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  • Aaron Davis 4:28 am on December 7, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Reflection   

    What did you enjoy most about Year 7 ICT this semester and why?

    • Jess 1:36 am on December 8, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I enjoyed being able to create my own blog along with its posts and coming up with new ideas to keep people interested.

    • bngu0034 1:39 am on December 8, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I enjoyed making a blog of my own, as well as researching certain topics

    • bmin0002 1:40 am on December 8, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I enjoyed customizing the blogs because it shows that we put effort into our blogs and to give it some style so other people would like/enjoy our blogs.

    • Slifer2099 1:40 am on December 8, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I enjoyed making blogs this semester in ICT, because it showed how much effort into making blogs. It gave a cool experience in how to make podcast and to make visualizations. It taught me a lot on how to satisfy the public and to really get the brain thinking on your topic whether it was fashion to movies it taught some people something about that topic

    • bsin0005 1:41 am on December 8, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      i enjoyed writing my own blog because it showed how strongly i felt about this topic and how blogs and change a persons perspective.

    • bbar0004 4:07 am on December 8, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      learning different ways to help people see your blog!!!!!!

    • bngu0039 10:16 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      something i had fun with this semester blogging is make my blogs and how we got to chose or topic. (tyler)

      something i enjoyed this semester was just making my own blog and sharing the information about soccer. (Jason)

    • bang0006 10:19 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      during year seven ict I enjoyed being able to have freedom in what I want to post with my group.

    • bang0006 10:22 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      in ict I have enjoyed being able to talk with my group and write about what ever topic I want to
      (jerrymiah) 7B

    • bjad0003 10:32 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I enjoyed having a blog with others and writing about something we enjoy.

    • bgre0004 10:37 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I enjoyed doing blogs in year 7, because it let you put your own opinion out there. And how to use visualizations to communicate with the readers. I also like how we learnt to use different skills and how to modify our blogs.

    • bgoe0001 10:43 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I enjoyed adding to my blog. I also enjoyed making my Language Map.

    • bher0001 10:45 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I enjoyed being able to chose your topic and work with friends on a individual topic, I also liked working on it for a while and connecting with your blog

    • Animal luvr 10:45 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I enjoyed doing blogs because I got to research different animals and I learnt so many new things that I did not know about. It was also good that I got to share information about animals with others.

    • bren0002 10:47 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I enjoyed getting to chose the topic that we wanted to do and that we got to work with our friends on the topic.

    • bvo0009 10:48 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      in ICT I really liked how I got to write what ever I want and share it with everyone. I like this because I get to share my opinions.

    • bris0005 11:10 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      i didn’t like anything about year 7 ICT because it was boring

    • Melrose 11:17 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I enjoyed having free blogging time and being able to write about something that interests me.

    • unic0rns-taking-0ver 11:18 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I enjoyed the fact that we were able to chose our topics, and customize our blogs, the way we liked. I also like free blogging time because we were able to structure our time productively.

    • bbes0003 11:18 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Maykah: I enjoyed being able to show off my drawings as it helped me build confidence in it as well as the ability and chance to decorate my own blog to make it more appealing.
      John: I enjoyed being able to draw and show off my drawings and viewing everyone’s blogs because it fun to see everyone’s interest

    • bogn0004 11:19 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      i enjoyed making my own blog and getting got post what i want.

    • bgil0010 11:21 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      what i really liked about ict was that we got to express ourselfs on our blogs

    • babb0003 11:21 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Something i enjoyed about ICT this year was the blogs because you can express your ideas with others who like the same topic as you. You can be creative and spread creativity with others. I also like how i can use others opinions about fashion and share it with others.

    • bgeo0005 11:23 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      i liked the visualizing tasks because we got to work in groups and express our thoughts and ideas in a creative way.

    • bcay0001 11:24 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I enjoyed being introduced something new to the very thing I always use at home, the internet. The ability for me to be able to express myself without any mistakes is quite new but became real comfortable after a few ideas and posts.

    • bris0005 11:27 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      it was boring because we didn’t learn anything

    • bkam0002 11:27 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I enjoyed communicating through the blog to year sevens and adding new ideas about fashion as well as receiving more ideas. I also enjoyed recording my reason why visualization is important and listening to other people’s explanations.

    • bwik0001 11:28 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I enjoyed being able to see other peoples blogs because I was able to know what might be their interests.

    • bmar0017 11:28 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      My favourite part of my blog was the theme because I am very interested fashion and I was able to express my thoughts and ideas through my posts, and because I worked in a group we were able to improve our design because we were able to take multiple suggestions. I also enjoyed creating visualisations because they allowed me to give more then just a post to my blog, and it let me express what my blog was about.

    • Gail 11:29 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I enjoyed collaborating with other people because I find that working by yourself is quite boring, and having multiple people working on one blog is more fun because you get to share ideas and talk about something you all like, which ours is about fashion ūüôā

    • Fahmi 11:31 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply


    • baya0001 11:34 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I liked doing blogs in year 7 because I am sharing about thing I like in the world and sharing all the different food out there. and how to use visualizations and how to post thing and I liked how we got tech how to record you voice in a fun way and I hope we can do blogs for ict next year.

    • bbar0004 11:43 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      learning how to post and adding media into my post and also having to know how to use blogs and how they work! ūüôā

    • bdan0003 11:43 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      learning that a single topic can have so many idea and can link to other things like YouTube can link to social media and that can link to snachat or vine

    • baze0003 11:44 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I actually didnt enjoy ICT because for a semester we just did blogs and i got over it

    • bngu0030 11:44 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      i enjoy how we do different types of blogging techniques and always shows new idea

    • bvas0004 11:55 pm on December 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      My favourite part of ICT this semester was when we all got to share our ideas in google classroom and how we all got to share our ideas on one document from our laptops. ūüôā

    • Aj 12:51 am on December 10, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      in year 7ict i enjoyed the Technics of making a blog, but i lagged behind in posting posts for my blog

  • Aaron Davis 4:28 am on December 7, 2015 Permalink | Reply  

    Turning a Blog into a Book 

    Created with Google Drawings

    Created with Google Drawings

    One of the challenges that is often faced with blogs is how to save them or back them up. A solution is to turn them into a book. Jason Teitelman has written a post explaining how to use BookBlogger.

    Also, here is a recording I did unpacking it:

  • Aaron Davis 12:10 pm on December 6, 2015 Permalink | Reply  

    Wondering if having a ‘quick comment’ functionality would allow for more interaction within the class blog?

  • Aaron Davis 12:17 pm on December 2, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Visualisation   


    This is a video made to celebrate visualisation using Adobe Voice.

  • Aaron Davis 7:26 pm on November 27, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Google, Maps, Powering Up,   

    Making My Own Maps with Google Apps 

    I recently wrote about powering up blogs by adding video, audio and GIFs. Another form of content which you can add is an interactive map by embedding a Google My Map.

    Google Maps has been a staple of Google’s applications for a long time. However, something that is often overlooked is the potential of creating your own maps. In the past, the place people often went was Google Earth, using features such as Tour Builder, while more recently Maps Engine Lite offered a way of customising traditional Google Maps.

    One significant changes in rebadging Maps Engine Lite as My Maps has been to house the files within Google Drive. This has made it easier to create, collaborate and share various creations of space. You are able to easily make layers, add place marks, draw shapes and create directions. To take this to the next step, you can also import information via a spreadsheet. Uploading can be good if you have a long list of coordinates. While you can also export data from My Maps as a KML file. This can be useful if you want to add information into Google Earth.

    In addition to this, you can add content to the place marks or shapes, whether this be a description, image and video. This then comes up when you click on the marker. In addition to this, you can also change the place marker icon and colour of the shape. Therefore giving you with another layer of meaning.

    Some ideas for using Google My Maps include:

    What is good about My Maps is that it provides a different way for communicating information and telling a story. So what about you, how could you use My Maps? As always, comments welcome.

    Additional Resources

    My Maps Help – A step-by-step guide to everything associated with My Maps

    5 Easy Steps to Design the Google MyMaps Lesson of Your Dreams – A list of tips and tricks associated with using My Maps, including links to a range of examples.

    Google My Maps Р  Jim Sill provides a good introduction to the various terms and constraints associated with using My Maps.

    How to Create Custom Maps with My Maps Р  Richard Byrne has made a series of tutorials associated with creating map, importing data and sharing information

    Exploring Your World with My Maps – A short guide from Chris Betcher with ideas and activities associated with using My Maps.

  • Aaron Davis 11:14 pm on November 25, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Audio, Classeoom, Podcast   

    Google Classroom 

    This is a short introduction to Google Classroom.

  • Aaron Davis 2:48 pm on November 15, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Blog, Content, Embed, GIF, , Videos   

    Powering Up Blogs By Adding Content 

    Image created with Google Drawings

    Image created with Google Drawings

    One of the best things about a blog is the ability to add different types of content. I have written about creating images and visualisation. However, the next step in powering up is adding different content, such as video, audio and gifs.


    There are so many different options when it comes to making video for a blog. Whether it be a telling a story with images using PhotoStory, creating an animated presentation with Powtoon or simply using a camera to make a live recording.

    When it comes to adding video content to a blog, the easiest way is to simply add it via the media library. The issue with this though is that whatever blogging platform you are using, there is always a limit to how much you can store. In addition to this, there are also limits associated with the size of single files. For example, the limit with Global2 is 50mb. The solution then is to store the videos somewhere else and embed them within the blog.

    The most common platforms used in education are YouTube and Vimeo. The problem is that even with potential to have videos unlisted, there are still some that have issues with housing video within such public spaces due to privacy issues

    One alternative is to store content within Google Drive and embed this. To do this you upload the video file in question then click to pop it out. Once it is open in a separate space, you click on the options tab where you will find the embed code. Other than having more control over the¬†content, a benefit of using Google Drive is that you are able to apply restrictions as to who can and can’t view the content through the ‘share’ settings if that is a concern.

    (Another option that I have not explored is FUSE. This may well be another solution. However, I have yet to properly explore this at this stage.)


    Often we associate adding audio to a blog with creating an episodic podcast. However, the process does not always have to be that complicated. You can easily create a one off recording and add this to a post. This can be useful when it comes to musical creations or one off interviews.

    In regards to producing, Alan Levine recommends a range of applications including:

    • Levelator to even out the volume.
    • Audacity to cut-up and remove unwanted parts.

    It is also suggested that you use a proper microphone rather than the in-built microphone within a computer if recording, as this will improve the quality of the audio.

    In relation to adding to a blog, you can add and embed using sites like Soundcloud and Audio Boo. However, the easiest option is often just adding an MP3 file to the media library and inserting this. You can use a plugin to add further feeds and functionality, but this is not always needed.

    Here is an example I made in class:



    GIF created using PowerPoint and Format Factory

    GIF created using PowerPoint and Format Factory

    This image was created with Google Drawings

    This image was created with Google Drawings

    A GIF is a is a type of loop-able image that lasts for only a few seconds. It stands for graphic interchange format. Originally designed for icons, these silent images can be used for a wide range of purposes. For some they are used to tell stories, while for others to present a quick tutorial. You only have to look at platforms like Vine and Instagram to see the power and potential of GIFs (although technically speaking, neither of these platforms produce GIFs).

    Some programs that you can use to create a GIF including:

    • GIFS a website which allows you to turn just about any YouTube clip into a 15 second GIF
    • Format Factory a program which provides the means to change the format of any video file into a GIF
    • Photoshop a program which allows you to both create and edit
    • Ezgif a website which allows you to easily create and edit GIFs online

    There are more, it just depends on what device you are using and what you are trying to create.

    Overall, there are so many other different options for embedding content that helps to power up, for more details see the long list at Edublogs.

  • Aaron Davis 1:57 pm on October 19, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Comics, Concept Maps, Graphic Organisers, Infographics, Mind Maps, Sketchnoting, Timelines, Visualisations   


    Visualisation Cover defines visualisation as:

    To make visual or visible.
    To form a mental image of.
    I would add to this and suggest¬†that to ‘visualise’ is to make visible something that was not necessarily visible before. There are many ways of doing this. Some involve graphs and numbers, while others are more creative in their expression. Here then are some different types of visualisation with possible resources that you can use to create them:



    A brainstorm is about gathering spontaneous ideas around a specific topic or idea. Although there are many variations, one of the keys is to hold back judgement in order to find the limits. An example of one such variation is NoTosh’s 100 ideas in ten minutes. Some programs to support brainstorming include Answergarden, Padlet, Dotstorming, Socrative¬†and Google Apps. What is important is the ability to collaborate.


    Word Cloud


    An extension of the brainstorm, the word or tag cloud involves visualising text as a cloud. Usually one word at the time, the size of the text is dictated by the amount of times it is represented. Word clouds can also be used to measure the frequency of words in a text. Some programs used to create word clouds include Wordle, Word It Out, Tagxedo and ABCya.

    Screenshot 2015-10-20 at 12.20.29 AM

    Mind Map


    Beginning with a central idea, mind maps involve adding branches and keywords to build a deeper understanding. Colours and images are used to convey more meaning. Although they can be drawn, there are also a range of programs you can use to create mind maps, including, Freemind and Google Drawings.


    Concept Map


    Like the mind map, the purpose of a concept map is to present knowledge. However, the structure is not so rigid. Instead, there is a free form which can lend itself to more complexity. Although the same applications used to create a mind map can be used to make a concept map, some additions include XMind and CMap.




    Flowcharts are a means for visualising processes and workflows. They use a range of shapes, each with a different purpose. A prime example is the representation of algorithms, an essential element of the new Digital Technologies curriculum. Some programs to support brainstorming include Lucidchart, Google Drawings, Gliffy and


    Graphic Organisers


    Graphic organisers involve using a visual aid to develop knowledge and understanding. There are many different types of organisers, including relational (fishbone), classifications (KWL), sequencing (ladder), compare/contrast (Venn diagram) and concept development (story web). An easy way to create graphic organiser is with these Google Drawings templates from Matt Miller.




    Sketchnoting is about helping us think deeper by mixing, matching and making links using text, image, structure and flow. Some call it visual note-taking, others doodling. For some it is a useful way of summarising different content, while for others it is a creative way to brainstorm new ideas. There are a range of resources and presentations to help with sketchnoting including Sketchnoting FOR Beginners (Silvia Rosenthal Tolisano), Brain Doodles, Sketchnoting for Beginners (Sylvia Duckworth) and How I Teach Sketchnoting (Royan Lee). I have also created a Youtube playlist of useful videos.




    A mixture of text, images and data visualisations, infographics are designed to communicate information quickly and clearly. Like sketchnotes, infographics do not necessarily have a set structure. It is however common for them to be long and skinny. This is to fit them within width of a blog. Some programs that help with making infographics include infog.ram, Canva, Piktochart and Google Drawings.




    Timelines are a means for visualising a period of time chronologically and with a consistent scale. This scale can be days, years, months, it just depends on the topic in question. There are a few applications that allow you to create digital timelines, including Dipity, Time Rime, Read Write Think, Timetoast and TimelineJS. Just note, TimelineJS requires Google Apps.

    Screenshot 2015-10-20 at 12.49.55 AM

    Comic Strips


    An interpretative visual means of presenting ideas, comic strips often lend themselves to storytelling. Some applications that support the creation of comics include Create Your Own Marvel Comic, MakeBeliefsComix, Chogger and Witty.




    Doug Belshaw suggests that, “remixing, re-appropriation and riffing off other people‚Äôs work just seems to be part of what we do as human beings.” There are many ways of mashing-up visuals. Often this involves taking something that is used in one context and re-appropriating it for another. This can include making creative maps¬†or adding commentary to an image in the creation of a meme. There are no specific programs used to create mash-ups as there are no specific mash-ups.


    • Andre 12:49 am on October 20, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      We did some hard work on our’s dident we mr davis

    • Bubbles 12:56 am on October 20, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      They look amazing

    • bbho0002 6:18 am on October 23, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      They’re great to have so you can go back and look upon them and the different visualizations you can include in your blog.

      • Mr Davis 8:06 am on October 25, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        That was the intention, to create something that you could use when you need it.

  • Aaron Davis 10:43 pm on September 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: ,   

    Creating Images for Blogs 

    One of the strengths of writing on the web is the possibility of presenting ideas and information in different forms. The most common form is visual images. For some this simply means going to Google and copying the first image found. However, these images are often copyrighted or have little connection with the original creator. One solution is to make your own. There are many different websites which make this possible


    RECITE This

    This site allows you to quickly paste in some text and then choose from twenty different templates, ranging from a mobile phone to a notebook to a framed picture.

    Pinstamatic Bass


    Created to support Pinterest, this site allows you to create an image for a range of things, such as a quote, a website or an event.

    Quozio Bass


    Like Recite This, Quozio allows you to create quotes from a range of templates depending on the length. You can also get a bookmarklet which allows you to create images from text straight from the web.

    Pinword Bass


    This site allows you to add your own image or choose from some that are provided, as well as pick from a range of templates in the creation of a visual.

    Quote Pixel Bass


    Like many of the others, this site allows you to paste in text to create an image. Where this site differs is the ability to categorise quotes, making them more easily searchable.

    Quotes Cover Bass

    Quotes Cover

    This site provides a wider range of options than most based on colour, images and fonts. It also provides several output dimensions, including wallpapers, e-card and social media headers.

    Pizap Bass


    Moving away from the quote based applications, this site allows you to create and edit images, adding filters and borders. One of the popular features is the ability to easily make memes, although Meme Generator is just as effective.

    Pic Monkey Bass

    Pic Monkey

    Similar to Pizap, this site allows you to create and edit images using a range of features, such as effects, textures and overlays. A very stylish application that is easy to use, the only limitation is that some features are premium only.

    poster_from_postermywall Bass

    Poster My Wall

    Building upon the complexity of Pizap and Pic Monkey, this site allows you to choose from a wide range of templates or simply create from scratch. It offers many variables and allows you to download the finished product for free with a watermark.

    Drawings Bass

    Google Drawings

    This application allows you to create and compile your own images. In addition to matching different fonts, Drawings can be good for incorporating shapes in the development of diagrams.

    Paper53 Bass

    By Amy Burvall


    This iPad application allows you to make digital sketches. For more ideas on sketchnoting, see Sylvia Duckworth’s presentation. In addition to the digital, you can just draw something on paper and capture it.



    A downloadable application which allows you to organise and edit your photos. Beyond the usual filters and edits, Picasa allows you create collages for your images.


    Something to be mindful of is that although most of the sites and applications do not require logins, they do however keep a copy of your creations. So if you are adding your own backgrounds you need to consider this. While if you are going to use images found online then at least adjust the advanced settings in Google to search up content that has been marked Creative Commons or use sites like Photos For Class to find appropriate content.

    So what about you? What images do you add to extend your writing? As always, I would love to know.

  • Aaron Davis 2:07 pm on September 1, 2015 Permalink | Reply  

    Turning Categories into Pages 

    Sending posts to pages other than your front page

    One of the challenges when developing a collaborative blog is how to celebrate all of the different voices and perspectives. One answer is to convert the different categories into links on the front page using custom menu. For more information, I recommend following the step-by-step guide provided by Edublogs.

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