Monday, July 04, 2011

Now blogging at Webbed Feat

As documented over the past couple of years, this blog has been in transition. It is now merged with the Webbed Feat blog maintained by Sylvia Currie. See you there!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Another transition for this blog

Two years ago Kate Britt retired from working on this blog and after a selection process to find someone to carry on the tradition of sharing information about tools and resources of interest to educational practitioners, passed the torch to the Educational Technology Users Group (ETUG). Well, actually what happened was she passed the torch to me, and then I brought the idea of ETUG members maintaining the blog to the Steering Committee (of which I am a member). The history of this transition process is tagged 'from pink to green'.

The Steering Committee saw this as an opportunity for ETUG members to give back to the wider edtech community by sharing the many tools and resources they come across, test, evaluate, and critique on a daily basis. These types of conversations weren't happening as we had expected in our own community space, and we felt that posting to this active blog (using Blogger -- so easy!) would encourage more sharing. We also saw a shared space as a way for members to ease into a blogging practice.

We're now at a point where we are revisiting this decision. A few things have happened during the time since we took on this project -- some unexpected, some not so surprising in hindsight, and some very exciting!
  1. Few ETUG members stepped up to become a blog author. 
  2. More post secondary institutions in British Columbia (where most ETUG members are employed) now have their own blogs for sharing tools and resources related to teaching and learning, and educational technology.
  3. Some of us have our own personal educational blogs, so coming to this blog to post seemed like an extra step. (In fact, I often cross-posted to my own blog, because the content seemed appropriate for both.)
  4. ETUG now has a new community site using WordPress / BuddyPress (still in the very early launch phase), where we expect to see a higher level of activity than our previous community space. 
From the beginning we talked about changing the URL for this blog, and possibly moving away from blogger altogether. It feels like the right time to make a change, and here's what I'm proposing:
  1. I will merge this blog with my own blog, Webbed Feat, where I will continue to post items of interest to educators... and likely more frequently! 
  2. All blog posts appear in the ETUG community, along with blog posts from other ETUG members, so ultimately we're still carrying on the tradition that Kate began. 
Does this seem like a reasonable plan? Feedback and better ideas always welcome! I'll hold off for a week before making any moves.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Free online event: Blastoff - Taking Education into OERbit

You are invited to participate in this free online event!

December 7, 20:30 - 22:00 GMT
Facilitator: Paul Stacey

Join Paul Stacey on the Starship BCcampus in this journey through the universe of Open Educational Resources (OER). Learn how OER are opening up a new education frontier. Visit OER colonies throughout education space and see for yourself what an OER is and how they are being used to create credentials. Find out how you can use OER in your own teaching and learning practice. Discover how the future of OER is being shaped by Foundations, public government Ministries, and everyday educators who simply choose to become OER space cadets. Buckle up as Paul takes you into OERbit! This session is part of the Professional Learning Series organized by BCcampus, eCampusAlberta, and Alberta North.

Access the details in the Professional Learning Series group at SCoPE.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

30 Web Tools in 30 Minutes

Dean Shareski from Prairie South School District in Saskatchewan prepared this slide show of 30 Web Tools in 30 Minutes for an IT meeting. There are some great recommendations here! 30 for 30

Monday, November 08, 2010

SCoPE Seminar: Blogging in Professional Networks

Facilitator: Glenn Groulx
November 8-26, 2010

This 3-week seminar will cover blogging strategies for participating effectively within professional networks. Topics will include strategies for gathering information from various online sources, organizing these sources within blog posts, and connecting with experts and peers by engaging in way-making activities to explore, find and connect with others.

SCoPE seminars are free and open to the public, and are facilitated by volunteers in the community. There is no need to register. Just show up! To contribute to forum discussions you will need to create an account on the SCoPE site -- a quick process.

Direct link to Blogging in Professional Networks seminar:

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

"Getting Organized in the Google Era"

In “Getting Organized in the Google Era” author Douglas C. Merrill, former CIO for Google, gives us some good tips for optimizing how we manage the information we deal with daily and improve our retention and learning. He provides a good rationale for why we should better use the power of “search”, labels and filters on our email, and share our work in the "cloud". In addition, he outlines how he combines both digital and paper-based techniques for information management. Particularly helpful are the chapter book summaries which he entitles “Encode This”. The final chapter is an annotated list of the authors' favorite software tools, browsers, apps, and gadgets. While the book strongly favours Google applications (no surprise here), Merrill is quick to admit his bias and offers alternate tools we can use. "Getting Organized in the Google Era" is a great primer and particularly helpful for those looking for practical suggestions on how to be more organized, less stressed and integrate work and home life.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

How to Be an Excellent Online Instructor

How to Be an Excellent Instructor is a podcast with Rena Palloff and Keith Pratt about good online instruction and faculty training. These topics are the subject of their forthcoming book, The Excellent Online Instructor.

Palloff and Pratt, authors of several excellent books on online teaching and learning, will be presenting at the 2010 Online Teaching and Learning Conference (OTL2010), October 19-21, 2010.