Wednesday, May 27, 2009

I'm proud to say I follow the creator of this ezine, ktenkely, on Twitter. This is incredible! Her website is

Discover Simple, Private Sharing at

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Google Labs presents Similar Images

Through my Twitter network today I learned about a new Google feature called "Similar Images." I had to try it out and it works very well!

After searching for an image, you have the option to find other images that are similar to the one you have in mind. No more searching through page after page of images that aren't relevant to your needs.

For example, here is a search for "beetle."

Maybe I'm looking for pictures of beetles on leaves. I click on the "similar images" link and VOILA...

Or maybe I need something more like this...

VERY helpful! Check it out for yourself:

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Transforming School Culture

I learned of this book and accompanying Voicethread (embedded below) from my Twitter network. Also see Bill Ferriter's "The Tempered Radical" blog for more information and a link to a PDF of Anthony Muhammad's book. This has really got me thinking about a summer book study conducted through a Voicethread.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Never mind the digital divide...

I came across this important information on the Reading Rockets blog by Joann Meier:
"In their book Summer Reading, Shin and Krashen summarize their research on summer access with these points:
  • The crucial activity that occurs during the summer, the activity that causes the difference in growth in literacy, is recreational reading. Children from higher-income families read more over the summer.
  • The reason middle-class children read more over the summer is that they have more access to books. They have more access to books at home, live closer to bookstores, and live closer to public libraries. Also, public libraries available to the children from high-income families are better. They have more books, more staff, and are open longer hours.
  • Other research confirms that children read more when they have more access to books.
So, here's the bottom line: Children of poverty need more access to reading material, especially during the summer."

Summer vacation is here in just a few weeks. What can we do? Read Joanne's blog next week to learn what her elementary school is doing.

Please add your suggestions to the comments section.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

From the department of "I wish I had said that..."

An open letter to the teacher who said "I hate technology" by Patrick Higgins:

Amazing. Truly amazing.

This took the artist, Lucinda Schreiber, 6 months from start to finish. She worked on it full time for 4 months. There are 1900 frames, and the video frame rate varies from 6 to 12 frames per second. Isn't it remarkable that something as low tech as a chalkboard could be used to create something high tech?

Firekites - AUTUMN STORY - chalk animation from Lucinda Schreiber on Vimeo.

Monday, May 04, 2009

Custom color palette based on your photo

A colleague asked about being able to scan in a wallpaper sample and finding out what colors are used. I seemed to remember reading about a website that would do just that, and after a search of my Bloglines feeds I came across this post at Cliotech (thanks Jennifer) that led me to pic2color.

Even better, pic2color has a way cool widget. Try it for yourself without ever leaving my blog. Browse for a picture on your computer, or paste the URL of one already on the web.

Here's one I did of an African Violet. Isn't that cool?