rAPPido Review: the new Canva app!

Screen Shot 2014-12-04 at 9.04.48 AMOh, how I love templates. How I appreciate a funky, new design where I can simply plug in my information and let all those people with a modicum of aesthetics do all the hard work for me.

Imagine my excitement when I heard through this article that Canva, which up to now was only a web-based application, now has a new app!

Price: free

What is it?

Canva helps you create posters, invites, info graphics, etc. It has many , many different lay outs.

How does it work?

First, you choose a template:

Screen Shot 2014-12-04 at 8.23.02 AM

I chose to make a poster. Then scroll through the vast field of lay out options:

Screen Shot 2014-12-04 at 8.23.31 AM

Ok. Picked one. Now for my text!

Screen Shot 2014-12-04 at 8.27.30 AM

Ok. So far so good. I add the text by simply tapping on the filler words. You have to tap each line to modify the text. Here is where the app got slow, like molasses slow. I thought it was frozen but realized after a while that it was just taking a long time to process. I am not sure if this is because I am using an older iPad (iPad 3) or if it was just having a bad day…Will have to try again at a later date to test this out.

You can also add more text by choosing one of the text layouts.

Screen Shot 2014-12-04 at 8.30.17 AM

There are many layouts:

Screen Shot 2014-12-04 at 8.33.32 AM

You can move text around and change the colour of the font as well as the backgrounds:

Screen Shot 2014-12-04 at 8.44.05 AM

I was especially impressed to see that they provide the hex code for the colours, which is super handy if you want to get the colour exactly right:

Screen Shot 2014-12-04 at 8.45.05 AM

Once you are done, you can download your design as either an image or a pdf:

Screen Shot 2014-12-04 at 8.46.18 AM

But the sharing was weird. When I first tapped on the share tab, I got this message:

Screen Shot 2014-12-04 at 8.46.51 AM

So I went back to the “My designs” page and then opened my poster again and was finally able to get my sharing options:

Screen Shot 2014-12-04 at 8.48.32 AM Screen Shot 2014-12-04 at 8.48.51 AM

Even with the slowness, this poster took me only a few minutes. It is way better than what I could accomplish with powerpoint (which is the lazy way I usually make my posters) and way easier to navigate than something like photoshop (which I have valiantly attempted several times but then always run away screaming).

Here is the finished product:

Book Cafe

This is a great app for students to use when they need to make a visual for a project- from info graphics to posters to invitations, it has got something for all aspects of school life! It is also easy-to-use and free. I will be adding this app to the iPad Lab!

Innovation Design In Education – ASIDE: Seeing Is Believing: Visual vs. Linear Content

Having just finished a project with the Grade 9s where they had to take information they learned about different aspects of WWII and display it in a visual format, I really wish I had read the following article. It would be a very interesting article to take their linear notes and put them side by side with their finished product. As well, the author provides two very useful info graphics on the elements of design I wish I had.

Sigh. Next time.

Innovative design crosses over all aspects of education. The American Society for Innovation Design in Education, or ASIDE, seeks to infuse curriculum with new approaches to teaching and thinking. Integrating the design of information into the daily conversation is an essential part of the teacher’s toolkit and the purpose of the ASIDE blog. The underpinning of innovation and educational design is based on looking at the information available and communicating meaning for a world of learners. Thinking like a designer can transform the way children learn. ASIDE’s goal is to bring together as much information, resources and supportive scholarship in one place for teaching and learning.

Source: theasideblog.blogspot.ca

See on Scoop.itipadyoupad

Creating Infographics with Students

At the moment, Ms. Jackson, English Teacher Extraordinaire, and I are developing a project to accompany the Grade 9 reading of The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak (if you haven’t read this book- you should.It is the best YA around).

The mission is to give them some background info on World War II so that they can put the novel in context.

The first part of the project they are already tackling: I have developed some questions on different aspects of the war (mainly culled from the Encyclopedia Britannica). They have to answer these questions.

The second part is to create an info graphic, or a data visualization for their answers. I wanted to give them some best practices as well as tools they could use for this and, of course, I had to look no further than Silvia Rosenthal Tolisano at Langwitches. Below is her amazingly thorough guide to creating infographics which I am going to be shamelessly using as a reference for my own presentation.


I have been mesmerized by Infographics for a while now. Take a look at my previously written posts. Infographics- What? Why? How? Visual Thinking and Learning in the Classroom What are infographics…

Source: langwitches.org

See on Scoop.itipadyoupad

A Visual Guide To Teaching Students Digital Citizenship Skills – Edudemic

I love the internet. I have been working on this mythical Digital Citizenship toolkit that I hope will essentially give you the tools to do what the following info graphic outlines- how to make a 1:1 correspondence between the curriculum and digital citizenship skills. I love that creator also included Health and wellness (posture when typing, etc.):



Here is a couple of screenshots of my beta site, just to whet your whistle:

Screen Shot 2014-06-27 at 9.46.37 AM Screen Shot 2014-06-27 at 9.46.48 AM

This will be my last post for a while, but hopefully you will see this involve when I get back in August. Have a great summer everybody!


While looking for a better way to start teaching students digital citizenship skills, one teacher decided to make a visual guide herself – and share it!

Source: www.edudemic.com

Copyright Flowchart: Can I Use It? Yes? No? If This… Then…

This is an excellent resource that gives you a clear and concise guide to how to approach using content found on the web. As always Silvia Rosenthal Tolisano from the Langwitches blog serves up a thoughtful, well-designed resource – I am definitely adding this to the copyright section of my Digital Citizenship Toolkit!

See on Scoop.itipadyoupad

It is the responsibility of all educators to model good digital citizenship for their students. Especially when it comes to copyright, plagiarism and intellectual property. The waters are murky. No…

See on langwitches.org

Want to Make your Poster Bigger? Use Block Poster!

One of the useful resources I learned about at the ABQLA conference yesterday was about Block Poster. Remember that pesky problem we were having when we tried to print student info graphics? No longer! Block poster has three steps:

  1. Upload your photo
  2. Decide how big you want it (how many 8.5 x 11sheets wide you want it)
  3. Download the PDF!

I used it to print out some of the infographics from the Sec IV class that they made on the topic of the Glass Ceiling.

Here is how my display looked before:

photo 2

I had printed out the infographics on 8.5 x 11 sheets. One each.

And then I printed three images out with Block Poster and chose to make them only 2 wide (so about 4 pages each):


NOTE: be prepared to have to carefully glue the pieces together, as well as cut off the white border the printer inevitably (?) gives you when you print out an image. Doing this exercise, I learned that I cannot cut straight to save my life (see the rift in the middle of my Digital Literacy Project sign).

I also mounted them on a large piece of black construction paper – this way it was easier to line up and made it sturdier.

On the whole, it looks pretty good:

photo 3-1

Block poster requires no sign up and it is literally as easy as three steps. I can’t say how thrilled I am to now be able to show ace the wonderful infographics being made in the school!


Infographic: The iPad as the Teacher’s Pet

When Ms. Jackson shared this info graphic with me (thanks by the way, Ms. Jackson!), she told me she ended up downloading five apps because of it- I should have asked her which ones…

The one that interests me the most is the Stage Whiteboard– it looks like it enhances Mr. Scruton’s use of the iPad as a document camera by letting you draw over the image you are recording. Hmmm. Expect a review soon!

The iPad as the Teacher

Explore more infographics like this one on the web’s largest information design community – Visually.

See on Scoop.itipadyoupad

The infographic is all about verbs, that is, the things you can do with an iPad. Those actions include showing your screen on a projector, managing th

See on visual.ly