March 10th, 2011

Moving to a new home

As of today, my One in a 1:1 world has moved to http://one2onelearning.blogspot.com/

If you follow my posts, you’ll know I’ve been blogging on our our school’s WordPress server for about a year and a half now. Since we adopted Google Apps for education, I’ve been contemplating a move from WordPress to Blogger, and this week I’ve decided to go for it. Here’s why.

1.Easier video integration- Google owes both YouTube and Blogger. Want to add a YouTube video to a post? There’s a button for that. Video not on YouTube? No problem. Blogger accepts plain old HTML so you can use embed codes. Our WordPress server required a separate widget and additional steps.

2. Easier to navigate- Blogger is more user friendly. When asked to help teachers start a new blog, I would always recommend Blogger over WordPress, so I should practice what I preach and become an expert in the tool I am most likely going to be teaching people how to use.

3. Full integration of my digital life- I share educational links and ideas on Twitter, I bookmark with Diigo, I maintain my library on Shelfari, I share photos on Flickr, I follow other education bloggers using RSS. I want to share all of that when readers view my blog.

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March 9th, 2011

Why we need more technology integration (and why we are so lucky we live in Maine)..

An article published in The Journal by Dan Gordon about the importance of technology integration as it relates to preparing students for success a 21st century workplace. All schools still have a long way to go, but Maine students and teachers have a real advantage because we have daily access to the technology tools we need. Too many schools are still operating with one computer per classroom.

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March 1st, 2011

PBS Digital Media New Learners of the 21st Century

Watch the full episode here:

Watch the full episode. See more Digital Media - New Learners Of The 21st Century.

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February 15th, 2011

So easy a first grader can do it!

I saw this video at an Apple Learning Tour event I attended last Friday. If this is what first graders can do today- imagine what they will know and be able to do by the time they get to high school! Will we be ready?

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January 26th, 2011

A great video “Rethinking Education”

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January 19th, 2011

Chicago Sun Times Article- Don’t Fear your Child’s Laptop

Don’t fear your child’s laptop!
http://www.suntimes.com/lifestyles/3277502-423/technology-media-family-parents-schwarz.html

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January 4th, 2011

Great Article about lessons learned from MLTI

School Tech: by Sarah Kessler

6 Important Lessons from Maine’s Student Laptop Program

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January 3rd, 2011

Mid-Term Exam Tech

Welcome back, I hope you all had a fun restful vacation!
As we approach the time where we are helping students prepare for mid-term exams, I wanted to share some technology tools that could help with the process:

1. Group Study Guides with Google Docs: Google Docs allows for types of collaboration that weren’t available before. Create a blank study guide, assign each student or group of students one area of the guide to complete and share it with the class. By the end of the assignment, all students get a complete study guide for the exam that they make themselves.

2. Online Flashcards and Review Games: Students can create study decks on Quizlet or Funnel Brain practice, play review games, and quiz themselves. They can also share decks publicly and quiz their classmates.

3. Online Discussion Forums: Use Moodle to create online discussion forums about mid-term review topics, giving students a chance to share their learning and ask questions of their classmates, without using class time.

4. Create Screencast videos of important concepts: A screencast is a video that captures what is happening on a computer screen along with the audio provided by the user. Have students create a screencast of themselves explaining an important topic from class. Videos can then be uploaded to YouTube, SchoolTube, or Moodle to serve as a study resource for the class. Screencasts can be easily created by opening Quicktime from the applications menu and selecting New Screen Recording from the File menu. For additional flair and emphasis, incorporate Omni-Dazzle pointer and sketch tools.

5. Link to Outside resources and share: The web is full of excellent free video resources focused on helping students learn. Khan Academy provides hundreds of free tutorial videos explaining math and science concepts from the most basic to the most advanced. iTunes U (found by opening iTunes and visiting the iTunes store) offers thousands of free educational videos, including full course lectures from dozens of colleges including MIT, Stanford, Harvard, Columbia, Cornell, and Bowdoin. These videos can be linked or embedded in your webpage, Moodle site, or blog, or shown to the class with a projector.

As always, if you need any help accessing these resources or would like some ideas for how to best integrate them into your class, please contact me. I’m happy to come in and co-teach or offer tech-support for all or part of your class, or provide extra help after school to individual students or groups.

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December 15th, 2010

The End of Privacy

If you don’t often read CNN.com you may have missed this excellent series they are doing called The End of Privacy.

Here is another great article posted today:

Online sharing: The rock ‘n’ roll of the digital generation?

Doug Gross
By Doug Gross
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December 15th, 2010

Changing the way we think about the social networking…

If you haven’t heard, Mark Zuckerberg, the creator and CEO of Facebook has been named Time Magazine’s Person of the year 2010. There’s always lots of discussion about social media and negative impact on education- but here’s the reality.

To quote the excellent Time profile written by Lev Grossman:

“This year, Facebook — now minus the the — added its 550 millionth member. One out of every dozen people on the planet has a Facebook account. They speak 75 languages and collectively lavish more than 700 billion minutes on Facebook every month. Last month the site accounted for 1 out of 4 American page views. Its membership is currently growing at a rate of about 700,000 people a day.

“What just happened? In less than seven years, Zuckerberg wired together a twelfth of humanity into a single network, thereby creating a social entity almost twice as large as the U.S. If Facebook were a country it would be the third largest, behind only China and India. It started out as a lark, a diversion, but it has turned into something real, something that has changed the way human beings relate to one another on a species-wide scale. We are now running our social lives through a for-profit network that, on paper at least, has made Zuckerberg a billionaire six times over…

“Zuckerberg’s vision is that after the Facebookization of the Web, you’ll get something in between: wherever you go online, you’ll see your friends. On Amazon, you might see your friends’ reviews. On YouTube, you might see what your friends watched or see their comments first. Those reviews and comments will be meaningful because you know who wrote them and what your relationship to those authors is. They have a social context. Not that long ago, a post-Google Web was unimaginable, but if there is one, this is what it will look like: a Web reorganized around people. “It’s a shift from the wisdom of crowds to the wisdom of friends,” say Sandberg. “It doesn’t matter if 100,000 people like x. If the three people closest to you like y, you want to see y.”  (Grossman, 2010)”.

The question for me is not about the potential negative impact of social networking on our students. It’s here- it’s not going to go away.  The question is, how can we utilize this powerful transformative social force to help kids learn and minimize the potential negative impact through education and modeling positive social behaviors.As an adult, using Facebook is a personal choice.  As an educator- you have to look at anything that gets kids this fired up and think- how can I use that to my advantage? How can I get that same kind of energy into my classroom? As educators, if our job is to help prepare for their future, how can we continue to look at a set of skills that appears to be evolving into a something that will be vital to the way we interact with each other in the future, both personally, and at work, and block it out completely?

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