education & tech

mLearning, teacher, scholar, social media

Education + Tech

Education & Tech, was created to build hope that education based on social technologies, can transform the new century, and enable abundance not only spiritually but economically. Milton Ramirez, Ed.D. - @tonnet is the founder & editor. He is a teacher, tech blogger, writes on education, and hails this blog from Union, NJ. For further questions, tips or concerns please e-mail him to:miltonramirez [at] educationandtech [dot] com

Teacher + Scholar

If you are a regular to Blog Education & Tech, you shall remember that I am a blogger and I'd written a post about education almost everyday since 2003. Education & Tech provides you with education news, expert tech advice, classroom management ideas, and social media tools for educators, administrators, parents and k-12 students.

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EduDemic: Compilation of the 100 Free Online Learning Tools.

The team over EduDemic is doing a great job, considering that the site went live no many months now. Its editors are working hard to expand their services and develop other projects like Socially Learning and EduDatum, along the way.

Jeff Dunn, Melanie Yarbrough, Jason Blanchard and Andrew Marcinek are behind this useful website connecting education and social media.

We got in touch with Jane Hart's work before, but until now we haven't had the opportunity to post about it. During this week these guys posted a selection of the Emerging List of Top 100 Tools for Learning 2010 built by Jane.

The selected links are organized into categories:

» Sharing and Collaborating.
» Open Courseware Search Engines.
» Open Courseware.
» Online Academic Video Sites.
» Online Lectures.
» Online Reference Material.
» Social Media Tools.
» Wikis.
» Online Books and Texts; and,
» Professional Online Education Networks.

Pick the Best Free Online Learning Toos at your will here.

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What You Should Never Say on Facebook or Twitter.

Connect and share are two concepts widely spread on social networks. But as much they are popular, there are a handful of personal details that you should never say if you don’t want criminals to rob your identity.

You can certainly enjoy sharing photos, but you should know that sharing some sort of information puts you at risk. This post pretends to tells you what you should never say on Facebook, Twitter or any other social networking site.

Facebook handles a tremendous amount of information and online traffic. That's why ill-advised Facebook postings very common and regular among young people and students, increasingly can get your car insurance canceled for example.

As for now almost everybody knows that those drunken party photos could cost you a future job, or get you into trouble with the actual, too.

Kathy Kristof of Teaching Social Media Marketing at UCLA, lists 6 things you should never say on any social network place:

    1. Your birth date and place.
    2. Vacation plans.
    3. Home address.
    4. Confessionals. 8% of companies fired someone for “misuse” of social media. last year.
    5. Password clues.
    6. Risky bahaviors. Technology is fast evolving insurers to detect it on social networks.

Have you experienced any consequences of these misbehavior on your school or place of work?

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How to document or create a resume for informal learning? Should it be done?

There is a full range of resources to write your CV or to pursue a job. But this question makes me wonder how much of what is not academically certified can be listed on your resume.

"My growth as a learner has skyrocketed in recent years, as I became a connected learner. I believe I have learned more about teaching, learning and technology’s role in the process from self-directed, network supported interactions then I did in many of the formal educational opportunities in which I have participated. I am sure many of you feel the same way.

My children are also connected learners and participate in many opportunities outside of traditional schooling. For example my daughter participated in a writers forum, where they challenged each other in creative writing projects. They wrote, critiqued and re-wrote. She worked on theme, writing style, tense, voice, dialect, setting, etc. She is also interested in propulsion options in space and is researching spacecraft design. She is immersed in learning. My son runs a guild in World of Warcraft. He organizes a group of people, manages assets, plans strategies and often needs to assist members in getting along. He deals with personnel issues and is learning management strategies. Their school transcripts do not reflect their skills, knowledge and talents. How would my children document their learning?"

But how to include all these experiences on your resume? More of the results Beth Knittle received about this question here.

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Top 10 Web 2.0 Tools Recommended by The Journal

Which web 2.0 tools are best suited for enabling collaboration in teaching and learning?

Steve Hargadon, John Kuglin and Leslie Fisher discuss which are the three of their preference.

Hargadon speaks of blogs, social networks and synchronous live platforms.

Kuglin mentions Google Docs, SlideRocket and School Fusion.

Fisher makes her case about Twitter, TypeWith.me and Ustream.

I am surprised none of them referred to Prezi.

Links of these Web 2.0 tools are here at The Journal - Transforming Education Through Technology.

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10 Useful iPad/iPhone Apps for a Lifelong Learner

I may fall on the independent geek category but let me tell you that I don't own an iPad yet. While I read a great deal of posts, lists and recommendations for the iPad, I've found interesting the list presented by Jeff Cobb. Why? He is a person who owns an iPad, his mission is learning and he recommends out of personal experience.

For those who already have the most sold gadget in the market, please make sure you have downloaded the following apps suggested by Mission to Learn:

1. http://www.evernote.com. Free. Pro version available.
2. http://www.nibirutech.com/mobilerss-google-reader-iphone.html. Free. Pro version available for $2.99.
3. http://www.alphonsolabs.com. $3.99.
4. http://freebooksapp.com. Free.
5. http://www.amazon.com/kindleapp. Free.
6. http://www.dragonmobileapps.com. Free.
7. http://ww.tweetdeck.com/ipad | http://seesmic.com/seesmic_mobile. Free.
8. http://comoki.com/iwiki/. $2.99.
9. http://delicioussafari.com/bookmarks.php. Free.
10 Both pre-installed on the iPad. "Open Culture’s Intelligent You Tube Channels or educational Podcast Library, you now dial them up on your iPad. Free."

Remember these apps can also run on your iPhone or iPod Touch.

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Are Blacks and Hispanics Closing Their Digital Divide? No.

There is a challenging video posted by Mario Armstrong where he questions with deep fundamentals why this PEW report could mislead to the wrong conclusion up there where politicians take the decisions.

As we tweeted Armstrong's invitation to watch and comment the video , immediately I received a question by @POWERORGmath which was answered accordingly. Contrary to what Mario did, we thought it was worth a post to expand our views on the digital divide closing to Blacks and Latinos.

Statistics can be misleading if there are not error margin and delimitation of the investigation. As far as I respect PEW, I have to agree to what is said on the video by Mario Armstrong. The problem with the so called digital divide is not about consumption, to me is about access and ''creation as Mario puts it.

But what kind of access? The possibility to send/receive messages as the report pretends to make you believe? No. Access in terms of information. Hispanics may be having more access data, but is the quality of data they access what matters. Are they reading on their mobiles? Are they doing some feed tracking? Are they learning new things beyond handling keyboard cellphone?

As I said in my first answer to @POWERORGmath, while this society continues to enable poor people, not matter they are buying more expensive smartphones, the digital divide not only is not closing, to me is getting deeper because they are wasting money, but there is not inversion on their intellect.

Throwing the digital divide wall, according to this report means learning to use a device to text messaging and watch videos online. Even though smartphones are more about data that communication, this perception PEW is giving to decision makers, is wrong. They might have the impression the problem is getting solved and nothing needs to be done about. Terrible mistake.

The breach of digital access is not only about mobile devices y has to do with other devices, too.

Again, if we need everyone sufficient on the digital literacy, we need to change the variables of definition that sustains this statistics, otherwise we wouldn't be closing the gap but as I said it before, it may be getting deeper because of a misleading conclusion.

Wish Hispanics pay more attention to what researchers are saying about them.

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The Meaning And Measurability of Digital Participation.

Steve Mackenzie was present during a seminar at Birmingham University,United Kingdom, on Monday 19th July. The objectives of this seminar were: a)To start up a continuing dialogue between researchers, activists and policy-makers about issues of research and measurement, and b)To identify key concerns about the meaning and value of digital participation.

These are the thoughts Mackenzie posted about why digital participation is important:

    It depends on who is answering the question, but the bottom line to me is that participating online promotes social learning and learning in all its forms is a strong foundation for progress within a society. There was a strong feeling i got from our discussions on the day that one of the strong motivations was to save the government money by moving services online - which is all fine, dandy, proper and good but whoever is driving this vision must be driving with a passionate belief that being a digital citizen allows the individual and society to develop and improve both from a social and economic point of view.

    If we leave the top end knowledge workers to one side, to encourage full digital citizenship there needs to be a social, life benefit to participating which will attract interest from all levels of the community. To the individual if their are benefits to be gained economically or in terms of convenience then this will indeed be one strand of the motivation. If digital participation can have a link to offline activities that foster community and social activities that would be another important and worthwhile strand. Participating online, mixing and socializing will inevitable lead to informal social learning, but there are also fantastic opportunities to support people online who are looking to learn specific skills and competencies.

    So underpinning effective and inclusive digital participation will be education and especially education in the new media literacies that are required to function effectively in a wide range of activities on the web. This may require a change in teaching mentality that embraces new media technology in schools. The video below will set the scene for creating digital citizens for the 21st century.

Read more at Learnadoodledastic

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Where is the value of afterschool programs?

There is some criticism about after school programs. For some these are a waste of time and money. It is not so for private organization ACE Mentor Program of America, the Construction Industry Round Table, the Pennsylvania Area Council of Boys and Girls Clubs, CentroNia and the Verizon Foundation.

Today on Senate U.S. briefing these organizations presented progress of the work they are doing to promote and provide afterschool activities in their communities.

People of the NSBA(National School Boards Association) were also present and they wrote a wrap up of the state of the afterschool programs in the United States:

    More than 15 million children are left unsupervised at the close of the school day, yet more than 18.5 million parents report they would make their children participate in afterschool programs if they were “affordable and available”. Currently only 11 percent of the cost of afterschool programs are being funded by the federal government, this according to the bipartisan senate afterschool caucus, which naturally begs the question, should this number be increased?

Of course, we think it needs to be increased. Many kids will benefit of help and tutoring in the afterschool sessions, but working parents can comply with their responsibility, given they know their kids are not home alone or on the streets.

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