Friday, March 28, 2008

The Google Suite at SAD#48

Wow . . . you have to see this! Kern Kelley has posted on the Tech Curve the work of students at his school called GOOGLE: Overview of the Google Suite of Online Applications. Note that the e-book was published through ISSUU which has many interesting features indeed. I'm guessing it was created using Comic Life, but would love to have the creators comment on the process they used in developing this handy tutorial. Impressive!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Maine Community Heritage Project

Promoting Community through the Exploration of Local History


Library of Congress Online: Teaching with Primary Sources Regional Conference

My name is Sue Wise and I am the Associate Director of the Eastern Regional Teaching with Primary Sources (TPS) Partnership. The Library of Congress initiated the Teaching with Primary Sources educational outreach program for the purpose of encouraging and enhancing the use of Library of Congress primary source documents across all levels of education, but particularly within K-16 classrooms. As the Eastern Regional TPS Partnership, Waynesburg University is charged with spreading the word about the TPS program throughout the states in the northeast, from Maine through West Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia.

You are invited to participate in this inaugural event marking the commencement of the Library of Congress' Teaching with Primary Sources (TPS) national educational outreach program. As the Eastern Regional TPS partner, Waynesburg University is kicking off this expansion of the program with a conference to discuss opportunities for you to engage fellow educators to incorporate the Library's vast resources across the curriculum. We sincerely hope you can attend.

Library of Congress Online: Teaching with Primary Sources 2008 Eastern Regional Conference

  • May 21 and 22, 2008
  • Free conference!
  • Grant opportunities up to $15,000
  • Travel stipend available upon application approval
  • Waynesburg University (60 miles south of Pittsburgh, PA)

Learn about grant opportunities to integrate primary sources into professional development, educational outreach programs and school district curricula.
Meet Library of Congress educational outreach leaders.
Benefit from nationally-known education experts like Mary McFarland.

Questions? Interested, but unable to attend?
Call or email: 724.852.3377
Barbara Kirby, Director
Sue Wise, Associate Director

Apply today to join us for this exciting opportunity!

Please distribute the enclosed information to fellow educators. Web posting, email, newsletter or hardcopy distribution would be helpful.


“When life hands you lemons, make lemonade and lemon pie, ... That may sound trite, yet what I mean is that when something happens that takes you down a different road than you had planned, you need to take control of the situation and turn it into something positive. What may look like a catastrophe can end up being a wonderful opportunity.”
~ Anne White
The March 2008 edition of the Maine Townsman has an article title "Small Towns Respond to Population Decline" which looks into what is happening, what the ramifications are, and what changes are being looked at to adapt to population decline in many small Maine towns.

We often hear of the virtues of growth. If the rules of supply and demand apply, might there ultimately be advantages in staying small?

Photo Source:

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Innovation Fatigue

"I think there’s a larger, underlying issue here: ‘innovation fatigue.’ School districts keep rolling out new programs / paradigms that aren’t well thought out, understood, or supported. Teachers rationally get tired and skeptical after years of this. And then we outside folks roll in saying ‘here’s the next big thing!’ and their eyes begin to roll back in their heads…"
~Scott McLeod
Anyone experience this?

Photo Credit:

Monday, March 24, 2008

Making Movies is easy...Producing them is harder

by Ed Latham

Way back, almost a decade ago, I had the opportunity to attend a Mac Expo and it was great fun. Of particular interest at the Expo was a very early version of iMovie. They sat us down and showed us how to make a movie by simply clicking and dragging with none of that nasty time stop or frame rate issues other programs at the time may have had. It was so much fun and it seemed young and old alike could be cranking out their own home movies with ease.

I have heard all the banter about how the recent version of iMovie is less user friendly than the version that was on the image last year. Using my MacBook and some 6th grade students I thought I would take it for a ride to find out how easy/hard it could be. It did take us some time as the interface is not as easy as some other programs. In the end we had a decent public service announcement ready to go to the local channel except that the MacBook does not have a DVD burner installed? I frantically searched help files, played with different export settings, and even tried some meditation on top of a freezing hill in the middle of a snow storm ... nothing helped me figure out how to share with the world this production created so simply.

During the production, the students and I ran into frequent compatibility issues with sound and graphic files. iMovie would take jpg files but not gif. It would take some audio files but not others. To finally end the process without the ability to crank out a DVD with the MLTI shipped computers was very frustrating. Why is iDVD on there if you can't use it without subscribing to a service or buying new hardware? Maybe I just need someone more experienced to share with me how I messed up and what I might do differently in the future.

In the meantime, I copied all the pictures and audio files from our project and brought them over to my PC. Within an hour I had the entire production recreated and was even able to use the graphic and sounds we were not able to use in iMovie. I suppose it is always easier to go with what you know, but I ask those more experienced than I...."Given the high school teacher's MLTI Macbooks, how do teachers take a movie made in iMovie, mash it through iDVD somehow to get the movie to the public without having to subscribe to some pay service or buy new hardware?" I am anxious to learn new things so please share what you know. In the meantime, I will go share our finished DVD with the kids.

A Vision of K-12 Students Today

Here is the latest iteration of the 21st Century Learner vids:

David Warlick asks, "What would YOU have them say?"