Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Dr. Barry Bishop

Dr. Barry Bishop has died.  I first met him in August of 2009 when I had him as a professor for one of the library classes I took at University of Houston Clear Lake.  It was my first semester of grad school, and the class probably wasn't one to start with, but my friend Betty Moore was taking it, and I wanted to be in a class with her as I started this new venture in life.  He is the one responsible for this 23 things blog.  It was his "puppy" so to speak. I took a lot of notes in his class---he was full of good advice for being out in the "real world" of librarianship. I appreciated the practical-ness.  It wasn't a class full of information that I would never be able to do, it was about where to find information that was useful and helpful.  Towards mid-November, as a class, we were pretty lethargic in class.  He finally stopped to ask what was up with us.  We bemoaned about our jobs and how tired we were (it was a 7-10 PM class on Tuesday night, after all!).  He kind of just listened to us--didn't fuss at us or lecture us, just listened.  We got done with our discussion for the evening and he let us go.  I don't remember how we found out about his cancer returning.  I think he sent us all an email informing us, letting us know that the last couple of classes would be led by his colleague.  She would be grading our final presentations.   Our class and the Thursday night class (which Betty was also attending) were the last two classes he taught.  He retired from Spring Branch ISD and UHCL at the end of the spring semester.  There are librarians around here that still quote him, and do things "The Barry Way".  I wish I had had more of an opportunity to learn from him.  I thank him for getting me off on the right foot for getting my masters degree.  I completed it back in August.  Today I found out his memorial service was yesterday (Monday), and at the time of the service, I was in Clear Lake ordering my graduation cap, gown, hood, and announcements.  I don't know if I would call that ironic, but it is definitely interesting timing.

I read today that he was at peace knowing that he was going to be with Jesus, so I suppose we'll be reunited again someday.  Maybe I'll ask him why Betty and I got that .5 deduction on our mid-term project.

Saturday, February 12, 2011


So, it's been about a year...I attended the TCEA conference in Austin, Texas this past week. WOW. Coupled with the fact that I am currently enrolled in Applications of Technology at UHCL, I only thought that I was learning a lot about technology in the Fall of 2009 when I completed the 23 things. This week I attended quite a few classes, some geared toward teachers, and some toward teacher-librarians (because, yes, librarians are ALSO teachers!). I had to produce a Jing video for the tech class, so one of the first sessions I attended was about Jing. I had two choices, I chose to attend the one that the presenter was from Fort Hood ISD, which is a school district based at Fort Hood. Dr. Rios also brought along his "mentees"... a group of juniors and seniors that help him with IT issues on their campuses. I applaud his support of "his kids", and while at times the presentation seemed stilted, he gave those kids quite a gift by letting them have turns during the presentation. I don't know how well I would have done in a room full of adults! At the end of the presentation, he asked us that when we pray for our troops, that we also pray for the children of the soldiers. They didn't ask to be part of it, they were born into it, and he admired the grace in which they handled the stress and the responsibility.

So, what did I learn? Well, Jing is a free software that you download (and if you get hooked, there is Jing Pro that you can pay for, as well as an even more expensive program--all allowing you to do more and fancier videos). I could see using Jing videos to post short training exercises for teachers and students alike. Can't remember how to post comments on Skyward for Progress Reports? Go click on the link and watch the video that explains it! Are you going to teach a group of students how to do a particular skill on the computer? Make a video, and then have it available on your webpage or blog so that they can go back and refer to it again. Endless possibilities. So, withoug too much furter ado, here is my first video (well, I did have several takes before I finally stopped with this version).

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Friday, February 5, 2010

I Love this Commercial

Not being much of a football fan, the Super Bowl doesn't phase me much.  We get together with friends, sample the munchies that get contributed, and I sit around and visit with other non-football type peeps (away from the area with the TV, mind you!).  Maybe that is why I just discovered this commercial the other day.  Let's see if I can remember how to embed from YouTube.  It's entitled "Super Fan".  I call it "Super Funny"...hey, I laughed out loud at it when I was at home by myself.  That means a lot!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Thing #23

What were my favorite discoveries or exercises: Flickr is something that I find myself clicking onto a lot—it is my goto source for pictures to help with lessons with my ESOL kiddos. Online Image Generators are a lot of fun. Sometimes a lesson needs a little something to make it pop, and now I know how to create a graphic, and there are lots of different styles to choose from. Photostory, is the most exciting thing to me. I think I will try to teach my students how to use this during our study of space.

How has this program assisted or affected your lifelong learning goals? I see the importance of using technology more in the classroom. I am guilty of having the three computers in my room not being used effectively. I had a rotation for the students to work on Odyssey, but other than that, we didn’t use them so much. I am very thankful that I am on a team that got the Power To Learn Grant. Although it has taken a LOT of time teaching the kids to be independent and how to trouble shoot, they are very enthusiastic about using the technology to further their knowledge and sharpen their skills. Because of doing the 23 things, I am more willing to step out and try something new, and share it with the students for them to try.

Were there any take-aways or unexpected outcomes from this program that surprised you? I really like the idea behind Rollyo. I liked being able to make my own search roll for the units that I do in the classroom to help my students be a little more successful at finding information they need on the web. We really like using EnchantedLearning.com, but the students can only take so many notes on the limited amount of information on that site. I hope that this becomes a reliable tool for me to use.

What could we do differently to improve upon this program’s format or concept? The only suggestion I have is to maybe move the RSS feeds section down a couple, BUT, I do like that there was a good mix of “things”. There would be some easier ones, then there would be one that slowed me down some. There is a good mix of video presentations, to help learning be a little easier. I really appreciated being able to work at my own pace.

If we offered another discovery program like this in the future, would you choose to participate? Highly Likely

 How would you describe your learning experience in ONE WORD or in ONE SENTENCE, so we could use your words to promote 23 Things learning activities? Masochistic!

Thing #22 Nings

Nings are a great tool for people to use to search out other people with the same interests. Seeing these educator nings makes me realize that teachers have similar issues, no matter where they are in the country (or in the world, in some cases!) I have found that looking through nings is also a great way to pass the time while sitting at your grandpa’s house—especially when he only turns on the TV for a few minutes a day!
There were two sites that I especially liked for their technology information.
elementary teachers
This is a good way to have discussions on particular issues that a classroom teacher has to deal with (forums tab). You can find helpful information about something you might be about to embark on---some pointers on what worked well for a teacher, and what things blew up, and how they would do it differently. I wish I had had access to this information as a new teacher! As a student at UHCL, I look forward to using the librarian nings to gather ideas of how to be an effective librarian!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Thing #21 Photostory

How fun is Photostory!?! I am so glad that I learned about this fabulous program before my cruise in January! When I played with Animoto last year, I thought that was neat, but was limited in the music (or at least you are with the free ones). You have so much more control on this program, and I love how you can narrate your own, and you can use your own music straight from itunes! (Oh, geez. How does copyright laws affect this?!?) I created a story using the pictures I took of my class from last school year. This might be a cool program to use for book reports. The students can find pictures that go along with their story and narrate a summary, or book review. It is very user friendly. My only issue was deciding what songs to play with the pictures. I could have spent hours more looking through my music. I could see that if you were having younger kids picking out music, you might consider limiting their choices! I was working on putting some pictures in a power point to put on the class Wiki, but now I am going to see if I can post a photostory instead. The music I used with this story:  Theme song from the TV show "Saved By the Bell", and "Fun, Fun, Fun" by the Beach Boys.

I found that I had to revert to the old editor in order to get the video button to link my photostory. (Yes, it took me a while to figure that out, but I was going to figure it out dadgumit!)

Thing #20 YouTube, TeacherTube, Zamzar

I searched Library 2.0, and came up with a parody of the A&E show, “Dog, the Bounty Hunter”…titled “Kat, the Library Fine Bounty Hunter”. While I found it slightly amusing, I decided that this wasn’t something I wanted to embed on my blog. You can look it up if it interests you! I also found a Bookcart Drill Team competition video…do we have one of these is SBISD? After watching some irrelevant things, some funny, some disturbing, I found one that struck a chord with me, simply titled “Web 2.0 Technologies”.

In math, we are about to begin addition with regrouping, and I found this great video on Teacher Tube to explain how to use the program of Kidspiration to model for the children how to add using base 10 blocks.