Podio for collaboration

Podio for collaboration

Podio is a project management and collaboration tool built for business but with uses within education. It is a tool I use almost all the time and one I highly recommend. The high level of complexity may take a little time to get used to but it is well worth the effort. Podio in Education Introduction Podio is a tool for collaborating on projects. Multiple-users are supported through shared ‘workspaces’ It works around a flexible web-database model that allows you to create your own ‘apps’ with just a few clicks. Data can be reported on or imported exported to other programmes and applications Links to other collaborative tools such as Google Drive and Evernote. What skills will I need? Basic skills with using a web-browser Some basic understanding of the functioning of databases might be useful but not essential. The ability to copy and paste links and to upload files The ability to manage calendars on google drive. What resources will I need? An email account to register – Google drive is best because you can link it to Podio and upload/download via drive. A working internet connection A little bit of patience to work through the features so that you can use it to its full potential. Advantages of using it for collaboration in teaching Flexible with the ability to track lots of detail Integrated chat between users Tasks can be allocated to users/students Comments can be made to just about anything Dis-advantages of using it for collaboration in teaching Can be quite complex if you get into it Development time for more complex projects can be quite...
Kahoot – Quizzes for interactivity

Kahoot – Quizzes for interactivity

After using Kahoot a few times in lessons I thought I would share a little about the lessons and the reasons behind using the tool but first here is a video review. Mini - Action Research plan Kahoot Some of you may already know I work with young adults with learning difficulties and they often struggle with retention information and with motivation to write down idea’s and descriptions of tools, skills and activities they have been working on. The students come from a wide range of backgrounds and are all resident at our residential college here in Sussex U.K Having a group of students on a 2 year course based around working outdoors isn’t always easy, especially in the winter and whilst we often save up the written work the students are required to do for rainy days I often find they struggle with ‘contextualizing’ the questions and descriptions they write or ask each other when not in the moment of the activity or skill they are doing or using. Prompted by another rainy morning where working outside was not possible I decided to have a stab at using Kahoot. I quickly set up a simple test quiz to introduce to the students and familiarize myself with the tool. I tested it to make sure it was working and checked and installed the apps required on the mobile devices. When the students arrived at the start of the session I explained to them what we were going to do and my expectations of them. I explained that we would try a test quiz I had set up first and then...
Creating Multi-Lingual Sites

Creating Multi-Lingual Sites

Why we create multi-lingual sites using Google Translate. There are 3 main approaches to creating a multi-lingual site: using multiple copies of pages which are translated into different languages and then added to site and changed via links of some kind, or a script. copies of the site in a different language on a sub-domain which you go to via link or script. The disadvantage with this approach is that every time you change content you have to update and translate all the pages that have been changed. Our approach is by using managed Google translate functionality. Using managed Google translate functionality you can use the Google translate engine to translate your content and then manage and modify these translations within the Google translate app. It ends up creating a faster, more responsive website, which can still be translated properly, rather than in ‘Googlish’. While you still have to manage the translations, it is within the Google Translate Management suite, not your site. Remember the other 2 approaches require a copy of each page in each language within your website and then having the ability to keep track and manage these and the changes within whatever system your site has been built, leading to a ‘page heavy’ system where content is triplicated, or more depending on the number of languages you use. As a solution to making a multilingual site this seems to be a much more pragmatic approach which give the end user simple to manage control over the translations and also allows for visitors to the site to suggest translations should this be appropriate. You have management of the content on a word to word...

Access and Podio for managing projects

As a small business trying to find suitable project management software can be a bit of a nightmare. Often, appealing project management software that looks to be perfect is far too pricey for a small business or start-up to be able to foot the bill. Most online offerings now come with a freemium pricing structure. In this case even for a small business the free versions  mostly doesn’t have the features you require and the premium offerings run at around $40.00 a month on average. For this reason I have been looking into Access, Podio and Filemaker Advanced as ways of getting some of the benefits. So far have spent a lot of time working on/with both Access and Podio and it seems neither is perfect. I’ll try and outline the pro’s and con’s of both below. I apologise in advance to those lovers of Filemaker out there. My review is based soley on trying it for a weekend and realising the limitations presented to a ‘noob’. I imagine were you to spend development time on it that it would be a very useful tool. Desktop based solutions Access  (Desktop Database) - Most people know what MS Access is so I won’t go into detail except to outline the key feature which is the ability to do complex relational reports queries it really the better solution apart from 2 major hurdles. 1 is development time. It just isn’t as straight forward as taking a template and tweaking it. You really need to invest some development time in making it do what you want rather than making do with what the...