iLife Suite for MacBook

Using iPhoto on the Mac is pretty similar to using it on the iPad, the main difference being the amped up editing tools that are available on the Mac. I had some trouble getting my devices to communicate with each other so I could transfer photos from the iPad to the Mac without tethering. Once I got the Cloud settings right, they showed up in the photo stream. ┬áIf I had them all in a folder on Google drive, I could have dragged/dropped them into iPhoto easily. (There’s an idea.) The slideshow feature is pretty cool–you could use it to introduce a new unit or to have kids write responses to images/art. You can also create a book and save it as a PDF instead of actually paying to print it.

I have to interject a reminder of how important it’s going to be for us to get our kids to save stuff to their H drives (or better yet their Google drive) so they’ll have access to it no matter what device they’re on. This will save a lot of heartache later.

iMovie on the Mac is very different from iMovie on the iPad. Where I thought I had made something pretty awesome on iPad, it became multiplied by 300 when I created something similar on the Mac. Endless editing features for video and audio. Wait until you have all of your images in the right order before you try to do any voiceovers–you’ll save yourself a lot of work and redoing later on. When the project is finished, just export to your Google drive for sharing. Be sure to save the project file until grading is complete so changes can be made without having to start over completely.

Garage Band on the Mac is pretty cool. Students can create podcasts and include images to support their words. Encourage them to write a script first and use the space bar to break the audio into tracks so if they mess up they won’t have to re-record the entire track. Students can also record themselves reading an essay they’ve written to check for fluency. I didn’t play with the voice features too much here because I’m not crazy about how I sound when I’m recorded.

Overall, iLife on the Mac is way more powerful, but students can be just as successful with these apps on their iPads.

Day 3 – iLife Suite & Creativity Tools

Today we focused on the iLife Suite for the iPad: iPhoto, iMovie, and Garage Band. The common thread of this week is that the possibilities are endless. You can edit and add and tweak everything to your heart’s content. It is so easy to move from one program to the next because the editing processes are so similar. Don’t be afraid to try something different: the undo button is your friend.

iPhoto
A good practice is to create your album in the photos app before getting started. Of all the really cool enhancement features in iPhoto, the effects palette is my favorite. It has features like those you find in Instagram. Once you’ve finished editing your photos, you have the option of sharing them to many different platforms. Two we looked at were Beam and Journal. Beaming lets you to share pictures with any other iDevice that’s on the same network. The journal option allows you to add text–it reminds me a bit of an interactive scrapbook. It could be another way of presenting the mind map project.

iMovie
You can also share an album to iMovie to start a new project or just import what you want from the camera roll. iMovie is SO easy to learn. One #xCamp-er commented that she showed it to a group of second graders, and they required very little instruction to get started. If you’ve used Windows MovieMaker, you’ll find iMovie to be much friendlier. In about an hour, I filmed, edited, and produced a video demonstrating how to get your iPhone earbuds back into the case properly, then I exported it to my camera roll and uploaded it to YouTube from there. I couldn’t export directly to YouTube because my login didn’t work, but I’ve fixed that issue now. iMovie also has a trailer feature that would be great as an introduction to a unit or book or as a review. In 20-30 minutes, some participants completed some really amazing trailers. I’m working on one to introduce the stories and writings we will complete in unit 1.

Garage Band
Smart instruments turn the most off-beat, tone-deaf music fan into a pro. This is definitely an activity best used with headphones. Students can create their own soundtrack and share it with iMovie. Teachers can record student voices for fluency checks. You can use the regular instruments and create original music. It’s not surprising to learn that musicians have created entire albums using Garage Band. Here again, you’re limited only by your imagination. And you might be surprised by what you remember. Apparently I haven’t forgotten how to play “Heart and Soul” on the piano.