A great resource passed on to me by Roxann Nys, CESA 7 –
Check out this amazing free online opportunity to learn: http://k12onlineconference.org/
The keynote speaker, Kim Cofino, is definitely worth a listen and I’m sure there will be many other very valuable presentations.
The K-12 Online Conference invites participation from educators around the world interested in innovative ways Web 2.0 tools and technologies can be used to improve learning. This FREE conference is run by volunteers and open to everyone. The 2009 conference theme is “Bridging the Divide.” This year’s conference begins with a pre-conference keynote by classroom teacher and international educator Kim Cofino the week of November 30, 2009. The following two weeks, December 7-11 and December 14-17, over fifty presentations will be posted online to our conference blog and our conference Ning for participants to view, download, and discuss. Live Events in the form of three “Fireside Chats” are listed on the events page of our conference Ning and Facebook fan page, and live events will continue in 2010 through twice-monthly “K-12 Online Echo” webcasts on EdTechTalk. Everyone is encouraged to participate in both live events during and after the conference as well as asynchronous conversations. Over 122 presentations from 2008, 2007, and 2006 are available, along with archived live events. Follow the K12 Online Conference on Twitter and Facebook!
For those of you that are interested…
Jennifer Wagner, a well known Educational Technology Teacher, is hosting the Holiday Card Exchange Project again this year. This project serves as a great way to connect with classrooms all over the world and learn about things like geography, customs, communication, etc.
The project is open to teachers grades PK – 6. Ms. Wagner will team you up with 24 other classrooms to exchange holiday cards.
If you are interested in participating, or would like more information about this project, please visit this site:
If you have any questions, or decide to participate, please let me know!
I have been attempting to create my “PLN” (Professional Learning Network) on Twitter for several months now. When I first began using Twitter, I have to admit, I thought it was ridiculous. I remember thinking, “How in the world is this going to help me become a better teacher???” I tried it for awhile, then quit. I went to the WEMTA Conference last spring and the Twitter buzz was rampant, so I thought, I’m going to give this ONE more shot. Wow…am I glad I did! I can honestly say that Twitter has served as the BEST professional development tool that I’ve ever used! I am amazed at all of the connections that I’ve made with teachers around the world. Last summer, my summer school class Skyped with a teacher from London, and another from Argentina It was amazing! This year, I am mentoring two of Dean Shareski’s pre-service teachers from Canada. Austin and Whitney are giving feedback to my 8th grade students while the kids create a business in our classroom wiki environment. Twitter certainly gives a whole new meaning to the song, “It’s a Small World!” If you are working on developing your PLN (Professional Learning Networks) via Twitter or RSS, it’ll take some work. Sometimes it’s hard to get started and find quality people to “follow.” Here are a couple resources that may help-
http://skypeanauthor.wetpaint.com (Authors willing to Skype with your class)
If you are unfamiliar with Twitter, you may want to watch these tutorial videos–
Ready to set up your Twitter account? Read this first - http://thumannresources.com/2009/11/14/7-steps-to-a-twitter-makeover/ Good luck…and don’t forget to add @jswanski when you begin developing your PLN!!!
Here are some great websites with a TON of resources by grade level. Many of the sites are interactive and would be great for the Smart Board! I wanted to provide all grade levels for you in case you are looking for enrichment or remediation activities.
Kindergarten – http://guest.portaportal.com/ksol
1st grade – http://guest.portaportal.com/1sol
2nd grade – http://guest.portaportal.com/2sol
3rd grade – http://guest.portaportal.com/3sol
4th grade – http://guest.portaportal.com/4sol
5th grade – http://guest.portaportal.com/5sol
On a side note – we have to make sure we make time for fun too! As Christmas approaches, (did I just say Christmas?) here is a “game” that the kids can play on your Smart Board! The kids need to “honk” the reindeer nose to play a tune! http://is.gd/4RSaP It’s great for practicing number recognition, right??? J
What is PhotoStory???
- PhotoStory 3 is a FREE piece of software that allows users to create a show and tell presentation using images. (This is also called Digital Storytelling.) You can also add music and narration to your project to make it come to life!
- Once your project is finished, it can be played with Windows Media Player – which is standard on most computers. (Also a FREE download if you don’t have it.)
- This is a great application for beginners. It is VERY user friendly and simple to use!
- Click HERE for the download page. (You CAN request this software to be put on your classroom computers if you want!!!)
- Click here for a VIDEO tutorial –
- Click HERE for a guided, written tutorial.
How can you use this in your classroom???
- Turn your written stories into powerful videos!
- Have the students bring in, draw, or scan pictures to narrate a story. You can also import TUXPAINT or POWERPOINT images into the story. (Ask me how to do this if you need help!)
- Use this as an extension activity for kids that are always finished early. Let them take their stories to the next level!
- Have each student create a page for the “movie” – and put all of your student pages together in movie form!
- Recap a field trip.
- Have a group of students load your digital pictures onto the computer and into PhotoStory/Movie Maker to narrate your field trip experience.
- Here are more great links with ideas if you want to check them out!
Did you know? It’s never too late to start teaching kids about copyright laws! The “rule” for using music is either 30 seconds or 10% of a song. If you want to avoid all legal liability – you can just use copyright free music. Here is one of my favorite sites to get music from – www.freeplaymusic.com (PhotoStory 3 also gives you the ability to create your own music.) As for pictures off of the Internet – make sure students are citing the source of the pictures as well.
It is SmartBoard Mania in West De Pere! Almost EVERY classroom in our four buildings has a SmartBoard! Kudos to the administration, school board, parent groups, etc. for helping this goal come to life! Here is a little video I made with some pictures of the SmartBoards in use at Westwood Elementary-
Click here for some AMAZING SmartBoard resources – http://technology.usd259.org/resources/whiteboards/smartlessons.htm
This week, our focus was on Microsoft Outlook. We discussed MANY topics – but here are some video tutorials that focus on the big topics we covered.
Creating a email distribution list –
Calendar Features –
Creating a signature –
You can also visit our Technology Department’s wiki page for more tutorial information – http://wdpsd-tech.wikispaces.com/Outlook+2007
Did you know? YouTube is a great place to watch all of those silly wedding dances, but it also provides a GREAT place for tutorials! If you are ever having trouble with anything, head to YouTube to see if there is a tutorial available. In most cases…you’ll find something that will help you!
I will also be updating my blog with all of the Tech Tips that I cover. Please feel free to visit – http://jswanski.wordpress.com In an upcoming Tech Tip – I will show you how to set up your RSS feed so blog updates come to YOU!