3D in the classroom

The claim that 3D can result in higher test scores makes me cringe!!! Arghz

I had an interesting email today from our installs team leader, it read:

3D projectors are now priced at pretty much the same level as normal 2D units, and are of course backwards compatible. If we started offering them to schools, how much of a pain would it be to upgrade existing PC’s to be capable of projecting in 3D?

Naturally computers should begin supporting 3D natively, most Nvidia graphics cards already do and intel have it on their roadmap.

The life span of a projector is 3 to 5 years max, will there be enough 3D content within 3/5 years to warrant purchasing a 3D projector?

Yes and no.  So much interactive educational content will be provided as Flash objects and Flash simply can’t do it.  The thing is if a 3D projector is going to be the industry standard then that will increase the demand on 3D content creators and more 3D content will be created.  I would rather see a lower price point for projectors instead of trying to cram technology in that the consumer hasn’t requested.

Does a 3D projector have the same lifespan of the equally matched 2D projector?

In theory yes, although 3D bulbs will be way more expensive to replace.

Will the quality actually be as good from a DLP unit?

No, you are way better off with an LCD unit.

Does 3D matter in a classroom?

You decide.

What applications will be useful in 3D?

Interactive gaming, 3D story time.  Nasa released an immersive 3D game so content is coming, but it is all full of it’s own barriers IE registration, installation, bla bla.

Do these projector require glasses?


How many bulbs are there?

2 bulbs would mean twice the cost.  3D projectors on the market at the moment have one bulb and it is likely to stay that way.

What about kids that only have one eye that works(monocular)?   Will we be excluding them?

Yes from any/all 3D content.  It will simply look awful.

What about kids that aren’t sat directly in front of the IWB?

3D viewing angles aren’t great.  That is why when you go to watch a 3D film at the cinema nearly everyone wants the top-centre seats.  On one of the videos below the teacher is literally stood 1ft to the side of the board and pretending to still be able to make out 3D content, this simply isn’t realistic as the below image illustrates:

How will the signal look if its passed over VGA not HDMI?

I would recommend using a HDMI cable to transfer the signal, that will probably mean running new cables and installing a new break out box.

I stumbled upon this blog post which included the below video, kudos to the author.  Sorry if I covered some items you already covered!

3D projectors have been at BETT for years and not caught on.

Should you buy a 3D DLP projector and hope to get a better experience or value than a 2D LED projector?

No.  Don’t do it.  Wait another year or two.  We need manufacturers to reduce the price of projectors, not try to sell us a technology we don’t really need/want.

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Another step towards mobile for the classroom

One of the frequent arguments used to cast out the use of Mobile phones in classrooms is the lack of charger or short battery life. No longer is that an issue…

The Airnergy WiFi Harvesting Charger “absorbs” power from your schools wireless network into a battery which can be used to charge devices such as mobile phones or PDA’s using a mini USB connection.

One of the best things about this is that any device that won’t use USB2 connectivity will be excluded. Hopefully this will encourage manufacturers to adopt more standards.
Of course that’s a dig at apple…

Quest for the perfect camera for the Primary School classroom of 2010

I want to find the perfect camera for your classroom, I don’t expect to find a one size suits all type solution.

Challenge CLC have been extremely kind in funding this project and Bradford schools have been more then happy to write a review based on their experiences with the different cameras. My plan is to rotate the cameras between schools and classrooms to get multiple reviews on each camera.

We are buying 10 cameras and reviewing them over the next few weeks. Also thanks to @Raff31, @LordLangley73 and @DeerWood for their input. We will be using this document for suggestions on ways to use these cameras.

Our shortlist (of which we probably need to remove 1/2):

  1. Kodak Zi6 (£90)
  2. *Kodak Zi8 (£120)
  3. Toshiba Camelio P30 (£115)
  4. Panasonic SDR S15 (£160)
  5. +/ Apple iPod Nano 8GB 5Th generation (£105)
  6. / Zoom Q3 (£200)
  7. Veho VCC 002 (£100)
  8. Panasonic SDR S26 (£163)
  9. Kodak Zx1 (£70)
  10. *Sanyo VPC CG10EBK / Xacti (£145)
  11. / Mustek DV316L (£38)
  12. / Samsung U10 (£83)
  13. Veho VCC-001 (£90) (Not sure on this one because its designed for youtube)
  14. m/ Sony MHS-PM1 (£130)
  15. / Creative Vado (£54)
  16. / Creative Vado HD (£90)
  17. Vivitar DVR 545 (£70)
  18. +/ *Flip Video Ultra High Definition Camcorder 8GB (£120)
  19. +/ Flip Video Ultra Camcorder 2nd Generation 4GB (£90)

And a bit controversial:

  1. Actioncam Action Video Camera (£28)
  2. +Veho VCC-003 Muvi (£50)

* = Comes highly recommended
/ = Stunning design
+ = Built in memory (Enough to record video)
m = Special memory required

Which would you remove? Has anyone seen any info on an action video camera being used in a classroom before? Does this seem completely silly? I like Silly, do you?

Removing the first bunch..

Getting my list down was painfully difficult, I wanted to try as many cameras as possible but some where too expensive or not suitable and my budget is limited!

Here is are the camcorders I removed and reasons for removing them:

  1. Panasonic SDR S15 (£160) — too expensive
  2. Panasonic SDR S26 (£163) — too expensive
  3. Zoom Q3 (£200) too expensive
  4. Vivitar DVR 545 (£70) — out of stock
Total amount to spend is now only £1440 for cameras and £195 for memory cards! Bargain for 17 cameras! Now to see if we can get that level of funding! 🙂

10 Android Apps for Primary School

To use an Android phone in your classroom you will find a great deal already available to you on the device however you will probably want to get some applications from the market…

To get an application simply goto your home page on the device, Click Android Market, search for one of the below apps:

FEATURED – Classdroid is an app I work on.  It is open source and free.  It is used as a simple assessment app where a teacher takes a picture of a pupils piece of work, grades it and assigns it to a pupil.  The work is then uploaded to the pupils learning portfolio.  Visit here to find out more about Classdroid

1. Zebra Paint – Paint with your fingers! Pick your favorite color and paint the image. Use the menu button to pick one of the dozen built-in templates. When ready, save your images and share with the world! Tested with 4 to 5 year old kids. Requires a touch screen.

2. Maths Workout – Test your mental maths and exercise your brain once a day. Maths Workout is a daily routine for thousands of players worldwide – both young and old. Get competitive! Play the World Challenge and submit your score for ranking with other players around the world.

3. Brain Genius Deluxe – Get a head start to getting smart by playing through a daily dose of teasing and original brain exercises. Brain Genius Deluxe is the Android game to train your brain, with 24 touch and motion-controlled games as well as bonus puzzles including Sudoku! It’s pure Genius!

4. WordPlayer Art of War – WordPlayer is a book reader that allows you to add to your library from amongst thousands of instantly downloadable books or load epub books. WordPlayer’s page navigation, highlighting, bookmarking, and customizable settings make reading a breeze. Comes with Sun Tzu’s classic book of strategy, Art of War, already installed.

5. My Maps Editor by Google – Create, edit, share, and view personalized maps on your phone synchronized with the My Maps tab on Google Maps. We provide full editing functionality for markers, lines, and shapes, plus you can mark your location using GPS or attach a photo directly from your phone.

6. WikiMobile Encyclopedia – Being a walking encyclopedia is now at your fingertips. With WikiMobile, you carry 2+ million Wikipedia articles with you, including pictures. Faster and uses just a fraction of the network data vs. the Android browser. Download free for a limited time!

7. Google Sky Map Google Sky Map: A star map for Android. Google Sky Map turns your Android-powered mobile phone into a dynamic window on the night sky. When you point your phone up you will see a map of the brightest stars, constellations, and planets in that part of the sky.

8. Pintail (not educational but useful) – Lost your pho
ne? Find it with an SMS: Pintail replies automatically with your phone’s location to a PIN protected message. Let friends and family ea

sily find out where you are by sharing your PIN number with them: They send an SMS, Pintail replies with your location.

9. School Email (UK only as of yet) – You don’t need to download this! School Email is the easiest and safest service for emailing between pupils and teachers. Pupils emails are checked for sexual predators and bullying. The service runs over Activsync which means pupils are always “up to date”.

10. Keepy Uppy – If you are struggling getting young boys who enjoy football(soccer) to use their device you may want to think about using an app such as Keepy Uppy as a reward for good work.