Best Software Programs for Desktop Publishing

For a decade, when I thought of desktop publishing, I turned to Microsoft Publisher. I loved its flexibility, adaptability, and ease of use both for classroom projects and home. But then I moved on to other alternatives, like Lucid Press that were more flexible and affordable for educational purposes.

Really, I didn’t see a lot of other alternatives until Sara Stringer, from the Ask a Tech Teacher, came up with this great article about desktop publishing options. Some of these–like Word–have changed so much over the years that they are now a provide reasonable alternatives to laying out an attractive professional design in a program everyone is familiar with:

Technology advanced drastically in the past few years, allowing people to create different products with the aid of a computer. One of the most popular products that were drastically improved by the presence of technology is printed materials, which were commercially printed from a single file that was created using desktop publishing software. Printing digital files can be performed in a short period of time, with the finished product being bound with the help of a strong type of glue or screw posts, which securely holds the pages together.

With the prevalence of digital computers, tablets, and smartphones nowadays, people could easily create their own digital files with the help of software programs. Publishers would have total control of the things that they wanted to do, and their ideas could produce high-end digital published materials such as brochures, menus, books, and magazines, among others. It is important to find out the best software program that will be used by a desktop publisher. Because there are many available software programs in the market today, the preference among publishers varies. The following software programs are the most common desktop publishing tools used by amateurs and professionals:

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Top 10 Product Reviews of 2018

Throughout the year, I post websites and apps the Ask a Tech Teacher crew’s classes found useful, instructive, helpful in integrating technology into classroom lesson plans. Some, you agreed with us about; others not so much.

Here are the reviews you-all thought were the most helpful in efforts to weave tech into the classroom experience:

  1. How to Use Google Sheets in the K-12 Classroom
  2. Quick Review of 7 Popular Math Programs
  3. 9 Best-in-Class Digital Storytelling Tools
  4. What is Microsoft Sway?
  5. What is Kiddom? Why is it right for you? And free resources to inform your teaching
  6. What is Google Keep and Why Use it in Your Classroom?
  7. 3 Comic Creators That Will Wow Your Students
  8. Gamechanger: Type to Learn is Now in the Cloud!
  9. 14 Ways to use Scribble Maps
  10. How to Use Google Forms in the Classroom

Oh–I don’t get enough followers on Twitter! Would you mind adding me to your list? Here’s the link:

@AskaTechTeacher

Thanks! Have a wonderful 2019!

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Join me for a free Webinar on Building Digital Citizens

Please join me on Jan 23rd for a Free webinar on Building Digital Citizens:

Being a responsible digital citizen is critical to success in school and beyond, which is why integrating digital citizenship lessons across the curriculum at every grade level is so important. Join educator, coach and editor of the Ask a Tech Teacher blog, Jacqui Murray, for this free webinar to learn the essentials of digital citizenship and best practices for blending digital citizenship into lesson plans. Jacqui will share: – Your and your students responsibilities when using the Internet – The easiest way to teach Internet safety – Strategies to keep kids safe on social media – Fourteen proven strategies for dealing with cyberbullies – Which online images can safely be used — at school or home — and why

Click the image below to register:

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Free Lesson Plans from Study.com

Study.com is an online distance learning portal that provides over 70,000 lessons in fifteen subjects (including algebra, calculus, chemistry, macro- and microeconomics, and physics) aligned with many popular textbooks. Resources include not only videos but study tools, guides, quizzes, and more. You can read more detail on my Study.com review here.

What a lot of educators don’t know is that Study.com offers thousands of lesson plans for teachers — hundreds of them for free — to simplify lesson preparation and save time that is needed for student guidance. These lesson plans were created by teachers for all different grade levels and subject areas. They include:

  • learning objectives
  • materials
  • length of time
  • curriculum standards alignment
  • key vocabulary
  • instructions
  • extensions
  • related lessons

Once you select the lesson plan you’re interested in, you’ll see the credentials of the teacher who is providing the lesson as well as where it fits into a bigger course if that’s your interest (Though standalone, lessons often are aligned with a particular textbook). Many lesson plans include a video overview and a quiz to assess understanding of the material (though you can’t grade it without an account).

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2 Free Martin Luther King Day Lesson Plans

Subscriber Special

Until January 18th:

Free Martin Luther King Day Lesson Plans

Two lesson plans to prepare for Martin Luther King Day in January: 1) Students research events leading up to Dr. Martin Luther King’s impact on American history and share them with an Event Chain organized visually, including pictures and thought bubbles. 2) Students interpret the words of Dr. Martin Luther King in their own words in a visual organizer. Great project that gets students thinking about the impact of words on history.
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Designed for grades 4-7, it’s aligned with Common Core and ISTE Standards.
 MLK--His words cover
What’s included in each lesson plan:
  • brief summary of the project
  • Essential Question
  • Big Idea
  • Common Core and ISTE alignment
  • materials required
  • teacher prep required
  • step-by-step instructions
  • extensions to dig deeper into the subject
  • assessment strategies
  • sample grading rubric
  • sample project
  • resources

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What You Might Have Missed in December

Here are the most-read posts for the month of December:

  1. College Credit Classes onTechnology in Education
  2. End-of-year Maintenance: Image and Back-up Digital Devices
  3.  End of Year Maintenance: Update Your Online Presence
  4. End-of-Year Maintenance: 19 Steps To A Speedier Computer
  5. 3 Free SEL Activities from SafeSchools
  6. Why Should Students Learn Computer Science? A Teacher’s Perspective
  7. Root Robotics–Great Way to Extend Hour of Code
  8. Holiday Gifts for Teachers
  9. 13 Holiday Websites and 13 Projects

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2019, I Resolve…

NEW YEAR RESOLUTIONSNew Years–a time for rest, rejuvenation and repair. A time to assess life. Do we settle into our routine, enjoy where it’s headed, or is it time to grab our purse, iPhone, car keys, and get out of there?

As a teacher-author, New Year’s Resolutions are more of a To Do list. I break it down into Edtech Coaching/Mentoring, Blogging, and Fiction Writing (my novel writing):

Edtech Coaching/Mentoring

Focus on podcasts, webinars, online classes, and other web-based learning outlets for Ask a Tech Teacher. I have some great partners in this:

If you’re looking for this sort of extension in your platform, let me know.

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10 Hits and 10 Misses for 2018

Since we at Ask a Tech Teacher started this blog eight years ago, we’ve had over 5.3 million visitors to the 2,112 articles on integrating technology into the classroom. This includes tech tips, website/app reviews, tech-in-ed pedagogy, how-tos, videos, and more. We have regular features like:

If you’ve just arrived at Ask a Tech Teacher, start here.

It always surprises us what readers find to be the most and least provocative. The latter is as likely to be a post one of us on the crew put heart and soul into, sure we were sharing Very Important Information, as the former. Talk about humility.

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Best-in-Class Resources–You Decide

Every year, I review a large number of websites, apps, and resources that help educators blend technology into their classrooms. I get lots of feedback from readers sharing their experiences, asking questions, and clicking through to see if a particular tool will serve their needs.

But, I often don’t hear how the product worked in the fullness of time.

Starting last year, I sought out your opinions:

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Starting This Week: MTI 562

MTI 562: The Tech-infused Teacher

MTI 562 starts Monday, January 7, 2019! 

The 21st century lesson blends technology with teaching to build a collaborative, differentiated, and shared learning environment. In this course, you will use a suite of digital tools to make that possible while addressing overarching concepts like digital citizenship, internet search and research, authentic assessment, digital publishing, and immersive keyboarding. You will actively collaborate, share knowledge, provide constructive feedback to classmates, publish digitally, and differentiate for unique needs. Classmates will become the core of your ongoing Personal Learning Network.

Assessment is based on involvement, interaction with classmates, and completion of projects so be prepared to be fully-involved and an eager risk-taker. Price includes course registration, college credit, and all necessary materials. To enroll, click the link above and sign up. Email askatechteacher at gmail dot com with questions.

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