Friday, June 19, 2009

Final Post

This is the final post for this blog. Three years of assignments, readings, games, and ideas. A new job awaits (not quite sure where I will be yet....) and probably a new blog.

You can track me on twitter (brandtschneider) or my other blog which has been pretty dead lately.

I don't know quite how this blog became the place to go for web design assignments (try googling) but it certainly changed how I work. I recognized I was writing for a global audience. Good lessons and a big transformation.

Good luck.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Final Exam

The final exam will start today. The exam is designed to demonstrate that you can read a simple directive, gather information, and then communicate to an audience. I am using a version of the exam from a previous semester. Therefore you might find versions in the UDrive (Fall 2008, Spring 2008, etc...).

You can use any previous work to build on in this exam. Reuse and recycle.

You must complete it by the end of your exam period.
  • Seniors will have 2.5 hours to complete the exam, regardless of day they take it.
  • Other students will have today (Monday) plus their exam period.
I advise that you:
  • Plan it out first!
  • Keep it real simple.
  • Be sure to include all required elements.
  • Save it correctly. Be sure to code images and links correctly for UDrive.
  • Again, keep it simple!!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Exams and other stuff

1. If you are using twitter be careful about spamming. You might get followers that aren't appropriate. Block them and don't click on their links. Most of this is common sense digital literacy stuff. Be safe.
2. Exams will start Monday for seniors. Any senior can take the exam Monday. Just see me to start. Exams for everyone else start Wednesday. I will not be here Tuesday.
3. If you think you are on the bubble for exempt status see me quietly (please don't yell across the room).
4. Check out GGualpas Pecha Kucha. Outstanding work.
5. I'm actually rewriting the exam now. If you have paid attention you will have no problem with this exam.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

The End of the Road

Well, we are almost there. Another year is winding down. Boxes are being packed, grades calculated, whiteboards wiped clean. Has it been a good year? It has in many respects. We were faced with a lot of challenges.

I had three goals for the year:
  • Teach one main concept. By now I hope you hear it in your sleep (tell a story to an audience!). There is a ton of learning theory (and practical examples) that advocates teaching less content and staying on message. This is why we don't teach out of the book (the other reason is we don't have a book...). Does it cause frustration? Yes. Does it force you to solve problems? Yes. And, thankfully, it caused you to produce good work. You have produced the best work since I have came here three years ago. We did something right.
  • Learn how to twitter. I'm still working on this. But I learn from many teachers. In a room without windows I am getting constant updates from dozens of educators about what they are reading, planning, and producing. The work that others do helps me plan our lessons and it is where we get most of our reading assignments. I advocate you getting a twitter account for your learning (use texting or other things for more social things).
  • Get you to read more. I tried to find interesting and fun stories that would connect you to what is going on in the world. Be informed!
Today: either scramble (Oh my God--I need to graduate!), finish (computer didn't work yesterday), or relax quietly (phew!). Maybe play a game. Grades will be posted throughout the day after blog posts are done.

Best so far (based on your votes): cwyskiel, nfeliciano, cgallo, tmorrow. I also like the use of the green screen (Gshackett, JPowell). Check them out.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Web Design: Marking Period Exam

Here is the procedure for finishing the marking period exam:

  • Proofread what you have done. If you are doing a website be especially careful of your code for images (make sure they aren't directed to the W: drive). Make sure all links work.
  • Save folder to Udrive--WebSchneider--MP4Exam--Final Drafts
  • Complete blog post. 1. What did you learn? 2. What went well? 3. What would you change? 4. Who has the best project in the UDrive?
  • You must complete the project by Wednesday and the blog post by Thursday.
There will be no additional work assigned Thursday and Friday. I will post optional work. I will be in a grading frenzy. I have to complete senior grades by Friday. I also hope to post the exam review.

If you have missing work or issues with grades you will have the opportunity to gain some credit back on Thursday and Friday. I will post grades by Friday afternoon for all (I hope) on Edline. Any exemptions can be figured out from that post. I urge Juniors to take the exam. It can only help your GPA.

Looking ahead to exams. You can take the exam during any period (3-7). I will not be available on Tuesday for exams as I will be at the decathlon. You can take the exam Wednesday or Thursday from 12:00-2:00 or Friday at 10:00 if that fits your schedule.

Monday, June 08, 2009


State Open today so I will be leaving school early.

Projects due Wednesday. I see some great work coming. Please leave time for proofreading and checking!! Check your blog for comments.

Some interesting links:

Friday, June 05, 2009


Swine flu update in Hamden.

Check your blogs for comments and respond if needed.  

Be sure to leave time for proofreading your project.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Exam Notes

Some exam notes:

  • This class has been about telling a story.  It has been my mantra since Day One.  After looking at the rough drafts I notice that some of you are really struggling with this.  I highly advise finishing a rough draft now.  Only then can you evaluate your story.  
  • Be sure your images/pages are consistent in tone.  The rough drafts seem to have images that don't match in color/style/etc...This is especially true with the Flash projects.  Think of the Red Riding Hood example.  Each frame looks like it is part of the same story.
  • Get it done.  Some of you really, really, really need to consider working harder.  This is 20% of your grade.
  • Some of you are doing children's stories.  Remember, most children can't read.  Use your voice!
  • Best so far: Cwyskiel (click on New1), GDipietro, Mchawla, TMorrow.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Exam: Rough Drafts

Everyone does two things today:

  • Submit your rough draft to the Udrive (WebSchneider-MP4Exam).  Movies (save as movie file), Flash (export movie), or Websites (copy folder) should be named correctly (bschneiderexam).
  • Complete a quick blog post.  Three questions.  First, briefly describe your project. Second, what are you learning?  Third, are you working efficiently (how will you get done?)?
A few notes:
  • Be sure your voice drives the Pecha Kucha.  Monotones don't work.
  • Some of you are creating way-to-complicated Flash.  Keep it simple.  Rely more on sound!!
  • Be sure, very sure, that your links work in your website.  
I leave for the big track meet at 12:30.

Monday, June 01, 2009

Daniel Pink

Daniel Pink is pretty well known thinker and author.  I found this Pecha Kucha that he did. I think it would be valuable for us all to watch it today. It is not a perfect presentation but it does have the most important elements; he respects the audience and it has a definite message. Now, if you are reading this in school you probably see a big white space on the blog. We will watch the video together.

What about your presentation? Are you telling a coherent story?