I always seem to be full of more ideas than I have hours to follow through. I don’t want to lose those ideas, because I may return to them when the time is right. Previously, I wrote about having a mission statement to focus your purpose for using technology for education. Capturing Perplexity is the first main idea of Dan Meyer’s mission statement; when you have those great ideas, you want to capture them!
When I regularly capture my ideas, even when I don’t do anything with them, my ideas continue to flow. Capturing your ideas first begins with listening to your inner voice (see also Finding and Organizing Inspirational Sources and Effective Internet Searching). My inner voice speaks to me when I’m driving, running, and showering. I need a way to save those thoughts, and I’m starting to give up my confetti of hand-written slips of paper and embrace some less-mess technology methods for holding on to those ideas.
Let's look at some ways to capture your ideas:
Sometimes your ideas may be inspired by a real-world image. This is the perfect opportunity to pull out your smart phone and make use of the camera in your pocket. New to this? Check out this Perplexity Tutorial to see how to get your picture from your camera to your computer.
I have notes pages on my iPad mini for many different projects. Whenever I have a thought that pertains to something I’m working on, I add a sentence to that note – sometimes even by using the voice feature. When I’m ready to host that meeting, plan that lesson, or write a blog entry, I’ve already captured all my thoughts and I’m ready to go.
You can do something similar with Google Docs, or another of the many cloud storage systems, where you can organize files and notes similarly to how they would appear on your computer. The benefit of this is that it is accessible from any computer with internet access. Watch the Perplexity Tutorial for Google Docs.
Sometimes my ideas ‘live’ on the internet. I want to capture them so that they are accessible. Many of us have had the experience of trying to use a video with a class, only to find that it’s blocked or the connection cannot support the speed required to play the video. Also to consider is the other content that might pop up when you play a video from a source such as YouTube. Comments under the video and other video suggestions may be content you would never consider sharing with the class, but when you click to the video you want to show, there they are.
You can avoid this by downloading the video. It’s as simple as cutting and pasting the URL of the video you want to capture into the bar on a video capturing site. I’ve used CatchVideo. KeepVid is another popular choice; you can watch the Perplexity YouTube Tutorial to help you feel comfortable. Capturing a video does not mean that you own it. It violates the Terms of Service of, for example, YouTube. You are, however, using a short piece for non-commercial, educational purposes where access would otherwise be impeded.
Tech Tips for Teachers