Wednesday, September 26, 2007


I have been reading and thinking about Thomas J. Friedman's book The World is Flat. Friedman spends the first few chapters of his book giving examples of ways in which the world has been flattened. In my mind I replaced flattened with the word "connected." If I have learned nothing else over the last 3 months it is that our world can be connected!In my new roles as Keystone Technology Integrator and Classrooms of the Future Coach I have been introduced to a multitude of new concepts and applications. Whenever I have questions, need advice, want to share something new, or get feedback all I have to do is send my request through my twitter feed, skype pals, ichat buds, posts on blogs or wikis and (almost instantly) I am connected!

These web2.0 tools have enabled me to be connected, giving lifelong learning a whole new look! Can you just image the educational implications here!

Friday, September 21, 2007

Classrooms For the Future

This week was an exciting one! Our district was awarded of $360,000 in a state wide grant initiative to bring high schools into the 21st century. We have a technology supervisor who is incredible! She has brought many grants into our district. To make a long story short, I was asked in April if I would consider putting my resume into the state so that I may have an opportunity to apply for the "coach" position that accompanies this grant. As of Tuesday night I have become our district's coach which means that I will have the opportunity to work with our high school teachers to assist them in integrating the technology coming as a result of the grant.

This is an incredible honor for me! In the same breathe it has been one of the toughest weeks in my teaching career. I have spent four weeks with my 3rd graders and feel that I have really connected with them. After sharing the news with them, writing to their parents, and going through a box of tissues, I am packing and getting ready to go to "boot camp" next week. Having spent the day with the long term substitute teacher filling in for me, watching her interact with the children today, I can honestly say this is going to be an incredible year!

An old friend once told me that you don't grow unless you step outside your comfort zone. So, here I go!

Monday, September 17, 2007

Uses for Video iPods in the Classroom

I have been asked recently, "How do you use video iPods in education?" While I have my own uses I thought this would be a good opportunity to do a bit of research. Here, in random order, are some ideas that I found from various sources (sources listed below):
*Share video (purchased from iTunes store or other sources - they have "Schoolhouse Rock" clips!
*Capture and convert streaming video (teachertube...) to share in the classroom.
*Use iPod to hold video that you make with your class.
*Use Apple's iQuiz to create and share quizzes
*Share audiobooks (great for differentiating instruction).
*Creating and sharing podcasts.
*Listen to podcasts found online. (Apple has iTunes U which has some incredible material.)

If you are looking for a more comprehensive list, visit

Other sources:
Apple's resources
iPods in Education

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Sending Text Messages with iChat

I was listening to the MacCast and learned that it is soooo easy to send text messages using iChat on the Mac! All you do is add a person, select AIM acct., enter +1 and the mobile phone number with area code as the person's name, and then you can start sending text messages via iChat! The messages come back to you in iChat. There is a link to click when you want the messages to start going to your phone.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

A Visual Search Engine!

By listening to a podcast (can't remember which one) I heard about a visual search engine, called Page Bull, which I found to be very helpful!