Sue Waters Blog

July 28, 2007
by Sue Waters
4 Comments

For all the lovers of creating comics ToonDoo has added ability to make ToonBooks

After a very busy week it is nice to catch up with my online world. Normally I read new posts daily but this week got the better of me.

Reading webomatica’s My Blogging Reality Check reminded me that ToonDoo had made my Blog, Wikis and Podcasts comic had made Editor’s pick this week. This comic explains why I blog (although would be nice to be rich and famous – but that is not going to happen). So I thought I would go to ToonDoo to see how many views the comic got (not that I am competitive but my 8 year old son’s comic was uploaded the same time months ago and was made Editor’s pick back then – yes I was very proud of him).

While I was at ToonDoo I spotted that they have just added ToonBooks to their site. What a great tool for using with students. Great work ToonDoo.

Sorry ToonDoo, could not work out how to embed in Edublogs so have included a couple of screenshots, I am sure that Rajendran will read this post and come past to tell me the trick for Edublogs :). Meanwhile check out Rajendran’s great ToonBook on ToonBook – How To! at ToonDoo and get creating. As 8 yr old son is really sick today I should get a head start on creating my own ToonBooks before him.

toonbook.jpg

toonbook1.jpg

June 5, 2007
by Sue Waters
11 Comments

Tools of the Trade

tool2.jpgDarren at Drape’s Take did an excellent post today on Why Every Teacher Should Have A Google Account. This is a list of basic tools that I recommend to lecturers:

Bookmarking

Definitely a bookmarking site is a must. It is so great to be able to bookmark a website online that you can then view from any computer. I just love the fact that where ever I am I can go yes I remember reading an article on a particular topic and pull up my del.icio.us site and locate the articles I want to read without having to relocate the article again (and normally I fail to locate the original article). You can also set up del.icio.us sites with students so that they can collaboratively bookmark sites to select the top sites for information on topics.

However if you are going to bookmark using del.icio.us I suggest you:

  1. Use tags that have meaning e.g podcasting, PodcastingEquipment (if you put a space between Podcasting and Equipment you will have two separate tags and Equipment to me may also mean aquaculture equipment. Alternatively you could separate with an underscore Podcasting_Equipment)
  2. Sort your tags by setting up bundles and put your tags into the correct bundles – this way you can located the articles you want to read easier)
  3. If you are using Firefox as your browser there is a new cool Add-on for del.icio.us. If you are not using Firefox then think about installing it because it is a great Browser, I now use it more than Internet Explorer.

If you want to know more about using del.icio.us check out my information on getting more out of del.ici.ous.

Wiki

I like using wikis as a quick and easy web site to share information with others. They are also excellent for encouraging collaborative learning between students. Personally I like using Wikipaces because their wiki is very easy to use and they have excellent customer service. If you want to know more about using wikis check out my information on getting more out of wiki.

Blog

I like both blogger (easy to use) and edublogs for blogging. I strongly recommend that you download and use Microsoft Livewriter which makes writing blog posts so much easier; and what a fanastic program. I had a hard time getting into blogging until I watched the following videos on blogging: Video: Blog History – shorten version and Long Video : Blogumentary – (1 hour) Thanks to Kate from Waxlyrical blog for recommending these videos. Check out Vicki Davis’s at Cool Cat Teacher’s blog tips on how to be an incredible blogger. While I agree with Darren about the value of teacher’s blogging I do think that Derek’s thoughts on online participation that for new people starting by commenting on blogs may be a good starting point.

Podcasting

I use Podomatic for podcasting however occasionally use Odeo. I prefer podomatic because it gives me a great podcast page which Odeo doesn’t. There are things about podomatic that I don’t like. For ideas for setting up a podcast page check out my podcast site aquaculturepda.podomatic.com

Comics

I have used two different free comic makers ToonDoo and Comeeko. No reason other than it is fun!!!!

ToonDoo is really easy to use (as they made it easy for kids to use) and they have lots of great characters, backgrounds and props that you can use. Basically anyone can easily create nice comics using ToonDoo – great fun for all ages – my 8 year old really enjoyed using ToonDoo as do I. The only issue I have had with ToonDoo is embedding my comics into my blog posts, these are my instructions on how to embed ToonDoo comics into an edublog blog.

The difference between ToonDoo and Comeeko is that with Comeeko you can use your own photos to make the comic. Comeeko is considerably harder to use than ToonDoo however a lot of fun because you use your own photos (which is very appealing).

Photosharing

Finally started to appreciate the value of photosharing and now am using Flickr.

Google

I am definitely a Google addict. Here is my list of Google MUSTS:

1. Personalized google homepage

I have set up my own personalized google homepage. If you haven’t give it a try. All you need to do is set up a Google account and then click on “Personalize this page” at the top of Google. You can add lots of little cool gadgets to the page (e.g. “to do list”, news feeds, Weather information, world clock, Google video) and whatever computer you are on you can sign into your personalized Google and access the items on the page (if you become too addicted you can add extra tabs – yes I know I need a life).

2. Google Reader

I use Google reader to subscribe to blogs and podcasts feeds. It is really easy to use, and I can put a gadget for it on my Personalized google homepage that shows me the latest 9 blogs and podcasts. Also I love how people are embedding Google Reader in their blogs and sharing their items that they like from their reader. I was totally unable to get into blogging until I started appreciating the value of blogs by subscribing to blogs using Google Reader

3. Google Talk

I use Google Talk for chatting with others but prefer Skype for VOIP. OOPS occassionally with Google Talk I have sent the wrong chat to the wrong person. If you don’t have a VOIP application on your computer. Definitely a must – you can talk or chat to anyone, anywhere, using the Internet, at no cost.

4. Google Video

I prefer to upload videos to google video if I want to embed them in wikis or blogs.

BTW I keep failing Vicki Davis’s 3 Rule of 10 habits of bloggers that winRULE 3 Write and then cut in half! :) There is no hope for me? :D

April 22, 2007
by Sue Waters
1 Comment

Never work with kids…. or husband!

Absolutely unbelievable. First my son Liam’s ToonDoo comic is more popular than mine (238 views as well as making Editor’s pick) and now my husband, who has only posted once on his site, “The blog of a technology widower” has been written about on another person’s site. What can I say, speechless, luckily I can still type!

Letting it all go…..Gabriella after reading my post on ToonDoo checked it out and obviously had some fun as she made her own comic. I believe she has written that ToonDoo is really easy to use! And she has yet again given me a fabulous link to a site, Comeeko, where you can make comics from your photos. Absolutely brilliant, this means I can now easily create comics from characters, using ToonDoo, or if I want to use my own photos I can use Comeeko.

ToonDoo is a lot easier to use than Comeeko. I love the fact that when they designed ToonDoo software they created it so that kids could easily use – these means that it works so easily and well for anyone. However I like the fact that you can use your own photos with Comeeko and you can download your finished comic onto your computer then easily insert your comic into your blog without having to mess around with code.

From my point of view they are both excellent free online comic creators. Definitely you should give both a try – lots of fun!

dave1comic.jpg

April 18, 2007
by Sue Waters
2 Comments

Update on popularity of Liam’s ToonDo comic

Unbelievable! All I can say is never work with kids. To encourage Liam to create comics using ToonDo I said I would post his comic on my blog and I even warned people to be nice as he is only 8. As it is his first adventure into making his own comics online today he was keen to see how many views his comic has had.

Prior to this ToonDude had sent me an email letting me know that one of my comics had been featured on their homepage. Thought ok will check that out later.

Imagine my shock, and incredible laughter, to realise that Liam’s comic on safety is the featured comic and has so far had 77 views. And mine? (49 views).

I should have known better. His digital story on my podcast site has also been popular and rates higher than Where is Sue? I just have to accept that my kids are the stars my audience wants to listen to! For me the most positive outcome is it has inspired him to create more comics – so thanks ToonDude!

Read my “how to” tips if you are struggling to embed ToonDoo Comics in an Edublog blog.

UPDATE
You can now make ToonBooks as wells as comics at ToonDoo.

liams.jpg

April 17, 2007
by Sue Waters
5 Comments

How to Embed ToonDoo comics in Edublog blogs as a scrollable flash

Yesterday, I checked out ToonDoo and created my first comic. Unfortunately I had a bit of a problem embedding it into my Edublog blog so the nice people from ToonDoo helped me out.

Here are my instructions on how to do it so you can also enjoy the benefits of adding ToonDoo comics to your edublog blog.

Step 1: Click on the embed swf icon.

swf.jpg

Step 2: Insert the following code into the swf popup box but make sure you change the username and the toonID to your username and the toonID of your comic.

toonid.jpg
http://toondoo.com/viewEmbed.swf? imgPath=http://toondoo.com/public/dswaters/toons/cool-cartoon-9055.jpg & goURL=http://toondoo.com/View.toon?param=9055

However make sure that there are not spaces in your code (e.g. remove any spaces when you copy my code as it needs to be all as on word to work. While it may not be obvious the image below of the code is one word:

swfcode.jpg

This is how your code should look in the popup box.
swfpopup.jpg

Step 3: Click ok. You will now have a box open up to ask you for the width of the flash. Enter 450 for width and click ok.
swfwidth.jpg
Step 4: Now you will have a box open up for height- enter height as 320

swfheight.jpg
I hope this has been of some help to you. Happy Toondoing!

While I was writing these instructions my son created the following comic he wants to share with you. Please remember he is only 8. For me what an excellent way for him to work on spelling, writing and creative skills.
[swf width="450" height="320"]http://toondoo.com/viewEmbed.swf?imgPath=http://toondoo.com/public/dswaters/toons/cool-cartoon-9223.jpg&goURL=http://toondoo.com/View.toon?param=9223[/swf]

April 16, 2007
by Sue Waters
2 Comments

ToonDoo – Create your own Comics

Yes, perhaps it may look like I have too much time on my hands but I am on holiday so decided to catch up on reading other people blogs. Over the last few weeks I have kept coming across people inserting cartoons in their blogs but had not paid it much attention until I went back and re-read What are holidays for anyway? (Obviously I am not the only who catches up on things during weeks off).

So I followed the link to ToonDoo – what a great site. Take a few seconds to sign up. And unlike some online applications – it is so easy to use. You can create one, two or three panel comics. There are lots of great characters to choose from, lots of great scenery and props you can add. Creating a comic is really easy with ToonDoo. In fact it is probably the easiest online application I have ever used. The hardest task was coming up with an idea to put into a comic. So please go to ToonDoo and give it a try – have some fun being creative!

Unfortunately the hardest thing was getting it to fit properly in this blog! Thankfully the nice guys at ToonDoo stepped in and gave me some great advice on how to make it work as a flash in my site.

So,take the time! Be creative by making your own comics at ToonDoo

[swf width="450" height="320"]http://toondoo.com/viewEmbed.swf?imgPath=http://toondoo.com/public/dswaters/toons/cool-cartoon-9055.jpg&goURL=http://toondoo.com/View.toon?param=9055[/swf]