Monday, December 14, 2009

Week 9 - Thing 23 Copyright & Creative Commons

I find the topic of copyright to be a Pandora's box. The more I learn, the more I know I don't know. I read Lawrence Lessig's book this summer, Remix, and was overwhelmed by all I learned. I ought to read it again. There is so much in there our students need to learn.

When I visited Lessig's blog today, I was surprised to read that his final post was on Aug. 20, 2009. He did state his podcast would remain active, and, now knowing what podcasts are and how to load them, I will look into that access to Mr. Lessig's vast knowledge.

I come to the end of my 23 Things experience with mixed emotions - glad to be done, surprised at all I learned, and encouraged to get out and explore the web more on my own. I hope ESC1 brings in 11 1/2 Things, as I know there is so much more to learn. I walk away from this set of things with RSS feeds that update me daily, an active blog, a photo hosting site keeping watch over my photos, and access to free e and audio books. Whew!

Week 9 - Thing 22 ebooks

Wow! I think I have heard of Project Gutenberg, but never checked it out. I found it to be impressive. Useful to me? I'm not yet sure, since everything is so old the copyright has expired. But what a great way to preserve and share it.

The other site I took a close look at was
- where people can release their books into the wild and track them. It is sort of like the website that tracks dollar bills. I like how you can even establish a place for releasing books. Hmmmm... thinking about creating a space for this in my library. People constantly want to make donations and not all are useful. It also prompts online discussions about the books.

Week 9 - Thing 21 Podcasts

This thing turned out to be less about podcasts per se, and more about learning to use iTunes. iTunes came equipped on my computer, but I had never used it. As someone who enjoys silence, I don't have an iPod. (I suspect my daughters would quickly adopt it if I bought one.) So, into iTunes I went where I found podcasts but had great difficulty narrowing things down to just library-related podcasts. Fine... I found books, I'll listen to something here. Now to make it play.

After listening to episodes by LibVibe, Library Geek, and th

I found podcasts to be rather old-fashioned. We have reached an age where video is quick and easy to produce... and I found myself wanting an image to watch. So then I looked for a video podcast. I found iTunes to be difficult to search and ended up watching the ABC nightly news.

When would I make time to listen on a regular basis? How would I use this with students. I found this "thing" to be cumbersome and tedious for the results I acquired. Not my favorie "thing".

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Week 9 - Thing 20 YouTube

I wish I had hours to browse YouTube!  There are some truly creative individuals posting things besides baby's first steps. 

Because it's blocked at work, I rarely remember to search for content to support my teaching. Today I stayed on the lighter side, watching the recommended videos from the ESC1 post and then a few book truck drill team performances before retiring to the writing part of this experience. 

The Manifesto video really made me think about the direction the library is moving, or perhaps I should say the direction society is moving.  Most of the comments for that video were rather derogatory which surprised me. The overall mood indicated libraries should not try to keep up with current technology (one cited VHS tapes as an example) but continue to emphasize reading.  That makes me wonder if we can really separate the two. 

Monday, December 7, 2009

Week 8 - Thing 19 Library Thing

On the way to this thing, I added 3 more RSS feeds and got completely sidetracked by our digital world. 

Library Thing --- Wow! Where was this when I became a librarian.  I wish I had been tracking all the books I read so I would have it as a resource when kids come to me for suggestions.  With the recent Destiny upgrade, Follett now provides a Facebook/Library Thing/Wiki type of hybrid where students and I can track books read, discuss, and recommend.  If I didn't have that new tool, I would be all over this one! 

For this thin's assignment, I added the first 5 books that popped into my head.  This proved to be quite an interesting mix - two from my childhood, one from jr. high, a favorite of my daughters', and a recent read.  :-)

Week 7 - Thing 18 Productivity Tools

Zoho looks like a great resource for group work.  I'm thinking of grant writing where it goes back and forth to be edited and reviewed by 2 or 3 people before being sent out.  I can also see having students do group work this way.

Unfortunately, my mind was a blank when I gave it a trial run... Hence, the clever post.  ;-)

I've been using some of Google's resources, but didn't know who else was offering such tools.  Now if I could just figure out how to un-mess-up my calendar that I sync'd the wrong way between Outlook & Google!


The quick, brown fox jumped over the lazy dog.

Week 7 - Thing 17 Sandbox

PBWorks is where I creaetd and maintained the wiki for my church... but I still learned something new tonight.  I didn't know there wa a page history button!  I also hadn't thought about making that part of the wiki open for "play".  I set it up to go with the topic and only expected comments below.  Live and learn!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Week 7 - Thing 16

Wikis.  I need to put more effort into this, both in terms of wikis for the library and promotion for use by teachers.

I started a reading incentive program this fall "Read Around the World".  My 6th and 9th grade Humanities teachers jumped right onto this one and challenged each others' students to participate.  One feature I wanted to include was a wiki for book reviews that could be sorted by country, based on the tags in the entry.  But I couldn't get a wiki formatted correctly.  And then a well-meaning but mis-informed person suggested I create a blog.  I tried pbworks and then (I think) edublogs.  I finally got the format I wanted in blogger, but no one could post without an invitation, and I was only allowed to invite 1/2 the number of people I needed.  So it never really developed.  If nothing else, this is the one things I need to walk away from 23 things and implement.  Really make it work.  I will be looking closer at those wikis for the best site for me.

I created a wiki for a small group Bible study at my church.  There were only 7 of us and I would call it a success.  For busy people with varying schedules, we found it a great way to connect.  I was in charge and greatly enjoyed putting the pages together and administering.  But the application in the school setting is the challenge.  Once again, I need to see how others blazed the trail before me.

Week 6 - Thing 15 Library 2.0

As I read about Library 2.0, I can't help but admire the creators of all the new technologies we enjoy.  I like the improvement.  I enjoy learning new ways to do old things.  But I have discovered I am not much of an innovator.  I learn quickly and adapt fairly easily to our modern, digital world.  But I can't see what's coming next.  I understand the idea that libraries as we knew them will no longer be necessary, but what will they become?  It seems someone else will figure it out before me.

I have looked at the moon hundreds of times and never once wondered what it was like on the surface.  I am interesetd and amazed by what NASA has accomplished, but if modernization were to depend upon me to occur, there would still not be footprints on the lunar surface. 

I think I get too comfortable with the current situation to keep up with what is coming next.  Oh, I might foresee minor changes or improvements, but while I'm working on those, the big picture shifts and I'm still behind. 

So what will libraries become?  What will my role be?  I'm curious and eager to learn - and even to lead others once I find out - but it appears to be my nature to wait for someone else to blaze the trail.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Week 6 - Thing 14 Technorati

Tagging: Get it.  Love it.  Showed my mom how to do this with her photos and she was estatic.  Showed my daughter how to do this on her blog.  However, I keep forgetting to add tags to my own posts.  :-)

Technorati:  Huh?  Do I really want to be able to explore others blogs?  It appears to be information overload at a whole new level.  Then again...

The Technorati tutorial link from the ESC1 page leads to a page explaining how Technorati's attempts to prevent spam failed and what they are doing now.  I found a tutorial at .  It was pretty bare bones, but it got me started.  So, I've begun the process of claiming my blog, but the appear to have a backlog.  Watch for technorati part 2.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Week 6 - Thing 13 Bookmarking

Ah, one never stops learning.  I created a account about four months ago and then proceeded to do nothing with it.  About 2 weeks ago, I was asked to present to teachers on the subjects of academic honesty, plagiarism, and copyright.  As I searched the web, I hit information overload, but I also had an aha! moment.  In addition to a works cited page on my slide show, I bookmarked all of my resources in and shared my account name in my presentation.  So rather than having to key in the long url's from my slide, teachers could access my bookmarks - complete with notes - to access the sites themselves.

As for this lesson, I did watch the tutorial to learn new tips.  The format of has changed dramatically since the video was made.

And I added a badge - see lower right.

Week 5 - Thing 12 ROLLYO

This "thing" seems like a good concept, but with NetTrekker and WebPath Express through our Destiny software, I'm wondering if I will actually use it with students.  I had a lot of trouble getting started with it - evidently too many people were connecting at once.  Once I did get signed in, I looked at a few rolls, but I just didn't get this "thing", created one myself, but just didn't see this "thing" as something I will use.  Maybe I need to mull it over a little. 

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Week 5 - Thing 11

Wow!  I'm feeling rather savvy.  Looking at the list of award winners, I am already familiar with the following:
Google Aps
PB works
Craigs list
Google maps
Mango languages
At least that will help me narrow down the list of what to explore today.  I'm thinking I should do a book one, but I also think its time to investigate the world of Twitter.

OK, I didn't really want to create a Twitter account, but I took a look at what was being said about New Moon (generally more favorable than Twilight, but I'm still not interested in seeing it.)  I also followed a link I received from someone to follow them on Twitter - which I then added to my RSS feeds.  Trying to figure out what I would use this for.... make it available to my students so I can comment on the latest book I've read?  Annoy my in-laws?  I'll probably go with the latter.

Ning appears to have undergone some changes, making it difficult to search for groups. I'm curious to see if this is blocked at school.  I could see a potential book discussion group here...

And I made it to Level 5 with 134,000+ points on Travel IQ.  Good?  Bad?  Who knows, but a fun time waster.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Week 5 - Thing 10

This was a fun thing to do, although I don't have much to show for it. 

I was hoping to create a neat holiday graphic for my library website or blog. 
Instead I found out my rap name.

I also made a Lego Librarian at  Since my windows hard drive is installed in a Mac, I was unable to print screen and copy the picture to here.  She was a cute, little, old-fashioned librarian with a cup of coffe in one hand, War & Peace in the other, and Princess Leia buns on her head.

I had successful mashed my name with my spouses.  When combining Scott and Cindy, I decided the best mashup was Scondy.  May we live long enough to fit that uni-name. was interesting, but not enough to do anything with.

The Miracle Maker was interesting, but I found Australia in the fry pan I left to soak last night.  That was enough miracle for one day.

  The above items were from

I also took a look at and came up with this:

I must say their word mosaic had some nice features that I wish Wordle would adopt (like selecting the shape of your design & colors), but I like Wordle better.

Incorporating these cute little time-wasters into meaningful instruction is what I always find challenging.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Week 4 - Thing 9

Like most online searches, I ended up with information overload. 

I did subscribe to two blogs that are of particular interest to me.  One is more technology related, keeping me up-to-date and learning.  The other is good, old-fashioned librarianship that provided me with some great lesson ideas. 

I think it would be easy to spend hours tweaking my reader, following the posts, and ignoring my other work!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Week 4 - Thing 8

I'm going to need a couple of days to see if this worked.  I have a gadget on my destop that is feeds.  I have been receiving headlines since I found the gadget.  I did not realize it was an RSS feed, and I didn't know the news source until I looked into it tonight.  Then I discovered I could add blog feeds to it.  I watched both tutorials for the feeds that were in the 23 things blog, but I don't know if I want ANOTHER account somewhere. I'm trying to make this work, but some sites that show the RSS icon will not let me add them to my desktop gadget. I also can add my desktop feeds to my blog... not good in terms of following directions, but I like the idea of having the feeds come to me so I don't even have to sign on.

I can see a future in this for teaching.  Teachers can maintain their assignments on blogs and the feeds will keep students up to date.  I can also see email going the way of snail-mail.  I rarely check my personal email now that I have a Facebook account.  My email all seems to be junk.  I won't have to log on to my favorite blogs... they will come to me. 

Technology is great when it works!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Week 3 - Thing 7

My church just installed a new AV system and my husband and I will be running it.  I'm not sure how we landed this job - something about being a Media Specialist drew my pastor's attention.  I don't have much experience with sound systems... there have always been students at school who were able to operate the amps, and fortunately my husband took on that section.  The new monitors are connected to a laptop that will run slide shows, live video, etc.  That will be my role.  We have downloaded a program - Media Shout - to allow us to run several slide shows from one program.  I am hoping to incorporate some new things I am learning, like a possible MashUp or a screen shot from Wordle.  It has been an interested transition that some of the older members resist.  I hope the transition goes smoothly.


Another modern, techonology-related experience occurred this week, and this seems like a good forum to share it.  I've heard over and over how we, as educators, need to rethink the "no phones in school" policies that most schools have in place, in order to relate better to teens, get them interested in learning, etc.

I was recently at a meeting where important future dates were being mentioned.  I had been taking notes on paper, but when the speaker began to mention dates, I grabbed my phone to enter the dates so they could later be synched into the calendar on my desktop (which syncs with an online calendar so my assistants know what I'm up to.)  As I entered the dates, I suddenly felt very self-conscious.... to the innocent eye, I appeared to be texting.  But I was on-task and, even more important, I was being EFFICIENT. 

This experience really made me think (and momentarily tune-out of the meeting).  Many of our students are more familiar with these tools than we are.  While they may occasionally use their phones for social purposes, they would also love to use them as a learning tool.  We don't confiscate pens and paper, but I know from my own experience that they can be used during class to look like one is on-task while actually performing a social activity, like writing a note to one's BFF.  No phones during a test is obvious.  But what about the rest of the time.  I wonder how long it will take for this policy to change.

Week 3 - Thing 6

Color Picker was a lot of fun.  I can't think of any teaching applications for it, but like the description on the side read, "Its purpose is simply to provide wonder and delight. Nothing more, nothing less. Isn't that enough? -- jbum" 

I had fun making my trading card, but didn't want to link my flickr account to since I don't know if I'll use it again and I don't want them accessing my photos.  I can think of classroom applications for the trading cards, but doubt I would have time in the library to do a project from start to finish.  It may be a fun optional activity to promote new books.  I also saw one example of different staff cards that the students collect to get to know the faculty.  That has possibilities.

MashUps look like fun if you have time to be artsy.  It could be a way for students to design new covers for older books.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Week 3 - Thing 5

Setting up the account was quick and easy.  They've made it foolproof, and I had that done in no time.  Selecting and uploading photos took more time than expected.  And then, of course, there is playing with the photos....

Monday, October 26, 2009

Week 2 - Thing 4

Sent my email off to register my blog.  Now I wait.

Wondering what the easiest way is to set up a blog/wiki for students to contribute information.

Week 2 - Thing 3

Woo-hoo.  I'm off and running.  Now, to not get sidetracked with the need to change my avatars clothes and tweak my layout on a daily bais.  I can see where the "fun" and "play" come into this.  This may even be better than scrapbooking.  There is no "undo" option with scissors.

Week 1 - Thing 2

Easiest of the 7 1/2 things:  Setting a measurable goal. 
Most difficult:  Keeping that positive attitude towards challenges.  They are just learning opportunities.

Week 1 - Thing 1

Finally took the plunge to be officially 2.0'd.  Always eager to learn new things, and especially eager to learn how to incorporate them into the school setting, this should prove useful.