Friday, October 26, 2007

New Life for Second Life in K-12

Rather than re-post the information I posted already on another blog, here is the link to my thoughts on the current and future use of Second Life as a professional development venue for K-12 educators.

Kathy Schrock

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Monday, October 15, 2007

iPod touch online applications for education

Below is a short list of online applications I have tried with the iPod touch that may be useful to support teaching and learning. Many of the sites only work with the Safari browser on the iPod touch or iPhone, so may not be viewable in your browser.

...over 20,000 books to read plus the ability to upload your own to allow students access to your syllabus, information, etc.

...a simple online to-do list that also includes a mini-blog that can be aggregated

Listingly easy-to-use application that would allow a student to create a list for each subject, project, or personal reason

Ask A Word
... a free spellchecker, thesaurus, dictionary, and encyclopedia

Today in History
...shows important events formatted for the iPod touch screen

World Book This Day in History
...another chronicle of events happening on this day

iPhone Web Docs
...create folders on a virtual desktop, save your notes, and even embed URL's; a very useful tool accessible from a desktop, too, for printing or editing

Glide Mobile
...a mobile component of a Flash-based desktop application, it allows you to uploads items to the mobile site

Widgetop Mobile
...a "widget-like" interface for common sites and reference tools

Moon Phase for iPhone
...see the current phase of the moon or change the date to view in the future

Starry Night Mobile
...see the view the day and night skies for anywhere in the world, on any date

...this is an online notes creator and manager that is available via the iPod touch and the desktop

Netvibes Mobile of the best RSS aggregators for the desktop is available for the touch!

...conversion calculator formatted for the iPod touch

Belfry SciCalc
...access this scientfic and programming calculator from the iPod touch

Nametag for iPhone
...type in your name and use the touch as a nametag!

Quote of the Day
...a possible use of this is a writing reflection journal

Brainy Quote through thousands of quotes by person, topics, or keywords; includes today's birthdays

***UPDATE 10/17/07***
Google Docs has come to the handheld in read-only format right now, but hopefully will be editable in the future.

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Monday, October 08, 2007

Facebook and Second Life

Two of my favorite apps, Facebook and Second Life, have come together with Andy Powell's creation of a Facebook application called "Second Friends." It allows you to see which one of your Facebook friends (who use Second Friends, also), are using Second Life!


First search in the application listings in Facebook to add the Second Friends application to your Facebook profile.

Then, in Second Life, you must visit the Second Friends kiosk on Eduserv Island in Second Life and touch it to obtain a secret key. The SLURL for the kiosk is:

Andy is planning on the incorporation of some other cool features in the future!

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Saturday, October 06, 2007

Tiny Devices and 1-to-1

I am writing this from my new Fujitsu U810 tablet computer with the 5.6" screen, I am investigating the use of the iPod touch with a class of high school students, I am on the list to be notified when I can purchase the XO laptop with their "Give One, Get One" program starting soon, and I am waiting patiently for the 7" Asus EeePC (at, it seems, about $200 or $250) to come out so we can start realistically thinking about one device per student.

See a trend here? I have been saying for years that much of what one needs to do with technology can be done on a "smaller" device. (And, as many of you can attest, bothering anyone who would listen to me and put up with my excitement at what my newest gadget could do!)

Now that so many applications are available as Web 2.0 applications, which are Web-based and require little processing power on the user's device, I think the time has come to start promoting a "1-to-1 Device" initiative for schools.

At the same time, we need to purchase pods of "blinged-out" computers, the production stations students will need for their heavy duty processing applications (video, CAD, audio editing). We also should include scanners, Flash card readers, Firewire ports, midi keyboards, and any other input devices students might need for their creative purposes.

Even of more importance to me is the fact students need to have wirelessly connected devices with them 24x7. We are becoming a society of information consumers, and students should have access to information sources, both on the open Web and in subscription databases, wherever and whenever they need it. They should be able to communicate and collaborate with others via social networks and Web 2.0 content-creation tools.

I think these small, low-cost, well-made, feature-rich, crop of mobile devices can meet this need. Anybody with me?

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