Mr. Kamrowski

"Let us put our minds together and see what life we can make for our children." –Sitting Bull

Coffee & iPads 10-31-17

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Coffee and iPads

October 31st, 2017

Good morning and happy Halloween! Haven’t quite nailed down that amazing costume idea for the Halloween party tonight? Try this, hold the home button on your iPad and ask Siri “What should I be for Halloween?” If you don’t like the answer, try it a few times and she’ll give you new ideas. Also, ask her “Trick or Treat” and see what happens. Today, I want to look at the powers of Siri; and not just to entertain. There are some real important things that Siri can help you and your students do.

Alt text

Turn Siri On

  • Go to settings—>General—>Accessibility—>Siri and make certain “Always On” is selected. You can also select to type to Siri (This is new to iOS 11).
  • Then go to Siri & Search—>turn on press home for Siri and allow Siri When Locked. I’ll let you decide if you want Siri to respond when you say the command words “Hey Siri.”
  • When these settings are turned on you can access Siri by holding the home button. You can also say “Hey Siri” if you turned this feature on.

What Can Siri Do?

Most I Use

  • Siri can open apps for you. I turn “Hey Siri” on so all I need to do is say “Hey Siri, open…” and then say whatever app I want open and it will open it for me. You can do the same by holding the home button down and then telling Siri what app to open. It, however, seems pointless to me as it no longer is a hands free option.
  • Siri can turn your volume up or down. While listening to music or watching something on your iPad, you can say “Hey Siri, turn the volume up/down.”

Other Things

  • Siri can turn your wifi off and on. Just say the magic words, “Hey Siri, turn my wifi off/on.
  • Siri can do math for you. Try “Hey Siri, what is the square root of 346.”
  • Siri can set an alarm, add a reminder, post to your calendar.
  • Siri can flip a coin, do a web search, change your settings, and be part of a snarky conversation. It is an interesting tool. Look at this article for more interesting things Siri can do.
  • By the way, Siri works amazingly well in a noisy environment. Have students face the wall to do there Siri work and you will have no problem with 20 to 30 students talking to Siri at the same time.

    The Big One

    Perhaps one of the more interesting features is Siri allows the ability to transcribe. In other words, you can speak and Siri will write for you. On your keyboard is an icon of a microphone. Tap it and talk. Simply say the punctuation when you want it placed in the text and Siri does it for you. Watch the video below to help generate some possible uses for this function.

Kaitlin’s Siri Story (1:40)

Teacher Thought Bubble

  • Siri can save you time by allowing you to open apps and adjust settings hands free.
  • Siri can be used in engaging ways with your students. Perhaps you can use it to see who is faster about knowing information on a specific topic; Siri or student—human vs machine.
  • The transcribe feature could be transformative for some students like it was for Kaitlin. Consider having students use it to brainstorm or do a prewriting activity.
  • Use the transcribe feature to make comments on students work. Speaking comments is faster than typing them.

If you have your own thoughts on this topic and these suggestions, feel free to send them to me.

Upcoming Topics

  • More Accessibility
  • All about the Keyboard, Keyboard, Keyboard
  • Helping Parents Parent with the iPad
  • Tools You Don’t Know You Have

Your Feedback

This newsletter is an experiment. It is also flexible to your needs. Please feel free to provide your feedback on the usefulness of the information I have been sending you by replying to any of the newsletter emails. Are there other topics you would like me to cover? Is something not clear and needs further explaining? I value your feedback and will use it to make this newsletter better for you. Thank you!





Author: Rob Kamrowski

My name is Rob Kamrowski and I have been a high school social study teacher of some years. Recently, I have accepted a position as an 8th grade American History teacher. I have taught a range of subjects from American History to Personal Finance to AP European History. I earned my Bachelor Degree in 2003, my Masters Degree in 2008, and strive to earn the respect of my students, colleagues and family every day of every year

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