Monday, August 30, 2010

Why Aren't You Using Twitter?

When was the last time that you collaborated or got an idea from someone outside of your building/district? How do you keep up on current techiques and trends in education? Getting bored with the same old book, lessons, activities, websites, year after year, after year?
I have an answer, Twitter! In my opinion, Twitter is the best professional development I have ever had and I can look at it every day or every other day or whenever I want. I can follow whoever I want and learn from people all over the world. It is as simple as setting up an account and following people who can teach you something.
Here are some Twitter resources for getting started. If you need any help please let me know.

Getting Started with Twitter

Top 50 Educators to Follow on Twitter 2010

A Twitterholic's Guide to Tweets, hashtags and all things Twitter

How to Use Twitter to Grow your PLN

The Ultimate Twitter Guidebook for Teachers

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Comics, Comics, Comics

I have recently found some comic resources and thought that I should post them all together in one post. There are a variety of comic creator and comic book tools available that can be used in the classroom in many different ways.

Pixton, is a comic creator tool. This is my personal favorite. It gives you alot of options and you can really customize the characters on the strip. It allows you to change facial expressions, body positions and more. You can view "how to" videos under the "Welcome" button. You can set up a free account and start creating comics. Great assessment resource alternative to writing, posters, speeches, etc.

40 Best Comic Books for the Classroom, I got this one from one of my Tweeps. Some really cool comics that you probably haven't heard of and some tips on how you might use them in the classroom.

Toondoo, easy to use comic strip creator tool. Allows you to create comic strips easily and for free! Just set up an account and start creating. This is a simple tool and lacks the detail of Pixton but is still a nice change for assessment in your class.

Stripcreator, a simple comic creator that is limited on options but gets the job done.

Artisan Cam is more than just a comic creator, it is a comprehensive collection of online art activities. On Artisan Cam students can use the Super Action Comic Maker to build a six frame comic. The Super Action Comic Maker has a drag and drop interface which students use to select a background and character for their comics.
On Artisan Cam students can also try virtual sculpting, jewelry design, and card making.

PikiKids provides a variety of layouts to which students can upload images then edit the images or add text bubbles and titles. The comics that students create can be embedded into a blog or website as well as be shared via email.

Friday, August 20, 2010

FR Tech Boot Camp

We had a great two days of technology training and camaraderie. A special thanks goes to all who attended and participated in the workshops. Maureen Garda, Kristin Giron, Lisa Stewart and myself really enjoyed sharing and learing with our FR tribe. We had sessions on Moodle, Google Docs, Google Tools, Activinspire, Microsoft Office, Twitter/Blogs, Elementary Resources and Top Tech Tools. Check out the Boot Camp Resource page on the FR Moodle site under K12 General/Tech Boot Camp 2010.

We appreciate the efforts of our professionals here at Franklin Regional in attending these trainings on the last two days of their summer vacation! You are truly dedicated professionals interested in changing the way you teacher to improve your students chance of success in a quickly changing global economy. I know how difficult it is to make the decision to change. If I can help with anything please let me know.

Always good to add something from Sir Ken!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

You Can't Be My Teacher

Interesting video about the need for teachers to be familiar with how to use the Internet for instruction. You Can't Be My Teacher features a young student asking the questions all teachers should be answering.

Beyond the Search: Google Tools

Here is the Google Presentation that we used at the Westmoreland Intermediate Unit this summer for our workshop.