Monday, April 28, 2008

Safe, Free Email & Blogs

Safely connect, collaborate and learn using protected email and blog solutions for schools and districts.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Cool Podcasting Tool

Apparently there is an inexpensive handy little tool called a digital voice recorder that you can hook up right to your iPod and create a podcast on the fly. Here's a link. Okay, so maybe you all have had one for ages, but the ease and portability of this neat gadget really struck me for recording ideas or documenting student learning or a hundred other great ideas.

What ideas do you have for including podcasts in your classrooms and schools?

Partnership for 21st Century Skills

Today's wealth is generated by new ideas. Teaching and learning 21st century skills are important to our country's future economy. Critical thinking, I.T., health and wellness, collaboration, innovation, personal financial responsibilitiy and the skills and content areas will be growing in importance in the next five years. Critical thinking appeared as the top deficiency when hiring high school students. Written communication and leadership were also among the top five.

21st century learning is pushing students intellectually. Core subjects will always be critical and focuses should be on life and career skills, learning and innovation skills and information, media and technology skills. Conversations among all of these areas should be collectively focused on the big picture. Learning and innovation skills are the hardest to get to and the hardest to assess but they are exactly what our country needs to compete in the global economy. Educators need to see the connection between what they are doing in the classroom and what students will be doing when they become economically independent.

The Partnership for 21st Century Skills encourages schools, districts and states to advocate fo the infusion of 21st century skills into education and provides tools and resources. See

Monday, April 7, 2008

Teaching and Learning Through Podcasting

Pete Markham from Apple, Inc demonstrated the use of iTunes, iTunes U, GarageBand, and iWeb. It was fun to be in this session as we learned how easy it was to create a podcast with voice, music, and pictures. After this session I truly believe I can create and publish a podcast!

For more information go to: It is definitely worth a look!

Opening Session of TIE 2008

Was anyone else surprised that a TECHNOLOGY conference would have so many "squiggles" in the audience? This was one of Pat McGill's "psychogeometrics" categories which proved to be a light opener for TIE 2008. Now I'm wondering...are school technology folks more people-oriented than your average techie types? I think so, or they wouldn't be in schools at all. It was fun to start the conference with some chuckles....

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Social Networking for Graduates

A very interesting conversation on the listserv got me thinking about how schools could be using social networks to keep in touch with alumni, which is especially important when collecting data or implementing fundraising campaigns with graduates. The success of MySpace and Facebook is based on the fact that we are social creatures, we like to connect with other humans. But we especially like to connect with other humans who have shared an experience with us--like high school, or college, or that study trip to England, or whatever.

This blog had some interesting comments, and this news article had an interesting perspective, and this blog had both interesting stats and comments. Most noticeable when I did my internet search was this hosting social networks for alumni is apparently a growing business, as there were numerous results for companies who do this.

Now I need to go update my Facebook profile.