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October 2007

Posts from September 2007

Apple Learning Interchange 2007 - Field Trip 2.0 Educators Group Page

Link: Apple Learning Interchange 2007 - Field Trip 2.0 Educators Group Page.

Hi All -

We've formed a group to support our ALI exhibit from this year's institute. Our goal is to encourage conversation around kicking field trips up a notch by adding digital components.

We'd love to hear your thoughts and ideas:

http://edcommunity.apple.com/ali/story.php?itemID=12021

http://edcommunity.apple.com/ali/group.php?id=15100

Additionally, we are planning on hosting a group live conversation using Flashmeeting in the near future. We'll post the date and time in our ALI group space when we have that set.

Thanks!


Apple Learning Interchange 2007 - Field Trip 2.0

Link: Apple Learning Interchange 2007 - Field Trip 2.0.

Here's the team project I worked on this summer as part of the 2007 ADE Summer Institute. It was really an enjoyable experience working with a fun team of people who produced and followed through on our plans. Make sure you check out the various movies and such that were created by my teammates. The great thing about the Apple Learning Interchange is that you can add such media directly to your iTunes library with a click of a button located in the right hand column of the page.

Speaking of plans, we are plannng adding content to this site as the year rolls along. In fact, I went on my first field trip at my new school two weeks ago, and need to do something with the material I collected. I also am planning on holding a videoconference on fieldtrips as some point so that educators can discuss interesting field trips and resources. 

Please take a minute to review our content. Leave a comment or two and rate our project!


Another Hit: Google Docs in Plain English

I love all the videos from Common Craft and here is one that's new to me. I just added it to my favorites in You Tube, which I'm increasingly relying on as a way of bookmarking videos I frequently use in workshops. You can view my channel here to see my favorites and videos I've created myself, although I haven't  upload many of those.

Anyway, I'd love to see more Common Craft videos explaining Google features such as Google Groups. I just made a Google Group for my daughter's soccer team, and some parents found joining and using the group perplexing. It's a reminder to me that all this techie stuff may be easy for me, but somehow, something gets lost in translation and other perfectly intelligent people don't find it that way and miss the power of today's internet. I really need to rethink how I explain techie stuff to people...


Friday 5: Special Mystery Guest: ELL

Hi All -

Larry Ferlazzo has put together tremendous resources for teachers and students. He teaches Social Studies and English to English Language Learners and native-English speakers at Luther Burbank High School in Sacramento, CA.  He was named the Grand Prize Winner of the 2007 International Reading Association Presidential Award For Reading and Technology.  He has a website with over 7,000 categorized links accessible to English Language Learners and younger native English speakers at http://www.bayworld.net/ferlazzo/english.html and a blog (http://larryferlazzo.edublogs.org/) where he daily shares new content added to the website. A few months ago, I shared his student examples page (http://www.bayworld.net/ferlazzo/Student%20Work.htm l) with Friday 5 readers; it's helpful because I'm always seeking concrete examples of student technology use. Thanks, Larry, for sharing your expertise with us!

Lucy Gray
elemenous@gmail.com
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1) Oxford University Press -- Student   Sites
 
Hundreds, and probably thousands, of online   English language development activities for all levels.
 
 
2) Peace Corps English Teaching Manuals
 
I think the teaching manuals the Peace Corps   has developed for teaching English as a second language are extraordinarily   helpful to teachers.
 
 
3) Starfall
 
The best online site to teach reading to   beginning English Language Learners or young native speakers to read..
 
 
4) Dvolver Moviemaker
 
A great site for students to develop their   writing skills in a fun and creative way by creating simple movies.
 
 
5) Hello World English
 
A site for beginning English Language Learners   to learn basic "survival" English.
 
 
6) English 180
 
A very good site for both Beginning and   Intermediate English Language Learners with graduated lessons.
 
 
7) English Interactive
 
Another excellent site for both Beginning and   Intermediate English Language Learners with exercises at various levels.
 
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  You can subscribe to the Friday 5 at   http://groups.google.com/group/friday5 or read it in my blog:   http://elemenous.typepad.com.
 
 




Friday 5: Ning

Hey Everyone -

A year or two ago, during the early stages of my foray into Web 2.0 applications,  I was introduced to a web site that I really didn't quite get called Ning. My vague recollection of the original Ning was that one could create various items to share with others such as a list of books. I recall exploring it a bit, not finding it particularly user friendly or compelling, and setting it aside for other Web 2.0 tools.

Fellow ITM blogger Steve Hargadon revived my interest in Ning last spring. Using Ning, he created two online communities that I joined, and I found that this social networking tool had completely changed since my initial exploration. In a nutshell, anyone can create a customized space online, make it public or private, and invite others to participate via threaded discussions, the sharing of multimedia, and posting of blog entries. Ning communities can be further embellished with all sorts of web widgets that are available from third party developers as well.

I am fascinated by how quickly Steve's Classroom 2.0 Ning caught on. Since March 2007, nearly 3000 educators have joined this group which focuses on using Web 2.0 tools (Flickr, del.icio.us, Google Docs & Spreadsheets are examples of this). For some reason the format put forth by Ning seems conducive to participation by others. Several worthwhile communities have since developed and I thought I'd share them with you this week.

I think Ning is a powerful tool because it makes it easy for educators to take charge of their professional development by interacting virtually with other like-minded souls. For instance, I've had answers to questions within hours, been directed to great edtech resources, philosophized with online colleagues about the state of education, and even met many of my fellow "friends" on Ning in person at conferences. My personal network has grown substantially because of this.

Keep your eye on Ning as it is still being developed and additional features are frequently announced. Recently, Steve started another group that focuses just on the uses of Ning within education. Ning wasn't necessarily developed as an education tool, but it seems teachers have found their Ning experiences worthwhile and are eager to try it out in their classrooms. Something has to be done about advertising within Ning sites before I will try it out with younger students, but in the meantime, it's a great tool for working with adults or maybe even high schoolers.

I hope you'll check out the following Ning groups and consider joining one or two! Let me know if you know of any other good Nings!

Thanks,

Lucy Gray
elemenous@gmail.com

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1) School 2.0
http://school20.ning.com/

This is one of Steve Hargadon's original Ning sites and it focuses on rethinking schools under 21st century terms.

2) Classroom 2.0
http://classroom20.ning.com/

Here's a very active group in which people explore the use of emerging technologies in education.

3) Ning in Education
http://education.ning.com/

4) Global Education Collaborative
http://globaleducation.ning.com

Yes, this is a shameless plug for a Ning that I started and have been nurturing. If you're interested in global education related topics, this is the Ning for you. Many educators from around the world have joined this adventure and are in need of global collaborative partners. If you are looking for resources, projects, and ideas, this is the place for you! We will be holding our first online meeting this Sunday evening CST. Email me if you're interested in participating.

5) Literacy Coaches
http://literacycoaches.ning.com/

Matthew Needleman's new literacy site is designed to support coaches in his district using the Open Court reading series, but it is open to everyone and growing! Literacy coaching is a fairly new concept to me and I'm interested in it as its practiced in my new set of schools.

6) Open Education
http://openlearn.ning.com/

Learn more about Open University's open source courses and materials here.

7) Library 2.0
http://library20.ning.com/

A plethora of librarians have gathered here to share ideas and resources.

8) Learning 2.0 Conference
http://learning2cn.ning.com/

This event is taking place right now in Shanghai. Isn't is amazing how we can now follow along and learn virtually? This is the Ning that interests me the most right now!


Beware of Quechup Spam Scam » Moving at the Speed of Creativity

Link: Beware of Quechup Spam Scam » Moving at the Speed of Creativity.

Don't do it! Don't accept any Quechup invitation from me!!! I got an invite from Steve Dembo, and promptly joined,as we all know that I love Web 2.0 stuff. Well, they scan your address book to find contacts, and then they send unwanted email to the addresses listed. I can't believe this is legal. 

My sincere apologies to anyone that took the bait. There's a great privacy lesson in here somewhere... I'm trying to convince myself that this is a teachable moment. Hah.


Global Education Collaborative Meeting #1

I'm playing around with this very cool video conferencing tool called FlashMeeting. It's sponsored by Open University, I think, which hosts all sorts of open source content and courses. FlashMeeting is used for research purposes, so you to submit an application to be able to book through them, and meetings are recorded. Anyway, I'm hosting my first FlashMeeting this Sunday evening (September 16th 8PM CST)to discuss global education efforts; please consider joining and sharing any ideas that you may have. The meeting will be available for viewing when we're finished, too.

If you need more info, please contact me or check out the Global Education Collaborative ning.


Blog Action Day 2007 : Remix This Idea

I found a link to this in the Google Earth Users Guide Project blog. The main site can be found here .  I  like this activist concept, and will be thinking about what I can blog about on October 15th.

In the meantime, what about an Education Blog Action Day? Wouldn't it be neat if edubloggers or any bloggers with an interest, for that matter, blogged on a particular topic in education on one day, tagged it with the same tags and made a statement to the world? What topics would be good for this? Hmmm....perhaps something related to  NCLB, School 2.0, early literacy, digital divide? What is a univeral issue for everyone with education?


Friday 5: Math Mania

Hi All -

Just a quick list of some recent math related finds.

Have a great weekend,

Lucy Gray
elemenous@gmail.com

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1. Rainforest Maths
http://www.rainforestmaths.com/

I thought this site was better than typical drill types; nice sets of visuals accompany math problems organized by grade level. The same web author publishes a math dictionary and a writing help site. You can find these links at the bottom of the Rainforest Maths home page.

2. Intermath
http://intermath.coe.uga.edu/

This is a project from the state of Georgia that seeks to improve the content knowledge of middle school math teachers. I was struck by the links within lessons to "constructionaries", small web demonstrations of various mathematical principles. The lessons seem to refer in general to many interactive sites including Interactivate, a site dedicated to math and science interactive tools. This page, in particular, has some great tools.

3. That Quiz
http://www.thatquiz.com/

Create customized online math quizzes for students and track their progress at this web site.

4. Countdown
http://countdown.luc.edu/NCTM_cat/NumberOperation/WholeNumbers/index.html

This is a video library of math TV shows produced at Loyola University in Chicago. I used to watch this show with my students two schools ago, and I think it's great that the materials are now archived online.

5. Math.com's Homework Help Everyday Math
http://www.math.com/homeworkhelp/EverydayMath.html

Everyday Math is a popular math program currently used in my previous and current schools.

6. Everyday Math Resources - Center School District
http://www1.center.k12.mo.us/edtech/everydaymath.htm

Find more resources here for using the Everyday Math series.

Don't forget that you can subscribe to the Friday 5 at:    http://groups.google.com/group/friday5


Google Books: Create and Search Your Own Library

Link: Google Books.

Check it out! You can create your own personal list of books, complete with reviews, tags, RSS feeds,  and stars in Google Book Search! You can import books by ISBN!  Think of educational implications... annotated bibliographies of recommended books, book lists tagged by teaching units, writing book reviews, running records of books read, browsing lists of other people, etc. Any other ideas?

UPDATE: Here's a link to my library so far. I'm planning on starting with my favorite childhood tomes. Make sure you click on one of the About This Book links as it takes you to an interesting page with links referencing other resources.