Monday, February 25, 2008

skrbl (may I buy a vowel, please?)

Try this simple and easy online multi user whiteboard. After signing up for the free account, give out your URL & start working together. Sketch, text, share files, upload pictures all in one common shared space. There are no new tools to learn, nothing to download, nothing to install. Brainstorm ideas together. Everyone sees the same screen, everybody gets on the same page. More about skrbl here.

Here is a great example of using skrbl in a classroom with students...

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Global Belly Laughing Day

Did you miss it too? January 24 was Global Belly Laughing Day. I am putting this on my calendar for next year.

The physiological benefits of laughter are many. Having a good laugh releases endorphins, boosts energy and lowers stress hormones.

Here at Hosmer, we have been hit by a run of fevers. Are you looking for ways to strengthen your immune system? Have a good laugh to release the neurotransmitters that ensure your body's healing mechanisms are working. Our school nurse, Joanne, has been working hard lately. Make her job easier. Start each day by getting your students to chuckle.

Meanwhile, I am practicing for the big day next year.
Smiling Sun drawn by Jennifer Huber

Friday, February 08, 2008

Reflections on Educon2.0

Things I am reflecting on after attending the Educon2.0 conference in Philly several weeks ago:
  1. putting kids at the center of their learning
  2. kids creating, not just interacting
  3. opening the door to student creation
  4. there joy in your classroom?
  5. creating "third places" in school
  6. rethinking space - what do we want to happen here?
  7. getting away from instructional "stencils" to discovery and exploration
  8. kids bringing both heart and brain to school
  9. schools needing to be more childlike - open, curious, playful
  10. technology allowing you to go further than you can on your own
  11. hearing, "Most of what kids are doing on computers in school is just dopey" (Gary Stager)
  12. the teacher being the expert learner in the classroom
  13. knowing what's in the box before you leap out
Why change if everything is going well? Our role is to prepare students to be successful in life. Life is not static, it always involves change.

Why change? Because it's part of life!

Are you interested in hearing and seeing more about this Educon2.0 experience?
By the power of Ustream, you can watch the sessions yourself. Go to the Educon20 wiki and scroll down until you see the individual sessions. Next, choose a session and click on "click here for session notes and UStream Session Recording." These are not the 2-4 minute youtube videos that you can fit in easily, so grab a cup of tea first and enjoy.