My #ISTE2015 Animated GIF Day

Jun 29, 2015 by

For many years I protested that I had no clear need to attend the annual International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) Conference. From the social media streams and vendor receptions, it has the appearance of an ostentatious event focused on selling the latest and greatest gadgets, apps, and technology solutions to educators. Many of my colleagues and educator friends have protested, “but Ben, the connections?! How can you be missing out?” Truth be told, I’ve been intentional about the individuals that I’ve networked with; I’ve prioritized developing relationships with educators that I have the opportunity to collaborate with face-to-face at state-level or regional events. Many in the ISTE crowds would likely see my actions, and choice not to attend in previous years, as shortsighted, professionally unsound, and otherwise snobbish of me. All of that may be true. Regardless, I didn’t want to attend this major event until I had something to offer to...

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Nervous About Video Projects?

Mar 4, 2015 by

I have no problem putting myself in front of a camera and acting, performing, “hamming it up”, or delivering other recorded performance. It seems many Millennials are comfortable being YouTubers as well, putting themselves in front of the camera for school work, personal projects, or just sharing thoughts. However, I’ve also noticed that a large number of students and teachers can become quite shy when asked to get in front of a camera and perform. The number of students that are uncomfortable with it dwindles each year, but many teachers are still firmly in the “don’t put me on camera” camp. I’ve tried a few tricks to get them more comfortable when recording video; filming some “ice breaker” questions for interviews, so by the time we get to the good stuff the camera is already rolling and they’ve forgotten about it is one of my favorite tricks. I’ve also had...

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Ever Experience a Monday on a Wednesday?

Feb 25, 2015 by

This animated GIF brought to you courtesy of phhhoto. It’s been an interesting new social space/app for creating and sharing animated GIFs. There’s a lot of really creative art there, and I hope the community that continues to embrace it keeps it classy. I’ve seen a lot of other animated GIF apps come and go, permanently sidelined to the “not school friendly” portion of apps and social spaces I explore thanks to the average teenager doing what average teenagers do best….be obnoxious. Not that there’s anything wrong with that…we were all teenagers once. Update: Nevermind, it looks as though they’re aiming to be “the perfect party app”….so much for a productive school...

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Slow Down….Catch Your Breath

Feb 21, 2015 by

How do you take the time to slow down, and catch your breath in the middle of a busy school year? Do you carve out your own “creative time?” Do you blog? Do you relax by the fire with a mug of something warm and a good book? Do you follow a sports team religiously? Do you take time to play outside with your kids every day? I create short digital vignettes. Small moments of life captured through images and videos that often don’t have much value to others, but bring me a sense of calm. I have DS106 to thank for that. Recently, I’ve been using the slow motion capture on my phone a lot (yes, cheesy, pedantic and literal of me, I know). It forces me to step back and try to find something peaceful, calm, and serene to focus on for a few moments each day. I don’t...

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Happy ThanksGIFing

Nov 25, 2014 by

I’ve been known to GIF my day on special occasions. Alan Levine even created an honorary #ds106 assignment in my name for the practice. And in honor of the the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday here in the United States, I thought I’d take a day to share what I’m grateful for using the one of the media formats I’m most thankful for; the animated GIF! I’ll be revisiting this post through the day with updates, so stay tuned I’m thankful for a good deal of people in my life, and I could easily fill several posts of those that have helped shape who I am. There may be a post or two along those lines in the coming months, but in the spirit of finding small moments of thanks throughout my day, I’ll let my son represent the close loved ones in my life. I’m thankful for the highly skilled and conscientious...

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