Connecting to the past, delivering the future

Think Different!

Connecting to the past, delivering the future

This is the title of one of my keynotes and was put together as a reaction to the embracing of a new technology or edu-strategy as the ‘next big thing’, and discarding what has gone before, as if previous practise was now totally archaic and ineffective.

Of course, this is just not the case. Many teachers already teach extremely well and effectively, ‘Thank you very much’. What we need is balance as we move forward with our innovations and new ideas.

As an example, teachers have accrued 1000s of Word documents and ahem, many Powerpoints. (A future blog will focus on Powerpoint). These documents took many hours of hard work to create and are used week in week out, often via a trip to the photocopier first thing in the morning to rattle off 30/60/90 copies, (delete as appropriate).

It’s time to recycle your documents, go paperless and transform the contents of your documents at the same time.

Recycle your existing documents


1 Import your Word documents into Pages on your iPad. (A simple way to achieve this is to store your documents in DropBox or Google Drive and import them via the relevant cloud based app on your iPad)

2 Add images to the newly imported document. Pages is very user friendly with this, and offers image editing options such as instant alpha for removing unwanted colour borders.

3 Share your new document as a PDF file to Showbie or iTunesU or GoogleClassroom or Google Drive or… (you get the idea)

Showbie is my favoured weapon of choice here. It allows students to annotate with pen, text and audio directly on the PDF. In the example above we’ve just saved 1000s of valuable school budget by going paperless, recycled your Word document into an interactive document with new media added and backed up your students’ work at the same time…


A suggested  improvement on workflow one.

1 Import a Powerpoint into Explain Everything (using the same workflow as in point 1 above).

2 Record voice narration and add real-time annotations to your slides using Explain Everything’s easy to use tools

3 Export this as a video to your camera roll via the Share icon.

4 Now import this video into your previously imported Word document in Pages. Pages, can add video files to documents.

5 Now export your document as an ePub document to Showbie, iTunesU, Google Classroom via the Share icon.

Your ePubs, (electronic books), can be opened in iBooks, allowing your students to use the search, inbuilt dictionary, highlighting and notes tools transforming your old Word documents into multi-media, interactive experiences. A huge improvement on a photocopy!

These are just two examples of the strategies made possible by new technologies. In a later blog we’ll take a closer look at transforming Powerpoints.

You’ll find video tutorials on this, and other workflows, in my app:  Teaching with ICT



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