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Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Jim Crow Jubilee

Jim Crow Jubilee, originally uploaded by Boston Public Library.

Prior to the Civil Rights Act, especially in the mid 1800s, Jim Crow entertainers were white men in "black face" and all the humor was at the expense of black stereotypes. After we watch a few videos and discuss some of the events of the Pre and Post Civil Rights Eras, you will be expected to comment about three photos on your blog.

It was symbolized in Night.

Holocaust Remembrance Day, originally uploaded by erglantz.

Imagery and symbolism are unmeasurable literary tools, they have a power that seeps from the page. After reading Elie Weisel's Night, the power of symbolism should be very clear. Using images from Flickr or several of the other resources we've discussed, create a vodcast that illustrates some of the strongest symbols found in night.

The Melinda Type?

Life in the Hallway, originally uploaded by shadowjak.

Now that we've finished reading Anderson's Speak, how would you say this photo represents Melinda? Give me some character description. If this were during the school year I could see using Flickr to find images or have students find images that relate to characters and their actions. Sites like Flickr and Picassa allow students to pull images from anywhere about anything. I could see myself aligning this Web 2.0 tool with another like Photostory or Animoto and have students create mini character sketches using music and images.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Can I Blog too?

Blogging has become a factor in everyone's life, willingly or not! If you are a fun of politics, news media (CNBC, CNN and the like), Pundit Shows, or even the hilarious Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert and Bill Maher you are definitely influenced by Blogging.

Ariana Huffington, a now world famous author/blogger has made a name for herself via her blog The Huffington Post. So what can blogging do for you or me? Well, a lot! For one, it is very possible that a blog is your favorite news source for movies, clothing, sports, etc. Perhaps blogging has become a hobby or means of keeping in touch with friends and loved one from far away. Blogs are immensely useful and relatively easy to use.

One obvious and growing purpose for the world of blogging is its educational malleability. Teachers and students alike can use blogs for everything for discussion groups, homework, research, all the way through to having a paperless classroom (a more popular goal in today's green conscious world). In my teaching experience I have found many places to make a blogging a tool in the classroom. In the coming school year I hope to set every student up with a blog and have them submit questions and assignments through it.

The New School

The most relevant idea from the reading (they were all quite relevant) is the focus on the nuances of the 21st Century Learner. As I skimmed through the list of new AASL Standards and the portion about "Owning Our Curriculum," I began to realize that the change that is needed in the current educational system must come from within. In the article, "Technology Skills Every Student Needs," Johnson very accurately states that those of us (teacher/librarians) who can, must step up and once again learn how to master the world of information around us, simplify it, and pass it on to our students and colleagues.