Monday, July 30, 2012

LIS 629 Final Reflection - Melanie Miller

Value of the course in preparing me to be a 21st century librarian

I don’t believe that one can be a 21st century librarian without Web 2.0 technology skills.  This is where information is today and as information brokers, teachers and communicators we must be conversant with it and even specialize in it.   Witness that the opening ceremonies of the London Olympics celebrated Tim Berners-Lee.  Times Square is currently sporting a huge tag cloud billboard.  I was somewhat aware of this before taking the course but I was unaware of the degree to which this technology has impacted information before I was introduced to the cornucopia of software applications and tools which were introduced to us in this course.  It was like opening a treasure chest.

My only regret is that I did not take remedial computing instruction prior to the class because I would have been able to explore the applications as they were being taught rather than learning them.  This was why I did not attempt to evaluate any of the tools because my limited competency would have shortchanged them.  It was therefore helpful to have, accompanying the instruction on the tools themselves, examples of how to integrate the tools into teaching and into the school library program.

I was overwhelmed with the sheer volume of material that was taught to me in those five days.  I would not have believed that it was possible if I had not witnessed it.   In summation, the the course was extremely valuable.

How do I foresee integrating these tools into my teaching?

As a prospective secondary-level library teacher, my first priority would be to help students perform research through integration of social bookmarking tools such as Diigo.   Google is THE reference tool of the 21st century, so I would engage students in all the wonderful Google applications we learned since they network to the searches so beautifully.  Once you’re inside Google, you’re in its world.  We didn’t have time to explore Google Earth, but after I read the textbook I was conceiving maps for everything from Stratford-on-Avon to Christopher Robin’s backyard.  I would incorporate Glogster and Photostory into just about everything.  They were my personal software favorites, probably because I found them so much fun and easy to navigate.  

Compare How I Felt before the Course Started and How I Feel Now That I Have Completed the Course and Assignments

I stand by my statement that my computing competency level was insufficient for this class at the outset.  Having said that, I was amazed when I began to be able to master some of the tools and felt inestimable joy when I did.  The organization of the course was superb and I repeat my statement that I would not have believed that you could teach that volume of material in that period of time.  
If anyone had told me before the course started that by the end I would be able to develop a school library website, develop an efolio wiki, create a Photostory trailer, embed a glog or an avatar, I would not have believed it was possible.  I’m flat-out amazed at what I learned to do and I’m a fan of social networking as an educational resource.

What Social Networking Tools Will I Continue to Use?

All of them!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Day 5:  Cookies I made are Jan Hagels.  It's a classic recipe which only varies a little from one source to another.  Here's the recipe:

1 c butter
1 c sugar
1 egg, separated
1 tsp almond extract
2 c sifted flour
1/2 c sliced almonds
Cinnamon sugar (1 Tbls sugar, 1/4 tsp cinnamon)

Beat butter and sugar.  Add egg yolk (set white aside).  Beat until fluffy.  Blend in almond extract.  Stir in flour.  Spread batter evenly around 15" x 10" x 1" pan.

Beat egg white until foamy.  Spread foam evenly over dough.  Sprinkle sliced almonds evenly across top.  Sprinkle cinnamon sugar over nuts.

Bake at 350 degrees for 15 - 20 minutes.  Cut into squares.  Makes about 3 dozen.

Off to play with more final project tools.  LIS 629 is like Mark's Leatherman - a curation of tools! :)

Monday, July 23, 2012

Day 4 Reflection:  I enjoyed Sliderocket and found it navigable.  The other class presentations were absolutely  fabulous.  I hope to get to that level someday.  Glogster was hard for me to edit even after I went to the edu site so I ended up embedding the glog from my original Glogster.  When I read the textbook two weeks ago, the tool which most sparked my imagination for school library use was Google Earth.  Don't know if we'll get to that but it was beautiful software.  Off to bake for tomorrow!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Digital Storytelling Blog Reflection:

I loved the Photostory software.  I can imagine that students would be able to create many beautiful and wondrous products with such software.  It's a professional level promotional tool for teachers/librarians as well.  The Tagul wordcloud was straightforward and fun.  Couldn't find a place to put my wiki address on the class wiki so here it is (I think!):  Both the photostory and the cloud are under the G. Samples page. :)

Friday, July 20, 2012

3rd Day Reflection

Two heroes, Carlo and Mark, appeared on either side of me and valiantly protected me against my enemies - ignorance and incompetency.  It was a much better experience today because I could actually keep up; the result of their guidance.  Whether I can translate that into action flying solo remains to be seen.  There was a lot to cover today so it's somewhat of a blur at present - social bookmarking, Google docs and all the lovely Google apps.  I don't know how people assimilate that volume of material but they seem to do so.   I don't comment much on the value of interactive Web tools to libraries and librarians because the value is patently obvious.  I do realize that it widens the digital divide between those who can navigate it and those who can't.  As I write this I'm listening to the news from Aurora, CO.  Newscasters mentioned the immediacy of a shared reaction resulting from social networking.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Day 2:  Social Bookmarking:  Installed the Diigo toolbar and added my Diigo user info to the class list.  Couldn't figure out the tag process and thus couldn't share any.  Your PLN:  Joined Library 2.0 and TeacherLibrarianNing.  RSS:  Subscribed to Google Reader and transported Unquiet Librarian and Neverendingsearch Blog to my blog through Reader.  Scoop.It:  Joined Scoop.It as a bird rehabilitator.  Twitter:  Had joined Twitter, followed folks, need to read "getting started" in greater detail.  Facebook:  Will join Facebook presently.  Flickr:  Joined Flickr.  Book Communities:  Subscribed to Librarything.  Really wanted Web Junction also but there was a login problem.  Enjoyed all the videos.  Wish I could go further than start-up with all of these but I will need some time to explore.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

629 Dance Day 1

This is about what I expected.  The VOKI didn't activate so I created an avatar which never took and I missed the embedding instructions in the process.   I couldn't find the audio icon on the MAC.  Mark helped me connect it.

The video under discussion which I couldn't get to play without assistance extolled the virtues of YouTube contributions with comparisons in input to broadcast network input since the inception of networks.  That's only meaningful if you can get the technology to work for you.  The summary identified the convergence of media from a building to a device to a blood cell.  That won't affect me because I won't be technologically capable enough to use it.