Beth Goodwin created a short “PhotoPeach” digital story to share a visual narrative (set to music) of last Friday’s professional development session in Wells, Maine. She titled it, “Teachers at Work-21st Century Literacy.” After an initial hour-long presentation, all junior high school teachers in attendance had about an hour and a half to work and explore the digital tools of their choice. Most worked on developing integrated lessons for their classes. This was a great plan for a morning PD session. All the teachers brought their own laptops to the cafeteria for the session (some have had school-provided laptops for the past NINE years!) and everyone seemed to appreciate the exploration and work time. There were plenty of extension cords and power strips for everyone to plug in, and the wireless Internet connectivity worked great all morning. We had about seven tech integration coaches / facilitators floating around the room answering questions and sharing ideas. You’ll see several of us in Beth’s photo slide show, including my 9 year old daughter!
All too often in technology-related PD sessions, I think we’re tempted to “overconsume” content and give participants too little time to play and try out the tools as well as ideas which we’re discussed or happen to be “on the minds” of participants. Cheryl Oakes did a great job setting up this PD morning!
PhotoPeach lets users share their creations in two formats. First, users can share “stories” which are “normal” video slideshows including transitions, text and music. This is Beth’s video (or “story”) from Friday at Wells Junior High School:
The second way PhotoPeach allows for multimedia sharing is as a “spiral.” This is the same story by Beth, with the same music, but you’ll see the images spiral around as the video plays.
In addition to the “spiral” story, PhotoPeach media products are distinguished by the fact that visitors can leave messages on the story and these become automatically embedded as part of the video in the closing credits. It doesn’t look like comments can be moderated, but they can be removed if desired by the original author. Free PhotoPeach accounts are limited to a maximum of 30 photos per slideshow, and you must use provided music. You also can’t download videos you’ve created. Premium PhotoPeach accounts ($3 per month) permit users to upload their own music, use an unlimited number of photos, and also download created videos directly to a local hard drive.
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