posted by Susan Tompkins on Apr 30

iPad & iPhone Assist App

Teach & Assess with iPad2 & Cloud Based Instruction.

ASSIST is a FREE iPod Touch/iPad/iPhone app enabling teachers to collect assessment data for summative, common, and formative assessments. The ASSIST app creates a Mobile Teaching and Assessment Platform via your iPad, iPhone, or iPod Touch (all camera based).

Teach and Assess with Blueprints and Footprints.  Download the Assist app here.

Download the scanner sheet and begin using it in your classroom. The sheets can even be laminated (matte finish is best) and reused with wet or dry erase markers. Just when I thought I would never again use a transparency marker, Assist has given them new life!

posted by Susan Tompkins on Nov 13


We are linked up with NASA  during the in-person VC event at Evangel.  Evangel has been using the application, “Distance Learning…as only NASA can” at their school for a while and is gracious enough to share the connection with the rest of us!

NASA offers four different programs through the videoconferencing.  NASA believes in engaging the learner so the process is interactive. NASA believes, “Delivering interactive instruction in support of Long-term retention of knowledge. ”   They are available before, during, and after school as well as Saturday.  The NASA program is willing to be flexible to help out educators with “one-stop shopping.”  You can reach it at http://dln.nasa.govNASA

NASA has on-demand programs as well and can schedule a program for your needs.  You can search by subject, keyword, etc.  One example is their program, “Can Shoeboxes Fly?”   Imagine the strength you can add to your lessons and learning with this resource!  They also offer professional development for educators!  Too cool to miss!

posted by Susan Tompkins on Aug 23


I am excited about all that is offered to educators this autumn!  Starting with the Back to School Webinars, the Stream-A-Thon, and the Virtual Conference the DEN is making available incredible resources to help anyone in their quest to enrich their lessons.  Like I’ve said before, how can educators not be excited about the DEN?  The vast resources and information to be gained is beyond my expectations, not to mention the incredible support we are provided with managers!  Has any other DEN members encountered others who still don’t see the light?  If so, please give me some ideas how to influence their decision-making process.  To me and countless others, the rewards are obvious!

posted by Susan Tompkins on Mar 31

Steve Dembo told us about Prezi a while back and, of course, I had to try it out.  On April 5, Prezi will go fully public.  Prezi  is an exciting new way to create presentations and has been in beta for some time.  They are having a launch party on April 9th at their favorite resting spot in Budapest in case you are interested in attending.  Here is a press release of their significant announcement:

Prezi – The Zooming Presentation Editor

Prezi changes the way you think about presentations. It lets you arrange your ideas and images on a large canvas, where you can zoom around to show details and overview. And it is still very simple to use. Hear what others say about us:

  • “Pretty amazing” – CNET
  • “Love at first use” – User praise
  • “Astonishing presentation tool” – Core77

After a year in intensive private beta development, Prezi is going public on April 5. Please visit and start to convince, amaze and take the day.

For press inquiries please contact

Sign up for an account and let me know how wonderful you think it is!

posted by Susan Tompkins on Oct 11

Okay, in today’s Web 2.0 world, something like the telephone probably takes a backseat.  Think again.  About 18 months ago, I read a blog about an internet telephony device that helps communicate with lots of people in very little time.  It is called Phonevite and I have been telling everyone of its virtues!

The beautful thing about Phonevite, other than its fantastic time-saving, is that it has a free package.  They love educators and have made Phonevite readily available to us!  Although the free package allows up to 25 calls in one session, I am able to call all of my 130 students within a matter of minutes.  I have categorized them by class, so the limit does not really affect the performance!

Phonevite is such a useful tool that last year our principal purchased an Education package that is used to call absentees every day to notify parents of a student’s absence.  Without a doubt, the calling ability of this system is phenomenal.  In three steps, you record, select the numbers to call, and send voice messages to everyone.

It is so easy to use, a freshman student running for class president set up an account and used it to call his “constituents” before the election!  It truly came to my rescue when during hurricane Gustav, we were surprised with school closings.  I used the system to record my Assistant Principal’s message and sent out phone calls to every teacher, support, custodial, and cafeteria staff member of our school.  It saved immeasurable time and was a huge blessing!

For educators, it is a great idea to use to remind students of projects and assignments as well as keeping parents informed of class events.  The feedback from parents is always positive.  So check it out and use this service that is a wonderful marriage between telephones and telephony!

posted by Susan Tompkins on Jul 23

Today’s hot topic on a few channels is SlyDial. It connects you directly to someone’s voicemail, even if they have their phone on and ready to receive calls. Why would you want to do this? A couple of reasons come to mind. Their website states that “because you are short on time, want to avoid an awkward conversation, or don’t want to bother someone.” It also suggests that if you want to make a call when you know someone is probably asleep, and you don’t want to wake them, SlyDial would be a good way to do that. I am thinking of the times that you may need to get a message to a parent but are short on time and cannot devote time for a lengthy conversation, then this product would be a practical solution.   Their website states that prepaid phones will not handle this service, so beware.  Let me know if you can think of any other uses. I am curious!

posted by Susan Tompkins on Jul 19

scott handshakeDuring the past week, I have been exposed to new people, ideas and tools.
The LC Institute proved another valuable experience in my effort to bring my classroom in Louisiana to another level of learning.

hallThanks to several presenters for free tools that are available to use in education. Of particular interest is the site that Steve Dembo illustrated during his session where live feeds can be sent to and from your classroom with mogulus.

During the last day’s rotations, Howard Martin presented an incredible display of how quickly he taught himself the features on mogulus, so much that I am inspired to use it sooner rather than later. Many thanks to all my buddies who are now in my annual photo updates. Below are a few I have shared.

dwane dciwakey

posted by Susan Tompkins on Jul 15

Well, my session on God or Goddess Complex – It’s All In The Numbers is finished. We had a great time together learning about Blabberize. We shared ideas and worked well together, which is always the case with DEN members. During the session we used our LA Rulers, thanks to my ladder-falling-breaking-leg husband, to measure our facial features, blabberizing about it, and using Word to make our faces symmetrical.

When it came down to finding what our numbers were, we had a teachable moment thanks to Rita. After our numbers were revealed, we seemed to have a Goddess in our midst. When Rita’s number came out one one-thousandth from a perfect 1.618 we were ecstatic! We had never been in the presence of deity like this! After much ado about our discovery, it seems that during the presentation a certain someone got off task and, can you believe, fudged her measurements! It must have been her deity status that caused her random numbers to generate a virtually perfect, golden number.

Any session is great when the people are honest and willing to try something new, so hat’s off to all who attended and if you know of someone who is a REAL God or Goddess, please send them our way! An easy link is for some of the materials I’ve uploaded. If you have any questions or comments about the session, please leave a comment or email me.  Check out Our Fav Blabber by clicking the lower left arrow.

posted by Susan Tompkins on May 25

I have been looking into ways to bounce back spam emails to the creatures that sent it.  My main email has somehow landed in the hands of spammers and while it is capable of directing the spam to the designated folder, I want to create havoc on those initiating the sordid and often unintelligent messages.  So, if anyone has a good (free) solution to this dilemma, please post it on the blog.  Thanks for any tips or ideas to get me started on my quest to rid my mailbox of unwanted items.

posted by Susan Tompkins on Apr 28

until our state GPS Tour to be held in New Orleans on Saturday, June 7. Perhaps not what you were thinking when I wrote “counting the days” but I am also counting the days until school ends (and until my cruise). I always have a pensive moment when looking toward the end of the school year. Bittersweet I suppose. Anyway, back to New Orleans. Our team of STAR DE’s from the N.O. area are working on a spectacular event so if anyone is interested and in the area, go to our state blog and read about the event. We promise it will be an energetic learning experience for all attendees. In case you haven’t been using Wufoo for your surveys (thanks Steve) it is easy to set up with the templates and is a great way to impress everyone.

Theme Design by Deeogee. Key West Kayaking Sedona Scenic Drives South Beach Galleries