Weekly Web 2.0 Update – June 30, 2008

This week, my morning thoughts over 2 cups of coffee will be formulated while sitting outdoors at a round, white, chipped and rusted, 60s-style patio table on a deteriorating stone patio in Stanfordville, NY.  I have a spectacular view of the Catskills from the John Johansen Pyramid, high atop Sisters Hill Road.  However, there is no view or signs of civilization on all sides of me.  Right now, I’m having a stare-down with a doe and her two fawns, grazing 50 yards away from me.  The momma deer just won, I blinked first.

Usually, I spend this time browsing the blogs for uses of Web 2.0 in the classroom.  There is no Internet connection at the Pyramid or a coffee house with WiFi in the (hardly can call it a) town of Stanfordville.  Good news, there is electricity and I’m listening to NPR.  I’m not suffering, one little bit, from cyber withdrawal. The NPR host is doing a report on last week’s Personal Democracy Forum Conference in New York.  NPR Senior Producer, Dava Iran Ardalan, had been blogging live from the conference.  Liane Hansen, Weekend Edition host, reviewed a Twitter Debate between McCain and Obama representatives.  And, Elizabeth and John Edwards dropped in on the Monday session via Skype Video.  The theme of the conference seemed to be centered on redefining our democracy in an information age.  

Anymore, “redefining in an information age” seems to be the central theme at our educational conferences.  All factions of our society are going through a “redefining” stage due to electronic media.  We, as educators, have a very important, critical part to play in this redefining stage.   The media industry recognizes this…the entertainment industry recognizes this…businesses and the corporate worlds recognize this…politics and the rest..why doesn’t education?  Why have we marked our lines and drawn swords?  We have.  And, we’re the last ones who should be doing this.  We should be leading the way.
 
Go to Sunday SoapBox at http://www.npr.org/blogs/sundaysoapbox/2008/06/personal_democracy_forum_2008.html and the Personal Democracy Forum at http://www.personaldemocracy.com
Mapping the political blogospherehttp://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20080623-mapping-the-political-blogosphere-personal-democracy-forum-kicks-off.html
For photos of the John Johansen Pyramid go to http://www.flickr.com/photos/nancywozniak/sets/72157605885850647
 
or Nancy Wozniak’s photostream at
http://www.flickr.com/photos/nancywozniak
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Forum Discussions at Web 2.0:  Putting Education through the Changes – http://Web20Group.epsilen.com What the Internet is doing to our brains by Nicholas Carr forum continues to grow with comments and thoughts about Nicholas Carr’s article, “Is Google Making Us Stupid”. The article has caused quite a stir in the blogging community.
New Forums:
-Your First Time in Web 2.0
Program Assessment & electronic portfolios
-Wild, Wonderful World of Wikis
-Building Learning Communities Online

Please browse through and contribute to the forums. Your thoughts and opinions are appreciated.  If you don’t have an Epsilen account, go to http://www.epsilen.com and join.  It’s FREE!
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Member Blogs and Webs Wiki
Check out Elaine Garofoli’s
, SparkFireLearning, instructional technology blog at http://www.sparkfirelearning.com (Highly recommended!)
Post yours on the Member Blog and Wiki site and I’ll add it to our group’s Quicklinks at http://Web20Group.epsilen.com   
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Woz’s Web 2.0 Recommendation of the Week:
wikiHow –
http://www.wikihow.comFor Review, see Wild, Wonderful World of Wikis in our forums or my blog at https://nancywozniak.wordpress.com . Definitely, this is one I’d use in my classroom. Talk about collaborative intelligence. This tool promotes critical thinking. Engage your students in a collaborative How-To project. Let me know what you think? Do you see a use for it, also? What about language, education, science, political science, economics …. The list goes on and on.

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