Friday, March 14, 2008

USB Delight

Update: I learned about the Muvo from Barry Bachenheimer's blog where he posted ideas about how to use this great tool. Check it out!

It's often incredibly difficult keeping track of all our tech toys' chargers and cables. Do you have that problem? I know I waste too much time trying to locate everything when I need it. Those who know me can attest to the fact I'm not the most organized person, but I still try to put everything in it's place, if I can determine what that place is. Matching the chargers and the cables with the technology is challenging at best.

Enter two gadgets that fit my needs, NO chargers, NO cables, just a USB connection!

How cool is that?

I already own The Flip video camera and can not recommend it to educators highly enough. The Flip runs on double AA batteries, connects to any computer with a USB connection, installs it's own software, easily fits in a purse and is incredibly easy to use with surprisingly good quality videos. List price is $180.00 for 60 minutes of video. It's an indispensable tool:
  1. To demonstrate student progress - Record student progress over time; upload the videos and you have objective proof of improvement
  2. To share information - Record student performance for the team to view at an IEP meeting
  3. To Reflect on student presentations - students view themselves post-oral presentation to reflect on how they did and what they would change
  4. To use to record a field trip for later posting on the class wiki for family viewing at home.
  5. To Capture successes in the classroom
  6. For writing prompts - Record various scenarios
  7. As a memory enhancer - Capture audio directions for later review and repetition. Playback can occur either online, by uploading the video, or by the student reviewing on the Flip itself, at their desk
  8. Math Support Tool - Capture math instruction and allow the student to review the instruction when they need it
  9. Curriculum Support Tool - don't stop at math - use it in all curriculum areas!
  10. Social Story Creator - Use your Flip to create social stories in the classroom
I just learned about the second tool this week and can't wait to buy this. It's the MuVo v100, a $50
MP3 player with lyric display, playback options, voice recorder and direct USB connection
Plug your MuVo into the computer USB port and simply drag and drop your music or files directly into your MuVo - no cables needed!
I especially love the idea of the voice recorder feature with the USB connection. Anything with a direct USB connection wins major points for product design in my book.

Check these tools out - you won't be disappointed.


Barry Bachenheimer said...

Hi Karen,

I highly recommend the MuVos (I blogged about it at - was that where you picked up the tip?)

Tons of good uses in the classroom!

Barry Bachenheimer

Karen Janowski said...

Yes, it was from your blog. I'll update my blog to reflect that. A few days passed after reading your blog before I had a chance to write my post and I couldn't remember where I read about teh Muvo - thanks for refreshing my memory. Next time I'll Jott myself so I don't forget!

Gail Desler said...

Hello Karen - and Barry,

I purchased a MuVo a few iterations back. The voice recording capability was too poor to use for podcasting. What's the recording quality like with the v100?

I like the price!
Gail Desler

Samuel said...

There is something so nice about drag and drop. I really think that more interfaces should have options like that.

Anonymous said...

See the discounts for educators:

Ken Pendergrass said...

I've blogged about Flip Video and issues for Mac Users and iMovie'08:
Flip Video and iMovie08

This should shed some light how you can transfer Flip video files into iMovie'08 with some freeware help...