Sunday, July 29, 2007

Week #5, Thing #12 Rollyo

This could be very useful! I liked using Rollyo and see it as a tool that could be used to keep me organized. It could also be a good source of other sites that other librarians have found useful. And I think it could also be used like Filamentality, to keep thematic web sites organized and listed in a place that could be made public.

I tried a few other folks' searchrolls first, like the one on information literacy. Then I created my own searchroll, which I named "Library VIPs" (very important places) as a simple list of sites that I can access immediately when I am searching for a lesson or idea. You can access my beginning list of library resources through Rollyo under the name above. Sorry, loosing focus... Maybe it is just getting late and I am tired, but I am not feeling very creative or energetic at the moment, so I guess that's all I really have to say about Rollyo right Martha Stewart might say, "It's a good thing." Goodnight!

Week #5, Thing #11 Exploring the Web 2.0 Awards List

First I selected a site from the list of award winners -- I selected a travel search site, because I love to travel. In searching for airfares and deals, I did like that if the carrier only gave a price quote through their own site that it automatically directed you to the correct search screen at the carrier's site. It loaded quickly and I could easily go back to kayak to search for other options on carriers that did list their prices to compare. I also had the ability to sign up for fare alerts.

What was very nice about was that it allowed me to display different styles of screen, each containing different information, so I could choose the one that worked best for me. Having used sites like Travelocity before, I have wished for a better screen layout and kayak was an improvement.

Next, I ventured to Ning to sign up for a social network. Once I registered, which was quick and easy, I browsed through the list of possible networks and was surprised at the variety of groups on their most active list. I checked out "Kids Read" and thought this site could be very useful as a means to share and swap library ideas, dilemmas, and book recommendations.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Week #5, Thing #10 Online image generators

This is fun! What great creative tools to use in the classroom and library! I tried a few, but after making posters and editing images, I then tried the "Warholizer" at fd's Flickr Toys. I took a plain photo of an American Bald Eagle (taken by my son on our recent Alaskan vacation) and turned that into real American pop art. I can envision a fantastic pop art display in my library for next year, made up of images of teachers and students, that might spark interest in styles of art or art history. The main drawback for me using this tool at home during the summer: it took quite a while to load the image and have it transformed.

This exercise had gotten my creative juices (trust me, they have been pretty dried out these past few years that I have been spread between the classroom and the library!) really flowing, however, and I am beginning to get a little excited about what fun I might have with classes this fall!

Week #4, Thing #9 Locating Useful Blogs & Newsfeeds

Having explored several of the tools for finding feeds and blogs that I might find useful, I think I have located several helpful sites/services. I first tried the "Other Tools" links like Feedster,, Syndic8. Then I went back to Blogline's search tool and I found that faster and easier to locate items that I was really interested in having sent my way. I did find an RSS feed through Syndic8 that I did sign up for, but the rest I found through the Blogline's tool and it was faster and easier for me to browse or just select from their list those of interest. I like fast and easy. Bloglines was that :-)

Week #4, Thing #8 RSS Feeds

This is a great way to simplify my life! I like the idea of RSS "really simple syndication" because I can get the news updates or new information that can really benefit me in my work, but I do not have to go to all of the sites to get it; instead it simply comes to me. That is especially useful for the library media teacher who never quite knows exactly what they may be doing that day or when they might get a break to check the Internet!

Monday, July 2, 2007

Week 3, Thing #7 Misc. Technology Blog

Well, I do enjoy technology, but I also have to wonder why so many people waste so much of their time with technology. I appreciate how much my life has been changed for the better, time saved, easier communication, faster services, etc. by technology, but I worry that many humans (especially teens) are disconnecting themselves from other humans by connecting with machines 18 hours+ a day.

I love my cell phone, but only use it about once or twice a day. I enjoy digital photography, but still like the unpredictability of film. I like the portablility of an MP3 player, but don't listen to it when I am with other people. I guess what I'd like to see is a balance...but I don't think kids today understand, nor are they getting enough guidance to teach them how to find this balance between relating to humans as well as technology.

So that's my vent. Love it, hate it, but we can't live without it, technology is here to stay!

Week 3, Thing #6 Flickr Fun, Mashups and 3rd Party Sites

This was fun to browse. You can certainly search and find a wide variety of images, so many demonstrating a lot of talent too. I had no idea what a mashup was before, but the curriculum connections have given me some ideas as to how they can be used to create interest in the library and in the classroom.

I tried the trading card creator and that was fun! What a great project idea for teachers or promotional idea for the library!

Week 3, Thing #5, Exploring Flickr

Well, I actually explored Flickr back in early June, but I had misplaced my blog log-in information and then had a very hectic last week of school and left for vacation. I was so frustrated because I had tried everything with Google to reset my password and it would not let me! So I finally decided to give it another try with fresh eyes today and, although it still took quite a while, I did manage to log back in finally. Hooray! So, as for Flickr, as I recall it was pretty easy to use. I had to go back a re-create my work, taking new photos and uploading them, but all-in-all, this was a user-friendly service.