TSETC 2010

The Tri-State Education Technology Conference was held on October 2 at New Milford High School. Several members of our staff attended the conference where the focus was on exploring new and innovative ways to implement the technology our students are already comfortable using for educational purposes.

The keynote speaker was Lisa Nielsen who shared real-life anecdotes of the risk-taking experiences she felt were necessary to do what was in the best interest of 21st students despite the protests of educational administrators stuck in the past. Passionate about educator voice and thinking "outside the ban" Ms. Nielsen blogs, promotes cell phone use for educators and students, and friending students on Facebook even though an outdated educational system tried to stop her from moving ahead. Read Lisa's blog about the conference here and search TSETC. She shares her presentation and offers a number of valuable links to interesting topics.

Here are some of the highlights of the sessions we attended:

Podcasting and Webcasting in the 21st Century Classroom presented by Raquel Williams

Podcasting can be used in any classroom! For example, in foreign language, the teacher can record lessons or assignments in a podcast and post them on a web site. The students can record homework assignments and submit them to the teacher either by uploading them or sending them as an attachment to an email.

Podcasts can be recorded using the free software Audacity. To post a podcast, the website Podomatic provides a free membership account. If Audacity is unavailable, Podomatic provides the tools to record a podcast on their site.

Another alternative is to use the website K7.net. This web-based unified messaging system channels your free voicemail directly to your e-mail. K7 provides you with a free phone number that enables you to have your voicemail messages delivered directly to your computer. You can view and listen to your messages right here on the K7 Web site if you prefer. Use this for an assignment that requires students to answer a question orally. They call the phone number provided and leave their voice message that is forwarded to you.

Webcasting is creating a video and/or audio broadcast transmitted via the Internet. This broadcast can be live or recorded. Use this to leave a lesson when you are out or record a homework assignment that the students can access at home. Or let the students create a webcast! You can obtain a free membership on Ustream.tv.

Digital Storytelling presented by Samantha Morra

Digital Storytelling is the use of video and audio tools to communicate. Ms. Morra has posted her presentation here. See some excellent examples of students' work and some instructions on how to proceed.