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Web 2.0 and School Administrators
Thursday, 28 June 2007
Who Is Picking on Whom?
Topic: Leadership Issues

The Pew Internet & American Life Project just released a new survey that takes a look at which teens are most likely to be bullied online. While two-thirds of the survey participants reported that offline bullying is still more prevalent, older female teens are the top targets. Use the link provided above to access a summary and link to the full survey report.

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Posted by sjbrooks_young at 11:19 PM PDT
Updated: Thursday, 28 June 2007 11:21 PM PDT
After NECC and a Challenge from Scott McLeod
Topic: Leadership Issues

I'm between flights at DFW. Since I didn't take the opportunity to write about NECC during the conference, it seemed that now might be a good time.

I thoroughly enjoyed the folks I worked with in workshops on Sunday and on Tuesday morning. The group demographics were quite variety and both groups were really lively. It's a real pleasure to spend time with people who enjoy what they do and who are on the look-out for new ideas and skills to take back to their schools or districts. 

One webtop app we used Tuesday was Google Docs & Spreadsheets. We briefly discussed the fact that some folks' eyes cross when dealing with the interface and tags instead of folders (for file organization). In one of those wouldn't-you-know-it moments, I went to the site that evening to check some files that workshop participants had shared with me and the entire interface had been changed! You can now organize your files into folders and see a list of the names of people you are collaborating with and how many files you are sharing with each! Click on that number and you get a list of the files (each a live link). Pretty cool! Now if they'd just get Presently going!!!

The rest of NECC was a blur. Many meetings, a bit of time in the Exhibit Hall, a few sessions. But, a valuable and interesting time. For the last ten years or so, I've found the networking aspect of conferences to be the most valuable for me. True again with NECC!

Now for Scott's challenge. Click that link to read all about it. He's declared July 4 Leadership Day and would like bloggers to post about effective school technology leadership. 

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Posted by sjbrooks_young at 3:50 PM PDT
Updated: Thursday, 28 June 2007 3:55 PM PDT
Wednesday, 27 June 2007
Wikis in Plain English
Topic: Emerging Technologies

Ever tried to explain a wiki in under 4 minutes? This video from commoncraft does a great job!

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Posted by sjbrooks_young at 7:29 PM PDT
Updated: Wednesday, 27 June 2007 7:32 PM PDT
Friday, 22 June 2007
Did You Know 2.0
Topic: Leadership Issues

Karl Fisch and Scott McLeod have just weighed in with an updated version of Karl's presentation Did You Know. You can view it here. Thanks, guys!



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Posted by sjbrooks_young at 5:25 PM PDT
Updated: Friday, 22 June 2007 5:27 PM PDT
Thursday, 21 June 2007
Catching Up
Topic: Emerging Technologies

It has been an incredibly busy month. I've been so busy doing that I haven't taken the time to blog about it. That's okay. I think I'm learning that sometimes something simply has to give. And this has been where I've been able to let go briefly.

I fly to Atlanta on Saturday for NECC and am looking forward to everything but the heat and humidity the forecast is promising. In getting ready for a workshop I'll be presenting Tuesday, I revisited  This beta site offers a free online interactive whiteboard. I played around with it briefly, but found it somewhat clunky (guess that's why it's beta). But this time I discovered a new feature I'll be using during the workshop. It's call a Graffiti Board and it can either be embedded on a web page or users can use a link to reach it. I see real possibilities for this is workshops when I want participants to have a chance to share ideas collaboratively without having to sign up for some kind of account first. Anyway, I'm linking to a sample here. Try it out! Click on the 'A' button to type text or on the pencil button to draw.


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Posted by sjbrooks_young at 8:21 PM PDT
Updated: Friday, 22 June 2007 5:26 PM PDT
Tuesday, 29 May 2007
Presentation on Cyberbullying
Topic: Leadership Issues

Scott McLeod has posted a Breeze slide show called Administrator's Guide to Cyberbullying. I encourage you to view and share this timely presentation.

Thanks, Scott! 

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Posted by sjbrooks_young at 3:47 PM PDT
Updated: Tuesday, 29 May 2007 3:50 PM PDT
The Guerrilla Season book blog
Topic: Classroom Blogging

I'm always looking for good examples of classroom use of blogs. I found the Guerrilla Season book blog awhile ago and have shared the site with a number of educators.

Now teacher Eric Langhorst has posted a video clip on Teacher Tube that describes how this project works. You can also download the clip here:

Download: Posted by speakingofhistory at

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Posted by sjbrooks_young at 3:23 PM PDT
Updated: Tuesday, 29 May 2007 3:28 PM PDT
Webtools for Educators Wiki
Topic: E-Communication

I'll be using the Webtools for Educators wiki at a couple of conferences during the first two weeks of June. If you haven't visited the wiki in a while, there are a number of additions, both tools and examples. Check it out!

Also, as you're looking, if you notice that I've left out something, please feel free to add it. Helpful comments and feedback on existing resources are also welcome. The password is webtools.

Looking forward to any and all contributions!

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Posted by sjbrooks_young at 3:14 PM PDT
Updated: Tuesday, 29 May 2007 3:16 PM PDT
Friday, 11 May 2007
Having a Cell Phone at School Is not a Constitutional Right
Topic: Leadership Issues

I'm a couple of days behind on this, but the NY State Supreme Court ruled earlier this week that students do not have a constitutional right to have cell phones at school and parents do not have a constitutional right to expect that their children should be allowed to have a cell phone at school. The decision did include a statement that it is reasonable for schools to ban disruptive devices.

I'm of two minds with this. The digital immigrant in me is amazed me that elementary age children have cell phones at all. I raised two kids who managed to get into high school before a cell phone became a must-have accessory. Even then, taking them to school was not an option. By the same token, I didn't raise my children in post 9-11 New York City and realize that I might have a completely different view of connectivity if I were. I cannot imagine how I would feel about being able to reach my children 24/7 under those circumstances. So while I understand that teachers do not want their classes disrupted by cell phones, I also think that parents' concerns need to be honored.

I think that cell phones may be the chewing gum of the 21st century. They're easy to conceal, ubiquitous, and it may be that no matter how many rules and regulations educators establish, they will find that a cell phone ban is impossible to enforce. And unlike gum, as cell phones become increasing sophisticated there are ways they can be used as tools for teaching and learning.

This is a starfish vs. spider situation. If you don't know what I'm referring to, check out this link and consider reading the book. There are ways we could be dealing with this that don't involve absolute bans and might actually be productive.

So...I'm thinking that we need to reevaluate our stand on this technology in schools. While I think it's unrealistic to ban them completely, I believe that rules for usage can be established and enforced. 

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Posted by sjbrooks_young at 11:01 AM PDT
Updated: Friday, 11 May 2007 11:04 AM PDT
Wednesday, 9 May 2007
Getting a Grip on Second Life
Topic: Emerging Technologies

I joined Second Life (SBY Writer) at the urging of a couple of friends and have attended a couple of virtural activities. The first was a tour of a museum and the second was a discussion about how something like Second Life might impact K-12 education.

The tour was interesting, once I figured out how to walk, sit, and transport. The discussion last night was tougher. What I encountered was the same thing that puts me off chat rooms, TappedIn, and other online synchronous discussions. There were 6 or 7 people involved in the discussion, but it seemed more like a free-for-all than a conversation. Folks either talked over one another with a bunch of different ideas being put out there all at the same time, or everyone sat quietly. Is there a convention for online conversations involving that many people, or is it typically every avatar for him/herself? Right now, I find that I'm mostly interested in figuring out how to have a really cool outfit and not be homeless!

Seriously, I think I understand why kids find this so engaging, but I do see that I have a steep learning curve for myself. Where to find the time??? 


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Posted by sjbrooks_young at 1:10 PM PDT
Updated: Wednesday, 9 May 2007 1:12 PM PDT

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