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Friday, March 27, 2015

Introduction to Portrait Illustrator Maker, a web tool that makes computer avatars

When mentoring our pre-service and in-service teachers we need to describe and model both research-based and clinically tested best practices, and demonstrate how these best practices can be applied in the real (i.e. physical) and virtual (i.e. online) classroom for both teaching and teacher training. The combination of face to face instruction in a physical setting and online learning is called blended learning. In this section of the blog we will describe how the internet can serve as a supplemental resource for instruction and the mentoring of pre-service and in-service Jewish educators. In this post we will begin our discussion of  how Portrait IllustratorMaker, a web tool that enables its users to create computer avatars (see the definition in the next paragraph), can be used to promote  Judaic instruction and to mentor/train Jewish educators.

What is a computer avatar?

A computer avatar is a graphic image or file that represents the person using the computer. Click here to connect to a blogpost that elaborates on the definition of a computer avatar. Click here for a discussion on how computer avatars can be used to enhance instruction.

Assumption: The teacher or mentor teacher has an interactive white board (i.e. SMART Board, Promethean, etc.), a Tablet PC (also called a Slate or Blade), a computer presenter or computer with internet access attached to an LCD projector in the classroom. It would be ideal if students or mentees had access to their own laptop computers or iPads. Given parental and school approval, and the development of specific guidelines, smartphones can be used to enhance instruction as well.

Note: Although Portrait Illustrator Maker can be applied in the Judaic Studies blended learning classroom, it can be also be used for training pre-service and in-service Jewish educators for professional or staff development. It is our hope that Jewish educators around the globe will form an online community of practice, a CoP, a group of people who share an interest, a craft, and/or a profession, to enhance the delivery of instruction and training of Jewish educators. For example, here is a CoP you might want to join. 

Note:  can be used in a face to face and virtual classroom.

What is Portrait Illustrator Maker ?

Portrait Illustrator Maker is a web tool that enables the use to create computer avatar. See the definition and explanation of a computer avatar above.

Where is Portrait Illustrator Maker  located on the web?

Where can you find helpful tutorials on how to use Portrait Illustrator Maker?

Click on the links below for tutorials on Portrait Illustrator Maker :

On the next blogpost we will discuss how Portrait Illustrator Maker, a web tool that enables the user to make computer avatars, can be utilized to promote instruction in the blended learning classroom.

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