Luckily, my wife is fairly tech savvy so is hanging in there, but even just general things like how to have an effective virtual planning meeting is just not something she’s really ever had to do. So I’ve been trying to help her and her coworkers, like recording a half hour video where I just explained all the different capabilities of Zoom, and another where I explained Trello and Google slides.
Just sad how the school administration’s plan boiled down to burying their head in the sand and hoping it would all go away. Really bolsters the narrative that they just don’t care about the teachers.
I think you're underestimating the effect of poor direction from their districts, and in turn poor direction to the districts from the state and federal government on this.
Up until a month or so before the start of the school semester, we were still receiving communications about "if we start with in-classroom learning". These schools have set budgets, and large expenditures are planned and paid for over years, and to be faced with a hard fork in the road choice over a summer about whether to put all your eggs into distance learning (when many politicians were vowing students would be in classrooms) or to try for a hybrid approach, or to assume the politicians know what they're talking about and kids will all be in class come late August/early September, it's not hard to see how this situation could turn out as bad as it had.
Extreme circumstances require solid leadership. All it would have taken would have been the President (or even someone high in the Department of Education with the President's blessing, so it wasn't contradicted a day later) to say "we're hoping students will be able to return to class come the start of school, but we're allocating funds and directing districts to prepare for the eventuality that it may not happen, either overall or in their locality." and that clear signal that schools needed to prepare for this and would be supported in doing so would have made all the difference.
This whole year has been a comedy of errors. Like so many of those, what you're really seeing is just a tragedy.
I can heartily attest that even boards that were 100% planning on remote learning in April (I'm looking at you TDSB, YRDSB, TCSB in Toronto area) did literally none of this. How do I know - teachers all over the family, and my own efforts to literally help a private school board do this. I'd also note the private board spent zero dollars until the day before the first day of school.
It costs money to purchase things. It costs time to train people. But when you literally have the board "working" during the summer, and not on a curriculum, this is really just an indictment of an inability to organize.
That clearly hasn't happened either.
Surely you've been in a meeting room with more than about 5 people? All of those people have conflicting viewpoints, theories about the situation, risk analysis and so on.
Can you imagine being a board member who spent 30% of a school budget on remote learning only to have in-class instruction all year?
Hindsight is 20/20. School budgets are generally tight, their IT teams have less-than-desired-bandwidth, and they've already had to handle costs and challenges with the current situation such as getting mobile hotspots and video conferencing solutions up. Remember that not all kids have laptops or internet at home - and school IT gets to handle that situation too.
Especially when predicting failure was inevitable after somebody has clearly failed.
Citing a list of challenges (and renewable energy and imagination) is not a proof that failure couldn't have been avoided, it's a version of the "it's all so complicated, we can't say anything because we weren't there" trick. But the fact is that plenty of people understood the challenges, which were not at all new (what was new was the scale), and plenty of people were there (including the person you replied to) and are telling you about the failures that they saw.
Then they spent the last two weeks bulk flashing student laptops and ripping apart streaming servers to restore normal in-person learning because the governor put in a new order.
Anyone can predict that a failure will occur, predicting the specific mode of failure is almost impossible.
The problem is that a pandemic is an n-th order effect nightmare, with a distinctly low failure threshold based on covid's epidemiological parameters.
A country's commander in chief needs to listen to scientific expertise & provide clear public communication and apolitical leadership to avoid this kind of calamity, which just didn't happen.
The response has not been a resounding failure across the board in states that also didn't pretend like the federal government that the virus would just go away and wasn't a real problem. But if there had been a real federal response I'm sure more students would have laptops and internet, online classroom training would be better, and importantly cases would be down and we'd be safer.
The main benefit of school at that age is learning to interact appropriately with your peers and teachers. Hopefully the younger kids are more resilient and adaptive than I'm giving them credit for, because I can't imagine it being anything less than frustrating and depressing for them.
Very good chance of getting contradicted even with the president's blessing, most likely by the president himself.
I imagine almost all the people planning this had very little practical experience with remote learning before this, and so had to learn about what it could and could not do well and implement a program to get all these resources to children.
That's something that many people here might be comfortable with, so I can understand why they may think this is the easy part, but let's flip this on it's head. How many people here, if instead of working out a digital solution and delivering to people were asked to work out a solution to have hundreds to thousands of children come in to a physical location, group into assigned categories for teaching, go to their individual rooms in these groups, and receive instruction for hours at a time with periods of play and lunch interspersed?
All the problems you might encounter in that scenario has equivalents for someone migrating from managing a fully in-person based teaching system to a fully, or even partially digital one. Whereas I might have problems knowing how to direct people as they arrive to the correct location effectively and efficiently, in a digital system they need to know how to find the students that are completely list in connecting to the classroom and never show up. Where I might struggle in making sure I had the appropriate staff at the correct locations to teach, they might struggle with the fact that not all students have digital accounts set up needed to connect (and not all parents are responsive to any contact during the summer).
Managing adults where you have a clear channel of communication to them that they are expected to pay attention to because it's their job is hard. I can only imagine what it's like to add a bunch of children in the mix (because you really are dealing with kids AND their parents) and have a sizable portion of the adults likely think "it will work out because it's their job, I'll just pay attention a couple days before school starts and do what they say, it's always worked out before".
I know I didn't want to read all the school emails coming to me over the summer (which reading between the lines mostly seemed to amount to "we're totally screwed but trying our best and we really hope school will be open because we have no idea how to do anything that we might need to".
Meanwhile, other universities like KCL and LSE were still playing "wait and see" until even a few weeks ago.
Even if Cambridge were wrong, and everything is all well and good and we'll be home by Christmas it'll be easier and cheaper to revert back to normal than the clusterfuck that will be going on in places stuck in limbo/denial.
As anyone with some experience knows - trying to plan during instability or planning for two eventualities is basically impossible and a whole bunch of institutions AND countries have pissed away the past 6 months.
Kudos to Cambridge for showing some strong leadership.
In April parents were already talking about "pods" as an alternative to remote learning in K-12 schools.
If the average K-12 school wasn't promising what parents wanted - in person education - the parents would get it somewhere else, pulling their student and the ~10k funding that comes with the student right from the school.
This was the ONLY factor at play and is highly predictive of the preparedness of remote learning at various institutions.
The bigger takeaway is that parents, not students or teachers, are almost always the antagonists.
We've had 6 months to prepare and instead we spent the summer arguing about masks. Incredible to look back on the lack of leadership and planning at all levels.
Never in my life have I been so disappointed with the people around me.
Too bad our DoE is completely dysfunctional, led by a person who likely prefers it not to exist, a pattern for this administration.
The current budget is 81 billion dollars. We have spent more than a trillion on that department since its founding only to see little to no improvements.
If you want to see where most local school systems get in trouble simply look at the lavishness expended on new schools appearances instead of focusing on the needs of students. Where the teacher to non teacher ratio can be upside down yet all funded under the education banner.
The DOE isn't the problem you think it is, it is however nearly entirely useless and like other recently created "Departments" are a means to expand the power of one branch of government at the expense of others.
max class size
max admin to teacher ratio
standardized pay rate for teachers in each state
paid school lunches
standardized mandatory "recess"
standard list of "extras", let clubs handle the non-standard extras
no school sponsored sports, let them be PTO affiliated and funded
mandatory list of supplies for students and teachers.
I have to say our school district has been great. They've picked standard central platform (https://www.schoology.com/) that provides all the links the kids need, been training the teachers on them and got them support. Under that portal they've got just a few specific websites that serve a central purpose. Teachers are allocating work under one portal, though it might mean they need to go use a special interactive maths website or something on another site, but they have SSO working so it's smooth and effortless. It did take a long time for the state to make decisions and make proper resources available, which severely tied the school district's hands, but they did their best to assume the most pessimistic situation they could and worked towards that while waiting for the funds to be released for more.
Apart from the screw ups around initial passwords on email accounts it has been an incredibly smooth process. My 3rd grade kid hasn't had to seek help from us for the technical side at all after initial logging in.
I find it interesting how different pre-school is in different countries.
In the US, kindergarten is the first year of compulsory education - traditionally children would go for half a day, but I think more and schools offer it as a full day now to take into account having both parents in the workplace.
It's generally the first year of free, available education which most people take advantage of because it's free.
First grade is usually the first year of compulsory education (e.g., in California a student must be admitted to kindergarten at parent request if they turn 5 before September 1 of the school year and to transitional kindergarten if they turn 5 between September 2 and December 2, but compulsory education starts at age 6.)
There is indeed a curriculum here. It's obviously pretty lightweight and not very strict, but kids are expected to know things like animal names/sounds, the ABC, have some musical/coordination skills...
It is perfectly acceptable in educated circles in the U.S. to state that kids from "disadvantaged families", should be taken out of their families' homes from 7 AM to 7 PM to get "additional enrichment opportunities", in other words, raised by the state.
It may well be that you could increase grades and test scores this way, but I have some serious issues with the degree to which we're comfortable separating children from their families, because we've decided that we know what's best for everyone.
Reminds me of how the American government made a big push in the second half of the 19th century to remove Native American children from their homes and send them to boarding schools to "civilize" them.
One great resource to get your toes wet on this topic is to read the "Neither Dog nor Wolf" series by Kent Nerburn .
I was going to link to the Goodreads for the books, but when I went there just now it had full page ads that completely changed the styling of the page. So f that.
If we're going to have the state effectively raise the children of certain social classes in the name of academic and economic achievement, we need to be clear as day and openly state exactly what we are doing, and why we think it's the right thing to do.
My guess is that we haven't had this conversation thus far because to do so would reveal the arrogance of the educated classes in the U.S. and show folks just how little the elites think of them and their families.
When you say "the only way", you are ignoring other solutions
> When one parent is in prison and the other is working nonstop
Should we be putting that parent in prison? Should we be forcing the other parent to work nonstop to provide for their family?
The other less cynical factor of course is kids' education, but at the same time, ours was homeschooled for a while during the pandemic before the summer vacation and he's learned a lot more and more broad things than he did in his own school (history through youtube, music / singing er... also through youtube, maths, etc)
It is also parents who have to redirect kid back as the kid looses attention and wanders away (completely normal at kindergarten age).
I think you mean, they don’t care about students? Because that’s truly who is hurt here.
> I think you mean, they don’t care about students? Because that’s truly who is hurt here.
It is true in some transitive sense that the people making these decisions don't care about students, but insisting on that phrasing seems either hostile to, or at least minimising of the importance of and impact on, teachers.
The school or district administration's role is to care for the students, yes, but (at least in the classroom) they do that indirectly, by choosing, training, and equipping skilled and qualified teachers.
An administration who is showing contempt for its teachers is thus, indirectly, showing contempt for its students; but it's directly showing contempt for its teachers, and cutting them out of the story says that the harm they experience is not important. Teachers already are, like so many essential workers, expected to do their job endlessly without any commensurate reward; what is the point of denying the harm (for example, by saying or implying that they aren't truly hurt) that is done to them when they are not given even the basic tools to translate their passion for teaching and care for their students into commensurate results?
(I would also be opposed to someone responding to claims of harm to the students by saying "why not focus on the teachers?—they're the ones who are truly hurt." There's no monopoly on suffering; we can acknowledge one group's suffering without pretending that they're the only ones.)
If we’re hair picking students vs. teachers then it is likely political distinction.
My daughter has been doing online school for two years now with a school system that has been online only for about 10 years.
Their hack was to give the kids one assignment per day. A missed assignment = 1 absence. An assignment turned in a day late = 1 tardy. The teachers post the weeks assignments on weekend (before Monday morning) and it's up to the kids to determine when/how they will get them done (which is why she attends this school, as it gives her a lot of flexibility to do the other things she is interested in).
Holy crap this is an incredibly stupid thing to be forced to do.
Comparatively, the kids aren't dying, they don't have bills to pay, they don't work overtime. Their parents may even be able to pull them from school, or homeschool. Worst case they might be held back a year.
The students will survive this, but the teachers literally might not.
Will not protecting teachers from covid somehow keep them from getting in traffic accidents? I suspect the opposite is true.
Those who can't, teach. And those who can't teach, apparently become director of education.
In the end we made a high value and bang-for-your-buck setup by purchasing great but older and used components such as a 1920x1200 IPS U2412m monitor off ebay for $99. A ring light with camera mount, Apple Pencil, AirServer for showing the iPad on screen and being able to cast. Amongst other components I wasn't using and let them borrow like a Apple Trackpad and wireless keyboard.
The thing that saddened me was teachers who only found out weeks before the start of school were having to figure out their setups and were unaware of how technology could be integrated for a benefit and didn't know what they didn't know. Stuff like using an iPad with an Apple Pencil and AirServer on a mac to cast a lesson drawn onto the desktop and then share that with a zoom meeting.
In Germany we have the same problem. A side effect of our politicians not wanting to modernize anything fundamental in the education system for years.
Hell, Bavaria still bans cellphones in schools.
Of course, administration could and should have helped. And maybe I am not seeing a lot of things going on, but I did not notice teachers organising themselves, sharing materials or video lectures, or curating literature for their students.
The frustrating aspect of remote schooling is that there are thousands of underemployed teachers, there is a network that allows every one of them to reach out to millions of students. And yet all I ever heard was about single teachers being stressed to prepare and correct exercises for the maybe 100 students the would have met in-person otherwise.
Regardless, I do think teachers are putting up with a lot and likely stressed more than usual while their leaders fail miserably.
Is it? I have two kids in grade school and it was eminently obvious. My partner thought they'd get their shit together and was shocked when they didn't; school year delayed, laptops not ready (we live in a lower income area, not all families have means to afford devices), and the teachers completely unprepared to adapt to online learning.
I told my partner we should move the kids into private schooling that was prepared for it or just home school for a year while keeping them enrolled in the district to keep tax money local. They said to give the school a chance.
Government-run services are incredibly awful at adapting to anything in a "short" period of time, time and time again. Try getting permits for a house or business. Anyone who runs a small business inherently understands how generally useless government agencies are.
It also looks like there are $6 clip-on mirrors (2) that would also do an admirable job, perhaps with more stability and control than the pencil-balancing trick.
(1) Osmo - Base for iPad https://smile.amazon.com/dp/B07JNZ4J67/
(2) Flexible 4" Clip On Mirror for Computer Monitor - Convex Desk Mirror to See People Behind You - Perfect in Any Office Cubicle Environment https://smile.amazon.com/dp/B078NB3JV2/
True, but this cost the teacher zip (assuming supplies on hand) instead of $38US.
Teaching is already a rough gig, and being forced to improvise with limited to no support from communities, schools, or governments.
I have nothing but a giant respect for teachers that are usually underpaid for the giant importance that they carry on their shoulders, a good teacher can help completely change the life of their students.
Cheap sports shoes so the poor kid isn't left out after he lost his shoes but can't afford new ones, pens etc for children who lose them and don't have friends who will lend them one, tampons or sanitary towels for girls whose parents refuse to accept she's growing up.
Example article on this: https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/nearly-1-in-10-school...
Anyway as others have pointed out, if the schools won't fund that, should the teachers be shelling out for supplies like that themselves? Where's the excessively rich tech companies now? They could do some dank virtue signaling and give free hardware to teachers for example. They've earned tens of billions in the past month anyway, if the government isn't doing anything for society, it's down to the companies.
... And you don't even know if this is a problem you need to solve. Did you do an analysis to see if a) this is a wide-scale problem and b) that an expensive hardware solution is the actual answer versus, say, shipping an extra webcam that teachers can position in any way they want, or shipping a cheap plastic clip with a mirror that replicates what this teacher did.
I don't think taping a CD to a laptop is perfect, but you can imagine all the technical difficulties that come from using something like a Wacom tablet like home, right?
Drivers/software/OS support for the tablet? What program do they use to write in? How do they share that with attendees? How reliable is all this?
There's a simplicity to keeping it completely analogue which has much less failure scenarios. I don't have a link, but a saw a tweet where a teacher (?) had 3D printed a mount for a mirror to put on the laptop lid, a more polished version of this same thing, basically an overhead projector for a webcam.
So no, Wacom tablets are not a magic time-saver that protects teachers time. In fact, it may the case you shipped Wacom tablets and this teacher STILL chooses to use this low-tech approach. Why? Because you didn't do your due diligence and just assumed Wacom tablets will solve this problem and you have ZERO evidence for that.
Right now, we're in just scrambling to get the basics sorted out. I think you do want to give teachers some flexibility in figuring out the last mile of this process and potentially roll out things that work, into general policies later ... because there is no way a school board can think through all the challenges.
I had teachers who I know for a fact had wacom tablets available, as they taught the photography/graphics course, who still chose to use pencil and paper. I have to assume therefore that there is some benefit to using pencil and paper over a wacom.
With this ingenious level of analysis we'd still be banging rocks together to make fire.
Aside from ethics, a class of kids represents millions of future earnings and GDP, this warrants serious approach and best tools money can buy.
Instead education is still stuck in 18th century and we have to put up with ridiculius aruments about petty expences.
Indeed it does. Let's start with paying the teachers more instead of assuming they should pay out of pocket, then, we can have districts pay for the teaching supplies... Oh wait, that all costs tax dollars? Never mind, carry on.
Edit: Also, I had teachers who I know for a fact had wacom tablets available, as they taught the photography/graphics course, who still chose to use pencil and paper. I have to assume therefore that there is some benefit to using pencil and paper over a wacom. This being the case, why on earth would they spend more money?
Either way, it's important to teach children to use technology so they aren't lost when entering higher education or career environments that will use said technology.
I completely agree, but for the purposes of a teacher using a tool to display something to the class, if paper works better, paper works better.
>Instead education is still stuck in 18th century
Nitpick. Education is not stuck in the 18th century.
If they carefull trialed it and got scientific data as to PDA's effectiveness, then you have no right to declare 'obvious stupidity' of any sort, no matter what the results were.
The sensible path of course would be for the school (district) to provide its teachers for job related expenses. A home office budget should be part of that, especially these days.
Needs additional software and mental overhead to get the sketches on screen.
That's half a day's pay for a newly qualified teacher in the US.
Everyone is trying to figure out how to continue life during this pandemic. Why would you expect all levels to have this figured out?
> Everyone is trying to figure out how to continue life during this pandemic. Why would you expect all levels to have this figured out?
There's a big difference between, on one hand, complaining "why haven't communities, schools, and governments figured this all out?", which would be a ridiculous complaint and which no-one is making; and, on the other hand, observing that communities, schools, and governments have collectively thrown up their hands and declared that it's all the teacher's responsibility, which is a real and justified complaint.
Is it a real complaint? I don't see anybody claiming it's all the teacher's responsibility. I don't see that from the parents, or school board, or any government of any level.
> Is it a real complaint? I don't see anybody claiming it's all the teacher's responsibility. I don't see that from the parents, or school board, or any government of any level.
No indeed, it is usually not stated explicitly, just as racism and sexism often are not. But few to no resources are given to teachers, and the first port of call for governmeents, school administrators, and parents looking to apportion blame is teachers, so the effect is the same, even if no one explicitly acknowledges it.
I think a little credit and understanding is due to all the people working at all levels of government, including teachers and school boards, for trying to do their best in an unprecedented, unplanned situation. Having said that, I'm sure there are parents that complain about this, that or another thing, but those parents will always complain about everything.
>and the first port of call for governmeents, school administrators, and parents looking to apportion blame is teachers
I don't see that happening with respect to the pandemic response at all.
I agree this happens with education standards in general and it is a pet-peeve of mine when it does happen. The reality is that if students fail, it's never the teacher, and in fact, it isn't even the school. It's always the parents. Always. If the parents don't enforce education standards and make sure their children don't fail, then there is very little that schools and teachers can do.
The only downside appears to be that you have to angle the CD, in order to reflect the keyboard plane into the webcam, which means the captured image can only be viewed at an angle.
It'd be nice to have some live, post-processing to fix some issues like this. You could apply a perspective transformation to rotate the image to a head-on view, and maybe increase the contrast between black and white.
The angle doesn't look like it is farther away from head-on than you would get when looking at a piece of paper sitting on your desk, which is a pretty common thing to do. I think most people are so used to reading paper at that angle that they wouldn't even notice that it isn't head-on.
I just tried it with a bit of regular mirror (second surface) taped to bits of an old lamp. It does not work well, as there are internal reflections and glare from the glass fronting. You get slight double images too.
First surface mirrors can be made by taking apart kaleidoscopes and using the mirrors in them. That or dissolving the protective backing to regular mirrors with acetone. You can buy them outright as well, but they tend to be more expensive (~$20 each).
A CD/DVD is much easier than the other options and I'd say that the hack is even easier than a regular mirror.
I'm really struggling to see how the pencil/CD/coin solution is better. I wouldn't be surprised if more teachers have compacts readily available than CDs. I think the whole CD thing is going viral because it falls into the "clever lifehack" bucket, i.e. it is optimized for hackiness virality while not actually being the best/simplest solution to the problem. But a simple compact taped to a laptop screen isn't as interesting of a "hack", and thus doesn't go viral.
(Also -- conveniently -- the layer of glass/plastic on compacts is super thin, basically just barely enough to prevent the aluminum or whatever from oxidizing and from you getting the mirrored surface all fingerprinty, so it doesn't seem to cause noticeable internal reflection problems. And it's thinner than the layer of plastic on CDs, which are NOT first surface mirrors, which is easily provable by scratching the bottom of the CD and noting that you're scratching the plastic and not the reflective material directly.)
AFAIK The reflective layer is on the top of the disc - where logos and graphics are. From the clean side you are looking at this metallic layer through the plastic.
I don't know where you got this idea from that CDs/DVDs can be first surface mirrors; they aren't. If they were they'd be really bad at their job, because one of the hallmarks of first surface mirrors is that they're incredibly fragile and do not stand up to any kind of handling whatsoever. That would not work for CDs/DVDs for obvious reasons. More info and diagrams here: https://www.clir.org/pubs/reports/pub121/sec3/
Making a mirror would be a far more involved process.
But assuming it's partially the webcam/video software that's correcting the exposure/contrast to eke out a decent image, other common household items could be used in it's place i.e silverware, annealed glass etc.
And you're overstating how much harder it would be to prop up a tiny cheap mirror. I bet you could do it with two pencils taped together at an angle, with one taped to the back of the laptop and the other taped to the back of the mirror.
> potentially more available since lots of young teachers legitimately may not have any CDs
I'm sure you'll pass a Walgreen's on the way to the tiny cheap mirror shop.
This is one example that may well work as-is, no pencil or tape necessary. And that $5 is the inflated "shipping is factored in" Amazon price; they're cheaper in dollar stores and similar.
The craft store should have unmounted mirrors, which might be easier to deal with.
FWIW, many CDs are also very good mirrors. I've also used commercial pressings without extensive paint to look at eclipses.
One improvement I can see - maybe better to tape the pencil with the eraser point up, so you're less likely to accidentally stab yourself with the pencil if moving the laptop or CD?
Probably try to lower it down enough to fit one CD.
Then I realised a mirror composes two images really well :)
Later I used transparent perspex with lighting (peppers ghost) as the mirror so the laptop screen on the piano is visible.
It is described here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c4Qp8iHre9o&t=1s
I expect her university will end up going fully remote again next semester, so we will no doubt be putting this to use.
There are apps that will stream the image from the phone to the computer, and in Zoom it can be added as a second video feed. That means the class can see the teacher's face as well as the paper.
I tried a few apps, but I don't remember which worked, or their names, except for https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.dev47apps....
For reference, I helped set up my high school with a <insert-suite-for-education> for free and they were very happy as there were folks charging them to get it set up.
But next biggest problem I saw was - teachers who have been using a blackboard all their life trying to do their best to teach with a powerpoint presentation.
Problem is exacerbated when you throw in more variables like - flaky internet connection, inconsistencies in UI all across, hardware failures, zoombombing and a certain lack of features.
Now do this in India - where the student:teacher ratio is absolutely crazy.
Really goes to show how we should get the fundamentals right.
We did for a long time then everyone said that computers had to be used.
Here's a quick proof of concept using a random CD and my phone's camera: https://svkt.org/~simias/up/20200914-000627_psx-cd-reflectio...
Note that the color of the reflection is not much different from a normal picture (visible at the bottom). For added difficulty I used an original PlayStation disc, that's dyed black: https://svkt.org/~simias/up/20200914-000836_psx-cd.jpeg
Now it needs to go viral for all the other teachers. Maybe a site will emerge from this where teachers can share best practices, and everyone can benefit from some of the creations.
Reminds me of the “space pen” urban myth.
The mirror system isn't quite as macgyvered though :)
My teacher friend recommended DroidCamX (paid) but the drivers are windows only so I wasn't able to use that.
I instead tested with Iriun https://iriun.com/ and it worked OK with my newer phone (the older phone I wanted to use had trouble with autofocus... though maybe that's because of the way I have it suspended from a desk lamp).
It lags a little, but overall usable.
The USB camera use case is to send "table top" video input into OBS, mix with other sources, and record the lesson for offline async viewing (flipped classroom).
My teachers all have laptops with cameras that don't reach even half of that kind of crispness of image sadly.
He puts the device on a shelf with the camera facing down.
Disclaimer: I'm an American and while i'm often proud of my country, i acknowledge how awful our collective priorities have become with education in general suffering from it...and at the risk of sounding political (apologies)...Neither of the 2 major political parties seems to have the answer. <sigh>
The idea that the Moderate is the new third party is novel though. But it's too early to tell if that's true, since Democrats are mostly still moderate and if the Trump Republican party collapses, the moderate wing of the Republican party might resurge.
There is a built-in feature in Teams which allows me to launch quick improvised quizzes in the chat which I find nice. I'm also able to collect assignments via Teams and check/mark them in Word using Apple Pencil. The students take a picture using their own phone camera and add it to a docx-file which is then turned in using Teams.
Apple hardware is no longer expensive these days — I mean, they will let you spend as much as you want and take your money, but their lineup starts quite low and provides excellent value for the money.
first couple of hits for me when googling "convert old olverhead projector"
So market wise maybe there is a hacky way that allows you to get a cheap reasonably efficient projector thaat would make these hacks irrelevant, without naturally pushing to solve the problems of the projector market and thus pushing the product to have a projector type price. I certainly wish I could think up something that fell in that niche.
I don’t understand why Apple keeps holding back the Mac platform, but I finally had to give up. I love my iPad for what it is great at, but gave up on Mac eight years ago. This reminds me of the black and white Mac Classics with tiny screens in school, when everyone had colour PCs that cost less.
Some have a little magnet so it can be detached and re-attached quickly.
We use it to make a phone-based people counter. Recently found out that in China they're marketed as phone attachments to take pervy, upskirt photos of girls without getting caught.
This maybe something that local hacker spaces could pump out:
I rigged up a stand so she can slide papers in and out.
As long as you don't have a chat window focused and accidentally press the enter key, you can just backspace out any accidental keypress that might happen.
Software solution: Keyboard Cleaner http://jan.prima.de/~jan/plok/archives/48-Keyboard-Cleaner.h...