Thursday, September 27, 2012

Create a Customized eBook with Wikipedia entries

Wikipedia fans will love this handy tool:  watch the tutorial to learn how to create
an e-publication using a variety of articles on related topics.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Get Going with Content Curation Tools

After learning from Robin Good, I decided to check out some of the suggested tools for curation to keep up and start my own collections.  Here are some that I looked at today:
Gimme Bar Library

Welcome to Gimme Bar!

Get a head start, fill out your Gimme Bar Library with your goodies from these services:

  • Backup Instagram

  • Backup Twitter

  • Backup Delicious

  • Backup Pinboard

There's an elephant logo, but it's definitely not Evernote!

From the BO.LT website:
"Bolt allows anyone to permanently capture and share anything on the web, including entire, working web pages.  Members create their own collections that they can keep private or share instantly on Bolt or other social networks.  "Bolts" are not just images or links, they are complete, working copies of the pages that can be recalled by links controlled by the user.  These bolts still link to the original page, but when that page goes away, your Bolt stays.  No more diappearing pages or broken link. Once you have Bolted, you can instantly share your Bolts and collections on Tumblr, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and even BufferApp."

Trailmeme is a way to tell stories with Web content.

A short video explaining the concept of trails and what you can do with them!

An awesome curation tool which shares context and relationships.  
I could also see this as an awesome student presentation tool.

More tools worth checking out for personal use:

Tools like,, Blekko, BagTheWeb, BlogBridge, KeepstreamPearltrees.comBundlr  are all worth checking out. 

Howard Rheingold has used Pearltrees to find those pearls on curation!

See also:  DragOnTape for Video Curation  

Robin Good has created a compilation of videos on the topic of curation!  Watch and learn.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Why and How We Should Curate Content for Our Students

Multimedia curator Robin Good believes that content curation and education are intertwined. Recently, Howard Rheingold** posted this video podcast interview in 2011 with Good about curation-"What is is, what it requires, why it's important and how to do it".  

Good's Content Curation for Education and Learning presented @Emerge 2012 also helps you to wrap your mind about how content curation is different than just sharing through social media.  It is the intent to contribute to the global brain which goes deeper than just liking something or tweeting it or re-tweeting. 
Curation is about making sense of a topic for a specific audience. It is not only that the overwhelming abundance of information begs to be organized, it is also the necessity for giving context to information --especially for our students. 

The emergence of open courseware, elearning depositories, creative commons, etc. help us to create our own teaching materials and at the same time remind us of the growing need for evaluation of resources.  Students are increasingly required to comprehend a topic from multiple perspectives.  It is our job as librarians to explore topics with them and enable that to happen. The books we buy, the courses we teach are increasingly multidisciplinary. The skills which the 21st Century workforce needs increasingly require collaboration and social intelligence. In our Integrated Global Studies School the IGSS  teachers are taking control of their own courses by creating their own interactive textbooks/course materials. Good gives the example of Knowmia which has thousands of video lessons from great teachers around the world which would facilitate flipping the classroom.  There is currently enough video available from everywhere, if you have the time to curate it, to flip your classroom instruction and give more individualized attention to each student. Here is Good's rich collection of curated education websites which teachers can use to create their own content.

To view a Mindomo map of all the curation tools mentioned by Robin Good: click here.

From Robin Good, who I follow on , I am now learning from Joshua Merritt, Sr. Manager of Content & Creative Strategy @BMC Software.
In Will Richardson's new book, Why School, I learned that effective  21st Century learners understand the benefits of "learning from strangers". 

Upon reflection, I also realize that the only way to keep up with what's really going on with 21st Century education is to learn from others at the pace that our students are learning from others. Which means read, read,

I enjoyed Merritt's recent blog post stating that if "curating content is easy, you're doing it wrong". 
  • Stop playing the volume game. ---put quality first
  • You need an opinion --what value can you add?
  • Dig far and wide --look for unique perspectives
  • It pays to cite your sources.
  • Treat curating like you are creating original art.
    • **Rheingold is a visiting lecturer in Stanford University‘s Department of Communication where he teaches two courses, “Digital Journalism” and “Virtual Communities and Social Media”. He is a lecturer in U.C. Berkeley‘s School of Information where he teaches “Virtual Communities and Social Media” and where he previously taught “Participatory Media/Collective Action”.

    Saturday, September 15, 2012

    A Fine Example of Curation

    Earth's History in 2 Minutes:
    When students curate the web, they can create powerful visual storytelling. It has over 100,000 views.

    YouTube description:
    A project I made for video productions class "Cutaway Productions" at my high school. I don't own the rights to the song or the pictures and I am not trying to claim them, I just did this video for fun and I spent many a hour on it so please dont sue me.

    Song: Mind Heist (yes it is from Inception)
    by: Zack Hemsey

    Monday, September 10, 2012

    TL NING: Back to School Special 2012-13

    TL NING:  For those of us who connect, teach, share, and lead in new information landscapes.
    Rocking The New Year!

    Sept 10th -- 7pm Central Time Zone

    Guests: Gwyneth Jones, Tiffany Whitehead, & Jennifer LaGarde 

    Here is the calendar for the full the dates on your calendar:
    Here's a handy resource for developing your PLN:

    Jennifer LaGarde'snew PLN Starter Kit -includes her LiveBinder -from Joyce's SLJ 7/19 blog post-a resource for educators who are ready to start building a Personal Learning Network but who just don’t know where to start.  I simply cannot say enough about how my PLN has shaped my thinking, helped me grow as an educator and, to be blunt, made me a happier person. It’s absolutely maddening to know that something has made an indelible, life changing and permanent impact on my life and not be able to say “here’s how you can have the same experience!”

    TL Virtual Cafe Webinar Series Calendar

    I hope to capture the main ideas of theTL Virtual Cafe session tonight. There will be a text chat archive on the TL Ning later which will capture comments of the participants. Visit the TL Wiki to get more information on these free webinars.

    Moderator: Gwyneth Jones (Daring Librarian): Every year is a new start.  Goals: 
    1. Celebrate reading and readers -- book pass & make a prioritized list (keep them in the library on paper --old school style; kids write post it notes; QR codes for new reviews "Find this at the library",  and Twitter sized reviews
    2. nurture and inspire new teachers-- go to them; go slowly; use supporting & supportive notes; send them emails, wikis and web pages
    3. crowd source and connect more with my community-- use blogging, wiki pages, Facebook page, LiveBinders, Google forms (tell us what you want), Twitter, Polls to take "this year's temperature"  (Poll Daddy)
    4. connect with my PLN--
    5. Improve my blog - Edublog software

      Librarian Tiff --
    Tiffany Whitehead (Mighty Little Librarian
    1. Adjusting to a new library space (middle school): big use of quotations; wordles; decorate it so that it's the best-looking room in the school; students should feel comfortable.  Use Cricut cutting machine (die-cut machine), vinyl peel back letters; use a laser level.
    2. Genre shelving: with both fiction and non-fiction; completely veered away from Dewey (more like book store layout); spine labels clearly labelled. Easy exploring for students.  Start with the fiction and keep your students in mind.  All signs are posted on Flickr so that you can use these and post them.
    3. Let your professionalism shine and dress for success. Put up your diplomas & teaching certificates. 
    4. Schoology:  learning management system --to teach digital citzenship  ; also use Common Sense Media. 
    5. Book Therapy: focus on literacy and reading.  Read more to do better book talking and make reading suggestions; make book displays. Make time to talk to kids about books.
    6. Set goals: for your interactions with students, with teachers, and for your own professional development; push the envelope with school policy such as cell phones.  

    Moderator: Jennifer LaGarde (Library Girl!):
    1. Exploring 21st Century learning - game based learning "Level Up"; 5 million students admit to playing 45 hours of video games per week.  We need more "epic wins"...students experience extreme joy with the accomplishment of learning.
    2. Staff development - Teach other teachers about game based learning with goals that align to features of good games, e.g. a clear goal, clear rules, system of feedback (using Edmodo), teachers earn badges "dude, where's my badge?" & voluntary participation. Experience the Edmodo environment from the viewpoint of a student.
    3. Face to face meetings for staff development with teachers.  This allows them to also schedule library time.  

    Sunday, September 09, 2012

    We Live in a World of Too Much Information

    What happens when Google's search results aren't enough? Or, think about this: what has happened since Google's ranking algorithm got gamed? Lots!

    If we couldn't curate by hand with Netscape Navigator in the mid-1990s, how can we do it now with hundreds of millions of websites?  The answer is actually crowd-sourcing curation. We now crowd source curation of information and then ultimately, the process will start all over again once the Google search algorithms kick in.

    Wikipedia defines curation as the sorting, categorizing, and presenting of material from multiple sources which creates a unique editorial experience for readers.

    There's a lot of grumbling out there by folks who create original content and others who don't attribute their sources to the original creators.

    Curator’s Code is an attempt to standardize “via” links and attribution from link blogs and aggregators with two new symbols:
    • ᔥ means “via”
    • ↬ means “hat tip”
    You can drag a bookmarklet to your browser when you are "grabbing information" from the Internet in order to give attribution to sources.

    The good news is that there are many curation tools available to help us track the news and current events:

    Here are a few tools I recently discovered which will be added to our Election 2012 website.

    --tracks all the news published using ~ 5,000 English-language sources and "gathers social data for each story – how many shares, likes, tweets and comments it has – at repeated intervals, building a live picture of how popular it is, right now. With this information, it calculates a social speed at which each story is travelling. The process is unique, new, and patent pending."  The NewsWhip Score shows how fast a story is spreading through Facebook and Twitter.

    BoxFish -
    TV's information search.  Search every word spoken on Television in real time--a new layer of discovery for television.  Do a keyword search and try it for current events.

    pulse - read your news anywhere, gathers your favorite sites together, transforming them into a colorful visually based mosaic. Apps available for iphone, ipad, android, and kindle.

    RawStory- a progressive news site focusing on stories often ignored by mainstream media. Draws attention to policy, politics, legal and human rights stories.

    NewsPin - pick the topics you care about and this tool finds the best articles and brings them to you so you can share them.

    Storyful - curation of the "smartest" conversations about world events by professional journalists who glean the most important news and separate it from the "noise of the real-time web".  This is a subscription service with a free trial.

    Google: Politics and Elections - (Google is trying to curate!)
    This source draws from Google news on the Presidential candidates and the issues including:

    More on Content Curation:

    5 Curation Apps and Examples With a Wow! Factor

    Alltop - the biggest aggregator and craziest curator I know.....

    Using SCREENR for screen casts

    We are always looking for ways to do simple tutorials for search, curation, creation, etc.  This appears to be the easiest one yet!  SCREENR could be a solution for using the flip the classroom model of instruction.