Sunday, August 24, 2008

Term 2! What did we do?

I can't believe I've just posted a comment about term 3 and haven't discussed what we did in term 2 yet. Even worse I can't even remember. Well let's see, oh yes there was Alice(programming software). It worked very well actually only 250Mb. After downloading once it was easy to pop on the USB/phone and install on the EeePC's. It ran very well too and we were able to export the finished work as a web page. I have to admit we did find the screen view a bit small though, particularly the editors area and world view window when you were building the programme (okay for viewing though). We also had to keep moving the instruction boxes about on the screen to enable us to click the 'next' instruction button. Alice comes with excellent tutorials and if you haven't given it a go yet on your EeePC it's worth a play with.

Alanpt just sent me these links via a previous post to Scratch(programming) apparently it's available for linux now (I can't wait to try this out too -I hope it works on the EeePC). Thanx Alan.


We ran Alice from the file manager rather than placing a dedicated short cut, with its own icon, on the main page, as we found out that when you upgrade the machine you lose any icons and shortcuts you have placed on the machine.
Because of this I also made the decision not to place any of the other programmes I'd trialed on my machine (audacity, kino, winff etc) on the students machines. Besides wanting to keep the machines standard because it's so much easier to reset them to factory settings, if anything goes wrong, I'm still struggling with the concept of movie making on the computer as I really want to be able to do this via the web using mobile phones not video cameras as all the kids just don't have these. Plus I have to admit I've found my 4GB machine really does make video editing hard work.

Em now what else have we been doing? Oh I know our Super Hero Fiction stories. We used Openoffice for this opendocument to write the stories and opendraw to produce the comic pages (it's amazing how creative you can get with a webcam and a paint program - you can make normal everyday students into superheros and even make them fly). Good work from the kids but could someone please tell me why we didn't use Google documents to write the main story. I know I'm still not too confident about using the internet for too many web2 programs because of our slow internet bandwidth but Googledocs doesn't take up that much bandwidth -does it, besides if I have to send and receive another email I'll scream. Not to mention the confusion between which file is the latest version when sending drafts too and from students to be corrected.

In fact we used a lot of the proprietary software on the Asus this term(must of been the novelty). A whole range of the openoffice software for our Social Studies projects and Openpresentation for our assemblies too. Well I can definitely say I've been there done that time for web2 now, roll on that fast internet connection, time to get my head firmly stuck in the clouds.

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