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Safe Sounds for podcasting – Canada, 2014

February 28, 2014
07 copyright from Joan Vinall-Cox

Learning by Playing Around

February 12, 2014


I’m typing on Notability on my iPad Mini in the landscape view and using the correct fingering and I’m astounded at the speed I can type with. I’m enjoying this light tapping of a virtual keyboard, a set of letters laid out qwerty-like.The only thing I miss is a single apostrophe on the top keyboard. I find it slowing to have to tap for the number keyboard and then tap the apostrophe and then tap back to the alphabetical one. But it’s interesting, with my iPad resting on my knee and slightly wobbly, just tapping away.

I’m hungry and I’m playing a little. I just found out that I can type a small “i” and it will automatically turn into uppercase. If I type “im” it will automatically become I’m. I wonder what will happen when I type “its”. Yup, it converts; it’s given an added apostrophe automatically. I had to use a semi-colon to need to get at the numerical keyboard. Good to know.

Hearing Winter

February 6, 2014

I’m hearing this a lot lately –

Wild Sound 1

January 29, 2014

I’m playing with recognizing sounds – guess what this one is:


The biggest predictor of career success? Not skills or education — but emotional intelligence

January 3, 2014

Originally posted on Financial Post | Business:

What determines the probable future career success of individuals? Is it intelligence, technical knowledge and skills, their socio-economic background or educational success? Are the forces that make success the same for Generations X and Y as they are for the Baby Boomers? These questions have been researched extensively by recruiters, talent management experts and human behaviour researchers in the past decade. The answers now point to emotional competencies.

First, it’s important to note that a distinct North American and particularly American myth has been perpetuated that colours our perspective on career success: The “self-made man” or “anyone can make it to the top” myth. While it may have been true in the last century and the early part of this one, evidence doesn’t support its veracity now.

Researchers for the past century have investigated the determinants of career success. While intelligence has been the most consistent factor in determining job…

View original 641 more words

Student Presentations Videoed

October 30, 2013


When my students make group presentations, I like to offer them a video of their performance to supplement and strengthen my feedback to them on what they did well and what they need to improve. Today, with the help of a student videographer and the iPad app Capture, I found an easier way to give them access to their video.

First, because their presentation was longer than 15 minutes, I had to prepare my YouTube account to accept that. On the advice of a student, I went to to find out how to do that. Once I had verified myself with my phone number, I was allowed to upload longer videos to YouTube. So then it was time to video their presentation. I handed my iPad with the Capture app to a student and she used it to video the presentation.

I have used videos before, but I always found porting the video to my computer and then uploading it to YouTube or Vimeo took many times longer than the video itself. I found it onerous. This time, I received my iPad back from my student videographer, and clicked “Upload”. This is the screen I saw:


I chose the “Unlisted” posting, to give students their privacy. Only those with the link will be able to see the video. I use Wikispaces for my course container, and simply posted the link to the YouTube video of their presentation in their Project page, which only members of the group can access. I could have simply emailed the link out to them. Either way, they have control of the privacy level of their video. They can share the link, or not.

This process, using an iPad with the Capture app which is linked to YouTube, is so much easier than my previous process of uploading videos of student work, and I can give them privacy.


October 20, 2013

I’ve just read a very interesting post on a version of dyslexia that deals with numbers – and now I understand a lot more about how my mind works, and doesn’t work.

I have trouble with left and right, and trying to read maps is painful and embarrassing. I also switch numbers (1,2,4,3,5 etc.) if I try to read them quickly. I have to be VERY careful with large numbers as I can confuse 1000 with 10,000, etc. Plus it’s very hard for me to remember telephone and other numbers, even dates in history. So I think I have dyscalculia. I am also mildly dyslexic, and have some trouble with spelling, but I love words and writing. Despite those limitations, or maybe because of them, I’ve been told repeatedly that I’m a good teacher, good at helping people learn.

I am deeply grateful that I was able to learn and develop tactics that allowed me to survive and thrive as a student and as a teacher. Both as a teacher and as a learner I have observed that people often don’t remember how they learned something; we just own and use what we’ve learned and move on. So I can’t remember how and from whom I learned my tactics for surviving my weaknesses by adapting my strengths to cover for them. The only way I can express my gratitude is to show others alternate learning and performing routes that might work for them. And share with everybody what I learn about how our human minds work, and how differences in how they work can be dealt with compassionately.

Giving people the space and opportunity to learn how they learn, and how they can deal with their weakness as well as their strengths is not only wise and kind, it creates a better world for all of us.

If you are reading this and think you might be dyscalculic, check out your sense of self-worth and see if you have learned to focus on adaptations to help you survive, or if you dwell too much on what you struggle with. Perhaps you need to acknowledge how hard you work, as much as what you can’t do easily. To boast and inspire, I eventually got my Ph.D. and posted my thesis on line – and here’s my not quite up-to-date e-portfolio –


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