Apps, Augmented Reality, Education, K-12, Teaching Tools

Augmented Calendars

October Mystery Calendar

If you have not used Aurasma before, you might want to visit the Aurasma Tutorials page of Two Guys and Some iPads.  Also, you might want to visit my Flipboard magazine on Augmented Reality in Education or these other posts I have done in the past.

One thing that I have been meaning to do is to take advantage of the “Time Restrictions” setting in Aurasma Studio.  When creating an aura, you can set when the aura goes “live” and when the aura will no longer work.  I thought it would be fun to create a calendar that uses that feature. (Yes, I am fully aware that I have an odd idea of “fun.”)

I made a “Mystery Calendar” for October.  I found a list of historical people and events from October here, and chose 4 of them.  Then, I used iMovie to create short videos that gave clues about each one.  Because I have a Mac at home, I had a bit of trouble finding a good calendar template for the iWorks suite, but I finally landed on a good template for Numbers here.

Then, I searched for clip art on Pixabay.  Because I knew that I would be printing the calendars in black and white, I looked for symbols rather than color pictures.  This is where trial and error really came into play.  I finally found that the best trigger images included the number from the calendar cell.  So, I would insert an image in a cell, take a screen shot of the cell (command+shift+4 on a Mac), and use the screen shot as my trigger image in Aurasma Studio.

Once I had the trigger images and overlays uploaded, I added the auras.  You can see from the screen shot below that there is a “Time Restrictions” setting that is optional.

Aurasma Studio Time Restriction

Once you click on the arrow in that box, you can then set the aura to begin on a certain date and time, as well as to end on a certain date and time.  Both are optional.  I set each aura to start on the day that it is placed on the calendar, and did not set an end time.

Aurasma Time Restrictions

What are some other ways that you can use the Time Restrictions setting?  If you are using Aurasma for center directions that might change weekly, you can set a trigger image to have different overlays for each week of the year, if you like.  Or, you might be like me and have different grade levels each day of the week, so I can set my auras according to the day of the week.   If your students are making a holiday gift for their parents, they could set a photo to trigger an overlay beginning only on that special day. Or, how about making a countdown calendar (similar to the QR code one that I posted) that only needs one image – which changes overlays every day?  Schools could have one trigger image that parents scan every month when they enter building (or even from home) that offers new information each month.

I would love to hear any other ideas you may have.  In the meantime, here is the PDF of my October Mystery Calendar.  Be sure you are following the Hidden Forest Elementary channel if you decide to use it.  (The answers are:  Poe, Sullivan, Edison, and Houdini.)

UPDATE:  If you test your auras when creating them, they will be cached in your account.  This means that the time restrictions will not work on any device logged into the account you used to test them.  If you are a teacher, I recommend using a different account on your student devices than the one you use for Aurasma studio.  They can all follow the same channel, just not be logged into the same account.