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Are you a Teacher? Love Ted? Check out Ted-Ed!

Written by eLearnGuy. Posted in Tech in the Classroom


Like many of you, I am been a big fan of TED: Ideas Worth Spreading and the energetic and appealing short format lectures they use to stimulate our minds and teach us about the work of some of the most innovative and forward thinking people on the planet. On EnglishCentral, one of the interactive English language learning software platforms I helped to develop, the TED videos are consistently among the most popular videos both among my students as well as among users around the world. But how can this interactive approach to working with authentic media be done by the average, overworked, underpaid (and under-appreciated!) teacher? TED-ED seems a promising answer…

History for Music Lovers?….

Written by eLearnGuy. Posted in Music in the Classroom, Tech in the Classroom

The French Revolution with Lady Gaga

For me, one of the highlights of the 2011 AACE eLearn Conference in Hawaii was a presentation by Amy Burvall, ostensibly about her passionate interest in promoting Global education, but the take away for most in the audience was the demonstration and explanation of music videos from her amazing collaboration with Herb Mahelona, designed to teach to teach history and literature through music…

It’s that time of year – cool attendance software for your iPad

Written by eLearnGuy. Posted in Tech in the Classroom


Though I have had fairly good success in past years with a computer attendance/grading program  called GradeKeeper (www.gradekeeper.com), I was always a little disappointed by the old fashioned (and non-modifiable) Excel-style UI. Furthermore, with hundreds of students each year, and a 50 year-old brain that remembers less and less each year, I was in the market for a new program that (1) would allow me to take advantage of the iPad’s camera to add pictures of the students next to their names, and (2) would have a more flexible, more graphic interface to make the menial tasks of attendance and grade keeping a bit less tedious. So far, the iPad app “TeacherPal” (http://www.teacherpal.net/) has been very impressive. Each new class you set up takes just seconds and appears on what looks like a bookshelf, and adding students is similarly easy, taking less than a minute to have them add their name, student number, email and photo. The program also allows you to easily move students around so that the the seating order is exactly as as you see it, and allows you to make students present/absent/late with the touch of a button, easily add comments on in class behavior on the fly, and add/track grades with a very nice, clean and easy to use interface. The number of useful iPad apps like this are growing so quickly that I find myself using my iPad more than my MacBook Air!

For all you Phoneticians out there…

Written by eLearnGuy. Posted in Vocabulary Software

 A very cool (and free!) tool a friend told me about that automatically generates phonetic transcriptions of English words using the well known IPA symbols. I do a lot of dictionary database development and this tool looks like something that will save me a lot of time!

Web address for the tool is:  (http://project-modelino.com/english-phonetic-transcription-converter.php?site_language=english)

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