tech workshops are usually extremely boring for me because participants come with differing levels of experience, and the presenters are usually ALWAYS dealing with folks who have no clue that a computer has an on/off switch! this one is a little different, but still has failed to answer my big tech question:


anyway, i thought i’d chart my journey for this workshop, mainly so i won’t forget what i was “supposed” to learn!!

from friday: here’s my new avatar:

extremely cool, huh??? and i learned how to capture a screen on my mac, a one-step process, as opposed to PCs — a 4-step process at least!! i love mac-alicious! i’m still not sure about the reasons for the avatars, except maybe to use instead of a real pic, but there’s a “real” person…i can see this being cool and safer for my kiddos. we used the program on skype for this one, but i’d take my students to: weeworld — much better interface. this is lily’s homework for the weekend!!


(1) here’s my animoto video (hopefully it uploads)…

okay, i just figured out that animoto lets you upload/share to youtube, so how flipping convenient is that???? also, people who don’t use the headphones but make us listen to the music they are trying to decide on drives me NUTS!!!

(2) edmodo — okay, well, i really want to figure out how to use edmodo. i can’t figure out how it’s different/better/stupider than google docs–something i LOVE! i suppose it would be safer because my students would have a class code, and once they’re in, they’re in. no one else can get into the class unless they have the code. i also have to figure out how to integrate it with the e-chalk stuff for school.

one teacher just said that edmodo’s interface looks like facebook–so that might be my reason for using this as opposed to google for everything. i definitely need time to play with this one and let the kids play for a class period; then we can decide the value of it.

okay, so after playing with the edmodo stuff (and re-reminding myself of my log-in for the gazillionth time!!), i’m pretty sure i’m totally lovin’ this!

(3) blogs — okay, well, i’m not sure that this particular part will be of use to me since i am, as you know, a master-blogger!! hahahahahahaha….i do, however, need to remember to show that “blogs in plain english” video to my students. i need them to start blogging so they can start using the internet more appropriately! i did start an edublogs account for school, so i should seriously be working on that!


so the trainer just said that 5-year-olds are blogging! that’s screwed up crazy!! but, guess what….lily has MORE homework!!! OMG, she’s gonna be SOOOO excited!!!

(4) podcasting — i hate podcasting! but, here i am, “learning” about it again…..just so i can hate on it some more!! haha! anyway, one program they’re showing us is called myna on the website called aviary — apparently aviary, a web-based suite, contains a variety of programs that  help with pod/vodcasts…myna has built-in music, as opposed to audacity where the music has to be imported. no copyright issues!! maybe my students can use this for book reviews. there’s a keyword search which will make the user think about details, adjectives, mood/tone, etc.

(5) voicethread — i’ve heard about this online program before. this summer when i browsed the english companion ning, some teachers had a discussion about using this when commenting on student writing. i LOVE that idea! this is another program i can let lily use…watch this (hopefully!): the three little pigs….

okay, well, i was going to upload my practice voicethread, but it needs revision. i’m going to have to play around with this one to get a better feel for how it will be helpful in the class–i KNOW it will help with conferencing IF i can get all my kids to upload  their writing!!

***here’s my voicethread that i worked on today. i just had to get home to do the audio: the renaissance festival — i had a little help from lily! the neat thing about this program is you can add your own comments to whatever is put up, but the owner can moderate the comments before they go “live”!!


(6) wikis — joy, joy! i know what this is for, but have yet to figure out the best way to use it. let’s see what “experts” say! (as a side note…popcorn noise drives me crazy!!!) okay, i’m not much of a wiki person…i understand that it’s collaborative, but you can’t work on the same page simultaneously or it cancels out what’s already been written. you can do this on google docs…so wikis aren’t even really discussion threads either–just a repository for information. so maybe if i had writing groups, this would work. or if students had 4 different essays to examine/comment on, maybe then it would be beneficial…

(7) google docs & forms: WOW!!! i just took a survey, and there is a HUGE disconnect between the technology i personally use and what i use in my classroom!!!!

(8) wallwisher — i’ve used this program before, but only once. it feels sort of diaroma-ish, but maybe i can find other uses…if i take a screencast of it, i can use it as documentation for my teacher evaluation this year, i think! this is sort of cool because there’s a limited number of characters, so word choice becomes key! this is sort of also like instant messaging…the owner of the wall can delete inappropriate comments. here’s the wall the presenters created for the session:


okay, that’s it!! time to pack up and drive 3 hours home!!