Sunday, March 8, 2009

NECC 2008 Notes

ISTE’s NETS•T Refreshed Roll-Out

We need real world, relevant assignments because we’ve already done well moving from the sage on the stage to the guide on the side. At this point we need to re-inspire teachers.

The new teacher standards include:
Facilitate and inspire student learning and creativity
Design and develop digital-age learning experiences and assessments
Model digital-age work and learning
Promote and model digital citizenship and responsibility
Engage in professional growth and leadership

There is a new tool available through ISTE’s website that will assist administrators in determining the level of technology integration occurring with their teachers.

Check out fact flippers:

Dan Edelson, Getting out of the Classroom with Technology

Volunteer Geography: A variant of citizen science. For example, students can make and share field observations and analyze and provide interpretations of that data. The concept is that students collect data by taking measurements, thy submit the data via a web form, they visualize it using interactive maps, they analyze patterns based on the data and visualization, and they may report back to others in their classes. One problem with this is that students will only be able to see small amounts of data if they are involved during the start if the project. An example of this was students testing soil samples following use of salt on icy roads. Students get to experience the full spectrum of the scientific process. In this case, students used probes and collected data in the classroom and submitted information via a website.

NGS FieldScope allows students to collect real world data. NGS chooses a region to study and invites teachers and students to participate. The teachers must purchase the equipment which costs about $1,000.

Chris Dede, Ubiquitous Computing

Goal: Repurpose common items for educational purposes (e.g., using cell phones for augmented learning).

Cheryl Lemke

We need to recognize that adolescent learning includes the home, school, peers, work, distributed resources, and communities – not just school. Our goal at this point is scalability of using technology tools for 21st century teaching, not just focusing on use in our own classrooms.

She suggests we use research-based methods to develop lessons and units that serve as “sheet music.” The teachers base their instruction on the sheet music, but also improvise.

A good teacher blog including student podcasts is “Learning on the Go.” The teacher sets up her class as a fictional consulting agency and the students solve real world algebra problems. Another teacher uses authentic travel agent activities to teach about Greek history.

SimCalc: (teaches about perspective)

Media multi-tasking: We can only do one thing at a time, but we can quickly move from one thing to another. Kids are better at multi-tasking than adults. When learning, students are distracted when multi-tasking (except for things like music without lyrics in the background).

Universe: (identifies what is going on online in real time using a visual perspective)

Venezuela started teaching critical thinking to their elementary and middle school students 10 years ago. Now, they are finding increased average adult IQs across the country.


Alan November, “Designing Rigorous and Globally Connected Assignments”

This presentation is available from the “Archive of Articles” on This presentation is available at Digital Farm.

Students are connected to everyone in their lives – except their teachers because schools block everything. “Schools are the learning police.” There is more freedom in Chinese schools in terms of the Internet than here. We are so worried about their safety that we block their learning.

Vocabulary of the Web: Students need to learn information resources. This type of information is available on

By adding site:en to Google searches, you will only get sites with an English country code. To get Turkey-based sites, type site:tr.

Adding view:timeline to a search, you can access the most recent information about a given search term.

Type link: to find out how many links exist to that particular site.

Hall Davidson, “It’s in Your Pocket: Teaching Spectacularly with Cell Phones” (How kids use video on a daily basis)

Every classroom should have a student-designated web researcher. The teacher should never have to answer a factual question, they should only have to respond to higher-order thinking questions.

There is a Google feature that allows you to create your own search engine. November believes teachers and students should jointly build search engines. This will give students less stimuli when they do searches.

It would be nice if students could develop resources that teach content and then future students review these tutorials before class. Students, then, are responsible for learning their own content and class time is replaced with problem solving. When there’s not a lot of Internet access, students could have a DVD with all the information at home (because DVDs are more common in the home than Internet connections).

The is a downloadable application that allows you to create screencasts.

Instead of teaching teachers to use technology, November jokes that we should send two of our students to the training and one of the students should be the biggest trouble-maker in the class.

Wikipedia isn’t an encyclopedia, it’s a publishing house. Third grade students were told they would visit the Pitot House and write an article they would submit to the largest encyclopedia in the class. The students wrote and published their Wikipedia article and now they follow the RSS feed for the article and critique what other people write. Organizes donations to small business entrepreneurs. The donors get their money back and they get reports on their projects. You can also talk to the other people who have invested in the same entrepreneurial project. alters voice to text. You can call this service from your cell phone. Another option is
: Allows you to do automatic polls from cell phones (like the classroom response systems)

Terry Cavanaugh, GIS, Google Maps, and More for Literacy Projects

There are interactive maps that show all he locations mentioned in a book (e.g., The Travels of Marco Polo). [Note to self – check out the Bible.]

Gutenkarte ( also makes a map of a text, showing what places are most frequently mentioned. Amazon’s Concordance also does this by telling the 100 most used words in a given text. allows you to map a story using latitude and longitude in a spreadsheet. has 23 stories you can follow on Google Earth. You download the .kmz file and use it with Google Earth. An example is with Make Way for Ducklings. The entire story is mapped as sections are mentioned. Also, people have added pictures of items and informational text from specific locations in the book. Anyone can make a Google Lit Trip. Tells a story using a map – the text is embedded in the map.

Teachers can get the Pro Version of Google Earth by writing to Google and requesting it. It is possible to make a map for each student so they can each map out a story.

A dimensional mouse allows you to move in three dimensions. They are available through Amazon.

Using virtual map pins, students can add quotes from book, write facts about the locations mentioned, and adding multimedia books. This is a means of having students have greater interactivity with books.

In September, cameras will have cameras with embedded geo-tags. Some buildings are going to start putting in geo-tagging points in the buildings.

Tony Vincent, Audio is Great! Video is Cool! IPods Can Do More!

Learning in Hand iPods is his iPod podcast. See
will speak any text into audio.

You can create cover art and lyrics (or primary source text) through going to Get Info for an individual song.


iPrep Press has comic books you can download to your iPod. BrainQuest also has quizzes for the iPod. allows you to combine Notes files

IPrepPress allows you to download a dictionary and many primary sources. Get 100 Words every high school students should know. allows you to download books in the public domain.

iWriter allows you to link stories together as story

iQuizMaker allows you to make quizzes for your iPod. You can also share iQuizzes by going to iQuizShare (

Use monitor mode to make your iSight camera not cause a mirroring effect.

Check out doc imaging and doc scanning on the PC.

Get book making ideas from and check out her handouts on the NECC site

Download handouts from NECC site for Sharon Hirschy about making class books using PPT

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