I wonder if I put a few words here?

Category: EdTech Inquiry

FINAL POST :)

 

In summation, all three of these cloud-based servers offer valuable resources for both educators and students. There are paid resources, like Microsoft, and also free resources, or those with little to no cost, like Google. It is up to the school district or principle to decide which system will be implemented, and is best for their learners. It is important to keep in mind the budget of the school and grants that are available to support technology in the classroom. 

Here are some useful links to decide which system will work best for you: 

https://www.microsoft.com/en-ca/

https://education.microsoft.com/en-us

https://blogs.windows.com/windowsexperience/2017/05/02/microsoft-education-empowering-students-teachers-today-create-world-tomorrow/

https://products.office.com/en-ca/microsoft-teams/group-chat-software

https://www.apple.com/ca/education/apple-teacher/

https://www.apple.com/ca/education/products/

https://www.apple.com/ca/education/teaching-tools/

https://www.apple.com/ca/education/teacher-resources/

https://teachercenter.withgoogle.com/

https://www.google.ca/docs/about/

 

Post 6: How Each Platform Supports Education

Microsoft:

 

 

 

As a university student, I have used many Microsoft applications in my schooling thus far. For the most part I have used Microsoft Word and Powerpoint for all my note taking, paper writing, and presentation making. It is a real advantage as a Uvic student that we get these products for free. In terms of how Microsoft supports education they often offer their application bundles at a discounted price to schools and districts around the world. Additionally, their website had this to say “Microsoft introduced a set of educational products and services, inspired by teachers and students, including a new Windows experience called Windows 10 S; new experiences in Microsoft Teams for modern classroom collaboration; new features in Minecraft and mixed reality to spark creativity; a range of Windows 10 S PCs for K-12 classrooms; and the perfect Windows 10 S device for college students—Surface Laptop.” Other than these educational products and services, Microsoft offers a useful feature for teachers called “Educator Center”. In the “Educator Center” teachers can make use of many features to better their classroom. The first feature is Courses which helps teachers learn how to use Microsoft technology effectively in the classroom to engage students. The second feature is Learning Paths which focuses on skill development or mastery of Microsoft products and offers a collection of courses for deeper learning in a topic. The third feature is resources and lesson plans which offers ideas, classroom materials, and ready to use lesson plans to guide students in their development of future-ready skills. All in all,  Microsoft has been around the longest and considering that it is continuously updating and getting better with time, it is the most reliable software we should be using in Victoria schools.

Microsoft Education: Empowering students and teachers of today to create the world of tomorrow

Microsoft Educator Center

Apple: 

 

 

 

Apple supports both K-12 education and post-secondary education. For post-secondary students, Apple provides discounts on their devices (such as Mac and iPad). Apple stores also provide sessions to teach coding and talk to creators that use Apple products to create art. Apple also provides discounts for buying class-sets of iPads for schools, learn more about how iPads can be used in the classroom here https://www.apple.com/ca/education/products/. This link also provides statistics on how iPads in the classroom contribute to student achievement.

Similar to Google, Apple offers an Apple Teacher https://www.apple.com/ca/education/apple-teacher/ learning program to help teachers build confidence in using technology in the classroom. Apple also has created two apps to suppor

t digital learning in the classroom. These apps are called schoolwork and classroom https://www.apple.com/ca/education/teaching-tools/

Apple provides many resources for teachers https://www.apple.com/ca/education/teacher-resources/. One unique resource is Everyone Can Create, which encourages creativity through photography, art, video, and music to incorporate into any lesson. Apple provides Teacher Guides with sample lesson ideas and integration techniques for different subject areas. Apple also is a part of ConnectED since 2014 and has donated 100$ million to schools to improve their technology education.

Google: 

Google classroom was launched in 2014 and allows teachers to build a virtual classroom where they can invite all of their students to join. Classroom allows teachers to distribute information to students and parents easily, and post and grade assignments online.

The Google Forms feature allows teachers to conduct quizzes through Classroom, as well as grade them for efficiency. There is also a Google Classroom app that allows students to stay connected even when they do not have access to a computer, so it is a great option for teachers who want to have an online platform for their classes, so that students always know where to find dates and resources for the class. Classroom is well-organized and even has an “upcoming” box at the top of the page where students can view upcoming assignments.

Google has many fantastic resources that support education. While they inevitably require the use of technology, they are accessible for students, teachers, and parents. Google also provides courses and Google Educator certification for teachers who wish to use the many tools Google provides to their fullest potential. In Google’s Teacher Centre found on their website, Teachers can find information about these courses and certification, resources from other teachers as well as Google, and groups of like-minded educators they can meet and collaborate with. 

During the current pandemic that is causing the closure of many schools, universities, workplaces, and even national borders around the world, Google is going above and beyond to support distance learning. Google is providing Hangouts calls for up to 250 people, live streams for up to 1,000 viewers, and the ability to record and save meetings to Google Drive, and all of these features are free until July 1.

One note is that since Google keeps its information in the United States, teachers should be cautious of what information they put on the classroom. They may need to have information release forms signed if they wish to release any images or identifying features of their students.

EdTech Inquiry 4: Word Processing

Microsoft – Word

Microsoft has one of the most well known word processing formats on the globe, Microsoft Word. Word was first developed in 1983 and has since been updated many times to increase proficiency and encourage businesses and schools everywhere to use it. As I discussed last week, Word is by far my favourite Microsoft application in terms of easy usability. I am very fortunate as a Uvic student to get Microsoft products for free. 

Similarly to other word processing applications, Microsoft Word has a variety of helpful tools such as spelling and grammar corrector, speech recognition, inserting pictures, typefaces, special codes, tables, graphs, word art, and many other things to assist the user in making documents. In addition to tools, word has 30 different templates to make a document for any purpose. A few of the most popular templates include note taking, calendar, cover letter, resume, brochure, flyer, and menu. 

Word also allows for easy collaboration amongst peers and our professors often ask us to submit word files so they can add track changes to grade our work. One of the downsides to Microsoft Word is to collaborate, users must all have word on their computers, and since a lot of people are making the switch to Apple, using word is challenging since Apple comes with a different word processing app. 

 

Apple – Pages

Pages is Apple’s native word processing application. Pages was first released in 2005 and is compatible with both macOS and iOS devices. Pages allows for easy collaboration between Apple devices, which could encourage students to share work and make group assignments easier. Pages has pre-set templates that include note-taking, resumes, CVs, and letters. For projects, students could create brochures using one of the templates provided or create posters for presentations. 

As I spoke about last week, Pages has a very user-friendly interface. Once students are taught how to use the application, they will be able to create many different projects and use the word-processor as a versatile educational tool. Students could choose to use one of the pre-set templates or use their creativity to create one of their own. 

The benefits of Pages are seen in an all Mac or Apple environment. As the collaboration only works between Apple devices, so, if the school uses Macs as their primary operating system, Pages would be the best word-processing application. 

 

Google- Docs

Google Docs was launched in 2006 and is compatible with any device connected to the internet including smartphones. Google also launched an IOS app in 2014 to make Docs more portable and accessible to smartphone users. This app can be used offline, and is compatible with Microsoft Word. A big perk of Google Docs is that it saves automatically if the device is connected to the internet, so users have no need to worry about losing their work

Google Docs also has many templates to choose from, to help those who are not confident formatting. These include but are not limited to resume, letter, recipe, and project proposal templates. 

As I mentioned previously, Google Docs provides the opportunity for simultaneous collaboration between users, making group work manageable even at a distance. There is also a voice-typing option. I have not yet explored the accuracy of the voice- typing, but it is a great way to boost accessibility. Docs also has spell check, which can prevent students from making some basic syntax errors.

These blog posts happen to be written on Google Docs, actually.

TechEd Inquiry 2: Pros and Cons of Cloud-Based Servers

Here are some pros and cons of three of the most popular Cloud-Based servers.

Google

Pros

  • Free 15 GB of storage
  • Cost-effective ($2.79/month for 100 GB)
  • Expanding offices into Canada
  • Easy to navigate- categories, folders, recent (if forgotten to sort), search bar
  • Easy sharing/collaboration
  • Option to set sharing preferences (who can edit, only view, public or private file)
  • Commenting, chat in documents
  • Most versatile free platform
  • Databases around the world to back up & secure information
  • Documents can be modified without wifi
  • Easy access from almost any device
  • Google account can be used to sign into multiple websites, apps, and services

Cons

  • Databases around the world in countries with different privacy laws
  • Documents do not automatically save to device for offline use
  • The smartphone apps are more difficult to navigate
  • At risk of crashing & losing information (like any cloud-based system)

Microsoft

Below are the Pros and Cons for Microsoft Office. Microsoft Office has been around the longest and is still running so it’s safe to say Office is a successful software.

Pros

  • Applications for all needs: Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Outlook, One Note
  • Other applications for more business services: Publisher, Project, Teams, Visio
  • SKYPE is a very popular microsoft application for video calls and conferences
  • Work on your documents from anywhere with access to the internet
  • Boosted productivity: easy to use, team collaboration (office co-authoring tool), regular automatic updates to the software
  • Reduced security risks: encrypted email, data loss prevention, mobile device management, advanced threat analytics
  • Around since 1988 and is most used cloud-based software (i.e. great reputation)
  • Multiple flexible plans catered to businesses of all sizes

Cons

  • Need a microsoft account to use the services
  • Subscription based payment (as a Uvic student we get these services for free)
  • If internet is down you cannot access your document from another device
  • Competition with other cloud-based services in schools ( SD63 is using google exclusively)

https://blog.goptg.com/blog/2016/03/31/the-pros-and-cons-of-office-365-for-business

Apple

Below are some of the Pros and Cons of Apple’s iWork system and the devices themselves. iWork was first introduced in 2005 and has grown since then.

Pros

  • Applications for all needs: Pages, Numbers, Keynote, and iCloud
  • Other applications on the Apple System include iMovie, Garageband and Photobooth
  • Free for all iOs and macOS customers
  • Applications are intuitive for beginners
  • Has started using peer-collaborating on documents (only for other mac users)
  • Apple works with educators to promote technology use in the classroom

Cons

  • iCloud storage space is limited (only 5GB for free)
  • iWork is not supported on other devices (such as Windows or Android)
  • Apple products can be pricey for schools/students

 

By Madeline, Catrina, and Kiya

TechEd Inquiry 1

Hello! This is Maddie, Kiya, and Catrina for our group Ed Tech post. We have decided to look at the benefits of different cloud systems in schools. We are doing a deep-dive into Microsoft, Google, and Apple. 

 

What is a Cloud-Based System?

Cloud-based information systems are generally a new way of transferring information from the user to a server. These cloud-systems can allow people to access documents and applications across different devices, as the information is located on an external server and is managed by the service providers. For more information on cloud-based systems, click here. For our purpose as educators, we are more focused on the different applications these cloud-based systems host and some of the benefits and drawbacks of the system. 

 

Apple

The first example of a cloud-based system is Apple’s iCloud. iCloud was launched in 2011 and is used as a platform to share photos, documents, and music. However, iCloud has been developed and improved upon under many names such as iTools when it first launched in 2001. Apple’s system uses Pages as a note-taking and word processing application. In addition to Pages, they also use Keynote for slideshow presentations and Numbers for spreadsheets.

 

Microsoft Office

Another example of a cloud-based server and probably the most commonly used one is Microsoft Office developed by Bill Gates in 1988. Microsoft Office features a variety of applications for different uses. The most commonly used apps by businesses are Microsoft Word for word processing, Microsoft Excel to create and edit spreadsheets, Microsoft Powerpoint to create presentations, and Microsoft Outlook to manage personal information. 

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