Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Tech Tips Tuesday

What NOT to do with your iPhone 6, and then how to go about fixing it...

My husband spoilt me by getting me the iPhone 6, just after it was released, and went to great lengths to do so as he was interstate at the time, and I was preoccupied with all things reports. It was an awesome feeling to be finally finished the reports and able to crack into my new iPhone, delivered to me by my mother in-law. I loved it at once, and ignored all the bad feedback it was getting about bending in people's pockets. 

My little guy got my iPhone 5 as a hand-me-down and he too was on cloud nine, enjoying all the new possibilities. Life was sweet until... it fell out of my pocket and landed in ... the 'sink'. Ok. So it was the toilet. How can anyone be so careless with something they claim to love so much? I don't know, but what I do know is that in situations such as these, there is no time to pause and contemplate how stupid it was. And so, for those of you who make the same stupid mistake, you have no time to lose. 

Here's what to do:

Step 1: Get the phone out of the toilet. Yes, it's gross, but you have to do it at some point, so just do it.

Step 2: Turn it off. You don't need to watch it die. For me, even though only seconds had passed, the screen was already glitchy, and turning off was easier said than done. Remember that you need to slide along the top of the screen after holding down the power button.

Step 3: If it's in a case, remove it from the case, and wipe it down with toilet paper.

Step 4: Put your phone in a bag of uncooked rice. I put about a cup in a zip lock bag - enough to cover my phone completely.

Step 5: Leave it in the bag to dry out. This is the hardest step. 
Not just a bag of rice!

The results:
After 1 day it had a glitchy screen with white, grey, and black lines and was completely unreadable. I tried to turn it off again and put it back in the bag.
After 2 days the phone needed charging. At first it looked like it was all good, but there was a dark patch in one section, and the text became blurry within a few minutes.
After 4 days, the sceen was great, and functionality was restored, but the sound when holding the phone to the ear, was not. I tried using compressed air to clean the speaker but to no avail. I decided to start using it again anyway, relying on speaker phone when making calls. 

Over the next week, the ear piece went through a stage of buzzing, finally becoming clear and functional. Hooray!

After a quick look at Apple's support website, it appeared that they would be able to fix the problem outside of warranty for just under $400 in Australia. I was seriously considering this option at day 2, but am obviously glad to have been able to wait it out and save the money.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Tech Tips Tuesday

Using Sketch Book Pro and iMovie to Retell a Narrative

As part of our literacy rotations, I have been working with groups to retell a narrative. The activity runs over three 1.5 hour sessions with some overlap of the activities due to student progression.

In the first session we read the narrative as a group. Students then read it to themselves. We discuss the main events and the language used. Students then write the story in their own words in their literacy book and edit this.

In the second session students use Sketchbook Pro on iPads to draw images for the story. Students are equipped with styluses and I demonstrate how to use zoom to improve the quality of illustrations. I explain how to duplicate the page (by clicking on the ++ icon) so that students can modify their previous pages rather than starting from scratch each time.

Once students have illustrated the key events in the story, they import the images to the Photo Library (using the flower/arrow icon). Students then open a new project in iMovie, using the 'Simple' template. They drag the photos into the storyboard in the correct order. I demonstrate how to modify the start and end positions of each image. Students make an audio recording of themselves reading the retell they wrote in the first session. They then modify the length of time each image is displayed to fit with the audio recording. Finally they add titles and share their work with the group using AirPlay.

In the third session all groups present what they have created in the first two sessions.

The second session is very ICT heavy, with a long explanation about the process at the start (with demonstration). Students are engaged in the task and work hard to complete it. For many, this is the first time they have used a stylus with an iPad and they are adjusting to writing/drawing in this format. The resulting movies look quite professional and students are proud of their efforts. I found that if I put more effort into my demonstration, showing how to draw, add colour etc, then students put more effort into their drawings also. I have included my basic demonstration images and video (the story is incomplete).