FEATURED TOPIC THIS ISSUE: Emerging Technologies for Professional Development and Classroom Teaching and Learning August 2009
Back to school time already and teachers, parents, and students are looking excitedly at the year ahead! Now more than ever with funds being short, technology will be utilized in our classrooms, businesses, and homes to economically deliver professional development, instruction, and training. Broadband initiatives across the nation and in Alabama are narrowing the digital gap and equalizing access to the internet, especially in rural areas that have been isolated. Smart phones and small internet devices are making hardware more affordable and portable and allow access to information around the clock in and out of schools and the workplace. Students are constantly in touch with each other through online social networking sites such as face book, my space, and ut ube. Teachers have discovered that they can capitalize on networking, using the web to get ideas, share conversations with other teachers, and use technology to enhance classroom instruction and course delivery.
School systems are using the internet and technology for professional development. Delivering training to the desktop is an economical, "on your own time" way of fulfilling professional development requirements when travel is restricted and time is short. In this issue we will take a look at some of the emerging technologies that can be used for professional development and enhancing classroom instruction. Teachers have jumped on the bandwagon to channel innovative learning through the use of the technologies that students use. It is an ever changing environment that has truly morphed into the seamless use of technology in the pursuit of life long learning.
REACHING STUDENTS WITH EMERGING TECHNOLOGIES
Blogging-what is it?
Definition: Blog/Web Log: a web page containing brief, chronologically arranged items of information. A blog can take the form of a diary, a journal, what's new page, or links to other web sites. (Peter Scott, Internet Librarian 2001)
This site is dedicated to discussions and reflections on the use of Weblogs, wikis, RSS, audiocasts and other Read/Write Web related technologies in the K-12 realm, technologies that are transforming classrooms around the world.
This site was created by an elementary teacher who saw the power of the blog when using this tool in class during literature circle discussions. She found that students were better prepared and reluctant readers found blogging to be a motivating factor to read.
Games That Teach
The Literacy Center Education Network is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization with a mission to deliver free, professionally-designed, education material to preschool-age children. Utilizing the power of the Internet, we distribute education material directly to children in their homes, libraries, and schools.
StoryPlace, an interactive web site, came about to provide children with the virtual experience of going to the library and participating in the same types of activities the library offers. In the summer of 1999, a team of Children's Librarians and Specialists got together with in-house web developers to begin development on this exciting site. In the Spring of 2000, StoryPlace premiered with its first section, the Pre-School Library, completed. StoryPlace currently consists of two libraries, the Preschool Library and Elementary Library.
This web site was developed to help students improve their math skills interactively. Although you can purchase the desktop software, you can print flashcards,worksheets, use the homework helper. It is a simple web site, but full of good interactive games.
BBC Online is central to what this site provides. Besides specific sites for young learners at school and home, there is a wide range of material geared to teachers' needs and also information and advice for parents.
Learning Zone Broadband is a rich online source of audiovisual material tagged to the school curriculum. Designed for colleges, primary, and secondary schools, Learning Zone Broadband enables teachers to find the best clips to fit lessons. Clips can be searched by subject, topic or keyword and are streamed via the internet.
Definition: An e-portfolio is an intentional collection of student (or teacher) work that is stored in electronic format. They are usually pieces that are selected as the best representations of an individual's work and can create a historical perspective of progress and growth over time.
"The Benefits of E-portfolios for Students and Faculty in Their Own Words" --read what students and faculty have to say about building e-portfolios in college.
1001 Uses for a Digital Camera
This site is designed as a reference tool putting educators in touch with creative educational applications for digital cameras in educational settings. Submitted lessons and applications that have been used successfully in the classroom will be displayed for other educators to view and print.
Going Digital in the Classroom
Why Should I Use a Camera in the Classroom?
Pictures personalize learning, clarify it, frame it... and add depth.
"Using Digital Cameras to Investigate Science-Applications of Digital Photography to Support Learning Science" --read how digital cameras can help support hands-on science in the classroom.
EMERGING TECHNOLOGY AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT
Some of the same technology tools that students are using are catching on with teachers. School systems are using interactive videoconferencing and online courses to fulfill certification and professional development requirements. Teachers are finding that the very tools they are using in their own learning process can be transitioned to the classroom and used with students to enhance learning.
We all love something for nothing. With Skype’s free software – by the way, it works seamlessly with your internet connection – you can chat away with free Skype-to-Skype calls and never worry about cost, time or distance. Share the love and get your friends to download Skype so you can talk, instant message (IM) or make video calls for nothing.
Editing and Converting Sound
Audacity is a free, easy-to-use and multilingual audio editor and recorder for Windows, Mac OS X, GNU/Linux and other operating systems. You can use Audacity to:
- Record live audio.
- Convert tapes and records into digital recordings or CDs.
- Edit Ogg Vorbis, MP3, WAV or AIFF sound files.
- Cut, copy, splice or mix sounds together.
- Change the speed or pitch of a recording.
- And more! See the complete list of features.
Create extraordinary slideshows in minutes!
Hundreds of slideshows for every occasion. Create, share and amaze!
Definition: (n.) A collaborative Web site comprises the perpetual collective work of many authors. Similar to a blog in structure and logic, a wiki allows anyone to edit, delete or modify content that has been placed on the Web site using a browser interface, including the work of previous authors. In contrast, a blog, typically authored by an individual, does not allow visitors to change the original posted material, only add comments to the original content. The term wiki refers to either the Web site or the software used to create the site.Wiki wiki means “quick” in Hawaiian. The first wiki was created by Ward Cunnigham in 1995. (http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/w/wiki.html)
A workspace is a kind of free-form web site that is easy to edit. On a pbwiki, any visitor with the site's password can edit any page on the site. pbwikis can be made public to allow anyone to read a workspace, while still restricting editing to those who know the workspace's password. But pbwikis can be private, too.
Edits are done in plain text and don't require learning fancy or complex codes like HTML. Just start typing! It's also easy to create new pages and make links to pages you've already made
The Education Podcasting Network
The Education Podcast Network is an effort to bring together into one place, the wide range of podcast programming that may be helpful to teachers looking for content to teach with and about, and to explore issues of teaching and learning in the 21st century.
Definition:A podcast is simply an audio -- and sometimes a video -- recording made available online.
Social bookmarking uses an online tool that saves information on a Web site Instead of saving Web sites to your browser's Bookmarks folder.,
Delicious is a social bookmarking service that allows users to tag, save, manage and share web pages from a centralized source. With emphasis on the power of the community, Delicious greatly improves how people discover, remember and share on the Internet.
- Store all your favorites on-line
- Import your current browser favorites in a snap
- Get to them from anywhere
- Easily add new favorites
- Share some or all of your favorites with your friends
- Use tags or categories or both to organize the web the way you want
- Search to quickly find pages by tag or category or title
- Learn about cool web sites from the public favorite space
- It's free!
NEWS YOU CAN
Don't forget--giving credit for information and using good manners are always important!
The Netiquette Quiz
Test your network etiquette knowledge with the Netiquette Quiz, our first Java applet. It's nifty and fun. You need a Java-compatible browser like Netscape Navigator 2.0 or higher to run this applet. Sorry, but this applet doesn't run very well on the Macintosh platform.
Regardless of whether the source is a web site, an email communication, or a Power Point presentation, everyone needs to cite their source.