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Qik, ipadio, Purple…

http://remc11.files.wordpress.com/2008/08/weeklywebwonders_400.jpg?w=468
Lots of information to share from last week’s MACUL conference.

http://remc11.files.wordpress.com/2008/08/www_bullet.jpg?w=468Berrien RESA is collaborating with Kalamazoo RESA and Calhoun ISD to offer an exciting new program: 21 Things for the 21st Century Educator.  This program combines online resources with live web conferencing to help teachers gain skills using new technology tools. We will be hosting a face to face kickoff at Berrien RESA on Tuesday, April 20 from 4:00 – 6:00.  All participants will need to register through Calhoun ISD: http://pdreg.calhounisd.org.  Credit available: 4 graduate credits or 12 SB-CEUs.

http://remc11.files.wordpress.com/2008/08/www_bullet.jpg?w=468I really liked ipadio.  It’s a site that lets you record using your phone…then posts that recording online for you or anyone to listen to.  It’s free and easy. Record homework, assignments, instructions, greetings, sub plans…you name it!

http://remc11.files.wordpress.com/2008/08/www_bullet.jpg?w=468If you have a phone that shoots video, you should take a look at Qik.  With Qik, you can broadcast live from your phone over the Internet.  It’s one of those clever tools they’re making these days.

http://remc11.files.wordpress.com/2008/08/www_bullet.jpg?w=468For students who need help with Algebra take a look at Purplemath.  Not sure why algebra is purple…it makes most people see red.

http://remc11.files.wordpress.com/2008/08/www_bullet.jpg?w=468The History Channel is providing a DVD copy of America The Story of US to every school in the nation.  “premiering on April 25 at 9pm/8c — America The Story of US is a six week event that provides a fascinating look at the stories of the people, events, and innovations that forged our nation.

NECC Session: It’s in Your Pocket: Teaching Spectacularly with Cellphones

NECC Program Description

I didn’t attend Liz Kolb‘s cell phone session, partly because it was a hands-on session (and packed) and my cell phone doesn’t do much and also because I invited her to present at our TechCamp event in August. I heard a gal in front of me yesterday practically giddy about Liz’s presentation, so I’m really looking forward to TechCamp!

So now I’m sitting in Hall Davidson’s session…I can listen and not have to participate with my worthless phone since we’re in an auditorium. Hall is always entertaining and I’m sure I’ll be able to snag a few bits of information from him.

If you have a cell phone, you have a…

  • Telephone
  • Text Messenger
  • Still Camera
  • Video Camera
  • Video Viewer
  • Podcaster
  • GPS
  • Music Player

There really shouldn’t be a discussion on “should we ban phones?” That really shouldn’t be a question…they are here! Parents are ultimately the ones who are determining if kids are going to have phones…they can monitor what their kids are up to in a number of ways. They love that! So cell phones aren’t going anywhere…

Cell phones sound a lot like the way things were when the web showed up…”this thing won’t take off!” There are 3.3 billion working cell phones on the planet…that’s half the world’s population! Who has them? Tons in the third world…who forbids them? The Taliban and your local high school.

What can you do with a cell phone?

  • Watch live IP security cameras from anywhere
  • Create and upload videos…so post a video to Youtube of yourself giving instructions to the sub…post updates of news and events
  • Send video messages out to the community…like a voice message alert system

What else? You can call Jott and convert a voice message to text. For example, call in and Jott to email, blogs, twitter, etc. Another option is to translate languages…if you can go from voice to text, and you can go from text to translation, then you can go from voice to translation.

Gcast is a free service that allows users to call in their podcasts…basically sharing voicemails online with anyone. Of course you can subscribe to the updates via an RSS reader or podcast aggregator. Another choice is to call the teacher’s Gcast account to leave an answer to a question…sweet.

If you want to get some information use PollEverywhere. Participants can text their responses in and we can watch the responses in real time. The graph is extremely interactive…kind of makes some of the response systems used in schools now obsolete…well, unnecessary. PollEverywhere lets you export responses into Excel…nice. You can also text in messages and they drop right into the screen…right now. Very sweet for collaboration…everyone can put in their two cents. This is probably one of the best applications I’ve seen so far this week.

Where can we go from here. Hall suggests that teachers can find relevant, important uses for cellphones and has challenged everyone to be ready to try out new applications and strategies for using these interactive peices of hardware.

TechCamp Spotlight: From Toy to Tool with Liz Kolb

This is a sweet piece of information…TechCamp welcomes Liz Kolb on Wednesday, August 20.  Liz is an up and coming name in instructional technology whose focus is on using cell phones as tools in the classroom.  Here’s the description for her soon-to-be-available book, Toys to Tools.

Toys for Tools discuses how to enhance learning by using the powerful technology of cell phones both inside and outside the classroom. Many, if not most, educators view cell phones as the enemy. Author Liz Kolb sees them as powerful technology in the hands of students. Acknowledging the current reality-at many schools ban student cell phone use in the classroom-Kolb discusses a host of innovative and highly interesting uses for the technology that do not require using the phones in the classroom.

You can explore what Liz’s message is all about by visiting her From Toy to Tool blog.  There she highlights new applications and strategies for using cell phones…toys tools that have become standard issue equipment for today’s adolescents.

Liz will be speaking during Wednesday’s lunch and will follow up her presentation with a hands-on session.  I’ll be posting more details soon.  Make sure to bring your phone!!  Go online to register for TechCamp now!

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