Digital Citizenship Curriculum

I cannot stress enough the importance of integrating digital citizenship into your daily instruction. From choosing a secure password to not posting inappropriate comments on facebook, to recognizing email scams, the K-12 Commonsense Media curriculum is an easy to use, simple and engaging option.

You can check out the curriculum options online: or you can contact Brian Dino here at DPS to do an entertaining and magical presentation for your class.

Seriously. It’s awesome. Seriously.

Check out a sample here:


Mobile Devices in the classroom

Shared by Charlie Leckenby at ETLS:

We’re hearing more and more about teachers using smart phones in classroom instruction, especially since these devices are what students are becoming experts with anyway. Do you know anyone who is doing this in DPS? Do you want to know more about it, and share that knowledge with your teachers? Here are some good resources:


BOOKS c2010


Teaching with the tools kids really use : learning with Web and mobile technologies / Susan Brooks-Young

Brooks-Young, Susan.

Schools Open Doors to Students’ Mobile Devices

Mobile Devices in the Classroom by Ron Schachter


EdWeek links: Mobile Learning Makes its Mark on K-12

iPodsibilities Blog: One teacher’s thoughts about using iPods and iPads in the classroom.


Let’s learn Google!

Now you all know how much I like Google apps and I admit I have not played with the apps for education  nearly enough, but I’m always looking for a new way to introduce Google to my students and fellow staff.

Richard Byrne provides a list of introductory activities to familiarize your school fellows with Google. You can find them here:

Infobytes: The “Did You Know…? edition

 Did you know that students can download cell phone ringtones that we can’t hear? It’s called the “mosquito” ringtone and it operates on a frequency that adults can’t hear. Want to test it for yourself? Try this link:

Did you know that you can access that link now by logging into the DPS network with your own login information? While I have found that it does not mean unlimited access to the web, you can click on the link in the DPS filtered page and log in with the username and password you use for Outlook. This will give you Youtube access. However, this also monitors your web usage, so make sure you log out and prevent students from using your computer because what they watch will be tied you YOUR personal account.

Did you know that there are tons of video contests out there for students? These contests can serve as extrinsic motivators or as great classroom tools to teach about editing, pacing, and audience. In fact, If you were to sign up for the Digital Storytelling Module offered by the DPS DEA( ) and co-taught by yours truly, you would have a great toolbox to help students create (literally) prizewinning videos.

 Would you like to know more about those contests?  The Online Video Contests ( )website has an easy to use setup, giving you a list of contests with brief overviews and a countdown of days left. Students can win $10,000 in college tuition if they create a winning video about safe driving, sponsored by the American Lawyers Association, or play golf with Annika Sorenstam by submitting a short video explaining why they should win. (And they check for creativity and copyright infraction) There are many more to be found.  Another great site is .  

Richard Byrne, author of the FreeTech4Teachers blog, has also pointed out a great contest from ( that asks students to create a video titled, “Washington DC through my lens…” which asks students: “Tell us about an issue, event, or topic that helped you better understand the role of the federal government in your life or community.” The focus is on looking at an issue from varying points of view for which our Opposing Viewpoints database or our E-Books would be fabulous. ( )

Did you know DPS-branded web options are coming? You can take a class from your humble librarian to learn more about these fabulous options for creating your own web page without having to wrestle with Manila. Stay tuned for the announcement from DPS and then sign up for my DEA Class (or bring me chocolate) to receive some in-depth training.

Did you know that our downtown library office offers three professional libraries for your use? The Classroom library ( ) is an excellent resource for classroom projects. If you need a selection of books on a particular topic at a variety of reading levels, our Classroom librarian can help you out. She can put together a book basket for you and send it through DPS mail. It does take about a week though, so plan ahead.

Our Video Film Library ( has a large selection of education-related films from jump rope techniques to a documentary on Mexico.

And our Professional Library offers a variety of titles for use in your continuing education. I am currently reading Teaching Generation M : a handbook for librarians and educators which has proven fascinating.

Did you know that Gale/Cengage has an app for your e-books? It’s called “Access My Library” The school edition will connect students and teachers with your library’s E-book collection using your school’s password. If you are a librarian, you need to call Gale to set it up, but then students can access your E-resources from anywhere with their ipod or iphone.

And lastly…

Did you know that these are my three favorite videos?




That’s all for this edition today, and thanks for reading the “Did you know” edition…Now you do!

♥Have a Great Week!♥

For Earth Day: A video about bottled Water

The Story of Stuff is a series of videos that are very informative and offer information about many different facets of being a smart consumer. These are great videos…short, filled with information, and they include a call to action for the viewer.

Here’s the video on bottled water:

For those who enjoyed the informative video we saw yesterday during the Google Forms workshop, here’s the website for Common Craft…one of my favorite informative video sites:

Infobytes for october

Looking for some handy tools for teaching?

We scoured the blogs and found a few from last month. Feel free to add more.

Economics and Current Events:
Reuters has created an interactive timeline of the 2008/09 financial crisis that can be a fascinating tool in the classroom. Another handy interactive timeline would be the one from the New York Times, chronicling government policies in response to past recessions.Common Craft has some great videos explaining banking, investing, saving money, and the stock market in plain English that you might want for your classroom as well. Social networking

Always wanted to tweet, but didn’t see how it’s useful in the classroom? Here’s a great blog about twittering in the classroom that will give you some ideas.

Do you have concerns about your privacy on facebook? Here are some tips for you.

Have you seen the fabulous screencast tutorials your librarian made about how to use the LION catalog more effectively for research and searching? Want to make your own? Screenr is a free easy to use online five minute screencasting tool that connects to your twitter account.

Here’s an article about how Boston College is using a wiki as a textbook for one of their information systems classes.

Looking for an online glossary of math vocabulary for students who need a little help? McGraw-Hill has a great website for you.

If you aren’t already watching David Bolinsky’s videos on TED, it’s time to start watching. His concept of the cell as a “huge, bustling city powered by micromachines” is stimulating and just gorgeous. (To go directly to the three-minute excerpt from the film, move forward to 6:55. )

Research and Information Literacy
How about those Common Craft Folks? A couple of my faves include Web Search Strategies in Plain English, The World Wide Web, and Zombies.

Along that same line, kids who need to know more can watch this helpful 1 minute video on Whatbrowser on what a web browser is.

Online Quiz Generators
This blog entry describes five favorite online quiz generators on the web.

Many Things is a great website for ESL learners and teachers. With crossword puzzles, songs, writing exercises, and more, this website has many helpful resources.

Copyright and the web

Those of you who include copyright in your library tutorials know how tricky this law can be For some great resources on teaching fair use and copyright, try these resources:

Teaching This website is straightforward and objective. It offers lesson plans for teaching copyright in the classroom. What I like about this site is that its goal is to cut through the misinformation out there.

Copyright Chart I took an entire semester of copyright in library school and I still get confused from time to time, so I find this chart to be a handy quick reference.

SCT Media overviews
This site has great sing along music videos, PowerPoint slide shows and more to help teach copyright and information literacy.

Copyright for educators
This is a fairly long video, but filled with helpful information about using copyrighted materials in the classroom.

The Center for Social Media
This is an amazing resource. With videos and handouts it covers fair use, satire, parody, Internet remixing, photocopying classroom materials, showing videos in the classroom, and many other relevant topics.

My favorite video has always been A fair(y) Use tale by Eric Faden of Bucknell. The video can be found on the TJ library web site.

And if you are looking for copyright-friendly files, Copyright Friendly  is a wiki with a plethora of links for you.