Find Out If You Have Racked Up Any Frequent Flyer Miles Before Booking A Flight

When it comes to travel, no matter for pleasure or business, it’s important that you plan the trip with plenty of time. The following tips can assist you. Heli skiing Canada is the ultimate powder skiing experience where helicopters are used to escape from crowded lift lines and access an incredible wilderness

Create a packing list of what to pack.

If you’re traveling somewhere where you’ll need tickets, like amusement parks or a play, and print them beforehand. The small fee per ticket for such a service is well worth it when you consider the lines that you can avoid. If the park you are visiting has a timed entry, printed tickets can also be used to get around the admission line.

A motorcycle is a great transportation for short travels. It can be a bit of fun to travel by motorcycle.

Join travel forums and social websites centered around travel. Getting connected with others that travel is a great way to get prepared for your trip. This will put you make friends and share experiences to avoid making their mistakes or missing some great spots on your own trip.

Avoid rush hour traffic when setting out on your trip. If that is absolutely unavoidable, use that time to stop for a break. This can be the optimal time to go grab a while.

These sheets can be a flat surface to put cards on or color in coloring books.

Find out as soon as possible whether you require a visa to get into the country you are traveling to. It is a good idea to apply for a visa months before you have to travel, so it is a good idea to apply for your visa far in advance of your expected departure date.

You probably don’t need any extra insurance the salesman wants to push on you. Vehicle insurance policies often have basic third party coverage.

Pack a couple of travel candles if you plan on staying in hotels during your hotel stay. This will make the smell in your room more appealing. The smells can be relaxing, and it may help you sleep better.

Some places have great sounding in their walls.A reliable pair of earplugs can help block out the noise and let you a restful night’s sleep.

If you run into issues in your plans, you will feel frustrated. You may experience a delay in your flight or not get the car you reserved. The discussion is between you and an employee that likely did not make the agent in charge. At the beginning, you’ll care about solving this, but it is simple for one party to lose control. Try staying polite and stay calm throughout.You can get more accomplished this way so that your trip is less stressful.

Remember to bring your medications. It can be almost impossible to get a prescription filled in a foreign country when you need.

Tip generously as you can afford. Give the steward a nice tip when boarding the ship. The same members of the crew will probably serve you the whole trip, so the nicer you are to them, they are more likely to take excellent care of you.

If you are traveling for several hours at a stretch, make sure to get up at least once an hour to stretch your legs, even if you have to take an unneeded restroom break. Sitting for too long could cause health problems.

Be honest when you buy travel insurance. Tell the provider of any illness you are sick. You will be left with the bill.

If you are going somewhere truly remote, you might want to consider purchasing travel insurance that covers search and rescue.This kind of insurance could be a real lifesaver.

Invite friends along on your trip next time. Many destinations provide discounts for larger groups. You can save tons of cash on anything from dining to airfare simply by getting a group rates. Speak with the people close to you and see if they are interested.

When traveling, especially traveling for business, the temptations will be plenty. Rather than hitting the buffet, visit the hotel gym instead. This keeps you in shape and will definitely keep your energy levels up.

Be sure to carry valuables with you when a bus stops for maintenance or for a layover.

If you are bringing a pet, then make sure you find a hotel that accepts pets and find out if there’s any fees that go along with having a pet stay with you.

Research local laws and customs of the place your trip. You may have to face consequences for doing things that are viewed as offensive or illegal, even if you don’t know you are doing it. Always be respectful of the laws of the places you are traveling.

This would completely ruin your cruise entirely. You will end up confined to your cabin instead of enjoying yourself on deck. If you discover this is an issue prior to your trip, get a prescription for a sea sickness medication and take it with you.

Pick which one suits you get to the airport the easiest.

Female travels may find advantages in wearing a shawl rather than a coat. This will help keep you warm your feet and can be easy to carry. It can also cover up any valuables that are in your car.

If you are going on a trip, proper planning will make your travel more comfortable click here. You’re not going to be worried or anxious when you have properly planned, and you can instead rest and have confidence as you enjoy yourself.

Embracing a New Model for the Creation of Skincare Products

AlpStories Inc., based in Atlanta, Georgia, is a personalized organic skincare line for women. The company’s proprietary robotic technology enables customers to self-create skincare products to meet their own unique needs. All skincare products have the highest possible share of pure organic ingredients and are made-to-order, containing carefully selected bioactive botanicals from the Alps, one of the purest places on Earth. Best lip fillers Sydney is one of our most commonly requested procedures because adding volume and shape to the lips adds sensuality to the entire face.

AlpStories – Where Nature meets Future
Each customer creates her own unique and quality organic skin care products via a smart factory on the phone or through the website. There are millions of different variations depending on ingredients, fragrances, concentration, skin need… all individualized to a woman’s skin.

AlpStories – A brief history
The rich experience of the founding team led to the realization that there is a new trend of personalization of technology and skincare products. People differ in their views and needs in taking care of their bodies and relationship with their own skin health. And because we are all different, we also need a formula that meets the needs of our individual skin. At the same time, the founders researched ways to use robotic technology for efficient mass customization.

That sparked the idea of AlpStories in 2014, a new model for personalization of skin and hair care products while leveraging the power of pure organic ingredients from the Alps. The founders came up with a unique solution to these challenges and found a way to mix organic ingredients in a fast and efficient manner, while automating the process of ordering, filling and even personalized branding. A vital part in this process is the combination of the BeautyWizard, an online diagnostic tool (with a precise algorithm) that acts as a smart factory for the consumer, and a robot that manufactures personalized skincare products in real time.

The founding team of AlpStories is made up of skincare industry experts and includes Danijel Hubman and Oksana Lipitska in Slovenia, together with Paul Nunnari and Astrid Androsch in the United States.

All truly organic skincare products and the tool to customize facial creams are readily available via, the BeautyWizard (and robotic system) allowing customers to create millions of variations will be launched in the US market in early November 2018.

“AlpStories and our personalized process for organic skincare brings the future to consumers in 2018. We are excited to offer this to the US market place through our online site We believe that we will meet the consumers individual needs – Where Nature truly meets Future.”
– Paul Nunnari, President of AlpStories

Bloomex Supports Movember Australia with Donations at Checkout

Bloomex is proudly participating in the Movember Foundation’s annual Movember campaign, which challenges men to grow a moustache, men and women to get physically active and Move, or host a fundraising event – all of which spark conversations and raise vital funds and awareness for men’s health. In any country, charity donation tax deduction is always implemented.

To help provide funds for Movember Foundation programs and research into men’s health initiatives, Bloomex is offering a donation at checkout option. Customers will have the option to donate $5 at checkout for any order at throughout the month of November.

The Movember Foundation is the only global charity focused solely on men’s health. Men and women can be the difference this Movember by donating or raising critical funds for men’s health, by signing up at, and choosing to Grow, Move or Host.

Men start Movember 1st clean-shaven and grow only a moustache for the month, or men and women can commit to get active and take the Move Challenge or can host an event. Participants get friends, family, or colleagues to donate to their efforts to change the face of men’s health.

“Bloomex is delighted to help support the Movember cause,” says Sue McDonald, Director of PR and Corporate Partnership at Bloomex. “With the support of our customers and the innovative research made possible by Movember, we can help men live longer, healthier and happier lives.”

About Bloomex Australia

Bloomex Australia is one of the largest florists in Australia since launching in 2011. Orders are taken and processed through the company’s site at or by Live Chat, and then delivered to customers via local courier. In addition to flowers, Bloomex AU offers a variety of other gift items including plants, gift hampers, gourmet foods, sweets and treats. Bloomex is the largest florist in Canada in addition to serving the US and Australia.

About Movember Foundation
The Movember Foundation has one goal: to stop men dying too young. As the only global charity tackling men’s health issues year-round, the foundation supports the following causes: prostate cancer, testicular cancer, mental health, and suicide prevention. Since 2003, the support of more than 5 million men and women has funded over 1,200 innovative projects across more than 20 countries. To donate or learn more, please visit

Longboard Surfboard Ultimate Versatility in Longboard Surfboards

Avid and beginner surfers agree: the longboard surfboard provides the ultimate in versatility when it comes to performance. This classically designed surfboard style offers several features that accommodate different surfing techniques. By virtue of its name, this is the longest of all the surfboard styles with a wide platform. Long and wide makes it simple for new surfers to find their center of gravity and provides extra stability for seasoned surfers when performing advanced maneuvers. Which surfing app is stable at the moment? Anyone has an idea feel free to comment.

A longboard surfboard is available in different lengths, so be sure to choose the one that best suits your style and level of expertise. Beginner surfers may feel more comfortable on the shorter side of long. A ten foot board can be heavy and awkward to carry and hard to straddle if you’re a surfing newbie. Additionally, it can feel clumsy in the water. The more proficient you become, the longer you can get with your board. Experience riders can take surfing to the next level with the longer longboards and perform maneuvers like nose-riding and backwards take-offs while enjoying the added stability of the board’s length.

Consider the different board constructions, as well, when looking into a longboard surfboard. A surfing board made from fiberglass offers different qualities than those of epoxy construction. Just as longboards are classic, so is the fiberglass construction. Pros of this construction type are a smooth, even ride with a predictable response to wave patterns. Be careful, though, this type of board can get very heavy, so be sure you can support its weight under your arm as you carry it. Epoxy boards offer a lighter material that is more earth friendly than its fiberglass counterpart. They can be quick and snappy in a wave, too, giving you an awesome surfing experience. The downfall to the epoxy construction is that they decompose more quickly when exposed to direct sunlight and can feel stiff in the water.

So what happens when you choose a longboard surfboard that is made of the perfect combination of fiberglass and epoxy? You become the envy of new and veteran surfers. Your surfing longboard offers the best of both worlds when it is made of NexGen materials. Highly regarded as the perfect blend between construction materials, enjoy the lightweight feel of an epoxy without sacrificing the give and forgiveness found in a fiberglass board. Longboard surf your way to an expert level quickly with this crafty design!

Marketing Your Pilates Sessions

Are you Wasting your Time?

Picture the scene, you are in the supermarket, at the gym, at a social event. You are introduced to a person or they approach you with the opening line, ” I hear you teach Pilates, what’s it all about? Nutritionist Northern Beaches ensures that you will energize because eating consciously is like meditating.

It is easy to launch into a whole story about the history of Joseph Pilates, his internment, his flight from Germany to the US, meeting Clara his wife blahblahblah….


Someone has pushed your button, if you are not careful you will either bore them rigid because they were only being polite, making small talk or you will completely waste your time.

So think about this. When we decide to do something, change our behavior in some way:

Stop smoking

Take up exercise

Start smoking (just kidding)!

We go through Six Stages of Change, this process was identified by James Prochaska and Carlo DiClemente in the late 1970s and early 80s at the University of Rhode Island, when they were studying how smokers give up their addiction.


-Pre-contemplation. Ignorance is bliss, the person has no desire to change behavior.

-Contemplation. Acknowledgment of the need for change but not ready.

-Preparation. Getting ready

-Action. Changing behavior

-Maintenance. Maintaining behavior changes

-Relapse. Returns to old behavior, abandons the changes

Let’s get back to the party. You have just met someone who throws out the comment “what’s this Pilates all about?” Depending which STAGE OF CHANGE they are at will determine your response.

How can you tell?

A few simple questions will quickly let you know how far long the process they are, or if they are just filling in time waiting for more interesting company. Your first response to the “what’s it all about” should be short and sweet. Practice a concise reply, e.g. “its a body conditioning system that will improve posture, tone and shape”. Sometimes that is the end of the conversation about Pilates and they change the subject. Pre-contemplation.

If they continue with questions, ask them for their contact details so you can send information to them. This causes a couple reactions:

They tell you they are looking at various options Contemplation

They are happy to give you details. Preparation

Avoid getting into detailed explanations in a nonprofessional atmosphere. They won’t remember anyway. If they are happy to give you contact details, suggest you make an appointment for a consultation. They may not be ready to commit to an appointment.


Make sure you send the information as promised. Always carry your business card and or schedule so you can quickly hand it to them even if they don’t want to go further than a basic inquiry. This way they may contact you when they are ready.

Always follow up. Whether you post out hard copy information or send it by e mail when you think they should have received the information contact them to confirm receipt. Avoid trying to move them forward in the process at this point. Your contact is purely to confirm they have received the information and to answer any questions.

Finish this conversation/email by asking their permission to contact them again. This will stop the feeling of the cold call and give them the opportunity to stop you contacting them. They will feel in control.

The second follow up should come 3-5 days later. This time the enquiry is about any further questions and some kind of incentive to make an appointment either to attend a class or consultation for a personal training session.

The third and final follow up at this stage, assuming they have not made any commitment to classes or personal training is to acknowledge they are obviously very busy, that you will not contact them again other than to update them on new events, classes and offers. This will sometimes move them towards the Action stage. If it doesn’t then you can keep them on the database with their permission to keep in touch.

Of course you want the process to be smooth so they move into the Action and Maintenance stages. During this time we are developing a stronger relationship with them, it is in our ongoing business interest to keep this relationship alive, creative and happy.

It is a natural cycle of life that the Relapse stage will come along at some point. Maybe they just break routine by going on holiday, family of work commitments change and the process starts all again.

This time however the initial stages will move along more quickly as it is a familiar place for them and the decision making process will be easier. Of course we want them to return to us so the relationship we have built must be maintained, even if they are in their Relapse phase, keep in touch, so that when the Action stage comes around again they know where to go and that they will be welcomed back with a smile.

These Six Stages of Change relate to any behavior changes and the sooner you get to grips with recognising the various ways to interpret your potential new clients reaction and connect to one of the six stages, the sooner you will be able to join the conversation.

Nuala Coombs –

About Nuala Coombs. With over 25 years experience in the fitness and Pilates industry Nuala has taught hundreds of students worldwide to teach Pilates. She is the author of Golf and Pilates published in 2005 as well as an international presenter and teacher trainer. Based in the south of France along with teacher training and workshops she offers career guidance to teachers in training and qualified Pilates teachers at a crossroads in their working life. Nuala also offer Pilates Retreats for Pilates enthusiasts. Contact her to sign up for her free monthly Newsletter at

Email: [email protected]

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It Makes Sense To Choose Us As The Venue For Your Next Charity Event

It Makes Sense To Choose Us As The Venue For Your Next Charity Event

When you are looking at your options for Charity Venue Hire In The Uk with an interest in making your latest event your most successful yet, it’s easy to become overwhelmed by just one or two great things about a specific venue, which may mean you fail to consider the bigger picture. Exuding a richness of grandeur, style and sophistication, Baroq is one of small function rooms Melbourne the most prestigious event spaces and is setting a new benchmark for function venues.

What Do We Mean By “the Bigger Picture”?

Well, you may, for example, be wooed by a certain venue’s history and physical presence, and there’s no doubt that our own charity event venue, Shendish Manor, has no shortage of both.

This former country house’s Victorian splendour gives just a hint of its rich past, which also includes its ownership by the famous Longman family of publishers and use as a British Army camp during World War I. But on the inside, it’s no less formidable, not least thanks to such spaces as the Apsley Suite and the elegant and historic Manor House, with its Longman suite.

Indeed, this brings us nicely onto the subject of practicality when you are considering charity venue hire in the UK. Shendish Manor has become one of the most popular and respected wedding and meeting venues in Hertfordshire, in large part due to the large capacity of our suites and our many spacious and comfortable bedrooms for attendees who need to stay overnight.

The given venue’s location and transport connections also count for a great deal if you want as many people as possible to be able to attend your charity event. Despite its green and rural setting, Shendish Manor is just 30 minutes away by train from central London, while it takes less than 10 minutes to drive here from such other nearby towns as Watford and Hemel Hempstead.

Anyone who does stay overnight with us in one of our well-appointed rooms can even relax by teeing off on our venue’s very own acclaimed 5660 yard, par 70 golf course, designed to USPGA specifications.

Make Us Your Preferred Option For Charity Venue Hire In The Uk

Truly, if you are on the lookout for the ‘complete’ charity event venue, you would struggle to find a better option anywhere in the UK than Shendish Manor – if we dare say so ourselves!

Contact us now about how you can book one or more of our spaces for your charity’s next big event, and we will discuss with you all of the other measures that our team can take to help make it the same kind of hugely successful undertaking as the rest of the special events we hold. May we wish you the very best of luck!

Planning For Interactive Media Instruction


Many organizations today are seeking to accomplish several main goals with regard to e-learning. The number one goal of e-learning (also referred to as distributed learning) is knowledge management, where both explicit and implicit types of knowledge can be archived and exploited for organizational use. For most organizations, the goal of developing interactive media instruction (IMI) relates to this overarching goal, by creating instructional or training materials that can be used to help workers to perform better on the job. Instructional systems design (ISD) theory promotes best practices in terms of both development and implementation of e-learning initiatives. In a very real way, the ISD process provides a road map for creation of training products, helping courseware developers to tailor their product to the knowledge and training needs of learners. Concept Artist tend to work in entertainment fields, where the creation of non-existent entities is in constant demand.

One main criticism of IMI has been a charge that much of the courseware built for asynchronous learning platforms is plagued by low affective and social stimulation as well as by a purely presentational characteristic (Hines & Pearl, 2004). Another criticism of instructional design practices within e-learning communities is that such courses only give the learner information in the form of page turners. This sentiment is often summarized by the phrase “information is not instruction” to warn of the perils of expecting knowledge to come solely from exposure to information.

A central challenge to instructional designers is to create learning events using interactive media platforms and learning objects which inspire critical thinking, application of concepts, and synthesis of ideas. For example, the use of Performance/Knowledge pairs in the design of courseware serves this objective. Under this paradigm, the instructional designer identifies and concept or principle (knowledge) which is reinforced by providing the learner with opportunities to apply that concept or knowledge piece in problem solving.

The Instructional Design Process

The Criterion Referenced Instruction (CRI) framework developed by Robert Mager is a comprehensive set of methods for the design and delivery of training programs. CRI critical aspects include: (1) goal/task analysis — to identify what needs to be learned, (2) performance objectives — exact specification of the outcomes to be accomplished and how they are to be evaluated (the criterion), (3) criterion referenced testing — evaluation of learning in terms of the knowledge/skills specified in the objectives, (4) development of learning modules tied to specific objectives (Kearsley, 2006).

Applying Principles of CRI:

1. Instructional objectives are derived from job performance and reflect the competencies (knowledge/skills) that need to be learned.

2. Students study and practice only those skills not yet mastered to the level required by the objectives.

3. Students are given opportunities to practice each objective and obtain feedback about the quality of their performance.

4. Students should receive repeated practice in skills that are used often or are difficult to learn.

5. Students are free to sequence their own instruction within the constraints imposed by the pre-requisites and progress is controlled by their own competence (mastery of objectives).

Using the ADDIE Process

The ADDIE process is another heuristic procedure which can be used to great benefit when planning events associated with building content for an IMI course.

Beginning with the analysis phase, a complete instructional design plan should include answers to the following questions.

1. What is the instructional problem and are there any specific goals for the instructional program itself?

2. What are learner characteristics and how will that influence your instructional decisions?

3. Have you identified both the subject content and task components that relate to the instructional goals and objectives?

During the design phase, it follows that the next logical step is to address issues related to the makeup of the course content, which encompasses the main objectives for the instruction. Specifically, once the objectives have been identified, it is time to develop the proper sequence for the instruction. The following questions can be reviewed.

1. How will the content be sequenced within each instructional unit?

2. What instructional strategies will be used so that learners can master the objectives?

3. What resources will be made available to the student?

4. How will learning be assessed?

Design of IMI Courseware

The actual design of interactive courseware requires a bit of artistry as well as an understanding of pedagogy. There are a few basic design principles of interface design that more bits of wisdom, and aesthetic judgments about what is pleasing to the eye than rules or guidelines. In order to create quality instructional experiences for the learner, the interface designer’s role involves creating navigational ease through effective use of windows, backgrounds, icons, and control panels (Vaughn, 2004).

In terms of best practices for exploiting technology and multimedia for teaching, indications are that e-learning can be best facilitated through well-designed courses using several types of instructional media with differing characteristics (e.g., synchronous vs. asynchronous, high-bandwidth vs. low bandwidth, contextualized vs. decontextualized). The interface design chosen should be consistent and aesthetically pleasing to orient the learner and gain their attention.

The use of storyboards as a planning tool allows design teams to describe a project in detail, by using sketches and words to define screen images, sound, navigation choices, colors, fonts, and text content (Vaughn, 2004). The advantage of creating storyboards-either more or less detailed-is that they allow you to see what design elements will be required before beginning work. For example, based on the design of the storyboard, a design team may choose to task different project implementation steps to specialists (for e.g., graphic designers or multimedia specialists) who can lend their expert talents and capabilities to the overall project management plan. A simple way to get started with storyboards is by using a PowerPoint program to capture the main concepts for a given presentation or lesson.

Page Layout

Creating a basic page layout should be planned as follows. First, organize the information on the web page clearly and in a logical flow. Place adequate amount of information on a screen. Use shorter lines of text if the web page is intended to be read on-screen. Place the important information at the top of the web page. Appropriately use white space to increase the page’s visual appeal. And finally, choose the right screen size to design the course web pages.

Navigation buttons are common elements of navigation (“back”, “next,” “forward”) so that the learner can move through the material. Buttons or navigation arrows should be placed at the edge of the screen. The reason for this is mostly ergonomic: It is easier to move the mouse to a target at the edge of the screen than to one somewhere in the middle. At the edge of the screen, the boundary of the display acts as a visual, or actual, bumper to quick motions.

Also, primary information-regardless of ergonomics-should be located near the optical center, with secondary information at the edges: A reader’s eyes are most likely to follow a path from the center outward. Finally, for psychological continuity, orienting information should be placed at the top or the bottom of the screen, depending on whether it relates to the preceding or following screen, respectively.

Use of Color

Color standards are paramount to maintaining consistency throughout a web site. For page backgrounds, a neutral color, such as white, should be used because it provides the greatest contrast with most colors, which contributes to the property of readability, supports a variety of color text and icons, and bears greater similarity to traditional print pages, which are the basis for most graphic design and communications conventions. It is important to note that some pastel colors and combinations of colors are unreadable to those with color blindness and other visual disorders. Acceptable alternatives to a neutral background are the official university colors.

Using Graphics

There is a qualitative difference between the processing of information in the left brain (which generally considers text) and the right brain (which generally considers images). New material is processed and understood most effectively when it is given a number of different representations. Most authoring systems allow the user to create multimedia objects such as text, buttons, vector-drawn objects, and bitmaps. Graphics can be used to add mental dimensions to:

o Descriptions of real-world or imaginary settings.
o Descriptions of complex relationships.
o Numerical data.
o Requests for reader interaction.

Use of Sound and Video

Suffice to say, the fact that we live in a digitized world suggests that as students become more adept consumers of digital media, their expectations in the classroom increasingly involve digital media as an instructional delivery mode. Audio resolution (8, 16 or 32 bit) will determine the accuracy with which a sound can be digitized. However, it is proper to suggest that although streaming technologies offer a lot of promise for the delivery of audio and video through the Internet, audio and video should be used sparingly in web based training, due to issues of bandwidth and user access. An important side note is that when video is a major element of an interactive design, a high level of detail is necessary in the storyboard to ensure that the video producer has sufficient information to get an accurate video shot. However, if you incorporate streaming technologies, the users may need to download and install plug-ins. Because of the frustrations that plug-ins can cause, it is important to consider all alternatives prior to using them. Not only are there many versions of plug-ins, but they are constantly updated, and can be tricky to install and therefore it is better to use media elements only when they are essential to the instruction (Baron, 1998).

Using Links

When hyperlinks are used, they should serve as a way for the learner to access additional course material via the web. Some more specific examples of reasons for the creation of a link are as follows:

o provide additional information and examples so that learners can probe the topic in greater depth
o cross-reference items
o instruct learners to carry out a task (for example, a form of help)
o provide a help system
o provide a glossary
o provide footnotes
o provide contents lists
o provide illustrations to support text
o provide text to support an illustration
o connect the different aspects of a topic (similar to an index).

Developing the instruction

In order to prevent excessive cognitive load, instruction should progress from simple to complex, allowing learners to start out by working on tasks that represent relatively simple versions of the whole task. Learning tasks that are poorly designed or that involve the complex integration of multiple ideas, skills, or attributes, results in increased cognitive load and decreased learning (Mishra, 2004). An additional consideration in the development of IMI instruction relates to the use of what are referred to as authentic tasks. Learning activities should engage the learner in authentic tasks, which enable students to immerse themselves in the culture of the academic domain, much like an apprentice (Mishra, 2004).

Options for Evaluation of Courseware

Instructional designers have a several models from which to choose when looking at how to evaluate the overall effectiveness of a newly developed training product. At this point, I’ll mention two of these models; they are Kilpatrick’s 4 Levels of Evaluation and Dick and Carey Model. The Dick and Carey model of evaluation is based on three means of formative evaluation: one-to-one, small-group, and field evaluation. Kirkpatrick’s 4-level evaluation model, developed in 1976, is another model used by Instructional Designers in the domain of evaluation. The four levels of evaluation are: reactions, learning, transfer and results. Evaluation at level 1 – reactions, measures how participants react to training. It attempts to answer questions regarding the perceptions of the participants. Did they like it? Was the material relevant? Overall evaluation attempts to assess the learner satisfaction. In level 2 evaluation – learning, evaluation assesses the amount of learning that has occurred in a training program. Tests and pretests are used at this level in the evaluation process. Level 3 evaluation – transfer, measures the transfer that has occurred in learner’s behavior due to training. A question a designer may ask at this level is: are the newly acquired skills, knowledge, or attitude being used in the learner’s everyday environment? If yes, transfer has occurred. Level 4 evaluation – results, measures the success of the training from a managerial level in terms of increased production, improved quality, decreased costs, and return on investment (Lipka, n.d.)

The evaluation process for the instructional designer involves looking at the overall quality of the product and its appropriateness for meeting the client’s needs. With regard to this phase of the ADDIE process, the evaluation phase is driven by a search for the answers to the question: Have we solved the problem? In this regard the instructional designer may want to develop surveys which can be completed by persons who have completed the instruction. Additionally, interviews-essentially ethnographic research-can be conducted with course participants to determine levels of user satisfaction and overall effectiveness of the instruction. What is the impact? What needs to change? Finally, a piece of courseware might be utility tested and evaluated by a direct comparison of its performance against that of some reasonable alternative, such as an older training product or the traditional teaching it replaces.


Preparing for the design and development of interactive media is by no means as simple as described in this short paper. Rather, designing interactive media and other e-learning courseware is an iterative process, which typically involves a team effort when properly done. A myriad of skills and expertise should normally be brought into the process in order to ensure that an IMI product is one which achieves its educational or training aims. Design, development, layout, and testing of the courseware require forethought, creativity, and a clearly defined set of objectives. When properly done however, the end result is a training apparatus, properly designed for its target audience, and that enhances both individual and group performance on the job. Creating reusable learning products and implementing knowledge management strategies that work are the result of smart planning and quality management of courseware development and implementation within learning organizations.


Angelo, T.A., & Cross, K.P. (1993). Classroom assessment techniques (2nd ed.). San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Baron, A. (1998). Designing web-based training. British Journal of Technology, 29 (4), pp. 355- 370.

Hines, R. & Pearl, C. (2004). Increasing interaction in web-based instruction: Using synchronous chats and asynchronous discussions. Rural Special Education Quarterly, 23 (2), pp. 33-36.

Henke, M. & Latendresse, F. (2005). Store and forward: A collaborative approach for developing interactive digital media (IDM) for classroom instruction. Technology Teacher, 64 (8), pp. 6-8.

Kearsley, G. (2006). Explorations in learning and instruction: The theory into practice database.

Lipka, H. (n.d.). Helen P. Lipka electronic portfolio. Watson School of Education, University of North Carolina Wilmington.

Mishra, S. (2004). Interactive multimedia in education and training. Hershey, PA: Idea Group Publishing.

Vaughn, T. (2004). Multimedia: Making it work. McGraw Hill.

Liston W. Bailey is an educator and training specialist living in Virginia.

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What Are the Basic Steps in the Video Pre-Production Process?

Introduction to the Video Pre-Production Process

Video Production is an amazing and creative endeavor while a freelance storyboard artist plot the story using a storyboard. It can also be a lot of rewarding fun when you are working with the right group of people. This article briefly explains the 5 factors in the pre-production stage of the video production process so you can be prepared and know what to expect once you have committed to creating a video production.

Budget – This item often goes hand-in-hand with the script, after all you can’t write a $50,000 script if you only have $5,000 to spend on your production. For this reason, it is imperative to discuss your budget and expectations with an experienced video producer who can guide you as to which items are most important to relegate the funds to. The majority of video production expenses should be used in acquiring top talent that will perform at a high-level under pressure or time-constraints. This includes the scriptwriter, actors, director, camera operators, make-up artists and video editors. A good budget should take into account all possible expenses for the video production including travel, legal fees, administrative costs, licensing fees, and production & post-production costs. You may have heard the phrases “above-the-line” & “below-the-line” this refers to a distinction between the most influential and creative roles of a film, and the rest of the crew. Generally Actors, Directors, Producers, and Screenwriters are above the line.

Script – Once the budget has been decided upon, the scriptwriter can begin his work. The ball starts rolling with a conference call between the video producer and writer where the producer explains the vision of the client to the writer. Sometimes the writer may need more information and he will send a questionnaire asking for details about the target market, intended distribution, and product specifications. A good writer will spend time analyzing the client’s product including their website and their competitor’s websites and ads.

Scriptwriters use a particular program to write their scripts such as Final Draft or Adobe Story. At this stage the client and video producer have the opportunity to review the script and make corrections or suggestions to improve the script. It’s important to be critical at this stage and open to new ideas. There can be several rounds to these revisions before the client approves the script, but it’s important to get the script as perfect as possible before moving on to the next step – Storyboarding.

Storyboard – Now that the script has been approved or at least at an advanced stage of development, it can be visualized through the storyboarding process. Traditionally a storyboard is hand drawn by a storyboard artist into panels representing parts of the script. Not every angle has to be included but just the main ones to give an idea of the action, location, background, and actors involved.

There also other ways to storyboard. For example one can simply do a Google search of images/stock photos and use a program like Photoshop to create the storyboard. Programs like GoAnimate can also be used to make an animated storyboard complete with movement, backgrounds, and computerized voices. Another animated storyboard option is the free program Plotagon. This software allows you to choose different angles and characters while you write the script. This is a great way to visualize your script before the actual shoot.

Casting – Concurrently with the scriptwriting and storyboarding, you can begin looking for the talent that is going to be involved in your production. The best route to go is to hire a Casting Director or Talent Agency. They have an extensive database of pre-screened actors or voice-over artists for the client or video producer to peruse. They should be able to provide headshots, resumes, and demo reels of the artists demonstrating their skills and versatility. It is wise to choose 2 or 3 people for each role and have them come to a Casting Call. Choose a professional location for the casting call so that everyone feels comfortable. Ideally there should be a waiting area for the actors and a changing room. Be sure to have a video camera (or at least an iPhone) set up on a tripod to record each of the auditions. Once the auditions are done, the client and the video producers should come to mutual decision about who to cast.

Location Scouting – You may wish to hire a Location Manager or Location Scout who will take the script and scour the city (or world) to find the appropriate locations. Factors to consider are lighting, sound, background and accessibility. You can expect a report from the location scout that includes pictures, videos, financial costs, availability of parking, distance to base of operations, lighting and weather conditions. Based on this report, the client and video producer can decide which locations are the most appropriate to book for the production. Once the final decisions have been made the process of “Clearing the Location” can begin. This means that someone has to negotiate the fees for renting the location, get the appropriate clearances, notify residents in the area of the upcoming, and any other requirements necessary to procuring the locations.

Now that you know a little more about the pre-production process, you can be more prepared when meeting a video producer to discuss your project. Remember, this is the most critical step to creating a successful and memorable video production. Regardless of the type of video you are making, taking care to create a viable and professional script as well as hiring exceptional on-screen and off-screen talent. These are the keys to creating a successful video production.

About the Author

Horacio Jones has been a Video Producer, Director, Camera Operator and Editor for over 10 years. He has directed several documentaries, short films and numerous corporate and event videos. Currently he is the owner of where he oversees the day-to-day video production and editing tasks necessary to maintain a successful video production company. He also teaches Filming and Editing techniques to students attending the Film Connection Film Institute.


I strive to offer creative video production and editing services in a timely and efficient manner. That’s why I think it is better to spend more time in pre-production in order to ensure that the plan is solid and considerations like the budget and talent, and personnel are more than adequate to pull off the production without a hitch. Ultimately, it’s more economical to do things right the first time. I’m equally comfortable being the leader or being part of a team, I check my ego at the door when I have to perform. Additionally, I maintain a comfortable, yet professional rapport with the client, crew, and cast of each production in order to promote an atmosphere of excitement, fun, and creativity.

– Horacio Jones, Director

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Pilates Breath – The Goal That Keeps on Giving

Pilates is huge. Not in the cultural sense. Pilates was somehow everywhere before most people had even heard of it. Nor do I mean financially, that phase seems to have peaked. No, the hugeness I refer to is that of the system itself. A lot of folks might not realize how big the total body of the work is. Or, that the different routines inter-relate to support each other. Six different machines plus the mat, three to five Levels and Lengths of routine each, the volume of choreography and information is equal to a Black Belt in a respectable Martial Art. Good nutrition is probably the single most important factor in determining health that why we need help with nutritionist Northern Beaches.

Consider also, that the work evolved over decades to support consistent ideals. Meaning to say, if you are struggling with an intermediate or advanced mat exercise, there will very likely be a reformer or Cadillac exercise designed specifically to help you. The system is so wide that there are multiple directions one could take one’s study of Pilates. And, it can be confusing. Navigating the hugeness means having a goal, a relevant goal, maybe a series of relevant goals. Knowing where you want to go is as important as starting at the beginning.

Pilates, like any worthwhile pursuit, has layered goals. What one strives to “master” today may be no more than a prerequisite for next week’s study. Some goals we transition past and never look back. When was the last time you practiced your times tables? Other types of goal are never met, simple at first but progressively more difficult to maintain. “Keep your hands up.” is hardly news in the first seconds of a boxing match, but it turns into Rocket Science as the rounds progress. Without that basic skill firmly in place… other skills will lose their relevance. The Boxer becomes vulnerable.

Pilates has a similar vulnerability. The more advanced moves are as tempting as they are complicated. We tend to want to notch our belts as we did on the earlier moves. But those moves were simpler, and the incorporation of good breath goals are stressed quite clearly. The very structure of many basic Pilates movements helps to show the need for breath as a tool, and not merely a metronome. “Spine Stretch” and “Roll up” are both good examples of this for different reasons.

“Spine stretch” is obscure and a simple “inhale when you do this/exhale when you do that” will not help you find the always subtle, and initially distant, sensation of the Nuchal Ligament. However, if you demand that both inhale and exhale display classical hallmarks of intentional breathing as, or before, the outward movement begins, then you will at least have a direction for your efforts even if they aren’t immediately rewarded with a clear feeling. The exercise itself helps us focus on the mechanics of breath.

Look at “Roll up”. For most of us, this exercise is just hard enough that we can only do it if our breath really helps. Saying your exhale at just the right time, like a line on cue, is not going to get your torso up off the deck. An actual redistribution of body weight is needed for most of us, and until we stop “trying harder” and let the breath lead, we are doomed to flop and arch like a fish (Well I did, and I’m pretty strong.). A Perfect Basic Exercise because success, and ohh, let’s call it “pre-success” are self evident. If the Client/Practitioner is striving or tensing in a possible injurious way, then that will also quickly reveal itself. Again, Seemly the definition of a Basic Exercise.

The Vulnerability I spoke of lies in the more advanced moves. As the complexity and difficulty increase, the self corrective aspects decrease. Its the standard ” ’nuff-rope-to-hang-yourself problem “. Please examine “Arabesques” in the Advanced Reformer. There is potential for repetitive stress damage to the hip, lumbar, and shoulder. These damages could take months to show themselves, and you would have been enjoying your workout the whole time. Problems of this nature ought to be solved by Breath. Using the inhale or exhale to align the skeleton before movement lends protection from as well as sensitivity to distortion. The original sensations of proper skeletal alignment are stored within a focused, almost ritual Breath.

Retaining these sensations is the best way to protect yourself as you progress, and the breath is always there to provide guidance. Without that guidance, you cannot know if you are safe or even correct. It is a layered goal. Don’t leave home without it.

Now, all of this presupposes that somewhere along the line you were taught an ideal breath to create alignment and activate your core. That you practiced enough for it to morph from choreography to sensation. That you own it at a deeper than verbal level. This is super important because your verbal learning parts are always busy at Pilates Class.

The necessary relationship between core and alignment need not be re-proven. It is how these two triangulate with the breath that needs to be more closely observed. The core is forever linked to breath by a simple fact. A person’s “Core” is like Big-foot, it cannot be photographed. It doesn’t exist in stillness, there are no muscles you could lock into place to display it. Your “Core” is more of an event than a collection of anatomy. It only manifests during motion like climbing or running or jumping or, best of all, breathing. The essential support for the essential movement. The “flow” (a Pilates buzz word) or counter-tension in the low frontal torso is a response to breath.

The primary muscle of inspiration is, of course, the diaphragm. Neither the core (a list of muscles and tendons) nor the “Core” (a holistic event) respond to the Diaphragm. The Diaphragm exerts no upward force and does not expand or contract the Ribcage. Those functions are served by the secondary muscles of inspiration and these are the muscles that trigger core response. Furthermore, the greater the total percentage of secondary inspiration muscles activated, the greater the total percentage of core muscles activated.

Whole careers (mine included) are based on describing this phenomenon. My favorite visual metaphor is of a mushroom cloud, an omnidirectional expanding plume driven ever higher by an arcane column of force, oh yeah, that’s the stuff. In reality, its kind of the opposite. Your Ribcage is cleverly anchored to your Spine, Shoulders, and Head and the secondary muscles of inspiration pull it multi-directionally away from the Diaphragm’s tug. This enhances the basic function of the Diaphragm and creates more expansion in the Ribcage. It also serves to counter the downward pull so you don’t slump. Because expansion and contraction of the Ribcage are necessarily linked to the Ribcage traveling up and down the Spine, even a rudimentary study of improving Ribcage volume (not total breath volume) will enhance Spinal alignment. Simply put, you could stifle this monorail-esque traveling up and down the Spine of your Ribcage, but then you could never reach or improve your Ribcage Volume potential. The up/down is structurally built into the expand/contract of the Ribcage. The longer and straighter your Spine, the further up your ribs can go, the further up, the more they can expand. So, it follows that breath and alignment are permanently linked, but it goes deeper than that. A well studied breath can create significant therapeutic effects in and of itself. Consider that the maximally expanded Ribcage shows the least imprint of tension, stress pattern, or injury. An exhale begun from this point has the best chance of ending in an optimal contraction. A well studied exhale can reset the scapula and neck, lessening the unwanted imprint. Even the Diaphragm itself, as it resets during the exhale, gives direction to the Spine if not actual support.

A complete list of the secondary muscles of inspiration would invite tepid debate and violate the spirit I’m trying to create. Namely, that you should/ought/must spend some shirtless time in front of a mirror isolating, recognizing, and recreating the effect until some measure of clarity and confidence develop. Ya’ know, practice.

My description shall be inexact and imperfect, try to have fun with it. Get all skins to the waist in front of a good, well lit mirror. Since we are studying the inhale first, we’ll need to finish a pretty good exhale as a jumping point. For our purposes, a good exhale is one that vents air without losing any height. Not as easy as it sounds. The mirror reveals that our exhale tends to slightly lessen bearing, bust, and stature. Just keeping your full height as the air flows completely out is a good challenge. All tall and empty, your inhales should begin as I describe. If it doesn’t, one possible reason might be that having pursued your exhale into unknown territory, your inhale is coming with awkward suddenness. A bit of practice will help find the difference between a complete exhale and an intense one. At the beginning, your pre-contracted ribs will seek to expand due to stored potential energy. Allowing them to do so helps start the process which we hope to enhance. The low belly will draw inward and upward, keeping pace with the rising Ribcage. This effect will persist for less than half the total inhale, and may be staccato or intermittent. More practice will smooth this out until each studied inhale has a gut-in and a gut-out phase, with the first phase ending as the ribs stop expanding. The directionality of the guts during the gut-in phase is “Core”. Elongating this core active, gut-in phase is the main benefit of Pilates, and also the key to progressing in it as well. It may feel goofy at first but, you can increase your personal quotient of Ribcage expansion.

The mirror is vital at the outset when the sensations of progress are unfamiliar. Seeing breath happen real-time aids in rooting out unnecessary tension patterns (Hulk Smash!) normally present during exertion. Various muscle groups may need to relax against habit so you can see/feel the Ribcage expand or the “Core” manifest. In other words, an extra big Ribcage does not require shoulders like football pads. Use that mirror!

You’ve already absorbed the key aspect of a good exhale, so I’ll just elaborate a bit. The further your exhale progresses without a loss of height, the more correctly you have contracted your Ribcage. Begun well, the pattern is easy to follow. The mirror should report greater release of Trapezius and most other neck area muscles. What the mirror might not reveal is the upward resetting of the Diaphragm, although its productive effects may be visible elsewhere in the Spine.

Good inhales beget good exhales, but it will take focus time to modulate the intensity and chain these events into a series we Scholars call breathing. Until this goal is achieved, its wise to avoid the complicated or dangerous exercises because the whole point of the advanced work is to retain the benefits of proper breathing through the more distracting or difficult challenges.

Breath is the goal that keeps on giving, and the reason why I never accept money from anyone for their first Pilates session. I want to change their view of Life, the Thoracic Universe, and Exercise. I don’t want to talk about skinniness or sturdiness or serenity or even layered goals, I just want to talk about breath.

Eric Schimel, co-author of Pilatez Comix The Basic Mat, is a Kung Fu Black Belt and Pilates Instructor currently based out of Austin Texas. A gifted poet/playwrite, he completed his Pilates Training with Wendy LeBlanc Arbuckle, founder of the Pilates Center of Austin, in 2000 and has since taught both throughout the USA, and internationally at Espace Pilates, a prestigious studio in Boulogne, France as well as in the Philippines. Sought after by both beginners and professional pilates instructors alike for more extensive study, Eric has a unique approach to pilates philosophy he coins Pilatez. Pilatez Comix The Basic Mat is available in both Hard Copy and Digital Download editions. Want to find more articles, blogs, and podcasts please click here. [].

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Storyboard Artist – Career Profile

What does a Storyboard Artist do? Where does a Storyboard Artist Work? ACR takes a look:
About Storyboard Artists

Storyboard artists draw storyboards for animated features, films, television commercials and other ad campaigns, music videos, and video games. The storyboard artist begins creating the storyboard after a concept or script has been written. The storyboard presents the “action” in a series of scenes (panel by panel), which allows filmmakers, advertisers, and producers to evaluate the project before beginning production. Storyboards are also used to provide direction during production.

Storyboard Artist Jobs

Storyboard artists draw scenes by hand or computer. They might sketch in black and white or they may produce full color storyboards manually or by computer. Also called “storyboarders,” storyboard artists work with producers, directors, and film crew from start to finish by sketching scenes during initial meetings, and editing or eliminating scenes as the project progresses. Storyboard artists may work in a film or other production studio, in an office setting, or even a home studio.

Storyboard Artist Salaries

Storyboard artist salaries vary greatly based on experience, benefits, the size and type of company, industry, geographic location, and other factors. For example, according to Indeed, storyboard artists in Burbank, California—the “Media Capital of the World,” average $86,000 per year. Head east to New York—considered the “Capital of the Modern World,” and storyboard artists average $105,000 per year, according to Indeed.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics does not report salary and employment information for storyboard artists as a single group, so another way to get an idea of what storyboard artists earn is to review earnings for illustrators. According to the Bureau, the average salary for illustrators is $44,850 per year. The highest earning illustrators average $91,200 per year and the lowest earners average $18,450 per year. Some story board artists are self-employed, so they may earn quite a bit more or less than the average salaries listed.

Becoming a Storyboard Artist

While formal education is not required for all storyboard artist jobs, many employer’s prefer to hire artists with a bachelor’s or master’s degree in art, fine arts, illustration, digital art or other related area. Experience is preferred as well. Aspiring storyboard artists may obtain valuable experience through an internship or entry-level position. Some storyboard artists with exceptional talent, but little formal training may qualify for some entry-level positons.

Job Trends for Storyboard Artists

Employment of fine artists such as illustrators is projected to grow four percent for the 2012-2022 decade. This means, the talent pool will increase from 28,800 in 2012 to 29,900 by 2022. Projected growth for this occupation is slower than the average for all occupations. However, according to the Bureau, “demand for illustrators who work on a computer will increase, as media companies use more detailed images and backgrounds in their designs.” Further, “new opportunities are expected to arise, as the number of electronic magazines, Internet-based publications, and video games grows.”

Awesome Animation Fact: When it comes to creating likable characters, sometimes it’s best to go back to the drawing board until you get it right. According to Yahoo!7, one of the world’s most loved animated characters, Woody from Toy Story, was originally written to be a type of ‘sarcastic jerk’ who frequently insulted other toys throughout the film. Fortunately, Disney deemed this character totally unwatchable and halted film production until a more appealing personality for Woody was developed. Find out the best team for your storyboard project.