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Marija Petreska: Last Minute Microsoft Love


 by Marija Petreska
Expert Educator Columnist, Macedonia

I know it is the very last minute for Valentine’s Day classroom tips and ideas, but Friday is always reserved for me and I could not but share my love for Microsoft. Shall we start! I’ll go by favorites, so my first activity will naturally be of PowerPoint. Sorry OneNote and Office Mix you can never beat first love.

1. PowerPoint
It is more than obvious that I’ll suggest creating Valentine’s cards in PowerPoint but not so obvious what to do with them. Why not make it with a hidden secret message for the receiver. Many were interested of augmented reality on the Heroes of the OneNote Based Teaching call. And here is a how to step by step guide for creating Valentine’s Day cards and overlay them with some augmented reality.

It is still minus one in Macedonia so most of our cards are wintry

And hopefully spring will eventually come

A how to create it guide

Next step is creating an overlay. This time we’ll use Layar. Once you create an account go to Layar creator

Create a new campaign

import an image

and overlay it

My advice is to overlay it with contact information like Facebook or Twitter account (how to reach me card). But if the sender wants to go incognito (in this case you might need to be the postman just collect all the cards  and make sure they reach their destination as long as all your students’ Valentine’s come to your school) then add a Soundcloud recording of a favorite song, a favorite video or movie clip, or a voice message. But if you want to make it both fun and educational add one of these TedEd videos.

They’ll need to install Layar app and scan the postcards to see the magic.

2. OneNote
Create a collaborative Valentine’s Day OneNote notebook. My first idea (and still not abandoning it) was to fill it with famous poems read by your students (was counting on Neruda’s I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where..) and the full collection of Love Letters of Great Men read by students (hmm, Beethoven’s famous ever thine, ever mine, ever ours). But I found somewhat more interesting site for this generation. It’s called a Poetweet and it turns your tweets into a poem and you can even chose between

I went with a sonnet and here it is

Have all your students make a section and clip the poems into the notebook in a simple step with OneNote clipper
3. Office Mix
The game is called His Story/Her Story and it is something I have written of previously in the Mix a Tube and Sway It . Do a lip sync on famous short animated films like
Blue Umbrella (you have to see this one and the music, oh)

or Paperman (I’m sure you have seen it before)

Girls will be making one video and boys another. Girls will be telling her story and boys his story. We did this last Valentine’s Day but that was before I knew of Office Mix so we used EDpuzzle. If you want to try it make sure  your students have created teacher accounts since students’ accounts are for assignments only and they won’t be able to add voice over the video nor leave audio notes. Here is our Paperman example.

4. Sway
Create a Missing Person Announcement Sway of the one you love. Every Missing Person Announcement goes with an image of the missing person. So why not take an image of their Valentine’s face silhouette (have a white background and use any photo editor to create black and white version of it, upload it to Tagxedo in the shape section) and create a word cloud (using Tagxedo)with her/his name or first letters or favorite couplet, or movie line he/she likes…

And they have to include a text. The title is
Have you seen my Valentine
She/He was last seen include a Bing map of her whereabouts (describe the place she/he was last seen like in the schoolyard right under the tree I stole my first kiss. Right where you can see the whole school and you are concealed enough so no one can see you.)
She/He has got (now describe her/him in the smallest detail like She has got a hair of the color of burnt orange, like a warm summer sun on my shoulders, that smells like a pumpkin pie out of my mother’s oven or warm honeyed tea. Her eyes are as if blue and green agreed on a new shade only she can poses. Her eyelashes as shutters that open and close with such rapidity that makes my head spin.)
When I last saw her/him now describe what she/he wore(someone in love would know everything form shoe size to nail polish )
She/He likes (now include a detail that only one in love knows like she likes to run her fingers into her hair exactly seventeen times on a forty minute lesson)

5. Qik
Create short treasure hunt videos with hints where you may have put the cards or chocolate or a present using Qik.

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