Friday, July 31, 2009

Early Computer Literacy

"Readers Are Leaders!" That's the motto that can be heard around our house as I share with my children the passion for reading. Today, my son, who will be in kindergarten, was reading this book in his room. He is already very computer literate, even more so than my daughter. He can navigate to websites he has visited and maneuver around the site to where he wants go and read. Coming down the stairs he said, "Mom, can I go to this website on the back of the book?" I bought the book a few years back because it was his name, and did not even realize it had a website.

I asked him how he knew that the book had a website and here's his answer, "Mom, it had a www. and a .com on the end." I was amazed that he is already recognizing environmental computer print in his daily life. The education that he will have will be so different than mine, but better. He was born in a different time. Between flip video cameras, internet literacy, and using Google as a verb and noun, his learning opportunities will always be evolving as new software, gadgets, and technology will be coming out in the 21st Century. Soon, he will be guiding me into his learning world. For now, I'm going to enjoy the "Mom knows a lot" phase. It won't last long!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Music in The Classroom

Sunday evening I was at a dinner party and they began discussing the Wedding Entrance Dance video that is all the rage on youtube.
I hadn't heard of about it so a friend pulled out his Iphone and showed me. I was intrigued enough that I watched it numerous times at home and read the evolving story online. Even today, I can't help but wonder why the world is entranced with the video and idea. Yes, it's totally a feel good moment, but there's more. Weddings are celebrations and the wedding party began the celebration at the ceremony using music to share their joy. There wasn't a script to follow. Each member showed their individuality in the way they danced down the aisle.

Wouldn't it be great to see a class create their own dance to music? A dance or song to come into the classroom in the morning and one to leave. Or a Friday afternoon tradition as they walk out to the buses for the weekend. Think about the community building for the beginning of the school year. Or maybe choosing a song for background while they share their writing or book review. Or finding a song for science experiments. Each student showcasing themselves in a way that is typically not seen in a self-contained classroom. The possibilities are endless. What are some ways you have used music in the classroom?

Monday, July 27, 2009

Twitter Tolerance

I absolutely love Twitter. I am extremely linear, in the way, that my life revolves around lists. Lists of books, to-do lists, travel lists, school lists, house renovation lists: they keep me balanced. So, of course, the way twitter works would totally fit in my realm. After all, the tweets come in a narrow timeline and if you add tweetdeck, you can organize into groups. I currently have a Dublin group, technology group, running/athletic group, and the public group. I can easily move from one group to the other by a mere scroll of my cursor. It works for me. But, I know of friends who could not "get" twitter.

I've recently joined some Nings, but am struggling through the process. I have difficulty focusing and finding information that can help me. Yet, I've heard great response from friends about Nings and Facebook. Different learning styles, different forms of communication tools. What works for one, may not work for another.

Mary Lee, at A Year of Reading, wrote an entry about too much online chatter. I, too, have felt that way and needed a break from technology. This past week, I read online but did not participate in Nings, tweets, and emails. It was a much needed break where I was able to reflect upon what I want the purpose of technology to be in my life. I will be the first to admit that it has so many uses, but I need to remember to be present in day-to-day matters.

Franki sent a twitter mosaic meme. I posted all my "friends" and they are an eclectic group.

Get your twitter mosaic here.