Thursday, April 10, 2014

Growing your Blog Audience

Each of you should have a blog post measuring the reach of your blog and the red clustrmap dots.  We did this on Monday. Some of you began your campaign to grow your audience by commenting on blogs.  We will continue this today.

We have discussed the difference between spam comments and valuable comments.  Remember that a valuable comment builds on the conversation.  Your goal for this assignment is to create comments that make people interested to read more about your thoughts.

Building an audience is one of the most important skills we will work on.  Nearly every product, service, and idea is sold via the web now.  You MUST know how to get your work out there to survive and eat.  This blog is practice for that.

I'm also hoping to raise the level of work on your google profile.  For many of you your twitter feed is your #1 result on google.  For many of you this is NOT good.  Seriously.  And remember, swearing is bad.

Today you will do three things:
1. Write blog posts to increase the quality of your blog (see topics below).  You need posts that people will link to, email their friends, post on twitter.  We want people to be saying "Read this!".
2. Comment, comment, comment.  Using google you will find blogs to comment on.  You will leave comments everywhere.  You will make the comments interesting and they will extend the conversation. Be sure to leave your blog address in the comment info!!!
3. If you find an interesting blog post you will write about and link back to the original blog.  This is "polite blogging".  This is how traffic gets generated.  "I read this great blog article about...".

Suggested blog posts (remember to include links, a cool title, embed video/images if needed).  Choose one or all:
1. If you are a football fan: Explain when you would punt the ball and when you "go for it" so anyone can understand it.
2. If you are a cheerleader: Is cheerleading becoming more dangerous?  Describe how cheerleading has changed over time.  Where is the line between OK and too dangerous?
3. If you are a musician:  How have headphones and iPods changed music?
4. If you are an artist/photographer: How has the internet changed how we view art?  Does the internet help or hurt art?
5. If you eat: What should we eat?  Should we be allowed to eat whatever we want?  What if we know what we eat is slowly killing us?
6. If you breath: Whats in the air that you breath?  Is it safe to breath?

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Blogging: Wednesday Work

Choose three of the following to write a blog post.

1. Can you spot the liar?

2. What is your favorite infographic on this list?  Infographics are changing how we tell our stories.

3. Should the child have been at sea?  Take a position and defend it.

4. If you look up what you want to order for dinner will you be hacked?  How can you protect your system?

5. What is the top news story of the hour?  Right NOW.

6. Should students be allowed to wear Google Glasses?

7. Imagine you were studying the Civil War and found out that for entertainment kids of that time period spent hours a day playing games where they simulated killing people.  Now think about games that you play on the computer.  Will future society look kindly at us for spending hundreds of billions of dollars and games that simulate shooting people?

Each blog post must:

  • Be long enough to explain the topic.
  • Include your opinion and evidence.
  • Include a link.
  • One of the posts must include an embedded video.


1. Everyone prints out your summary screen from Code Avengers.   Must have 400pts.
2. Complete a Google a Day.  Add to spreadsheet.

Sunday, April 06, 2014


Challenge #1:  Create a one page resume and put in your google folder and print for teacher.  This is a TRADITIONAL resume.  Here are some tips.  Here is an example.  I will spend a lot of time on this assignment.  We will make infographic resumes shortly.

Some things to think about:
  • Use google doc to make notes and brainstorm about the resume.
  • List EVERYTHING you could possibly include.  Only include stuff you did in middle school if it is truly amazing (like winning a National Science Fair or something).
  • Follow the format, follow the format, follow the format.
  • Use active verbs.  Quantify everything:
    • Created and published movie review podcast that reached 75 listeners per day
    • Directed Hope Club recruitment plan that increased membership by 75%
    • Implemented lunch recycling plan that resulted in 35% reduction in cafeteria waste
Challenge #2:  Create an account in Meograph.  Create a meograph around one of the following:
  • Your family vacations.
  • Your favorite professional teams best season (Road to Victory...)
  • Battles of the Revolutionary War
  • Upcoming tour of your favorite singer/band
Challenge #3:  Using the app Hopscotch on the iPad code the app so:
  • Level 1: The monkey will travel in the correct direction when you tilt the ipad (up-down-left-right).
  • Level 2: The monkey will follow a maze that you design.
  • Level 3: The monkey needs to follow the maze you design or it will grow so big it explodes...
Challenge #4: Class work.
  • Complete the Google A Day.  You should have at least ten scores in your google a day spreadsheet.
  • All students should have scored at least 400pts on Code Avengers

Thursday, April 03, 2014

Blog Writing

1. Update your blog with any missing assignments.  Post any entries to Google+.

2. Analyze the red dots on your clustrmap on your blog.  

  • Please write a short blog entry about your audience.  
  • You can also go to blogger and look at your stats to see which blog posts got read, and by whom. 

3. Play with Google Story Builder.  

  • Figure out how to construct a story and use the tool.
  • Embed your story on your blog.
  • Post to Google+
4. Evaluate the Build with Chrome website.  Obviously you need to be on Chrome for your browser.
  • Is this just a game, or does virtual reality act as a teaching tool?
  • Notice you can search for an address.  Can you build your house, or Seymour HS, or Yankee Stadium?  Thats just an example.  
  • Post a blog entry, be sure to include link.
  • Post to Google+
Please remember, I give you these examples so you can practice writing online.  Please continue to improve your blog entries.

Does your blog post:
  • Include links for anything that should be linked?
  • Writing that is clear, free of errors, and inviting to the reader?
  • Include videos and images where appropriate?
Everyone should have three blog entries posted today.

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

A/B Day Madness

We have 30 minutes.  Lets watch some videos.  Put on your headphones.

 I love this Arnold video. His movies were really big when I was in high school so that voice is iconic. He really, really believes what he is saying.  That last line is classic.

If you watch this TED talk watch it from the beginning and do not skim forward! Its freaky amazing. 

I've watched this 100 times. Still funny. 

Funny Ellen moments.

Additional work:

  • Do some wikipedia edits.  Check out the SHS page.  Perhaps there is too much information there does not quite fit wikipedia's guidelines.  We can also organize it better.
  • Google a Day.  Keep practicing.
  • Read this story about caffeine drinks.  Also, I'm pretty sure any type of soda or fruit drink may shorten your life.
  • This review in the NYTimes of Guy Fierri's new restaurant .  It is very, very harsh.
  • If you did all that check out some of my favorite videos.  Be sure to have headphones on.

Sunday, March 30, 2014


Please work on your coding today.

1. Work in code avengers.

2. Check out

3. Watch the video

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Computer Lab Redesign Test

Imagine you cleared this room out.  No chairs, no computers, no nothing.

Imagine I gave you $40,000 to outfit a new computer lab.  What would you design?  I want you to prepare a proposal.
Your lab might look like a Starbucks with a juice machine, couches and a few tables.  It might have a bunch of round tables for people to collaborate.  Your lab might have PCs, iMacs, Laptops, or iPads.  Will it have a TV or a Smartboard?  Should there be a rug?  Posters?  Ergonomic furniture?
What are some of my parameters for the computer lab?
  • There should be seating for 25.  This does not necessarily mean 25 computers.
  • You must budget for everything.  This includes chairs, wifi hubs, printers, etc... You must budget for software.
  • This is a "general purpose" lab for a high school.
What must you prepare?
  • A spreadsheet outlining how you will spend the money.  Including formulas and charts.
  • One page memo.  Memo must start with the words "I recommend that...."  Follow the format for the memo!!
  • A slideshow presentation to the class.  
  • Drawings or video of proposed lab.
  • You must turn in a paper copy of your proposal as well as post all work on your blog and Google+.
What will I look for?
  • That you contribute to discussions and documents.
  • Thoughtful design and research.  Will the lab be effective? You should show evidence of research ("I emailed Microsoft", "I surveyed the English department")
  • Accuracy and proper use of tools (google docs, spreadsheet formulas, etc...).  
  • Presentation is consistently designed.  For example, your fonts on the spreadsheet match the fonts on your memo.
This will be due at end of class on Friday.
I will nitpick this project like crazy.  Be ready.  This is the first assignment I will really check for accuracy.

One Page memo directions: link blocked

September 05, 2006