Saturday, June 30, 2007

More Google Stuff

These links are some resources I found out about during the course of NECC 2007.

Scavenger Hunt -

Designing with Sketch up Infowiki -

Sketch up can work in conjunction with Google Earth

Google Earth Lessons for Teachers:

Google Lit Trips:

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Session notes: Use Your Noodle—Learn Moodle!

Michelle D. Moore,

What is moodle?
Course Management System
Originally crated by Martin Dougiamas
Based on social constructionist pedagogy

Moodle Modules –
Scorm – packages bring in from third party applications

POW Web – hosting for moodle about $7 a month

Email Michelle to see how it is set up and works for a teacher. put in a user name and password, then fill out the information and you can look at moodle like a student would.

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Session notes: Ending Keynote

Dr. Tim Tyson – Mabry Middle School
Dr. Tim Tyson, principal of Mabry Middle School, has been called "the Pied Piper of Educational Technology" by the School Library Journal
Schools have access to immediate global distribution.
He told students “if you produce exemplary work, it will immediately be put in global distribution”
He challenged the students: What is so important that everyone on earth needs to hear it?
Authentic assessment – real-life learning
**The effective educator in this age of hyper connectivity is the educator that collapses the distance between children and meaningful contribution.**
It’s about making meaningful contributions to society.
**Meaningfulness is the product of connectedness and sharing.**
Student examples: (dark side of chocolate)

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Session notes: Contemporary Literacy in the New Information Landscape

David Warlick, The Landmark Project
password for wiki: (email David)
Adults were taught to assume authority.
1. Go to Wikipedia to learn what it says on the topic
2. Prove the info found there is true or false – provide details
Reading –
Find it – in a digital networked landscape
Decode it – regardless of format
Evaluate it – to determine its value
Organize it – into personal digital libraries
It’s not just about reading the information but about exposing the information.
Math –
Second life – virtual place that is tied to actual weather data
Taking math and using it to program second life places, hover crafts, etc.
Using numbers to manipulate everything – audio
It’s about employing information to solve problems, draw conclusions, etc.
Writing –
How do we get the message through all of the information that is out there?
Expressing compelling messages with text, images, sound, animation, and video
Express ideas compellingly – example Othello movie trailer – book publishing website -
The nature of information is changing
writing-- expressing
don’t forget ethics!
problems:spam _ cost the world $50 BILLION in 2005 (US - $19 billion)
We could bring HIV/Aids under control for less than $35 billion.

Ethical use of information!
Seek truth and express it
Minimize harm
Be accountable
Respect and protect information infrastructure - ideas and information
Student/Teacher code of ethics
Stop integrating technology! Integrate literacy!

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Session notes: Research: Redesign Assignments with Social Bookmarking

Please excuse the skimpy notes. This was a Bring Your Own Laptop session so I was busy "keeping up" with the facilitator and taking notes at the same time. :)

Lucie deLaBruere, St. Albans City School

Redesign research assignments for students, increasing critical thinking and maximizing your own productivity in managing online information using social bookmarking tools such as
Furl – exports in MLA and APA format
Presentation located here -
Learning with Lucie -
Use to create bookmarking lists that anyone can edit.

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Session notes: Keynote panel discussion on innovation, creativity and the school of the future

What do the arts, brain research, and creativity have to do with the emerging face of education? EVERYTHING! The "creative class" is on the move, and as the world flattens and competition in the global economy increases, the roles of creativity and innovation come into focus.

Moderator: Andrew Zolli
Panel: Elizabeth Streb, Choreographer; Michael McCauley, Creative Director; Mary Cullinane, Technology Architect; and Dr. Francesc Pedro, OECD/CERI.

How innovative are countries?
US – 80% use a computer at home
40% use a computer at school
What’s more important? The more computers are used at home the higher math scores raised.
Greater faith = greater creative thinking
Nature of place – create a place in which failure was an option~ kids and educators felt safe to fail
Concept of ad hoc gathering places – where kids could gather and socialize
Flow state – mix up the people around to encourage creativity
What makes teachers innovators?
Ability to include users and doers in the process of innovation
Ability to network
Ability to work on a longer basis- work autonomously and allow innovation to bubble up
Technology - we miss the connection of educational technology, science and research
Connection of the brain and learning – a series of reports that demystified the understanding of the brain
Learning foreign languages – should start as soon as possible
Separating girls from boys – no evidence based on research for single sex classes – no difference in the male or female brain
A Whole New Mind by Dan Peek – a new report on understanding the brain
“motive” – constantly ask what motivates kids, obstacles, trends, interests, value, and environment

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Session notes: The Longest Mile: From Media Resources to Successful Lesson Plans

Lynell Burmark, VisionShift International

When we hear something it goes to short-term memory. Images go to long-term memory.
Research on Images and long-term memory

Each eye has 1,000,000 fibers to the brain; each ear has 30,000. Which route is more compelling?

Humans process visuals 60,000 times faster than text. (3M Corporation)

Words are processed sequentially; images simultaneously.
Words can only recall images we have already seen.

Power point slide that is most effective: full-screen image with voice-over

Studying for tests? Using illustrated materials, retention and recall increase 42% and transfer increases 89%.

It’s Never 2 Late –

AccuWeather Education

American Library Association Great Sites

Apple Learning Interchange

Discovery – UnitedStreaming™


Jeopardy games

Lesson plans from the American Memory collections (Library of Congress)

Library of Congress


Outta Ray’s Head


Primary School

Resources for Images:
“Web Resources for Images”
Click handouts
Click Enter
Username: educate password: better

Lesson plan: A Picture’s Worth a Thousand Words

Look at a picture
Students write 3 things they see; 2 things they infer; and 1 question to ask.

Progressive Story-
Use a koosh ball
Use 4-16 images
Students start a story
Next person who catches the ball continues the story
And so on.

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Session notes: A Bright Idea: Shedding Light on Web 2.0 Applications

Kathy Schrock, Kathy Schrock's Guide/Nauset Schools

Links referenced:
Kathy Schrock’s recent presentations:
Vocabulary – AJAX – Asynchronous JavaScript And XML
Ability to share, connect, and create with many, many others of like minds and interests
Educators need:
A way to find others with same professional interests– a social bookmarking site
to join groups and collaborate – Wiki
Wikis in the classroom –
Jot Spot– from google – a free wiki hosting service
Pageflakes – make your own pages
Gliffy - – online schematic floorplan/graphic organizer - – brainstorming and concept-mapping
Share evaluated resources
Zoho Creator – - online database-creation tool
Public or private databases; Can allow others to add/edit; Includes a read-only URL for users
Slide share –
FURL - saves a copy of a page from the web
Zamzar – file conversion tool
Writeboard – collaborate on writing
Skype - $14.95 a month; web conferencing tool
Skrbl – online interactive whiteboard

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Session Notes: Considering 1-to-1: Here's a Toolkit to Get Started

Anita Givens, Texas Education Agency with Kelly Griffin and Karen Kahan

Referenced weblinks:
As a part of the Texas Immersion Pilot (TIP), students and teachers are expected to gain and seamlessly integrate Technology Applications knowledge and skills across the curriculum. These standards are aligned with the NETS standards. Administrators are expected to provide vision and leadership and work with the schools to ensure that technology is best used to improve teaching and learning.
Online instructional resources
Online formative and diagnostic assessment tools
Productivity software tools
Tech support
Professional Development centered on technology literacy and integration
Parents went through an orientation session – required before students would be issued a laptop

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Session notes: Digital Storytelling: Be the Next Ken Burns!

Peter Scott, Classroom Connect
**The Educational uses of Digital Storytelling -

Digital storytelling –
What is digital storytelling? Is the modern expression of the ancient art of storytelling. Digital stories drive their power by weaving images, music, narrative and voice together.
Ken Burns website – educators part
Civil War letters – sample of fourth grade project – used photostory3 – free software from Microsoft
Where do you begin?
Suggested uses:
Response to literature
Character study
Historical account
Lab report
Class trip
Parent night
And more.
What technology is required? Download and/or purchase the necessary software – word editor, image editor, multimedia editor
Movie maker
Photo Story 3
What are the phases in creating a digital story?
Phase 1: preparation
Define purpose
Align project goals and objectives
Sample storyboard – see handouts
Clusters information –
Airset –
Digital camera tip:
Turn the camera upside down
Copyright – pay attention to copyright laws when working with digital images
Phase2: development
Compose and edit ideas and narration
Edit media to better adapt to storyboard
Google Docs:
Online word processor
Phase 3: customization
Transitions, effects, final revisions
Photostory – can create your own music
Phase 4: Culmination

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Session notes: Constructivist Teaching with Technology: Learning with Laptops

Karl Fisch, Arapahoe High School with Brian Hatak, Brad Meyer, Anne Smith and Barbara Stahlhut

Three high school classes received laptops to use in their classrooms.
Students did not take the laptops home.
AP Government class showed significant improvement on AP test scores after one year.
Staff development centered on constructivist learning approaches – not the laptops.
A good example of what high school students can do!
Student publishing on the web – created a blogging policy

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Session notes: Global Awareness through Geotagging: Creating and Using Digital Photo Maps

Dr. Becky Sue Parton & Dr. John Dawson
Texas Woman’s University

Geotagging: creating geographical tags on images
Creating digital photo maps
25 integration ideas
Students bring baby photos tagged with the place of their birth. Create a class map as a group.
Plan a trip in groups. Find photos of famous places (i.e. the Alamo) for the map. Extend the activity with travel distances, climate, & costs.
For a history lesson, download images of all the Presidents & place in their home state. Compute percentages by state.
For a science lesson, research the region where particular dinosaurs lived & map. (or any animal’s origins).
Research the past locations of the Olympics. Select a representative image from each on & map. Discuss how countries share the responsibility & honor of hosting the games. (or follow the torch route)
Find photos of state birds (or flowers) & map to the capitals.
If the students have pen pals, or missionaries they support for Christian schools, a photo or avatar could be used to start culture talks.
Track natural disasters for a period of time (i.e. places tornadoes touched down for a month) & gather related data + discuss weather.
For older students, select a few potential colleges, map with the mascot, discuss differences.
Track a band or singer on a concert tour. Scan album covers & map on the cities.
Zoom in to a local area & do a street level map of a race for a worthy cause. Tie in exercise talks.
For older kids, take a walking trip & let them photograph environmental problem areas (i.e. trash, etc). Take a long/lat reading (using GPS device) & then map.
Design a .jpg image of the word “hello” in languages around the world & map appropriately.
For history, map famous battle sites or walks (ex. Revolutionary).
Release a set of balloons with instructions for the finder to mail back a postcard indicating where it was found and then map generic balloon images on the spots.
Find images from recent movies & place on a map where filming occurred (i.e. Jurassic Park was done in Hawaii). Discuss logistics.
Get images of currency around the world & place appropriately; tie in math lessons or the “Where in the world is George” website.
For older students have them pick 5 items from home & take pictures. Then tell them to see where the item was made. Place the photos in that country (just in the center). Look for trends & discuss job issues.
Get images of famous paintings & place them in the country where the artist lived(s). i.e. Kinkade – USA. Use the map as a quiz also.
Send several UPS packages & track their route on the web. Put “package images” for all the stops along the way & discuss the mail system with younger kids.
Create a school map of sport events when students travel as a “wall of victory.”
For a driver’s ed class, have students get the accident reports for a week for a large city like Dallas. Place car images on the locations. Link to a report on injuries & discuss hazardous areas, etc.
Students can make drawings of Native Americans, scan them, & put them on an Indian Reservation that exists today. Social studies topics such as the Oregon trail for settlers is another approach.
Use a map in combination with a video conferencing experience (i.e. Deaf kids at TX School for the Deaf & storytellers at Gallaudet).
Virtual Field Trips

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Thursday, June 28, 2007

What did I learn from NECC 2007?

On June 23rd, I made a list of what I wanted to learn from NECC 2007. It's one thing to look forward to an exciting event/opportunity but it's another to actually sit down and decide so what were the actual results. What did I come away with from the NECC 2007 conference? Below is a list of what I wanted to learn with a note of how that happened or not.

  • my "horizons" expanded - I heard about more things at this year's conference than what I knew about. I had heard about the "flat project" but didn't really know about the origin or the ideas behind it. I was fortunate to meet both of the originators of the project. They are dynamic teachers who want to harness the power of web 2.0. I intellectually knew what web 2.0 was but the many examples I saw through sessions I attended made it really come to life. Tagging and geotagging were definitely new to me and I finally got a handle on social bookmarking.
  • my thinking challenged - During a session with Christopher Moersch, it dawned on me that I had been approaching some things with my students not really "wrong" but not quite "right." I plan this year, as a result of that session as well as the closing keynote, to work more on problem-based learning in my classroom. Giving kids the opportunities to solve real problems.
  • practical ways of impacting teaching and learning that are new (to me) - I enjoyed the sessions on digital storytelling and using digital images to impact learning. I came away with some very specific things I can do with my students to reach today's learner. Also, the hands-on Moodle session was very good. I've already inquired with the head tekkie at my school if we can host it on our server.
  • renew my spirit - Wow! My head is spinning, my heart is racing, and I'm working on the information I learned the very next day after the conference ended!
  • spark an enthusiasm that is contagious - same as above!
  • how to take students and teachers into the technologies of Web 2.0- I plan to use with my students this coming school year. That session offered a practical how to use it with kids approach. It was very helpful!
  • gems that will help with 1 to 1 implementation - I attended a session that some folks from Arapahoe High School conducted on the immersion of technology and a laptop program. It was refreshing for me to see and hear high school teachers talk about their experiences. I believe web 2.0 will be intertwined with any effort on our part to successfully implement a 1 to 1 program.
  • how people from all over the world are dealing with barriers that present itself as we infuse technology - The discussions in the sessions seemed to all come back to one point. The difference maker is the teacher. We need more teacher leadership in the area of learning pedagogy which will in turn include technology.
  • what the future of instructional technology is - The future is undefined. That is unsettling to us. But as one presenter put it (I think David Warlick), this is the first time in history that teachers are preparing students for a world of which no one knows the characteristics. Problem-solving, global citizenship, critical thinking, ethics, compassion, etc., will be the things that carry through to new settings, tools, and societies.

Overall, what a great conference! Thanks, ISTE!


Time flies when you are having fun!

I can't believe that another day of the conference is over. Just one more day. I had a marvelous day today at the NECC conference. All of the sessions I attended today were interesting, engaging and useful. I attended two of the BYOL sessions and really enjoyed those. The first was Research: Redesign Assignments with Social Bookmarking. This session went through how to use with students in a class setting. That was very helpful to me. I know I am behind the curve a little but the idea of tagging was new to me this year and this session helped to clarify that for me. The second BYOL session I attended was on Geotagging. This is also new to me so it was also helpful. Global Awareness through Geotagging: Creating and Using Digital Photo Maps
I knew about flickr but hadn't heard of trippermap until that session. I have heard more uses for Google Earth than I knew existed in the last several days! I'm making a to do list based upon what I have learned from the conference. How much of summer is left?
David Warlick's session on Contemporary Literacy was quite good and the panel discussion/keynote in the morning was interesting!
One more day of the conference on Wednesday and it promises to be another great day! I will try for a second time to go to the Moodle session(it was standing room only the first time it was offered), attend the Georgia ISTE affiliate meeting, and listen to a closing keynote that should be tremendous!
But now, a little sleep . . .


Monday, June 25, 2007

NECC 2007

Attending the EdBloggerCon on Saturday really inspired me to resurrect this blog. I've already learned so much just from Saturday and the first session this morning. This morning's session was on digital storytelling. It was very practical and I came away with some good, tangible strategies for how to get started with my students. The presenter has a website where you can access his handouts if you are interested.

On to my next session . . .