Tuesday, September 23, 2008

What is a Blog?

This is a post for my JHU Technology and the New Science of Educators course. I was trying to decide how to present information about what a blog is and I decided that what better way than to do it than within a blog post! Plus I can encourage folks to respond to my blog, since they are getting graded on their class participation. (of course anyone out there in the blogosphere is welcome to comment as well) Wow, I love the power of being in education ;)

1)Take a look at this great description of what a blog is from Commoncraft


2) Take a look at the blogs I have tagged on del.icio.us (we will talk about Social Bookmarking in a couple of weeks) http://delicious.com/possbeth/blogs
Make some observations about some of the blogs you look at:
  • What do you see as common components of all/most of these blogs?
  • What are some things that may be very different from one blog to another?
  • What are some of the audiences for these blogs?
  • What are the tone of the blogs?
  • Are all blogs equal? Why or why not?
  • What other comments do you have about these blogs? (Remember you will be choosing a blog to follow for 2 weeks--it can be any of these or any other blog related to your educational interests)
  • How are these education related blogs similar or different from any blogs you may have looked at on a more personal interest level (ie, politics, news, sports, etc)
I look forward to your comments!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Easy As Making a Peanut Butter Sandwich

Wow! It has been 2 months since my last post. Summer just consumed me and I never got a chance to get into a rhythm of blogging. With the new school year, comes new school year resolutions and mine is to blog at least twice a week. It is not that I sat around the pool eating bon bons this summer. I was busy teaching my Web 2.0 graduate course for Johns Hopkins University School of Education and I was working hard to become a PBwiki Certified Educator. I became a PBWiki Certified Educator by completing the PBwiki Summer Camp, a six week online, wiki based Professional Development course on using wikis in education. What a great learning experience! While I have used wikis in my graduate course and as a vehicle for collaboration through the Maryland Assistive Technology Association (check out this awesome wiki for extensive info and resources on AT), participating in this online course gave me an opportunity to learn about many great features available on PBwiki. Did you know that you can add sortable tables to your pbwiki? You can also add footnotes, great Google Gadgets, videos and lots more. The summer camp also went into great detail about security and privacy features available on the different levels of pbwikis. As a bonus, everyone who completed the summer camp (including all the assignments!) got a free Platinum PBwiki for a year, which has lots of great security features (including totally private pages available to only selected members of the wiki--great for staff on a school based wiki). If you want to sign up for the next PBwiki Summer Camp, check out this blog entry from The Daily Peanut, the official blog of PBwiki--the link to sign up is at the bottom of the entry.
Ta, ta for now--I promise to post soon--really.
P.S. Let me know if anyone is actually reading this blog by clicking on the Followers tab at the top of the page!