Friday, December 14, 2012

Happy Holidays and Christmas Customs in Europe

In honor of my Holiday break beginning today at exactly 12:00 noon today, I thought I'd mention a cool resource I learned about from @Larryferlazzo.

The German Embassy in London published an advent calendar that presents 27 Days of European Christmas Customs. The calendar is available in English and Deutsch. Just click any day that has passed to view a Christmas custom from various European countries, or click to open all windows if you want to spoil the fun and view them all :)

Look at December 4th for one of my new favorite Christmas events, Christmas Markets! I've gone to my fair share of them here in Switzerland this season.

Check out the advent calendar here.

Fröhliche Weihnachten & Happy Holidays!!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

iPad Apps - A few for Language & Literacy

In my job, one of my responsibilities is an iPad Pilot with a cart of 21 iPads. My mission is to get the iPads into as many classes/grade levels (middle school 6-8)/subjects as possible. In preparation, I researched and loaded apps onto the iPads in all of the subject areas that covered some core ideas or concepts. More recently I focused specifically on Literacy apps for our learning support teachers. The following are a few of the apps we are using in this area.

Create your own story by animating your selected characters while speaking. This app walks you through the story arch and each necessary step in creating your story.

Grammar Up (FreeGrammar): Free Edition
Select the parts of speech you would like to work on, begin the test, and then select the proper word to complete a sentence. At the end of the test you can choose to email your scores. We have since updated to full paid version of the app, see here.

Make as many words as you can from the letters that you are given. There are clues that will help your out, and you can reveal all words when time is up or you are done.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Keep your Mac awake with Caffeine

Caffeine... I can't do without out on any given morning, so why should my computer? I used Caffeine on my Mac computer before, but this year is the first time that I've worked off of a Mac full-time for my job. I recently remembered the app, and it has been a huge help. The concept is simple, click to give your computer some coffee to keep the screen awake, click again to remove the coffee for it to sleep or dim as normal.

=  Screen will go to sleep or dim as normal.

=  Screen will stay awake. 

If you right-click on the coffee cup, you will see more options, like activating Caffeine for a specific amount of time on your computer. 

Back to the Blogging

So I've taken quite a long break from my blog since the last time I've posted. In that time, I've moved to a different country, started a new job, learned quite a few new things, and seen some new places. See my last post for more details on why we made the move. Things are going good, and I think we're figuring it all out. We still learn new things daily (who doesn't love that?!) and have made some great friends along the way! So now that things have settled a bit I'm going to get back to the blogging. Look for some new posts very soon!