Sunday, December 14, 2008

What Type is that Blog?

Found this on my reader today. It's a site called Typlealyzer and supposedly analyzes the 'personality' attributes of the blogger. Here's mine:

ISTP - The Mechanics

The independent and problem-solving type. They are especially attuned to the demands of the moment are masters of responding to challenges that arise spontaneously. They generally prefer to think things out for themselves and often avoid inter-personal conflicts.

The Mechanics enjoy working together with other independent and highly skilled people and often like seek fun and action both in their work and personal life. They enjoy adventure and risk such as in driving race cars or working as policemen and firefighters.

I thought that I was more of a Duty Fulfiller than a Mechanic but this is what came up. Further analysis shows what part of the brain is active during the writing of this blog. It seems that the thinking, practical and sensing parts of my brain were most dominant - it happens to be mostly the left side of the brain - nothing going on in the right according to the diagram (which won't copy here). I couldn't get it to analyze my wikis (here and here). Interesting stuff!

One Year Anniversary

Today is the one year anniversary of this blog. I have to say that I had no idea of the amount of time, energy, researching, soul-searching, and tongue-holding it took to write this weekly post when I decided to start last year. I've been able to share some really neat things that have applications to education and some that are just fun. The most gratifying are the comments have been posted. It's just like getting mail from someone unexpected - a real treat!

Just a brief post today about the highlights of the keynote speech by David Warlick from the Western Regional Computer Advisory Committee Symposium held in London on Dec 11. This was not the first time that I've heard David. Last year at the OLA Superconference, he was the OSLA keynote speaker. Here is the list of critical points that I feel he made:
  • The 21st century teacher must be a master learner
  • Print resources are beginning to disappear - what are the implications to schools?
  • The world is moving from a competative stance to a more cooperative stance.
  • Future job opportunities will be in science, engineering and the ARTS
  • Students of today are different
  • Video games are learning engines
  • Broadband access is an equity issue
  • Information is raw material
  • To be literate in the 21st century means: learning literacy, learning habits and adoptin of a learning lifestyle
  • What are the pedogogies of information abundance?
To me, what really stood in mind was the issue of equity in this 21st century world. David said that many countries are moving to wireless. For example, he said the whole county of Macedonia is wireless and Mexico will soon have broadband access for all in a short time. I fear that our country's politicians are really not focusing on what needs to be done to assure that Canada is able to compete in this flat world. If investment in infrastructure is needed to stimulate the economy, then providing broadband access to all Canadians seems a good infrastructure investment.
I look at many school boards and see issues of equity - new schools have all kinds of technology (computers with Smartboards in every classroom) and old schools struggle with poor wiring and lack of equipment. There hasn't been a new secondary school built in our area since the 70s. Our secondary teachers say that the biggest barrier to implementing read/write web tools is lack of access to computers.
Comments from David's 2 cents Worth blog post about his presentation said that many of the teachers at the keynote would not do anything about the message. I really think that teachers want to integrate more technology into their teaching but are deterred by the lack of access and the reliability of some of the technology.
And what about all of those students who don't have computers and Internet access at home? I fear that they are being left behind. That's my 2 cents worth.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Nearest Book Meme

In essence, what I have learned from teacher research has made me breathe Eleanor Duckworth's (1996) question as a mantra:"What if it were otherwise?"

* Get the book nearest to you. Right now.
* Go to page 56.
* Find the 5th sentence.
* Write this sentence - either here or on your blog.
* Copy these instructions as commentary of your sentence.
* Don't look for your favorite book or your coolest but really the nearest.

This was lying on my kitchen floor, waiting for me to get in my "to be read" pile. You Gotta' be the Book by Jeffrey Wilhelm, who will be coming to present in our district in February.