Thursday, October 22, 2009

741.6 Research Projects in the 2.0 World: Sharing the Learning

Typical 4th grade research project - learning about Texas cities.
Typically done? Not on your life!

One of the librarians in my circle who has embraced the 2.0 tools almost longer than anyone I know recently shared her school's version of the "typical" project.
Yes, each student researched a Texas city...each one used typical resources available to them...print and digital. So they had experience accumulating information and using research skills.

The 2.0 finished project - trading cards using the Big Huge Labs site.
The interaction experience - ACTUALLY trading the cards (and some treats courtesy of the librarian)

The assessment - the librarian developed a checklist activity and found out the students really did learn facts about Texas cities...and did it in a fun way!
I am so fortunate to work with librarians (and teachers and school leaders) who recognize that learning CAN be done in interesting and creating ways...with fun thrown in!

Monday, October 5, 2009

027.626 Teens & Libraries: How Do YOU get 'em In?

Over the last few years, I have been involved in lots of discussions about, plans for, and activities on getting teens to "use" our libraries. Most of the librarians in my circle understand that the 1980's version of the library is dead...and hopefully gone!

After all, the kids we work with these days weren't even around to know what we are talking about. Think about how many changes have come into your own life in the 20-25 years.

During the 1990's, the changes were coming faster and in bigger bites. I think we gave librarians and libraries passes who were still lagging behind because change is often difficult and is not cheap to accomplish.

But come on folks, the first decade of the 21st century is coming to a close. If you haven't changed, you MUST do it now. You must look at what libraries are doing to meet the needs of the teens.

Musty and dusty can no longer be the words associated with libraries...especially for teens! Let's try virtual, let's try visual, let's try music and sounds, let's try games, let's try F-U-N!

One of the librarians in my circle who really has grabbed hold of the change needed in working with teens is also so involved in using the 21st century tools that she has provided examples of life in her library these days.

Take a look. What you see is going on in lots of libraries in my circle...maybe not quite like this, but with the same excitement and enthusiasm. If your library doesn't "look" like this, maybe you should pick out an idea or two?

Yes, the videos are a little raw and rough. They were made with a little Flip camera and were made on the fly...with nothing but fun in mind. But the message is clear!

These kids LOVE to come to their library.

Students gather in groups to share the computers or wait patiently for their "turn" to use the Internet for what interests them.
Wii games have their own special little corner in this library. You can see friendly competition over baseball, boxing, and bowling!

But wait...these same kids read plenty of books and spend time looking for just the right one...and just the right reading spot.

And not all the fun and excitement happens on the computer. Traditional board games and card games are available to the teens at appropriate times!

Look at what the kids are doing in this last bit of video. Do you call that "virtual" skateboarding? I have never seen these miniature skateboard parks. Can't wait to see one up close.

Of course, all of this fun and excitement could not happen without the support of the school and the administration. The administration has supported the changes. Teachers help out with duty stations and participate in the fun with the kids. Volunteers have even been enlisted to help with painting and decoration.

O, and the negative side to all of this? Is there one?
SO many kids want to come to the library that the librarian has had to create a schedule for the different grade levels for before school. There were concerns about safety and fire code. It also assures that everyone will have a chance to participate and play.

Don't you wish you had that problem?

Thanks to CL for the loan of her videos and pictures.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

004.09 Did You Know 4.0: Stats about Our Current World

Ok, it is time to be reminded that what we have been doing in the 2.o world is NOT being done in isloation...we are playing and learning and testing and learning and practicing and learning the very things that more and more of the world is doing every day as a part of its normal, everyday world.
Is it a perfect world? No. Is it a totally safe way to do the business of everyday life? No. But neither is the other world!
It will take you a little more than 3 minutes to catch up with the latest and be reminded that it is ok to move forward and think differently, communicate differently, react differently, and most importantly in our little education corner of the world, learn differently!

Enjoy the current update of the wildly popular Shift Happens.

P.S. I'm intrigued by the method used in creating the text strips and some of the graphics. Pretty cool and worth the time as well!

In case the embedded video is blocked in district, here is the link. You should be able to see it through teacher sign-on of your computer.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

028.162 Pura Belpré Awards

Author award:
The Surrender Tree: Poems of Cuba's Struggle for Freedom by Margarita Engle

Illustrator award:
Just In Case, illustrated and written by Yuyi Morales

Here is a video provided by Yuyi Morales about her award. It features Señor Calavera, a character often found in her books.

Invited from Yuyi Morales on Vimeo.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

629.45 Moon Landing Plus One

My hometown's hip, hip hooray!

Check out the headlines from newspapers around the world.
Newseum has other things celebrating the 40-yr old event.
One online exhibit is about the video camera and the problem-solving
that went into the design and creation of the device.

Monday, July 20, 2009

629.45 Apollo 11: 40 Years and Counting

I know exactly where I was, who I was with , and what I was doing on this date at about this time 40 years ago today. I was watching a scientific miracle, the culminating activity of years of hard work, and the dreams of countless others come to fruition.

Man...two men in fact, walked on the moon...and I, for one, was spellbound! I was 17 years old and on the brink of my own adventure---senior year in high school, but I had planned for this event as if I were in the module on top of the rocket.

You see, not only was I child of the 60s, a product of the Cold War and post-Sputnik jitters, I lived around the space program. My summer neighbors were teachers of the astronauts and friends with people who knew the chimps who had been taught the rudimentary tasks to be performed in space. We got visit some retired chimps in their New Mexico compound. School field trips were routinely made to rocket launches in the desert outside my hometown. My family wandered around the deserts and mountains of the same general area encountering signs indicating Government Property-Keep Out Signs because all kinds of things were going on and being tested.

It was an exciting time. My mom and I decided we needed a color TV so we rented one for the special night. We could not imagine this special occasion occurring in our house in mere black and white. Of course, neither of us knew that the actual event itself would be broadcast IN black and white, and grainy at best! And we watched every minute...and held our breathe along with all the guys in Mission Control until we too heard: "Houston, the Eagle has landed!"

If you ever doubted the reasons for it beyond the sheer need of man to explore where he has never been then take a look at these lists of the benefits from the needs of the space program.
It goes WAY beyond Tang, Corningware, and velcro.

It was a team effort, a team success. If you want to see how a team works, watch the mission control room. Watch the teams that suit the astronauts up and lock them in the capsule. Everyone had a job to do and everyone had to rely on everyone to do his job. It was something!

Do I hope we go back? Do I hope we go to Mars? You bet....I just hope I'm around to see some of it. My daughter has selected Coringware for her newlywed home. Do I hope SOME day to get to tell some cute little munchkins all about when it was first made and bet! Do I want to hear them laugh about renting the color TV? Absolutely! And will I hold my breath until the adventure ends...count on it!

P.S. My father finally stopped pacing that night and went down to Sears the next day and bought a little 20 in. COLOR TV on a rickty aluminum was to be our rocketship to the future. We had to be up with the times! Who knew a microwave oven was just around the corner!

Friday, July 17, 2009

92 Walter Cronkite: The Voice of My History

The voice of history as I remember it was stilled today. Walter Cronkite was a part of significant events in my personal timeline of history.

That day in Dallas...

(I was home for lunch and was watching when the announcement came.)

That summer night in July...

(My family stayed up way into the night, waiting, waiting, father pacing like I had never seen him do)

At school for almost any history lesson I had...

(His TV programs were adapted for school viewing and were major classroom resources during my 1960s public education.)

In his own words:

"And that the way it [was]."

306.093 Happy Birthday Happy Meals!

Another pop culture icon, the McDonald's Happy Meal is 30 years old today. Probably one of the best market gimmicks to come down the pike. And we swallowed it hook, lime and sinker, didn't we!

My older daughter is just young enough to say she has never know the world without Happy Meals...and believe me, my two girls had their share of them and all the cute little prizes. I think I finally got rid of (or passed on) the last of them during my last move.

The report I saw this morning said over 200 billion Happy Meals have been served. The most popular toys were the Beany Babies (100 million of those) and in their honor, the company is issuing a new set to commemorate the anniversary. I do have to say that was also one of the saddest things I have ever seen. When a new Beany Baby was coming out, people would line up in the drive-thru, order multiple meals to receive the toys, and as they drove out, dump bags and bags and bags of uneaten food! I HOPE that scene is not repeated.

The company also launched a Happy Meals website last year. If you don't have munchkins in your house and don't know about it, it probably is worth looking at, if, for no other reason than a nostalgic look back. Come on, if you are less than 40, you know you had your fair share, and if you are not, you have had kids who did!

McDonald's Happy Meal 30th Birthday - ABC News

Shared via AddThis

070.5 Working Out The Kinks with Bookr

In one of the online summer professional development programs we have going this year, one of the activities to make and post a bookr. We were having trouble at one of our f2f recesses trying to get this particular book to load. So I promised I would play with it this weekend. I needed a place to post it ...and so you reap the benefits of technology trial and error.

What did I do to get it to post? Absolutely nothing! Apparently all the stars were aligned and I held my mouth just right and boom, up it went ...with no hassle. And it fits the edge overhang...another issue that has popped up with these this summer. So I will make a note that I do it with my Mac. (Will try my PC later.)

Patience is one of the tools you have to have in the 2.0 world. When at first you don't succeed, [be willing to] try, try , try again!

Anyway, enjoy the lovely insect collection put together by Honey Bear. And if you've not put a little visual treat together for yourself, go grab some Flickr pix and play. There is a huge archival collection (7000+ so far) for your viewing pleasure as well.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

629.45 The Adventure Begins: we Choose the Moon
We had lift off this time 40 years ago!
The first manned mission to the moon is being celebrated this week.

The entire audio record from launch to splash down of the event is also available.

Quote this morning from one of the astronauts: "You hold more technology ability in the palm of your hand than we had on the mission"

Image fron NASA

Sunday, July 12, 2009

363.34 Natural Disaster Preparededness: You Better Practice A Lot!

A friend sent me this link (might be re-thinking that relationship after this experience.) It's a game, but not like checkers is a game; more like chess is a game...for masters!

Stop Disasters! A simulation game for all kinds of natural disasters...wildfire, flood, tsunami, earthquake, hurricane. You are given an amount of money and time to strategically buy resources that will protect lives and lessen the economic impact.

I failed miserably when I played with the tsunami...yes, that is what they said "failed miserably." I did better with the flood...only a few lives lost, but it would not have been a pretty community because I put up every safety measure possible. This time I was awarded a medal. I took a picture of it, but lost the screen shot in all the will just have to believe me!

Great for the classroom. Background information and teacher plans included. FAQs include the suggested age of 9-16. Timing would work with class periods (provided procedures and practice were done ahead of time.)

Would be a great collaboration project... and then pit one team against an other.

658.8 Double Meaning: A Lesson (and Laugh) in 2.0 Vocabulary

When I saw this on TV this week, it made me laugh out loud. I loved the company's take on the 2.0 term "social networking."

Coleman - Airtight® Inflatable System
Shared via AddThis

They have a companion video that I featured here.

And not to ignore the print part of the world, the Coleman Co. included one for magazines, etc.

Hummm...2 posts about ads back-to-back? Nothing but coincidence!

Visual & video available here.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

659.102 100 Best Ads: Little Bits of Cultural History

Comments from bloggers can take you to the most interesting blog posts/sites.

The latest one lead me to the The Top 100 Advertising Campaigns, not necessarily a new site, but new to me. I had fun going down the list and remembering all those little mini-movies and stories that entertained us between breaks in the stories we were watching on TV. Most of these
became household icons because A. we had no remotes and B. we had only 3 TV stations to watch for a really long time.

Granted there are a handful from as far back as the 1920s included, but the vast majority made the list because of the time they spent on the airwaves, particularly in the 1950s and 1960s...up to and including the infamous 1984 Macintosh computer commercial!

As is my usual plan, I went thru the list thinking about a visual to of the campaigns that was a personal favorite of mine. Most of the symbols, etc. were found on sites that had rights reserved so I decided on Smokey, the fun icon of my childhood who taught me a lot about how to be careful in the forests of my summertime home.

Once I started reading, I found out the campaign is the longest PSA (public service announcement), Smokey has a very comprehensive interactive website with all kinds of safety info and history of the real Smokey and the ad campaign itself!

By the way, Smokey doesn't remind you that only you can prevent forest fires. Starting in 2001, it was changed to wildfires...doesn't have quite the same ring...messes with the cadence of my brain, but nevertheless, is still an important thing to remember. AND even an icon as important as Smokey does have to undergo a makeover every once and awhile so "GetYour Smokey on!"

Ok, ok, I digress...back to the list of ads. There are so many on it that were fun: Where's the Beef...inspirational: Keep America Beautiful's Crying Indian...and even some that go straight to the heart: Hallmark anything! Come on, you know you tear up sometimes!

Now it's your turn. What's a favorite for you? What memory didn't make the list and should have?

P.S. Not sure what criteria was used in making selections and the information attached to the list doesn't always talk in the "lovely memories" tone of this post. Each to his/her own. That's what great about the 2.0 world!

Visuals from

Saturday, July 4, 2009

770.79 A Burst of Photographic Fireworks

Happy 4th to all!

I played with this particular image generator Tag Galaxy awhile back (months, years?) but just came across it again. It uses photos from our friend Flickr...who doesn't?

If you are in a playful, messin' around mood just go and throw out a keyword or two and see what happens. You will have to pull yourself away!

No, I don't have any ideas how to use it in an educationally settings...not sure how you would pull pictures off (except thru screen print) and even less how you would credit them.  Sometimes, things are just fun ...and should be enjoyed just for the fun! 

It is as simple as this:

Saturday, June 27, 2009

006.7 EdubloggerCon: One Year Later

Gosh, one year ago today...I was attending one of the best educational gatherings ever (for me anyway)... EdubloggerCon08 that was held in San Antonio. I learned SO much on several levels about working in the virtual world, learning in the virtual world and just how much fun all of it can be. The big plus was meeting and talking and sharing with like-minded people! I was floating and didn't need Second Life to do it!

The whole week (as it moved into NECC 08) was so overwhelming...all the things there were to see and learn and all of the people who wanted to share.

If you click here, you can review the posts I wrote while there.

The results from my attendance:

1. After seeing almost EVERYONE working on a MAC, I was determined to bring MAC back into my life and I did and I love it just like I knew I would!

2. I AM a part of the revolution and PROUD of it.

3. I came away even more convinced that I must be an agent of change and do as much as I could to bring about change in my own little circle of influence. In my mind, it is not that education (and school libraries right along with the bigger picture) need to change ...they HAVE to change...and not everyone involved believes it...yet!

and I almost forgot one of the most important things I learned...

4. be sure and bring the power...the power strip that is! If you have an extra plug or two available, you get to meet the coolest people up close and personal. That is Cathy Nelson of TechnoTuesday who shared a bit of power time with me! I really enjoyed the 2-3 brief encounters we had thru the week.

I came across the pictures while searching for something else in FlickrCC and just decided to mark the anniversary by showing you I was there! :-)

Here is the link to this year's EduBlogger Conference...including the traditional "stair" picture and notes from the discussion.

To everyone there, have a grand time...I am definitely there in spirit! And I will be checking in as much as I can.

Credits: The Edubloger08 pictures are from kjarrett

Sunday, June 14, 2009

428.1 Save the Word: Vocabulary Builder of Out-of-Fashion Words

This is the coolest vocabulary site: Save the will want to adopt a word or two...or many! The words call out to you, begging you to select them and save them from old word extinction.

Try will NOT be able to resist. I dare you!

909.08 Iconic Photos: Another Collection Worthy of Your Time

Spent some time this weekend catching up with the thoughts of some of my favorite bloggers and David Warlick at 2 Cents pointed me to this photo collection found at WebDesigner Depot.

It is another group of 100 historically significant portraits/photographic portraits of individuals who have impacted our world for many reasons over the last several hundred years. Yes, most of them are from the last 100 years or so, simply because of their photographic format, but there are classic portraits of much older, and no less significant, historical characters.
I am not here to debate the whys and wherefores of some people being included and others being left out of the collection. Just look at it for who is there and the shear beauty of many of the visuals themselves. As for uses in the classroom and library-related projects...please, there are SO many!

Now, the nagging question is, can these be used for educational purposes? I think you will agree with me that many of them are available from other copyright friendly locations (some are in the LC collection and some are found in the recently uploaded Life/Google collection) so I am assuming this one is as well.
What is the significance of the 4 photos I have chosen to included here, you ask?
Anne Frank -- I have been haunted by her eyes ever since I read the book at about the age of 12 (and many times since then). I have NEVER been able to put myself in any situation, real or imaginary that I assume she encountered. I C-A-N-N-O-T imagine, pretend, or even dream...

Migrant Mother -- this picture simply represents what the Dust Bowl/Depression looks like to me....and after becoming a mother almost 30 years ago, I have learned to "see" other things in her face as well.

Afghan girl -- I remember when she came out on the cover of the National Geographic magazine back in the mid-80s. I remember holding onto that copy for a long time and returning to look at it many times...not knowing that the true significance of the photo was not her green eyes (which really was the focus of the story), but the fact that she represented so much in a region of the world that captured our attention so completely a few years later. I followed the story also when the photographer/reporter went back to find her and see what fate had dealt her. I can't help trite as it sounds...she is hauntingly beautiful on many levels.

And the final photo--Buzz Aldrin on the moon reflecting back a smaller image of his partner (and photographer) Neil Armstrong...a pinpoint of time frozen in my mind...the Apollo 11 moon shot is a HUGE marker on my personal timeline....I can close my eyes and remember vividly historical details of those few scary, and yet, exciting days...both inside and outside my own house!

Ok, enough nostalgia for now...go hunt up some of your own.

Friday, June 12, 2009

TASLA 3rd Morning Session Google Docs, legislative Update

Google Docs
Debbie Schwarz, Mesquite ISD, talked about using Google docs. They collect their end-of-year stats on Google docs. She opened up the presentation portion which I really never have spent time with. I was glad to be reminded of it.
She showed how forms could be sent, filled out and then the spreadsheet would be populated automatically. She created one as an example. It is under New, Form. You can give help for the blanks so they would know how to answer properly. you have different types of questions...short answer, paragraph, multiple choice, check boxes, choose from a list (drop-down), scale. You can even add a theme to it to "decorate." and you can save it to different formats including MSExcel.

I see lots of uses for this new (to me) tool! It is good that others explore so I can take advantage of their ventures.

Legislative Update
Jennifer LaBoon

Key Issues for Schools that did not successfully get all the way
K12 Databases
Full time librarian on every campus using counselors standard (1 per campus of 500 or more) -- would have been unfunded mandate. The timing was just not right to push any herder this time on this.
One of the issues raised was tying it to accountability that each campus has librarian...would solve issue of exemplary campuses who have no librarian.

two opps to help --can you help? Contact Jennifer or Cindy Buchanan
PTA Summer Leadership conference in Austin, Jully 24-25
TASA/TASB Conference in Houston October2-3

Julie Todaro
the results of the public survey on libraries

(FYI: If you want a source to lots of data go here)

SOME results of the survey:
strong, intense voter support
women, older and Hispanic voters, public library users most intensely support need for school libraries
essential because of opportunities to learn to read
under the funding part...concerns about cuts in hours and resources, do not want less available
the voters do see connection between student achievement and strong libraries
this the point she considers the point to use as the hook to all this info....

Question from audience: what was her perception of legislature receiving this data:
stunned looks that data exists
their curiosity was other data was put up also

It was a good conference. Yes, I learned some new things...I always do. But the most important aspect of this whole thing is the opportunity to get to spend time with people I admire, enjoy, and learn from each and every time I am around them.

TASLA 2nd Afternoon Session Training Librarians

Training new librarians

in Ft. Bend...they attend a summer course on electronic resources or information literacy as a participant because they will be expected to teach one of the course during their first year.

new librarians have separate meetings (similar to ours) in addition to regular monthly meetings

Dallas ISD...summer sessions 5-6 days, unpaid in fall 4-7:30, unpaid various courses cover a variety of classes

Overview of Librarianship--photostory format instead of a course.

have “notebook” as they receive info..put it in their notebook

Northside ISD...mentor program

established librarians did a think tank of ideas...

application process for the mentors...principals had to give permission so there would be no surprises

6 meetings with mentors/mentees $200 stipend

monthly checklist for mentors

orientation for mentors...create goodie bag for mentee

Denton ISD...

new program this year (based on Garland’s program)

5 days of training...3 unpaid days in summer, 2 during the year

veterans come in to talk about different topics

this is a day in the life of ....

how do you match a book with reluctant reader

database training

Round Rock ISD...

new librarians workshop 1 day unpaid

what kinds of things are on their mind?

contract between mentor/mentee

they have 4 meetings with each other...list of what to talk about each time

online manual with instructions

acceptable use , copyright, book selection are covered before school on the training day


training library paraprofessionals

Title 1 requirements

that Book Woman...the traveling librarian

uses Raganathan’s 5 laws of library science to generate discussion

Make Them Smile---customer service from Todaro


management of students -- routines

book selection

Thursday, June 11, 2009

TASLA 2nd Morning Session Part 2 Book Awards

Exploring State Book Awards - Janet Hilbin & Jane Claes

49 states have some kind of an award now...190 awards given, not including recommended reading lists...Mississppi is only one currently not giving one
does not include Lone Star, Tayshas type lists
some go back 60-70 years!!

children had some voice in nomination, selection or voting for winners

Bluebonnet is one of largest...used as collection development tool in the state

criteria for nomination varies greatly! purpose is more standard...encourage reading!

Pacific Northwest Young Reader's Award 1940
Kansas had first individual state award 1952

of 95 looked at
21 by adults only
11 chosen exclusively by children
rest are adult selections with student selection of winners

often winners of big awards like Caldecott, Newbery can not be nominated

since 2004:
Eragon 21 awards
Twilight 16 awards
Lightning Thief 16 awards
Tale of Despereaux 15 awards
Loser 12 awards
only picture book with 10 or more My Lucky Day had 11
in total 450 books received awards..76% of the books only got one award (vast majority being picture books)

question: how many have been banned...not sure, but thought only 3-4
top 5 winners are all considered fantasy/science fiction, magical realism
25 have add movies made or are in production

Kehert, Clements, Gutman are top winners but have never won national awards

only 5 awards given exclusively for nonfiction, but 41 non fiction books have won various awards

27 books about dogs won 47 awards
8 adult titles won 19 awards

this data can be important for collection development
they have be thru selection process
trends in student reading
librarians not necessarily using this info

they are publishing this in a book (Linworth) to be out in the fall Coast to Coast: Exploring State Book Awards by Janet Hilbin and Jane Claes from the beginning to 2008
there will be some author interviews included ..they talk about impact on them and how they feel about kids reading

Guess what! Lunch!

TASLA 2nd Morning Session

Reminder: live blogging = typos!  more links to come

k12 Databases program review --
 Marti Rossi, Region 20
all the wonderful online training materials including videos that can be embed on your own pages
survey results were positive regarding the successful use of the materials...opportunity to have things they could not otherwise have.  here is the link to all the materials regarding this resource
the graphs of usage will be added to the tasla wiki so they can be used in resource discussions.

TEA Report (no link available on wiki at this time)
Anita Givens, Karen Kahn 
good budget session for the agency at this point; however next go round may be different.
technology allotment was funded
k12 databases continuation of funding
TxVirtual School Network   20 million for 2 years
professional development dollars

HB 3:
changes to high school graduation plans
recommended/distinguished plan  4X4 is still there...6 electives, 5 electives of r distinguished
fine arts at middle school has been added as requirement
career/tech courses....what courses could count for 4th yr. math and science
opportunities for librarians to assist middle schoolers make decsions on what to take in high school based on future plans...

HB120, 136, 3643 all talk about prek education and full-day prek classes

must pass 5th, 8th grade TAKs to be promoted, can be retained at parent request

Funding  HB 3646...
added are these parts:
SB 197 personal financial literacy responsibility course for students...banking!
SB 199 provide training to teachers on financial literacy so they can work with students

SB175 top ten percent change for UT

lots of changes in health curriculum...impact on library resources?

textbooks, e-textbooks, instructional materials, tech equip
use textbook money to select electronic materials and equipment to use
possibly will be vetoed

HB 3646 
affects Virtual school network
funding for online courses will be the state's responsibility instead of students
count for ADA even if at home...pays district that proves course and district that must provide equipment to have courses...helps with 4X4 in small districts

HB4294 computer lending can provide computers for home
also having access until 7:00 3 nights a week!!  impact on thinking about this

holding students responsible for electronic materials/equipment just like print textbooks

new curriculum website
several empty spots for positions...especially in math
science TEKs PD being set up
Tech Apps writing team to be set up 

new tech apps will start being reviewed in the fall...this IS something librarians should be involved with

Federal Update
58 million from stimulus..addition to what state normally gets
Target Tech in Texas (T3)....21st century classroom grants
collaboration, one ELA target should be part of application
target focus area FOR libraries...learner-centered technology and info access (Tx School Library Standard III) for info:

Other Funds for Technology
NCLB website is good source

performance measures can be found on OMB website
percentage of school personnel who meet their state technology standards..librarians are a part of that count (librarians SHOULD be filling out star charts on themselves?)
percentage of students who meet state technology standards by end of 8th grade.

end of this is break time...more networking!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

TASLA Session #3 biblios and Speedgeeking

Remember: this was live blogging...there will be typos!!

David Schuster from Plano is talking about and how it could be used to create a state-wide database for all our records that could then be searched and downloaded!  He is demoing how records can be created and edited...of course we could import what we already have!

It sounds like something that could be possible. The discussion even went to thinking this program might be an alternative to things like Marc, no one in my district get too excited.  We are NOT changing anything at this point!!!!  This is a discussion of possibilities only.

There was also some discussion about ownership of the records and even parts of the records vs ownership of the database where records reside. This part hurt my head. Marc records are just records, for goodness sakes. Oops, my opinion is creeping in!

Back to -- it lives outside the firewall! That is a good thing.

The rest of the afternoon was spent in SpeedGeeking...a smorgasbord of 10 Library 2.0 tools...Animoto, Glogster, Flickr CC, flip camera, netbooks, ipod touch, kindle & sony reader, ning, voice thread,shelfari.

I did an Animoto  of the learning that was going on.

Ok, now on to more networking... the f2f kind...over dinner!

TASLA Speedgeeking

Groups of library administrators enjoying quick looks at 2.0 tools

TASLA Session #2 Peggy Rudd TSLAC / Second Life

This crazy picture will not move right is part of the Second life discussion you know who it is ? Answer below!! :-)

TSLAC Report:
Peggy is giving us the annual report ...the state of libraries speech so to speak!

Legislature info/results
increased funding for K12 databases...keep what we have and expand
state-wide catalog plan...share our librarians do naturally

Not successful!
thought we had 2.5 million dollars but did not move forward

people are still plugging away to bring about success.

creative budgeting (federal $) should protect the databases for now.
may have to scale back on support and training part which are important, but it may have to happen. 
more training comes more comfort

technology pupil allotment will help in some ways.

TEA, Higher-Ed got lots of stimulus $. wish some could have come our way.
maybe some resources from TEA could go into the database budget.

eligibility for k12 has not changed. can't expand to private schools..that did not happen.
they will continue to have to work thru service center program to get best price.

in 2010...TexShare database, k12 database bid will occur
since $ resources did not increase, probably won't increase database resources

k12 databases and teacher prep
this was the 2n
d most requested wish after funding
trying to get info to decision makers in the schools..they need to be aware of the importance of the database

online course...State library site
services to librarians tab

she talked about the state Library of Texas....some can't connect because of district restrictions. maybe larger k12 libraries could add their records

we saw A Starry, Starry Night presentation..actually saw the site being built...that was pretty cool! (o btw, she just said it is not there anymore!!)  there is a video of it.

Look who is here in Second Life at the ALA site...Barry BigBoots  (sorry, I shook as I took the picture)

Othe virtual worlds for kids
Habbo Hotel..teen
Webkinz..little kids
Gaia Online ..teens
Ty girlz 10-15 girls

machinima...machine + cinema; filming inworld

Why Second Life?
ALA has an island

another event
The Bookbinder's Ball...annual event

book discussions go on all the the Reader's Garden
a book she talked about Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson

global collaboration
California Library Assoc has had some
used Animoto to show us a virtual tour of one the events...good way to show it off (as youknow, I love Animoto!!)

virtual classrooms
feel the sense you are in the room with others at the same time!

the land of Lincoln...the details of the school room

sandboxes are available in SL for learning

she tried to show us around but of course, technology did its usually trick! but I will link ot her presentation later and you can see lots of "stuff"

p.S. forgot to mention..we still have those important breaks called ...eating !!

we back channeled this conversation at
we hope to have an archived copy if it later...cross your fingers!

TASLA Session #1 21st Century Educator

Remember these are ROUGH notes...P.S. it was very good and fun...will do some linking later!!

Kim Cofino, International School in Bangkok Always Learning

This is being done thru Skype and she will demonstrate screen sharing as well.

The power of personal learning networks...

The Networked Teacher...

traditional tools AND 2.O tools


24-7 learning

immediate responses/feedback during the learning process

can include personal interests as well as professional interests

interconnect but the groups of learners can change

global connections are possible

you have to build your own PLN, a community happens--you join that

it is your responsibility to go out and get the info and learning ---it DOES take time

Evolution of an educator

pre-PLN wasa time of isolation, a few colleagues

a list of books that was her start (Warlick, Richardson, Wikinomics, Long Tail)

K-12 online conference was another first that got her started


forming groups...and the personal connections that can be made

collaborations of a ling distance nature came next

joining communities (nings)

constantly connecting...Twitter

where are you in your evolution

Grow your own PLN

The steps she would follow if she could do it all over again...

start small...can’t do it all at once..

start with one tool like readers (RSS)

learn by lurking

it comes to look at it on your own time

you find your little don’t have to follow everyone

social networking

professional connections in Facebook maybe...broaden your connections

start sharing ...thru a blog!

develop your online identity...being anonymous is not always in your best interest...

personal conversations...with things like Skype

personal connections even long distance

online conferences...2nd Life and other events

as structure or unstructured as you want

be connected constantly...Twitter

tidbits of info over time tell the story of this person

she talked about Flickr Creative Commons as the primary source for her pictures because she has permission based the CC

She also talked about a site where you can select only things that can be shared

Presentation for making presentations better

Here Comes Everybody (The Power of Organizing without Organizations)...another book she recommends

Back Channeling at TASLA

The annual administrator conference for library leadership ...TASLA starts in just a few minutes. If you want to follow along in a back channel .... click this link, put up a name and join us!

We are using the service that we can save the info.
Let's hope I'll be successful at doing that...yes, this is my first time!

Saturday, June 6, 2009

028.162 Bluebonnets 2009-2010

For your viewing pleasure!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

004.165 MacBook Pro: Grab That Screen Shot

Slowly, but surely, I am getting more comfortable with MY fabulous MacBook Pro...I have spent one session at the Genius Bar (needless to say I was NOT the genius in the conversation) and got to spend two days with a Mac trainer trying to absorb as much as possible and remember as much as I could on how the Mac acts differently from the PC.

I have trouble with the smallest, most insignificant things with technology quite often and I continue to be flummoxed by the smallest details of  the Mac as well. Thought I would go out of my mind trying to easily copy URLs...duh, 1, 2, 3 clicks, command-copy!

Ok, now to the main purpose of this post. You know HOW much I love to use screen shots and how fun I think it is that on a Mac, you actually get to hear the camera "click!" In case you are missing the screen shot key from the PC keyboard, on the Mac it is command-control-3.

BUT if you really intend to use the screen shot, that is a whole 
other story! After piling up a bunch of junk on my pretty, clean desktop that were totally useless (on several occasions), I FINALLY clicked Help tonight and read about application that allows you to select the portion of the screen you want before clicking and allows you to save your shot in the format of your choice in iPhoto.

So ridiculously E-A-S-Y! Why do I insist on making things difficult? Help is on a computer for a reason!

GRAB is now is now a permanent resident of my Dock.

797 Water Fun & Games: Thinking About the Beach

School's almost out and thoughts turn to water fun. 

In looking for something else completely on a different subject (as I often do), I came across a notice for this new online game prepared by NOAA. Looks interesting.

Then I discovered that NOAA has a whole page of games ...and also links to two water-based sites created by National Geographic and PBS

Jump in and have fun!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

648.5 Cleaning: Necessary Tips Even in the 2.0 World

Good article for keeping the Wii Fit Balance Board sparkling clean...especially when you are encouraged to use it barefooted!
Now don't get too excited...I am NOT saying you should encourage the kids to do that at is just what the article hooks you with!

And realizing that everyone in my district has been using their laptops for a year now (gosh, time flies when you are having fun!), here is an article on how to clean a laptop keyboard. The ol' turn it over and shake isn't necessarily the best thing to when the keys are attached to the unit itself. :-)

Nice website overall...good tips on lots of stuff 

Saturday, May 23, 2009

028.162 Bluebonnet Reviews in a Snap!

ReaderBuzz has a short, sweet and to the point list of  reviews for the current list of Bluebonnet books. Takes about a minute to read her good and bad points about each title!

...and we agree on our favorite one!  ribbit!


P.S. She also has thoughts about books for older readers.