Friday, August 30, 2013

"Tired" or "Inspired"

  "Tired" or "Inspired"

by Brad Waid 

Today, we find ourselves in a tough position.  We are constantly bombarded with both internal and external pressures that demand our time and make it difficult to stay inspired.  Whether you are new to your position or have paid your dues and have some grey hair to prove it, you can always make the decision to get inspired and do the right thing for kids.  

When you are feeling overwhelmed and tired, reach out and find the people who inspire you.  There are amazing educators all over the world and right next door! 

Through my travels and the world of twitter I have run into some amazing people and they are doing incredible things!  

Here are some of the amazing educators that continue to inspire me because of the work they do for kids. 

I am inspired by;

Todd Nesloney,  aka @techninjatodd who is doing amazing things with kids in Texas.  He's flipped his classroom, gives kids a voice and he is doing amazing things with Angela Maiers aka @AngelaMaiers and the "You Matter" campaign.  

Erin Klein aka @KleinErin - who uses Digital Work stations to teach kids how to manage the world around them, embrace technology and become independent global citizens, who learn how to collaborate to solve problems. 

Jessica Allen aka @jessievaz12 - leading a revolution in Chile with students  by reaching out to her International PLN so her kids can get exposure to the world and learn from amazing teachers no matter where they are.  She's doing it because she made the decision to take reach and do the right thing for her kids. 

Arin Kress aka @KressClass - Using the power of augmented reality to welcome  students and parents into a new building and making them feel at home and a part of a just one night. 

Patrick O Shea aka @PatrickOSheaphd - an awesome professor in North Carolina who works on getting teachers inspired and trained on cutting edge technology (Augmented Reality included).  In addition, he encourages new teachers to "stay the course" because the reward of changing a kids life....stays with you forever. 

Kevin Honeycutt aka @kevinhoneycutt - who goes around the world inspiring educators, (myself included) that they can be amazing.....just by telling stories.  Story telling is our oldest form of teaching and Kevin is one of the best. 

Ingvi Hrannar aka @IngviHrannar - an Icelandic educator who works in a 1-1 classroom and proves that no matter how far away you and your students are, you can use the power of technology to get connected around the world.  

Matt Gomez aka @MattBgomez - who works with 5 and 6 years olds.  Showing them that they are never to young to learn how to thrive with technology and can become masters of their own learning. 

Andrew Vanden Heuvel aka @avheuv- using his Google glass to create STEM bite videos, where he makes you feel like it's just you and him having a great conversation over coffee.   After a couple minutes, you have just become an expert on "mixtures and solutions"! 

Rob Glass aka @glasr333 - taking a district from a crisis, to a change in culture and thinking! Inspiring teachers to embrace change and technology but stay grounded in teaching kids to become lifelong learners and leaders. 

Last but not least is the other half of the "Two Guys".  Drew opened my eyes to twitter and he inspires me on a daily basis.  Thanks Drew

Drew Minock aka @TechMinock - using the power of Augmented Reality and technology to send himself home with his kids....each they never have to learn alone!  

So again, the Question is......."Tired" or "Inspired" ?

....which one are you?

I know what you can be.  You can be amazing! Get inspired today.....and inspire others!  Be amazing!  The ripple effect starts with you!

"Stay Connected"  

Brad Waid 

aka @techbradwaid on Twitter 
two_guys_and_some_ipads on Instagram

Saturday, August 17, 2013

The Two Guys Show: TONIGHT AT 9PM EST!!

We are excited to announce we will be joining the EdReach Network with the creation of The Two Guys Show! Our show will be live on Tuesday night at 9:00pm EST. It will be available to download and subscribe in iTunes and using the Stitcher app.
Our show will feature:
  • Latest in educational technology
  • Augmented reality in education
  • Interviews with Game Changing Educators
  • Shout outs to exciting ideas from Twitter and blogs
  • Upcoming EdTech conferences, and deadlines
Our show will be full of energy and passion for sharing ideas, stories, and educators who are making a difference in the lives of students. We will announce our the date and time of our show very soon so stay tuned! We will also be using the #TwoGuysShow for comments throughout the show, as well as questions us or guest. Make sure to check out the promo video for The Two Guys Show!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Edu All-Stars Podcast: Two Guys

Brad and I were extremely excited when our great friend Todd Nesloney approached us to be guest on the Edu All-Stars Podcast. The Edu All-Stars Podcast is a new educational podcast started by Todd, Stacey Huffine, and Chris Kesler. Their show is dedicated to sharing the stories and passions of educators making a difference in education around the country. It has skyrocketed up the iTunes charts with a 5 star rating, and continues to explode with popularity. We are honored to be part of such an influential line up of educators who have join the Edu All-Stars Podcast in past episodes like:

This opportunity gave us a chance to speak about our journey, mentors, philosophy, and passions. Brad and I were also excited to announce we will be joining the EdReach Network with the creation of the Two Guys Show. Look for more information about The Two Guys Show coming very soon! 

The Educational Media Network EdReach
You can check out the Edu All-Stars broadcast summary on their website at and make sure to click the link below to subscribe to their podcast in iTunes!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Discussing an Augmented Reality World! - AR Detroit

On Monday, July 29th our baby took it's first step!  That evening, a group of metro Detroit Augmented Reality enthusiast got together at Honnigman Law office to discuss all thing AR! It was a great success as we had 15 amazing people there to discuss how they use Augmented Reality in their field.  An Attorney, Law Students, An Executive Producer, The Co-Founder of Red Piston, Educators, A Business Development Manager, A Business Development Director, An Instructional Designer & Technical Writer, Some Data Scientist, Some Engineers & Programmers and more.

Erin Klein giving Leap Motion a try at the AR Detroit Meet up.
It started when I picked up my good friend Erin Klein @KleinErin for the meeting.  I wanted to get there early so Brian and I could make sure everything was working and ready for the meeting (we were already down a man because Drew @techminock was doing a RockStar tour of San Francisco). When Erin and I arrived, we found Brian in the conference room playing with his new toy..."Leap Motion".  Anyone who got there early got a chance to try it out! (see videos on our Instagram).
Brian and I getting the event started.

The meeting started with Brian and I welcoming everyone to the meeting and going over what AR Detroit was and what we wanted it to be (A place where people could come and see the latest technology in AR and have amazing discussions about the application and the implementations of the technology in the AR World).  Next, were quick introductions of the members who were present and how they view or use Augmented Reality in their field.

Steve showing the amazing things DAQRI is working on! 

On to the demos! This was an exciting part of the meeting.  It was time to see and hear about the latest and greatest in Augmented Reality!  To start things, Brian spoke about Augmented Reality and the Legal impacts of using the technology.  Brian is Partner and Chair of the Social, Mobile and Emerging Media Practice Group at Honigman Miller Schwartz and Cohn LLP and an expert in the field.  Brian did an amazing job explaining the legal side of it and leaving everyone with an altered mindset and great questions.  After Brian finished, it was time for Steve Petersen to share some of the amazing things DAQRI is doing in the world of AR.  Steve is the Detroit contact for all things DAQRI in the Detroit & Michigan area.  He demoed everything from the human heart to making blue prints "Pop-up" and come to life.  He rocked it.  Next was, Jakub Koter the co-founder of Red Piston which specializes in building innovative Mobile Apps for iPhone, iPad, Android and Blackberry Playbook.  He showed some cool projects they had worked on for both Lowe's and Mercedez-Benz.  He was then able to give us a sneek peak at a project they were working on for a national client.  After Jakub finished, it was time for Jim O'Donnell to show the amazing AR stuff he created!  Jim works has his own company called NonLinear Creative and he aslo does contract work for Jackson-Dawson.  Jim showed some awesome projects he created for Ford and other car companies.  After that, Jim and I demoed our "Planets" app that we are working on togehter.  Jim has done an amazing job with the app.  When you open the app, you are able to put the entire solar system on the table, there for you to interact with and explore!  After the demos, we jumped right into a round-table discussion about using AR in the World!  After about an hour of amazing discussion, it was time to call the meeting to a close.  After a couple hours, the inaugural meeting for AR Detroit was over.  It was an amazing night of Augmented Reality Demos and fascinating discussions! 

Jim showing a new update to Planets!

   Thank you to everyone for all your support and thanks to these companies for giving us material to talk about and inspiration; DAQRI, Aurasma, Mitchlehan Media, Red Piston, Apparmo and others.  

If you are interested in joining the group, please go to  If you are not in the area, please chat with us through (AR Detroit) or tweet at us using our twitter handles

Brad Waid - @techbradwaid
Brian Wassom - @bdwassom
Drew Minock - @techminock
AR Detroit - @ARDetroit

Thursday, August 8, 2013

5 FREE Tech Tools For This School Year

Our philosophy is to talk about apps and tools that change the game for us as educators, and our students. We do not agree with the "100 great apps" approach because you will never make it to #17 let alone #100. Here are a list of 5 FREE tools we recommend to use this upcoming school year to increase student engagement, deeper level thinking, teacher productivity, and make parent communication flawless! 

Three Ring
Three Ring is an app that completely changed the way I create student portfolios and communicate with parents. Three Ring allows you to capture and share each learning moment in a photo, video, audio recording, or written note in a secure fashion. Each parent can only view the material of their child in the blog style format. It gives the parents a feeling of being in the classroom without actually being there or "feel like a fly on the wall in my child's classroom."   

Check out our review on Teachers with Apps here and blog post.
Download Three Ring
Set up an account on their site here

Remind is an tool that allows you to text your students or stay in touch with parents in a secure and safe way. Teachers never see student or parent phone numbers, and they will never see the teacher's phone number. Educators can send messages using the mobile app on Android and iOS devices, as well as This tool is great for friendly reminders about field trips, homework, plays, events, or a kind motivational message. Remind continues to add new features to their mobile app  and have a teacher resource page to help with any questions. 


Download Remind

Augmented Reality
Augmented reality was a game changing tool we implemented in the second half of last year but will be taking it to another level this school year. Many amazing educators have contributed our Meaningful Integration of AR page and Augmented Reality Pinterest page. These pages are filled with great ideas for using augmented reality in your classroom, school, district, and community. Augmented reality is gaining popularity in the educational setting and more apps are being created because of it. We believe augmented reality in the future of edtech because we have seen how powerful it can be in the classroom. Some of the apps we recommend are (click the name to download or visit site):


Anatomy 4D 

KidBlog is a wonderful tool for students to create and write their own personal blog in a safe and simple way. You will no longer have to worry about notebooks getting lost as Kidblog allows students to write from anywhere. They can write from home, on an iPad, smartphone, or the computer lab. It allows students to create their own positive digital footprint. Kidblog allows students to embed video, slideshows, artwork, etc. As the teacher, you have control of all the privacy settings for your class. It also creates an excellent digital portfolio of of each students writing. Kidblog is a power tech tool I am very excited to use this year with my students! 

Download Kidblog

Cargo-bot is a great iPad app to get students introduced to basic coding skills. It sponsored by, which is a non-porfit foundation dedication to growing computer programming education. It is the first app ever created solely on an iPad using the app Codea

It features 36 fiendishly clever puzzles, haunting music and stunning retina graphics. You can even record your solutions and share them on YouTube to show your friends. (

We have seen students from all learning learning levels be successful with this powerful app. It has also been equally enjoyed by male and female students. I had a parent approach me last year and say, "I am very upset with you." I asked why and she replied, "I am now addicted to Cargo-Bot." This shows it is a game for all levels that requires persistence, problem solving, and deeper level learning. To refrain our students from using the guess and check method, they use laminated sheet to work out the code before trying it in the app. These sheets also allows students to work on their coding skills when the iPads are unavailable. 

Download Cargo-Bot
Download Codea.

Hopefully these tech tools with will help you change the game for you and your students!

Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

The Top Gun of EdTech Conference

I have spent the past several days trying to wrap my brain around everything that took place last week in San Francisco. It was a week full of meetings, sightseeing, learning, and making friends. 

The most important element of the week for me, was making new friends, and learning from the best of the best. That is why I call the CUE Rock Star Camp the Top Gun of EdTech conferences. It is an opportunity to learn from some of best. Some of the best included CUE Rock Star presenters like:
Karl and Sam modeling #caedchat shirts
I met many other amazing people Tuesday night at the live #patue chat and brewcue in Palo Alto. That is where I met Karl Lindgren-Streicher (@LS_Karl) Karl is an edcampHome organizer, PHISH fanboy, and #caedchat founder. He was one of my favorite people I have met this summer. He cares about education and will go out of his way to help others. I am a better person after meeting Karl and look forward to working with him in the future. 

I was also able to meet John Stevens aka Mr. T, for the first time that night. John is knowledge about education and helping students succeed in and out of the classroom. He is creating innovative ways for each student in his classes to become lifelong learners. He was nice enough to let Victoria and I take over part of his session a to talk about augmented reality. I have become a better educator because of John Stevens. 
Showing some augmented reality examples after John let us take over. 

During this trip, I finally got the chance to meet Victoria Olson face to face. We have communicated a lot through twitter, Google hangouts, and even worked together on projects throughout the summer. We spent a lot of time together meeting edtech start up companies like Drawp, Studyblue, and Remind 101. We found some time to explore San Francisco and completely nerd out talking education, and edtech. She is doing amazing things in Langley teaching a 3/4 split as well as being an edtech coach. I learned a great amount during our time together. She has a wealth of knowledge and has become a great friend. Our adventures was a highlight of the trip. 
Victoria, Brett Kopf, and I at Remind 101.

One of the most exciting parts of my trip was when I received a tweet from CUE Rock Star Camp's baby daddy, Jon Corippo(@jcorippo).  

I was pumped for a great opportunity to present what he called a "mini keynote." I was able to speak to the entire group during after lunch about Two Guys and Some iPads, our philosophy, and of course some augmented reality. Although the wifi was spotty, I just blamed it on the Honey Beaver. This opportunity also allowed me to join a small group to get access on the USS Hornet the night before the conference. We had a lot of fun exploring the Hornet with our amazing guide Kurt. It was a special night to meet and get to know some amazing people. 
Talking about Elements 4D during lunch session.
Speaking to rock stars during lunch. 

My trip allowed some time to sprinkle in sightseeing of San Francisco and Napa Valley. I was extremely fortunate to have family in the Bay area who went out of their way to help me enjoy my visit. Spending time with them was a special part of this trip out west. 

Enjoying the views of Napa Valley.

Dinner with my cousin Teena at Dead Fish. 

Sunset from Dead Fish patio.

Another sunset from the Dead Fish patio.

Checking out the Bay Bridge.

Bay Bridge and SF from Treasure Island.

Definitely playing Harding Park next time I'm in SF.

The famous SF Cable Car.

John Miller (@room162) kept a live blog from the camp including videos of the epic shred sessions. John Steven's Mr. T shred is a must watch! Check it out: