Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Pathfinder tutorials

Hi, can anyone give me some hints about good sources for ideas for pathfinder activities or tutorials for using print reference collections? I found some good ones here. Maybe it will be useful to someone else. We beginners are searching and practicing all of the time. Thanks in advance to anyone that responds.

Randy de Jong

Future LMT

I know enough to know I don't know enough.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Practice to see if I can answer a question

I am trying to see if I can publish duplicate images and find the easiest way to delete the unwanted images. I am still experimenting, now to upload a second copy of the same image.

I was successful. I added the same picture. I went into edit html and deleted one of the pictures. The html designation for the picture is found between the "less than carot (<)followed by "a" and the greater than carot (>) followed by "a". The top sequence of code matches the top picture and the next batch the next picture etc. I highlighted the code for the picture I wanted to delete. This is basic for many but was an experiment for me. I tried to write it as you would see it, but it would leave the example blank because it really didn't represent an image. Write me an email if you need me to try to send it via email that is not in actual html. dejongster@mchsi.com

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Week #9 Thing #23

This course will continue to be an good experience. Thing #23 has just become a temporary resting point before continuing the journey. I have enjoyed and needed the opportunity to learn what is out in cyberspace. I had seen many of these tools in use, but didn't know how to harness them. Most of the course took me to places to become "almost proficient" and then gave me latitude to choose to "make do" or explore and learn more.

I think the course was very helpful. I have gained a great deal of knowledge about blogging and the many potential uses associated with a blog. I entered the course with the desire to find a specific end result for my own need (how to use a blog for a reference log). I have gotten all my answers and so much more. Thank you for sharing the guideposts that allowed me to navigate the course.

Randy de Jong, future librarian

I know enough to know I don't know enough.

Week #9 Thing #22

I have been impressed with the number of free or reduced prices for ebooks and the number of formats available. There is enough free material available to last a lifetime practically. I am amazed at some of the human voice recordings of some of the audio books. The computer generated are distracting and obnoxious to listen to them. I can see a great deal of value for ELL students with the audio books. They would gain a great deal listening to the book alone or while following along with a print version. I realize the audio books are also useful for those with limited time that use an audio book while driving or multi-tasking. I would be concerned that it might cut into our pool of readers. Perhaps the research has shown how it has strengthened the readers in the younger generations. The audio format may also be a springboard for the reluctant reader or those that are challenged by reading.Ebooks will never replace a print format in my mind because it is really hard to curl up with an exciting computer. Noe it may be more feasible if you can curl up with a PDA or an IPod. As long as snacks are available, the reading will go on. I was very surprised to see free ebooks written by Edgar rice Burroughs. His writing is a challenge to many of today's students, but he a=is a classic author that will build any student's reading abilities with practice. I used tread his books to my 7th grade reading classes as a treat. I started reading them at 5 or 6 years old. Never a dull moment. This is the greatest site to find free books: http://manybooks.net/

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Week #9 Thing 21 (part 2)

I have added a feed to Google Reader; it is Tech on the Fly. I hope to get a better understanding of the technology that is available. I will monitor it for a while and then decide if it is worth keeping. I am realizing that many of the available podcasts are a number of months old and not as recent as I had hoped they would be. While playing with adding this to my RSS reader, I did see a great article that helped me understand the concept of open sources and tools. I still need to learn more. (Is there an echo in here? I seem to hear that repeatedly in posts on dejongsplace. Someone should talk to that guy.)
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Week #9 Thing #21 (part 1)

I enjoyed discovering podcasts. I found some things interesting but not of great use personally. I will probably find other podcasts that will be of greater interest through further exploration. I came across many that would not boot up on my system for whatever reason. I had others that came right up. I downloaded a player from Yahoo. I found PodcastAlley to be a waste of time since I could not locate any way to register for the site. I did attempt to play some of the podcasts without any success on all that I tried. I will go back and see if I can get them to work. I even tried to go to some of the recommended sites to download players that would work, but none would respond. I assume it was because I could not log in as a registered user. Some of the sites would be useful for library patrons seeking information or viewpoints about many subjects. Most of what I heard did not give much authentication or validation. Some were silly, homemade, humorous playing around from kids. Each feed would have to be evaluated by the librarian and/or patron to determine aplicability. I know from personal experience about some of the podcasts about other topics such as fishing. I have heard them before but had not realized they were podcasts. They came through on my Windows Media Player. Many seemd to come through the Yahoo tool and some came through the media player. It must have something to do with how they were created or the file type. So much to explore.I had to play around with the background color just to see how it would come out when posted. LOL

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No Week, Voice Thread

I just got an email from Connie that included this site in the samples of text editing she had included. Voice Thread: http://www.voicethread.com/ I went and explored. It has so many possibilities in many classes and especially in language or foreign language classes. Here are some of the thoughts that I will cut and paste from her sample in my email. I am too lazy to retype them.

http://dejongsplace.blogspot.com/2007/06/week-3-thing-6-plus-curriculum.htmlCWilliams I just heard about a great new site from one of the 2.0 participants! This one can mix photos with voices. There are a MILLION things you could do with this in the classroom and library - Here's my first "out of the bag" thoughts:1. oral history - post a photo and have people comment on what it means to them [ a photo of classmates, a building, an event, a family....]2. Language Arts - reading poetry as in the example on the tutorial, book talking and showing the cover of the book, putting on an action video and describing the action.3. a power point presentation - each slide could have the accompanying voice over.Here's the site: http://www.voicethread.com/

I can imagine the usage to prepare students for the oral or quick response part of the foreign language AP tests. It gives me, as the teacher, the chance to concentrate on the verbal aspects of their speech. It helps with pronunciation. There will be another value apparent as they become accustomed to speaking into a microphone. I am grateful to Connie and CWilliams.


Week #9 Thing #20

YouTube is a rather interesting site. It has a great deal of potential-good and bad. I can see a definite place in education, but am not sure how to monitor it. OOPS! Will this touch upon freedom of information, intellectual freedom, or censorship? Probably. What a fine line and now to see if we can manage the tightrope act 1000' up. Now to experiment with a few valuable inserts. (Beware! I have no clue about embedding anything in my blog, or using html code or editing.)

Super Librarian: Here is a scene that shows just all we librarians are made of and what we can do-

It looks like it may have worked. This is now bringing out the possibility of using a site similar to YouTube etc. for informational, humorous, tutorial videos etc. It looks like a tool to help students with projects that can span and cross the curriculum. I have seen a few videos that were interesting and gave a fun presentation to a high school library. I will have to put on my thinking cap and plan a multimedia presentation for my library orientations. there are many possibilities. Once again the main limiting factor is "TIME". Where do we get all that we need and still read, catalog, weed, teach, interact, collaborate, and have a life, besides doing courses to improve our knowledge and skills? I still have a lot to explore.

Week #8 Thing #19

I have been exploring Library thing. It is very interesting. I had hoped it would also have a Dewey Classification tool. I didn't find it..YET. If someone has discovered this tool, I would love to know. I added about 14-16 books to my personal library. It is simple to do and allows tags, ratings, and reviews. this may be a good place to to research reader advisory queries. The tags seem to offer a lot of possibilities if the person adding the book gives a variety of tags to each book. the historical novels by G. A. Henty were part of the listings, but not so very popular. some oh his books do not show publication dates. Some were guesses from other copies listed. There were quite a few of the Gerald Lund series. I realize that I did not label some of the "Work and the Glory " series in the same fashion as others and they do not show up as shared. I checked out the groups. There were none for my books. I did find some groups that were found by indicating related tags. there is still much to learn about the site. I followed up a few links from some of the groups I explored and discovered quite a bit about bloggers and the depth to which they might go and how much they reveal of themselves. I discovered quite a few links to valuable, useless, and unique web sites on some of the blogs.

My library list can be found at the above link or here: http://www.librarything.com/catalog/dejongster

For the curriculum connection, I have no class since it is summer. I will attempt to input and catalog more of my library as I get time.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Blog Week 8 Thing 18

This is my masterpiece using the word processor from Zoho. I should put something very exciting here. Think. Think.! Think.!? Well I thought and I thunk and I am still thunkthinking. I am anxious because I am waiting for a job to be posted officially but haven't seen it fly so far. I saw the original email (to all the librarians in my district from the person leaving the position), now I look at the district posting of open positions every day. I really don't want to miss the opportunity. Now to attempt to link this to my blog at Blogger, dejongsplace.

dejongsplace: Week #8 Thing #18 the Zoho experiment


Week #8 Thing #18 the Zoho experiment

I have explored part of Zoho Writer and found it easy to follow. I saw a link from SLL 2.0 that had a sample document. It mentioned being able to post on Blogger using Zoho Writer. I haven't figured out how to do that yet. I will cut and paste my document. I will also attempt to link my document from Zoho Writer to this blog. Will it work? I don't know, but when it is posted the proof will be in this blog entry (is this a new type of pudding?). I have read that earlier editions of documents can be recalled using Writer. there also seems to be a capability to save your work online and doing away with the need for a flash drive. It seems there is more exploring to do.

I attempted the link. It turned out to only allow me to email the document. I did open the document from the internet. It may solve problems for students at school because it will allow them to work on documents at home and school. this is important because my district does not allow flash drives, cds, or floppies brought from home to be opened on the school's computers. I attempted to use the link line above this post to connect the two documents but only liked to Zoho Writer and a blank document. The document can be located on the left side of the screen in the document archives. I have just discovered how to post from Zoho Writer. It should be on the following entry, I think!?!

Here is a copy of the document from the Zoho Writer:
This is my masterpiece using the word processor from Zoho. I should put something very exciting here. Think. Think.! Think.!? Well I thought and I thunk and I am still thunkthinking. I am anxious because I am waiting for a job to be posted officially but haven't seen it fly so far. I saw the original email (to all the librarians in my district from the person leaving the position), now I look at the district posting of open positions every day. I really don't want to miss the opportunity. Now to attempt to link this to my blog at Blogger, dejongsplace.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Week #7 Thing#18

I have been experimenting with the California Curriculum Connections wiki by adding some ideas for curriculum connections. One that I added is here: Idea: Create a magazine cover to introduce possible projects along the same lines as the articles indicated on the cover. Inside each student could expand on each theme as it related to him or her. This can be applied to almost any subject area. For a sample see: http://dejongsplace.blogspot.com/2007/06/week-3-thing-6-plus-curriculum.html

I also added another about creating a scavenger hunt for practicing path finding when doing research. I have only seen one sandbox item and I have not played there yet, but I guess I will because it is needed. Now, will my entry remain or be erased as in a sandbox with a stiff breeze, a hard rain, or a shuffled foot of a happy child?

I have returned to edit my original post after finding the sandbox-luckily there was no evidence of cats! I did not see a link to the sandbox. I only saw it mentioned as a recently edited page. I also did a search to see if I could find it. I arrived and left my mark. I am unsure if what posterity will see will be what was wanted; but as in a sandbox I played.

Week #7 Thing #17

There are a number of things I learned from the California Curriculum Connections wiki http://calcurriculum.pbwiki.com/. I saw the applications from the PBwiki site. It helped me visualize what I was seeing in the tutorials and sample wikis I had visited. By doing this "thing" I caught the idea of how to add pages and where they appear on the first page. There is much to do. As I went through the various pages for the weekly assignments in the SLL 2.0 program, I enjoyed the added curriculum connections. I am starting my own wiki as a laboratory for my learning. It will be a slow and ongoing process. I will then change it to become a fully functioning wiki as I gain skills and confidence.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Week #7 Thing #16 and curriculum connections

Wikis look interesting. They seem to have many applications from dissemination of information (some seemed more like a simple blog) to internal tools to help an organization meet and deal with communication needs. It seems a blog with specified access would be able to do much of the same. Perhaps the Wiki is simply a blog with almost unlimited access. I will have to look at the other sites more and review more of the information. I was impressed with many because of the vast variety of links and organization they demonstrated. These make me realize that I am going to have to keep working with some of the web tools available. I need to explore more sites beyond those listed. The one fact of this course is that there is too much to be able to know it all. My personal motto and belief is still true and continues to lead me toward life-long learning: I know enough to know I don't know enough.

Many of the wikis demonstrated an interesting method of tying the Internet into the classroom paradigm. It is a great collaborative tool. It allows a way to allow students to work together yet know who has contributed (up to the point shown by the computer via entry tags). It also makes a hard copy of instructions and possible help links available to the students.

Wikis can easily be used if they are allowed under school district acceptable use policies. this is one of the only possible barriers. In my Spanish classes it would be simple to create project wikis for historical or geographical projects involving group work. Each group would have access limited to their group members. Instructions regarding the specifics needed could be listed on the wiki. Each group would have to cite references, both print and non print. They would have to use some of the other tools available to add visuals such as graphs, pictures, maps etc.

They could also use some of the image editing and posting tools to create games or study tools for the class. Each person or group would have their tag on each entry to document participation and achievement.

As a library Media Teacher: this could become a great tool for scavenger hunts, book discussions, even library club presentations, planning and ???????

The only limit is the limit of the imagination and district policy. LOL

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Week #6 Thing #15

I read the following articles regarding Web 2.0: "To More Powerful
Ways to Cooperate" and "To Better Bibliographic Services". In the articles there is a discussion of ways to 'harness collective intelligence" by "[touching] the entire web at the same time". This can and will effect libraries now and in the future. WorldCat seems to play a significant role in the future of libraries. Web 2.0 opens many avenues to increase and improve collaboration and exchange among many and possibly all of the internet community. There are useful and vital sites mentioned such as WorldCat that bring online searches and publishing within the reach of all. The tools that are available are within the abilities of regular people. There are tools to meet most simple publishing needs. A widening of relevence and authority will be forthcoming as things evolve and improve. Interaction is growing between users of information beyond just libraries. Contributors, experts, etc are becoming part of a meta search tool. OCLC (Online Computer Library Center) is an organization that is working to tie libraries and the web into a meaningful and productive union. For more information go to: http://www.oclc.org/default.htm For WorldCat go to: http://www.worldcat.org/

Week #6 Thing #14 Curriculum Connection

I plugged in some tags regarding my political views. I pulled in hits both for and against my position. The best thing was the ability to discover some primary sources directly or by following new tags, links or verbal comment. I realize there is little authority to many blogs, but they often provide the clues to valid, authoritative sources.

Week #6 getting my blogs tagged with technorati tags

I was unable to figure out the html to do this. Can anyone teach me?

Week #6 Thing #14

Exploring Technorati.com is really interesting once you see how well it works and how many options are available. I started the simple exploration of popular blogs. There is (as always) too much to see and to do. I first looked at blogs tied into earning $ from blogs. The old fashioned Edison Light Bulb went off in my head (LOUD DRUM ROLL), "Can I use a blog to generate extra funds for my future library?" An interesting thought for school fundraising. I then saw one entitled simply "43 Folders". I then followed some live links to sites regarding "GTD". This required finding out what the heck GTD meant:Getting Things Done. What a SCORE for me. I am always looking for a way to become more efficient and to beat my distractability. These comments may help me implement some great ideas that mesh with who I am. They may also turn dormant software into productive elements in my day.I was blown away by some of the technical tools in the gadget blogs. I was impressed by Skitch. I need to wait for it to become available for PC. As I explored some of the top searches, I had to retreat very quickly. It is scary to see what some people are searching, or I am too prudish.

Tagging seemed to really open up options for searches and brought to view optional search tags or keywords. It will be a big help up to a point, but it will also have a lot of imprecise hits. The blogs where I followed hot links seemed to be very useful as long as I was selective with my choices. there may be a problem in the public school environment because of the lack of filtering in the search engines. This will probably be overcome by filters in place at the educational sites. Then we reenter the intellectual freedom and censorship debates.

Now to see if I added my blog to technorati's search and tags.

Does anyone have a simple set of instructions to do this? I added the last tag into my Label section in an attempt to do the optional activity of linking my blog into technorati's search engine.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Week #6 thing #13

del.icio.us was a great tool. the tutorial was simple and user friendly. I really enjoyed exploring some of the suggested sites, especially the SJLibraryLearning2 site. there were too many to bookmark of value, so I bookmarked the entire site and a few standouts. I have barely scratched the surface of my exploration. I think it is great to use this to make my favorites available on any computer. I use a variety of computers at home and at school and want to have a quick fix for this. I see it as a possible extension to some searches and finding ideas for a variety of key words, or phrases that may not be the first to come to mind. I liked the note that someone else wrote for one site and chose to copy it for my note. I did sign up and create my own account. I still see the advantage to my regular favorites for the very most used sites on my home computer, but theses will also be included on del.icio.us.

Searchbox tool, help!

What exactly is a searchbox tool? How is it used? What value does it have if you already have a specialized search engine on Rollyo? Rollyo does not give much explanation at all. If we are laypeople, then there needs to be more clarity and direction. Cool tools are only cool if they are understood and usable.

Week #5 Thing #12

I have created an account on Rollyo.com. I began a search engine for World War II because I am working on a project for a reference class. I am curious how you find appropriate search engines without going through the major tools such as Google etc. Where to you find topic specific search engines or tools? Hopefully the team leaders or a brave participant will answer this question in the comment sect. I have asked a number of questions or sought a comment in previous posts. Without response or comment, this activity loses a great deal of value. It leaves participants floundering and guessing if they are on the right track or need to adjust some of the things they are doing. Everything is a great start to blogging, but for those that want to really progress we could use some more specifics. Rollyo is one. I emailed them seeking a tutorial. I played around to see how it worked, but was not sure at first. If I get an answer to the original question of this entry, then Rollyo will be quite useful. If not, then it may be easier to use the mega(meta?)engines and simply bookmark them.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Week #5 Thing #11

I explored www.zillow.com. It has a mapping capability and gives real estate information. The searches can be general or specific. I experimented by using an address and a general location such as a town only. the mapping tool allows quite detailed arial views. I could see my own house and out-building very plainly. There are a number of possible views: the arial, the street map, and the hybrid (combination of the arial and street map views). There is also one called the heat map. ( This just seamed like a standard highway type of map with little detail.)There could also be another use. I love to fish. If I locate a known town or location near a body of water, I can maneuver the satellite to follow the river or stream. It could help in the way a topographic map might help. It also tells about properties for sale in an area and the values of the properties in the surrounding areas. This would be an excellent tool for those wishing to sell, buy, or invest. It might become useful in historical or geographic projects where there is a need to see the terrain. It could also help authors that are attempting to use real locations in their works. Louis L'Amour would have died and gone to heaven with this tool.

Week #5 Thing #10 Part 2

I still need to figure out how to get the images to line up as a strip without being separated. Does anyone know a simpler way to locate each image without dragging and dropping? Does anyone know if these are a copyright infringement?

Week #5 Thing #10 part 1 and 3

The picture I have generated here will work well for a sign or poster in my library. If the bubbles are left blank, it can be used to generate a writing assignment in my Spanish II or III classes. The students would have to create the thoughts for both dogs.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Week #4 Thing #9

I am exploring some of the search tools to discover new RSS feeds. Edublog was interesting. I will have to explore more to see if I missed and archive. (There are archives) Some of the blogs were interesting. I enjoyed the perspective of "copyleft" presented on "tilt". It was fun to be able to use my Spanish on the bilingual site with a contributor from Chile. There were a number of sites that would be of interest to teachers of a number of disciplines.

I was not overly impressed with the search capability of Feedster. Perhaps I need to return to look for an advanced search tool. There were many irrelevant hits using a variety of indicators. Topix.net helped me locate local news feeds. There is so much to sort through with the other sites that it is quite daunting. Time is the necessary element. More advanced search tools would add precision to the searches.

Blog Search was fun, especially seeing what was available regarding school library learning 2.0. There are more hits for this than for just library learning 2.0. I also experimented and entered my blog name "dejongsplace". It had a few hits. I think this is the tool that is most productive for me.

Week #4 Thing #8 the beginning

I have reviewed both bloglines and Google Reader. I signed up for Google Reader since I already have several (now) accounts with Google. I tried to follow the link to "differences" between the two and it had nothing to do with either. Perhaps the live link has been edited to change the connection path. I see the potential for use of an RSS feed reader in many areas. I also see a possibility of the equivalent of spam (useless or inane information to wade through). I will have to review and study more carefully to select those that may be of most benefit. I am seeing some general categories that seem like they would be of use or interest to my students. After I learn more about RSS, perhaps I will be able to make knowledgeable selections and not need to wade through the useless items. At this moment I feel there is so much available, it will be hard to find what is truly of value. I am hoping to read in other blogs how others view the value of the RSS feeds. I am definitely open to comments.

Randy de Jong

I know enough to know I don't know enough.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Week #3 Thing #7 Curriculum connection

I just made a comment on week #1 to LMTMAL. I am very knowledgeable about the necessity of PLAY. I do it all the time. It is a revitalizer from which we all can benefit. As I read more blogs, I will include more comments. I had been thinking that the leadership team would be adding most, if no all, of the comments.

I have just added a comment to Manchat-Open Up to Reading This Summer. I gave him some summer reading recommendations.

Week #3 and Thing #7

I have been very impressed with the potential of using a blog to archive and store information in a searchable platform. I enjoy being able to add images from scans and digital cameras. It has also opened up a wide spectrum of photos when people have published public photos such as those in Flickr. I am hoping for a simpler and quicker posting interface in the future. There are quite a few steps needed to add some of the images. There are some that are documented as JPG but will not load after being saved in my documents. Others I had to play with in order to use the photos I wanted. I need to be careful not to shift some of the learning to technology if there is no real knowledge retention. I need to be aware of the tools that do the work for the student without a retention of knowledge. As a Spanish teacher, I know what my students can do on their own and am very aware when technology has added to the end product.

Week #3 Thing #6 plus curriculum connections

This has been quite time consuming as I fought the lack of communication between my pictures and photo programs. I did discover a great site that allows editing of pictures that you have saved on Flickr. It is http://www.piknik.com/ . It is a free site that allows you to do almost anything you want as you edit your pictures. You can also use photobucket. I wish the trading card and magazine cover toys would allow you to edit without erasing anything you had put into the design. But beggars can't be choosers. With practice these tools will become quite useful. I created a trading card set for working in my Spanish classes about family and people. I also created a magazine cover to introduce possible projects along the same lines as the articles indicated on the cover. Inside each student could expand on each theme as it related to him or her. It depends on the amount of depth a teacher can take to approach a given unit. I will have to practice image placement with this program.

Trading card set:

Friday, June 15, 2007

Week #3 Thing #5 Trading card

I have been exploring Flickr in a lot of depth. Some is useful, some is not very practical. Here is my trading card:

Week #3 thing #5-Libraries aren't quiet any more

I have discovered a lot as I have explored Flickr. This impressed me immensely. The Charlotte Observer ran a story about the dramatic shift and popularity of libraries in the area. Here is a link to a great slide show. http://www.charlotteobserver.com/images/living/061007libraries/ It is a great example of what libraries may be, but remember there are other patrons that need their space and some quiet. Now to conquer the dilemma. I have been trying to add some pictures but they are not coming up in the right format, so I will close out and try again. It popped up after I thought there was no hope. This is only the first in the slide show. the presentation rally emphasizes the versatility of the modern library. It is alive, for all ages and interests. It can and should become the hub of a school or a community.

Randy de Jong
I only know enough to know I don't know enough.

Searching the blog answers

I tried a few searches without knowing if this platform was capable of the use of key words, phrases, etc. It picked words and phrases out of titles and the bodies of the blogs. now to see if I can pull up more than one blog at a time by being sure to use a key word or phrase I know to be in more than one entry. If anyone has other descriptors they would like me to test for searching a blog, please let me know.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

For My Information: Searching the blog archives

Does anyone know if there is a way to search on Blogger by key word, phrases or some other method rather than date? If not, is there a platform that will support these types of searches for entries on the blog? I have heard of WordPress, but have not looked into it yet.

Book discussion blog:Heat

I am in the process of becoming an LMT. I realize there is a great deal I don't know. This has motivated me to begin reading books young children and young adults. I heard a recommendation for a young adult novel, Heat by Mike Lupica. I was impressed. I was captured by the style and flow of his writing. (Beware, I am not a sophisticated reviewer and use basic, everyday words when I write.) He set up the exposition to the story through action and the development of his characters. I would never have expected a story that evolved and revolved around the sport of baseball to begin with a purse-snatching. Baseball became the canvass of the painting. The characters were believable allowing you to share their feelings, thoughts, and lives. I am feeling that there was a bit of predictability, yet kids would eat up the story. I could see this as a great family film if turned into a movie. What are your thoughts?

I am not sure where to add to this blog, here or on another individual entry. I am not sure how much is needed to continue this topic for the duration of the class. If anyone has thoughts and comments I am looking forward to them. As I have thought about Heat more, I realize that there is predictability in the outcome, but that the author guides the reader through a very interesting maze of events. He adds in elements of interest that reach a wide and diverse audience. I may have figured out the ending, but the journey was the greatest part of the experience. I was so impressed by his work that I read another book by him, Miracle on 49th Street. I agree with some of the reviewers' comments. I would read it again; I would recommend it to others; and I would actually create a display to highlight the work of Mike Lupica. Now I just need to get a library to do this. If I don't get a library, I may have to find the Spanish versions to tie them into my classes.

Issue Blog: Unification of 3 school districts

It is an interesting conversation as three districts must deal with the study of district unification. In our area, Kern River Valley, there are two independent elementary districts and two schools from the Kern High School District. Everything seems to appear simple and a slam duck for a decision: combine the three and cut costs across the board. There is much more to it than such a simple resolution. The students, staff and communities would all feel a great deal of impact that they don't fully realize. Will the students benefit or experience a reduction of services? What will happen as the contractual agreements for the staff of the three districts work out a compromise that is agreeable to all? Will the tax base shift? Will there be a positive or negative impact? Has anyone else had her/his district merge with another?

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Week #2 Thing #4 Information

Is anyone else in Cyberland working on the CE credits? If so, where do we post the additional blogs we are to create? Do we intersperse them with this blog or do we create 2 new and separate blogs? Thanks. Please comment.


Monday, June 11, 2007

Week #2 Thing #3 and Thing #4

Here is the Avatar that was missing. I may get energetic and add to it. I had hoped to use another background since the world is my school. LOL I have already added a few posts. I also sent my blog address in to one of the leaders. I will see If I need to do anything else to register.

Friday, June 8, 2007

Week #1 Thing # 2 and discovery exercises

I have viewed the presentation and found it informative and useful, but a bit dry. I am grateful for the "My Learning Contract" because it helped me begin my focus. It also made me organize a bit more than I usually do. It is still in the embryonic stage, but that will change and grow through a dynamic process.

The presentation "7 1/2 Habits of Highly Successful Lifelong Learners" is very similar to who and what I am. Many of the habits seem to be a part of me already. If I were to choose the easiest habit it could be 3 or 4 of the 7 1/2 habits. I take responsibility for my own learning. I remember taking a drafting class at BYU in order to learn 1 skill I needed and wanted. I did enough to get a "C" and let the rest go because see a need for other parts of the class. I didn't blame anyone for a mediocre outcome. I was satisfied with the knowledge I needed. In other instances, I delve deeper than is required to get personal knowledge about topics I study, in or out of a classroom setting. I see knowledge and use of the knowledge as my reward-not a grade. I deal with grades because they are a necessary evil of the status quo. I have a great deal of confidence in my abilities and effectiveness as a learner. I am not foolish enough to leave a question unasked when I need the direction or clarification. I truly am a follower of habit 7 1/2. I break up many learning or working sessions with play in order to stay focused and fresh as I continue. They may not be long, but they are beneficial. My Mother-in-law taught me well. She continually asked me, "What are you doing for you?" I realized that I can't be as effective for my self or others if I have ignored myself to my detriment.

The most difficult is also difficult to pinpoint because I am involved with all of the habits to some extent. Therefore, I am going to sidestep the answer slightly as I did the first part. I really have two aspects that need work. One is viewing problems as challenges. The other may be using technology to my fullest advantage. Often I get frustrated easily, but am like the dog that doesn't give up and works on a bone until there is nothing left. I have encountered a number of situations in my life that I had to step back and reevaluate the situation or problem. Over time and by gaining a new perspective, I was able to find a resolution or a positive outcome. My mother always said I had "stick-to-it-iveness", meaning I never gave up. I need to shift the frustration sooner and change gears to the reevaluation mode. This will improve performance, outlook, and efficiency. I also need to find the time to go beyond the basic and simple uses of technology. I need to master more of the depths of that which is available. I need to practice using a variety of thought processes as I approach print and electronic searches in the library. I need to work on thinking outside the box.

Just getting my feet wet: Week #1 Thing #1

This is just the beginning of a new adventure. I enjoy learning for knowledge and often tire of the pursuit of a grade. I hope I can turn this into a life-long adventure that has no end to the journey. I am hoping to tie this into a goal of setting up an archival, searchable reference log and whatever else develops during the experience
and beyond.

I am looking forward to using this course and tutorial to increase my knowledge. I feel it will meet my needs and point me in the right direction if more is needed. Randy