These are my notes from a presentation titled “Go Digital to Revolutionize Learning” on February 2, 2008, at the Oklahoma 2008 State Superintendent’s Social Studies and Fine Arts Conference. The theme of this year’s conference is, “Revolutionary Matters.” This presentation by Cheryl McInnis from Mustang Public Schools has the following description in the conference program:

Engage your studetns with lessons that show and tell about the world by using digital images, Web 2.0, and the latest software and hardware. Google Earth, MovieMaker, and tablet personal computers are jsut a few of the components. See how yu and your students can create presentations that revolutionize learning.

I am recording this session with permission from Cheryl and will be sharing this subsequently as a podcast here.

Our students are digital natives
– instead of banning cell phones, we should utilize them as learning tools
VoiceThread is a great tool for digital storytelling

We must teach students how to locate and evaluate information. You can’t Google everything!

As a library media specialist, this is one of my battles in life
– many students don’t want to go to any resource other than Google

We don’t know if Google is true or not
– we must verify it

Article in the Oklahoman “Sorting Out the Truth”
– “The beauty and bane of our multimedia world is that anyone can say anything about anyone…”

How many of you are familiar with SIRS
– state of Oklahoma has paid for 2 main databases to be available to all libraries in the state
– these cost thousands of dollars
SIRS Discoverer on the Web (from ProQuest)

if you see something on the Internet, fine, but double check it

This is paid for by the state legislature (SIRS Discoverer)
– tell your legislators about this!

Also EBSCO, like SIRS but a bit more mature
– used more in high school or college

Cobblestone is elementary but can be used in middle school too
– a great history magazine

to show kids the difference between Google, EBSCO, and Google
– I give them a magazine like National Geographic or Cobblestone, and have students go find it online
– Then we discuss the difference between a scholarly work and source

EBSCO has a lot of primary sources, can limit to magazines, newspapers, books and encyclopedias, primary source documents, more

page given to all teachers: Mustang North Databases
– these databases are also available to the students at home
– schools have

Also the Oklahoman Archives are WONDERFUL
– these are provided for free by Devon Energy
– I talk about this in terms of “time travel” going back to the archives
– goes back to 1901
– easy for kids to get their birthdate
– this is just the archive of the daily Oklahoman
– can search in ten year increments also
– students cannot get the Oklahoman Archives at home like they can with SIRS or EBSCO unless their parents are patrons of the Metro Library System

How many of you:
– Have your own projectors?
– are using United Streaming Video?

How many of you remember checking out filmstrips “in the day” and not being able to find the “blackline masters?”
– UnitedStreaming is accessible both from home and school, and all the resources are linked
– can embed the links to videos directly within PowerPoint

[I WANT MY OWN CHILDREN TO ATTEND A SCHOOL AND LEARN WITH TEACHERS WHO ARE USING UNITED STREAMING REGULARLY AS A PART OF LEARNING. I WANT MY KIDS TO HAVE IPODS AND USE THEM EVERY WEEK AT SCHOOL FOR LEARNING. THIS IS NOT HAPPENING NOW. HOW GREAT TO HEAR CAROL SHARING ABOUT THIS!]

Also Safari Montage is a similar resource

Both Safari Montage and United Streaming are commercial services

With Safari Montage you have to get a server from them you host locally
– United Streaming does not have that requirement

Now: Pictures, videos and Presentations

Software
Picasa: Free from Google
– we still have some Win98 computers and Picasa works on them
– there are even more features running it on WinXP
– free and runs on Windows
– I have this on all our computers at school
– can straighten, add spot color, or crop images

[IN PICASA FOR WINDOWS VISTA, THERE IS A SLILDE BUTTON THAT LOOKS A LOT LIKE IPHOTO ON MACINTOSH. DOESN’T LOOK LIKE PICASA IS AVAILABLE FOR MAC, BUT IT IS AVAILABLE FOR LINUX ON GOOGLE LABS.]

demo of iGoogle

demo of PhotoStory3
– can output to many formats including cell phones!

mentioned Zamar for free file conversion

demo of Windows MovieMaker

the quality of videos created with a digital camera is actually quite good
– you can rename the clips
– they can be imported directly into MovieMaker
– this can be much more workable/doable than using a camcorder

[I THINK THIS IS REALLY GOOD ADVICE AND SOMETHING I HAVE NOT EMPHASIZED IN MY OWN WORKSHOPS. USING CAMCORDERS IS GREAT FOR HIGHER QUALITY VIDEO PRODUCTIONS, BUT THE TIME AND LOGISTICAL REQUIREMENTS OF WORKING WITH FULL QUALITY DV IS OFTEN OVERKILL FOR CLASSROOM TECHNOLOGY INTEGRATION PROJECTS.]

Demo of Google Earth now – 4.2 update now available!
– includes 3D terrain, space, more!

Cheryl McInnis’ contact info:
– mcinnisc [at] mustangps [dot] org
Mustang Public Schools

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