OFF WE GO!!!!
The journey started at BETT- I watched for about an hour, it seemes OK, I thought to myself, I loved the dual pen function, the tool history, the integration of expression… but lurking in the back of my mind was THE question… how will I train 250 staff to use it so they are competant and confident in August?
So, step 1 started, become familiar with it myself. Easier said than done I thought, until I found a handy brochure which told me I could download a beta version at home. (www.prometheanplanet.com/freesoftware) and I started to play…. and play… and play…..
To be honest, it’s all very well watching someone else demonstrate (and I must remember that when training!) It certainly seemed straightforward at BETT, but it is easy for a demonstrator to choose what to do next based on their own comfort zones. The proof of the pudding is in the using. and use it I am. First the tutorials on Activlearning website helped me to get a basic understanding of the new features. Next the migration form Activstudio to Inspire and likewise from Primary to Inspire.
Jan 21st… 9.06pm Oh Promethean, sometimes I love you and sometimes I hate you…..
OK- Focus- back to the job in hand. I havr trawled throught the Promethean planet forum. (you really should do this if you are interested in the new software). I have read all the tricks of overcoming the differences, marvelled at the new bits…. more playing necessary
thoughts so far.
- I love the grid designer- it is much easier to use with loads of new features, rather than having to adapt a premade on. I’ve not fathomed the several layers of grids yet, but I am sure I will see a need for it at some point! But I couldnt take a snapshot of it- I had to open ActivPrimary to do it!
- Page background, would like an extra button which says “put on all pages of this flipchart, even those I have not made yet!”
- Where has my right click on the pen tool gone?- that is the teachers’ favourite here!
- I am really glad the eraser erases, rather than covering items with a layer.
- It’s really cool that you can draw whilst in spotlight mode- the whole tool is much more user friendly and useful in the classroom now.
- Is it me, or is the writing a bit neater?
- The bin now has a red arrow which means it is a little more obvious for some staff to put things in. (although you would think most staff knew what a bin was for!)
- The new text box is more obvious with the microsoft feel to it and command for ‘text here’. The select all in the newly located toolbar is great- saves wallowing around a page with loads of text! The handles are larger and when you drag text from the Internet it uses the most recent font style on the flipchart- so no more nasty small text which needs oodles of altering. Hurray!
- I would sttill like the option of a scientific calculator for out top primary children,
- The resource library has some improved features. I like the customisation of the size of different sections, and the way when you drag a picture in it automatically scrools to the next one. I don’t like the way the top of the toolbar keeps getting lost under the page title bar, so I cannot grab it, and have to go back to full screen mode to be able to move it.
- I am getting used to the actions and properties, and it seems sensible to lump them all together.
- The transparency slider is great, saves lots of space on the page.
- Will we be able to save files as older flipcharts?
- I would love to be able to print flipcharts as you can powerpoint- ie 3 to a page, 6 to a page etc.
So overall, thumbs up, tyhere are a few tweaks still to go, but I hear the development team are working on them. It feels a more smooth piece of software to use with less anomalities than its predecessor.
Well done Promethean.
just had steph from Promethean to visit- she showed me a top trick- exporting individual words from text boxes- VERY cool! Staff will love that!