Saturday, April 21, 2007

Dollhouse c. 2007

Way back in 1977, I purchased an unfinished dollhouse and painstakingly put cedar shingles on the outside, wired the rooms for electricity, used old wallpaper books to create the wallpaper in the rooms, and crocheted my own rugs for the floors. Well, fast forward to 2007, and I am doing the same thing again!

I now have rented my own house, Kathy Schrock's Kaffeeklatsch, but not because I did not enjoy sharing a space with Hodjazz and Leigh. I simply wanted my own place to have more prims (the construction faces that make up the objects in Second Life) so I could both gather and create my own furniture and decorations. I will also be putting in links to lots of educational URLs in the house, but, for now, I am simply having fun creating and decorating. Guess it is the craft-lover in me!

There are plenty of apartments and offices available for rent on Eduisland II, and Fleet Goldenberg, the "landlord", is very responsive and helpful with any technical problems that occur. The cost to rent office space or an apartment is very reasonable, and you would have 250 prims all your own!

See you in SL! (Okay, I really do feel this 3-D MUVE has huge educational implications, but I can still have fun, can't I?)

Kathy Schrock aka Kathy Dryburgh

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Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Second Life Articles and Info

Well, I sent out Second Life as my site of the school week this week, and am happy to see so many educators signing up! I am helping them out a bit, but the tutorials in SL are easy-to-follow, so they don't need too much of my help.

I came across a short YouTube video that gives a brief explanation of Second Life and the role of businesses in the environment.

In addition, here are a variety of articles about SL that discuss various aspects of the metaverse environment.

A Second Life for Middle School Science
Second Life: A Venue for Professional Development?
Second Life: It's Not a Game

Kathy Schrock

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Sunday, April 15, 2007

Second Life update...

Well, Kathy Dryburgh now has her own space in Second Life! Thanks to Ferdi Serim for renting me some space.

I finished decorating today and also learned a tiny bit of the scripting language. I now know how to distribute special T-shirts to people (I made them for the Schrockguide, MassCUE, and my district) and also how to lead users to a URL on the Internet from within Second Life. Here are some pictures of my space, but they do not really do the rooms justice!

I am still learning my way around, but am more and more convinced that Second Life is a viable option for the delivery of online professional development. In addition, I ran into some of my favorite ed-tech gurus today, and it is nice to keep up with them!

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Saturday, April 14, 2007

Tagged...Simply Successful Secrets

I was tagged yesterday by Lucy Gray as part of a project to list a few habits which have helped me become successful in the educational technology arena.

1. I watch a soap opera (Days of Our Lives) on my Tivo each day. I think it is very important to take a break from everything and do something for yourself every day in order to allow the intense periods of hard work to happen.

2. I read everything-- I love RSS because I can quickly skim hundreds of blog posts each day and quickly save the ones that I want to come back to later.

3. I have worked on my Web page, Kathy Schrock's Guide for Educators, for two hours each day since June 1, 1995, and am proud of the fact I continue to add to it and maintain it all on my own. The positive feedback from teachers and others who use the page really supports my efforts!

4. I always answer every email. I get lots of requests for assistance, and, although sometimes I just give the requester the tool or technique for finding what they need, I do my best to help. Again, I think this makes me approachable, and has contributed to my success in the ed tech world. (I also often know of trends before they become mainstream from the questions I get asked, and I get a head-start on learning about something new!)

5. I re-invent myself every year. Although information literacy is near and dear to my heart, I truly take on a new topic each year to study about in-depth, and then share the information wherever I am able. I have run the gamut of topics including handhelds, critical evaluation, effective searching, primary source material, technology phobias, Web 2.0, online tools, yadda, yadda. I feel that this keeps me fresh and wide-eyed with wonder, as well as allowing me to share a new passion with my audiences!

6. I learn at LEAST one new thing every day. (And usually lots more than one!) I love to learn, I love to take risks, and I love sharing my discoveries!

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Saturday, April 07, 2007

Kathy takes a kaffee break in SL

Kathy Dryburgh visits the Kaffeeklatsch and sits down to enjoy a cup o' joe!

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New Web 2.0 tools

I have so many new Web 2.0 tools to add to my NECC '07 presentation, the presentation is now about 2 hours long! I am going to have to replace some of the "oldies" with their newer cousins.

Some I have been playing with this morning.

yourminis: an online aggregrator which is both pretty and functional, with a host of widgets to add to your page, a tabbed interface to add additional pages, and the ability to add your own RSS feeds a online brainstorming, basic concept-mapping tool; not collaborative in real time yet, but an easy interface to use with students or at a meeting

peepel: another online application offer, but this one allows you to keep the applications (WP, SS, calculator) all open at the same time in your browser window

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