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06 May 08

Google for Educators launches Geo Education today! Cool. It includes information on Google EArth, Maps, Sky, and Sketcup and lesson plans from teachers. It also includes tips on getting started with these tools in your classroom.

As you plan your summer PD, Geography teachers simply must get this on their list for fall!

24 Apr 08

Business people and management should read this article about the transformation of business by using workplace communities.

"Workplace communities are designed to solve workplace-related challenges" -- they focus on tasks. I would find it interesting to see a business REALLY use technology to change things.

Having the business in a business network (OK a NING) and let people tag their posts with the business related PROBLEMS they are having and blog, video, or photograph it-- the tag cloud would tell the business IMMEDIATELY what the problems are in the company.

The problem with this model is that there are few corporate executives who REALLY want to know the problems within their organizations. They don't want to be problem solvers, just opportunity creators.

However, when managers open their eyes (and I'm a former General Manager myself) and see that two things give business opportunity: problem solving and innovation. And they are directly related. True innovation solves problems.

Read this article and think about how you may solve problems using the networks you may now create. If you don't want everyone to know, keep it private and only allow people in your company in.

  • What has not changed significantly, however, is the nature of human interactions in business – email, conference calls, and presentations by experts to non-experts are still the dominant means of interaction
  • the Internet has morphed from a presentation medium to an interactive platform in just a few years
  • a leading web analysis site

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24 Apr 08

Microsoft Popfly lets you make mashups and build web pages without knowing code. I am to the point I don't teach the detailed web site creation coding I used to. I teach RSS, embedding, creating wikis, uploading media of all kinds, but I just don't know how important coding is any more at the basic level.

I want to spend some time tinkering with this.

24 Apr 08

Excellent overview from Jeremiah about the use of twiter to backchannel at a conference. Backchanneling is something I think that is very important, but there is very definitely a best practice.

Here were my comments to Jeremiah:

"I am a classroom teacher and LOVE the backchannel (they are great for test reviews -- like group notes and more) and won't do a conference presentation without one, that being said, I wouldn't use twitter for it.

Like you said, many people don't use twitter or get it.

I like to create a "backchannel room" so that it is archived and recruit ahead of time at least two people:

1) A backchannel "moderator" - they answer questions and I call on them several times to ask for their summary of what is going on in the backchannel (this is when I'm the main presenter)

2) A google jockey -- they drop the links I'm talking about in the backchannel chat.

I also like to ask the people in the backchannel to share best practice and what they are doing. I've had people comment that the one hour with a backchannel and me presenting was more meaningful than a whole day at a conference. (More compliments to the backchannel, I'm sure.)

I've seen backchannels handled very poorly and it was TERRIBLE. It was chaos. And actually downright rude to the speaker. (More like backstabbing than backchanneling.)

I've also seen it used well and it was incredible!

The archiving of the backchannel gave me rich links as a presenter and participant AND also feedback on the session which I referred to later as the presenter.

The backchannel is great -- I just like to use a backchannel ROOM especially for the session (inviting "friends" from around the world who are also watching on ustream) -- and then creating an archived copy of it.

I think backchannels are very important and you've hit on the core of what is happening in the evolution of professional development and conferences. "

  • I was watching twitter in real-time to gauge the audience reaction (a best practice I prescribe in how to moderate a panel) and saw two tweets, in particular this one:

     

    “I agree with @nickionita…community building panel is a snooze”

  • so I acknowledged them in twitter, and let everyone know we would quickly shift to questions, so the audience could drive the agenda. We received over a dozen questions, and I hope the audience was satisfied, lots of good hard questions from many folks on the ground that are trying to solve these problems: getting management to agree, measuring roi, dealing with detractors, etc.

     

    After which, I think we won him over:

     

    Questions made the panel: Love hearing viewpoints from people with boots on the ground

  • Now, the next panel (Greg Narain, Brian Solis, Stowe Boyd) wasn’t traditional by any sense, it was an experiment, where we crowd-sourced the agenda to the audience –they used Twitter. Greg Narain setup an application where members from the audience could message (@micromedia2) and their tweets (comments, questions, requests, answers, and sometimes jokes made at Scoble’s expense) were seen live on the screen.

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22 Apr 08

Intel Mashmaker is a tool that you download and "mashup" sites together. It is supposed to allow average everyday people to be able to mashup google sites, flickr, almost anything with what programmers call an api.

17 Apr 08

This site claims to be the largest student arts gallery on the web! Looks fascinating. Not sure how they use first names and locations and get away with it. I'd like to know what those who have used it think about it.

16 Apr 08

An excellent project for 4th - 6th grade sudents from Jennifer Wagner called the Prince Caspian project which will allow teachers to collaborate with other teachers around the world about the book and the upcoming movie "Prince caspian."

  • This project is open to all FOURTH to SIXTH GRADE STUDENTS Worldwide between the months of April to June, 2008
  • The main purpose of this project is provide a way for teachers to collaborate with other teachers all over the world about the book (and soon to be released) "PRINCE CASPIAN".
16 Apr 08

A great way to get started with technology is to join in an exciting project. this project by Susan Silverman was designed using the principles of Universal Design for Learning. I've heard her present and she is a pro. (Along with my friend Jennifer Wagner.)

  • A Collaborative   Internet Project for K-5 Students
  • Essential Question:   Why are ladybugs considered to be good luck?
  • This   project will demonstrate lesson plans designed following   principles of Universal Design for Learning (UDL) and   examples of student work resulting from the lessons.  As   teachers we should ask ourselves if there are any   barriers to our students’ learning.  We should look for   ways to present information and assess learning in   non-text-based formats. 

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16 Apr 08

Online program that has second life presence and many other things for promoting global awareness.

  • Global Kids - Creating Leaders Through Experience
16 Apr 08

Confiscating and looking at information on cell phones by school officials is still not clear. This is a very interesting case study for those working with digital citizenship issues at their school.

  • May school officials lawfully “search” the confiscated cell phone to look at stored text messages, photographs, videos, and logs of incoming and outgoing calls? Clearly, the circumstances of the search must satisfy the T.L.O. standard. Not as clear, however, is whether such a search violates federal or Michigan laws regarding stored electronic communications.
  • [A] search of a student by a teacher or other school officials will be ‘justified at its inception’ when there are reasonable grounds for suspecting that the search will turn up evidence that the student has violated or is violating either the law or the rules of the school. Such a search will be permissible in its scope when the measures adopted are reasonably related to the objectives of the search and not excessively intrusive in light of the age and sex of the student and the nature of the infraction.”
  • In Klump v Nazareth Area Sch Dist, 425 F Supp 2d 622 (ED Pa, 2006), a federal district court denied the school’s motion to dismiss a lawsuit filed by a student whose cell phone was searched.

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16 Apr 08

Response of many flickr users to the addition of video to flickr. This is going to be a very interesting thing to watch. Should a company focus, or should it be everything to everyone? I think that somehow flickr may miss the point... there are subgroups of people who want to use technologies in a focused way without everyone else. IN some ways, self selection makes the product more usable to a niche. Now, photobugs may have to go somewhere else or tolerate the "moving pictures" that they so hate.

16 Apr 08

You may want to take a look at this research study for the horizon project research. This study looked at authority in social classification systems by studying delicious.

  • einberg, Melanie (2006) An Examination of Authority in Social Classification Systems. In Furner, Jonathan and Tennis, Joseph T., Eds. Proceedings 17th Workshop of the American Society for Information Science and Technology Special Interest Group in Classification Research 17, Austin, Texas.
  • Merging of personal collections into a group-indexed aggregate collection.   The bookmarks manager del.icio.us is the primary example of a social classification system used throughout this paper.
15 Apr 08

This is an excellent article that has been reposted. It includes a lot of the information that outlines WHAT web 2.0 is. This includes videos and many important hyperlinks. Excellent article for newcomers to web 2.0 to pick up on.

12 Apr 08

Cool summary of an article by Liz B. Davis -- Liz took the article and extracted the most valuable bits to her using google Docs. This methodology is fascinating, but even moreso the fact we may all begin doing this together with Diigo.


  • My (Liz B. Davis ) Summary of Key Points (All are quotes directly from the article): Online "Predators" and Their Victims. Myths, Realities, and Implications for Prevention and Treatment. by: Janis Wolak, David Finkelhor, and Kimberly J. Mitchell - University of New Hampshire and Michele L. Ybarra - Internet Solutions for Kids, Inc.
  • The publicity about online"predators" who prey on naive children using trickery and violence is largely inaccurate.
  • adult offenders who meet, develop relationships with, and openly seduce underage teenagers

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11 Apr 08

I'm reading some great posts from students about the keynote. This one in particular was very captivating.

In the digital age, we do not have to strike in front of the White House. We effect change by telling the world the truth from the comfort of our own homes using the Internet with facebook, myspace, blogger, and so much more."

  • I agree that in the upcoming generation, my generation, we control our screen instead of watching it as our parents did.
  • Collaboration is not just a word in the dictionary that we have to recite to a chalkboard. It’s something that we have become accustomed to; it is as natural to us as breathing.
  • In the digital age, we do not have to strike in front of the White House. We effect change by telling the world the truth from the comfort of our own homes using the Internet with facebook, myspace, blogger, and so much more.
28 Mar 08

Don Tapscott is keynoting this year's Horizon Project -- we are very excited. This is the page where he will "deliver" his keynote which will be posted some time around April 15th, 2008. Mass collaboration does change everything -- we can connect with authors such as this!

10 Apr 08

This short insightful article from Alan Levine with the new media consortium explains wikis beautifully. I love it!

  • ‘No one has “forgotten” or “left out” anything. You just haven’t added it yet.’
  • Sure its messy, its not perfect alpha order, it does not contain “everything” (like there is a central authority who knows everything about every twitter user), but it has/will have a lot of value because its “collective” input.
10 Apr 08

Mashup contest to envision the future of education and win a lot of prizes! This is a great idea!

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