Thing #23

Well this is the end of the 23 things but the beginning of Web 2.0 Learning.

What were your favorite discoveries or exercises on this learning journey?
My favorite exercises was definitely learning how to use PhotoStory 3. There is movie maker and imovie and power points but this is so different. It's so multimedia! This is the kind of tool I would use to let students express themselves with their writing. I posted my first youtube video using PhotoStory 3.

How has this program assisted or affected your lifelong learning goals?
This process has let me know that there is alot of free tools on the internet. Free stuff besides worksheets, worksheet makers and games. There are programs online that can actually help the students learn in a better way.

Were there any take-a-ways or unexpected outcomes from this program that surprised you?
Rollyo was an unexpected surprise. I'm still learning about this searchroll and I know it would be helpful when I want to control the sites my students go to. Also, I didn't know about OpenOffice. I want to learn how to use this online suite. Students would not need to have a computer at home to learn how to work on a spreadsheet or learn to do desktop publishing.

What could we do differently to improve upon this program’s format or concept?
I think the format that was used was a good one. Each lesson was able to executed without teacher instruction. I would probably just list the Web 2.0 applications so you can first go to the ones you are used to, to get them out the way then concentrate on the apps you are not familiar with doing.

If we offered another discovery program like this in the future, would you choose to participate?
I would like to participate in another experience like this one. I have really learned alot. These tools are helpful to the teacher who wants to incorporate different ways of producing outcomes of learning. Also with the bookmarking sites, teachers will have connections with other teachers all over the district especially with a district as huge as HISD.

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?
I'm not going to say awesome! This experience was eyeopening to the possibilities of internet resources teachers have to use.

Now go and comment on some of the other Players' blogs?
I will.


Thing #22 NING


Find more videos like this on TLNing

How cute is this video? I found it on TeacherLibrarian Ning. One of the social networking sites created by a Ning user.
Once again, I first heard about it from my school district but since it was never explained to me, I ignored it. I only discovered ning when I was surfing the web myself and wanted to join a social network. I think social networking gives you many skills with using the net. I love being a part of this community. It's like once you are on ning as a user, you can find other links and sites that maybe interesting to you without changing your username or password.
I think teachers in a district would love to use ning if they are encouraged to do so by showing them how easier it would make their lives. I have a friend who works at a school where she is the only 5th grade teacher there and she gets frustrated not being able to share lesson plan ideas with anyone. Well just think of how being part of a 5th grade ning network would make her life easier. I think it's the district's responsibility to let teachers know about different outlets like this one where it can help teachers think smarter not work harder.

Thing #19 Web 2.0

Well it seems I know a little more about Web 2.0 then I was given credit for. I have discovered that I have been using some of these Web 2.0 tools before I knew it was called Web 2.0. For instance, I discovered Pandora when I was working in a school that had no reception. I loved listening to a certain type of music so I just searched for some type of online radio that played what I wanted to hear. I then discovered Pandora. Besides, the apps I have learned this semester, I have been using alot of social networks, Colorblender, Yelp, Monster, and many others. I think a librarian who uses a computer knows more than what they think they know. It's just a matter of learning the correct terms of what we know already. I drove the painter crazy who painted my mother's house last year when I learned about Colorblender. We found this exotic color through color mixing online and then the painter had to go find it. Thank God for Lowes.
Some of these online applications will make a teacher's life more interesting and will make some of the more boring class lessons more exciting. The writeboard website alone has many activities to get started. I would use the photo sharing apps alot to get students to write and associate words with real pictures. It's the next best thing to being there.

Thing #18 Online Productivity Tools

I just checked out Open Office which is just a multimedia online application. I was trying to figure out how I could share it with others. I couldn't figure that part out. I think I would learn to use Open Office. One advantage of using OO is taking it everywhere you go. Unlike Microsoft, which is saved only the hard drive and we know nowadays, these cute little notebooks crash at the gentlest shake. OO and Google Docs are great tools. I have used Google docs and I'm still learning how to use it. I wrote an article and had other people correcting it or commenting on it. I know I will use it again. No space wasted on my hard drive and I can make it a private document if I want to, so I don't really see a lot of disadvantages. Free always trump issues.

Thing #21 Podcasts, Videocast

Nature Poem in Motion

This is a poem I originally wrote in 2008 while I was at the beach. I used PhotoStory3 to incorporate pictures to make a video podcast. I think it's great. This kind of activity will really get kids to want to do a better job when writing stories or poetry. I used pics from the flickr and yahoo images. The song in the background is Bobbi Humphrey's "Rain".
Credit for my pics can be viewed from My flickr gallery.

Bobbi Humphrey

Thing #20 You Tube Library Movies

You have to hear this song. It just makes the library fun. I wanted to find some videos that would make going to the library fun. The second video is about a library fairy and I tell you if she'd a slammed that book one more time...arrguuhh!!


Thing #17 Rollyo

What is rollyo? Well after spending some time with it and creating my own search roll, I have to say that I had to rewrite my post. At first I wasn't understanding the whole concept but then I went back and really looked at it and discovered it is kind of cool. I thought it was like a bookmarking search but all other kinds of sites came up when I enter my search roll. It lets you create your own search engine. I can see how a teacher would like this site because I have often wanted my students to use the sites that I have picked out for them sort of like our own database. When I was teaching lower grades I had to go over how to get to the sites I wanted them look into and then show them how to save it in favorites. This way I can just tell them to go to the Rollyo logo, click and they will discover the sites I want to look into.

Thing #16 Wikis

I had a chance to comment on the sandbox wiki. It's amazing how the teachers and students have learned so much eventhough some of this is overwhelming. I think everyone wants to continue learning now that it is explained to us instead someone trying to explain any of these applications during a inservice.
You know when I first began this class, I was not going to use wiki and it would be something I learn about but would do the other communication applications instead. Well I have learned about the wikispaces and I love it. I have my own wiki space I created call TEJ's Technology Information For Elementary if anyone wants to check it out. I also introduced the PB Wiki to my classmates as a way we could work on our project together when we were not in each others' face. I think teachers and librarians can work together collaborating when time is a factor by using a wiki. What if a teacher or librarian wanted to discuss a book with her students? She can get all kinds of responses on the students' time. The wiki is great! I'm getting ready to introduce it to my family for our family reunion meetings. How about that?

Thing #15

If you are wondering about Library 2.0 go to this great article in School Library Journal. Don't let the word journal scare you. This article will explain exactly what Library 2.0 is and what it means to the librarian's future. I want to use this quote from one of the articles I read, "Others within the profession have asserted that Libraries have always been 2.0: collaborative, customer friendly, and welcoming." Some librarians believe that this whole technology thing is just a big hype and on one hand they are right. The library and technology are two different things but so much information now can be found on the Internet that it is a big part of the library and librarians need to know how to navigate it. Then there is a quote, "We need to focus our efforts not on teaching research skills but on eliminating the barriers that exist between patrons and the information they need, so they can spend as little time as possible wrestling with lousy search interfaces and as much time as possible actually reading and learning." I didn't get this because navigating the Internet is a part of teaching research skills. I would think that a librarian would introduce the Internet search.
Check out these articles: Say good-bye to your mother’s school library
By Christopher Harris -- School Library Journal, 5/1/2006

Thing #14

I was a bit disappointed with the Technorati blog search site. I did try to look up School Library Learning 2.0 and could not find it. I try all the different ways to look it up. What I thought was funny was the group from the video
talking about Technorati and what it was talked about how it's real blogging for real people who want to have discussions that concerned more with what Lindsay Lohan was doing. I did do a search for Lindsay and guess what? She had about five blogs that included her. How funny was that? I did enjoyed Technorati like I posted about it earlier in one of my post.

Thing #13

I really like the new social online bookmarks or favorites. I have lost countless lists of favorites from hard drives that have crashed or lost favorites lists I thought I could not live without by not getting the same computer from year to year. I have been trained to use Diigo and it's good. It sometimes gets in the way with all the sticky notes that show up on your web page when you are logged in to Diigo. I did enjoyed using Delicious. I was first introduced to Delicious Bookmarking when I was working at HISD. The problem was when we were introduced to Delicious, no one told us how it worked. They just said everyone should be using it. Anyway, if you want to organize your favorites list and never lose them because they are saved online, then Delicious is the way to go. I love it with the tags. It organizes better than your computer's favorites. Commons Craft is great at explaining exactly what Delicious is and what it can do. As a teacher, I would come up with certain tags so that the other teachers in my school would know how each of us are organizing our resources. Because everyone organizes differently. I would love to use Delicious in the schools because now everyone can share their great ideas and for those teachers who are selfish but still want to post their bookmarks they can those private.


Thing #12 Commenting

I just commented on some of the blogs the students have posted. I was really enjoying the posts. I really didn't learn something really different from reading the blog about commenting but it's good advice if you didn't really listen in school and are an adult and want to start blogging and commenting. Two tips that I practice is not answering with one word comments and letting a person know how important I think their post was to me. I know when people comment on the blogs I have posted, it feels good that I get that, "I'm glad you posted this subject".

I have posted blogs and commented many times on the ning network. I love it. I would rather not discuss my blogging since it is personal but the ning network has everything from education and art to social and entertainment.


Thing #11

I thought LibraryThing was interesting. A place where people can get together and share their love for their favorite books is great. I would trust the reviews of the book lovers here if I needed to get an opinion on a book I wasn't sure about ordering or buying for myself. If I had older students, this would be a great tool to use if they were in groups and had to discuss a book but couldn't always get together.
I did check out the groups. I joined a few like the African American Literature group. I didn't see alot of actitvity in the group but it does seem current enough. I do want to check out the Poetry group I joined. I love poetry and sharing so I hope this group will give me more inspiration.


Thing #10

After trying the different image generators I found two that stood out. The first image was created using ImageChef. I think kids would enjoy this image generator since it offers categories they might me interested in I can see using ImageChef as part of a lesson.
The next two images were created using Dumpr which I found easy to use.
I really didn't like glogster. I didn't really like the graphics. I did enjoy using comic strip generator but I couldn't get all that I wanted to say inside the text window. I would recommend it's use for fun activities.

ImageChef.com Poetry Blender

Photo Fun
Dumpr - Photo Fun

Photo Fun
Dumpr - Photo Fun


Thing #9

The most simple blog finder was Bloglines. The page is simple and it asks what specifically you are looking for such as a feed, a blog or a clipping. Now the trouble I had with Blogline was when I did find a good rss news feed I wanted to read, the link was not available. I did manage to get to the site but when I did get there, the feed looked as though it had not been updated since 2003. Syndic8 was too busy looking at first sight. I was like "what?" and as I scrolled down the page, it looked as if someone wanted to impress the reader by supplying useless information. I almost did not try this page but when I did type in the same information from blogline, I came up with better, more detailed return. Syndic8 actually tracks the sites and let you know when the last update was done and if it is active or even in repair.

I found the Technorati site the most busy not confusing for the fact that if you are easily swayed away from a focal point, you don't need to cruise this site. I found myself blogging on other blogs instead of trying to find the site I wanted. It's interesting for entertainment purposes also. I like the way it is catergorized by topics.

I found this really good site for teachers and how to use technology in the classroom. It's call Free Technology for Teachers. It's also different especially the video they added about texting.

Check out my Blog List to see some great blog sites I found.


Thing #8

I thinkd rss feeds are interesting reads. If you are that type of person who likes to read the papers anyway and who likes reading about different articles, I think RSS feeds come in handy. I personally have a google feed that appears on my desktop and gives me article titles from edutopia. I decide whether I want to stop and read it or not.
As schools get more technical, I hope to see teachers using the feeds instead of newspapers whenever students need to do an assignment where ariticle reading is involoved.
Librarians could run feeds from the computer to the television sometimes so people can see them when they come in the library. RSS feeds can also be a resource students and teachers can subscribe to in order to have or save when something of interest for the class comes up.


Thing #7

I finally succumbed to the Google last summer. I first began with iGoogle and customized a page that utilized many of the features I want to see when I open up my web page to the internet such as the weather, a clock, a calendar, the google notebook and dictionary to name a few. I recently learned how to use the Picasa Web Album. I have made a collage and a slideshow using the photos I uploaded. I learn to use Google Docs for a class I was taking but I first discovered it while volunteering for the Bill White campaign. I was using a spreadsheet and I was able to share it with another user who was logged into the program at the same time. I like using Google Docs which includes word processing, databases, and spreadsheets.
I collaborated with others to edit a paper I wrote and if I didn't like the editing, I could always go back to the original version. I thought that was pretty neat.

Thing #6

This is an example of Flickr Trading Card tools.

In this post, I would like to discuss the usefulness of the Flickr Mashups. I couldn't figure out the mappr program but it seem like it would be a good program to assist teachers with social studies. The Bookr program interested me the most. This is a program that can be used with any age group. It can also be used cross curriculum. It's simple enough to just add photos from your hard drive or from the Internet to make up a photo book and share it with others or it could be use as part of a project for science to show a process. The Bookr program also took me to Phrasr, a program that would make decoding more interesting to young children or it can be used to define different terminology in different subjects using pictures.
Flickr has many apps that can be used. You just have to take a day or two to go over them all to see what suits your needs.

Thing #5

When you think of a library, you can't help but to think of history. You think of reading and success. I would post up these pictures in the library to let students see the audacity of hope. President Obama had some nerve to believe he could be President of the United States in a time when Black men lead the prison population, are mostly seen successful in rap and sports and are the lowest turn out as college graduates. You let your students know what it means to push through adversity and these images would be there to back your words. This is why I like the rain picture. You just see him pushing through it. It gives you hope to push through your own adversity no matter if the odds of success are not in your favor.

Obama in the rain

Obama is hope

Thing #3

I enjoyed posting my blog. I would like to see others blogs and how they input pictures.
Using the avatar was interesting. I've used yahoo avatar before and the only issue I have is with the variety of body types. I don't think the avatar I created really represents what I want people to think about me because of how different my body type is compared to what I posted but the avatar could also be seen as an escape. What do you think?

PS: How I post my picture: Well, I actually copied it with a right click from the picture that was downloaded into the picture gadget and I opened the picture in my picture program. I edited the size and cropped it to make it like I wanted the picture to look. I saved the file as a jpeg on my computer hard drive. I then went back to picture gadget and uploaded the picture from my Picture folder from my computer. Not really complicated probably just weird. I really felt like showing the whole body of the avatar was such false advertisement but I really wanted to display the cute jazz shirt.


Thing #2

After reading the 7 1/2 Habits of a Lifetime Learner, I have to agree that I am a lifetime learner. I love to discover new things. I feel like if I haven't done anything intellectual in a while then my brain may deteriorate. Coming from being a 1st/ 2nd grade teacher to a middle school librarian, I found myself trying to learn as much as I could about the different levels I was teaching. The longer I taught 1st grade, the more I found out that I knew nothing. I then made it my goal to learn as much as I could about how those delicate little brains work (and I'm not just talking about the babies).

Learning on your own can sometimes be frustrating and rewarding. Habit 3: Seeing problems as challenges is an easy habit I feel I have developed. No matter how difficult an assignment is to me, I feel so good when I have worked through the problem. I just feel like I need to share the information with someone else. Living by Habit 5: Creating my own toolbox of what I need to reach my learning goal is sometimes frustrating. Learning technology can be difficult sometimes especially when you don't have all the tools you need to learn what you want. Some software may be too expensive or time is a tool that is needed which is hard to come by at times. A major issue is not having anyone else around to help you with any problems you might have. I have begun to join different technology groups in hopes to find people who are working on some of the same things I am working on. I figure we can help each other learn the material.

When it comes to learning, I feel like I possess most of the habits. I know going back to school is a challenge I feel it's going to be an interesting journey.