Friday, December 30, 2005

Audiobooks in the author's own voice

I have been an Audible.com subscriber for almost two years (with a few breaks to catch up with listening to my purchases!) I mostly listen to fiction on my devices (iPod Mini, Treo650, Palm T|X, or iPod Nano) while traveling by train, plane, or automobile.

The narrators of the audiobooks are great and keep me interested. (I especially enjoyed the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants series), but I have recently purchased two items, with the authors of the books acting as the narrator, too. One of these items is Ellen Degeneres' book "The Funny Thing is...", which, being comedy, is best read by the comedian who wrote the text!

The other title, John Battelle's book "The Search: How Google & Its Rivals Rewrote the Rules of Business & Transformed Our Culture" is narrated by Mr. Battelle. I am only through chapter two, but it is wonderful to listen to the audiobook in the author's own voice. Since only the author really knows what he/she means, their inflections and cadence make the book fun to listen to! (Of course, this title is so full of great quotes I will have to buy it in hard copy anyway to savor the text!)

If you have not yet tried the audiobook style of "reading", give it a try!

Kathy

Monday, December 19, 2005

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Screen Captures

One of the pieces of software that I use the most is software that does screen captures. Of course, you can always capture an entire Windows screen by simply choosing PRINT SCREEN and pasting into a document or image-editing program. (And, on a Mac, there are easy ways to do this within the operating system!) However, for training purposes, sometimes you just want to include part of a page or just an open window. There are commercial programs that do this well and include enhanced features (i.e. ScreenPrint Platinum and Screen Hunter 4.0 Pro and Plus), but there are some free programs that also get the job done in a pinch.

Windows-based machines
ScreenHunter 4.0 Free
http://www.wisdom-soft.com/downloads/downloadfiles.htm

List of other screen capture utilities
http://graphicssoft.about.com/od/screencapturepc/

Macintosh
http://www.pure-mac.com/screen.html
http://graphicssoft.about.com/od/screencapturemac/
...two lists of freeware, shareware, and commercial screen-capture programs

--Kathy Schrock

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Critical Evaluation and the Wizard of Oz

We have a keen interest in tornadoes here in the Schrock household. (My son is even going storm chasing as his high school graduation present in June of 2006!) I found an interesting page put together by one of the pre-eminent storm chasers and retired severe storms researcher with the NSSL, Chuck Doswell, that I could add to my list of bogus sites to use with students.

Case Analysis of a Historic Killer Tornado Event

I have many more links to sites to use when teaching students critical evaluation skills that may be found on this page. If anyone has any others that they use with students, and that are appropriate for grade seven and up, please let me know!

P.S.
Here is an interesting article by Tim Marshall talking about the creation of the tornado in the movie version of the Wizard of Oz. Here is a link to the book he obtained his information from.

Kathy