Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Thing #23 Summary

Yea, I've done it!!

What were your favorite discoveries or exercises on this learning journey?
I really enjoyed blogging. I don't know if I'll keep it up, but it was fun to

Most Fun:
The image generators like Dumpr, Wordle, Glogster and Big Huge Labs.

Most Useful in my Work:
YouTube, TeacherTube, Rollyo, wikis

Most Likely to Be First Website I"ll Revisit:
Web 2.0 Award winners! There are a lot of things I still want to look at.

How has this program assisted or affected your lifelong learning goals?
It's taken me from someone who knew very little about Web 2.0 to someone who
knows something--at least enough to get started on a few things. I think part
of my job at school is to help other teachers get started on projects they've
got in mind. I hope you keep the Library2Play webpage open and the links
working, so other teachers can use them as a guide.

Were there any take-a-ways or unexpected outcomes from this program that surprised you?
Mainly I was surprised at how easy the end products were to send to the blog.
They've really made it easy to post neat stuff.

What could we do differently to improve upon this program’s format or concept?
I really can't think of anything to improve this. All the links worked for me,
and the directions were clear. I had adequate time, although it was a little
surprising how much time each activity took.

If we offered another discovery program like this in the future, would you choose to participate?

How would you describe your learning experience in ONE WORD or in ONE SENTENCE, so we could use your words to promote 23 Things learning activities?

Thank you for creating the space for us to do this!

Thing #22 Ning

I had no idea what a ning was before this activity! Now I would describe it as a kind of Facebook for people with the same passion, whether profession or hobby or an off-the-wall interest. I think you have to be into social networking more than I am to really use it. I looked at the Texas School Librarian ning, and read some of the discussions, one of which was comparing it to the TLC listserv. The general consensus was that it was smaller and more personal, which made it easier to feel comfortable posting and commenting. However, there was one comment (from a respected source, in my book--Carol Simpson) on that particular discussion that pretty much sums up the way I feel: you have to be realistic and face the fact that you only have a certain amount of time to devote to reading, commenting, blogging, etc. and that it's best to choose only those items that do you the most good, and leave the rest behind. Probably, nings will be something I won't choose to devote much time to.

Thing #21 PhotoStory

Another really cool tool...and very easy to use. I had to do a little tweaking because two of my posts and videos got mixed up and out of order, but that was pretty simple to fix. Also, I was afraid I was going to be out of luck on accompanying audio because I had not brought a microphone with me on vacation, plus I am virtually voice-less at the moment due to severe laryngitis, but that was also solved by PhotoStory's program.

What can I use this for? Of course, book reviews such as the one done about The Trap, but also videos showing recent (and upcoming) library events--book fairs, story time, research papers--would be popular.

What I really want to do is get this into the hands of the elementary computer teacher right away, as well as many other teachers across the district. I think they'll love PhotoStory too.

Thing #21 PhotoStory

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Friday, August 7, 2009

Thing #20 21st Century Learners

I'm not sure how I feel about this video and the one that inspired it, the college class that we watched earlier. With their solemn, non-smiling faces, they make me feel like we're ruining their lives by teaching in the "old" style and expectig them to listen, maybe even that I'm doing young students a great disservice by reading them stories in the reading circle in the library. I should be...what? plugging in a MP3 player or a DVD of the stories? Somehow that doesn't seem to be a great advancement.

I do think teachers have to be somewhat up-to-date on new technology. (Of course, it's hard to STAY up-to-date--technology regenerates and is born anew while we're sleeping every night.) More than being completely techno-savvy, we need to have a fresh, seeking kind of attitude about new things. But to completely change teaching styles, and switch completely to Web 2.0 is also doing students a disservice. We need to show them both ways. So they're 21st century learners? Who's going to say that 20th century learners have nothing to add to that repertoire?

I keep thinking about those Star Trek scenes--I'm can't remember whether their from a movie or the TV series--where Captain Picard pulls out a book and sits in his room and reads. He's surrounded by super-advanced technology, yet still reading from a book by choice. That's what I wish for these 21st century learners--a chance to know both ways.