Teague's Tech Treks

Learning Technology and other Tech Observations by Dr. Helen Teague

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Weekend Ed. Quote~November 30

“If you put a computer in front of children and remove all other adult restrictions, they will self-organize around it, like bees around a flower.” ~Sugata Mitra from this post

book and computer

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More Ed. Quotes

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Innovative Finnish-American research collaboration

http://www.innovationsforlearning.net/In early 2013 a collaboration between Finnish and American education researchers took a step forward as Science Across Virtual Institutes was formally launched. Called SAVI for short, Science Across Virtual Institutes brings together sixteen research groups. Each of the eight groups from Finland partners with a group from the US forming eight teams.

“In SAVI education experts from Finland and the USA work together with the aim of improving student engagement in STEM,” summarizes professor Jari Multisilta, who heads the Finnish side of the collaboration. The SAVI program is funded by both Finnish and American sources: the Academy of Finland, Tekes (the Finnish Agency for Technology and Innovation) and the US National Science Foundation. Multisilta believes that motivation for both researchers and supporters stems from a general concern: “Policy makers are becoming more and more aware of the challenges linked to the low popularity of STEM subjects. In the future we will need an increasing number of skilled STEM experts to maintain and develop our societies and economies sustainably.”

The SAVI research teams specialize in different topics of learning innovations in science and mathematics:

  • WEPS Advancing an Online Project in the Assessment and Effective Teaching of Calculus
  • eTEXTBOOK Dynamic Digital Text: An Innovation in STEM Education Finland
  • EAGER Engagement in STEM learning and careers through the use of innovative learning activities
  • VIP Video Inquitry Project. STEM Learning and Teaching with Mobile Video Inquiries and Communities
  • FUN: Finland – US Network for the Study of Engagement and Learning in Games
  • GROMINDS Graphogame and MindStars Books: Global Cyber Tools for Improving Young Learner’s Reading Comprehension, Scientific Discourse and STEM Learning
  • PDE Studying & Supporting Productive Disciplinary Engagement In Demanding Stem Learning Environments Across Cultures And Settings
  • UNCODE – Uncovering Hidden Cognitive Demands on Global Learners

To continue reading this article by Maija Pollari or to learn more about this exciting opportunity click here

http://www.luma.fi/news/2534/a-finnish-american-research-collaboration-sparkles-with-learning-innovations

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Thanksgiving Chalkboard Printables

Click the picture or the link to see wonderful Thanksgiving printables and also at this link to use in your classroom or with family.

thanksgiving printables from net of posies

Happy Thanksgiving!

Source: Nest of Posies

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Thanksgiving Crafts~Making a Silhouette Picture

turkey silhouette

These are the two days in the classroom that offer the most promise and patience. If your school has decided to meet during Monday and Tuesday of Thanksgiving week, you have an interesting challenge opportunity. It is difficult to advance curriculum when many students have already been taken out of class by family already in Thanksgiving mode. But just popping in a video or having a “make-up” day seems like a cop-out.

How about an interactive technology-rich silhouette picture-creating activity? Daniele, at the Domestic Serenity blog has the perfect silhouette picture creating idea!

 

The materials needed for silhouettes are probably already in your supply cabinets.

Camera (can use iPhone), photo paper, printer
scissors
chalk (pastel colors are ideal)
glue or mod podge
card stock

Read the easy and illustrated instructions, and plenty of free printables at the Domestic Serenity blog (scroll down the page a bit)

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

give thanks

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Participating in an Online Community~Week 6 Post 1

Disclaimer: This post is part of course requirements following this assignment: Extend your identity in the direction of your career path and participate in a new online community. Interact online using your projected identity for at least six weeks. Think deeply about identity and learning and blog twice a week about your experience. Take time to analyze the meaning, power, and constraints of the community on your learning.

Week 6, Post 1

I have gravitated back to the Sci-Fi and Fantasy book group on Goodreads and away from the other group I joined. There was not enough engagement at the second group. Posts were mostly invitations to upcoming events. I like the robust dialogue in my Goodreads group. Perhaps I am experiencing the sense of communication described by José van Dijck in The culture of connectivity : a critical history of social media:

José van Dijck

Sherry Turkle writes that “virtual places offer connection with uncertain claims to commitment” (page 153). I disagree. In my online group, I find a constancy of commitment, exploration, discussion, and communication. On average, the group generates over 400 posts per week. One post invites us to collectively read the book of the month collectively selected for December.

My online group chose The Long Earth as its December book choice. Its authors are Terry Pratchett and Stephen Baxter and it received the Goodreads’ Choice Award in the category Science Fiction in 2012.

The Long Earth plots involves multiple Earths– parallel worlds– which people traverse by a simple piece of hardware that can be manufactured from Radio Shack parts and a potato. It reminds me a little bit of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. The main character, Joshua, realizes he does not need the interplanetary device to travel between the multiple planes. Joshua and a Tibetan motorcycle repairman now reincarnated as a super-computer periodically staying in a coke machine set off on a journey to exploration the parallel worlds.

From other reviews, Schrödinger’s cat, quantum physics and universal branching theory are intertwined with the British humor of Terry Pratchett and the scientific mind of Stephen Baxter.

I’ve been warned about the ending when one group member wrote, “A story without an ending is an elaborate typing exercise.” I decide to read ahead a bit and start the book a bit early.

But the writing is elegantly hypnotic:

“All of the Long Earth, Earths, untold Earths. More Earths than could be counted, some said. And all you had to do was walk sideways into them, one after the next, an unending chain.” The Long Earth, page 3.

The description of walking sideways, traversing multiple communities, multiple assignments and multiple expectations surely describes my experience during this first semester of doctoral work. Maybe that is why I am drawn to this story.

Sources:

Dijck, José van (2013). The Culture of Connectivity : A Critical History of Social Media. Oxford University Press. Link

Pratchett, T and Baxter, S. (2012). The Long Earth. Harper Collins. Link

Turkle, Sherry (2012). Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other. Basic Books; First Trade Paper Edition edition. Link

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My Favorite Pin~100 Ways to Say the word Said

100 Ways to Say “Said” originally seen on Liz Rigby’s Research board, (click the picture to see the full list)

ways to say the word said

 

 

 

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Highlights in the U.S. Chronology of Aging Policy Events

agingpolicy

This post is part of course requirements for Dr. Farzin Madjidi, EDLT724.20, Ethics and Personal Leadership.

1920: U.S. Civil Service Retirement Act provided a retirement system for many government employees

1935: U.S. Social Security Act provided elderly assistance and elderly survivors’ insurance

1950: U.S. President Harry Truman initiated the 1st National Conference on Aging 

1950: The National Council on Aging founded

1952: U.S. government first appropriates federal funds for social service programs for older persons under the Social Security Act

1954: Meals on Wheels, a home-delivered meal program for seniors begins in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

1965: U.S. Older American Act (Public Law 89-73) signed into law on July 14. It established the Administration on Aging within the Department of Health, Education and Welfare. Medicare, Title XVIII, Medicaid Title XIX established

1972: Older American’s Act created a national nutrition program for older persons.

1973 Older American’s Act establishes the Area Agencies on Aging

1974: Title XX of the Social Security Act authorized grants to states for social services including protective services, homemaker services, transportation services, adult day care service, training for employment, information and referral, nutrition assistance, and health support.

1974: Housing and Community Development Act provided for low-income housing for older persons pursuant to the Housing Act of 1937

1981: American Federation for Aging Research founded by Dr. Irving Wright to fund research focused on aging processes and age-related diseases

1984: National Institute on Aging created to conduct research and training related to the Aging process, the diseases, and challenges of an aging population

1987: Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act provides for nursing home reform in the areas of nurse aide training, survey, and certification procedures, and pre-admission screening.

1987: Reauthorization of the Older American’s Act added six service sectors:

In-home services for the frail elderly
Long-term care ombudsman
Assistance for special needs
Home education and promotion
Prevention of elder abuse, neglect, and exploitation, outreach activities

1990: Americans with Disabilities Act extended protection from discrimination in employment and public accommodations to persons with disabilities. Reauthorization of the National Affordable Housing Act HUD Section 202 Elderly Housing program.

1990: Age Discrimination in Employment Act made it illegal for companies to discriminate against older workers in employee benefits

1992: Commissioner on Aging position elevated to Assistant Secretary for Aging

•• To serve as the effective and visible advocate for older individuals within the Department of Health and Human Services and across the federal government
•• To collect and disseminate information related to problems of the aged and aging
•• To gather statistics in the field of aging that other federal agencies are not collecting
•• To stimulate more effective use of existing resources and available services for the aged and aging, and to coordinate federal programs and activities
•• To carry on a continuing evaluation of the programs and activities related to the objectives of the OAA, with particular attention to the impact of Medicare, Medicaid, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, and the National Housing Act relating to standards for licensing nursing homes and other facilities providing care for vulnerable individuals
•• To provide information and assistance to private organizations for the establishment and operation by them of programs and activities related to the OAA
•• To strengthen the involvement of the Administration on Aging in the development of policy alternatives in long-term care by participating in all departmental and interdepartmental activities concerning development of long-term-care health services, review all departmental regulations regarding community-based long-term care, and provide a leadership role for AoA, state, and area agencies in development and implementation of community-based long-term care.
Source

1993: Dr. Fernando M. Torres-Gil becomes the 1st Assistant Secretary for Aging in the Department of Health and Humans Services

1997: Dr. Jeanette Takamura becomes the 2nd Assistant Secretary for Aging in the Department of Health and Humans Services

1999: International Year of Older Persons: A Society for all Ages

1999: Olmstead Decision of the US Supreme Court regarding ADA and community-based care

2000: Older American’s Act reauthorized to establish The National Care Givers’ Support Initiative

2001: Josefina G. Carbonell becomes the 3rd Assistant Secretary for Aging in the Department of Health and Humans Services

2006: Kathy Greenlee becomes the 4th Assistant Secretary for Aging in the Department of Health and Humans Services

2006: Older American’s Act reauthorized under the Senior Independence Act of 2006

2009: The Elder Justice Act of 2009 becomes part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, or “the Health Reform Act”

2012: Administration on Aging (AoA), reorganized as a division within the Administration for Community Living . Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) first to introduce the bill for reorganization

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For more information, click on these links:

ElderCare Locator: http://www.eldercare.gov/Eldercare.NET/Public/Index.aspx

Center for Advancing Health: http://www.cfah.org/blog/ 

John A. Hartford Foundation: http://www.jhartfound.org/  

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Best Google Tip of the Week~How to Unsend a Gmail Email

By Brett Sparrgrove, via Lisa Monthie

Trust me, I know the feeling… you just sent an email and realized that you:

     a) Sent it to the wrong person
     b) Noticed that it had typos or incorrect information a split second after hitting send
     c) Shouldn’t have sent at all (bonus tip: don’t email when angry)
     d) All of the above
You can avoid much of this potential anguish if you turn on the undo send function in mail.  To turn on undo send, start by heading over to mail settings.
Once you are in the settings part of the mail world, head on over to Labs (the slightly experimental “holding bin” for some of mail’s best features).
You should spend some time later looking at the good stuff in Labs, but for now scroll down (or search) for and enable the Undo Send function.
Don’t forget to click the Save button (ironically, since Google is so good at auto-saving for us)
You’ll be taken back to your inbox but you are not quite finshed just yet.  Head back to the settings and scroll down a bit on the General page (which is the page to which you will be taken upon clicking on settings).  You should see the Undo Send: options.  Make sure that you have the Enable Undo Send option checked and select your cancellation period (5-30 seconds).  It is during this cancellation period that you can prevent your email from being sent.  It’s not a huge amount of time but it might be enough to spare your reputation.  Scroll to the bottom of the page and hit Save.

So, you are all set up… how does it all work?
Go ahead and compose and send your email just like you normally do.

Now, pay attention, because the clock on your undo is ticking.  You will notice after you send your email you will get a message that appears at the top of your inbox that confirms that your message has been sent (note: it actually has not been sent… It won’t really be sent until the cancellation period has elapsed).  Your keen eye may spot the Undo button next to that message.  Click that Undo button and your message will not be sent.

Once the cancellation period passes, the Undo button will disappear and your message will actually be sent (bye-bye).
So, the Undo Send function does have its limitations but it’s probably better than nothing.
Enjoy.

Brett Sparrgrove, via Lisa Monthie

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The Gettysburg Address as a PPT

Today is the 150th anniversary of the Gettysburg Address by Abraham Lincoln.

In 2000, Peter Norvig, the current director of research at Google, created a PowerPoint presentation rendered from the Gettysburg Address. Click on the picture below to see the original ppt which Norvig created.

the Gettysburg Address

For more information on Norvig’s creative process, click here and for more information on the Gettysburg Address, click here

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A Mouse Memorial

 

Happy Birthday computer mouseWith the busy, pre-holiday shopping of your weekend, you may have missed the birthday yesterday of the computer mouse.

On November 18, 1970, Douglas Engelbart received a patent for the first computer mouse, while working at the Stanford Research Institute (SRI). Having first conceptualized the idea in the decade of the 1960s, he wanted to develop easy, intuitive ways for people to interact with technology.

Garrison Keillor, quotes Englebart as saying, in “We had a big heavy tracking ball, it was like a cannonball,” he said in a 2001 BBC interview. “We had several gadgets that ended up with pivots you could move around. We had a light panel you had to hold up right next to the screen so the computer could see it. And a joystick that you wiggle around to try to steer things.” Engelbart first demonstrated his “X-Y Position Indicator for a Display System” in 1968. It was a wooden shell over two metal wheels, and his team had been informally calling the small, boxy device a “mouse” in the lab, because the cord resembled a mouse’s tail.

Garrison Keillor, writes in The Writer’s Almanac that “Englebart never received any royalties, and SRI ended up licensing the mouse to Apple for a mere $40,000. He was disappointed, but not because he lost out on the money. ‘It’s strange because I’ve had my eye set on something way beyond that. It’s sort of a disappointment that the world and I haven’t yet got further,’ he said in 2001.”

Today, raise your mouse in Englebart’s honor!

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Picture Source

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