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An Educator's Guide to Technology and the Web
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Internet @ Schools

Sep/Oct 2009: Features

A LOOK AT... Digital Photography in School

Looking at the world around us, it seems clear that digital photography and video are here to stay—and they should be used in K–12 education. Equipment prices have dropped significantly; cameras and other digital devices can be placed in students’ hands without concern. In this article, Charlie Doe takes a look at some of the possibilities for the classroom and media center.

Internet2 and School Libraries: The Time Is Now (More Than Ever)

Does the word Internet2 conjure images of a mythical realm off-limits to the masses of web-surfing plebeians? A forbidding place where computer engineers and the academic research elite speak in esoteric computer programming dialects and move terabytes of data through big pipes at the speed of light? At Horace Mann Elementary School in West Allis, Wis., Internet2 is helping transform the school library into the heart of digitally enabled innovation and learning. So what is the real Internet2, and why does it matter to K–12 schools and libraries? James Werle and Louis Fox have the answers!

Social Networking Through Your Library Automation System: What Librarians and Vendors Have to Say

A year ago, Barbara Fiehn wrote in Multimedia & Internet@Schools about the emergence of social networking features being added to school library automation systems. At the time, Follett’s Destiny was the leader among school automation vendors in implementing the social networking or Web 2.0 features, and some schools and media specialists were getting on board. A good deal has transpired in the ensuing year. So here’s an update based on a user survey Barbara did as well as information from interviews she conducted with vendors at the recent American Library Association (ALA) conference in July 2009.

The Collaborative Mind: Tools for 21st-Century Learning [Available Full-Text, Free]

Collaboration is one of the defining characteristics of the 21st century, but many educators are still searching for ways to embrace this idea in their schools. Some technologies facilitate the creation of a collaborative learning environment better than others, but there are a number of technology tools that can lead to collaborative student and teacher engagement while also addressing budgetary and infrastructure issues. This article offers suggestions for overcoming barriers using simple tools that foster complex thinking.

Sep/Oct 2009: Product Reviews

Classworks Web Edition

Sally Finley reviews Classworks Web Edition, an online subscription service that provides individualized standards-based instruction in math, reading, language arts, and science.

Susan Hixson reviews, a subscription-based online resource that provides access to thousands of interactive maps, videos, animated timelines, educational games, and educator resources for teaching earth science, geography, history, and social studies.

Study Buddy Handheld Tutors

Charles Doe reviews the Study Buddy Handheld Tutor, a device that offers electronic multiple choice practice opportunities for students of all ages.

Sep/Oct 2009: Columns

EDITOR'S NOTES: The Collaborative Mind-Set

THE PIPELINE: What Is in the Pipeline? Really! Part 1

It is not unlikely that the corpus of information that today's learners in grade four will encounter as adults will be doubling in minutes. That likelihood should provide pause for every educator. What is their world going to look like, and what are the skills, aptitudes, and competencies we need to be facilitating, teaching, and encouraging? Here, in Part 1 of a two-part series, are some thoughts on where things are and where they’re headed.

THE MEDIA CENTER: The Changing Face of Reference

There is no better way to enhance your knowledge of a topic than to teach it and engage in discussion with a diverse group of graduate students representing various age groups and professional experiences including practicing media specialists, classroom teachers, and paraprofessionals. This column reflects Mary Alice's recent experience teaching an online reference course for Minnesota State University–Mankato and discussions with other media professionals.

BELLTONES: Playing Tag Is Good for You!

As a kid, Mary Ann used to collect insects, setting the critters into their respective boxes and tagging them by laboriously printing information on little slips of paper. Apparently the process of classifying appealed to her deeply, and ultimately lead to … what else? … this month's discussion of tags, folksonomies, and tagging as a participatory sport and useful intellectual activity.

THE TECH EFFECT: These Lessons Pop!

A 9-year-old girl is poised on the surface of the moon, a spaceship and stars in the background. Her fellow voyager, in the form of an orange, cylindrically shaped robot, responds to her conversation with an unintelligible mechanized beep. These two space pioneers are engaged in a lively discourse about the nature and origin of constellations. Is it a Nickelodeon special? The latest remix of Lost in Space? A juvenile version of 2001: A Space Odyssey? Nope. Just business as usual as an elementary school class Johanna Riddle reports on produces another Pawprint Production educational video.

Sep/Oct 2009: In the Spotlight


RenderMan, the software used by Pixar Animation Studios to create Academy Award-winning animated films and visual effects, is now available in a variety of education editions with special pricing options.
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