education & tech

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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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Education & Tech: News for Educators 09/11/2010

8 Awesome Tools to Quickly Take Notes and Annotate Webpage.
This article lists eight such note taking and web page annotation tools to help you in capturing and organizing information productively. Check them out.

“Twitter track on steroids” announced by TweetMeme founder.
It is in final stages of development, and will be available to developers in the next month. Twitter worked with Datasift on its development and it sounds exciting.

Internet Killed Blockbuster. Who’s Next?
Overwhelmed by debt and losses amounting to over $1 billion since 2008, the video rental chain is yet another of the world’s most famous names to join the long list of once successful companies that have not been able to adapt their business to the radical changes in the market introduced by the Internet

Plixi: Photo Sharing for Twitter and Facebook.
Allows users to instantly share their photos to popular social networks through mobile devices and on the web.

The rest of my favorite links are here.

Four Ways To Maximize Your Tech Resources In The Classroom

One of the primary jobs of educators is to develop teaching techniques that shape students in ways that translate well into the future job market. One of the best ways to accomplish this goal is to introduce current and cutting-edge technology into the classroom whenever it is appropriate to do so. Students can use this knowledge base to enhance their future careers.

Determining the best way to make use of technology in the classroom can be a challenge. Financial limitations, time restrictions, and practical concerns can limit potential positive effects. Here are four guidelines for maximizing your technology resources:

1. Don’t fall for gimmicks.

Technology companies are always on the looking for ways to break into the education market. While their offers of reduced-price tech toys and services might be just the thing your classroom needs, they can also be a huge waste of resources. In other words, if you don’t have a clear idea of how students will be using their new iPad in the classroom, it’s probably not worth the extra cost to write it into the lesson plans.

2. Stay current.

Nothing changes quite as quickly as technology. What was in favor six months ago might be passé with younger students. Further, some companies will sell unsuspecting teachers tech-based teaching aids and programs that are outdated. Staying current will help you avoid investing your resources in second rate, passé, or downright archaic products.

3. Foster creativity, not dependency.

Technology simplifies our lives. In doing so, however, it can create an environment that encourages minimal effort and creativity. Don’t be afraid to ask students to create a presentation using something other than PowerPoint. They will be forced to think outside the box, and you won’t have to see the same slide template recycled thirty times over.

4. Avoid "busywork".

Every assignment should have a clear, designated goal. Assigning a project using a new piece of equipment simply because you have that resource at your disposal wastes student effort. Make it a point to showcase the real-world applications of technology. From an education perspective, technology is only as valuable as it is functional.

This is a guest post by Alexis Bonari. She is a freelance writer and blog junkie. She is currently a resident blogger at First in Education and performs research surrounding online degrees. In her spare time, she enjoys square-foot gardening, swimming, and avoiding her laptop.

Twitter as a Human Laboratory

Photo thanks to user '~Ilse' on Flickr

Sylvia Martinez says it all:

I’m thinking about Twitter as a human laboratory — as a metaphor for learning. Twitter is what it is. How people react to it is a mirror of how they manage their own experience and their own needs.

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Understanding What the Act of Writing Really Is Among Students

Beyond School

Institutional schooling has perverted the understanding of far too many students of what the act of writing is — and the word “Act” is key: Writing is performance. This makes writers performers.

Performers know they have an unspoken but powerful contract with their audience: I must respect the time you’ve given to my performance. If they break this contract, the audience has ways of letting them know: no return visit. Boos. Bad reviews. Tomatoes flung at the time-waster on the stage

For more of the thought provoking article written by Clay Burell click here.

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Technology Tools for the New School Year

Photo credit: 'zappowbang' on FlickrThere is nothing as important as technology today, and if you don't make use of it to complement your education, you are missing out big time. There is a plethora of options to choose from, so much so that you feel like buying every new gadget that is invented and downloading every new application that is written. However, technology is only as good as the way you use it, so invest in gizmos and applications that will come in handy for the new school year. I am sure you already have your own notebook computer (or netbook) and a smartphone, so I’m going to focus on a few applications that can be downloaded from the Internet and which you can use on a regular basis for free (within a certain storage limit. Here they are, a few tools that could come in handy as you go back to school this year:

  • Dropbox: If you keep toting around a pen drive or a portable hard disk wherever you go, or if you cannot leave town without your notebook because all your files are on it and you cannot get any work done without them, then this is the perfect application for you. It is an online file storage utility that you can download for free from the Internet and install on your system. All you need to do then is to store your files in folders inside the Dropbox folder, and every time you are connected to the Internet, your files are synchronized and stored online. If you are using a friend's computer or one at a public facility, just install Dropbox onto the system, log in with your username and password, and download all your files or just the ones you need to work on currently. Dropbox makes it easy for you to forget about your files, because you can access them no matter where you are.
  • It is the perfect tool for collaborating on word documents with your classmates and colleagues – they can watch changes being made in real time, they can make changes if they are allowed to by the owner of the document, and it is easy to make remarks or comments as the text is being modified. Use this to work on MS Word files, PDF documents, and even HTML pages.
  • Panda Cloud Antivirus: It is the first antivirus software available from the cloud, and if you are like me and have had horrible experiences with the much-touted antivirus packages from Norton and the other big guns, you are bound to make the switch in a trice. The problem with some security suites is that they literally take over your hard disk and permeate to almost every nook and corner of it; so even if you uninstall them, stray files remain and corrupt other antivirus installations and even your browser configurations at times. With your antivirus package on the cloud, your hard disk is left free of clutter; with Panda, you are protected even if you are offline.
So check out these great tools today, and enjoy the convenience they add to your academic efforts.

This guest post is contributed by Debbie Owen, she writes on the topic of online doctoral degree programs. She welcomes your comments at her email id:

Education & Tech News for Educators 09/06/2010

Does a text box limits your creativity? You can compose a long text with photos an videos you want to share and paste the URL of your post to the text box.

A new technological “culture of light” will transfer both visual perception and communication. - Laszlo Moholy-Nagy

Make your note, save it and share it with friends. The created pages contain only what you have typed. There are no irrelevant elements. Only text and media content. And this is just a small part of what you can do!

allows developers to embed videos, images and rich media from 111 services through one API. Visit the documentation to learn more.

Tripline is a way for you to tell a story by putting places on a map. It player gives you an animated line moving across the map with a soundtrack.

The rest of my favorite links are here.

A Modeling Method to Improve Behaviour in the Classroom

Management of classroom is by far the most intricate activity when you are a teacher in the lower levels. By experience I can say that the one thing you need is knowledge and patience. But what do you do when when you have a group of students that either disrupt your class or simply don't want to do their work?

Some colleagues will call for motivation. We call it an strategy. Michael Linsin comes with an interesting proposal we think is helpful and might solve a problem for many of us, k-12 teachers. This modeling method receives the name of Power of One

How the Power of One works.

After giving directions for whatever it is you want your students to do, follow these five steps, writes Linsin at Smart Classroom Management:

    1. Pause. A pause creates anticipation, drawing more attention to you and interest in whatever comes next.

    2. Choose one. Choose one student to do whatever it is you want your entire class to do. Who you choose only matters in that it must be someone you’re confident will perform the task correctly.

    3. Student performs. Don’t say a word while the chosen student is performing the task. When the student finishes, be sure to offer a small gesture of praise.

    4. Allow for questions. Allow questions if there is any. Then ask if there is anyone who, for any reason, will not be able to perform the task as modeled.

    5. The rest of the class performs. Ask for repetition. The rest of your students will then perform the task exactly how you want.

This strategy well may be called micromanaging for the time and space it takes, but definitely you will exercise control on a determined student and the task can be performed by any ordinary student, so the rest of the class would love to reflect on him.

What kind of resource of strategy are you going to use this new year with your disruptive students?

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