Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Adding Power Points to a Blog

A few days ago I followed directions suggested by participants in the Yahoo group Learning with Computers to set up an Ellg account to upload a Power Point presentation for the purposes of later uploading it to my blog. After that I tried several times unsuccessfully to add the URL for the Power Point to the template of this blog.

Then I used SnipURL (a great little program that allows you to shorten long URLs and assign them names) to shorten the original URL of the presentation. For some reason, the template accepted this and I have now successfully uploaded the presentation.

Networking combined with some experimentation can work wonders!

Monday, October 02, 2006

Expert bloggers

My students recently created their own blogs following the directions in their text and seem quite interested in using blogs in their future teaching.  I asked them to create a blogroll of links to either other students’ blogs or blogs of well-known bloggers.

Practically no one chose the well-known bloggers and that disappointed me because I was hoping that this would be a good way to expose the students to the blogs of experts in the field.  Perhaps they will become familiar with these authors when they do their rss feeds, but if not, the next time I teach a similar course, I will require that they link for expert blogs.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

How-To Videos

In reading my rss feeds at Bloglines, I found a delightful site VideoDo in a posting by Alan Levine on his CogDogBlog. This site shows short videos on how-to-do things and allows users to contribute videos to the site. I could immediately see the applicability of this in the classroom as students could make videos when learning process writing in Language Arts or in a second language classroom. Although I don't have a video camera yet, I may try out this tool with my webcam to see what happens. Maybe I could demonstrate how to play a simple rhythm on a dejembe!

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Blogs, Wikis, Podcasts...

I am in the middle of reading Will Richardson's new book, Blogs, Wikis, Podcasts, and Other Powerful Web Tools for Classrooms. This book is the perfect text for courses I teach for pre-service teachers on educational uses of the Internet. I had previously used a compiliation of recent articles available on the web as the readings and how-to material for the courses, but Will has made my life so much easier. I'll have to tell him so.Each chapter or two in the book covers a web tool. Besides the ones mentioned in the title, he covers RSS and Flickr as well. Will has presented the material in a pedagogically pleasing way and covers the "why" as comprehensively as the "how-to." I really highly recommend that educators who are interested in these topics or teach about these topics check out Will's book.

As I finish reading each chapter, I'm going to try to post additional relevant links about each of the topics because, although Will's book was published in 2006, there are already updates on topics such as podcasting.