What is the purpose of this blog?

"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." - Arthur C. Clarke

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Schools, like newspapers, must adapt or die

Thoughts about the inevitable march of technology and how it will dramatically change the landscape of our schools...

Technology will force physical schools to adapt and go online and morph and change or die, similar to newspapers. If you look at how radically technology is changing the face of the newspaper industry, who can say it won't have the same effect on our school system? With so much content "going digital" isn't it just a matter or time before schools morph their ways "online" with "distance learning" and the like? How will that change our schools physically? What will teachers become?

And when we do produce online content, with M.I.T. and Yale and Harvard offering free online content of a wide variety of courses, how can small schools distinguish themselves and produce any content of value that will make people want to go online and learn from them and not the big boys or others who have already produced content?

What's the goal, the one unifying everything that we need from technology? It's really quite simple... One device with ubiquitous access to information via the internet. That's all we need. Paper, gone. Books, gone. Turning in physical anything, gone. With your one device (be it a tablet, a laptop, a kind of iTouch) you will be able to access and share information and collaborate. This is all you or anyone will need.

And while we're at it, one of technologies greatest promises is the way it will inform and transform student/teacher collaboration with its assessment tools. Assessment is one of the key components of technology in education. It will be big. It's time to start mining the information highway for visionary ideas on student assessment.

One more important piece of the puzzle! If kids are communicating via social networking what will become of traditional email? They don't even really use it. It's kind of "old school." We have to meet them on their turf and that is quickly becoming on Facebook and Twitter and the like, not dusty old linear email...

Well that's my two cents...

Monday, January 11, 2010

Science Videos with "The Mad Professor"

Merry forwarded me a fantastic article about the "Mad Professor" of Nottingham University. They have an absolute treasure trove of science videos, many featuring Professor Martyn Poliakoff of the University of Nottingham, at the "Nottingham Science Channel" on Youtube. With more than 6 million hits he must be doing something right. Check out the videos by clicking on Nottingham Science here

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Who knew molecules had funny names?

Well I guess I didn't, but this cool website breaks it down and adds a whole lot more. For all you molecule lovers out there... Click Here

Thursday, January 7, 2010

The Project Gutenberg is simply the best source for downloading books online free...

The one, the only, the best, Project Gutenberg. Download books and pop them on your computer, eReader or iPhone and read to your pixels content. Tens of thousands of books to download free. Here is the current Top 100. I was happy to see Sherlock Holmes beat out the Kama Sutra. Works well with the free Stanza app on iPhones by the way. Check out Project Gutenberg by clicking here...

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

The Most Extensive List of Online English Resources I've Ever Seen!

You've got to see it to believe it! Click here to see hundreds of resources...

Seems to be the week of Music and English

Been finding a lot of interesting Music and English sites lately. This one is the Wikipedia Sound/List "an incomplete list of full length copyleft/public domain musical works available on Wikipedia" It's pretty extensive for an incomplete list. From Bach to Boccherini and all points you'll find a lot of useful classical sound files. Check it out here...

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Wow! Audio recordings of English Literature from Middle Ages to 20th Century.

Too cool! Norton Anthology of audio recordings from Beowulf to W.H. Auden!
  • Middle Ages
  • 16th Century
  • Early 17th Century
  • Restoration and the 18th Century
  • Romantic Period
  • Victorian Age
  • 20th Century

Fantastic resource for English teachers and readers and writers everywhere!

Resources on American Lit, Reading Fiction, Sherlock Holmes, Medieval Literature, Major European Novels, Spanish Poetry and tons more. Please check it out here!