Peace and quiet

and a break.

On a good work day, my collection of tabs looks like this.

On a not-so-good day, there are far more open tabs.

I always have some sort of media on in the background. That’s my routine. I don’t seem to be able to work in absolute peace and quiet. Now, there can be a problem when I get a phone or video call. I typically answer right away and then realize that there’s something playing somewhere.

Usually, there’s a little speaker in the offending tab but you don’t see it above because it’s open in another window at present.

In the past, I would go scrambling to find the tab and mute it or head for the volume control and/or mute to shut things off. It can be even more comical if I have more than one tab playing at the time.

However, the Vivaldi browser has a neat feature. Now, Vivaldi has a lot of neat features like built-in adblocking and sometimes it takes a bit of exploring to find new-to-me features. I noticed this the other day.

It’s located in the status bar and looks kind of like the application switcher on Android. I had to check it out.


I clicked it once and my tabs went all like this.

They’re all still there; they’ve just been hidden from my sight. And not for the current window but for all tabs, all windows. And the tab playing Stingray music on the Fibe app has gone quiet and dark in the other window.

What a great feature! Now, I’m sure that there might well be an extension/add-on somewhere that I could install but I do like to keep control of the number of additions to the basic browser. Vivaldi has it built right in.

It’s funny; when I found it, I thought it was just a cutesy feature but now that I actually use it, I realize that I use this feature way more than I ever thought I would.

You can try out the Vivaldi browser by downloading it from Vivaldi browser – Fast, private browser with unique features.

OTR Links 09/23/2020

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

An example of what to do

Over the weekend, Beth Lyons shared one of her current projects.

You can access the resource here:

There’s a lot to like about this resource. The content is all easily accessible from the navigation menu on the left. That makes it easy to navigate for teachers / grownups as they work their way through it.

Above and beyond the technical stuff, this is the sort of thing that we need right now. It’s specific and gets you quickly to the good stuff that you need.

We talk about the value of teacher-librarians but here’s an example of what can we done when the role is taken seriously and the desire is strong to put resources directly in the hands of the audience. In essence, it’s a portal to just what is needed but not too much that it becomes overwhelming.

Some of the resources are very specific to teachers and grownups in the Peel District School Board so it’s not a link that you can pass along to everyone in the province. However, it is an wonderful example for others to follow.

Above and beyond the content, it’s important to note that most of the content is available to anyone with an internet connection. It’s not hidden behind some security wall requiring a login/password just to access. That’s worth a million these days. We all juggle many accounts; who needs another?

This approach could be replicated by others, including subject associations whose worth is determined by the support they’re delivering right now during these challenging times.

Well done, Beth. I hope that this inspires others to create similar resources for their schools. It sends a message about technology and a more serious open message about support and williness to get the job done.

OTR Links 09/22/2020

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Lots and lots of toys

We certainly are living in a time of challenges in schools and educations. Rules are everywhere – don’t touch this, don’t touch that. Many teachers are finding their use of traditional manipulatives hampered or completely out of bounds depending upon school / board rules.

Fortunately, there are many great applications for your and your students’ computers that are available. You may be delighted when you hit the motherload by going to the Toy Theater | Fun Online Educational Games for Kids (

I think we’ve all become aware of many powerful manipulates for the computer specifically for mathematics classroom. This site definitely has you covered there. Here’s but a sample.

But, you’re covered for more than just mathematics here.

Whether it’s a BYOD classroom, teacher with a projector, or activities to be done at home, you’re only limited by your imagination.

Check it out; the site has been around for years and has established itself as a great place to go.

Your concerns should include privacy and you’re nicely covered.

Plan to set aside some time for yourself to explore. There’s so much to be explored.