Useful Resources

The following resources may prove useful to you as you continue your investigation into using collaborative technology in the classroom. I trust that they will be of some use to you. As you read through them, please do leave a comment or send me an email should think of additional resources to add!

Collaborative Technology Websites:One of the main goals of this blog is to share the information I collect with other educators who may just now be starting to use Web 2.0 technologies in the classroom. By now, my love of gadgets and the many technology tools out there should be clear. However, as many well-established educators within the Web 2.0 niche will tell you, tools will only get you so far. To gain insight into how I can best apply these tools to better serve my students, I turn to the following top educational blog sites. Please note that this list is by no means exhaustive, and it is always expanding. It is my hope that you will read and subscribe to these blogs and from them, begin to locate others. As you do, please do not hesitate to contact me so that I can help spread the word!Classroom 2.0: Get here and join…. now! This is the social networking site for those interested in using computer technology (especially Web 2.0) in the classroom. This was the first online teaching community I joined, and I firmly believe it to be one of the most comfortable and effective networking sites for those to to this subject. How often have you felt alone in your struggles to improve education through technology and innovative teaching practices? Well, stop it! Get over to the Classroom 2.0 site now and join. When you get there, add me as a friend so that we can start planning that joint classroom blogging or podcast project!

EdTechTalk: Edtechtalk is a webcasting network of educators dedicated to helping those involved in educational technology explore, discuss, and collaborate in its use. Edtechtalk is part of EducationBridges, which is a division of Worldbridges. More about EdTechTalk. Please tune in to these weekly shows and get to know the folks that join in regularly. I love the chat feature for live posting during episodes, and it is always very cool to be asked to contribute via Skype voice chat as well!

Education/Technology: Tim Lauer is the principal at Lewis Elementary School in Portland, Oregon. I enjoy his site because I can see what he and those in his circle are doing with technology and reflect on ways I can incorporate similar practices into my classroom.

Teaching Generation Z: Graham Wegner, author of this blog, is an Australian educator who uses Web 2.0 technologies to teach technology leadership. This blog never fails to provide updates on breaking news in our field. I have really come to value this blog. Graham provides consistent insight into what it means to ‘look over the shoulder’ of teachers who are well-versed and expert in using collaborative technology to instruct and excite their students.

Durff’s Blog: Lisa Durff is an avid podcaster and webcaster. I first met her through Classroom 2.0, and it is through her that I first became aware of the Webcast Academy project – a hands on, collaborative training center for anyone interested in learning about how to create and produce webcasts. Lisa is also an active member of the EdTechTalk information portal, and her blog is definitely one to watch.

Kevin Honeycutt’s ESSDACK Site Central: Kevin Honeycutt is perhaps one of the most energized people I have come across in the Web 2.0 education world. His Driving Questions in Education video podcasts never fail to get my mind going, and I look forward to listening to them regularly. Very good stuff.

Speed of Creativity: Wes Fryer offers up thought provoking and meaningful topics for discussion that really give you something to mull over. Do your self a favor, get over to his site and subscribe to the article and podcast feeds. You won’t be sorry.

Cool Cat Teacher Blog: Vicki Davis is a very well-established educator, blog author, and webcast talk show host. She is a founding member of Women of Web 2.0 and a contributor to the Tech Learning blog. Please be sure to subscribe to the Cool Cat Teacher feed to learn more about creating improved student performance and excitement through the use of such cutting edge tools as blogs, wikis, podcasts, digital storytelling (video making), and other Web 2.0 tools.

Thoughts from a Technospud: Author Jennifer Wagner works with Pre K through 6th grade teachers – providing ways for them to effectively use technology in the classroom. Her tips for teachers and stories of what it is like to be the go to educational technology resource contact are fantastic. Along with Lisa Durff, Jennifer is also an active member of the EdTechTalk information portal.

Around the Corner v2 – Miguel writes from the heart in this blog. His stories of the trials and successes he faces in education are both informative and moving. Please stop by and read his posts. A day doesn’t go by that I don’t learn something from him.

TipLine – Gates’ Computer Tips: Last but most certainly not least we have Mr. Jim Gates’ TipLine Computer Tips blog. I met Jim through a Moodle class I took through GlobalClassrooms, and he never fails to provide insights into issues I find perplexing. His jovial demeanor, caring spirit, and knowledge regarding the use of Web 2.0 technology in the classroom are unmatched in the field.

What is a Blog?   Well, put simply: A blog is a diary, a journal, a publication tool, a school administration/classroom tool, and a potential research source.  For those of you who are new to blogging, I thought I’d include an excerpt and link to an October 2006 Glencoe/McGraw Hill website (referenced by Wesley Fryer’s Google and Yahoo for Educators Wiki).

“A blog (sometimes referred to as a weblog) is a Web publishing tool that allows authors to quickly and easily self-publish text, artwork, links to other blogs or Web sites, and a whole array of other content.

Blogs are set-up like conventional Web sites, with navigation links, and other standard Web site features. Blogs have one standard characteristic, however: the posting. Blog postings are text entries, similar to a diary or journal, which include a posting date and may include comments by people other than the author, photos, links, or other digital media.

Postings are often short and frequently updated. They appear in reverse chronological order and can include archived entries.

Although blogs have been around for years, they have recently gained in popularity and consequently have received more media coverage.

Blogs work well for students because they can be worked on at virtually any time, in any place with an Internet-enabled computer. Hence, they can be used by computer savvy teachers to create a classroom that extends beyond the boundaries of the school yard.”

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