Thoughts on teaching, technology, learning and life in an era of change.

Archive for the ‘ Web 2.0 ’ Category

Blogging via iPhone
December 27th, 2008

Well, this is a first for me. I am composing this post on the phone. I think this will be primarily used for quick text based posts. I think I should make the time to update my version of WordPress. Been a while since the last update.

Getting started ~ putting knowledge into practice
December 19th, 2008

During the afternoon I gave a presentation via the Net to a group of teachers gathered together in Ungarie in far western NSW, Australia. They were attending a two-day Weaving Technology workshop. The title of the presentation was “Getting started ~ putting knowledge into practice”. The presentation was in conjunction with the NSW CAP programme, the DET and the Weaving Technology group. Anne-Maree Moore and Stacey Kelly were the prime movers behind the day.

A number of educators worked with the teachers during the last two days. In addition to Anne-Maree and Stacey the participants heard from Adam Currey, Phil Nosworthy, Darron Watt and Greg Alchin. A couple of new tools were brought to my attention during the two days: Kahootz and Shoutem.

The workshops that happened in Ungarie were a follow up to the excellent Weaving Technology conference that was held in Wagga, NSW, Australia last October. Following that conference I composed a few ideas regarding the thought or process of getting started with technology in the classroom. I blogged about those ideas at the time.

Essentially, when starting out with technology in the classroom I feel it is useful to keep the following three rules of thumb in mind…

1. Choose an aspect of the curriculum with which you hold a passion.
2. Choose an online tool with which you feel comfortable or ‘clicks’ for you.
3. Steer a simple, straightforward path at the outset.

As well, timing is also important… For example I find term III is favourable moment when the pressure is off somewhat. No final exams and no reports to write.

I pointed the participants in today’s presentation to the following resources…

Web 2.0 links and resources: Here you will find online guides and resources for applications and tools as diverse as Twitter, Second Life, Wikis and more. There are links to classroom blogs, wikis, Second Life sites, teacher blogs and a variety of advice from educators near and far. I have just updated the list with additional Nings and Twitter resources.

How to guides. This page is chock-a-block full of pdf guides to blogs, wikis, Twitter, RSS feeds, Posterous and much more. Feel free to download and use these guides. Worpdress has just been updated so that guide is a little out of date. I have also added these resources to my home page.

Blogrolls. These are some of the blogs that I read some of the time, not all of the time. This needs updating. Need to import my latest OPML file into Google Reader.

I have also uploaded four rough edits of an interview recorded by Nanyang Technological University. Four questions were answered. These videos could have acted as a back-up in the event that I could not connect with the participants for whatever reason. Click on each question to view the relevant video. You will need to ensure you have Quicktime installed.

What is Web 2.0?
How can teachers and students exploit Web 2.0 technologies for teaching and learning?
How can teachers benefit from web 2.0 technologies?
How can students benefit from web 2.0 technologies?

The presentation that was conducted this afternoon was recorded and is available here. Jump to 37.11 when the presentation actually begins. There were, initially, some issues with audio at my end. That was ironic as we had been experiencing some issues with video earlier this week. Technology keeps you on your toes, eh?

Cheers, John.

Emerging technologies workshop ~ Part 2
December 10th, 2008

Wednesday morning, Sydney. Arrived last night. Workshop is on today. Innovative Technology in Schools Conference at the University of Technology in Sydney. Printed the resources (grab your own copy here) and updated the links for today’s participants. Added a number of Second Life related links to the Web 2.0 Workshop page. These include links to the ISTE Second Life site, Terra Incognita site and Skoolabarate.

I also updated the Web 2.0 workshop page with some additional resources and links, particularly with respect to that most enigmatic of all technology tools, Twitter. See you there.

Resources links updated
November 13th, 2008

Just corrected some links on this blog to these resources…

Web 2.0 Workshop Resources
Technology guides and support documents
Web 2.0 links

Fix for broken embedded Jaiku links
October 26th, 2008

I like my Jaiku badge. It sits on my web site’s Welcome page. It acts like a “What’s New?” item. It takes in feeds from my blog, Flickr, delicious, etc. Visitors to my site quickly know what is going on.

Jaiku was feted as a Twitter killer yet that did not come to pass. I never used Jaiku as a Twitter replacement. I do not post Jaikus if you know what I mean. When Kevin Lim* shared it with the Media Socialists at Toa Payoh Library in Singapore last year I thought, “Brilliant, I can set up an elegant little lifestream on my home page!” One can add their feeds, fine tune the appearance and colour palette to match their site, copy and paste the code and there you have it.

Well, the embedded links have failed to work for some time. Clicking on an item would not take you to the originating source, for example, my blog. The embedded links worked on some Macs and some PCs but not others. Updating or rolling back the version of Flash Player worked. Sometimes it did not. I had a temporary fix and then that no longer worked.

I put the problem in the ‘too hard’ basket for a while. I decided to Google the problem again this morning and this page from Adobe popped up in the results: Links from SWF files in HTML page no longer function (Flash Player 9).

I read the data, added the relevant lines of code to the Jaiku badge code and “Voila!”, it works!

Now, for the next problem. Jaiku will not find my Twitter feed. Oh well. Solve one problem and another one appears on the horizon to provide me with a challenge. Although, I think this is a problem with Google~Jaiku.

*If you have not subscribed to Kevin Lim’s blog then why not do so now? He is currently researching social networking technologies as part of his doctoral studies. He is a worthy, entertaining and enjoyable read.