation tools out there (I'm looking at you Haiku Deck, Voicethread, Prezi, SlideCaptain, PechaKucha) I think it was about time for the Microsoft's PowerPoint team to pick up their game. Good news, everyone, they totally have!

As a PowerPoint add-in, Office Mix puts your deck in the cloud complete with your hyperlinks and animations, sure, but it also brings along a lot of really exciting ways to make your web presentation more interactive and alive. Inking annotations, audio and video tracks, screensharing, and no joke...interactive, auto-grading quiz questions! Then, they let you watch analytics not just on how students responded to your questions, but how long they spent on each slide, too.

Still in preview, Office Mix announced a shiny new LTI Integration today, over on their blog. And they're rocking it. I feel like a broken record sometimes, but I must be a sucker for SSL, responsive, LTI-compatible, embeddable, free awesome stuff. Aren't we all? We're really excited to see how far this add-on can go, and it looks like a lot of folks are already right on board. Be sure to check out their Gallery for some great examples!

Welcome to the web, PowerPoint! Now, if I can just get Office Mix on my Mac... Guess what? Microsoft says "It's coming, hold tight!"

Until next time, embed ALL the things!

Don't miss Emily's next app review! Subscribe to the Haiku Learning blog to keep up with all the latest from Haiku Learning.

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