App of the Week: Skitch

Skitch is a free app for both Apple and Android devices that allows you to annotate on images.  Within this app you can write on photos that are already in your library, take a new photo with your camera, notate on a map, mark up a webpage, take notes on a PDF, or just draw on a blank page.  I know!  That’s a lot of options for one app!


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App of the Week: Coding


Just don’t consume things. Create things.”

President Obama


The buzzword this week is “Coding”. What exactly is coding? Coding is used to create apps, computer games, and websites. Does it sound too complicated? It doesn’t have to be. It actually can be a lot of fun and children as young as five can learn how to code with easy to learn coding apps and web tools.

In celebration of Computer Education Week, December 8-14, an organization called, Hour of Code, is challenging everyone to spend just one hour learning how to create something with code. This event was kicked off at the White house, where a group of middle students from Newark, NJ showed President Obama how to code.

Ready to get started? Visit the Hour of code website to try your hand at coding. They offer a lot of free tutorials and resources to get you started.

Here are other fun web tools that you can use to create apps and games:

MITT App Inventor for Androids


Platform: Web

Cost: Free

Allows you to design and program apps for your Android devices.

*Note: You will need to download the App Inventor Companion App to run your game on your Android device.



Platform: Web

Cost: Free!

Scratch is one of the first programming languages created. Students use a visual programming language made up of bricks to design games and activities.




Platform: Web

Cost: Free!

Similar to Scratch but was built to teach programming for kids. This app features lesson plans and other tools to teach your students how to code.






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App of the Week: PowToon

PowToon is a great APP from the Chrome Web Store for both teachers and students!  As educators, use PowToon to engage students and animate difficult topics or subject matter. As a student, use PowToon to make creative presentations that come alive with music, labels, and creative graphics.

PowToon features an easy “Drag and Drop” user interface (different from Powerpoint or Prezi), with a plethora of pre-designed templates, and a variety of style libraries for you to choose from for your project.  Using the many features within PowToon allows you to create slides that can unique for your project.   When you finish creating your PowToon you can be easily export the file to Facebook or YouTube, download it to your computer, or play using the PowToon player; your creation will be an MP4 file which you can be easily embed into a website.

Here is the best part: PowToon integrates with Google Drive!  So for those of us that have a .edu email account powered by Google, we can use our ‘SchOOGLE’ account for PowToon and keep them stored on Google Drive!

PowToon is FREE!  Add PowToon to your Chrome Browser and start creating NOW!
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App of the Week: ScreenChomp

1An app for sharing ideas with a simple doodling board, markers, and one-click sharing tools. It is just – Record It. Sketch It. Share It. – to create a sharable, replay-able video that tells your story clearly.

1. Touch RECORD to capture your touch interactions and audio instructions on a plain background, or an image from your iPad camera roll.
2. SKETCH out your ideas and talk the viewer through the “how” and “why” of it all.
3. Stop and SHARE your video snack to to generate a simple and short web link you can paste anywhere. You can download your video as an MPEG-4 file. It is not necessary to have an account to manage, just post and go (perfect for schools and teachers)!
It will help students review ideas, and help teachers have more consistent interactions with each student. Teachers also have a way to re-assess and re-test a student’s understanding of specific concepts, and keep a record of those interactions through captures.


LINK: [Apple]

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App of the Week – Veescope Live

Always wanted to make your very own Green Screen Productions?  Well then Veescope is the app for you!  There are two versions of Veescope for you to choose from.  One is the free version which I used in THIS EXAMPLE which, as you can see, has the Veescope watermark.  Now if you want to remove the watermark and get some extra features it’s $4.99.

Now what makes Veescope special in the world of green screen apps.  While you are recording, Veescope actually plays what you want on your green screen!  Most of the time you can only record yourself with a green background and then add in your animations, slide shows, etc.  Then you have to just cross your fingers that you can get it all to sync up the way you want it to.  This app is available on both Google Play and the Apple App Store!



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App of the Week: iMovie

1iMovie, a movie editor lets you make movies easily, enjoy your videos and tell stories.


• Use the iMovie extension to enhance video clips right in the Photos app
• Add a video filter, animated title, and soundtrack to any clip
• Instantly save new video clips to your photo library
• Enjoy all your videos in the full-screen Video browser
• Quickly share a clip or a portion of a clip
• Mark favorite moments to easily find them later
• Choose from 14 trailer templates with stunning graphics and original scores by some of the world’s top film composers
• Customize movie studio logos, cast names, and credits
• Select the best videos and photos for your trailer with the help of animated drop zones
• Record video for your trailer right in iMovie

Price: $4.99

Link: [Apple]

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November and December Workshops Available!


Click here to Register!

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App of the Week: Pocket

How many tabs do you have open on your computer right now? If you are like most people who surf the net for articles, you click on one link and then another one and then another. You get the picture.  Sometimes you come across information or an article but you just don’t have time to read it.  Then later, when you need it, you have to start the search all over again.

There is an app that can help you. It’s called The Pocket. It allows you to store and curate articles, images and even tweets to use later on with or without Wi-Fi. You can store video but you will need Wi-Fi in order to watch it. Think of it as your personal “Pinterest”.

The Pocket:

  • It’s free
  • Works with other apps such as, Twitter, Flip board, Pulse
  • You can view your Pocket on iPhone, iPad, or Android devices
  • Saved articles are freed from clutter and advertisement.
  • Readers can adjust font sizes.
  • You can read articles without Wi-Fi connection 


pocket image



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Check Out All The New Stuff!

Have you stopped by IS&D lately?  Well, you’ll be pleased to know that we have several new toys in AA337.

  1.   Zoom Cameras – These cameras were created by an audio company giving it great sound quality.
  2. Nexus Tablets – Google’s response to the iPad, Nexus tablets are a great way to show an alternative to the iPad.
  3. Professional Development Library – After attending the ISTE (International Society for Technology in Education) Conference, we have amassed a small professional development library focused on best practices with technology.


Is there something you would like to see us carry?  Stop in and let’s chat!


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App of the Week: Read and Write for Google

Read and Write for Google is a FREE add-on to your Chrome web browser.  By going to the Chrome Web Store, and searching for Read and Write for Google, you can easily have this tool at your or your students disposal.

Many of the features of Read and Write for Google are excellent support features for those students who may struggle reading or perhaps even struggle to write. Read and Write for Google turns the text that is written is Google Docs into spoken word.  It allows the user to highlight a given text area and have it read aloud to them.  Users can highlight key information or even have the entire document read aloud.  You can then take all of the highlighted information from a selected text and collect it to study later. Read and Write for Google also has a speech to text feature, where a user can use a microphone on their computer to speak works and have Read and Write turn it into text in a Google Doc.  It is very user-friendly and works on PCs as well as Macs, or Chromebooks.  Read and Write for Google also works with many websites, as well as PDFs and allows users to have the text read aloud.  Read and Write for Google also has a Prediction tool that shows the user potential word choices when they are typing sentences.

If you are a NOVA student, staff, or faculty, you have a free Google account to use to get Read and Write for Google. Get started using Read and Write for Google, for FREE, now!

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