Friday, October 9, 2009

Where There's a Will...

...there's a way when you are dealing with technology--at least that has been my experience. While passing through my office, Layne mentioned that the Flip videos are not working with PowerPoint. Sure enough, dragging a Flip video into PowerPoint, or even going to Insert>Movie>From File, didn't work. Help files on indicated that if a video plays in Windows Media Player, it will work in PowerPoint. Unfortunately this wasn't the case when dealing with the Flip .avi files.
Of course, that was enough to pique my curiosity. After trying several ideas with no results, I was in the middle of writing a help ticket to the Flip Product Support site, when I remembered that Flip allows videos to be posted on FaceBook & MySpace--which means a different file conversion. Ah Ha! That was my last hope...but I didn't close that help ticket yet. Sure enough, it worked. I happily exited the help request and shared my triumph with Layne. Now Layne, being the creative thinker he is, used our Interwrite Workspace to record a tutorial on this whole process. I experimented with my own tutorial and posted it on YouTube...Click Here to Watch.

A main focus of this week, however, was training teachers on the new SOCS Teacher Pages. This is a really a user-friendly template system which allowes teachers to create their own site within our Sioux City Community School's site. After my first meeting, I realized we really needed a couple graphic organizers & handouts. So I created those--which were a big help. For the most part I am very pleased with this program, with one minor objection. Once a teacher logs into Socs and clicks on My Teacher Pages, it automatically creates 27 templates that are ready to go. The problem occurs when a teacher decides to edit their profile--maybe changing their name or fixing a typo. Socs then creates a duplicate set of templates under the new change. With 54 templates available, a teacher must be very careful to choose the correct name, or the Teacher Page will not appear. And sometimes when CAREFULLY choosing the correct name, it doesn't appear. I need to contact SOCS about this, but for right now, I'm clearing them out & re-adding them as a new user. Moral of that story...carefully type in the correct user name & don't change it.
Finally, I am heading off to the ITEC conference this weekend. I am so excited about this & will post what I learn next week!