Saturday, October 24, 2009

# 16 - Stay informed!

That was easy! Have subscribed to some blogs. Will have to give it a little time to see if it is really worthwhile...

# 15 - RSS feeds

Brilliant idea! What a fantastic way to keep up-to-date. Great way for me to help staff source current info on topics they are doing in class. And great for me too! Love accessing new book reviews as they appear, rather than when I finally get time to hunt all over for them. Easy to update and manage too.

# 14 - Facebook


I now have a Facebook account and apparently a couple of friends. As always, no good in my teaching situation - but great for gossiping with staff away from the open ears of students!

Not personally my thing - maybe I'm more anti-social than I thought... but I can see how it has a lot of use for other people. (maybe if I go back to studying next year it might make a difference, if my kids were older) I liked the Facebook interface much more than MySpace. If I WAS going to get into this I would definitely go for Facebook.

# 13 - MySpace

Again, I can see that in a public access situation, like a public library, MySpace could be a great way to encourage interaction between staff and patrons. However, yet again, as a primary school TL the security rules this out as a tool for use in school. Was fun to look around and play though!

my boy...

my boy...
my boy...,
originally uploaded by cenni3.
the view from behind

# 12 - Flickr

Have linked my account to my blog. Thank you for the clear instructions - although Flickr is pretty clear too! Easy to use.

Maybe I'm a little over-protective, but even with all the security in place, I still don't feel comfortable about uploading photos of my family, especially my kids as they are too young to give consent! So hopefully you are enjoying the wonderful view of the back of my boy's head...

Saturday, October 3, 2009

# 11: Library Thing

What a wonderful way to spend an hour (or 3!)...

I could spend many hours adding in all of my own books, and if I even began to include books I've read in the past...

This would be fantastic to use at school to showcase new books for students and to help both students and staff to find titles in their areas of interest. I really like the recommendations, reviews and statistics areas - I hadn't realised that I was such a fan of female science/fiction authors! Would also be great way to communicate about resources with our local TL network.

I have also learned through this how to insert a widget into my blog - another new skill for me and one that will be very useful!

# 10: Online image generators

Could play with these for hours... (and already have!)

Examples are on this page. There are just so many available - I've been playing around with them and sending links through to colleagues to some of them for about 3 weeks now - seems somewhat addictive...

#9: Explore virtual worlds

So much to do... As someone who plays games like Oblivion and The Sims - on my own consoles without internet connectivity - these really feel like an extension of them... however I still prefer playing in my own worlds where I have complete control!

While I can see that many people find joining in online games fun and use it as a way to create dialogues with people from all over the world (I have colleagues who play WoW, I'm not so sure that there are a lot of valuable educational applications, particualrly within my scope as a primary school teacher-librarian. The security risks are just too high.

I guess there are some uses in a tertiary education environment - but is it really necessary when there are so many other information delivery/collaborative formats readily available? Surely the temptation to explore other areas within a virtual world reduces its effectiveness as an educational tool...

I would be very concerned about

# 8: iGoogle

Ok, I really like this too, but I have a lot of difficulty accessing many of the gadgets as the EQ filtering service has most of them blocked... will have to wait until I can get onto my home internet service - at least I CAN move between computers and still access the same materials thanks to Google!

This does however make using this within a school context difficult...

Google looks like a fun place to work... not sure how much actual work I'd get done with all the fun stuff around though!

# 7: Google Books

WOW! I love it! Is it sad to realise that I've actually found myself here before when searching for books for staff at school and just didn't actually know it?

I love that you can search for a title and a whole range of other information relating to it becomes instantly available... other titles by the same author, reviews, texts and websites that refer to the title, other books on the same themes, as well as purchasing and borrowing options - what a wonderful way to source books for a school library! This just made a big part of my job a lot easier...

# 6: Google Maps

Have used this a bit before - including locating the Townsville airport and sending my husband directions via SMS to the beach when he was up there for the airshow last week!

I've also used it to view accomodation locations in unfamiliar cities - Sydney, Adelaide, and some places in New Zealand. As we quite often use public transport in major cities and travel with 2 small children, we always look for accomodation that is easy to access with a pram (helps to see where stairs or really big hills are!) and close to rail/bus routes - google maps has been wonderful to use for this.

I love that you can see map, satellite and terrain formats in one place (how much better than a street directory!) and that you can zoom in & out to see the surrounding area (no flipping between six different UBD pages). I also really like the 'get directions' feature - have used this many times too.

Haven't seen before though - very similar and easy to use.

# 5: Google Docs

Can't access this through EQ computers... is blocked by the department filter. Will get back to it after the kids are in bed and I can use the home computer...

# 4: Web 2.0

It's been a while since I got around to working on this - school holidays are great! But now that the beginning of a new term is looming... I need to get something done here before I get snowed under again!

So basically it seems that web 2.0 is a term that represents the evolution of the internet from a static information source to a more interactive information sharing community, rather than simply reading/observing data put up by one person, others are now able to contribute their own thoughts, opinions, understasndings in response to that data.

Is it just me, or does this mirror the movement in education from a direct teaching (chalk & talk) method to a constructivist approach?