Opportunity to Travel Virtually with Scuba Diver/ ITRT

I KNOW we have some scuba divers out there! Even if you are not, here’s a chance to participate in a really fun “underwater” project from area ITRT, Meg Swecker. Meg is an ITRT for Roanoke County, and an avid scuba diver. She is embarking on a trip to Mexico next Thursday (Nov. 15) to go scuba diving, and is taking students with her “virtually” using Voice Thread! (If you haven’t seen Voice Thread yet, it’s the same website used to create the Galapagos Islands Show I posted about earlier.) Right now her Voice Thread is private, but if you let me know you want to participate (or at least take a look), I will add you to the list to receive an invite to the project. Then you and your students can ask questions about the underwater habitat, and she will do her best to answer through digital pictures and her voice. If this sounds like fun to you, let me know! It is very easy to do…and great for any grade level…even Kindergarten ;) !!

Suggestions from a 5th Grade Teacher

Participate in the free K12 Online Conference
It’s been a crazy week in my personal life, so not much “free time” to really surf the net…and not much time to keep up with K-12 Online Conference. But I’m not worried…that’s the great part…most of the conference (all the presentations, at least) will be there waiting for me when things are more manageable on the home front.

That said, I have had the chance to check in on a couple presentations. This one really caught my attention:

Obstacles to Opportunities Keynote: The Why’s and Wherefore’s

Brian Crosby is a 5th grade teacher in Nevada and a blogger on Learning is Messy. He shows actual projects that he has done with his at risk 5th graders…that’s why I was really drawn to this presentation (click here to see).   It is really worth the watch!!

For a list of other great presentations available through the K12 Online Conference, click here. Pay no attention to dates….once the link is posted, most of these presentations will be available whenever you have the time to watch/listen. There are a few live events…but these too will be archived so you can watch later.

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K-12 Online Conference

The “K12 Online Conference” is for teachers, administrators and educators around the world interested in the use of Web 2.0 tools in classrooms and professional practice! The 2007 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. The conference theme is “Playing with Boundaries.”

Anyone interested in participating together?

Animoto (Quick and Easy Video from Pics)

I think Pam Elgin first bookmarked this awesome easy-to-use site, Animoto, that creates very cool looking videos from a group of pictures. I tried it out today with a some pictures I scanned (but digital pictures would be even easier) and was very impressed at Animoto’s easy of use! Try it out for yourself!
[kml_flashembed movie="http://widgets.clearspring.com/o/46928cc51133af17/46ec5a5f327673ce" width="460" height="300" wmode="transparent" /]

About the pictures in this video: One of the big projects I’ve been working on this summer (and probably for the rest of the year) is organizing family pictures and memorabilia from my childhood. My dad remarried this past November, and he recently moved to a home with his new wife. He’s cleaning out his attic, so I’m got the chance to take all my childhood papers, pictures, and other things to my own house. It’s been huge for me…looking back over my life through drawings, writings, report cards, and pictures. I’m so grateful that my parents saved all those things. This video is just a small, small sample of some of the pictures from my childhood.

Invite to my Second Life Home

Thought I’d throw out an invite to my home in Second Life! It is located on Eduisland 3. Pam Elgin and I have set up a spot for educators, especially ITRTs, to meet, chat and explore Second Life…and we’d love to have you join us! But you don’t have to be an ITRT…anyone is welcome!

http://slurl.com/secondlife/Eduisland%203/57/96/23/shirts1We have enjoyed meeting a few ITRTs from surrounding areas so far! I’m sure there are more of you all out there…please come by and visit. Pam has made some great free T-shirts to advertise our calling…and we have started an ITRT group. Second Life would be a great place to explore together…and meet virtually!

Also, if you have a chance to attend NECC (National Educational Computer Conference) this year, either virtually or in real life, you will notice a Second Life presence. While ISTE (International Society for Technology in Education) has maintained headquarters on Eduisland for awhile now, their new island has just been finished in time for this event, and I hope it will be packed! I am so bummed that I will not be attending in Atlanta this year, but I will definitely be participating in Second Life…hope to see you there!

If you want to read more about Second Life, check out Tyna Catteneo’s blog!

End of the Year Ideas!

As the end of the school year draws near, here are some fun technology resources that you might want to use…


(Make sure you try out the websites out on your computer first…and that you sign up ahead of time for an account!)

  • Voice Thread — you can check out a headset/mic from the library and set this up as a station on a classroom computer!
  • Picture Slide Shows with BubbleShare
  • Photostory or Movie Maker
  • Podcasting (let me know if you need me to record)
  • Slide Show or Podcast for the Book Review Blog (East, GWC)
  • Max Show

Ideas for using the resources:

  • advice for next year’s group.
  • what we’ve learned
  • memories
  • look back at the year in pictures
  • summer reading suggestions or “the best book I’ve read this year”

Post projects on your web page (or I will put them on the school page), post links on schoolnotes, or save them to show next years’ kids as an introduction to your class.

Shift Happens

This is interesting….a remake of Karl Fisch’s famous slide show by Jeff Brenman. He won SlideShare’s World’s Best Presentation Contest.

[slideshare id=33834&doc=shift-happens-23665&w=425]

Karl Fisch gave Jeff permission to remake the slide show for the contest…the final product is awesome. That just shows what collaboration and sharing can produce…what a great example to set, Karl, and way to go Jeff!

Teacher Tube

You might have heard of You Tube or Google Video. If you have been reading this blog, you’ve seen some examples of videos from those sites. There is another video source for teachers out there: TeacherTube.  The good news is that Teacher Tube is directed at teachers, which means that most of the content there should be appropriate for teachers. The one drawback is that Teacher Tube has yet to find a way to interface neatly with edublogs (like You Tube and Google Video) but some other sites will allow you to embed the video directly in your page.  Click here to see a list of some of my favorites.