Archive for the 'Read/Write Web' Category

I’ve Been Busy Part II: The k12 Online Conference

Tuesday, October 24th, 2006

I spent many hours last week recording and editing video!

I am “presenting” three sessions for the k12 Online Conference, which is going on right now. My first session, Blog if You Love Learning is already live. Head on over to see what I hope is a fun and informative overview of blogs in education. I was inspired by former science teacher Alton Brown’s Good Eats and Amanda Congdon‘s Rocketboom (the old Rocketboom), and I used Snapz Pro for the first time, so hopefully I can hold attention for an hour… and then some. I hope you’ll check it out and leave a comment if you watch it. :)

My next presentation will be “Two-Way Teaching” which is a fast paced overview of the read/write web in education – and using these tools for two-way teaching. NOTE: It’s now Wednesday and the link is live!

Then, on Friday, I offer “Wiki While You Work” an overview of, you guessed it, wikis in education. I’ll add this final link when it’s time. :)

I’ve Been Busy Part I: Workshop Wikis

Tuesday, October 24th, 2006

Once again, I’ve been having trouble keeping up the pace of blogging I’d like, but I’ve been busy… even to the point where I’ve also had trouble keeping up the pace I’d like in my doctoral work. :(

However, over the previous two weeks I actually lead (or recorded) 11 different presentations (for various clients), and I’m happy to say that for nearly all of them, I used a wiki to support the face-to-face instruction. The benefit of this is that the participants can access the materials (and links, which are actually clickable, unlike on the handouts), and they can continue to collaborate after the workshop is over. This is not to say that they do, but it’s possible.

Also, the wiki can benefit visitors from elsewhere, who can in turn also contribute to it. With this in mind, I’m sharing all the workshop wiki addresses here. I hope these might be useful to others leading similar workshops, and I hope that some of you might contribute as well.

First of all, I should mention that I was inspired by CUE Lead Learner Burt Lo, who started two wikis to support his upcoming trainings at the CLMS conference in November:

iPod in Education
Digital Camera in Education
(He hasn’t used these yet, but feel free to lurk or contribute!)

For recent face-to-face training sessions, I’ve created these wikis:

iPhoto in Education
Picasa in Education
Premiere Elements in Education
Tablet PC in Education
The Read/Write Web in GATE Education
Internet Awareness and Safety (for Educators and Parents)

And, for the k12 Online Conference, which is going on right now, I’ve created these (which I still need to fully populate with links and materials from the presentations):

Blog if You Love Learning
Two Way Teaching
Wiki While You Work

They only things I presented where I did not use a wiki for support were the AB 430 Administrator workshops. Perhaps that will change soon, if Ted Lai is up for it…

The Read/Write Web in GATE Education

Saturday, October 21st, 2006

So I’m here at UCI today with a group of GATE teachers, asking these three familiar questions (their responses are in italics):

1. What is a blog? A forum or panel for discussion. It’s interactive. You can respond. The word comes from web + log. Online journal or diary.

2. What is the read/write web? Some parts of the web are fixed, and some are in flux – you can add to them. Maybe the web was read-only until recently. Web users used to be more passive… now than can be more active.

3. What do these technologies mean for you and your students? We’re meeting them where they like to be. It increases the time you can interact with your students.

These folks really are GATE teachers… here we go…

Update: Here is a link to the GATE 2.0 wiki I set up to support this presentation.

My Space in MySpace

Saturday, October 14th, 2006

I’m spending a little time in MySpace as I prepare a hands-on workshop for parents. Check out my first blog entry there. Also, pop in and check my profile if you’re interested.

I’m amazed how many of my former students, and former school mates, I’m finding on here… and that are finding me, too! Hopefully I’ll be able to add them all to my friends list. ;)

I’m also working on my k12onlineconference sessions this weekend, so I better get back to it…

Meme Alert: School 2.0

Thursday, October 12th, 2006

In addition to the “Google in Education” and “Video Games” in education trends I saw in the 1212 posts I skimmed and read this morning, I also noted a resurgence of the School 2.0 or School Restructuring meme. Doug Belshaw (who I seem to link to disproportionately often here) asksIs this the future of schools? in reference to an article about an innovative new school being built in Australia.

Meanwhile, Will Richardson (and others) report that the School 2.0 conversation started by the US Department of Education at the NECC conference in July continues. In fact, the plans we saw at the conference are finally available online – and on paper by request. Visit School 2.0 – Join the Conversation to see what the educational technology leaders in this country have in mind. Naturally, there are many Web 2.0 (and ubiquitous computing – and networking) technologies involved, as well as some innovative organizational changes. Again, this is an exciting trend to see.

100 principal blogs in 100 days!

Tuesday, October 10th, 2006

I love the sounds of this project and hope that some of the principals I know and that I’ve trained will jump on bord. Scott McLeod said to share this widely, so I’m posting the message in its entirety here. (And thanks to Mike Lawrence for passing it on.)

From: Scott McLeod
Sent: Tuesday, October 03, 2006 4:51 AM
To: ISTE SIGTC Discussion List
Subject: [sigtc-discussion] 100 principal blogs in 100 days!

Do you know a technology-inclined principal? Or a principal that would like to enhance communication with his or her local community?

The UCEA Center for the Advanced Study of Technology Leadership in Education (CASTLE) has initiated a project to create 100 new principal blogs in 100 days. Blogs are excellent tools for communicating with parents, publicizing school activities, and enhancing community satisfaction. Some superb examples include Meriwether Lewis Elementary and Mabry Middle School (GA).

CASTLE is looking for some principals who want to experiment with this new communication medium. Participants will be provided with a free blog and will receive ongoing support as they integrate their blogs into existing communication strategies. If you know a principal who might be interested, please pass this message along. More information about the Principal Blogging Project is available here:

Please share information about this project widely. Thanks!

Incidentally, if you want to get invovled, visit the Principal Blogging Project Home Page.

The official release of

Thursday, September 21st, 2006

The official release of (Via The Thinking Stick.) Like everyone else in the edublogosphere, I’m pointing to Jeff Utecht’s latest project with his students, The site is hailed as “technology by teens for teens.” It looks as if many students are contributing using pseudonyms, and it seems most posts allow you to click through to the individual student’s blog (of just their posts). They also allow comments, which seem to be threaded. I commented on this recent poll, and discovered that the comments are also moderated by an administrator, who – if I’m reading Jeff’s post right – is one of the students. It will be interesting to see if my comment is geeky enough to get through… or if I’ll be considered too much of an adult to participate. ;)

Threaded Comments for WordPress Blogs

Wednesday, September 20th, 2006

Comment On: Reintroducing Discussion Boards Here is my comment on one of David Warlick’s other recent posts. After reading about his reintroduction of bulletin boards (primarily due to the advantages of threaded discussions over traditional blog comments) it got me thinking… why don’t blogs have threaded comments? A quick Google search later I had learned that there is a plug in for threaded comments on WordPress, which I use. Next time I play with my blog I’m going to try it out. For now, I’m sharing it here:

Brian’s Threaded Comments

K12 Online Blog Goes Live

Tuesday, September 12th, 2006

K12 Online Blog Goes Live (Via A Difference.) This blog is supporting an upcoming online conference for educators interested in Web 2.0 tools. For those of you that are already familiar with blogs, wikis, and the like, join me in submitting a presentation proposal. If these are new technologies (and pedagogies) to you, be sure to attend. Follow the blog for further announcements.

PS. The conference badge now appears in my sidebar.

My Favorite 9/11 Post

Monday, September 11th, 2006

Who Knows What Day It Is? (Via Borderland.) This post by Doug at Boderland is my favorite 9/11 post of the day. There are only ever going to be more and more young people who need to have these conversations and need to have these questions answered. I also wonder how relevant or immediate this day will be to young students. I know that they will live in the world forever changed by 9/11, but I also know how events like Martin Luther King Jr’s death, or JFKs death were vague “history” for me as a kid (and seemed to have happened a long time ago), and yet my parents’ generation remembered them and understood them intimately. Similarly, neither of my parents can remember d-day (both were actually born that week), but to their parents that was a vivid memory. I see this happening now with students like Doug’s – or like my wife Eva’s, who are in kindergarden… most were in the womb on September 11th, 2001. How we tell this story will be every bit as important as what happened, if not more so – from the perspective of our students and children.

I also found Scoble’s post stangely striking. I feel it is a big deal (and a tragedy of sorts) that his blog posts from 2001 are gone. I do back up my blog regularly… and I feel every piece of information (especially historical first hand accounts like Robert’s blog) that we keep is valuable to humanity as a whole… and that each piece that vanishes is a potentially costly loss. The power we have to publish is greatly diminished if the publications lack permanence… or at least staying power. Imagine the value of today’s blogs to future generations of humanity, who will almost certainly have tools to make sense of the volume of information!

Of course, I’m something of an information pack rat, but I think even Robert’s wishing he had his son’s pictures would be justification enough for someone (anyone) having backed them up. I left a comment on Scoble’s post, too.