Friday, March 07, 2008

Google has a Blog for YOU

Hey HEY Hey!

Did you know? Google has a blog for educators with ideas to help teachers and students thrive in the 21st century. It's called the Infinite Thinking Machine. Sure wish I had thought of that name. I suppose if I were that clever I would be working for Google - vicious circle.

Lee Anne

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Can a Blog be a Primary Source?

I subscribe to several blogs, and I try my best to read them with some dedication. Some of the blogs I read are written by past students, and one in particular, by a recent Eighth Floor scholar and graduate of the Online Learning Series, Dana Sterling. Her blog is called, SterlingLikeSilver, So, okay, great blog, and it’s just like her: smart, energetic, and insightful.

In a recent post,
We're only as good as our sources, Dana discusses the idea of blogging – more specifically, what is it and its value. Her discussion has to do with blogs and their place in journalism. For example,

“There are some stories that are best told via TV. But. As a viewer, I didn't want Diane Sawyer to show me what happened after the tsunami in Indonesia. I wanted the reporter to step out of the frame and let the people that were actually there when it happened speak to me. I didn't want Ms. Sawyer's over-interpreted version of the event, or her emotional response. I wanted her sources.”
In the world of education, this becomes an even bigger question than that of style or palatability. I think Dana is taking us here - certainly challenging us to think about it. Right now, not in the future, now, educators are tasked with being AND helping our students become critical filters of information. (Explore this “filter” idea more in Will Richardson’s post “
A Publish Then Filter World”). There are a lot of new resources out there, and not all of them come from “traditional” sources. How do we deal with that?

So, here’s an essential question: How DO you deal with these non-traditional sources? Would you allow or even encourage your students to use a blog as a primary source? What about a secondary source? What are your “filters”?

Lee Anne