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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Fair Use Call for Huffington Post. When in Doubt, Ask for Permission

I’ve always found the model The Huffington Post was using kind of interesting, but as Duncan Riley, we also presumed that it was done with permission; we now run a small about of content here at Education & Tech on the similar basis, although not always with permission from the authors upfront.

Both Wired and The Inquisitr are running the new. Since we are being printing extracts, lately, we would like to ask our readers, what is their take on this syndication practice long being used by The Huffington Post.

Riley explains that this trick might be considered as Fair Use:

"Running 2-3 paragraphs of a longer post with a link back may constitute fair use, but not adding to the content and running it whole (even if only part of the post) starts to get fishy on the fair use part, when considering that fair use in this context would normally be considered when quoting in the context of unique content."

Desperately waiting for your replies. Thanks.

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Education: The World Indigenous Peoples' Conference

Last week 3000 delegates from around the world shared their experiences at The World Indigenous Peoples' Conference: Education at Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne. There has been little coverage by the mainstream media and surprisingly little activity in the global blogosphere that I’m aware of.

Carbon Media produced excellent video for National Indigenous TV (NITV) that is available at Black Tracks. Their 5 episodes include interviews with leading keynote speakers and conference delegates.

A sample of the video interviews

Read whole article here.

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Plagiarism: Preventing Bad Use of your Blog Contents

We have put out our 2 cents before on plagiarism. Yesterday while we checked our Google Reader subscriptions, we came across to Richard Byrne's experiences about someone stealing contents of his blog.

Some still are holding up that Blogging as a Method of Communication May be Over, but Byrne goes forward and mentions the three mos popular platforms to create blogs "If you're a teacher just beginning to explore the use of technology in the classroom". He also asserts why he decided to stay with Blogger Platform.

Blogger is well known to operate and allow lots of splogs maintained thanks to services like this one. But we have to protect ourselves of been plagiarized. The question, is how to detect plagiarism? Learning from Free Tech for Teachers, we now know of how to detect and prevent this problem, unfortunately on the rise.

We can add to the list: Find the e-mail of people who plagiarized your content. As for what we would like to use (not frequently but we do sometimes run a quick monitoring), these are our 5 cents: Duplicate Post Checker, PlagiarsimDetect and Copyscape.

We’ll be happy to give you any legal approvals you need whether you like our content. But I want you to steal my content.(in a good way) In fact, all our contents are available via Creative Commons license so you can use it wherever and whenever. Of course, we'd like a credit, yes, but it's not a demand.

I am sorry, this post ended full of links. This is what to do when someone steals your content, please don't get me wrong with the paragraph before.

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Education Today 12/17/2008

Hard Work And Technology Improve Achievement

They [kids] know now that when they say something it will be welcomed and discussed - the relationships in the classroom are fantastic.

Social Media vs. Knowledge Management

Taking the best of Social Media, Knowledge Management, eLearning, User Assistance (and others) and combining them together gives us Enterprise 2.0 solution

UK survey shows e-learning's the downturn winner

Less surprising is the increased interest in e-learning, blended learning and mobile learning, which is already reflected in high levels of activity among developers.

A balance between teaching skills and content

Memorisation of facts without the skills is obviously a waste of time, and I understand that you need the skills to locate, manage and synthesize the freely available information to create knowledge, but we still need a knowledge of some content, surely, otherwise the skills are free floating and without context.

Seven brilliant things teachers do with technology

Things i see teachers do that just make me marvel and feel proud to be a part of the profession.

The rest of my favorite links are here.

First Reactions on Barack Obama's Post for Education Secretary

We've been following the selection of Secretary of Education during these weeks and today the outcomes are visible for all to see. Traditional media is writing a great deal of stuff on the new nominee.

We were expecting president-elect picks to this position a career educator but it seem we got all wrong. In place, he selected a buddy of yours and an attorney as professional. While results are expected to come after Senate confirms Arne Duncan, NPR(National Public Radio)says his nomination "is expected to be well-received among many educators as well as the 1.4 million-strong American Federation of Teachers."

We are fond of AllThingsConsidered and today, they aired an interview of Chester Fin, Jr.,who offers his insights on the appointment. He said the post of Mr. Duncan is "a little bit mistified" and talking about Duncan's Chicago Schools' experience he added, results are "modest but positive". The problem is Mr. Duncan doesn't have a lot of 'Washington experience"

Details of what other people is writing on Obama's pick for Secretary of Education, are here. It's completely visible that not all are welcoming Obama's basketball buddy from Hyde Park:

Steve Diamond is a law professor and this is what he thinks of his colleague Arne Duncan:

Education Secretary-nominee Arne Duncan is seen by most as far more interested in privatization of schools than tackling the deep set social and economic context which creates the "achievement gap" in America.

David Boaz of Cato @ Liberty states that he doesn't know much about Arne Duncan but stress this:

In seven years running the Chicago public schools, this longtime friend of Obama was apparently not able to produce a single public school that Obama considered good enough for his own children.

Sarah Karp looks into Duncan's track record and among other thinks she points out:

...Little has been done to shed light on district spending decisions, particularly construction and renovation budgets. CPS continues to gather input on capital needs through public meetings, but it has not laid out a clear spending strategy nor has it ranked renovation priorities from school to school. Community groups have long demanded, in vain, for just such a plan.

Still one of the most respected journalist joins in and drops a bomb to Democrats. "You may have won the election, but you're getting CREAMED in the transition", writes G. Palast, and he explains why is so horrified of:

The ill philosophy behind the Bush-brand education theories Duncan promotes, "Teach-to-the-Test," forces teachers to limit classroom time to pounding in rote low-end skills, easily measured on standardized tests. The transparent purpose is to create a future class of worker-drones. Add in some computer training and - voila! - millions of lower-income kids are trained on the cheap to function, not think.

We haven't see much of these critics on the other nomination, but this one, where -as Palast put it, in no other cabinet department is the lack of expertise, lack of accomplishment, lack of a degree in the field found acceptable but in Education.

Is Mr. Duncan a truly reformer? Is Arne Duncan, the candidate whose selection would bring about real change or is he a bad decision?


Trutout needs your help. Check as well, its Obama's Betrayal of Public Education? Arne Duncan and the Corporate Model of Schooling

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Teachers: Linux Is a Free Operating System in Both Cost and License

This post comes from a thread about a Middle School teacher who cared about her students. She was making her case on what she thought it was something illegal.

Ken Starks of HeliOS Solutions, who advocate, support and use Free Open Source Software and Linux in particular, follows up on this matter:

"...The consensus began building about 24 hours ago when I published a blog strongly chastising a teacher who emailed me. She made, what I considered to be, some amazingly ignorant statements, statements that I felt attacked the very core reason for my existence. It made me much angrier than it should have.

I'm human, so sue me.

No wait, scratch that last line...don't sue me. It is being discussed.

Her tone didn't help her case much. She insinuated that I may had done something illegal. We build/refurbish computers for kids who are financially disadvantaged. We also build and present computers to kids of high achievement. To even hint that I am involved in anything that approaches breaking the law is not only silly, it evokes emotion better left un-evoked. I've worked for years to bring the level of success, however limited, we have now. The last thing I need is to lose it all for something silly.

So instead of crafting a measured, count-for-count personal response, I chose to share her obvious ignorance with members of the Linux Community. It was meant to illustrate the maddening ignorance and bias a Linux Advocate faces in a Microsoft Windows world. It was also meant to digitally spank the hand of the offender. It was a good direction to go I thought."

Read whole article here, and make your very own conclusions.

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Helping Digital Natives Not to Fall into Captivity

Empowering your students, is the right thing to do, was the title of a post we wrote last week in support of a group of 9th grade students in Georgia. They've stepped forward to keep working with media and also designing videos where they show what is Lively like. They have created a Facebook group that you can join to promote Keeping Lively Alive.

To understand better what these students are doing, we want you to read and article appeared today, written by Evgeny Mozorov of the Herald Tribune. The author refers to a recent three-year study by the MacArthur foundation. This study found that the Internet helps young people to become "competent citizens in the digital age", which in turn, techie junks are labeled as Digital Natives.

American and Western Europe experiences don't always work elsewhere. What's going on in other societies?, says the article.

Are they [Digital Natives] the "digital renegades," ready to leverage the power of social networking and text messaging to topple their undemocratic governments? Or are they "digital captives," whose political and social dissent has been significantly neutered by the Internet, turning them into happy consumers of Hollywood's digital marginalia?

The digital natives were expected to be in the avant guard of this movement; Facebook was supposed to make the Little Red Book irrelevant...To the dismay of most policymakers and technology enthusiasts, this has not happened...

Mozorov's post is about politics, but we can extrapolate it to what these students are doing at Digiteen Dream Team. They've mastered skills to be present in the internet, dissent and make activism a tool, so they are able to bring Google to its knees, fighting their Lively petition.

We are not so sure they can get Google to change their decision. The company may have good reasons to shut down Lively. What we are completely sure is, these teens are changing the way students can make themselves heard. Use of classroom technologies bring new dimensions to the administration of schools and teacher's ethics. Don't you think?

Again, if you are for educational reform and empowering students go over Livelyzens, to see what students can do with their Lively citizen project.

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What to Do About Rising Costs of College Education

In the U.S., students who can not afford the cost of college and the accompanying expenses, they need to take out loans and/or seek employment. Federal loans bear low interest rates and payable only after the student graduates. There also grants like scholarships and private loans to augment the federal loans to cover whatever else might be needed by the school.

But things have changed lately, in the middle of this economic turmoil students at Higher Education are faced to get the money (some colleges are now costing over $50,000 per year) because their parents can afford it anymore, nor in the private colleges, neither in the community ones. Morgages are not being paid back and there is not credit offered by banks.

What college students can do to do about it?

The following are the recommendations posted on CampusGrotto, a news site that covers a wide range of College related topics:

"While this problem is pretty much out of the students’ hands, students can keep the price tag of college down by attending an in-state school, which are on average about $10,000 cheaper. Many students across the country are transferring away from expensive colleges, to attend more affordable colleges. Its almost as if the current state in the price of higher education is forcing many to go to a local community college first, not only to save money, but because that is all they can afford."

With the extreme price of tuition, it may be time we start question the non-profit status of many universities. Colleges should use up more of their endowments to help keep the cost for students at a reasonable price. Increasing the availability of student loans -if they happen to get them, is not the answer to this situation.

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Business and Education: Future of Education Industry

Last week, we attended a eduConference at the Education Revolution and it was a great experience. Joseph of Teach Street Blog, wrote a note on the event and gave us a link back, that we want to show appreciation. The discussions focused on what members of education industry can do the help the progression of education and the tools that are out there to enable us to do so.

The education presentations tried to cover The Future of education and were referred to: 5 Free Weeb Tools for Collaborative Learning presented by Koichi C., Biggest Success Stories of the Web 2.O by Jon Bischke and Multimedia and Teaching presented by Alan Cohen.

Out there, in a field different than educators are familiar with, there are people who often think that business and academics can't walk together, and yes, there definitely is a big divide between schools and corporations. But Ramin, of SuperCool Blog think that's precisely part of the problem - because if entrepreneurs and educators unite, that's a very mighty force for the good of the world.

The eduFire conference is a good example to show that business and education should go hand in hand. Let's face it, that's one of the main purposes of school. To prepare you for making a living later on. What school does at this moment, is "churning out factory workers", in a time when even demand for these workers is diminishing so rapidly.

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Teach for America Is the Raw Path Darling-Hammond Still Has to Walk

Recently we spoke on this post, about the pending decision of the President-elect of who will be nominated to Secretary of Education and how it was important to advocate for an educator and not any corporate manager involved with education.

The New York Times, today continues its scrutiny of the possible names to be picked by President Obama. This time Sad Dillon, stresses on the uncertainty of such nominations, considering none of the two national teachers unions have endorsed a candidate yet.

In our first cited post, we talked about Linda-Darling Hammond's candidacy, but it seems, many are looking into the "controversial figure partly because of her longtime criticism of Teach for America and what we already told in that post, "Dr. Darling-Hammond, is influential, clever and an enemy of genuine reform."

From the Uncertainty on Obama Education Plans:

Will [Mr Obama] side with those who want to abolish teacher tenure and otherwise curb the power of teachers’ unions? Or with those who want to rewrite the main federal law on elementary and secondary education, the No Child Left Behind Act, and who say the best strategy is to help teachers become more qualified?

We still don't think should favor nobody that isn't working in the classroom. Though, Randi Weingarten, the American Federation of Teachers' president, has stepped up and said that Arne Duncan, "actually reaches out and tries to do things in a collaborative way.” Is this meant that this organization is dropping endorsement of Mrs. Hammond?


Weingarten wasn't so wrong, today (12/15/08)it has been learned through the New York Times that President-elect Obama, will make the official announcement tomorrow appointing for Education Secretary, the superintendent of schools in Chicago: Arne Dunkan.

Chester Finn, president of Thomas B. Fordham Institute, a Washington, D.C.-based, education think tank, offers his insight on the appointment. Listen podcast at NPR.

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