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Social media and email accounts are being hacked and women stalked as smartphones with global positioning technology create new avenues for domestic violence.
Defamation is only the tip of the iceberg according to lawyers who say social media-related challenges could range from workplace bullying claims to commercial disputes.
Matt McClelland was documenting bushwalks and bushfires in Australia long before Google with his own 360-degree camera rig.
I’ve hit a slump.
Blogging has been slow and an arduous task as of late, and I seemingly have struggled to find inspiration to write. I have committed myself to continuously write in this blog because it helps me to focus not only my growth as an educator, but as a person. Thinking and sharing out loud has truly made me grow in my thinking and has helped to clarify my thoughts. The process of blogging has been extremely helpful.
So why the slump when once it was so easy to write?
Probably one of the reasons is that I am trying to spend more quality time with those that I care about, and putting down the phone, hiding the computer, and just valuing someone else’s presence. Finding balance is key so I have been comfortable with writing less.
I don’t think thats’ it though.
To me, one of the biggest reasons that I have had trouble with writing is that I have focused on creating and sharing more, and consumption less. I attribute this to not only having less time to read the work of other educators, but also I have been spending a lot of my time on the road, preparing and delivering presentations, not having the time to simply sit and get.
Yup, I need more sit and get.
The importance of creation in schools is something that I truly believe in and should be a huge focus, but I also believe that there is still a huge value in the delivery of content and information. Learning from hearing others, reading, viewing, watching, and simply consuming information, often gives us the inspiration to create. Several years ago, John Medina, writer of “Brain Rules”, talked about the idea that creation without consumption would be similar to playing “air guitar”; you would have an idea of the motions, but you wouldn’t necessarily be able to create any meaningful. That makes sense to me.
So I am going to make more of a concerted effort to try and get to other sessions at conferences, spend more times in classrooms when I am home, read more educator blogs, and happily consume some information. WIthout that focus on consumption, the ability to connect, create, and develop my own thoughts will continue to be a struggle.
Imagine a world where everyone can read. This is the dream of World Read Aloud Day. “It is all about taking action to show the world that the right to read and write belongs to all people.” Parents, students, teachers and community members from more than 60 countries across the globe are coming together today to address the issue of adult and childhood illiteracy.
Jasmine Shannon wanted to try a skype linkup this week and the World Readaloud Day made the perfect connection for my 9/10 ICT class and Jasmine’ 5-7 year olds. What seemed like a simple task turned into quite a lesson of learning. I thought my kids would grizzle about doing this but there was only silent affirmation when told. Here is how it looked:-
- Students worked out their partner as they were to read in pairs
- As a class, discussed what books would be appropriate for young ones
- Students found books they thought the young ones might like to have read to them either from the library or from the prep-2 classrooms. Not surprisingly most of the books featured animals. (Remember that my students live on farms or in small rural towns)
- Spent 15 mins working out who would read which pages. Even the poorest of readers were capably reading their share!
- Practised speaking to the webcam in the tools>video settings option of skype and showing the page of their book.
- Had to work out our setup for video projection of the class. A student team put up a tripod with a webcam on top.”
- At the appointed time linked up with Jasmine from Tipperary Cattle Station in outback Northern Territory.
- Jasmine’s class read their book as a whole class.
- ICT students came up in pairs and read their book
As we ran out of time, several of the girls stayed in at lunchtime to read their books. Then students from each school shared their lunchbox via the webcam and we learnt a little of each other’s food supplies. We have a school canteen, they do not. They are in the outback and food supplies are only flown in each week etc
Did you take part in World Readaloud Day? If so, what did you do? This was a fabulous excerise that will definitely be repeated next year.
AdvancED Wyoming: Slides, Free Internet Safety Poster, Free Chapter AdvancED Wyoming Conference
March 3, 2014
March 3, 2014
Today in Wyoming was incredible. Such wonderful educators working hard to do the right thing (and I saw the best speech I’ve ever seen given by a state administrator bar none. Wow.)
If you want to see the slides I shared on 12 Habits of a successful 21st Century Educator, 7 Steps to Connect Your Classroom, or Technology Driven Differentiated Instruction, they are all there. Plus..
I put a link to my free Internet Safety Poster and to download Chapter 1 of Flattening Classrooms. I thought all of you might benefit from those freebies or slides, so enjoy.
The post AdvancED Wyoming: Slides, Free Internet Safety Poster, Free Chapter [Link] appeared first on Cool Cat Teacher Blog.
- The Merit Protection Boards is an independent statutory body established to hear grievances; appeals and reviews from employees of the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development (Victoria).
- Roland Gesthuizen
The punishing effects of hangovers did little to delay their next drinking session, according to research conducted on a group of young, regular drinkers.
Last week was school vacation week and I spent a lot more time than usual off line. I even got in a day of snowboarding. I don’t have as many links as usual but I think the ones I do have are good ones.
You can find non paying internships or you can study some computer science and find a few good paying internships. Most of the companies on that list are in the software business. Names like Google, Microsoft and Twitter. Tough to get but so worth it on so many levels.
Mike Zamansky had a couple of very good posts last week.
- I guess I'm a dumbass On one lever this is about his relationship with his students but on an other there is a great way to teach students about merge sort.
- Change the data is about how using different data can make solving some open ended problems easier.
Have we over-complicated schooling so much that we can’t see the forest for the trees? In our attempt to make schooling relevant have we discounted something so fundamental to human nature?
- Periodic table of story telling http://t.co/N4UYB52GdL #writing - Dimitris Tzouris
by: Dimitris Tzouris
Our school has a subscription to a website called the Study Skills Handbook which offers study tips to senior students. I’m sure it’s a valuable resource; so valuable in fact that it’s behind a $1200/year paywall that requires a login password in order to access it. What a bargain. I’m sure those tips wouldn’t be found anywhere else on the Internet for free at all.
Anyway, I got an email from someone at school today promoting this resource, and amongst the several study tips it suggested, it listed this one…
3. DISCOVER OTHER RESOURCES:
You could also ask your local librarian for any additional direction on where to look for resource material for your assignment. Librarians are often your best source of information. They know how to help people access relevant and appropriate information, in books, the Internet or computer based references. One of the challenging aspects of Internet based searches for school students is the complexity, language and purpose of websites, not to mention bias and reliability.
It’s true that the Internet can be a wild and woolly place to find information, with the potential for complexity, bias and reliability concerns. However, it is also the environment that most resembles real life, where complexity, bias and reliability concerns are just part of the way the world actually works. While it would be nice to think that the real world could be packaged up into nice neat little packages, decoding the messiness of real life and sorting through all that stuff is one of the real skills our students need.
That said, here are a few suggestions that students can do when they are given a research task on any topic . Of course, the suitability of each of these suggestions will depend on the topic being researched.
1. Start with the Wikipedia article. For whatever potential concerns that people might have about the public edit-ability of Wikipedia, the fact is that for the VAST majority of topics it will be the most current, most accurate and most well researched summary of the topic. Start there.
2. Having read the Wikipedia article on the topic, scroll all the way to the bottom of the page and look at the citations list. One of the requirements of Wikipedia articles is that they include a citation for every statement made, and any uncited statements are challenged and eventually removed. So for many topics, looking at the citation list (and links) will provide a treasure trove of further research ideas.
3. Go to Google Scholar at scholar.google.com and search for your topic there. These articles are all reviewed academic papers and usually provide excellent reading on most topics. Not only that, but each article in Scholar shows a link to the downstream papers that cited them, which again provides further reading. If an article has dozens, or hundreds of papers citing it as a source, then you can assume that other researchers have found them valuable. Your students probably will too.
4. Set up a bookmarking system that allows you to keep a collection of relevant links in one place. I HIGHLY recommend Diigo, not just because it is by far the best online bookmarking service around, but it also allows group collaboration on shared bookmarks and online markup of webpages. Using Diigo, a student can make comments and leave sticky notes directly ON a webpage, share those annotations with their partners, keep an organised list of relevant research articles and much more. Diigo is probably the number one tool that students should be using with web research, yet I wonder how many of them actually even know about it?
5: While in Diigo, do a search for the obvious tags related to your topic that are being used by others. This will reveal another rich resource of ideas on a topic by connecting with links and sources that other people have already found useful. It’s often a much better way to narrow in on relevant study resources than a regular Internet search because it has already been through a kind of social approval process. As more people tag a resource it gains social credibility and value, making it more likely to be the kind of resource that others will find valuable.
6. Set up some kind of tool that allows them to curate content. I recommend Flipboard, but there are many others like Zite, ScoopIt or even Pinterest. By curating relevant content into one place it builds a go-to resource for more reading on a topic. Curation like this should be a key digital information strategy.
7. Then there is the use of Internet search in general, such as Google or Bing. But too often students take a very limited approach to search because they simply don’t know any better. As well as using a rich array of search strategies and search operators (there is way more to it than just typing a couple of words into Google!) there is also Book Search, Map search, Image search, etc, each with their own nuances and advantages. While these various search tools and techniques won’t be applicable to every topic and subject, many will. Our students need to be taught about them so they know when is appropriate to use them.
8. Finally, particularly if you;re researching something that is fairly current or topical, go to Google Alerts and set up an alert for anytime that topic is mentioned online. You can be as specific or general as you like in your search terms, but whenever a new result matches that query it can send you an email to let you know about it.
So there are a few ideas for helping your students deal with those “Other Resources” that might be out there on the big scary Internet. There’s a LOT more that could be included in there, but this is a start. Maybe some of these ideas and tools are new to you, so you might like to take a look at them yourself in order to be best able to assist your students navigate this information rich, and often overwhelming, world of information they live in.
And none of that information I just shared was behind a paywall. You’re welcome.Creative Commons Image: http://www.flickr.com/photos/nomadic_lass/6820209341/
Categories: , Planet
The School Library Association of NSW invited me to speak about advocacy at their recent conference at the State Library of NSW. I was asked to talk about a range of topics including: the transition our school library is currently undergoing with the assistance of Kevin Hennah; the partnership with our local municipal library; the need for teacher-librarians to use social media, blogging and local media to publicise the savvy, changed place of libraries in school culture.
When my daughter discovered two of her literary heroes, Jackie French and Morris Gleitzman, were speaking at the same conference she was very keen for me to get her paperbacks autographed by the authors. When I mentioned this to Michelle Jensen, the president of the association, she went quite a few better and asked Lucy to introduce both Morris and Jackie. Her rationale, that a 10 year old reader was who our authors and teacher-librarians were serving, made sense.
Lucy did very well and the hashtag tweetstream had some very nice commentary from the delegates. She did not seek my assistance preparing, other than to have me listen to her practice. She prepared very conscientiously and I was proud of her efforts in front of 125 delegates (and her heroes).
Here are Lucy’s brief introductions:
First of all, I would like to thank Michelle Jensen for inviting me here today to introduce some of my all-time favourite literary heroes.
We all know Morris Gleitzman and adore his books. My dad’s favourite is Misery Guts, but I like some of Morris’s more recent stories.
I’ve avidly been reading holocaust fiction for the last year or so, and some of my favourite books are in the Once series, about a Jewish boy called Felix and his bossy, feisty best friend Zelda. The series tells the story of how they survive in the world of war around them.
What I like about these books and other novels by Morris Gleitzman, are that the characters, in the changing world around them, are so innocent, and sometimes think up the funniest stuff to solve their predicament.
Some of my favourites are Boy Overboard, the story of a young asylum seeker from Afghanistan, and Give Peas A Chance, a book chock-full of hilarious short stories.
I think the thing that’s the most incredible about Morris Gleitzman’s novels are that they can turn you from laughing to crying and back again, all on the same page.
My class last year found this out after a busy Term One spent studying some of Morris’s fantastic funny literature, especially Keith Shipley’s hilarious adventures in Australia.
I think we can all agree once you start reading Morris Gleitzman’s books, it’s pretty much impossible to stop!
You haven’t come here to listen to me, you’ve come here to listen to Morris Gleitzman. Can we give him a warm welcome, please!
I would like to start off my introduction to Jackie French, one of Australia’s most popular, prolific, and well-renowned authors, with a passage from one of her novels.
The houses crouched like mushrooms behind their iron railings. Matilda ran as fast as her skirts would let her, staying close to the fences, one shadow among many. The night air smelt of smoke from coal fires, and the big furnaces of the jam and tin factories. Someone was cooking sausages too. Her tummy clenched into a knot.
She’d eaten nothing since Tommy’s sandwiches yesterday. She’d told Mum the factory gave the workers dinner. It was a lie; Mr Thrattle’s cockroaches ate better than his workers. But Mum was so thin these days. Two shillings a week only bought food for one.
This passage is from my favourite book by Jackie French, A Waltz For Matilda, also one of her most popular historical fiction works and in her series telling the stories of the women of Australia.
Jackie writes across all genres, from picture books to historical fiction to humour and gardening nonfiction, and even newspaper columns!
Her amazing characters become so real they could almost be standing next to your seat, reading along beside you. Jackie has the ability to make different worlds come alive, as if you’re dancing with Nikko and Thetis in Ancient Greece, or fighting monsters with Boo at the School for Heroes.
For both adults an children, whatever you like, however good a reader you are, Jackie French is inspirational, as well as a near-perfect author.
Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome Jackie French to the stage!
I tried my best too. It seems, from the response on twitter and at the conference, that teacher-librarians are putting their shoulder to the wheel of convincing Premier Barry O’Farrell to champion the idea of one library card for all citizens in NSW that I have written about in the last six months in a number of publications, including this blog.
Here’s my brief slideshow to support the presentation about our library and advocacy.Advocacy from Darcy Moore Featured image: cc licensed ( BY NC SA ) flickr photo by Darcy Moore: http://flickr.com/photos/darcymoore/12875066753/ ***UPDATE from Jackie French
The post Advocacy, My Daughter, Morris Gleitzman & Jackie French appeared first on Darcy Moore's Blog.
A Guidebook For Social Media in the Classroom Edutopia
February 27, 2014
February 27, 2014
The purpose of the Social Media Guidebook that I wrote for Edutopia is fourfold:
- To help educators understand why social media writing styles are appropriate for teaching in schools
- To help educators understand the difference between using social media and socializing
- To help educators understand ways you can use this form of writing without having kids on popular social media sites
- To demonstrate using 12 examples of how popular social media sites are being used in classrooms of all ages in successful ways with hyperlinks.
The post A Guidebook For Social Media in the Classroom [Link] appeared first on Cool Cat Teacher Blog.
Custom-made kneecaps being printed by the surgeon as the patient lies on the operating table. It sounds like someone's pulling your leg, right?
A rise in 'interpersonal issues' between staff in Australia's Antarctic stations led to a new focus on preparing applicants for the isolated environment.
At my school, PLC Sydney, we just launched a BYO iPad program for our Year 5 and 6 students. This followed on from a fairly successful trial of iPads last year and the subsequent decision that we wanted our upper primary kids to have full time access to this technology. We initially looked at the idea of the school providing and managing the iPads, but in talking to the students it turned out that a very large percentage of them already owned iPads, so it didn’t seem to make much sense to spend a whole lot of money providing something that most of them already had. The general feeling from the parents was supportive of the BYO idea and the kids were keen of course.
So this week we officially launched the BYO program. We invited all the parents and students to come to an information night where we explained exactly how we wanted things to work, and far more importantly, why we felt this was the right move to be making. The response from parents was very positive, although a few were concerned that their children would not develop proper typing skills (which is amusing because it doesn’t seem that long ago when the big parental concern was that their children would not develop proper handwriting skills, so I guess we’re making progress!)
As well as uploading the slide deck to Slideshare, I also recorded the audio from the talk on my Nexus 4 using a Rode SmartLav Mic, then synced it up to the slides using the Slidecast feature. This lets viewers listen to the accompanying soundtrack while the slides change in sync.
Slidecasting on Slideshare is, or rather, was, a very cool feature that I used quite a bit. Unfortunately they decided to deprecate that feature as of today, and it will stop working altogether by the end of next month, so if you’re seeing this blog post after that time I guess the audio Slidecast won’t be working. Sorry!
Do you know of any other slideware services that allow the syncing of an audio track? It’s a great feature and I’ll miss it if I can’t find a replacement.
Categories: , Planet