Susannah Richards. She’s a genius. Do you know her? Susannah Richards is one of those children’s literature experts who somehow manages to be everywhere at once. She’s an Associate Professor of Education at Eastern Connecticut State University where (and I’m getting this from her bio) “she teaches graduate and undergraduate courses on language arts methods, children’s and young adult literature, and reading and writing strategies for elementary and secondary teachers.” Oh. And she won herself a Trustees Teaching Award at the university level this year.
Why am I telling you all this? Well, truth be told I sort of rely on Susannah’s knowledge. I’ve a habit of finding smart people so that I may cling to them like ten-year-old barnacles on the hulls of salty ships. And remember that snazzy little Harper Collins librarian preview I wrote up yesterday? Well, Susannah was there with me when all of a sudden, out of the blue, she starts telling me all these cool things educators and teachers know about that are unknown to a lot of the librarians out there.
Here then is a brief smattering of the excellent online resources teachers get up to, as briefly introduced to me by Susannah Richards. Ms. Richards, I am in your debt.
Cool Thing #1: TeacherTube
You slick educators you. How long was it going to be before you mentioned TeacherTube to us? I suppose I’d heard the name mentioned vaguely on my blog, but I never really pricked my ears up until now (note that the comment section of The Strange Case of Origami Yoda, Tara mentions that posting the origami video to TeacherTube would be a boon for schools).
Basically, a lot of school’s block YouTube. This makes educational videos a bit tough to teach with. The solution? A kid safe, teacher friendly site called Teacher Tube. They describe themselves this way: “Our goal is to provide an online community for sharing instructional videos. We seek to fill a need for a more educationally focused, safe venue for teachers, schools, and home learners. It is a site to provide anytime, anywhere professional development with teachers teaching teachers. As well, it is a site where teachers can post videos designed for students to view in order to learn a concept or skill.”
Almost anyone can post too! So those authors amongst you who create educational videos to accompany your books . . . why not upload those same videos onto Teacher Tube? Makes sense to me.
Cool Thing #2: Glogster
This one took a little while for me to wrap my head around, but Susannah explained to me this way. Essentially, it’s a site where kids make their own “electronic posters”. A lot of kids make their own (I looked at this one created by a fan for the band One Republic to get the gist of it). This is potentially great for teachers since it’s like an interactive site designed for a single topic. You could apply it to a school topic and have the kids create virtual posters of whatever it is they’re studying. On the librarian site of the equation, I can see branches creating web programs for kids and teens where they make their own glogs. There are applications here, if you’re willing to seek them out.
Cool Thing #3: Slideshare
It’s the YouTube of PowerPoint. Upload your PowerPoints or look at other people’s. There may even be a way of looking at a PowerPoint on the web, rather than uploading it onto a stick drive, but I’m not sure. It would take some exploration. Students could create their own and upload them to the site too. Pretty slick.
Cool Thing #4: Bibme
The site’s slogan is “leave the formatting to us”. Why? Because it’s a Bibliography website. Perhaps you feel that learning how to format your citations in the MLA style is character building. If you don’t feel that way, however, then this site will be a boon for your students. I know I’m grateful for it!
Big time thanks to Susannah for bringing all these sites to my attention. I’ll have to spend some time going over these thoroughly for my own personal use. Cheers!