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Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

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Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

Old 09-18-20, 06:40 PM
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Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

I am looking for some creative ideas ... in my classroom is an old 19' Magnavox CRT TV which is mounted near the ceiling. I am wanting to decorate it, re-purpose it, or otherwise make it into something cool. Or maybe just something that makes people wonder ...

Right now I just have a smiley face drawn on it in dry-erase markers. I thought about getting some fish static clings to make it look like an aquarium, but the screen would not be blue (unless I covered it). I also thought about trying to put a better face on it and then adding a hat, some legs, etc.

What you need to know:
  • It will turn on. It has the "old" static/snow screen, not the "modern" blue (or that would work for the aquarium idea).
  • It will NOT come down off the mount. Well, it probably would, but neither I nor the maintenance staff are doing that.
  • We CANNOT take it apart (e.g., remove the innards and build something inside of it).
  • I will award bonus points for ideas that take advantage of the screen still lighting up. More if you incorporate the static.
  • My room is a social studies class.
Your prize is knowing that your idea is entertaining to 12, 13, and 14-year old kids in an inner city school. Well, it will be entertaining some day when we return to school in person. Perhaps you will inspire the inner artist in some of them.
Old 09-18-20, 06:46 PM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

a cutout of Max Headroom?

maybe a cutout of Washington crossing the Delaware and the static is snow?

or a cut out of a couple of AT-AT's from Hoth in the Empire Strikes back?

can you hook it up to something? display an eyeball that just moves around the room?
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Old 09-18-20, 07:36 PM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

Max Headroom is the first thing I thought of, too.

Though since it's in a classroom none of the kids will likely get the reference.

Old 09-18-20, 08:08 PM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

What do you mean you can't remove it from the mount? Someone put it up there when it was installed and 19" CRTV's are not that heavy.

Last edited by Bluelitespecial; 09-18-20 at 11:12 PM.
Old 09-18-20, 08:49 PM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

To remove it from the mount would require six forms, filled out in triplicate, submitted at least 60 days in advance. Those would need to be signed off on by the vice-chair or a quorum of the Committee for Property Acquisitions, Retainment, Disposal, and Yearly Guidance (also referred to as C-PARDY Guy) before being forwarded to the Dean of Educational Temporary Development Research Technology and Peanut Butter Sandwiches (commonly known as EaT DiRT and PB Sandwiches). The Dean would then have a 120 day review period wherein I could be asked to provide supporting documentation. I do not have the owner's manual for this thing. She asked. I already am in trouble because I don't have the batteries for the remote control. They didn't care that I didn't have the remote itself, but not having the barcode to scan from the original batteries was an issue.

Once that 120 day review period is up, the Dean must present the proposal to the Acting Superintendent of Learning Outcomes and Workforce. The Acting SLOW has another 30 to 180 days (depending on which district guide you check) to offer his recommendation. However, the Acting SLOW's contract expires in 30 days, so things are not moving quickly. He is holding up everything in his channel to show the district how much work there is and that he needs to be named permanently SLOW.

If, by some miracle, I can convince the Acting SLOW's 70 year old administrative assistant (who does have a crush on me ... and any other breathing male) to speed up the paperwork -- and by "IF" I do mean there may be some sex involved -- I might be able to get this converted into a maintenance work request by February.

Once the work request is in, the magic really starts. Maintenance will review the work request and determine if it should become a work order. They can create a paper work order that has to be hand delivered to the Regional Underboss - Field Department (RU FD, yet?). The RU FD then will copy it (by hand) three more times. He keeps one copy, sends one copy back to the Acting SLOW, and one to the Interim Night Operations Customer Assistance Rep (I NO CARe). The I NO CARe works downtown. He converts the handwritten work request into a work order for the maintenance staff in my building. 73% of those work orders disappear. I've heard they use a complicated delivery system involving pulleys, carrier pigeons, the USPS, and quite possible elves. I had also heard they could be halflings, but that has become an offensive term (possibly explaining the 73% disappearance rate).

Once it reaches my building maintenance staff, they must find a mechanical device from 1982 that can read the embedded identifying information on this TV. Their modern scanner won't read it. They can't decode it. Google searches have turned up a device in Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch, Wales. They may be able to get one faster from Norway. That identifying information is needed so they can input it into the computer and discover it is too old to be in the system. They will need to track down the paper files, and all those boxes were moved about 12 years ago to a building that may or may not have burned down (they lost the building, too ... no, really, they cannot find the building).

If they find the paperwork, they are going to discover that the full value of the TV had actually been billed to seven different teachers on seven different occasions. Those teachers each had the full, brand new purchase price of the TV withheld from their final paychecks. Upon discovering this, the maintenance staff will determine the TV has no value, and cannot actually exist in the system. I will then be informed there is NO TV in my room, even as the custodian looks directly at it. "I know there is a TV there, Mr. Teff. But the system shows there is no TV in here, so I can't remove it if it isn't here."

So ... just help me decorate the damn thing, will you?

Old 09-18-20, 08:53 PM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

The students will certainly have NO idea who Max Headroom is. Which could make it fun. But not terribly creative.
Old 09-18-20, 09:03 PM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

Does it work? Do you have a VCR or some other way to do playback? (Edit) Actually, you could probably get an Apple TV if you have the inputs. Then you can play anything with AirPlay.

Set it up to turn on random and start playing during class. Maybe something to flip when you need to wake them up or get their attention. Make an ongoing joke of it. My mind immediately goes to "The Ring" footage or the 1984 face. I'd have no idea what to do for kids today to amuse them. I'm so old.
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Old 09-18-20, 09:14 PM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

Make it a pizza oven.

I misunderstood the assignment.
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Old 09-18-20, 09:17 PM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

Originally Posted by Abob Teff View Post
To remove it from the mount would require six forms, filled out in triplicate, submitted at least 60 days in advance. Those would need to be signed off on by the vice-chair or a quorum of the Committee for Property Acquisitions, Retainment, Disposal, and Yearly Guidance (also referred to as C-PARDY Guy) before being forwarded to the Dean of Educational Temporary Development Research Technology and Peanut Butter Sandwiches (commonly known as EaT DiRT and PB Sandwiches). The Dean would then have a 120 day review period wherein I could be asked to provide supporting documentation. I do not have the owner's manual for this thing. She asked. I already am in trouble because I don't have the batteries for the remote control. They didn't care that I didn't have the remote itself, but not having the barcode to scan from the original batteries was an issue.

Once that 120 day review period is up, the Dean must present the proposal to the Acting Superintendent of Learning Outcomes and Workforce. The Acting SLOW has another 30 to 180 days (depending on which district guide you check) to offer his recommendation. However, the Acting SLOW's contract expires in 30 days, so things are not moving quickly. He is holding up everything in his channel to show the district how much work there is and that he needs to be named permanently SLOW.

If, by some miracle, I can convince the Acting SLOW's 70 year old administrative assistant (who does have a crush on me ... and any other breathing male) to speed up the paperwork -- and by "IF" I do mean there may be some sex involved -- I might be able to get this converted into a maintenance work request by February.

Once the work request is in, the magic really starts. Maintenance will review the work request and determine if it should become a work order. They can create a paper work order that has to be hand delivered to the Regional Underboss - Field Department (RU FD, yet?). The RU FD then will copy it (by hand) three more times. He keeps one copy, sends one copy back to the Acting SLOW, and one to the Interim Night Operations Customer Assistance Rep (I NO CARe). The I NO CARe works downtown. He converts the handwritten work request into a work order for the maintenance staff in my building. 73% of those work orders disappear. I've heard they use a complicated delivery system involving pulleys, carrier pigeons, the USPS, and quite possible elves. I had also heard they could be halflings, but that has become an offensive term (possibly explaining the 73% disappearance rate).

Once it reaches my building maintenance staff, they must find a mechanical device from 1982 that can read the embedded identifying information on this TV. Their modern scanner won't read it. They can't decode it. Google searches have turned up a device in Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch, Wales. They may be able to get one faster from Norway. That identifying information is needed so they can input it into the computer and discover it is too old to be in the system. They will need to track down the paper files, and all those boxes were moved about 12 years ago to a building that may or may not have burned down (they lost the building, too ... no, really, they cannot find the building).

If they find the paperwork, they are going to discover that the full value of the TV had actually been billed to seven different teachers on seven different occasions. Those teachers each had the full, brand new purchase price of the TV withheld from their final paychecks. Upon discovering this, the maintenance staff will determine the TV has no value, and cannot actually exist in the system. I will then be informed there is NO TV in my room, even as the custodian looks directly at it. "I know there is a TV there, Mr. Teff. But the system shows there is no TV in here, so I can't remove it if it isn't here."

So ... just help me decorate the damn thing, will you?
Cripes, man. You're pulling our chains. Just remove the damn mount. Nobody in admin will notice or care.

My best idea: Since it is a social studies class, you can turn on the set, and give the kids a lesson in what "white noise" is. Have them record it, do an FFT on its random frequency response, and then teach them about the beginnings of TV in the '30s and what it means to "tune in" a frequency and lock in a picture, how millions of tinkerers did this back in the day when they brought their first sets home. Further, you can incorporate the "rags to riches" stories of people like Sarnoff who founded RCA, the war stores of Ed Murrow, and any myriad others who made use of "all that static.".

That's all I've got. Probably bullshit, and too cerebral for inner-city 13-year-olds who probably only care if their smartphones "work", and don't give two shits about the granddaddy of "modern" tech, the radio and the analogue TVs.
Old 09-18-20, 09:17 PM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

It might take spending a little bit of money but what about Colorforms? (showing my age here) Yes, apparently they still make them! You could make a funny picture or scene every day. They even have popular/modern properties like Toy Story, Spongebob and Ninja Turtles. I assume they'd stick to the screen.

You could buy a few different sets and mix things up every day. Ninja Turtles fighting Spongebob, Batman vs. Minions or Starlord and Groot taking on Care Bears.

https://www.walmart.com/browse/color...b3Jmb3Jtcwieie


You could even reward students(for whatever task or test) by letting them create a scene on their desk, you snap a pic and put it up on the tv for the next day for all the students to see.
Old 09-18-20, 09:25 PM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

Make it a Christmas decoration (yes, now). The static TV can be a tree topper if you can find the right size tree to put under it.
Old 09-18-20, 09:43 PM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV


Old 09-19-20, 08:07 AM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

Connect a chromebox to it. Use that for custom slide shows (via google docs) and/or play videos from the internet. You'd need an HDMI to composite adapter for the connection. We use chromeboxes in many locations for announcements and other basic needs. If available, Google Device Management can make it easier (any changes to the configured slide show automatically show up on the device) and makes it a less attractive target for theft (with the right settings in place the device is pretty worthless to anyone else, even if it's powerwashed).
Old 09-19-20, 08:58 AM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

Have a random student use the dry erase marker to decorate the screen each week.
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Old 09-19-20, 09:04 AM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

make a robot "body" underneath with the TV as the head.
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Old 09-19-20, 09:09 AM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

Jambi or Magic Screen from Pee Wee’s playhouse.
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Old 09-19-20, 09:13 AM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

I doubt this would play well in a school, but those old CRT TV are the only TVs good to play all those old light gun games like Duck Hunt and Hogan's Alley. Some used video game stores have quality used CRTs that go for a hefty penny for nostalgic gamers.

I do like the idea of hooking a VCR to it and playing very, very tame 80s tapes. Again, tame because it's a school.school.

And I also like that idea of letting one student per week draw on it. Take a photo every week and post or collect them or print out a montage and pin it to the wall each week, like a class art project.
Old 09-19-20, 11:27 AM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

I really like the idea of changing it out regularly ... but that would require a ladder.

Do I need to tell you what it takes to get a ladder? Let me start the paperwork allowing me to divulge that story ...
Old 09-19-20, 11:29 AM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

Or a marker on a stick. That could also make it fun. Can you do art from eight feet down?
Old 09-19-20, 11:32 AM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

Originally Posted by story View Post
I doubt this would play well in a school, but those old CRT TV are the only TVs good to play all those old light gun games like Duck Hunt and Hogan's Alley. Some used video game stores have quality used CRTs that go for a hefty penny for nostalgic gamers.

I do like the idea of hooking a VCR to it and playing very, very tame 80s tapes. Again, tame because it's a school.school.

And I also like that idea of letting one student per week draw on it. Take a photo every week and post or collect them or print out a montage and pin it to the wall each week, like a class art project.
... yeah ... thinking a game with a gun is not a good idea ...

Old 09-19-20, 11:34 AM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

Originally Posted by story View Post
Or a marker on a stick. That could also make it fun. Can you do art from eight feet down?

Old 09-19-20, 12:04 PM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

What if you had a print out of the school mascot on the wall, then two yardstick-type items, one with a marker, one with a wiping towel. Each week, one student has the chance to do their best to draw their rendition of the school mascot with the marker on a stick. Then, take a photo of it, print it out, and put them all side by side as a mural. Before you put it up, have the student hold it up, take a photo of them with their artwork, so they can "show off," including for their second attempt down the road. Do all of the photos within your school's policies, of course. Could be really fun. If there were photos chronicling all of this, and students like it, I'd say this can be not only a fun way to get through the year, it can be a fun "lighter note" local news story, even something you do annually for students in your room. See how your efforts compare to your older siblings three years ago.

Good luck, whatever you decide.
Old 09-19-20, 12:56 PM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

Connect a camera to it and show everybody how creepy surveillance is.

Yeah I got nothing.
Old 09-19-20, 02:12 PM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

Originally Posted by TGM View Post
a cutout of Max Headroom?

maybe a cutout of Washington crossing the Delaware and the static is snow?

or a cut out of a couple of AT-AT's from Hoth in the Empire Strikes back?

can you hook it up to something? display an eyeball that just moves around the room?
God damn max Hedroom is the first comment?!?! And I thought I was original.

Old 09-19-20, 02:18 PM
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Re: Creative ideas needed: re-purposing a 19" TV

Tell the kids it’s full of candy and that it’s an ‘80s piata.

Or, get the holiday Yull Log fireplace videos.
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