How are they relevant to your community at large, outside of school?
How are emerging tech trends relevant to my library, clasroom and school community?
What trends do I feel are most important?
What challenges and opportunities do these technologies represent?
For starters, I watched the two videos posted by Polly - "Amazing Mind Reader Reveals His 'Gift'" and "Jigsaw: for 8-10 year olds" by The Child Exploitation and Online Protection Center. These are each great for showing to my students according to their grade level to introduce the topic of digital citizenship and create a felt need.
What is Digital Citizenship?
"The ability to use digital technology and media in safe, responsible and effective ways" ("8 Digital Life Skills All Children Need - And a Plan for Teaching Them").
Why Teach Digital Citizenship?
What Should Instruction on Digital Citizenship Include?
(list from Teacher's Guide to Digital Citizenship)
Resources I Want to Use with My Students?
After exploring multiple options for teaching Digital Citizenship, I chose the following because they seemed easy to implement and included interactive features that would catch the students' attention.
Are there games to help teach Digital Citizenship?
Exploring the topic of digital citizenship allowed me to organize my thoughts and curate the resources that I want to use with my students!
Games are a great way to teach, record and review information or assess learning. I foresee using games to help students record learning or review a topic. Also I would like to use games to determine what the students have successfully learned and target areas that need reinforcement.
This had a lot of features that I liked:
Here is my sample Quizlet which I built around a unit we are currently doing with the 3rd grade on the Sun, Moon, and Earth entitled 3rd Grade Solar System.
My goal for this "thing" is to learn tricks and tips related to Google searches, Google Docs, and Google Apps for Education.
From Polly's curated list of many wonderful options, I chose to explore the following:
Gale Databases Integrate Google Apps for Education
Gale has made it possible to save articles from some of their databases directly to Google Docs and Google Classroom. This is a great feature that allows students to gather database resources (complete with citations!) in Google Docs and then do a close reading of the document, adding comments, paraphrasing/summarizing in the document, work on it as a group with a shared document, etc. Teachers can easily insert documents in Google Classroom assignments or announcement. I tried it and it worked for me!
Teacher Zen with Google: 50+ Tips, Tools, & Apps
From this web article I learned two helpful things: 1) how to manage my web extensions by going to "window" on my chrome browser and then choosing "extensions;" 2) Students have to be 13+ to use Google+ including Google HangOuts.
6 Steps to Teaching Students to Search
Loved the simplicy of this suggested list of 6 things to teach students to do when searching. I think it does have to be about this simple or students get overwhelmed. This has inspired me to come up with my own top things to teach. However, I think the whole topic of web site credibility is big and should be covered separately.
Google for Teachers: 100+ Tricks
Didn't find much new here.
15 Must-Have Google Lesson Plans to Teach Students Effective Search Skills
Google offers 5 lesson plans on 3 levels (15 total) to teach effective search skills. The beginning lesson requires two 50-minute lessons, complete with learning standards and embedded lesson slide presentations and videos. The standards for the Beginner Lesson 1 were for 5th, 6th and 8th grade, and the lessons seemed a little advanced/long for my elementary population. However, I could borrow materials from it and simplify it.
Do Your Students Know How to Search?
Loved this quote: "Teachers – especially in the elementary grades -need to develop a shared vocabulary around the skill of searching. They need to make sure their students learn some basic search strategies and keep applying them until they become almost automatic." Appreciated the information provided here addressing searching on a deeper level - primary sources, search bubbles, country searches to get global perspectives, etc. Best find: a video explaining how to use Google News to find primary sources. I learned that newspaper articles can be considered primary sources if the articles are written at the time the event occurred.
Digital storytelling is a passion of mine, so I'm exploring digital storytelling again this year. This time I'm trying out StoryJumper to compare it to Storybird.
First off, I like StoryJumper's StoryStarter workbook--a lesson plan for teachers to use in teaching the story writing process. It includes great ideas and a worksheet for students to use to pre-plan 7 story elements: character, challenge, motivation, setting, obstacles, climax, and outcome.
Another StoryJumper feature I like is the ability to translate any of the stories into multiple languages. Given that we are the largest bilingual elementary school in the Rochester City School District, that is a great plus!
StoryJumper allows you to upload photos which is something my students wished they could do when using StoryBird. They did not like being limited to just the StoryBird art. StoryJumper includes background scenes as an option which is nice. Also, StoryJumper works for both fiction and nonfiction writing, whereas the art in StoryBird only works for fiction writing.
Storybird allows a maximum of 2 people to collaborate (on picture books, not chapter books), with the collaborators taking turns at editing the story. By contrast, StoryJumper allows the teacher to set up a "Group Book" with multiple collaborators.
Storybird has the option for students to log in via their Google account which is helpful since our students use Google classroom and that log-in frequently. I did not see that option with StoryJumper.
StoryJumper has the added feature of a class timer which means that the students are automatically logged off when the class time ends. The purpose for this feature is to preclude students who share computers from accessing other students' StoryJumper accounts and changing or deleting a story.
All StoryJumper books are private by default and can only be shared with the parents and classmates from what I can tell. By contrast, student Storybird stories are private but can be embedded into a blog. I do understand the issue of student privacy; however, I think that students are more motivated by projects when there is a wider audience than just their classmates and parents.
Below are two examples. The first is a book created in Storybird by one of my students. The second is a quick nonfiction book I started in StoryJumper.
In conclusion, there are a lot of good features to StoryJumper, so I think I'll try using it instead of Storybird next time I do digital storytelling with my students.
The students in grades 3-6 in our school all have Chromebooks, and the teachers are encouraged to use Google Classroom with their students. In library class, we like to use Google Slides a lot as a repository and showcase of student learning.
For that reason, I was drawn to the link in this lesson for "Adding Audio Files to Google Drive." That link took me to YouTube and more related videos on the topic. I found "Narration Over Google Slides" which shows how to use Snagit to narrate a Google Slides presentation.
I had to use some work-arounds, but here's the end product and the steps I took:
The downside to this method is that I couldn't get Snagit to just capture the presentation. The video image shows my browser windows and the slides navigation bar.
1: What did I learn?
From the wonderful list of productivity tools to try out, I initially chose Airdrop. I could have used it recently when I was trying to upload videos from my iPad to my blog! (I ended up using Dropbox.) However, I discovered that my iPad was not new enough and the operating system on my Mac was not compatible for using Airdrop.
Next I went to the Google Drive voice typing tool which seemed like it would be helpful for some of my self-contained classroom students and bilingual students. It was so easy to use! I slowly read the blurb off of a book, speaking the punctuation, and it was quite accurate. I even tried speaking a few words in Spanish, and was delighted to see that Google differentiated between Spanish spoken in a variety of countries. I can't wait to try it with my students.
Next I revisited Evernote and Zotero both which I looked into last year. I think they are fantastic tools but require that you consistently invest time using them to gain fluency.
One thing that I knew I wanted help with was quickly citing Creative Commons licensed images. We use them all the time in student projects, but citing them can be a laborious. Zotero to the rescue! This YouTube video (created by a librarian!) shows how quick and easy it is to save the image to Zotero then drag the description into a word processing document where it magically transforms into a citation. To chose the Citation Style, you go to Settings > Preferences > Export. This will be a tremendous time-saver.
I decided to explore Snagit because it's free, works on both Macs and PCs, and integrates seamlessly with Google Classroom. Everything captured with Snagit automatically saves to your Google Drive which makes it a breeze to use in Google Classroom.
i started by reading a blogpost entitled Snagit for Chrome and Google Classroom. Next I downloaded the TechSmith Snagit Extension and watched 2 videos about Assigning Snagit for Chrome Captures in Google Classroom and Assigning Snagit for Chrome Screencasts in Google Classroom.
Finally, I created a Screencast for a project I am doing with my 4th-grade library students using Storybird.com.
As a librarian, I am interested in curation for three purposes:
1. to organize, store and retrieve information that I collect for professional and personal use.
2. to provide a service to my teaching colleagues.
3. to teach my students how to gather, evaluate, store and share information.
So I was eager to read the ALA Library Technology Report on Social Media Curation by Joyce Valenza et. al., chapter 4 (Curation in School Libraries) and chapter 8 (Curation Platforms) in particular.
Some wonderful benefits of curation:
Looking over the platforms listed in the ALA Report, I realized that I had dabbled in many already: Zotero, Flikr, YouTube, Vimeo, Symbaloo, SlideShare, LibGuides, Blogging, Wikis, Twitter, Evernote, Diigo, Google+ and Pinterest!
Because I have barely used Pinterest and a colleague uses it for curating, I chose to pursue Pinterest. First I read 20 Top Pinterest Tips and attached the Pinterest add-on to my browser. I then created a Pinterest board for my 5th-6th Grade Suggested Reading List.
Recently a reading teacher and I were discussing book suggestions for her 5th & 6th Grade Reading Club. I emailed her my suggestions but told her that I was in the process of creating a Pinterest board with the titles. Her eyes lit up! Next time I will be ready! Also, I'm thinking that using the Pinterest board would be a great way to book talk selected titles with book trailers and author interviews embedded along with the book cover images.