Monday, August 20, 2007

Do 13 of Us Rule The Virtual World - Poll

Out of sheer curiosity, I've added a poll to the sidebar of my blog. This is one of the new features rolled out by "blogger in draft" . (Other features are: video upload from within the editor; a google search engine which can be set to search: your blog, your blog and sites you link to from within your posts, and the 'whole' web.)

The poll question "How Many Online IDs Do You Have", is one that my fake identities and myself have been asking on and off, since we read that "MySpace Hits 100 Million Accounts" in Mashable a year ago.

We were reminded of it yet again when we received the following quote from Jay's (or Yankel)'s "Boidem" column, after he uncovered yet another of my IDs.

"In Thomas Pynchon's classic novel V. people admit to ruling the world, even if it isn't completely true."
"..Stencil shrank at the cold air moving in through the window.
"I'm not a priest. Don't try appealing to someone you've only known in a written confession. We do not walk ganged, Stencil, all our separate selves, like Siamese quintuplets or more. God knows how many Stencils have chased V. about the world." "Fairing," Stencil croaked, "in whose Parish Stencil was shot, preceded your Father Avalanche."
"I could have told you. Told you the name."
"Saw no advantage in making things worse."
Stencil's eyes narrowed. Majistral turned, caught him looking cagy.

"Yes, yes. Thirteen of us rule the world in secret." "

..... need I say more?

Obviously the poll is just a bit of fun . However, in my "real life" I am constantly surprised by seeming contradiction between the statistics and how few of my acquaintances/colleagues/employers even know what social sites and web2.0 are. Could the statistics be based on the multiple IDs of users like myself? If so, what, if any, are the implications?

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Well, I've never been tagged so this is a first 2 times over, (that's what comes of keeping multiple blogs.) I think this could be an excellent getting to know you exercise in a collaborative project between different classes/schools, so thanks to Reuven Werber and Ken Pruitt for passing on this idea.Anyway, here are the rules:
  • Post these rules before you give your facts
  • List 8 random facts about yourself
  • At the end of your post, choose (tag) 8 people and list their names, linking to them
  • Leave a comment on their blog, letting them know they’ve been tagged

8 Random Facts About Me
1. I hated school and swore I would never be a teacher.
2. At 13 I got my first "job" selling flowers in an outdoor market
3. My favorite book is 100 Years of Solitude
4. I can't see the letters on my cellphone in order to send text
5. My strangest job was teaching EFL over the phone in conference calls
6. I'm left handed but use the mouse with my right hand
7. I still intend to learn to play piano
8. My husband, 3 children, 2 dogs and I live on a farm in Israel. Uninvited guests in my house to date: a family of sheep in the living room, a cow at my front door, a bat in my jeans, and the occasional snakes, scorpions and lizards (almost makes me miss England!)

So those are my 8 random facts - I'm going to tag Anne Mirtschin Larry Ferlazzo HG Lindquist from here and JoNelle Gardner, Hans Feldmeier, DDeubel Eduardo Lina Susanb from my other blog.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Getting the most out of web20 in the classroom - You teach my students I'll teach yours.

I've spent the last year learning up on technology in education and in particular web2.0. My toolbar overflows ... and yet I'm stumped whenever I try to sit down and think what to do in the classroom come September, unable to focus, unable to make a decision. How do I create a meaningful experience, for a heterogenous class of about 30 students, in one 45 minute weekly lesson? How do I multiply that by 6 grades? Past experience has taught me that I can't please everyone, no matter what "project" I choose/build/create for my classes, collaborative, international or not, it won't suit every student. I could have students research a topic of their choice. However when I tried this in the past I found it very difficult to be the lone mentor, mediator, guide and teacher for so many students on such a wide topic base.
The beginnings of an idea, "teach my students and I'll teach yours".
  • Teachers create and publish online 1 collaborative distance learning "project" - this could be achieved by opening different groups on ning, imbee, haiku, edu20 etc.
  • Individual students would register for the project of their choice
  • We become the online teachers/mentors of the students who registered for our project and mediator/assistant for students in our classes who are working on other projects.

Our students would benefit from: choosing a subject that interests them, working with a teacher who is a specialist in the subject they have chosen, meeting and working with other students who share similar interests.

Of course, I know this would take a lot of planning but is it at all feasible?