Archive for the ‘Presentation Tools’ Category

I blogged about animated gifs a couple of years ago when I came across the inspirational work of George Redhawk.

Just now though, I’ve come across another master of animated gifs: James Eads in whose work we can simply get lost!


Born in Los Angeles, Eads lives and works at the Brewery Arts in Los Angeles, I came across his work on a September 2016 blogpost by Moss & Fog.  Check out his tumblr and instagram profiles for more inspirational art.

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I came across a fabulous link the other day from Education Technology and Mobile Learning which is perfect for use with students by either English teachers or any of us working in school libraries.

The Digital Storytelling Wheel for Teachers post looks like one of those posts that will keep any teacher and their students busy for a very long time as they work their way through exploration of a huge range of iPad and Android Apps together with a host of Web tools.

I just love the graphic too!

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It’s a while since I last blogged about Google Doodles …..

Google Doodles

I really love Google Doodles!

They never fail to bring a smile to my face and I just love sharing what has become a morning ‘find’ with family, friends and work colleagues when I open Google.com on my laptop in the morning.  I’m in awe of both the creativity and the ingenuity of their creators……

In a nutshell, a Google Doodle, is a temporary graphic variation of the Google logo on its homepage and aims to honour or celebrate holidays, events, achievements and/or people.  Each of these special illustrations embed links with a host of information about the focus topic.  A Google Doodle appears for just one day, but is archived and available for viewing on the Google Doodle website.

Just last week I came across a fabulous entry about a woman by the name of Aletta Jacobs who is, among many other ‘firsts’, noted as a suffragette, a doctor and the inventor of the first effective contraceptive.

Clearly Aletta Jacobs (1854-1929) was a trailblazer for her time.  Just last week on February 9th, she was honoured for what would have been her 163rd birthday with a Google Doodle.


Like so many of the links associated with Google Doodles, this one: Aletta Jacobs: 5 fast facts you need to know gives a thumbnail sketch of this amazing woman and her contribution to our world.

Google Doodles really do hold a goldmine of information.  Use them as an inspirational, quick look at information about a host of different topics that have been the feature of one of the many Google Doodles created over the years.  Search the Google Doodle website for previous creations dating back to 1998.  You’ll be surprised at the amount of information that can be gleaned from them in a very short time!

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For me, the gift of blogging is providing myself with a vehicle to ‘think’ about issues and formalizing my own thoughts on different topics.  Some thoughts sit with me for a very long time before I get around to exploring them further by teasing them out in writing.

I’ve touched on this one many times over the life of this blog.  It’s always under the guise of encouraging lifelong learning.  My thoughts are many and varied – just use the keywords ‘lifelong learning’ to search NovaNews to find my thoughts and ideas.

I aspire to lifelong learning myself and fervently hope that all those of us in the teaching game also reach out to constantly challenge themselves with new thoughts and new ideas and to discover and savour the joy of lifelong learning.

At the end of it all though, is our stated aim to inspire the students in our schools to become lifelong learners so that they are able to set their own challenges and be lead along a path which may quench their thirst for learning.

Some time ago, I came across this fabulous infographic created by Mia MacMeekin. Just now I’ve been re-visiting it, thinking about the keywords used and the thought bubbles created under each.  This infographic, I realize,  encapsulates so many of the thoughts and words that I’ve been sharing here on NovaNews or spoken about to colleagues over a cuppa or presented at conferences or meetings.


How great it would be to inspire our students with the many thoughts included in this infographic.   Indeed how great it would be to inspire educators to get on board and modify some of their daily routines by considering and adopting some of these thoughts.

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I saw the trailer for Loving Vincent earlier in the year when it was first uploaded.  Quite simply – it is both awesome and beautiful!

Then I started reading the story behind the making of the movie, which, on its own, is quite breathtaking in the complexity and enormity of its production.  Loving Vincent is to be the world’s first painted film.

For it we will have to paint over 62,450 frames of painting on over 1,000 canvases. We shot the film with actors, and now we are literally painting over it frame by frame. This is a very laborious and time-consuming process. It has taken us 4 years to develop the technique, and it will take us 1 year with a team of over 100 painters working at studios in the Polish cities of Gdansk and Wroclaw, and a studio in Athens to complete the film.

The reason we are doing it is not because we want to be the first, or that we want to set any records, it is because we believe that you cannot truly tell Vincent’s story without his paintings, so we needed to bring his paintings to life.

An amazing undertaking, which reveals itself as even more impressive the more I delved into the movie’s website: Loving Vincent.  Explore how the film is made by viewing anyone of a number of short videos on the website.  This one, for example, explains how the artists paint every shot with oil paints on canvas.

I can’t wait to see the finished movie!

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I love art, especially the creativity that lies behind it.

Nearly 6 million people found this beautiful video before me.  I’m glad I found it though!  Such talent to create something from no more than nails and string is very, very impressive.

It is a portrait of Justin Timberlake.

After watching the video below, I did an image search for Timberlake and came up with this one which could well have been the model for this artist’s creation.

Justin Timberlake

To create the portrait, Zenyk Palagniuk used 24 kilometers of thread and 13 thousand nails.  It took him 200 hours to create the finished product.


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A couple of months ago I blogged about HoloLens.  There was a fabulous video demonstrating the power of HoloLens and how it may well change the way we work, live and learn.

With disappointment, I just discovered that due to a copyright infringement, the YouTube channel associated with the video has been taken down.

Fascinated by the incredible impact that Microsoft HoloLens is most likely to have on us all, I found these two videos which give a glimpse of the capabilities of this emerging technology.

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I’ve not had a need to make a video before, so I admit to not exploring the machinations of what to use or how to put one together.

But when I needed to make one, which finally happened just a couple of weeks ago, I turned to Movie Maker – mainly because I’d seen what a young person had created using it and my thinking went along the lines of ‘if an 11 year old can do it …. surely I can!!

As it turned out … that was mostly the case!  While a work colleague had told me that Movie Maker was a bit on the clunky side, I thought I’d give it a go.  Running on Windows, I found that it was fairly intuitive to use ….. and ….. as fate would have it ….. new material to incorporate into my movie kept turning up, so by the third run of creating my movie, I kind of felt like a pro!!

Then someone sent me a link to a post about CharlisCraftyKitchen which appeared more than a year ago on Business Insider Australia.  Reading how two very young kids are sharing their passion for cooking and baking tips is impressive enough on its own.  Learning that these young kids are generating a small fortune, falls into the mind blowing category!

According to Outrigger’s estimates, Charli’s channel generates an average of $US127,777 in ad revenue per month. That’s taking into account YouTube’s cut of revenue. The channel gets an average of 29 million views each month — in March, it had 29,133,270.

Now aged nine and eight, Charli & Ashlee exude confidence as they talk to the screen selling their talents!  With not hundreds, nor thousands, but millions of hits, it’s worth taking a moment to check out CharlisCraftyKitchen site and while your at it, watch a video or two!

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It’s hard to believe that Pindex hasn’t been developed before now because when you stop and think about it, the idea has almost always been out there.

Launched just a month ago, its premise is simple and its design is very appealing.  Its four person team aims to curate educational videos and infographics for teachers and students.

In short it’s a pinboard for learning or looking at it another way …..  a Pinterest for Educators.

More information can be extracted from the Pindex website:

Pindex is a pinboard to collect and discover the best educational material. It’s not just for teachers and students. Anyone can create boards to share their passion and enjoy the adventure of learning.

Take a look at this video which gives a glimpse of what’s available on Pindex

or explore a guide to Pindex to figure out how best this new resource can be used in your school or shared as a resource through your library.

Be quick to request an invite.  I’m anxiously awaiting mine so that I can have a more in depth peek at this fabulous new resource!

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It’s hard to believe it, but the artist who created these animated gifs, George Redhawk, is legally blind.

Redhawk, also known as DarkAngelØne,  suffers from the rare condition of Charles Bonnet Syndrome, a condition in which visually impaired people see things that are not really there.

His mesmerising animated gifs are aesthetically beautiful, yet amazingly complex.  It’s hard to imagine how long it must take to create one, let alone the painstakingly complex process their creation must involve.

On his Google+ website, Redhawk gives permission to copy and paste his animations, but requests that credit be given to him for his creative work.

While I came upon his work on a recent My Modern Met post, an online check reveals that many have written about this talented artist.  A glance through his Google+ website reveals a little more of the man behind this astounding work.

Animated Gif - Woman of the Sea - by George Redhawk

Animated Gif - Stairway to Heaven - by George Redhaw

Animated Gif - I am Man - by George Redhawk

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