Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Talking Bloom's

It is said a lot that integrating technology should not be a focus on the tool, and Blabberize is a great example for that. While this talking picture creator might seem like a bunch of tomfoolery, there can be some educational applications for using it, as this history teacher and this math teacher did. What are some ideas you have for how your students could use Blabberize in their learning?

Monday, November 1, 2010


Sample Animoto for the book Switch by Chip Heath and Dan Heath

Create your own video slideshow at

Screencast for how to Post your animoto to your lit circle blog and for how to upload your animoto into the D2L system.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Book Cover Image--Example from Switch by Chip Heath and Dan Heath

Here is an example for how to post your book cover image to your lit circle blog. First, you'll need to be a member of the blog--these invitations will come to you via email as soon as the blogs are ready. They can't be created until everyone has listed their book choice in the Google sheet. Our D2L survey had some technical difficulties--thank you to everyone for checking the Google sheet and re-entering your book choice if needed!

Once you are in your group blog, simply click on New Post

and you will get a little window like this one.

Here you can insert your image by clicking on the little photo icon and enter your reason for selecting your image in the text box:

I chose this image because in the book one of the main concepts is having a BHAG--big hairy audacious goal. I like the play on words of making this sound like a bag, and I thought this picture was eye catching and funny.

Finally, click on the Publish Post button at the bottom of the window. You will also need to upload your image to the D2L drop box. Instructions for that can be found in the Discuss>Coffee Shop>Help! discussion section.
If you have any questions, please contact Debbie O'Doan, the Lit Circles Facilitator. Have fun!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Where can I get my book?

Now that you've decided which book you want to read...or are at least willing to read for the sake of the course, it's time to gain access to the book. I say "gain access" because there is no mandate for everyone to purchase the books--if you are able to borrow one from a friend or a library, by all means do so. We also encourage the buddy system if you know someone else taking the course and want to share a book.

The books can all be purchased online, either at Amazon from the list to the right, or from a number of other online resellers such as Borders, Barnes & Noble, eBay, etc. If you happen to be at an actual bricks and mortar bookstore, you should find most of these books in the Business or Marketing areas of the store rather than in the Education section, though you might want to call ahead before making a special trip, to make sure they are in stock.

The reading assignments don't begin until Unit 4, so you should have a couple of weeks to ensure delivery of your book from wherever you decide to get it. If you have any trouble finding a copy, please contact your course facilitator.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Which book should I read?

Choosing a book to read is sometimes an easy thing, as in the case of the next Harry Potter book or anything that Malcolm Gladwell puts to press. Choosing a book from a list that somebody else put together though, especially if none of the titles or authors are familiar, can be a bit more daunting.
That's why we created the booklist for this course. We wanted to give you some choice rather than just assigning a single text, but we wanted to avoid the decision paralysis that can accompany too much choice. So how did we create this list?
First, at least one of us has read each of the books on the list, and found them to be
interesting and relevant to 21st century teaching and learning. We may not agree with all of the points made by each of the authors, but we did agree that these perspectives are thought-provoking and worthy of conversation.
Next, we took into account the accessibility (easy to find or perhaps borrow or maybe
even pull off your own bookshelf), the possible cost (all are between $10-$20), and the length of the book (right around 250-275 pages). A number of other very relevant and interesting books were cut from the list due to being expensive or a bit wordy (for the purpose of this course, anyway).
And so, here it is. The list is in random order, so there is no preference or ranking indicated. We hope you enjoy the literature circle experience!

New and Emerging Technologies for Schools (NET4S) Book List
Participants should choose one of these books to read during the New and
Emerging Technologies course and should gain access to the text by week three. During the course, participants will engage in literature circles based on their text selection.

The Dumbest Generation by Mark Bauerlein
Out of Our Minds by Ken Robinson

Disrupting Class by Clayton M. Christensen, Curtis W. Johnson, and Michael B. Horn

A Whole New Mind by Daniel H. Pink

The Global Achievement Gap by Tony Wagner

21st Century Skills by Bernie Trilling, Charles Fadel

Why Don't Students Like School? by Daniel T. Willingham