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Posts tagged ‘social media’

Who in government is editing Wikipedia?

(I just re-read the title to this post. It’s sounds like I’ve been watching too many conspiracy movies. But I’m gonna stick with it. It seems to fit. Feel free to rewrite it after you’re done here. Just know that we’ll know that you rewrote it. Cause we have those kind of interweb skills.)

I’ve talked quite a bit about Wikipedia and how I think it’s a good option for kids and teachers.

Some argue that because different people can edit Wikipedia entries, that those entries can’t be trusted. I would argue just the opposite . . . that because so many people can edit entries and so many people monitor changes to the entries, that the entries become more trustworthy.

I called it open source history.

Do you really know who writes your textbook? What credentials do they have? What bias do they bring to the process? What sources do they use to write their books? Who fact checks them? How do you know what influence the Texas State Board of Education played in “editing” their “entries?”

When a single person and a single group becomes the one responsible for controlling information and knowledge, we should all be concerned.

Having said that, it is important that we monitor and fact check Wikipedia entries. And that happens constantly. The good news is that we now have the option of using social media tools to do some of that monitoring for us.

Every Wikipedia article, and any revisions to that article, is tracked and monitored. If a change in an entry is made, the IP address of the computer that made the change is tracked and recorded. And for most major articles, there are Wikipedia editors that constantly update and edit entries – working to make each article as accurate and error free as possible.

So even if a change is made anonymously, that change can be tracked back to the source and if needed, that edit can be corrected.

Okay. A lot of tech nerd talk but what’s the basic idea here? Read more

Twitter in the Classroom: Green, Blue, and Black

I’m not that good at it but I still love to snow ski. My family does too. And we try to go at least once a year.

But we always run into trouble. Son wants harder slopes than the old man wants to mess with. Daughter wants steep but no bumps. Wife looks for groomed runs that let her avoid the more difficult moguls.

This is where the handy-dandy ski trail classification system becomes very useful. Green circles designate beginner level runs, blue squares equal intermediate difficulty, and black diamonds identify advanced trails.

FYI. I avoid most black diamonds. I value my knees.

But I like the system. Even on unfamiliar slopes, we all know what we’re getting into. Green. Blue. Black. Everybody can pick the level that best fits their ability and interest.

Last week, I had the opportunity to work with a great K-12 staff as they explored the possibility of using Twitter in their classrooms and as a professional development tool.

And we used the idea of Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced as a way to help teachers pick their level of engagement. Teachers new to Twitter explored the basics and advanced users felt free to began messing with things like live chats and third party apps. It worked pretty well so I figured I’d share some of those goodies here. Read more

Historians on Twitter

I love Twitter. I probably don’t use it enough or in a way that maximizes its potential. But I still love it. I also think we need to be using it as both a professional development and instructional tool.

And I just ran across Russel Tarr’s very sweet list of historians on Twitter. It’s a big list, and it’s growing every day, but it is a nice place to start if you’re looking to add to your follow list. He also has a great list of History Educators – more of a focus on classroom teachers.

And don’t forget to head back to his ActiveHistory page and all of his Class Tools like FakeBook and Fake Tweet.

“Live” streaming of 1963 CBS News JFK coverage will stream CBS News’ historic broadcast coverage of President John F. Kennedy’s assassination to mark the 50th anniversary of the shooting. The extensive online offering will feature the minute-by-minute CBS News broadcasts in real time as they were delivered during the four-day period following the assassination.’s special four-day anniversary online stream will begin at 1:38 PM ET on Friday, Nov. 22, 2013 with the first breaking network television news bulletin alerting viewers shots had been fired in Dallas. Read more

Tip of the Week: Vine, or how I learned to love history in 6 seconds

I’ll be honest. I really had no idea what Vine was until this summer. It was my college-age son, of course, who introduced me to the tool.

And I never laughed so hard.

Jake is great at telling incredibly funny stories in the six seconds of video allowed by Vine. Most of the clips he created involved me and the rest of his family. I’m pretty sure that I had nothing to do with the funny parts.

If you’re not familiar with Vine, it’s fairly simple. Vine is a mobile app that that lets you capture six seconds of video and post it online. Just as Twitter is a micro-blog of 140 characters, Vine is a micro-video of just six seconds.

Think visual Twitter and you’ve got it.

I know what you’re thinking. Six seconds? Really? But just like thousands of educators are using Twitter as part of teaching and learning, more and more teachers are finding ways to incorporate Vine into their classrooms. So what does that look like? Read more

Tip of the Week: My Top 10 Social Studies Pinterest Boards

Yes. I know. There are other social media bookmarking sites out there. There are other bookmarking sites out there that I personally like more. And there may even be other bookmarking sites that are easier to use.

I get that.

But I also know that we shouldn’t ignore Pinterest. There are some incredible resources on the Interwebs that I would have never found without my Pinterest account. For saving bookmarks, I use other tools. But for a quick way to browse lots of sites quickly, it’s hard to beat Pinterest.

if you’re not super familiar with Pinterest, the tool is a pinboard-style website that allows users to create and manage theme-based image collections called pinboards. These pinboards give users a way to organize all of the websites that they find. Because it’s visual, it’s easy to “see” the saved web sites in these collections. You can browse other users pinboards for sites, follow your favorite pinboards,  “re-pin” those sites to your own pinboard, or like the different sites.

The handy thing is that you Read more


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