Capturing My Thoughts

Archive for September, 2012

101 Websites That Every Elementary Teacher Should Know About

101 websites that every teacher should know about
via Diigo


Making Connections Through ISTE Connects

In trying to make connections with others in my field, I decided to start with the ISTE website. I chose this website because it is a society of learners in the educational technology field. It provides the latest resources, practices, and information regarding technology in education. Since this is an international community, there are connections from people all over the world with various ideas and teaching styles. I decided to look at ISTE’s Twitter connection (@isteconnects).

Sooooo… What makes a Tweet trustworthy? 10 Proven Ways to Make Your Tweets Trustworthy [STUDY]

I selected five accounts who were interacting with isteconnects to decide if they are Trustworthy, and if I would Follow them.

1. Ben Smith – @edtechben – I found Ben to be trustworthy for the reasons stated below. I decided to follow him based on his website EdTechInnovators, which I found as a useful resource. I also enjoyed how his posts incorporated links to educational technology ideas.

  • He is an ISTE board member
  • Many of his tweets include well known publications
  • He has an impressive website which provides resources for integrating technology in the classroom. (EdTechInnovators)
  • He won an award at ISTE 2011 for being a leader in the field of educational technology

2. Caitlin Tucker – @CTuckerEnglish – I think Caitlin is trustworthy, and I chose to follow her because she has many of the same technology interest as I do. She is using collaborize classroom, which is something I am interested in learning more about. She also had great ideas for back to school night using web 2.o technologies. All of her posts are related to education and technology, and the page is very professional. I think this will be a valuable follow 🙂

3. Corwin Press – @CorwinPress – Corwin is trustworthy, however I chose not to follow as their page was more of an advertising page for their company in which I have no interest. It is more geared toward professional development.

  • Corwin is a publishing company for education which I already know about
  • There are many retweets
  • There is valid contact information including telephone numbers and a website
  • They are being followed by the National Science Teacher Association as well as Pearson Science, which are two well known companies

A few turn offs for me on this Twitter page: The links were not active, and the profile photo was very pixily.

4. Gordon Dahlby – @gdahlby – Gordon is trustworthy, however I am basing that solely on his affiliation with ISTE. I couldn’t determine much more evidence from his page.  I chose to follow him after seeing his! page which contained various information about technology in general.

  • Past ISTE Board Director

5. David W. Deeds – @dweeds – I don’t think I would follow David’s page. It seems very generic. He is very much into virtual worlds, which I have no interest in using. I am looking for more elementary education based ideas.

After trying to connect with different people through Twitter, I realized that I prefer people who are more focused in what they are tweeting. I don’t prefer the pages that have tweets about too many topics in technology education. I would have to say that my favorite page would have to be Caitlin Tucker’s page. She was right up my alley of interests, and I valued many of her posts. I think I will find the most use out of connecting with her and the people she follows.

Web Highlighter

Installing the Web Highlighter bookmarklet enables you to easily highlight and bookmark webpages in iPad Safari, just like in iBooks.
via Diigo

Stick Pick app | iPad Curriculum

Questioning App using Bloom’s Taxonomy to ask questions to students at their levels.
via Diigo

Class Dojo

My latest discovery on classroom management strategies.

Class Dojo


Aggregation vs. Curation

Aggregation is identifying a content source and sharing everything that is found, while Curation is more focused. Curation zooms in on all of that information and selects the most important and interesting pieces.

This picture is a nice visual to show the difference between Aggregation and Curation. The content would be shirts. So Aggregation would be every shirt that was found (The Whole), while Curation would focus in on specific shirts (An Organized Selection).

Two articles that helped me to understand the difference:

 Curate Your Learning

Aggregation and Curation: Two Concepts that Explain a Lot about Digital Change

This Video makes the difference very clear:

To end my night, enjoy this little comic:

Information Flow and Dashboards

I have explored many different tools this week to help me organize my social media life. Here is a brief overview of what I learned about each one, and how I can use it personally.  My two favorites were and Netvibes.

Google Reader
This tool made it easier for me to keep track of everyone’s blog posts. Before using Google Reader I was going through and clicking on each person. Now the most up to date posts are already showing. I came across this PDF which shares various ways to us Google Reader in the classroom. My favorite was the idea about blogging with other elementary schools.

Using if this then that is a quick and easy way to share posts to multiple places at once. I really like this tool because it saves me time!!! I was able to share my blog posts automatically with my Twitter page with a simple recipe using a trigger that enables an action. This tool is a great way to share bookmarks with colleagues. I can bookmark to Diigo and then have it updated on my Twitter page, my dropbox, or even my blog, and only have to post it once. I could even have it emailed right to my team members.

HootSuite allows me to organize my social media sites by using tabs. I have a tab for Facebook and once I click it, my page is organized into three columns Wall Posts, Pictures, and Most Recent. This saves me from doing a lot of moving around the page, because it is all right there. The other tab is my Twitter in which I can create certain streams for whom I want to follow. it also organizes my sent tweets, my  mentions, and my home feed all on one page.

One of my favorite tools from this week is Netvibes. It is like having everything right in front of me. I can have my social media, my sports updates, my pictures, my interests, all in one place. It saves me a lot of time from clicking around. It keeps me updated by refreshing every so often. I can manage everything right from this dashboard. What I really liked about this, was that it wasn’t strictly social media. I could basically add anything that I would typically do on the Internet to my dashboard. It is like a personalized web for me. This would be a perfect tool to manage all of my daily responsibilities at work.