Thursday, October 23, 2008
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
The discussion developed from the initial issues around access to some of this technology in a school setting and moved more interestingly into the field of how we can use these spaces in new and novel ways.....getting away from as Ron Edwards would say 'the sage on the stage'. I have attended 'in world' presentations of this kind, and while for me this feels comfortable ( back to lectures with good visuals) and the chance to interact with colleagues many miles away, this style of experience will need to change for the 21st Century.
I was pleased when Ron, Ian and Dave Taylor showcased how we can use the 3d nature of the environment to model 'realworld' situations.
Ron showed how in his examples from Ambient showcased their in world peer mentoring within a safe and secure area and also the fusion of mobile phone and virtual world with the Virtual Worlds London project. Ian took us into the work that IBM took us into the world of 'inworld' staff training and also IBM's virtual Forbidden City. Dave showed us a little of the work that he has done with SciLands in Second Life......
All excellent stuff, tomorrow my main focus will be looking at affordable implementation and sustainable development of mobile technology with the Sottish LTS group including Ian Stuart from Islay.
Monday, October 13, 2008
Dan Sutch from Futurelabs concluded an excellent show and tell (Pecha Kucha) session at HHL by encouraging all educators to get involved in the discussion and discussion on the way education should be preparing for 2025..... how will education look in 2025.....will or should institutions such as schools still exist in 2025..... help Futurelab out by joining the debate here. Also follow their blog. Handheld Learning08.
The Opening session at this year's Handheld Learning conference at The Brewery deep in the heart of The Barbican was hosted by Andy Black from Becta. Andy had assembled a group of teachers who have achieved some extraordinary results from bringing technology into their classrooms. Most importantly using technology as 'an enabler' to achieve a teaching goal - the classroom is not tech driven but the tech is curriculum driven. Above is Nic Hughes from Nightingale Primary School, who introduced the Robosapien as a means of teaching control. Andrew Davis from Clunbury Primary School also showed actual work with 'real' children. We also heard about the Learning2go handheld project from Wolverhampton. There were other presenters in the session all excellent in their own right which certainly started the conference well...... this afternoon Pecha Kucha session on emerging technologies.
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
See the campaign in action here
Gurkhas are fighting for Justice. They want the same terms and conditions as their UK and Commonwealth counterparts.
Britain has had no greater friends than the Gurkhas. They have served all across the world in the defence of our Country for nearly 200 years. Over 45,000 died in the two World Wars as part of the British Army. They are still fighting in the British Army today.
You may have seen in the media that they are fighting in Parliament and the Courts. Step by step, things are getting better - but there is a long way to go.
Today, we expect judgement from the High Court as to whether their treatment has been unlawful in terms of the right to live in the UK if they retired before 1997.
Whatever the High Court decides today, the Government has to change the law on how it treats Gurkhas. We demand the full, fundamental change in law that will allow all retired Gurkhas the right to live here.
By signing up below you will be expressing your support for all Gurkhas. You will be signing our petition, and we will be able to contact you in the future as we mount the largest ever campaign to get them the Justice that they deserve.
Join me in the campaign: together, we can finally right this wrong.
I think that it is still a powerful contender, perhaps held back by its limit of 20 people per meeting in the free version, rising to 100 with addition of being able to add your own branding in the Pro $99 per year version. In the free and pro versions you can only have one meeting going on at one time but can have meetings spread out around the clock which is useful. Below are some of the key features of DimDim4
Look out for more features from the DimDim crew in 2009.
Sunday, September 28, 2008
Peggy Sheehy opens the conference with some inspring stories of how SL can be used in education.
HeyJude Online's presentation and discussion at the Joeys Auditorium
Saturday, September 27, 2008
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
For the quality of the learning experience this is a must see recording.
I see that from earlier this month (1st September) Skype has discontinued( or in their words - retired) its Skypecasts (beta) as again in their words 'the quality of what was produced didn't quite measure up to the high standards that they required of the service'. This will be a disappointment to those who used it to join in some excellent conversations over VOIP.
However I can understand their decision as the open nature of joining a skypecast could also lead to some less than brilliant examples of VOIP - Skypecasts could literally be gate-crashed by anyone registered with Skype, I remember from the first series of K12Online in 2006 that the 'When Night Falls 24 hour skypecast was on numerous occasions stopped in its tracks by strange interlopers!
I hope that Skype have an idea of how they want to replace the 'Wild West' that was Skypecast!!!
I think that the winner as far as student use is concerned is the interface itself allowing them to visualise where they are in the table and then have the rich full media experience.
Here is the introduction to the series :
You can also subscribe to their Youtube feed here http://www.youtube.com/periodicvideos
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Monday, September 22, 2008
Sunday, September 21, 2008
Utterli is particulalry easy to use and I think could easily become addictive..... ooooh dear!
(Utterli was until earlier this month known as Utterz)
It strikes me as a tool which is as easy to get your head around as something like Voicethread in that the recording procees is easy, it even gives you a time line in order that you can organise your presentation. You can use a range of different sources to which flowgram will sync. My small example uses a voice over a blog post, followed by a picture from my hard drive ( I should have voiced over that as well!) You can also upload powerpoint slides for voice overs as well. I thin that it would be great to see how kids in a real class use this tool..... more creatively than I ;-)( the sound effect in the background, not of course a steam train, but Mrs H ironing..... I did my ironing this ironing before joining Sue, Dean and the gang from downunder .... honestly I did!!!!)
My WOW of the week - is Yammer, Twitter without the hassle!
Yammer recently won the top prize at the TechCrunch 50 event. But what is it and how could it work for you?
Yammer is Twitter-like in that it works on micro-blogging rules of short posts, where it scores over Twitter is that you can set up a Yammer network for your own organisation/ school or social network group which is then closed to others..... no followers only invitees! In addition to the micro blogging you can also tag posts to help colleagues find what they are looking for. If the organisation or someone within it wishes to takes admin rights over the group allowing access controls etc there is a fee of $1 per user per month, but if not the whole system works free for your users.
Below David Sachs the founder of Yammer explains the origins and uses of Yammer
It would be a great system to set up for all sorts of groups - especially perhaps as people consider how to introduce these tools into the classroom - Yammer can be configured to work from SMS (The company already allows interaction with the service via the site, an AIR client, iPhone, Blackberry, IM, SMS and email. This evening they’ve also launched an API to allow third party developers to build Yammer into their applications. ) The AIR client integration means that you can have a Twirl - like update on your desktop.
You could set up your class/subject group up on Yammer and use this as a means of communication for both assignments and as a method of communicating comments on assigments. It could also form part of your education of pupils on acceptable use.
Within a school a Yammer community of teachers would certainly help to begin the process of integrating web 2.0 tools into teachers daily lives with a purpose - I would advise against school admin getting involved as it could soon temper the debate within the group!!
This certainly seems to be something which would be useful in many different schools/organisations as a means of communication that the Twitter community can understand.
Friday, August 08, 2008
First the poor B52's tried to wow the crowd,who joined in reluctantly at first, but gradually warmed to things as the numbers in the arena grew to its predicted 19,000.The B52's did an hour set.
But were followed by the fab 3 who started spectacularly with 'Message in a Bottle' back by the drums of the NYPD just watch this for the start of a concert!( thanks to TheSchemer among others for the Youtube links)The guys actually did over 2 1/4 hours on stage, I guess largely on adrenaline.The audience did their very best to raise the roof off 'The Garden', sting had his beard theatrically shaved off and .....at the very end the fat lady did actually sing.
Thank you for a great night Andy, Stewart and 'Master of Ceremonies' Sting, it was brilliant and great to be able to say..... we were there.
Friday, August 01, 2008
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
'Newsflash! from Sean
It looks like the dates for the 2008 UK MoodleMoot will be October 16th and 17th. We are just finalising the venue details at present, but we suggest that if you wish to attend and present, that you send in your name and an outline as soon as you can (until we can get the database for this set up, please email them to Jon Allen, Jason Cole or myself). We apologise for the delay in announcing this - the difficulty lay in finding a venue large enough for the size that the Moot has grown to, without having to charge a small fortune in registration fees.
As soon as we have more information about the venue, and details regarding registration, we will post them here.'
by Sean Keogh.
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
Thanks to daria ( a french blogger-le blogue!) and his link to this simple and yet so important piece of code:
To compile put the lame file you downloaded in your user folder
Right click it and select extract all followed by ok
Go into the lame folder you just made
Click tools then open console window
Type sudo apt-get install build-essential
then type su
after you enter your password type ./configure
then type make
then type make install
That should be it Audacity should find the file automatically.
So simple but it works, and once in audacity preferences it will happily find the 'lame encoder' Now Eeepc900 is a fully functioning podcasting machine...................the podfather has to try it out......soon.
Secondly, Dean as many of us believe that you have to grow this collaboration it cannot be imposed in a false way, it has to be organic using the medium that your pupils find most relevant to their voice, also don't be afraid to scaffold the learning along the way, and also to use issues which arise as 'learning opportunities' not as so often happens, as a means of curtailing discussion and as a result the whole learning experience for the pupils. I found as well that if this process is given time to grow it will take firmer root in our pupils psyche and will just become the NORM and you will have a growing community whole will act as advocates for this method of learning. All of which brings me back to Dean's excellent presentation below. Thank you for sharing this piece Dean. Learn more about Dean's work on Project Based Learning (PBL) here (courtesy of Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach)
Thursday, July 10, 2008
Thanks guys, I really appreciate it ;-)
I am sure that a photo of me wearing the said garment will appear here soon....... even though as you may have noticed I hate having my photo taken.
Tuesday, July 08, 2008
Terry would welcome our feedback on the project, so if you have any points to raise follow the links on this page to leave your thoughts. All I can say is thank you Mr Freedman for continuing to promote and encourage the use of new technologies in classrooms both here in the UK and around the world..... dear reader you re encouraged to download the publications and use them with staff in your schools........ please.
As I become more adventurous with my Linux coding I discover how capable the Asus Eeepc900 is. If you look very carefully at the screenshot above you may just notice in the top left hand corner of the screen, an old friend ....... Audacity ( my favourite podcast recording software) ** message to Joe Dale following a conversation on Sunday - Yes Audacity on the Eeepc900 **
Here is a screenshot of Audacity running on the KDE operating system on the Eeepc, recording with a headset and mic is preferable to using the built in mic (I guess you might in an emergency, however it is not very good quality!). The coding was not at all difficult after a few false starts (code I used here), I reckon 10 minutes tops to get the coding done and Audacity up and running.
All I have failed to do now is find out how to open the lame.dll file to fully enable MP3 conversion- so if anyone else out there has a fail safe way of enabling the lame.dll file I will owe them a drink!
Wednesday, July 02, 2008
As part of my researches into the use of gaming in the classroom, I found myself in a large darkened room at NECC being taken into the wonderful World of Warcraft by Leslie Fisher. Some may know of my own ventures into the use of the Myst game in the Primary classroom, so it is a field which is of interest to me, as I guess it is for others.
Once you enter the World you create your avatar and what type of character you are with your characteristics ( mostly though not exclusively violent!).
Once settled in you can choose to accept a 'Quest' - questing gives them experience. In the World it takes you an enormous amount of time to reach the higher levels ( now 80 levels in all, and growing all of the time!) however you do have to break the questing down into small steps.
You need to go to the getting started guide you need to research the game this is a higher level skill that pupils have to achieve, so the higher level kids will soak up this like a sponge. The game will also improve pupils spelling skills and has an etiquette all of it's own, strangely not tolerating poor behaviour or bad spelling, while accepting random violence!.
There are many online sites around the world helping newbies to come to grips with their 'new world' although you will have to use your critical skills to source the best information. There are forum groups eg thottbot.com for information forums on questing and all things 'Warcraft'.
Social interaction- it doesn't matter who the individuals online as none knows who you are - very like 2life. Also there is complete equality online disability does not exist in an online environment
Bad language and being impolite are not tolerated nor is poor spelling.
You can buy or sell to people along the way thus earning money. You get rewarded for progressing in the game. You can also make things as you go along.
This game is totally immersive and will allow kids to develop their spatial awareness skills.
there are professions for characters from level1 it takes 15,000hours to reach level 70. Once you purchase the game you have to pay a regular monthly fee *see below from Wikepedia
* These rather garbled notes were taken during Lesley's presentation, in the darkened room, my feelings on the WoW, it's a great looking environment and gives great feedback to the player/players who are online........ its use in an educational setting is less clear cut - we heard tales of youngsters globally who are playing the game (at home) I am not sure that school authorities would see past the violent reputation of these games, it does have some educational value however it is unlikely that you will see it in a classroom near you anytime soon!
Tuesday, July 01, 2008
The stroll along the Riverwalk to the Convention Centre was as relaxing as usual, in the pleasant summer heat. I guess that San Antonio differs greatly from other American cities, in that above ground is an American city, which seems a little quiet compared to others, while below and flowing under those city streets The Riverwalk is where the city comes alive - all of the bird song that you here is down there, while the bustling arteries that are the Riverwalk are rich in the sights, smells and sounds of this city so close to Mexico.
Contrast this to the vast air conditioned Convention Centre, large, impersonal and COLD! I was in discussion this afternoon with a group of teachers who were a mix of newbies like me and some 'old hands' about the ethics behind the conference, what is the target audience for these 'Mega' conferences? The conclusion was......... not us. But and it is an important but, to pull in a wide range of national and international visitors an event like this has to have a critical scale and reputation.
ISTE to be fair do their best to recognise the educational benefits of risk taking and has scheduled presentations and panel discussions linked to using new technologies in new and creative ways.
The Blogger's Cafe is also a recognition of the worth of the community, for me though here is the dilemma, how it is solved I would be interested to discuss. How do you create an area where meaningful discussions and collaboration between teachers can take place, while at the same time not hiding this place from those who may be curious and would be likely to 'stop by' to see what is going on. The positioning/design of the space is not quite there in my opinion. It has been placed on a main walkway for those going to presentations which is great, it means that it is not hidden away as a place where only those 'inside the fish tank' will go, however the space lacks the intimacy and feel of a space where people can find a quiet corner to have a chat or ask that question that has been bugging them about how to move forward with their ideas.
From this newbies point of view ISTE positioning is good, organisation/design of the space could do better. I must add though the positioning of power sockets enabling great power hook-up is a definite plus.
Perhaps today I might just dip my toe into the 'Great Hall of Commercialism' we'll see....... I might just take the easy way out and seek the company of those with whom I have more affinity!
Monday, June 30, 2008
Friday, June 27, 2008
Saturday, June 21, 2008
It has finally been released following its beta testing - cool Mozilla Firefox 3.0 is here.... sorry there are visuals from me yet -I need to work out how to upgrade the Asus 900 to 3.0!!! But believe me when I say that Firefox 3.0 will not disappoint. Among the host of apps which integrate is PicLens v1.7 from CoolIris ( thanks to Dave Clancy from IB Cardiff for showing us this)
It really is the coolest way to search and view video and images on line -this is how the web should be web 3.0 is getting closer. Other features of Firefox 3.0 can be found here. As ever open source development shows the big companies the way......well done Mozilla I for one hope you make it into the Guinness Book of World Records for the total number of downloads in the first 24 hours of release.
Surely this conference with its focus firmly on first class practitioners talking about what they have done in their own classrooms cannot be bettered,as these are teachers on the cutting edge of the creative use of technology with pupils. I certainly intend to be taking a trip across the Solent to the beautiful Isle in October....... you should to!The Isle of Wight Conference 2008 takes place this year on 25th-26th October at Nodehill Middle School in Newport and will cost £100 to attend. As in previous years, the event will feature a host of practical sessions delivered by inspirational speakers from around the UK on topics such as:
* Mobile Phones
* Primary Languages
* Ning networking
* Virtual Learning Environments
* Digital Storytelling
* Games based learning
* Gender differences
* Digital Voice Recorders
* One Stop Animation
* Interactive Whiteboards and Voting Systems
* Blogging and Podcasting
* Assessment for Learning
* New KS3 curriculum
* Web 2.0 tools
* Sharon Tonner - ICT specialist, High School of Dundee
* Jo Rhys-Jones - AST in MFL, Kingswear Primary School
* Lisa Stevens - Spanish Teacher and eTwinning ambassador, Whitehouse Common Primary School,
* Carole Nicoll - Language Factory
* Drew Buddie - ICT coordinator, Royal Masonic School for Girls and eTwinning ambassador
* Nick Mair - HoD in MFL, Dulwich College
* John Warwick - Deputy Head, St Luke's School and eTwinning ambassador
* Kathleen Holton - HoD in MFL, Argoed High School
* Mark Pentleton - Radio Lingua Network
* Lesley Welsh – AST in MFL, English Martyrs School and Sixth Form College and SSAT languages lead practitioner coordinator
* Chris Fuller - Spanish teacher, Edgehill College and SSAT languages lead practitioner
* Sharon Balch - French teacher, Swanmore Middle School
* Doug Dickinson - Independent ICT consultant
* Kathy Wicksteed - Languages advisor for new KS3 curriculum
* Adam Sutcliffe - MFL teacher, The Gordon Schools and Glow Champion
* Lesley Haggar-Vaughan, Shireland CLC manager
* Julie Adoch, HoD in MFL, Heathfield Foundation Technology College and her students
There will also be promotional sessions run by our sponsors Podium, Televic, Sanako, ConnectED and Babelzone and other publishers such as Heinemann, Oxford University Press and Espresso will have stands in the exhibition.
A free MFL Show and Tell session will take place in The Function Room of The Bargeman's Rest on Saturday 25th October and like last year, delegates will be able to sign up on the conference wiki if they would like to speak or just watch.
In the next month or so, I will publish a delegate pack including details of how to book, session titles, biographies, travel arrangements, where to stay etc on my blog which will give you plenty of time to persuade your school to let you come to this exciting opportunity for continuing professional development!
Here are some pictures and quotes from 2007 to whet your appetite:
# Taken sooo much away from today. Thanks a million! Lisette Begue – Sneyd Community School)
# Excellent. Well done to everyone who took part and looking forward to next year (John Bald – Education Guardian)
# Thank you for running this inspirational event (Annalise Adam – Gregg School)
# Excellent. Well done and a big thank you to the speakers. Really inspiring (Virginie Rayner – Wheatley Park School)
# You surpassed last year. Fantastic! (Volker Green – The City Academy)
# A great conference that has given me some great practical ideas to use in my teaching. Thank you. (Tamsin Cobden – Solent Middle School)
So see you in October and spread the word.
- ► 2010 (58)
- ► 2009 (84)
- Diigo Tags 10/31/2008
- Diigo Tags 10/23/2008
- Diigo Tags 10/15/2008
- Virtual Worlds and Social Networks at HandHeld Lea...
- Diigo Tags 10/14/2008
- Pecha Kucha at HandHeld Learning 2008
- HandHeld Learning Conference 08 Day 1
- Diigo Tags 10/12/2008
- Diigo Tags 10/11/2008
- Diigo Tags 10/03/2008
- Diigo Tags 10/01/2008
- The Gurkha Justice Campaign
- Dim Dim 4 - still a great user interface
- Diigo Tags 09/29/2008
- Paul's Virtual Worlds Diigo Tags
- Paul's mobile microblogging Diigo Tags
- The Jokaydian UnConference in Second Life
- Teachmeet 08 at the Scottish Learning Festival
- The demise of Skypecasts
- Periodic Table of Videos
- Diigo Tags 09/23/2008
- If you click the EdTech Roundup link above it will...
- Diigo Tags 09/22/2008
- Utterli ( nee Utterz)
- Using Flowgram
- A Video that speaks for itself
- Yammer - A micro-blog for your organisation
- Diigo Tags 09/21/2008
- Diigo Tags 09/20/2008
- Diigo Tags 09/19/2008
- Diigo Tags 09/18/2008
- Diigo Tags 09/17/2008
- Diigo Tags 09/15/2008
- Diigo Tags 09/08/2008
- ► August (6)
- 'Newsflash! from Sean It looks like the dates fo...
- Podfather Podcast on Asus Eeepc900
- Audacity and MP3 conversion on Eeepc
- Implementing a powerful Learning Community
- A Birthday Present
- Mr Freedman goes to print
- Twine (beta invite)
- Further Eeepc developments
- World of Warcraft in the classroom!!
- Conference or Unconference?
- ► June (9)
- ▼ October (11)
- ► 2007 (228)