Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Getting Ready to Start Up Again

We continue to find ways to weave technology into our lives... including the teaching and learning process. I enjoy exploring and sharing some of that technology. It is time to share again.

I have missed blogging on a regular basis and am looking forward to starting again! You can find me at where I now blog.

a friendly helper when I'm working at my computer

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Tips for Teaching with Media

Edutopia has published a very good resource, Ten Top Tips for Teaching with New Media. The technology suggestions are good, but what makes the publication most helpful are the specific suggestions for using the technology with your students.

Use VoiceThread to establish the idea of collaborative, productive activities early in the school year. Teach students how to use a start page such as iGoogle that they can access anywhere there is Internet accessibility and that will enable them to have their productivity tools available. Show students how to use Wordle to analyze their own writing. (The image posted in this blog is a Wordle of the blog's text.)

The suggestions continue. Download this PDF and see which ideas will work well in your classroom.

Photography Resolution Amended

St. Francis of Assisi is considered by some to be the patron saint of animals. His special day in the church calendar is October 4. In our church we have a special blessing of our pets on that day. This friendly bunny was one of the pets blessed in our service this past Sunday (October 4).

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Photography Resolution Amended

No... I'm not confused about what season it is. I was at a museum that displays many of their items to sell... regardless of the season!

Be Creative with Your Photos

I found an interesting way of telling a story... or illustrating a story... or several other fun ways to share information with text and photos. It's called scrapblog ( Their blog describes the product well...
Scrapblog is a free, web-based service for creating and sharing digital scrapbooks.
There are templates to help you start with simple contextual sets of instructions as you go through the building process. You can watch videos, too.

You get to play with photos, stickers, backgrounds, text and balloons, shapes, video, and frames. I used only the free ones, but some of the others were certainly tempting. After making choices of photos or stickers or shapes or whatever you can change your mind and revise your scrapbook. You are not locked into your choices.

I found many articles about the company and the product on the web... and they all seem to be positive.

An online scrapbook would be an interesting way to summarize and then publicize a field trip or a school year. A digital scrapbook would be a great way to invite parents to an open house or a school play. Whether you and your students are into scrapbooking or digital storytelling or just having fun with photos and video and audio, this application is worth investigating.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Photography Resolution Amended

My daily photo resolution has turned into a weekly photo resolution. Maybe I'll do the daily photo next year. :) This photo shows a restaurant which has played an important role in the history of its town.

Access Music and Sound Clips for Multimedia Projects

I have checked several options for finding sound files to legally use with multimedia projects... without much success. SoundSnap ( looks like it might be the answer. It has 100,000 sound effects and music loops... and was visited by more than 3,000,000 people last year.

I like the fact that SoundSnap is an online platform, so I don't have to download an application. If you consider using SoundSnap, be sure to check the terms of use with respect to age. This is an application for teachers and students 18 or older.

You must create an account to use SoundSnap. With the free account you can download up to five clips each month. There is a charge to download more; however, special rates are available for educators.

The sound files are organized in categories: animals, comic and film, exteriors, house, human, industry and machines, interiors, multimedia, music loops, music samples, nature, science fiction, sound art, sports, transport, and unreal ambiances. You can also find sounds you want to use through a search feature.

As I've tried other sources of sounds and music, I've found it challenging to find sounds and music that I like. Maybe it's my taste! But, it's been frustrating. I like what I'm finding at SoundSnap.

Check this music: click here!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Finding New Web 2.0 Websites

I love shopping in office supplies stores. It's fun to find colorful, useful tools to use when working. Nowadays we often do our shopping online... and some of my new "tools" are web 2.0 websites. I have favorites (and I may list them in a future post), but I always enjoy checking out new sites.

If you, too, enjoy looking for new tools, you may find Web 2.0 Tools and Applications a fun... and useful... place to explore.

Photography Resolution Amended

I couldn't resist taking a photo of these two horses who were enjoying a Sunday afternoon as we were on a Sunday drive. They stood as still as statues except when you saw a tail swing at some insects!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Prepare for Constitution Day

Constitution Day is celebrated in the USA on September 17. If you're looking for useful materials about the Constitution, you will be pleased to know that TeachersFirst has reviewed a very good site which provides Constitution resources for educators. You'll find lesson plans and activities in the links for teachers and students of all grade levels.

This site was created by the National Constitution Center, so it should be accurate and filled with good ideas! You'll find realtime and virtual activities, free materials and others that you can buy, games, lesson plans, and podcasts.

Check out this site at

Constitution Center, Philadelphia, PA, USA / CC BY 2.0

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Fields Still Amaze Me

I grew up in the city. So, large fields that seem to stretch on and on still amaze me. I haven't figured out yet what this particular crop is. It seems to have lots of little white blossoms. I didn't do anything to adjust the photo. It was just a bright sunny day and great for taking pictures.

One thing I've noticed as I've started taking photos again... I'm not going to be taking photos everyday for the remainder of the year as I started back in January. That was fun, but I have too many other projects going on to do that at the moment. So, for now, it's once a week.