Monday, December 17, 2007

FreeRice.com - Nourish your mind

About FreeRice

FreeRice is a sister site of the world poverty site, Poverty.com.

FreeRice has two goals:

  1. Provide English vocabulary to everyone for free.
  2. Help end world hunger by providing rice to hungry people for free.

This is made possible by the sponsors who advertise on this site.

Whether you are CEO of a large corporation or a street child in a poor country, improving your vocabulary can improve your life. It is a great investment in yourself.

Perhaps even greater is the investment your donated rice makes in hungry human beings, enabling them to function and be productive. Somewhere in the world, a person is eating rice that you helped provide. Thank you.

FreeRicehas a custom database containing thousands of words at varying degrees of difficulty. There are words appropriate for people just learning English and words that will challenge the most scholarly professors. In between are thousands of words for students, business people, homemakers, doctors, truck drivers, retired people… everyone!

FreeRice automatically adjusts to your level of vocabulary. It starts by giving you words at different levels of difficulty and then, based on how you do, assigns you an approximate starting level. You then determine a more exact level for yourself as you play. When you get a word wrong, you go to an easier level. When you get three words in a row right, you go to a harder level. This one-to-three ratio is best for keeping you at the "outer fringe" of your vocabulary, where learning can take place. There are 50 levels in all, but it is rare for people to get above level 48.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Wikivid - You are going to love this!

I learned about a new video resource today from one of our participants, Chris Putnam. Wikivid! Here's how they describe it:

Wikivid creates video-courses made up of links to free video tutorials from
around the web. During our "alpha" stage, content is limited to software
tutorials only, but the vision is to add video uploads and more. Add your
own video links, edit existing pages, learn, & enjoy! Use this link to
test your video settings.

The videos are short and pretty well planned. They are still in the building stage, so the choices are little bit limited, but still, there is a lot here. For example, what do you want to know about PowerPoint? They seemingly have a video that covers most queries.

Poke around on Wikivid and see if you find anything you can use.

Thanks Chris!
Lee Anne

Thursday, December 06, 2007

FREE - Screencasting Software - Screen-o-Matic

I was reading an eNewsletter I get from the November Learning Group, and one of the topics was on this free screencasting software, Screen-o-matic (gotta love that name), and I felt compelled to share this information with our loyal consortium members. There are several (not free) tools out there to create slick presentations, or screencasts. Here on the Eighth Floor, we use Adobe Captivate. In fact, we teach a rather fun class on using Captivate. (next class is on March 26th)

So, I can hear you saying (we on the Eighth Floor have those sorts of ears) what exactly is a screencast and why is this such popular technology to use in and for the classroom? Here's what the November Learning Group has to say in their article:

Show your students how to become directors, publishers and producers. Help them create authentic, content-rich tutorials for their classmates and audiences
around the world. Screencasting is a quick and easy-to-use tool that can help you
create slick demonstration tutorials in any subject area, using any computer
application. The software allows you to record a movie of what you are doing on
a computer. Along with your movie, you can record voice-over audio to provide a
series of instructions.


No, it is not as slick as Captivate - but did I mention it is free? I played with it a little and found it to be pretty darn easy to create a quick screen cast. Here is my clever first attempt: http://www.screencast-o-matic.com/watch/cil1QELN. I admit that I didn't look at the tutorial as a good learner should, and I am sure that shows! http://www.screencast-o-matic.com/watch/cii3lYtk

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Here are a few of their FAQs:

1. What platforms/browsers are supported?
We're using a Java applet (requires Java 1.5) to do the screen capture and playback so theoretically it should support all major platforms and browsers. That said there are some issues with certain combinations of platforms/browsers. Here is what we've tested on so far:
All Good! - Windows Vista / IE 7.0
All Good! - Windows Vista / Firefox 2.0
All Good! - Windows XP SP2 / IE 6.0
All Good! - Windows XP SP2 / IE 7.0
All Good! - Windows XP SP2 / Firefox 2.0
All Good! - Windows XP SP2 / Opera 9
All Good! - MAC OS X / Safari 2.0.4
All Good! - MAC OS X / Firefox 2.0
Minor Capturing Issues - Linux (Redhat Fadora Core 3) / Firefox 2.0 Please let us know if you use Screencast-O-Matic on any other platform/browser combinations!

2. How much does it cost?
Nothing! It's completely free.

3. Can I export my screencast to flash, quicktime, windows media, etc?
You can export your screencast to quicktime (.mov) format.


4. Can I get better image or audio quality?
The quality of the screen image and audio is reduced since we want to have fast downloads for watching the screencasts. If you'd like to have better quality let us know and we'll work on making that available!

5. What is the max length a screencast can be?
Right now they are limited to 15 minutes each for free hosting.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

For more on screencasting and a quick list of free and not free tools, read Alan November's quick article.

Just Sharin'
Lee Anne

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Wikipedia vs. Britannica?

Do you think Wikipedia, as an encyclopedia, is as accurate and up to date as Britannica? Or, stated another way, is collective knowledge = paid editors?

As I was reviewing material for my class on Wikis tomorrow, I ran across this in an article by Karl Kapp, Embracing Informal Learning: Understanding the tools of informal learning and their impact on organizations. On page 8 he shares this:
The British journal Nature—a reputable scientific journal first published
in 1869—published a peer-reviewed article examining a range of scientific entries in both the Encyclopedia Britannica and Wikipedia through a rigorous peer review process and found few differences in accuracy. "The average science entry in Wikipedia contained around four inaccuracies; Britannica, about three [21]." The researchers found eight serious errors such as misinterpretations of important concepts in 42 reviews, there were four such errors found in each encyclopedia. Additionally, the reviewers found factual errors, omissions or
misleading statements in both. Wikipedia had 162 of these types of errors. The Encyclopedia Britannica had 123.

Essentially, the accuracy of the paper-based encyclopedia created by
paid editors and researchers was about the same as the collective encyclopedia created by visitors to the Wikipedia site—volunteer writers and editors [22] The implication? Collective knowledge is as accurate, reliable and helpful as edited and carefully reviewed knowledge. The openness of Wikipedia and wikis in general
helps to ensure accuracy. When a person browsing the site sees something they believe is wrong, they update it. The openness of the information ensures its accuracy. The concept of freedom of the press taken to the nth degree and it works.

It got me thinking. Am I telling my students to only trust people who are well paid to share information?

Just Sayin'
Lee Anne

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Online Professional Development Opportunities

While it is true that the Eighth Floor is primarily thought of as a technology learning center for educators, there is more to us than may meet the eye. There is an "AND" in there! We are a technology AND learning center for educators.

So, where is the AND, you may be asking? Well, check it out:
http://eighthfloor.org/services.html

We have made available some pretty cool online professional development courses. Most of them have nothing at all to do with technology -- there's the AND. The Eighth Floor, in partnership with Knowledge Delivery Systems (KDS), has put together a customizable list of online professional development courses with our area educators in mind.

Why are YOU interested in these online courses?
1. They are available 24/7/365. (That means over holiday breaks, too)
2. You set your own schedule.
3. KDS has developed a wide variety of timely topics of interest to all educators.
4. While some classes dealing with tech integration are available, that's not the only focus.
5. You get a lot of learning for your dollar.
6. Group rates are available.
7. Proven quality course content.
8. Proven quality online facilitation.
9. We've done all the "leg" work; only the "clicking" is left to you.
10. Your continued professional development is as important to us as it is to you.

Sample Courses:
Classroom Management
Differentiated Instruction
Leadership
Aiding Students with Learning Disabilities
English Language Learners & Cultural Awareness
Teaching Diverse Learners
Preparing Students for High-Stakes Tests
Coaching & Mentoring to Improve Student Learning
Improving Literacy in Secondary Schools
Anger Management & Effective Discipline to Prevent Violence
Hands-On, Discovery-Based Mathematics
(New courses are currently being developed)

Take a moment to look at this PDF that details all the classes and lays out course content:
http://eighthfloor.org/Forms/courses.pdf

If you have any questions at all about these courses or group rates, please feel free to contact
Dr. Lisa Cole at
lcole@eighthfloor.org.

Thanks!

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Even Something Completely Del.icio.us Needs a Backup Plan

If you have taken a Web 2.0 course on the Eighth Floor, then you know how extraordinary I think social bookmarking is and how much I depend on my Delicious account. For nearly three years I have been building a repository of internet resources for our consortium members - and me, of course. Hundreds (plural) of sites on anything from elementary lesson plans to Podcasting tools to YouTube videos that explain skills better than I can. I have been collecting all those resources on my Delicious account. Many of you were part of my Delicious network. We had a great network!

Last week the unthinkable happened. I deleted my account. In the process of deleting a few dummy accounts, I committed a slip of the mouse and deleted my REAL account. I'm sure you all heard my tragic wail of "Nnnoooooooo!" all across the land.

I learned several things from this experience. One, clicking on the back button 50 times, even 1/10th of a second later, won't reverse the action. Two, the people at Delicious can not be suckered into reviving your account by the promise of "a lot of money." And three, I should have backed up my account. The third lesson is the one that really slaps me in the face. Hello! Don’t we all know to back "things" up? Don't we all know to save, save, save, and save even when we haven't done anything worth saving?

So here's the moral of the story, kids. Back it up! Most every Web 2.0 tool can be saved or backed up one way or another. Just do it.

I am beginning the slow and painful process of personal healing and rebuilding my account. If you were part of my network before, I invite you to add me again. I’m still "
lamorris". Yes, I jumped right back on and reclaimed my logon. If you aren't sure what social bookmarking is, watch this video and get out there and create your own account.




Now, if you want to know how to make your new Delicious account dance, come take the Social Bookmarking class on the Eighth Floor.

Happy tagging!

Lee Anne

Monday, October 29, 2007

What About Blogs? - Oct 2007

Welcome to the Eighth Floor class, "What About Blogs."

We thought you might be interested in looking at a few of the blogs we find particularly relevant to education and technology integration. There are thousands and thousands of blogs out there. You will find blogs on any topic, from pet grooming to dissertation research. People of all ages are drawn to blogging as a form of expression.

As a collaboration and communication tool, blogs have found their place in education. Many teachers use them for professional development and continued learning.

Check out the following education/professional development focused blogs:
Webblogg-ed
Moving at the Speed of Creativity
Teachers Teaching Teachers
Blog of Proximal Development
2 Cents Worth
The Good Habits Blog
Blogs on Educational Blogging

Several teachers are using blogs in the classroom as a tool for collaboration and communication. They find that blogging results in much more authentic learning for students.



Here's Room 9's Blog: http://room9nelsoncentral.blogspot.com/

Check out the following education/classroom use blogs:
Mrs. Watts Second Grade Computer Classroom
Miss Baker's Biology Blog
AP English Literature and Composition
English 12
Maybry Online.org - Classroom and Teacher blogs
Applied Science Research Blogs Alan November - Examples in Education
Mrs. Cassidy's Classroom Blog (1st and 2nd Graders)
Blogical Minds

Check out the following education/safety focused postings and articles:
MySpace Education
Change Agency BlogSafety.com
Blogs, Fair Use, and Paying to Play

Blogging Tips and Tricks:
Web Blog Basics
Blogs - Anatomy
Bogs for Learning
Evaluating Blogging
Blogging Best Practices
Top 10 Blog Writing Tips

Being as this is a class about blogging, we think you ought to do a little, well, blogging. (Those of you reading this who are not enrolled in the class, please jump in!) We’d like you to share some of your thoughts or concerns about setting up and using blogs either professionally or in the classroom.
--------------------------------------------------------
Here are some questions to get you started thinking:
- What do you want to know about blogs?
- What do you already know about blogs?
- How do you think you can use blogs?
- How do you see others using blogs?
- What are you concerned about when it comes to blogs?
- What experiences (good or bad) have you already had with blogs?
- How important is digital literacy for our students?
- OR anything else you would like to blog about.
----------------------------------------------------------
YOUR TASK:
Come up with at least one idea for using or creating a blog - it doesn't even have to be "school" related, and post a comment at the bottom of this post. Share any other thoughts you might have. If you can't think of something to "DO" with a blog, then share something you have learned about blogs or blogging.

Post your thoughts as a "comment" by clicking on the “comments” hyperlink at the bottom of this post. You can contribute as “other.” Be sure to include your name somewhere. Read others’ comments and feel free to comment on their comments.

Thanks!
Lee Anne

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Social Bookmarking in Plain English

I love it when I find exactly what I am looking for. Over the last year, the Common Craft Show has created several videos that aid my instruction, both online and face-to-face. They are simple, clear, short, and exactly what I would do if I had the time. So, last night while I was thinking about the Social Bookmarking and RSS class I am teaching this afternoon, I wondered if they had created one for this topic yet. Sure enough!

Lee LeFever really puts social bookmarking in . . . well . . . plain English.





Of course, I have to remind you that we offer classes on social bookmarking. Our next class, Social Bookmarking and RSS: Your Internet Partyline, is October 23, 2007 from 4:15 - 7:15 pm on the Eighth Floor.

Just sharin'

Thanks!
Lee Anne

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Web 2.0 Tools - What Can Bishop Kelley HS Do?

Bishop Kelley High School
Web 2.0: An Introduction

What is Web 2.0?
We are going to get a taste of what Web 2.0 – or as it is also called, the Read/Write Web – is all about. We will explore how you can harness the power of the Read/Write web as a means of constructing new knowledge through conversation, networking, and collaboration.

The following video from the Youville Blog will not only get your head started spinning, but will also get us started talking.


Find more videos like this on Classroom 2.0


Or, what about this one?

The Machine is Us/ing Us.

BLOGS
We thought you might be interested in looking at a few of the blogs we find particularly relevant to education and technology integration. As a collaboration and communication tool, blogs have found their place in education. Many teachers use them for professional development and continued learning.

Check out the following education/professional development focused blogs:
Webblogg-ed
Moving at the Speed of Creativity
Teachers Teaching Teachers
Blog of Proximal Development
2 Cents Worth
The Good Habits Blog

Several teachers are using blogs in the classroom as a tool for collaboration and communication. They find that blogging results in much more authentic learning for students.


Check out the following education/classroom use blogs:
Mrs. Watts Second Grade Computer Classroom
AP English Literature and Composition
English 12
Maybry Online.org - Classroom and Teacher blogs
Applied Science Research Blogs Alan November - Examples in Education
Mrs. Cassidy's Classroom Blog (1st and 2nd Graders)
Blogical Minds

Check out the following student blogs:
Thom Thumb Stuffs
L heure entre chien et loup

Check out the following education/safety focused postings and articles:
MySpace Education
Change Agency BlogSafety.com

Blogging Tips and Tricks:
More Blog Resources Than You Can Read (On Lee Anne's Delicious Account)
Web Blog Basics
Blogs - Anatomy
Blogs for Learning
E
valuating Blogging
B
logging Best Practices

WIKIS
Best Wiki Ever – 8th Floor’s Wiki About Wikis
Wikis in Plain English

PODCASTING
Grammar Girl
Radio Willow Web
Just One More Book
What is Podcasting – Ask A Ninja
Psychology Rap – videocast on YouTube

Other Web 2.0 Tools to Explore
Classroom 2.0 – Kind of like MySpace for Teachers!
TeacherTube
RSS in Plain English


Please Do!
Post your thoughts as a "comment" by clicking on the “comments” hyperlink at the bottom of this blog post. You can contribute as “other or anonymous.” Be sure to include your name somewhere. Read others’ comments and feel free to comment on their comments.

Thanks!
Lee Anne

K12Online Conference Teasers

Participate in the free K12 Online Conference

What a fantastic idea! Teasers. The presenters at the conference have made little teasers to let conference attendees SEE and HEAR what their presentations will cover.

You can find them on the K12Online Conference wiki: http://k12online07.wikispaces.com/Teasers

I saw several I am interested in, for example:
Karen Richardson-- “Crossing the Copyright Boundary in the Digital Age”


Go. Look. See.

Thanks!
Lee Anne

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

K12 Online Conference 2007 - FREE ONLINE Conference

Participate in the free K12 Online Conference

I can't believe I forgot to remind every one about this FREE online conference. If you have attended in the past, you know what a gluttonous, overabundance of resources are shared every day. It is not too late to jump in.

Here is a link to the conference home: http://k12onlineconference.org/
Here is a link to the conference wiki: http://k12online07.wikispaces.com/

"The K-12 Online Conference invites participation from educators around the world interested in innovative ways Web 2.0 tools and technologies can be used to improve learning. This FREE conference is run by volunteers and open to everyone. The 2007 conference theme is “Playing with Boundaries”. This year’s conference begins with a pre-conference keynote the week of October 8, 2007. The following two weeks, October 15-19 and October 22-26, forty presentations will be posted online to the conference blog (this website) for participants to download and view. Live Events in the form of three “Fireside Chats” and a culminating “When Night Falls” event will be announced. Everyone is encouraged to participate in both live events during the conference as well as asynchronous conversations.
More information about podcast channels and conference web feeds is available! "

Hope to see you there!
Lee Anne

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Google Docs in Plain English

If you've participated in a Web 2.0 class on the Eighth Floor with me, then you know what a fan I am of Lee LeFever and the Common Craft Show.

Well, it looks like he's been busy working with Google and has created a quick video in plain English discussing how the average Joe or Josephine can share a variety of documents ONLINE via Google Docs. As usual, he makes it look pretty darn easy.



What a great use of YouTube. I can absolutely see students creating instructional videos just like this one for each other.


Thanks!
Lee Anne

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

ODLA & The Eighth Floor!

Yes Lee Anne! The ODLA conference in November provides such a great opportunity for educators at all levels. Please look for the Eighth Floor staff and say hello...we will be all over the place! If you do not know what we look like then I encourage you to check us out at our web site www.eighthfloor.org
See you there!
Lisa

ODLA Free Conference - Web 2.0 in Education

You know if it is a "good thing" and it is FREE I'm going to share it with you.

The Oklahoma Distance Learning Association
is hosting a FREE conference at OSU - Tulsa this November 5th and 6th focusing on Web 2.0 in Education. The keynote speaker is Wes Fryer, Director of Education Advocacy for AT&T Oklahoma . I'm sure you have heard me mention him many, many times. Check out his blog, Moving at the Speed of Creativity.

Larry Cochran, President of ODLA, shared some of the presentation submissions with us. This list will probably change, but will give you an idea of "what's going on" at the conference and why you should be there.

Presentation submissions are in, and include in no specific order:
1. Camtasia desktop video/audio creation.
2. Free web-based audioconferencing.
3. Podcasting.
4. “Smart” clinical observation system.
5. Negotiating training via Blackboard learning environments.
6. Sprint's WiMAX/2.5 spectrum plans for Oklahoma and national deployment.
7. Web 2.0 best practices.
8. Advanced e-learning development project in a virtual office environment.
9. A team approach to building online web 2.0 courses.
10. Inventing the Future: Safely Empowering Learners in the Read/Write Society (Keynote Address by Wesley Fryer).
11. RSS – What is it good for?
12. Social bookmarking with delicious: It’s about information, collaboration, communication, and access.
13. Digital audio hardware, compression, bit rate vs. quality, software.
14. Animated characters and 3D in course & college communications.
15. Mission possible: Our path to an open source LMS.
16. Unplugging from the commercial software grid: A strategic path.
17. Audacity: A free and powerful audio utility for the web.
18. Two vendor-based presentations are pending.

Looks like a little something for everyone!
Scott and I hope to be both attending and presenting.

See you there!

Thanks,
Lee Anne

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

The Best PowerPoint Advice a Girl Can Get

I know I have shared this hilarious video by Don McMillan with some of you already - I'm just a sharerer! Everybody loves to laugh, right? This guy will make you laugh at other people AND yourself. If you are a PowerPoint user, then you are a PowerPoint loser. He has graphs and bullet points to prove it!

I noticed on the calendar that we have a PowerPoint for the Classroom course coming up on Sept 20th. I'm just sayin', you might want to check it out. This class starts with beginning skills and finishes with some pretty sophisticated tricks. In addition to this day long class, we have several two hour classes throughout the semester in the evenings and on Saturdays.

If you are interested in other resources to help you shed your "PPT Loser" status, we shared some great ones in a previous post on being a PPT Loser. (We've been aware of this problem for some time. )

As always, if you have comments or questions, you know where to find me!

Thanks!
Lee Anne
lamorris@eighthfloor.org

Friday, August 10, 2007

What About Blogs - Vinita August 2007

Welcome to the Eighth Floor class, "What About Blogs."
We thought you might be interested in looking at a few of the blogs we find particularly relevant to education and technology integration. There are thousands and thousands of blogs out there. You will find blogs on any topic, from pet grooming to dissertation research. People of all ages are drawn to blogging as a form of expression. As a collaboration and communication tool, blogs have found their place in education. Many teachers use them for professional development and continued learning.

Check out the following education/professional development focused blogs:
Webblogg-ed
Moving at the Speed of Creativity
Teachers Teaching Teachers
Blog of Proximal Development
2 Cents Worth
The Good Habits Blog

Several teachers are using blogs in the classroom as a tool for collaboration and communication. They find that blogging results in much more authentic learning for students.

Check out the following education/classroom use blogs:
Mrs. Watts Second Grade Computer Classroom
AP English Literature and Composition

English 12
Maybry Online.org - Classroom and Teacher blogs
Applied Science Research Blogs Alan November - Examples in Education
Mrs. Cassidy's Classroom Blog (1st and 2nd Graders)
Blogical Minds

Check out the following education/safety focused postings and articles:
MySpace Education
Change Agency BlogSafety.com

Blogging Tips and Tricks:
Web Blog Basics
Blogs - Anatomy
Bogs for Learning
E
valuating Blogging
B
logging Best Practices

Being as this is a class about blogging, we think you ought to do a little, well, blogging. (Those of you reading this who are not enrolled in the class, please jump in!) We’d like you to share some of your thoughts or concerns about setting up and using blogs either professionally or in the classroom.
--------------------------------------------------------
Here are some questions to get you started thinking:
- What do you want to know about blogs?
- What do you already know about blogs?
- How do you think you can use blogs?
- How do you see others using blogs?
- What are you concerned about when it comes to blogs?
- What experiences (good or bad) have you already had with blogs?
- How important is digital literacy for our students?
- OR anything else you would like to blog about.
----------------------------------------------------------
YOUR TASK:
Come up with at least one idea for using or creating a blog - it doesn't even have to be "school" related, and post a comment at the bottom of this post. Share any other thoughts you might have. If you can't think of something to "DO" with a blog, then share something you have learned about blogs or blogging.

Post your thoughts as a "comment" by clicking on the “comments” hyperlink at the bottom of this post. You can contribute as “other.”

Be sure to include your name somewhere.
Read others’ comments and feel free to comment on their comments.

Thanks!
Lee Anne

Monday, August 06, 2007

Will Wikipedia Last?

I was reading a blog post by George Siemens last week on his Connectivism blog titled Wikipedia and Google: Control vs. Emergence, and in light of the many, many conversations I've had this summer with Eighth Floor participants regarding the integrity of Wikipedia, I shared the blog post with several people in recent classes. One participant, Dana Sterling, wrote back. I love her passion, and you will too. I've been bugging her to start a blog, maybe if I share her comments here, she will be inspired!


The issue is kind of beside the one this writer is getting at. Academics worry that people are using Wikipedia and not understanding the quick and dirty, amateurish nature of the entries. This is where Britannica differs from Wikipedia. With ritannica, the entries are vetted and peer reviewed ahead of time. Like traditional academic journals and the journalism publications. Same editing and verification process, just taken to the web.

With Wikipedia, that process happens out in the open, in real time, in a kind of democratic way. That appeals to the grass roots activist, mistrustful of the mass media reader. I'm sure you have seen the student journalist criticism when Emory banned Wikipedia as an academic reference.

So I believe Britannica and Wikipedia are more different than he makes it seem. Though it is true that they are alike in that they are allowing the few to make information decisions for the many.

Google is indeed giving you everything, in one big shovel, and not sorting it at all. But he drastically underplays the impact of advertising and the desire to make money on Google searches. The hits are weighted by frequency and by sponsorship. They are not neutral either; far from it. And the China issue -- Google is willing to play ball with the Thought Police in order to make money. This deeply, deeply disturbs me. Yahoo is too.


Journalists and librarians believe in THE EDITOR! Someone has to make sense of the information, weigh it for authority and objectivity. No average consumer or student has the time to do that. It's an incredibly valuable function. It's not sinister. But the media have blown it and the people don't trust us. They think we are biased. We did it to ourselves by embracing opinion journalism instead of clinging to objectivity as a professional value.

See, this was a blog post. I gotta get one for my academic side!
Thanks for the link.

Dana



Dana spent the summer on the Eighth Floor in the Online Learning Series. I find many of her "takes" on things to be interesting, and as I said before, passionate. Dana spent 20 years as a newspaper journalist and TV reporter and now teaches journalism and writing at ORU and TCC.

I appreciate Dana's willingness to share her thoughts. If anyone else is interested in contributing to the Eighth Floor blog, just let me know!

Thanks!
Lee Anne

Monday, July 30, 2007

Can You Subscribe to a YouTuber?

YouTube (and now TeacherTube) are becoming quite popular - wouldn't you say - just a little, maybe? Yeah, yeah, there are definitely some inappropriate "things" to watch for, but there are more way cool "tubes" for kids and teachers.

Recently, one of the Eighth Floor participants, Lynn - The Raving Librarian - said she had a favorite YouTuber that she wanted to subscribe to. She wanted to know how to do that. Subscribing you YouTube is a bit different, but she found a way! Check out her blog at The Raving Librarian. Lynn pointed out that if you subscribe to someone, then you don't have to "go out there" and accidentally run into something you don't want to see. Excellent!!

Thanks, Lynn, for sharing with everyone.

Thanks!
Lee Anne

Monday, July 23, 2007

What About Blogs - July 2007

Welcome to the Eighth Floor class, "What About Blogs."

We thought you might be interested in looking at a few of the blogs we find particularly relevant to education and technology integration. There are thousands and thousands of blogs out there. You will find blogs on any topic, from pet grooming to dissertation research. People of all ages are drawn to blogging as a form of expression. As a collaboration and communication tool, blogs have found their place in education. Many teachers use them for professional development and continued learning.

Check out the following education/professional development focused blogs:
Webblogg-ed
Moving at the Speed of Creativity
Teachers Teaching Teachers

Blog of Proximal Development
2 Cents Worth
The Good Habits Blog

Several teachers are using blogs in the classroom as a tool for collaboration and communication. They find that blogging results in much more authentic learning for students.

Check out the following education/classroom use blogs:
Mrs. Watts Second Grade Computer Classroom
AP English Literature and Composition

English 12
Maybry Online.org - Classroom and Teacher blogs
Applied Science Research Blogs Alan November - Examples in Education
Mrs. Cassidy's Classroom Blog (1st and 2nd Graders)
Blogical Minds

Check out the following education/safety focused postings and articles:
MySpace Education
Change Agency BlogSafety.com

Blogging Tips and Tricks:
Web Blog Basics
Blogs - Anatomy
Bogs for Learning
E
valuating Blogging
B
logging Best Practices

Being as this is a class about blogging, we think you ought to do a little, well, blogging. (Those of you reading this who are not enrolled in the class, please jump in!) We’d like you to share some of your thoughts or concerns about setting up and using blogs either professionally or in the classroom.
--------------------------------------------------------
Here are some questions to get you started thinking:
- What do you want to know about blogs?
- What do you already know about blogs?
- How do you think you can use blogs?
- How do you see others using blogs?
- What are you concerned about when it comes to blogs?
- What experiences (good or bad) have you already had with blogs?
- How important is digital literacy for our students?
- OR anything else you would like to blog about.
----------------------------------------------------------
YOUR TASK: Come up with at least one idea for using or creating a blog - it doesn't even have to be "school" related, and post a comment at the bottom of this post. Share any other thoughts you might have. If you can't think of something to "DO" with a blog, then share something you have learned about blogs or blogging. Post your thoughts as a "comment" by clicking on the “comments” hyperlink at the bottom of this posting. You can contribute as “other.” Be sure to include your name somewhere. Read others’ comments and feel free to comment on their comments.

Thanks!
Lee Anne

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

LeeAnne's podcast

Give it a listen!

Podomatic for Audiocasting




Enjoy! -- LeeAnne Morris

Monday, June 25, 2007

VoiceThread WOW!

I've been playing with a wild new Web 2.0 tool.

VoiceThread

Check it out.




Let me know what you think.

Thanks!
Lee Anne

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Classroom 2.0 - MySpace for Teachers!

Okay, now we're talking about some social networking I can relate to!

Classroom 2.0 is kind of like MySpace for teachers. (actual link: http://www.classroom20.com/ ) I'm not sure how else to describe it. Here's how they describe it.

Welcome to www.Classroom20.com, the social networking site devoted to those interested in the practical application of computer technology (especially Web 2.0) in the classroom and in their own professional development. Especially we hope that those who feel they are "beginners" will find this a comfortable place to start being a part of the community dialog and to learn more.
I have been playing with it and have been impressed by the friendliness and fullness of the site. At first it seems there is TOO much stuff going on, but after you get use to where everything is, it's great.

I have started discussions to find tools and resources for Eighth Floor classes and have come across some great ones that you will certainly see pop-up in future classes.

I invite you to "be my friend" : http://www.classroom20.com/profile/lamorris.

They also have a college only version: http://college2.ning.com/
I invite you to be my friend there, too: http://college2.ning.com/profile/lamorris

Let me know what you think.

Thanks!
Lee Anne

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

FREE - K12 Online Conference

I wanted to share a great conference for K-12 educators.

It is free! It is online! You don't have to travel!

Announcing the second annual “K12 Online” conference for teachers,
administrators and educators around the world interested in the use of Web 2.0
tools in classrooms and professional practice! This year’s conference is
scheduled to be held over two weeks, October 15-19 and October 22-26 of 2007,
and will include a preconference keynote during the week of October 8. This
year’s conference theme is “Playing with Boundaries.” A call for proposals is
below. . . . .
http://k12onlineconference.org/

See you there.
Lee Anne

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

To Copyright or To Copyleft - Is That the Question?

Recently, Lisa (our "fab" new leader on the 8th Floor) and I had an interesting conversation about the difference between copyright (which we all know and pretend to understand) and copyleft (which is kind of an uncomfortable perspective for some of us).

The Internet and, perhaps even more so, Web 2.0 tools have changed the way information is "shared." Most people, especially students, feel that if it's on the web, it's free. Well no, it's not that easy, but it also doesn't have to be that hard. We can still maintain control over our material by giving over control of our material. You choose!

Creative Commons is a popular site for designing your own level of "rights reserved" on the material you put on the web. For many of us, it's not a question of whether we are willing to share our material. Let's face it; as educators, isn't that the business we are in? The question is, what do we want to allow others to do with our material? Again, you choose!

There has been quite a bit of chatter regarding the use of copyleft as opposed to copyright when it comes to online and education. Unfortunately, confusingly, the same old rules don't seem to apply. I am both excited by the new attitude of real sharing, and also frustrated by having to understand new, undulating rules.


If you have any insights or comments, we'd love to hear them.

Thanks!
Lee Anne

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Subscribe to the Eighth Floor Blog

Did you know that you can "subscribe" to our blog? What that means is that each time we post something on our blog, it comes to you. Think how much time this will save you! Instead of checking our blog everyday for a new post (you are all doing that, right?), now you can sit at your computer and each time I make a post, it arrives at your computer kind of like your mail arrives at your door.

I can hear you asking, "How do I make this wonderful thing happen, Lee Anne?" It's easier than you think. Not surprisingly, w
e explain the very simple process in our class, Social Bookmarking: Your Internet Partyline. We cover many other exciting skills, but subscribing to blogs and newsfeeds is one of our topics. If you want to start with a clear and simple explanation, check out this short movie, RSS in Plain English. This is a great little movie created by Lee Lefever of the CommonCraft Show. (Check out the site: http://blip.tv/users/view/leelefever.)

Take the class!

Social Bookmarking: Your Internet Partyline

  • May 2, 2007 1:00 - 4:00 pm
  • July 26, 2007 1:00 - 4:00 pm

If you have questions, just email me. It's that easy!

Thanks!
Lee Anne

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

What About Blogs? - April 2007

Welcome to the Eighth Floor class, "What About Blogs."

We thought you might be interested in looking at a few of the blogs we find particularly relevant to education and technology integration. There are thousands and thousands of blogs out there. You will find blogs on any topic, from pet grooming to dissertation research. People of all ages are drawn to blogging as a form of expression. As a collaboration and communication tool, blogs have found their place in education. Many teachers use them for professional development and continued learning.

Check out the following education/professional development focused blogs:
Webblogg-ed
Moving at the Speed of Creativity
Teachers Teaching Teachers
Blog of Proximal Development
2 Cents Worth

Several teachers are using blogs in the classroom as a tool for collaboration and communication. They find that blogging results in much more authentic learning for students.

Check out the following education/classroom use blogs:
Mrs. Watts Second Grade Computer Classroom
SAS China
AP English Literature and Composition
English 12
Maybry Online.org - Classroom and Teacher blogs
Applied Science Research Blogs
Alan November - Examples in Education

Mrs. Cassidy's Classroom Blog (1st and 2nd Graders)
Blogical Minds

Check out the following education/safety focused postings and articles:
MySpace Education
Change Agency
BlogSafety.com

Blogging Tips and Tricks:
Web Blog Basics
Blogs - Anatomy
Blogs for Learning
Evaluating Blogging
logging Best Practices

Being as this is a class about blogging, we think you ought to do a little, well, blogging. (Those of you reading this who are not enrolled in the class, please jump in!) We’d like you to share some of your thoughts or concerns about setting up and using blogs either professionally or in the classroom.
--------------------------------------------------------
Here are some questions to get you started thinking:
- What do you want to know about blogs?
- What do you already know about blogs?
- How do you think you can use blogs?
- How do you see others using blogs?
- What are you concerned about when it comes to blogs?
- What experiences (good or bad) have you already had with blogs?
- How important is digital literacy for our students?
- OR anything else you would like to blog about.
----------------------------------------------------------

YOUR TASK:

Come up with at least one idea for using or creating a blog - it doesn't even have to be "school" related, and post a comment at the bottom of this post. Share any other thoughts you might have. If you can't think of something to "DO" with a blog, then share something you have learned about blogs or blogging.

Post your thoughts as a "comment" by clicking on the “comments” hyperlink at the bottom of this posting. You can contribute as “other.” Be sure to include your name somewhere. Read others’ comments and feel free to comment on their comments.

Thanks!
Lee Anne

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

PBwiki is Giving Away Free "Stuff" that YOU Want!

Go straight to their wiki and check it out.

You can get three Premium Gold wiki accounts (worth $750) for you and to share!

----------------------------------------------------------

PBwiki Presenter Packs

If you're giving a presentation about PBwiki or wikis in general, we're thrilled to offer our PBwiki Presenter Packs to you--for free.

They include:
A PBwiki shirt for you (
pick your favorite)
An easy-to-read PDF overview of PBwiki to hand out to your audience ("What's a wiki?" "Can I see some samples?" "What about privacy?"). We'll even reimburse your printing costs.
A Powerpoint with pictures of real people/students using PBwiki.
3 FREE Premium Gold wikis. Keep one for yourself and give the other two away to your audience. (Total value: $750.00.)

To get your PBwiki Presenter Pack, email
emily@pbwiki.com. Please include the location where you'll be speaking, the date, your choice of t-shirt, and a mailing address to send the shirts.
------------------------------------------------

Have fun!
Lee Anne


Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Definition Bubbles Without Leaving your Page?

Answers.com has come up with some fairly cool stuff over the years. I love the trivia quiz bubble that we have on the 8th Floor Wiki. Here's something new that you may find useful for your blog, wiki, or website. They describe it best:

AnswerTips
AnswerTipsTM are small information bubbles that define any word when double-clicked. An AnswerTips-enabled site or blog means visitors get fast facts on 4 million topics provided by Answers.com when they double-click on any word, without opening a new browser or following outbound links. AnswerTips deliver instant definitions, explanations and facts including biographies, tech terms, geography, pop culture and much more.

It looks to be fairly easy to put on your site. If you use it, let us know what you think.

Just Sharin'
Lee Anne

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

What About Blogs? - March 2007

Welcome to the Eighth Floor class, "What About Blogs."

We thought you might be interested in looking at a few of the blogs we find particularly relevant to education and technology integration.

There are thousands and thousands of blogs out there. You will find blogs on any topic, from pet grooming to dissertation research. People of all ages are drawn to blogging as a form of expression. As a collaboration and communication tool, blogs are finding their place in education. Many teachers use them for professional development and continued learning.

Check out the following education/professional development focused blogs:

Webblogg-ed
Moving at the Speed of Creativity
Teachers Teaching Teachers
Blog of Proximal Development
2 Cents Worth

Several teachers are using blogs in the classroom as a tool for collaboration and communication. They find that blogging results in much more authentic learning for students.


Check out the following education/classroom use blogs:

Mrs. Watts Second Grade Computer Classroom
SAS China AP English Literature and Composition
English 12
Maybry Online.org - Classroom and Teacher blogs
Applied Science Research Blogs
Alan November - Examples in Education
Mrs. Cassidy's Classroom Blog (1st and 2nd Graders)
Blogical Minds

Check out the following education/safety focused postings and articles:

MySpace Education
Change Agency
BlogSafety.com

Blogging Tips and Tricks:

Web Blog Basics
Blogs - Anatomy
Blogs for Learning
Evaluating Blogging
logging Best Practices

Being as this is a class about blogging, we think you ought to do a little, well, blogging. (Those of you reading this who are not enrolled in the class, please jump in!) We’d like you to share some of your thoughts or concerns about setting up and using blogs either professionally or in the classroom.
----------------------------------------------------------------
Here are some questions to get you started thinking:
- What do you want to know about blogs?
- What do you already know about blogs?
- How do you think you can use blogs?
- How do you see others using blogs?
- What are you concerned about when it comes to blogs?
- What experiences (good or bad) have you already had with blogs?
- How important is digital literacy for our students?
- OR anything else you would like to blog about.
------------------------------------------------------------------
YOUR TASK:

Come up with at least one idea for using or creating a blog - it doesn't even have to be "school" related, and post a comment at the bottom of this post. Share any other thoughts you might have. If you can't think of something to "DO" with a blog, then share something you have learned about blogs or blogging.

Post your thoughts as a "comment" by clicking on the “comments” hyperlink at the bottom of this posting. You can contribute as “other.” Be sure to include your name somewhere. Read others’ comments and feel free to comment on their comments.

Thanks!
Lee Anne