Category Archives: 815Computers

Forced Perspective Photography

Forced Perspective is a super fun and interesting photography concept that isn’t all that hard to do, but it does take some practice. Unfortunately, it works best with more than one person, a lot of space, and ideally a good DSLR camera instead of your phone, so I won’t make you do this one, but I certainly will encourage you to give it a try!


Brief overview/how-to:

Great examples that you can try:

The Importance of Cleaning

Here’s some of the most important advice I can offer you. It’s simple:


Would you put your face up against a toilet seat? Probably not.

But, did you know that you can find MORE bacteria on your phone than you can on the average toilet seat? Eeeewww. You put that thing near your face a lot. Even if you never talk on it, you’re constantly touching your phone and then your face. All. Day. Long. You can’t help it!

When you go into a store these days, you almost always have to sanitize your hands. That drives me nuts, because one of the first things people often do when they enter the store is touch their phone or their wallet or keys or something like that, and you immediately contaminate the hands that you just cleaned!

Obviously, COVID-19 has drastically increased the danger in touching an unclean surface, but even if it wasn’t an issue or you have both shots or whatever, you can still protect yourself from a  wide variety of illnesses and issues by CLEANING YOUR PHONE OFTEN!

You can even clean your phone really well just soap, water, and a clean microfiber cloth

Un/Necessary Inventions!

Recently I discovered the greatest inventor of all time. Forget Alexander Graham Bell or Leonardo Da Vinci or Elon Musk, Matty Benedetto beats them all:

Sure, most of his inventions are pretty unnecessary, but some of them are kind of genius.

I can think of a bunch of students and adults who could really use one of these:

Check out the iDangle

the Slice Slicer

the Chip Extractor

Or one that I bet a lot of you could use, the Marathon Untility Controller

See! The guy’s got solutions to problems that you didn’t even know you had! Genius!

I want you to come up with an invention like his. It could be unnecessary or something that you could actually use!

Ways to make it look like you’re paying attention in a Teams meeting when you’re not? (actually, he’s got something kind of along those lines too!)

Corona Virus personal protective gear

School supplies that do your homework

Ways to keep your room clean without doing any work



Here’s the steps you need to follow:

  1. Figure out what the problem is that you wish to solve with your invention. Every good design starts with a problem that we need to solve. You’ll need to be able to explain the issue.
  2. Design your invention on Tinkercad. I want a 3D model that shows me what your invention looks like.
  3. Explain how your invention solves the problem. How is it going to make life better? How does it work? What will this invention allow you to do that you couldn’t before?
  4. Present your idea! You could make a video commercial explaining the problem and your solution. Or you could make a detailed PowerPoint where you design the slides yourself (choose your own backgrounds, fonts, colours, etc.) and add transitions and animations to make it look great. Or you could design an effective poster using Word or something like that, where you have photos or screenshots and information about your product.


I want to look at some examples and hear some presentations on June 9 and 10, so you need this done before June 9. You do not have to present to the class or show your work, but I am really hopeful that some people will. Your mark will be better if I can ask you questions and you can explain yourself.

We’ll talk more about it in our meetings leading up to those days.

Good luck and I can’t wait to see what you come up with!

First Video Project – part 4: Adjusting your Images & Credits

You can always remove a photo from your video if it doesn’t look good or you just don’t want it. For example, I used this photo under my title:

but then it was added to my timeline on its own afterward

If you want to get rid of a photo, just find it in the timeline, select it, and then backspace or delete and it should disappear and everything after it should shift over

You will notice that many of your photos will not properly fill the video frame, so there will be black bars on the sides or possibly on the top & bottom.

You can “scale” or zoom in on a photo to make it fit on screen properly.

You can open the “Effects” panel by looking on the right side of your screen under the word “Edit” and clicking on the pencil with the FX above it

Then you can click on an image in the program monitor

then you can use the “Motion” settings

and adjust the Scale slider or press the – or + buttons to resize

You can even just click on the little bubbles at  the sides & corners of the photo on the program monitor and drag to resize

Tall “Portrait” photos can be fixed in one of 3 ways:

Sometimes there’s part of the photo that you can just zoom in on and it’ll look good:

Use those Motion controls (the FX pencil) to Scale or stretch it out

Or sometimes a photo would look just fine rotated:

Under the Motion controls, click Rotate Left or Rotate Right


If you do that, you’ll likely have to Scale the photo to make it fit properly anyway:

OR you can put more than one photo on screen at the same time. Find two (or more) tall “Portrait” photos:

Drag one of them up onto the Video 2 track:

And slide it left or right until it’s over top of another tall photo

One photo will be right on top of the other, so you’ll probably only see one, but you can click on it and drag it over to reveal the one underneath. Move them both a bit to centre things, and then Scale the photos if you wish to fill the frame

Or find another one and put it on top on Video 3

Again, drag and scale as you wish to make things look good on screen

If you move a photo up onto another track, it will leave an empty space on your timeline where you will only see a black screen if you view that portion of the video

If you have those blank spaces, you need to Right Click on them and choose Delete and Close Gap to move everything over and fill that space

Once you’ve got all of your photos fixed up, it’s time to add the end credits.

Move your playhead to the end of your video

Just like in the beginning, go to the File menu, choose New, and Title

If you really liked the look of your opening title, you could always copy and paste elements from there if you wish.

I went back to my opening title and copied the main title

Click on the sliders under Fix

Highlight your text and copy (Ctrl + C or right-click)

Go back to the end and select the “Add Text” text

and paste in the other text (Ctrl + v or right-click)

IMPORTANT NOTE: you’ll have multiple lines of text for this one. They should be in the SAME TEXT BOX.

Hit Enter inside of the text box to jump to another line

Again, if you have text at the beginning that you’d like to paste, you can do that again

I highly recommend using both Align buttons

hit Enter a couple of times to leave some blank space

Add any credits you want! Director, producer, a dedication, your gaffer, grip, and best boy (all actual jobs on a movie set!) Add whatever you want. Have some fun with it! If you ever take the time to read the credits on a movie, they sometimes have some pretty funny ones on there and some goofy nicknames, so make it fun!


You need to include the following text: (copy and paste!)

All photos downloaded from

Music by Bensound:


If your other text is big, like mine, it’ll likely make a big mess when you paste that in

In this case, you’d probably want to make the text a lot smaller.

You can, however, also break that text up to fit on the screen.

Go into the Text menu and choose Word Wrap

That will break the text into lines that fit on screen

I do think that the text is too big for me

I highlighted my text and used the Size setting to adjust

Right now it’s just a title that doesn’t move, just like the one at the beginning, but the credits at the end of a movie “roll” up. To do that, just go back to that Text menu and open the Roll/Crawl Options

A “crawl” moves the text across the screen, left to right or right to left. We want it to “Roll”

I also really recommend having it Start Off Screen and End Off Screen

So my options look like this:

Go ahead and watch your credits by putting the playhead at the beginning and pressing play or the space bar

I noticed that the actual credits are pretty hard to read. That colour and font worked well for the bigger text that I used on my name, but not as well for the rest. Make sure your credits are clear and easy to read. I changed it so that mine look like this:

Watch your credits and try to read the text

For mine, 4 seconds was way too short. The credits rolled too quickly so it was hard to read it all.

You can lengthen the credits (or a photo) by clicking on the right edge of the block in the timeline and pulling it to the right

Making my credits 8 seconds looked much better!

Don’t forget to Save your work (although the program should be doing that for you) before you quit or move on to the next step!

First Video Project – part 3: Adding Media

Make sure that you’ve completed STEP 1 and STEP 2 before you attempt this step!


First, a quick little tour of the work area. At the top, you’ll see a big black box. That’s your Program Monitor. It’ll show you your video as you move along the Timeline

Below that is the actual Timeline. It starts at 0 seconds on the left, and stretches on toward the right as you build or view your movie

You can zoom in or out on your timeline by moving the little slider on the right or clicking the boxes next to it

When you want to watch your movie and move across the Timeline, you can press the Play button or the space bar.

There’s a red line with a blue pointer at the top that moves along the Timeline. That’s called the Playhead.

Down along the left side, you have different layers for audio and video. Just like Photoshop, the bottom layer (Video 1) is in the background and the layers on top will cover that background layer.


The first thing we’ll add to your Timeline is the title screen for your movie. You have two options:

You can either have your title show over a black screen:

or you can show it over a picture:

If you want it over a picture, you have to drag a picture into the Video 1 track. Choose a picture from your Project Assets:

and pull it down into the track:

You may see this warning. Turn on “Do not show again” and click Yes:


Either way, you need to go to the File menu, then choose New, then Title… (F9 is the shortcut)

You’ll see an “Add Text” box over top of either your photo or a black screen:

Highlight your text. ALWAYS CHANGE THE FONT. Make your own choice about what you think will look best!

You can also make your text Bold, Italics, or Underlined (just like in Word)

There’s a little paint pallette where you can choose your colour:

Choosing a colour requires two steps. You have to move the little slider bar on the spectrum:

Then you have to move the little colour selector dot onto the shade you want:

You can also choose to add a Drop Shadow

Or fill in your text with a Gradient effect

OR, you can choose from one of the preset Styles

Once you’ve chosen the style for your text, press Esc on your keyboard and you should see the boxes around your text that will allow you to stretch it to size and place it however you want

You may also align your text if you want it properly centered either horizontally or vertically


NEXT, you can choose to put in your MUSIC OR your PICTURES

I’ll start with the MUSIC.

Go into your Project Assets and find the music file you want to use. Drag that file  down into Audio 1 (you could also use the Music track if you wish, but I’ll use Audio 1 since we don’t have any other audio to add.)

As you move through your timeline, your music will play, even if you just move a little bit. This can get annoying after a while. You may wish to right-click on the audio track and turn off Enable. That will mute your audio for now.


Next, we’ll add the pictures

Go into your Project Assets. You may wish to turn off the icons for video and audio so you just see the images:

If you have a specific order in mind for your photos, you’ll have to drop them into the Video 1 track individually. This can be very effective if you want to group certain types of photos together. You can click on individual photos and drag them down, just like you did with the music.


If you want to do it the quick and easy way and not worry about the specific order (although you certainly can still reorder them any way you like), you want to find your first picture and click on it

Then, scroll down and find the last photo. Hold SHIFT and CLICK on it to select everything in between:

Again, just drag them down into your timeline

Your photos should play in order for 4 seconds each (if you changed the preferences…)

SAVE your work! You’re now ready for the next step!

Right now, my video looks like this:

First Video Project – part 2: Creating the Project

Before you begin, make sure that you have downloaded at least 25 photos and one music file into your OneDrive folder! If you haven’t done that, check the instructions for Step 1 and finish that first!


Open Premiere Elements. You should see it on your desktop:

Or search for it with the Search bar at the bottom or open the Windows menu in the bottom left

The first window offers you the choice of Photo Editor, Organizer, or Video Editor. We need the Video Editor.

Before you start the project, you should check a couple of preferences. Open the Edit menu

and then go to the bottom and choose Preferences, and go into General

There are a lot of different sections of preferences. Start with General

The first thing I like to change is the Video Transition Default Duration. The length of time is measured in frames. There are 30 frames in a second. If you want a slow, gentle transition (if you have slow, soft music) 30 is probably fine

I like half a second, so I change mine to 15 frames

I like the Still Image Default Duration to be about 4 seconds

I like the Timeline Playback Auto-Scrolling to be on Smooth Scroll

Then just make sure the checkmarks are all on the bottom items

The other tab I like to check is Auto Save:

The program will save your work as you go. I like mine to save about every 5 minutes or less. You don’t want it saving too often because it’ll slow you down, but you don’t want to lose too much work if/when the program crashes.


Next, you can create your Project file. You can do that under the File menu or with Control+N

Name your project. NEVER leave it as “My Project!”

You want to Save the project into the folder you created in your OneDrive. This is important! Click Browse…

Find that folder that you created for the project:

and press Select Folder

First, we want to import the photos and the music. Click Add media:

Click Files and folders:

Again, look for the folder for your project:

You’ll notice that there’s a bunch of folders in your project folder now. Leave those alone!

We want to select everything else. Click ONCE on the top photo (or music if it’s at the top)

Hold Shift and click the bottom photo or music file to select them all

You’ll see that a lot of files have been added to the box at the bottom. Click Open.

You’ll see all of your files imported into the project:  

You can sort the folder by turning on or off the little icons at the top. I would hide everything except the images

Save your file because it’s time to start putting the pieces into the video:




First Video Project – part 1: Finding Media

One of my very favourite things to do on a computer is to make videos. I find it a really fun and creative way to use technology. We’ll start with a simple video featuring a theme of your choice!

Before you do anything else:

  1. Make sure OneDrive is running on your computer

2. Make a NEW FOLDER for your video project! At the top of the File Explorer window, you’ll see a New folder button. Click it!

Give your folder a name that tells you what it’s for.



You’ll need two things before you can start putting together the video: music and pictures. You can choose which to find first, whether to try to find music to fit the pictures or pictures to fit the music.

Music: Sadly, we are not going to be using your favourite song. We’ll hopefully be posting some of these on YouTube, so we are going to respect copyright and use music that you are legally allowed to use in your projects. Some creators post their music online and do not require payment for the rights to use it. There are two sites that I really like:

Bensound – This one is really quick and easy, and there’s a lot of great stuff available. You can choose a genre/sound from the tabs at the top, or use the search bar to look for a particular instrument or feel (eg: rock guitar). You can also see what is most popular.

Once you find a song that looks interesting, you can preview it with the green play button:

Make sure you are looking at a song that has a DOWNLOAD button:

The ones with a PURCHASE button cost money! Don’t choose one of those!

You can see what is allowed and what you have to do to give credit:

Most creators like to get credit for their work. Bensound makes it really easy. In the credits for your movie, you can include:



I also often use a site called ccmixter

Click that link and you’ll come to a page where you can preview and download instrumental music to use in your project

You can also search for different genres, instruments, and moods at THIS LINK using the Tag Search

You can preview the songs with the play button and download with the other button

For this site, you need to include more information in your credits. I recommend opening a Word document and pasting the creator info into the document for future reference. You can click Copy to Clipboard and then paste that into your Word document. Press Download to, uh, download.


PHOTOS: The absolute best site for photos for this project is Unsplash. It will make your job really easy.

You will need to pick a theme. You can pick an item, like a car, dog, or guitar (for example) or choose a colour or even a mood. These are REAL PHOTOS taken by real people. They are usually not photos of famous people or fictional characters. Sorry, but your favourite Anime character isn’t going to work here. Pick something else. Ask me if you’re having trouble or not sure your idea is good. Put your theme idea into the search box.

You will need 25-30 photos MINIMUM. When you find a photo you like, click on the ARROW in the bottom right corner. DO NOT CLICK ON THE PHOTO.

Your photos need to ALL BE IN THE FOLDER FOR YOUR PROJECT. I find that Firefox makes this easiest. I recommend using Firefox. If you use Chrome, you will have to MOVE YOUR PHOTOS INTO THE FOLDER LATER.

Firefox will allow you to save your photos directly into the correct folder:

If you want to make your video extra impressive, you can save the creator information for each photo in a Word document. This is really nice, and much appreciated, but NOT NECESSARY.



Replying to an Email

Make sure that you’ve read and completed the first part of the assignment before you try this one. You won’t be able to do this right unless you correctly send the first message!

Part one instructions

After you send me the email described in part one, I’ll send you a Reply, which I then want you to Reply to.

When I send you my reply, you’ll see it in your Inbox. It’ll look something like this:

Click on it to open the message and read it

There are two ways to reply:

with the first curved back arrow at the top:

or with the button at the end that says Reply

You need to be able to see my message because I want you to cut out the parts that aren’t relevant to your reply. To do that, you’ll need to click on the three dots to Show message history:

You should now see my message below a line. If you missed it above, read the message. You’re going to select ONE of the questions I asked and respond to it.

Emails can get super long and annoying if you don’t cut out all of the old and unnecessary bits from your reply. Getting in the habit of erasing all of the parts EXCEPT what you’re responding to is super important!

Leave the information about who sent the message when alone. Highlight the parts of my message that you don’t want to reply to and delete those. All you’ll be left with is something like this:

You should also delete your original message which you’ll see below. Highlight and delete:

Then go back up to the top, above the line, and write another email with a greeting, the answer to the question, a signoff, and your name.

It should look something like this:

Once you’ve got that AND ONLY THAT, press Send and send it back to me! I probably won’t respond this time (but I might) but I will give you a mark for doing this correctly!

How to Email

It’s time you social media DM experts finally got around to writing a proper email. Email is a very common, very valuable method of communication, but a lot of people don’t know how to do it well. We’ll make sure that you do after this assignment.

Go to your Outlook inbox

The first step is to click New Message

The email address you are sending the message to goes in the “To” box

There are two ways to input a destination for the email. You can type in the email address VERY CAREFULLY! If even one letter is wrong, your email could end up being sent to someone you don’t even know, or it could just not go through.

You will also have an address book, which makes it easier to email people you have corresponded with in the past or people who are part of your school community. All of your teachers are already in the address book! All you have to do is start typing in a teacher’s name, and it will pop up.

BE CAREFUL that you choose the right address! When you type in rob, you will also see Mr. Robertson, or another similar name.

If you wanted to send a copy of the email to someone else as well, you could put that in the CC (Carbon Copy) box. (you don’t actually have to do that here, but just so you know)

You can even send a “secret” copy to someone using BCC (Blind Carbon Copy). I use this option when I’m sending a message out to all of the parents in a class. When I do it this way, the parents don’t get to see the names and email addresses of everyone I’m sending the message to, which is super important for privacy reasons.

The next important box is the Subject line. This needs to be kept short and needs to tell the person you are emailing what it is that you are emailing about. You do not write a whole sentence in there, just a few words that tell the person why you’re contacting him/her. Click in the Add a subject box:

MAKE SURE YOU PUT IN THE CORRECT SUBJECT LINE HERE! I’m going to get over 300 emails, so you have to help me out and make sure you do this exactly right or your email will get lost in my cluttered inbox and you will not get the marks!

Your subject line should be your room# and then Outlook Email. (e.g. 601 Outlook Email or 819 Outlook Email, etc.) You can copy and paste the words below and add your room number and a space if it’s easier

Outlook Email


Next you will greet the person you are writing to. Most of the time, we use the word Dear, but you could also use Hello, or Greetings, or something like that. Again, if it’s easier, you can copy/paste from here:

Dear Mr. Robson,

Leave a blank line and then start writing your email.

For your message, I would like you to tell me about something you’re interested in or something you know a lot about, and why you enjoy it. Tell me all about your favourite video game, book, anime, ice cream flavour, or whatever you want! I want to know a bit more about what you like.

Your message doesn’t have to be more than a few sentences. You could do something similar to this:

Then leave another blank line and sign off. Some common ways of signing off are:


You can also use things like Thank you, All the best, See you tomorrow, etc.

Then you’ll leave another blank space and write your name: (just your first name is fine, but you can put the whole thing if you like. Your full name is more formal and sounds more “proper” but you would be more informal and friendly with someone you know.)

Your complete message will look something like this:

If you want, you can take some time to make your message look better by using some of the formatting tools available at the bottom:

Read your message over to make sure that your email makes sense and doesn’t contain any obvious errors. Spelling doesn’t really count for this assignment, but your email will ALWAYS look better if you try to spell things correctly and format everything right.

Once you’re done, click Send!

Once you’ve done that, I will send you a message back, which you will Reply to for the second part of the assignment!

Coding with The Artist

Learn how to create art using code by creating shapes and designs!

Start by completing this course which will teach you how it works:

After you’re done the course, up at the top of the screen next to your username, click Create

Choose Artist 

Have fun and create something really impressive! Again, you’ll get two marks, one for how well you use the possibilities (use different commands, loops, variables, etc.) and one for making something that looks amazing.

You should have a lot of code to show off. Please make it look like you spent a lot of time creating your art. If it’s really simple, your mark will not be great. Take your time!

At some point, you need to Rename your file to match the content

You can just use the title of the assignment if you like:

When you’re SURE that you’ve done a great job, you will need to Share a Link

Make sure you press Save

At the top of the screen, click Share

You’ll need to click on the link to highlight it (it’ll turn blue)

Then you need to COPY (press Ctrl and C) or right click and choose Copy

Once you have the link copied, go back to Teams and click on the Assignment

You will need to Add work:

And this time you are handing in a Link

Paste in the address that you copied:

And give your link a name (copy me if you like):

Press Turn In (or Turn In Late) when you are done!

You will also need to provide a bit of a Reflection by attaching a document in Teams explaining:

What you learned and a bit about what you did to create your art.
Tell me what you like about your work/the assignment
Tell me what you had trouble with or wish you could have done differently

Attach a document with the answers to those questions in Teams for full marks.