Words of Wisdom from Judy B.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Thing #23 Yahooooooo!

Yippee! This is it. Thing 23! Shazam!
Here's what I think:
1. My favorite thing has to be this blog. What a great way to keep track of what has been accomplished and it's fun, too. I have also enjoyed reading other people's blogs. I enjoyed the library thing, too!
2. As far as life long learning goals, I would say this program has given me so much confidence with my computer skills. Am I a computer expert? Not at all, but I am much further down the computer road than I was when I started. Would I take another computer class like this? You bet. I really don't like the group computer class mentality. I am ALWAYS one of the people on step 1 in the class when everyone else is on step 13. I liked doing this at on my own time at my own speed. Plus, my eyes start to glaze over the minute someone mentions VPN's and USB ports.
3. Surprises? Take aways? I am overwhelmed with all the fancy stuff I can do! Me? With a blog? Me have a blog with an embedded video from YouTube? I didn't know what a podcast was last week and now I can whip you up one. (I might need 3 days and my husband might divorce me, but I can podcast, baby!)
4. One suggestion for improvement would be to include other examples of websites, blogs, etc., that have a broader interest to all educators. We all love our librarians, and I know this course was intended for them, but a little variety in the examples woul be nice. The only other thing that could have made this better would have been some complimentary snacks and drinks like we have at workshops at the ad. bldg. Maybe you guys could have a surprise snack squad that travels around and passes out snacks when you see us working online. Come on...that would be fun!!!
5. Yes, indeed I would do this type of course again. (especially if you take me up on the surprise snack squad!)
6. Library 2Play is a refreshing and easy way to learn alot of impressive tools you can use in real life on your computer!
So...this is it! I hope to keep on bloggin' from time to time..and MAYBE I can get the elementary counselor posse to jump on this blogging bandwagon. I have enjoyed almost every minute on the playground.
What fun! I am available for consultations on podcasts, but only if you really have no idea what you are doing. I would add my blog URL to my e-mail signature line if you offer another course on how to do it!!! (can someone walk me through it??)

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Thing #22

I am having technical difficulties with Thing 21 so please stand by...my microphone doesn't work. (Jimbo found out it was broken and is trying to fix it. Not a good thing!)
So on to the Ning Thing! Another great idea. I looked at the library ning and the teacher ning...is there a counselor ning? I saw a ning for ESL teachers, another one for adminstrators, and yet another for special education teachers. You know what? I am perfectly fine without a counselor ning. Really. I did find some interesting stuff on teacherlingo, the teacher ning. One thing I have learned in all these "things" is that if you keep clicking, you will finally find something that interests you. I found a blog or two dealing with autism, which could be very beneficial to parents and teachers. I also found it interesting to read teacher blogs from all over the great U.S. of A and see that we are all dealing with similar issues. (isn't that what a ning is all about?)
Now, let me get back to that broken microphone....

Monday, June 23, 2008

Thing #21

Whoa, Nelly! This is a VERY advanced "thing"! It took me 3 days and the entire Birdsong clan working together to make this podcast dream come true. My oldest son would not participate in the podcast. He was on his last good nerve about 3 hours ago when I finally figured out the Audacity thing. The Birdsong crew was also very supportive with the microphone crisis. 1st we had a microphone that would not work, then we found a new one, then I put it down somewhere and couldn't find it for 2 days. Where was it? In the laptop suitcase!
The beauty of this whole "thing" is that I did it, even if the whole family had to help. Could I make another podcast? You know, I think I could. I think I've taken Audacity to places it's never been before and maybe we both learned something. I also know that both Louis and Thomas Birdsong now know how to make a podcast too, so we all learned something.
I am pretty proud of myself that I got this "thing" done. Find a comfortable chair to listen to....
My podcast

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Thing #20

Yahoo! I am on "Thing #20" and I know what I am doing! Pinch me so I know I am not dreaming! TeacherTube is a great teaching tool. I found several videos I really liked and will check back on this site frequently to see what's new. Instead of searching for library or librarians on YouTube I decided to see what kinds of treasures I would find if I typed in "counselor". Holy Toledo! Let me just say there are LOTS of people out there who aren't very happy with their school counselors and are delighted to make a video about it with many complaints. I am 100% sure none of the complaints are about SBISD counselors. Every one of us is 100%NORMAL.
Now for the piece de resisitance. I am going to embed my FAVORITE video I found on TeacherTube. It's magnificent....I am going to figure out a way to put this video in a guidance lesson next year and I am going to sing along with ol' Billy Joel.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Thing #19

I am on a winning streak with the last 2 "things". On thing 19, I see some stuff I know. I saw my old pal, http://www.librarything.com/ What is special about the Web 2.0 awards page is that there are so many useful websites all on one page. What I could see as being useful in the school setting would be the books, news and blogs, maps, collaborative writing, and word processing. As for me, I am still searching for how to use all these resources in the counseling world. Now, I am sure I could use some of the information found in the education group. I am not sure how reliable the question and advice section would be. I checked in to some of the websites in the "q and a" group and there was such a variety! http://answers.yahoo.com/ had some great insight regarding how to get over fear of thunderstorms, but I am not sure where the advice came from. Some of the other websites in the "q and a" category were about solving computer problems...now, that might come in handy for "not so computer savvy" me!

Thing #18

Eureka! I am a happy library playround camper again. While the rollyo "thing' sent me straight to a bottle of aspirin, I completely understand this "thing" and will use it. I watched the You Tube video (I do like those videos!) and have signed up for the Google docs. I can think of two ways I will use the google docs this year. Another staff member and I coordinate all the volunteers on our campus. We are forever updating volunteer data on several excel spreadsheets via many e-mails with lots of enclosures. I will share the google doc information with her and our volunteer job will become much easier. Another way I will use the information learned in this "thing" will be similar to the example used in the You Tube video. We have a school newspaper. Our school secretary is responsible for reminding everyone to turn in their articles and the articles also have to be translated. If I can get everyone on the Google Docs train, our newspaper jobs will also become a breeze. We can take care of lots of jobs at the same time without 33 e-mails back and forth.
I am officially letting go off my rollyo frustrations. I have found my computer nirvana for today in Google docs.

Thing #17

Rollyo. Another snappy idea. All the places on the web you go to all the time, now centrally located in one special place, on your own search engine. I appreciate the idea, I really do...but here is the problem. How many passwords, usernames and other things can one person remember? How many websites can we belong to? I think this is a super idea for someone who searches lots of search engines all day long. Me? If I need info from webmd.org, I just type it in and go there. It takes me less than 5 seconds to type the website address in and I don't have to remember a username or password. I do see how rollyo may be benenficial to some people (and maybe one day that someone might be me) but for now rollyo just doesn't do it for me.

Remember that cute commercial a few years ago that showed this very tired guy on a computer and the computer says. "You have reached the end of the internet. Please go back." Today, I feel like I'm there.

I did create my own search engine at Rollyo and I promise I will use it at least 10 times next year. judybsongssearch