Saturday, September 24, 2011

Youtube!

This week's challenge was to explore Youtube. I've watched videos on Youtube before. I watched old music videos that I watched, danced, and sang to 'back in the day,' as my kids would say. I've also used Youtube to find instructional videos on many varieties of topics. In fact, I used Youtube to find out how to create my Voki or mini-me that resides on my blog.

The use of Youtube could come in handy in libraries, given proper permissions are obtained to record and share events that take place in the library for example. Maybe an author comes to the library to speak, and those who missed it could watch the video on Youtube. Or how about using it for tutorials on searching the catalog or requesting ILL materials.

I saw some awesome ways that museums for example are making use of Youtube. One such museum would be the Smithsonian's Natural History Museum. They have their own Youtube channel, as do the other Smithsonian Museums. The video that I'll share below is about the, "Race: Are We So Different," exhibition.



The exhibition referred to in this video is made up of art work from elementary to high school aged students and will be on display at the Natural History Museum until January 2012. If you're in DC in the coming months, check it out. I visited the National Mall over the summer and visited the National Museum of American History. It in itself was huge, so we never made it to the Natural History Museum.

To find out more about the exhibition, visit there Web site:
http://mnh.si.edu/exhibits/race/

Dreamweaver Experience

Learning about Dreamweaver has proven to be quite the adventure. It's certainly not as easy to use as Blogger's WYSIWYG, but I think I am coming around to understanding it a little bit better, one day at a time. Our professor offered an extra class to discuss HTML and CSS. Though in a lot of ways it felt like seeing a foreign language for the first time, it was still helpful indeed. One of the most important things I learned was how to recognize the beginning and ending of HTML code. In the past, if I ever dared view my post in the 'Edit Html' mode, I had no idea where to place my cursor to make changes. Now, I have a very good understanding of how the codes open and close. One thing that I've managed to do successfully is to create a banner for my page. Granted, I didn't do any coding whatsoever, I use Pure Silva's Banner Maker. I think it turned out pretty nice. Here's a link to it:

http://imgur.com/tHBOY

Once I've completed a presentable Web site, I will post it's URL for all to view! The unveiling will take place the weekend of October 1st.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

My Favorite Podcasts & Others

Though I've never created a podcast, I have subscribed to a few. One that I've had for the past 2 years is the Daily Audio Bible and I love it! It provides daily readings from the Old Testament, New Testament, Psalms and Proverbs.

For this week's challenge, I wanted to look for new podcasts to add to my iTunes. I began my search in the iTunes store and found one, "Grammar Girl: Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing." I was so thrilled to see this because I'd been eyeballing this book for a little while and just never had the chance to buy it. With this podcast, there are weekly segments relevant to various grammar faux pas. This week's podcast was roughly 8 minutes long and addressed irregular verbs.

I also subscribed to November Learning's Podcast. This one was of particular interest because it has been a resource that we've referenced in LIS 568 course. It discusses topics relevant to education, curriculum planning, Web literacy, critical thinking, and assessment for example. They appear to publish new podcasts almost on a monthly basis. The last one was July 2011 and addressed, "Rethinking Science Education."

The Smithsonian also has several podcasts. One that struck me first was the African Art Museum podcast. However, I was disappointed to find that there hasn't been a publisehd podcast from them since September 2010. My favorite aspect of what they offered were the book readings. They read books like, "Anansi the Spider," and "The Leopard's Drum." Which gave me an idea to do this on my own. However, with further investigation, it appears that I cannot including storytelling in my podcast, of copyright protected materials. I would need to obtain permission from the copyright holder. So I'll need to look into storytelling via podcast a bit further.

In the meantime...off to attempt my first podcast!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Stacks_Books

Stacks_Books by cartersflix
Stacks_Books, a photo by cartersflix on Flickr.

Yay! So excited to have a new computer after 7 years. My good old eMac was hanging in there with its 10.3 OS. So now that I have my new iMac I can see all of the buttons on a page and was able to post my Flickr photo.

Off to my next 2.0 Adventure...

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Exploring Flickr


I've heard of Flickr and knew that it was a place to share photos but I'd never tried it for myself. So to start, I took a trip to Lockwood Library and took 4-5 pictures with my daughter's digital camera (sure wish I had my own), hopefully inconspicuously. I took a picture of the workstation, a book cart, the book drop, and my library card. Right now, I'm going to try and see how to add one of those pictures to this blog...

Okay, so I wasn't able to post one from Flickr. I think I'll have to try on a different computer. Sharing it via Blogger was visible as an option but I couldn't click on it. At any rate, you'll find the photo I was trying to post from my Flickr account in the upper left-hand corner of this post.

The URL for this photo:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/petunia247/6130495334/

Friday, September 9, 2011

Check Out Mini Me

There's a new addition to my page. You'll find her at the top left corner. She's CeCe the Librarian! I saw something like this on another Web page a long time ago and could not for the life of me recall what it was called. I googled: '3d avatar,' 'virtual librarian,' and some other weird key words. For anyone that is interested in creating their own mini you, here's the link: http://www.voki.com/

P.S. Press play at the bottom of her box and hear her speak. Have fun!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Week #2 Reflections, Library 2.0 & Don't Make Me Think

The following from Steve Krug's, "Don't Make Me Think," is what stood out the most for me:

1) Usability matters
2) Web pages should be self-evident, obvious, and self-explanatory
3) Get rid of the question marks

The aforementioned are the thoughts that went through my mind as I set up my blog. Though in some ways I feel like my color scheme, however pretty, is super colorful and possibly a little too busy or distracting. At the same time, I wanted it to feel adventurous and I hope that I've met that goal.

The Library 2.0 reading makes me want to investigate how our local public libraries are making use of these technologies. I think the idea of merging the catalog with the library's blog is great. Having links to click on that are relevant to the materials I am searching in the catalog would further enhance my research in the particular area of interest that I might be working on.

In this chapter, it was said that, "Efficiency has displaced the sense of team," (not sure if Casey said this or Savastinuk). I agree because face to face interaction with human beings is so valuable. At the same time, digital interface is so practical, efficient and often speedy. Face to face, as discussed in this chapter requires scheduling meetings or getting to work early, or chatting at break. Instant messaging as its name implies, is instant.

However, as a user and consumer of information in the library, I enjoy seeing the faces. For instance, there are now multiple self check-out kiosks in the Audubon library (and other libraries in the area). Even at what used to be a face-to-face check-out counter. Yes, I like and appreciate being able to check out on my own. In fact, it's even fun, but I also enjoyed talking to whomever was checking me out that day. He/she might smile and uplift or encourage me, or suggest other movies that I might want to check out next time because he/she really enjoyed it. The digital interface lacks this element of personal touch.

As I learn more about these Web 2.0 tools, I'm sure I'll rally for them more and more, while appreciating the smiling faces at my library at the same time.

Friday, September 2, 2011

My Life Long Learning Habits

I like the phrase Life Long Learner because it rids my mind of the idea of the "professional student," that somehow carried with it a negative connotation. Life long learners are ever-growing, increasing in knowledge, wisdom, skill and savvy. Though I must admit, I've been a bit reluctant in increasing my knowledge when it comes to technology. I don't have a smart phone, ipad, ipod or any kind of e-reader. Last year is when I purchased my first blu-ray player, and just within the past six months or so, I finally learned how to remove my pictures from my digital camera and print them at Riteaid (though I did at least know how to transfer them to my computer). What I lack (or lacked) in tech savvy, I more than make up for in my knowledge of all things Disney or Nickelodeon! Knowing many character names from many shows, along with songs and dance moves. All this great knowledge from being a stay-at-home mom, and childcare provider to many.

This brings me back to being a Life Long Learner. I need to get beyond Dora and iCarly-quickly! I have a new goal of expanding my knowledge of all of these fantastic web 2.0 tools. I set up a blog in the past but never knew that I could change the standard design settings. Today I figured that out! I learned how to add all kinds of cool gadgets to it too (Blogger makes that super easy!).

In terms of my learning habits, I feel that I best exemplify #1, "Beginning with the end in mind." Having direction, and a plan that drives that direction makes me feel confident and prepared to take a step. Sometimes baby steps and other times grown up steps. If I stumble or fall over any obstacles, I keep the end goal in mind and persevere. When modifications are necessary due to life happening as it will, I roll with the punches, change what's necessary and keep marching.

Habit # 6, "Using technology to your advantage," is one that I need great improvement in. As I've already mentioned, in this area I am a little reluctant to embrace technology. I hope that this course and this learning adventure will show me just how useful technology is. I want to be able to share its usefulness with my family and with my students when I become a SLMS.

Lastly, I just love Habit # 7 1/2! I love to play, that's why I'm still awake playing with my blog at nearly 2AM. Sleep is very necessary, so I shall retire for the evening. I can't wait to read everyone's blogs :o)