Tag Archives: Inspiration

5th graders are recording narrations for their “Day of the Dead” altars created with Inspiration


Yesterday, I worked with the 5th grade Spanish teacher, Nicole Haleen, to help her students search and cite online images for their Day of the Dead (Día de Los Muertos) altars. They built their altar in Inspiration, as it allowed them to quickly create tiers in order to populate with images and text. Their three tiers represented what the person they were commemorating liked to eat, drink, and do.

After gathering and citing all the images, kids were told to write brief descriptions (in Spanish) for why they chose each image for their altar. To record their voices in Inspiration, students highlighted each image, went up to Tools in the menu bar, scrolled down to Insert video or sound and then over to Record sound. For this recording step, students were told to grab a pair of our Logitech USB microphone headsets. We previously used a different Logitech model that was not as kid-friendly, and the earpieces kept snapping off. Having a microphone headset is a huge advantage as they drastically cut down on ambient noise. Students will probably need to change their input/output sound settings in System Preferences. They will also probably need frequent reminders to do this.

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Social Networking with Great Mathematicians


I worked with 7th Math students today to help them upload a faux profile on our in-house #Elgg social networking site for The Great Mathematican Project. They had to locate an image for the profile, flesh out the About Me, Interests, and Location sections before clicking each of their interests to see which other mathematician also shared that characteristic. They used Inspiration to create a concept map showing how their particular mathematician was connected to other mathematicians (through location, research, number theory, painting, education, etc.) and uploaded these files to their profile as well. Finally, students wrote a couple of blog entries with this character’s voice.


I love teaching and learning, and I was psyched to add to my eclectic body of trivia the following anecdote shared by one of the 7th graders: While working on the lovely and inspiring pyramid for The Louvre, Chinese architect I. M. Pei was spit on by Parisians! I paused the class to talk about the irony of the French denigrating the creator of one of their main attractions.

Read the student’s faux blog post below and the comment by fellow classmate, Stephen Hawking, here:


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