Friday, January 29, 2010

The Pleasure of Meeting Lihongyan

Today, I had the pleasure of meeting Lihongyan, a teacher of English in China, who has been visiting our school in Connecticut. She is a gracious,lovely lady, and we hope to be able to continue communication with her even after she returns to China.
She says that she has enjoyed her visit here and has learned a lot. She had a very good time and felt the staff helped her a lot. She would like to share her experience with the teachers in China. From here, she will be visiting New York City and then on to Washington D.C. before returning to China. I hope the weather moderates a bit so she does not freeze to death while sightseeing. The picture above is of Lihongyan, Bo Wu, and Sara Frank.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Exciting Video Projects at Bethany Middle School

Here is just one example of a claymation PSA project the students in Mrs. Saisa's classes are producing. I think this one is awesome, and the message is so important.
I hope to feature more great student productions on this blog in the coming weeks.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Google Shared Documents

I had three young ladies in my lab this afternoon. They had come in to work on a script for one of their classes, and I watched as each opened a separate Word document. I suggested that they might like to log on to their amitybethany accounts and share one document. One of the girls had had more experience with using Google docs than the other two, so she initiated the document and shared it with them. They were sitting side by side, each editing the document and were quite pleased to see the document update as each saved a new entry. One of the young ladies asked if they could still work on this at home from their individual computers, and I said, "That's the whole purpose of Google docs." They were all pleased with what they accomplished and are going to let me interview them tomorrow on how it went when they collaborated from their home computers.

Even more exciting is the news that users can upload Word documents from their computers to Google docs - even files larger than 578kb, which was the size limitation previously. Now documents can be uploaded and shared even with a number of pictures embedded in the document.

It seems to get better and better. I hope we will not be disappointed in the future.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Discovery Time Starts Again

After quite a few days away from the computer, I opened my email this evening and started following links. I found my way to a blog by Michael Zimmer, a technology integration specialist at Hopkins Country School District in Madisonville, Kentucky. I followed a link in his blog to which he said English teachers were using with their students.
I created a quick PicLit and then joined in order to embed it here. It's kind of fun playing with pictures and words, and I'm sure the students will come up with much more creative products than mine:
PicLit from
See the full PicLit at

We'll be back to school in a brand new year on Monday. Let's hope our increasing use of technology in the classrooms will engage and inspire our students to produce wonderful work.