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Friday, February 29, 2008

IL-TCE 2008 Thursday

IL-TCE 2008

This is my first blog since 2000, so bear with me. Hopefully the learning curves is less steep these days. I hope to return to activate the links for you.

Conference Coverage was moved to Ning this year. You can find hand-outs as well as a wealth of resources at Ning.

The keynote speaker, (Dan Buettner, Quest Network, Inc.) demonstrated what he has learned by studying “Blue Zones,” which are areas in the world where longevity of the residents is the highest in the world. He discussed their social and dietary habits, which he felt contributed to their living past the age of 100. Most amazing was a 95-year old who was still performing open heart surgery after landscaping his yard. Contributing factors include a plant-based diet, exercise by moving naturally, put loved-ones first, belonging to a religious community, having a sense of purpose and a way to de-stress every day, caloric restriction, a glass or two of wine every day, and creating a personal longevity culture. Why this keynote? He mentioned selling Classroom Connect (which was a great resource!) to Harcourt Brace. Then he formed a group that led to MayaQuest (another great resource!) as well as 16 others. Creating interactive environments like Quest that was led by students and led to exciting worldwide projects, Buettner hopes that emotionally involved students will discover the secrets to healthy living. The resulting curriculum, available free to teachers, is linked to standards. University of Minnesota created a successful program of nutrition to go with the Live Quest, with a weekly data entry. Improvement was noted within four weeks showing decrease in soda consumption and TV viewing and increase in fruits and vegetable and exercise. His book The Blue Zone will be available soon.

Second Life: Craig Cunningham, Meg Ormiston, and Lisa Perez
Second Life is a multi-user environment (MUVE) used for education, as well as other purposes. Its three-dimensional format allows you to create objects. Although it is designed for adults, there is a section for teens that has restrictions to protect them. A school district can create an “island” for their school. Its importance for education is communication and collaboration, representation and stimulation, creativity and artistic expression, scaffolding and professional development. ELVEN is a community for educators and librarians. If you would like to learn more about three-dimensional online communities, you can take one of their workshops. Meg Ormiston described her work in Second Life, including a virtual monthly meeting of librarians. She is also active with Chicago Public Schools and a Second Life project there. Lisa Perez described. There will be a playground at 11:15 and 2:45. Free workshops available from Discovery Education Network, Wed. nights 7-7:30. Lori Abramson will also be doing demos.Real Life is also known as First Life. It seems to be hard to get off of Orientation Island. Once there, do orientation and teleport into mainland. Meet someone who knows you online, they can teleport you in. Search for ISTE, then teleport. Twitter, bloglines also report low rates of participation after registration.

FREE Resources for Educators, Beth Pollock

All information on her Wiki.
1. allows you to collaborate on a document from anywhere.
2. Animoto is a screen capture program that allows you to upload pictures and music to create a video. Free for up to 30-second videos. She made a video of jing. Saves it as a Flash animation.
3. Voicethread is a web site that allows students to record an audio comment related to a picture. Teacher can also go in and comment. Can make it public without browse so grandparents can see it. Must create account. Teacher can create 30 identities.
4. is a web site that also requires a download of client software as well. Also a good collaboration tool.
5. is a filtered email program.
6. Streamcast-o-matic will record video and save as a QuickTime movie.
7. Flickr is an online photo site.
8. Weebly helps students create web sites.

Math Matters, Erin Llewellyn

Three easy ways to add technology to math curriculum: web sites, digital cameras, and software:
1. Web sites: Funbrain, Math Playground, Aunty Math.
2. Digital Cameras: Shapes, Counting/numbers, Time/Elapsed Time, Word Problems, Flash Cards, Picture Graphs (teachers' cars), Fact Families (kids hold numbers and move around in equation), Number Sentences using manipulatives, Ordinal Numbers with a picture of a line of kids, Fractions, Symmetry, the power of one picture: use one picture for many different concepts
3. Software: patterning, number sentences, shapes, fractions
4. Open Source software: Tux Paint is like KidPix without as many features. Type open source tool into search engine.

Best Buy Grants: July 1st, go to web page, small button at bottom, community relations, answer 4 questions ($2000), make learning fun. (She recommends Ed Gorney & GPS systems, Friday morning at conference).

Tagging, Dr. Hank Thiele

Tagging is putting a label on a bookmark or file to describe it so other users may access it. It is used on, Flickr, Technorati, Quintura (which has a child-centered section, named Quintura Kids), Furl, and blogs. Tag clouds group tags that can be used to encourage students to analyze. Presidential Speeches Tag Clouds was examined to show the difference between the two inaugural addresses of George Bush. Students could be asked to analyze why they are different. Tag Cloud analyzed the content of the IL-TCE web site. Another web site, Many Eyes, combined text and data to show visually larger print for large countries. In addition to a visual representation of a word, it allows you to make a hierarchical chart from a search. You can post student work for analysis if you are careful not to put any identifiers in or with it. Jonathan Harris created a site called Universe that is looking for words that are the same, even if they are not formatted. Set up artistically as a universe, one constellation for Bush was President.