Saturday, July 04, 2009 » Blog Archive » Meme from Mum: The Paradoxical Commandments

  • tags: no_tag

      • People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered.
Love them anyway.
      • If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives.
Do good anyway.
      • If you are successful, you win false friends and true enemies.
Succeed anyway.
      • The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow.
Do good anyway.
      • Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable.
Be honest and frank anyway.
      • The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds.
Think big anyway.
      • People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs.
Fight for a few underdogs anyway.
      • What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight.
Build anyway.
      • People really need help but may attack you if you do help them.
Help people anyway.
      • Give the world the best you have and you’ll get kicked in the teeth.
Give the world the best you have anyway.
      • ETA: People will always surprise you.

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Franken’s Victory Bolsters Democratic Grip in Senate -

  • tags: no_tag

    • After nearly eight months of waiting, almost 20,000 pages of legal briefs, and millions of dollars in election costs,
      • What is wrong with this picture? Top down party politics from Chuck Shumer and the DNC made it impossible for Kentucky Democrats to field a decent candidate so I am forced to conclude that the two party system is what's wrong. And the biggest stumbling block to change--incumbency. Solution might be, in part, term limits. I know that means losing the likes of Russ Feingold, but it also means that Kentucky could get out from under the grip of McConnel and Bunning on the Senate side and Rogers and Chandler on the House side. - post by tellio
    • In weeks past, some Republican leaders had urged Mr. Coleman to press on to the federal courts if need be, but those calls faded Tuesday.
      • The lesson here for Democrats? Never give up. Put your money where your mouth is. Fight for your people and keep fighting. - post by tellio
    • “The Supreme Court of Minnesota has spoken, and I respect its decision and will abide by the result. It’s time for Minnesota to come together under the leaders it has chosen and move forward. I join all Minnesotans in congratulating our newest United States senator — Al Franken.”
      • A mouthful of bitter for Coleman, one of those Senators whose whining over the last year has reeked of self-indulgence and entitlement. The voters spoke eight months ago so why does the NYT allow this guy a pass. - post by tellio
    • “When you win an election this close, you know that not one bit of effort went to waste,” said Mr. Franken
      • Spoken like someone who is already running again. I wonder if his truncated term will give voters the feeling that he needs a full term when he comes up for re-election. This recount destroys any chance that Coleman could challenge again. Republicans aren't very good at the unintended consequences game. - post by tellio
    • With 60 votes (including those of two independents) now most likely aligned with the Democrats, the party could avoid filibusters.
      • Assumes party discipline and a willingness on Obama's part to call Dems out if needed and punish if called to do so. He hasn't shown much stomach for this yet. - post by tellio
    • Mr. Coleman, who some in Minnesota were already speculating might run for governor in 2010
      • I cannot hope that he would make it past the primary. - post by tellio
    • After so much turmoil, the phone call was warm and gracious, Mr. Franken said, adding later that he had recalled thinking in the midst of it: “This is nice. This is a nice way to end it.”
      • And there it is- that damned club. We are damned if we cannot get this notion out of Washington. The sick, entitled sense that any guild gets when it invests a new member. Now you are one of us so you have to follow our rules foremost and not the rules of those you are constituted to serve. - post by tellio

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

News: U.S. Push for Free Online Courses - Inside Higher Ed

    • Community colleges and high schools would receive federal funds to create free, online courses in a program that is in the final stages of being drafted by the Obama administration.
      • This is overdue for high schools. My question here is this: who will manage the systems involved? Local servers? In the cloud with someone like Amazon s3? - post by tellio
    • reach more students and to link basic skills education to job training.
      • Fits Kentucky's higher ed mandate. Now how shall we provide the necessary 'learning brokers and concierges" needed to imagine this into being? - post by tellio
    • John White, press secretary for the Education Department
      • Flack? Of course. - post by tellio
      • John White has joined the U.S. Department of Education as Press Secretary. White was Chief Communications Officer for the Prince George’s County (Md.) Public Schools. Before that, he worked at AAA Mid-Atlantic and also served as Press Secretary to Maryland’s Secretary of State. - post by tellio
    • the federal government pay for (and own) courses that would be free for all, as well as setting up a system to assess learning in those courses, and creating a "National Skills College" to coordinate these efforts, the plan could be significant far beyond its dollars.
      • Effects on existing systems--developmental courses in community colleges, lack of experience with online learning systems. - post by tellio
    • and offer them free -- and is also pushing that movement in the direction of community colleges.
      • Who will teach these free courses? Who will they be affiliated with? How does this affect university bottom lines especially those whose bottom lines have come to increasingly depend upon tuition from students who have been able to borrow cheaply? - post by tellio
      • If these free courses are used to keep from having to pay bucks for general education and developmental/remedial courses, what will this mean for those teaching these courses now? - post by tellio
      • so - post by tellio
    • "This is so spot on in terms of what's needed," said Curtis J. Bonk, a professor of instructional systems technology at Indiana University at Bloomington and author of The World Is Open: How Web Technology Is Revolutionizing Education (forthcoming from Jossey-Bass).
      • - post by tellio
      • Interesting book on open education-- - post by tellio
    • the impact of bringing free online courses to those who may need basic skills and job training could have much more of an impact than the free courses from elite universities.
      • A very appropriate area for research--who can predict now what will happen? Don't we need to hypothesize b4 we spend? - post by tellio
    • the impact on the individuals and the economy could be huge.
      • Ilich's Convivial Tool - post by tellio
    • According to the draft materials from the administration, the program would support the development of 20-25 "high quality" courses a year, with a mix of high school and community college courses. Initial preference would go to "career oriented" courses. The courses would be owned by the government and would be free for anyone to take. Courses would be selected competitively, through peer review, for support. And the courses would be "modular" or "object based" such that they would be "interoperable" and could be offered with a variety of technology platforms.
      • In writing terms what are "career-oriented" courses? Resume writing? Essay writing? Web skills? Research skills? Where do we help folks become better people? Is that any of our business? Is this the death of the university? - post by tellio
    • work to develop examinations that could be given at the end of the courses so that colleges, employers and students could judge how much learning had taken place.
      • OK. there it is--the agenda item that I had been waiting for, the corollary to NCLB-- a national higher ed curriculum. - post by tellio
    • And the National Skills College would work to promote programs that might mix the free courses with tuition courses so students could earn degrees at lower cost.
      • Please, limn out the consequences. Don't just do it. Nike be damned. - post by tellio
    • t would be open to public agencies and to private for-profit or nonprofit groups.
      • I cannot help but think this is a process ripe with possibilities for corruption and rife with those who are good at gaming the system with rigged research and glossy applications and money to beat out those who might have better courses not packaged as well. - post by tellio
      • Bias toward those who are good at jumping through the hoops of federal grant writing. - post by tellio
    • Martha J. Kanter,
      • - post by tellio
    • the Community College Consortium for Open Education Resources, which has pioneered the idea of making textbooks and other course materials for community college students available free and online.
      • And they have a Ning site: - post by tellio
      • The consortium seems well thought out: And it is grand to think that such folks have made their way into the Obama UnderSecy circle. - post by tellio
      • Here is a textbook that was developed. - post by tellio
    • "It's time for this," he said.
      • Homogenizing toward the best? Fine if we know they are the best, but my experience in these matters indicates transitional certainty at best. In other words, everything I know is wrong. - post by tellio
    • 'Hey there are these courses now available for free' is going to create incentives for lots of laptop programs to appear," he said.
      • And there is a whole new layer of devices in the technopolis that offer other affordances (smartphones, netbooks, library internet access, community wi-fi) that if beefed up could really make this happen. - post by tellio
    • The discussion draft for the job training program calls for spending $500 million a year in the first five years of the program, during which grants would be awarded competitively to community colleges, and $1.3 billion after that, at which point 50 percent of funds would be awarded by formula to states, 25 percent awarded to those states showing high performance programs, and 25 percent to community colleges, awarded competitively.
    • To be eligible, community colleges would need to agree to track and report on student outcomes, and to set targets for graduation rates and "employment-related outcomes," while also serving "high need populations." Funds could then be used to create programs that "blend basic skills and occupational training," to provide "comprehensive, personalized services to help students plan their coursework and careers and support services that will keep them in school," and to create programs in partnerships with employers
      • How they must sing for their supper. Not exactly a stick, but indirectly a big one for those administrators who fail to belly up to this bar. - post by tellio
    • The loan fund for community college facilities would receive $10 billion under the plan.
      • Ahhh, bricks for clicks. - post by tellio
    • States would distribute funds based on "demonstrated need," with an emphasis on expanding capacity in programs that "meet employer needs in the areas of health care, green jobs, science, engineering and technology."
      • Seems like a godsend to anyone wanting to teach or create learning objects/courses in nursing, sustainability, solar and green retrofitting, and access/training for using the online tools needed to make this work. - post by tellio
    • but that they were generally encouraged by the ideas in play.
      • They smell that 10,000,000,000 bucks in the air. The 50,000,000? Well, just look at the zeroes, dude. So as I understand it we create the courses for the National Skills College and they will come? I can see lots of ancillary benefits much like we got when we called the Interstate Highway System a national defense project, but need I point out the downside of that system. And who is considering and talking about these long terms effects especially in rural areas where many of these students expect to be. - post by tellio
    • He said that colleges are being forced to turn students away, "which is the wrong thing to be doing in this economy," and that the funds for job training programs could help community colleges educate more people, and help them prepare for good jobs.
      • Yes, this happened here at my university. They raised admission standards in an attempt to stabilize student enrollment. Why? Because funds were static and everyone knows what happens to university programs when too little money chases too many students-the degradation of existing programs under the increased enrollment pressure. - post by tellio
    • Boggs said that his association has estimated a $100 billion need for new community college facilities,
      • Here are some stats from their pages: but not exactly what I was hoping for. - post by tellio
      • Would like to know where this big round number came from. - post by tellio
    • Boggs also noted the unusual prominence that the administration is giving to community colleges as institutions that can help deal with the country's economic mess. "I think the spotlight is really shining on community colleges right now," he said.
      • Not really so surprising given Obama's community organizer orientation. Public policy is taking a much needed turn to the 80% who might benefit immensely from such programs. (That 80% figure is simply a blind obeisance to Pareto.) - post by tellio

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Web 2.0 Keychain Users - iConnect iLearn in the 21st Century

"This is a place for users of the keychain to share your versions and your experiences!"
  • Kevin H Informal leadership activity Certification/authentification activity Informal learning What emergent activity might this be evidence of? 
  • Emerging?  Since contemporary certification in areas like this is so slow or non-existent (a characteristic that is likely to grow in tech areas as the rate of change accelerates in an open source/massively multi-developer world) then I might look for alternatives to "badges of expertise" that we see here with the keychains.  The little laminated keyring cards are little diplomas the growing weight of which visually signifies ones growing weight of authority. 

Monday, June 29, 2009

Iran: Crackdown on Dissidents Silences Opposition |

  • tags: emergence, leadership

    • ehran’s brutal crackdown on Iranians protesting against the country’s June 12 election results, which has largely succeeded in clearing the streets, has received extensive media coverage around the world. At the same time, however, the Iranian authorities have been conducting another crackdown behind the scenes that is perhaps more consequential.
      • The opposition in Iran might be said to be informal in many ways. Who leads in their Twitter Revolution? - post by tellio

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.


  • tags: no_tag

    • I’ve been spending time over this past year reflecting and evaluating on how I can be more effective in teaching writing — both to English Language Learners and my mainstream ninth-grade students.
      • In Kentucky writing teachers have had to cope with the 'demise' of the writing portfolio in their own classrooms, but perhaps what's worse they have had to deal with its demise in other content area classrooms. - post by tellio
    • the extraordinary The Write Institute curriculum
      • "The WRITE Institute is a National Academic Excellence model for sustained professional development in writing. WRITE establishes partnerships with schools, districts, and county offices of education to improve student achievement by building teacher efficacy and skills in the teaching of writing." - post by tellio
    • “authentic audience” — in other words, someone other than me.
      • I like this very simple definition. Writing to learn, yes, but mostly to do since the object of all teaching is to get student to use what they learn. Writing to learn that does not result in 'doing' of some sort is... A WASTE OF EVERYONE'S TIME. - post by tellio
    • I’ve also been trying to pull together a list of easy online sites where students write more for an “authentic audience” and meet the following criteria:
      • I am a sucker for lists like this. I am just going to visit and annotate a few of these, not a bad idea for students to do either using Diigo and a blog. - post by tellio
    • * The writing required would be short, not lengthy pieces, that could be done in a reasonable amount of time — a few days at a maximum and preferably less.

      * The creating and posting process is simple — accessible both to my English Language Learner students and to me.

      * Posting the piece does not necessarily require any kind of ongoing commitment for communication — once it’s up, it might be interesting to check-back after awhile to see if there have been any reactions (if the site is set-up for that kind of involvement), but it’s really just a matter of sticking it up there in a place that gets a fair amount of “traffic” and  knowing that it’s likely others will read it.

      * There seems to be some kind of enforced standards for all the content that’s posted on the site.  In other words,  when students explore it to see models of what others have written, it’s unlikely they will encounter something that is inappropriate for classroom use.

      • Larry Ferlazzo's Authentic Writing Criteria in a Nutshell 1. Make 'em short to produce and do. 2. Make publishing simple and accessible. 3. Write and done and move on to the next task. 4. Make sure the publishing site has a cop. - post by tellio
    • What Percent lets you state a simple opinion
      • you need to sign up to comment, but does allow you to do a little more indepth research on issue. - post by tellio
    • Recipe Key lets you drag-and-drop items into a virtual pantry
      • Perfect for classroom recipe books. Perfect for family living activities. Students need to know about online food info. This is one of many. In fact it would make a very authentic writing to get students to gather cool, student-centric food/recipe websites together for an annotated post. - post by tellio
    • Shelfari, though, seems like a very reasonable alternative. Students can create their own virtual bookshelf and write reviews of them.
      • I use this one and find it to be excellent. You could start a new shelfari for your class, open up a new discussion, then have students discuss the book selected. After a round of discussion you could ask students to pick a top five then create a rubric in groups that would be used to evaluate the next round of writings. I know it would have to be adapted, but wouldn't this make for interesting action research as you compare first and last discussions using this method. - post by tellio
    • Library Thing is similar to Shelfari
      • Go here just to see this: - post by tellio
    • Zunal is a free and easy way for students (and teachers) to create webquests (though they might be more appropriately called Internet Scavenger Hunts).
      • Great idea in their demo for a math teacher to use writing as learning. - post by tellio
    • Travel DK, which lets you easily create your own online travel guides including writing reviews of attractions (Thanks to Diana Dell for the tip).
      • OK, you are taking a fieldtrip or a class group (Ok imagine you have the money to do this or just do it virtually). Do this guide first, then do 'reporting' while there, then do a follow up. Print the book and allow folks to buy it and buy one for the library. Documenting one's life is an old idea, but now everyone can do it. Shouldn't we show them before they make a dog's breakfast of it on MySpace or Facebook? - post by tellio
    • Students can pick a painting, or create their own artwork, and then write a story about it at  The Art of Storytelling
      • A great idea, execution is very simple, requires a quiet place for students to record. Constrained to the art in their museum, but still a great way to demo the process that multimedia production might go through: image-->script-->voice-->product-->publish. - post by tellio
    • Students both asking and answering questions at the various online Wiki-like sites like Yahoo Answers, WikiAnswers, and Wikianswers (yes, the last two are indeed different sites) are definitely examples of writing for an “authentic audience.” 
      • I can't even begin to draw out the implications for authentic writing here. Perhaps the class could keep a list of running questions that need answering at one of these sites. Allow any student to publicly add to the list, take a cellphone picture of the list, prilnt it out and allow students to work at "fallow" times of the day. My motto in any classroom: always have something cool to do. - post by tellio
    • My Hero is a site where students can write about people they view as…heroes. You can register and create a multimedia webpage about your choices, but, even better (at least, in my view), you can go to the Guestbook area and write a short piece that appears immediately (there are automatic filters to screen content, plus it’s manually screened later).
      • This site has evolved quite beautifully over the last five years into one of the most interesting project sites on the web. If you like multimedia then you might like to start the year doing a film. Check it out: - post by tellio

      BBC Memoryshare is a “place to share and explore memories.” The site has a cool-looking timeline where you can access memories that people have written — on just about anything.

      • Start you class's memory book, assign a class historian, begin to think in historical terms. The more you look, the more opportunities arise. - post by tellio

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

My Languages: Skype Interview : Social Bookmarking

  • Is tagging a cognitive activity ? Does tagging force you to reflect on categories to find the correct key word?
    Yes, but I feel that it remains quite personal too. Lately, I attended an Elluminate session on tagging for Flickr. We were asked to tag a picture and we then compared all the different words and categories suggested-fascinating... For photos the choice of categories is maybe wider but I believe that we also get the categories to fit our needs. The question is always: if I want to find this again to do… what key word do I need?
This would be a valuable icebreaker in a social networking class.

NECC 2009 Attendees | Program | Search Results Details

This is the question isn't it.  The answer is oftentimes balled up in the question. Or perhaps we already are swimming in the answer?  As Izaak Rabin once said, "If  a problem has been a problem for a long time, maybe it's not a problem.  Maybe it's a fact."  What is the fact that we are overlooking because it is hiding in plain sight?

PasturePoultry : Message: RE: [PasturePoultry] Re:Speckled Communist Americauna - Barbara and Connie

  • Tales of Strange Chickens--taken from the PasturePoultry Group on Yahoo
  • (I doubt they were Cornish Crosses.
    • A few years ago several chickens fell out of a truck hauling them to
      slaughter. They ended up living in the median of I-5 near an overpass.
      Since there was room to pull over, people started to put out food and water
      for them. They lived there happily for months. I don't know if they were
      finally picked up or got squished; the highway department wanted them gone
      because locals would slow down to look for them and they were a traffic
      hazard. And the highway department guys are locals, too, so I am guessing
      they caught them. I never saw them squished, and they were big birds when
      they grew up - Cornish crosses.

      Alice Royle

      Union Point Custom Feeds

      Brownsville, OR

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.