Friday, July 25, 2008

Final Reflections

We selected the wiki platform for our project because it allowed us to embed digital images, links, text, podcasts, polls, and search engines; to organize our information using Web pages and a navigation bar; to allow members to create content using discussion tabs; and to limit content creation to members. And it was all free without ads! Digital images and podcasts were selected to generate greater appeal. Internal links were used to provide easier navigation that members expect. External links were used to supplement the information we provided. A poll was used to allow members to influence book selection. A custom search engine was used to make searching easier and safer. Together, this technology allows members to share their thoughts and encourage reading.

School libraries need to go where students are, online, and provide the kinds of services students are already getting elsewhere. This can be accomplished via tools such as wikis and blogs which allow students to read and create information and share it online. Students can now also collaborate online on projects using tools such as Google Docs. This can be done conveniently at any computer, anywhere. It can be done synchronously with tools such as Skype or asynchronously with tools like Blogger. Social networking tools such as Teacher-Librarian and Twitter also make it easy for school media specialists to share information and ideas and to learn the most recent developments.

The podcasts we created were posted on the Podomatic Web site. One problem with this is that I was unable to listen to these podcasts whenever the Podomatic server was down. Another concern I have is that some of the tools we used may start to charge fees for their services once they become more popular.

The wiki platform allowed us to complete our project asynchronously from 3 different locations. We were able to view each others’ work and give and receive feedback via email. This allowed us to collaborate on any new issues that arose after our initial meeting during the class. The only drawback to this was that we had to wait for everyone to check their email before receiving responses.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Social Networking Web20 Style

Social Networking is a good way to network with others in a more formal way. With the ease of Internet communication, it is possible to follow others and share information about the areas of one's interest. It's easy to find others to follow and become friends with. There are also groups that I can join. I can also post questions and hope that others will have an answer. This is possible with nings like Classroom 20 and Twitter.

With Librarything, I can focus on books by sharing what I'm reading and have read. I can also write reviews of what I've read. I can even share this on my Blog! I can also follow what other members are reading and join groups. I can find others who are reading books that I've read, and see what else they're reading. This feature could be used to share with students who are looking for similar works to read.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Delicious Possibilities

Delicious can be used to find Web sites that others have thought were good. It can be searched by tag name, for example Web20. The other advantage of Delicious is that the bookmarks can be shared with others and can be accessed from any computer. School libraries can use Delicious to find good Web sites used by other schools for their Web site. It can also be used to share Web sites with other school libraries.

Blue hills

Blue hills
Originally uploaded by michaeljgut
Flickr is a good tool to share photos with anyone. It has many privacy features so only the people you want will be able to see them. Photos from creative commons could be used to introduce a topic as part of a lesson, or as a writing prompt. It is important not to put photos of anyone on Flickr without their permission. Even if Flickr is blocked by a school, it is still possible to use photos from it to place on the school's Web site.

Flickr could also be used to share pictures with other SLMS to give ideas of how something was being used, for example bulletin boards, slide shows and media center layout.

Once photos are on Flickr, they can be used by many other Web sites to create images of magazine covers, calendars, and many others.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Web 2.0 Readings

The latest tools now available through the Internet are changing the definition of information literacy. In order to succeed in today's world, students and others need to learn these tools. One of the main advantages of Web 2.0 tools is that they allow students to be more active and to interact with others. The Internet has made the world flat, so students can interact now with people anywhere in the world who have an Internet connection.

The speed with which Web 2.0 tools are being enhanced, as well as with which new tools are being developed, requires frequent monitoring to stay up to date. This can be accomplished simply by monitoring the blogs of others who are sharing this information.

Web 2.0 tools can be taught as part of projects in collaboration with teachers or only as part of the school library instruction. It is important to show teachers the advantages of Web 2.0 tools. Web 2.0 tools can make learning more enjoyable for students. It is important to keep up with students' knowledge of technology and ideally to stay ahead.

Blogging Benefits

Blogging is a way for students to publish on the Internet. This helps motivate students to do their best work since anyone will be able to see it. Students can also post blogs even if they are unable to come to school. Blogging can also be done without paper. Teachers are able to comment on students' blogs and give immediate feedback.

Blogging is a way to tell anyone what you are doing, and to find out what others are doing. Blogging is different from email since it is up to others to read your blog, you don't have to know their email address! By subscribing to blogs of those who share their latest discoveries one can learn better ways to do ones work.