Tuesday, March 30, 2010

My Bookmarks and Annotations 03/30/2010

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

My Bookmarks and Annotations 03/28/2010

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Google Webinar - Maine 207 Lessons that Integrate Google Apps

Here are the resources from the webinar:
Recorded video
Published slide presentation
Q&A Transcript
Maine Township case study

If you would like more information about Google Apps Education Edition, please visit the website at www.google.com/apps/schools. You can also access and review previous webinars (including Maine 207's webinar on deploying Google Apps) in the Google Apps Education Resource center

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

My Bookmarks and Annotations 03/23/2010

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

My Bookmarks and Annotations 03/18/2010

  • The U.S. Department of Education stuck to its guns in releasing final rules for the $650 million Investing in Innovation, or i3, grant program, standing firm in the face of criticism that its proposed guidelines demanded too much from applicants in the way of private-sector match and evidence to back up their proposals.
    In the final rules and application for the program, released March 8, department officials left intact a demand that applicants secure 20 percent in matching funds from the private sector.
    But in a nod to concerns that such a requirement could be burdensome, particularly to smaller districts and in a difficult economy, the department relaxed the timing so that prospective grant recipients don’t need to secure the private funding until they’ve been notified that they are in line to win.
    In essence, a foundation or other organization will know that its matching donation is a sure-fire bet.

    tags: i3

  • From the time we wake up in the morning to the moment we call it a day, and every moment in between (think bedroom, bathroom and dinner table), we’re checking in on our favorite social media sites.
    This conclusion comes from data gathered by an independent study (commissioned by Retrevo), which surveyed 1,000 online individuals.
    Per the report, our Facebook and Twitter activities continue even after we’ve hit the hay, with 48% of respondents checking in on activity when they wake up in the middle of the night or as soon as they wake up in the morning. Unsurprisingly, these night owl social media behaviors skew heavily toward those under the age of 25.
    iPhone users are the most social of the respondent pool and were significantly more likely to check or update Twitter or Facebook from bed — many before turning on the TV in the morning. Several also use these sites to consume their morning news. The iPhone’s app and web experience is clearly making it even easier for the young socialites to maintain their Internet presence regardless of their physical station in life.
    The study also found that 56% of social media users check Facebook once a day, 32% don’t mind being interrupted by an electronic message while eating and 24% of respondents under the age of the 25 have no problem with digital communication while on the pot.
    A few other interesting data points from the study include:
    - 12% of respondents check/use Facebook every couple of hours
    - 62% of individuals over the age of 25 see electronic communications during a meeting, meal, sex or bathroom act as unwanted interruptions
    - 23% of iPhone owners primarily get their morning news from Twitter and Facebook

    tags: social, media

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

My Bookmarks and Annotations 03/13/2010

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Friday, March 12, 2010

My Bookmarks and Annotations 03/12/2010

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

My Bookmarks and Annotations 03/11/2010

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

My Bookmarks and Annotations 03/10/2010

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Sunday, March 07, 2010

My Bookmarks and Annotations 03/07/2010

  • CI-MSU will provide podcasts of a series of video- and audio-based Chinese learning materials of both beginning-level and intermediate-level. All the materials are organized in coherent stories with language and culture explanations and are suitable to long-term systematic learning of Chinese. There will also be a series that focuses on the issues relevant to living, working and visiting China. This series can serve as a nice introduction of Chinese language and culture for those who want to prepare for their visit to China. Moreover, there will also be a series that is developed specifically for preschoolers and children. In addition to those existent materials, podcasts of adapted daily broadcasts from TV and radio stations will also be provided. Those podcast materials will be available in the coming month.

    tags: msu, programs, language, onlinelearning

  • From Publishers Weekly
    Fox, head of a girl's boarding school in New Jersey, writes about a strengths-based curriculum she developed and implemented with great success. She not only presents a workbook that can be utilized by educators and parents, but also offers a convincing argument in favor of over-turning outdated curriculums and teaching methods. Instead of focusing on weaknesses, Fox submits that children do far better when the focus is on their strengths. Childhood is for "creative dreaming," not preparation for standardized tests. Fox identifies three types of strengths: activity, learning and relationship strengths, and helps parents guide their children toward self-discovery, explaining that true strengths include not only what a child is good at, but what she enjoys and makes her feel strong. The book is written in a lively and engaging style, and sprinkled with anecdotes from Fox's teaching life and her own experiences as a student who was frustrated and uncomfortable in a traditional school setting. Clearly, writing is one of Fox's strengths, as is her inspiring passion for helping kids lead meaningful lives.
    Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

    tags: strengths, books2read

  • tags: strengths, movement, edreform

  • Grammarly is your personal proofreader and grammar coach. Check your writing for grammar, punctuation, style and more.

    tags: grammarly

  • Chua (World on Fire), a Yale law professor and daughter of immigrants, examines a number of world-dominant powers—a none too rigorously defined group that lumps together the Persian, Roman, Mongol and British empires with the contemporary United States—and argues that tolerance and multiculturalism are indispensable features of global economic and military success. Such hyperpowers rise, Chua argues, because their tolerance of minority cultures and religions, their receptivity to foreign ideas and their willingness to absorb and empower talented provincials and immigrants lets them harness the world's human capital. Conversely, hyperpowers decline when their assimilative capacities falter and they lapse into intolerance and exclusion. The sexy concept of a world-dominant hyperpower, in addition to being somewhat erratic—the smallish Dutch Republic makes the cut, while the far-flung (but inconveniently intolerant) Spanish empire doesn't—is doubtful when examining an America that can hardly dominate Baghdad and not much more convincing when applied to earlier hegemons. Chua does offer an illuminating survey of the benefits of tolerance and pluralism, often as a tacit brief for maintaining America's generous immigration policies. (Nov.) Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

    tags: books2read

  • The idea that America was being harmed because its schools were not keeping up with those in other advanced nations emerged after Sputnik in 1957, took a firm hold on education policy when "A Nation at Risk" appeared in 1983, and continues today. Policy makers justify this concern by pointing to evidence showing that, for individuals within the U.S., higher test scores predict a number of important life advantages, such as going on to college and making more money as an adult. Since Sputnik, the evidence driving worries about the performance of U.S. schools have come primarily from a series of international achievement testing programs that started in 1964 with the First International Mathematics Study (FIMS). This was followed by the Second International Mathematics Study (SIMS), the Third International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS), and, most recently, the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA). In this article, the author shows that for the U.S. and for the top dozen or so most-advanced nations in the world, standings in the league tables of international tests are worthless. There is no association between test scores and national success, and, contrary to one of the major beliefs driving U.S. education policy for nearly half a century, international test scores are nothing to be concerned about. America's schools, he asserts, are doing just fine on the world scene. (Contains 4 endnotes.)

    tags: tests, standardized_tests

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Saturday, March 06, 2010

My Bookmarks and Annotations 03/06/2010

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

My Bookmarks and Annotations 03/03/2010

  • This paper explores the strategies of implementing email in ESL writing classroom. It focuses on how email can be implemented in a collaborative learning ambience incorporating the stages of writing process approach and pair work activity. Both teachers and learners hold crucial responsibilities to ensure success of the approach employed. Additionally, the learning ambience, task structure and task content contribute to the positive implication of the learning approach. It is hoped that the strategies will offer insights for further action to be explored to attain a better understanding of how learners interact in a collaborative learning environment via email discussions and the impact on their writing performance particularly in ESL writing classrooms.

    tags: gmail, learning, collaborative

  • Students find writing projects much more meaningful when they have an audience for their efforts. Get students involved with writing letters and email to real people.

    tags: email, collaboration, expert, gmail

  • Journaling in the classroom has traditionally been a paper process. E-journaling eliminates some of the drawbacks of journaling mentioned above. Additionally, this “intellectual exchange allows faculty members to encourage, guide, and engage student in an academic venue” and “builds a rapport between faculty and student that contributes to positive learning experiences and successful outcomes” (Phipps, 2005, ¶ 1).

    Consequently, some instructors have turned to electronic media for journaling. The type of media used varies, but Longhurst and Sandage (2004) stated that “choosing pedagogically appropriate technology with the lowest support requirement and the simplest learning curve encourages faculty adoption and student learning alike” (p. 69). They noted that the appropriate technology does not feel disruptive or intimidating. For this reason Longhurst and Sandage (2004) chose email as their method of transmitting journal entries. Another group (Duerden et al., n.d.) chose to use Webnotes™ as their technology for journaling. In both of these studies, the authors found that the use of an electronic means of transmitting journal entries: (a) simplified the entire procedure, (b) was easier and more timely than using paper, and (c) provided more opportune feedback to the students.

    tags: journaling, email, gmail

  • all 428 sixth graders at Linwood Middle School in North Brunswick, N.J., are charting their own academic path with personalized student learning plans — electronic portfolios containing information about their learning styles, interests, skills, career goals and extracurricular activities.
    These new learning plans will follow each sixth grader through high school, and are intended to help the students assess their own strengths and weaknesses as well as provide their parents and teachers with a more complete profile beyond grades and test scores.

    tags: ILP, progress, learning

  • tags: gmail, googleapps, tutorials, guide

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Keeping up with Your School Via RSS

You may have heard that Maine 207 (my district) has been in the throws of financial problems - I mean - challenges this year. This has caused a great deal more media coverage of our schools this year. Keeping up with what is reported on us in the news is important. Watching for correctable information is essential.

This year I have really been using my
RSS aggregator (mine is Google Reader, but there are several others out there) to keep up with the news in local newspapers, blogs, and to monitor information on Wikipedia.

For local newspapers I have set up a search query in Google News. Our school district is Maine 207 and has 3 schools Maine East, South, and West. Separating our news from stuff in the state of Maine is somewhat difficult. So I went into Google News and set up this advanced news search:
  • "Maine South" OR "Maine East" OR "Maine West" OR "Maine Township"
  • Then I limit the location to Illinois
This allows me to usually only get stories that are related to my school district.

The next thing I monitor is local blogs, union blogs, or other related webpages that discuss district matters. Many of these come with an RSS feed, however others do not. I have started following these using Google's new feature that looks for changes on web pages. I then add that to the RSS feed.

The last big item I keep track of are Wikipedia entries for our schools. I follow the RSS feed for the pages and their discussions. I have had to make a couple of requests for changes to be made on our pages this year. You can see how this was done on the Maine 207 Discussion Page. I didn't make the changes myself because it would be a conflict of interest (COI) according to Wikipedia. In these cases a different editor came in and made some impartial changes.

Google Reader is my tool of choice for keeping up with the news on these sites (yeah I know you are shocked that I like a Google product). However the actual aggregator doesn't make a difference. Keeping tabs on the media climate is important and RSS feeds make it easier to do.

My Bookmarks and Annotations 03/02/2010

  • ICTS Superintendent Study Guide

    tags: no_tag

  • Migrating data away from Google Apps
    If you've decided to use another solution for your organization's email, calendars, documents, and sites, don't forget to migrate your data to your new solution before deleting your Google Apps account.
    Here's a list a data transfer options available for Google Apps:

    tags: googleapps, exit

  • FERPA is a Federal law that applies to educational agencies and institutions that receive funding under a program administered by the U. S. Department of Education. The statute is found at 20 U.S.C. § 1232g and the Department's regulations are found at 34 CFR Part 99.

    Under FERPA, schools must generally afford students who are 18 years or over, or attending a postsecondary institution:

    access to their education records
    an opportunity to seek to have the records amended
    some control over the disclosure of information from the records.

    tags: FERPA, googleapps, legal

  • The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99) is a Federal law that protects the privacy of student education records. The law applies to all schools that receive funds under an applicable program of the U.S. Department of Education.
    FERPA gives parents certain rights with respect to their children's education records. These rights transfer to the student when he or she reaches the age of 18 or attends a school beyond the high school level. Students to whom the rights have transferred are "eligible students."

    tags: FERPA, googleapps

  • Background
    The Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA) is a federal law enacted by Congress to address concerns about access to offensive content over the Internet on school and library computers. CIPA imposes certain types of requirements on any school or library that receives funding for Internet access or internal connections from the E-rate program – a program that makes certain communications technology more affordable for eligible schools and libraries. In early 2001, the FCC issued rules implementing CIPA.
    What CIPA Requires
    Schools and libraries subject to CIPA may not receive the discounts offered by the E-rate program unless they certify that they have an Internet safety policy that includes technology protection measures. The protection measures must 2block or filter Internet access to pictures that are: (a) obscene, (b) child pornography, or (c) harmful to minors (for computers that are accessed by minors). Before adopting this Internet safety policy, schools and libraries must provide reasonable notice and hold at least one public hearing or meeting to address the proposal.
    Schools subject to CIPA are required to adopt and enforce a policy to monitor online activities of minors.
    Schools and libraries subject to CIPA are required to adopt and implement an Internet safety policy addressing: (a) access by minors to inappropriate matter on the Internet; (b) the safety and security of minors when using electronic mail, chat rooms, and other forms of direct electronic communications; (c) unauthorized access, including so-called “hacking,” and other unlawful activities by minors online; (d) unauthorized disclosure, use, and dissemination of personal information regarding minors; and (e) measures 3restricting minors’ access to materials harmful to them.

    tags: cipa, Law, internetsafety, internet_safety, government, Safety, Security, technology, googleapps

  • University of Arizona Internal review of Google Apps for Education

    tags: googleapps

  • Security and PrivacyPrintTwo of the most common topics of questions regarding Google in general, and Google Apps specifically, are security and privacy. We take both topics very seriously and truly believe that our offerings are a great option for customers on both fronts. Our business is built on our users' trust: trust in our ability to properly secure their data and our commitment respect the privacy of the information they place in our systems by not giving that information to others or using it inappropriately.In order to help answer some of the many questions we receive and to dispel some common misconceptions we encounter; we have created this FAQ and the corresponding Google Apps security whitepaper. We hope this helps to answer some of your questions about Google's position on these important issues!
    If you need to report an abuse issue, learn more about reporting abuse issues to our team.

    tags: apps, and, security, privacy, google

  • Getting Started GuidePrint
    For Postini for Google Apps

    About the Service
    Learn more about the features and how the service works with Google Apps Mail.

    What You Get: Default Settings for Your Service
    See what features we've already set up for you. We'll also show you how to customize them if you want.

    First Steps: Things to Do After Activation
    Here are some tasks that we recommend you perform as soon as possible, as well as some ways to see how your service is working.

    Beyond the Basics: Essential Tasks for Administrators
    After you've performed the initial tasks after activation, you're ready to check out other things you can do with your service.

    tags: apps, google, started, postini, guide

  • This page offers performance information for Google Apps services. Unless otherwise noted, this status information applies to consumer services as well as services for organizations using Google Apps.

    Check back here any time to view the current status of the services listed below. For all other information or to report a problem, please visit the Google Apps Help Centers.

    tags: google, status, dashboard, googleapps, apps, gmail, google_apps

  • Inappropriate Start Page GadgetsPrint
    The Google Apps team recognizes the importance of preventing access to inappropriate content in educational institutions. Currently the Google Apps team has implemented a feature that will allow EDU administrators to limit the gadgets that users see in their Start Page.

    Note: We do not recommend using this feature unless you intend to only whitelist a small number of gadgets for your students.
    With this new feature, only official Google developed gadgets will show up in the 'Add Stuff' link. If you want your users to see other gadgets, you will need to add specific gadgets by URL. Please take the following steps to add gadgets by URL:

    Log in to your control panel
    Click on the Start Page service
    Click Customize in the Start Page section
    Navigate to the Content tab
    Click Add Stuff
    Click Create custom content
    On the POP up screen, select either 'Static text, images, and links', 'Frequently updated content section' or 'Google Gadget' depending on what custom content you want to make available to your users.
    Enter URL of section code field.
    Additionally, if a user already has an inappropriate gadget added to their Start Page, this will need to be removed manually. Administrators can log in to user's accounts to remove any inappropriate gadgets.

    If you would like to turn on this feature, please navigate to this form to submit your request. Note that this feature can only be enabled after your Start Page has been published. Please check your Start Page editor in a week to confirm that this feature has been enabled by checking for limited gadget availability.

    If you'd like to unpublish your Start Page until the feature has been turned on, please see our article on removing the start page once it's published.

    tags: google, apps, start, gadgets, google_apps, googleApps, inappropriate, page

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.