Wednesday, April 18, 2007

April 2007 Educational Technology News

There are many exciting events and news items in the area of Educational Technology this month.

Table of Contents
  1. Educational Technology Leadership Cadre Meetings
  2. LAUSD Updates
  3. InfoTech 2007
  4. New Podcasts
  5. Professional Development
  6. Technology Gems
Educational Technology Leadership Cadre Meetings
Our upcoming meeting on Thursday, April 19th at Bell High School, from 3:45 to 5:15 promises to be an exciting learning experience. Thanks to Michiko Sakimoto and Brian Defer of Bell HS for sharing their beautiful lab with us for our meeting.
Here's the agenda:
3:45 - 4:00 News and Events
4:00 - 4:30 Maps 101 from LAUSD's Digital Library by Jennifer BeCotte from Nystrom Maps
Jennifer has some exciting features of Maps 101 that most of us don't even know about. Come learn how to use this valuable tool in the classroom.
4:30 - 4:45 Digital Library - Learn about the wealth of quality tools that teachers and students can use in the classroom.
4:45 - 5:00 Google Earth - A mere 15 minutes with Google Earth will not be enough to show all of the amazing features of Google Earth in education, but at least you can begin to learn how to use this outstanding tool in the classroom.
5:00 - 5:15 Discussion - Come join in our discussion about educational technology. It will be fun and lively, as usual.

Bell High School
4328 Bell Ave.
Bell, CA 90201

Room S-4

Our final meeting for the year will be on Thursday, May 17th, at South East High School. We hope you will all be able to attend our meeting.

LAUSD Updates
E-Pals Migration
As you probably know, all LAUSD employees will be moving from e-pals to the exchange before July 2007. You will need to move all of the email you want to save to your inbox, because your inbox will be the only part of your mail that will be migrated. For more details and a timeline of the migration process, please visit:

New Photo Information Release Form for persons over the age of 18. Please find it on the AUP link on the bottom of each LAUSD page.

InfoTech 2007

LAUSD's InfoTech Conference will take place this Saturday from 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 at the Los Angeles Convention Center, in concert with the LAUSD Annual Parent Summit. Please register and attend this outstanding conference, where you can learn about new ways to use technology in the classroom from students and teachers showcasing their projects, engage in Roundtable Discussions, attend quality workshops, talk to vendors, and join in a great day of learning.

Joan Dooley and her team of students from Bell High School, will be competing with 7 other teams from across the district in the high school digital storytelling competition. Joan and her students have been working long hours after school and on Saturdays to prepare for this competition. Students will create a 5 minute digital story on-site about how technology helps them to achieve success while also telling the story of InfoTech. Go Team!

Local District 6 also has four finalists in the Middle School and Elementary School Student Competition:
  • Middle School
    South Gate Middle School
    Teachers: Mike Albert and James Valadez
  • Elementary School
    San Miguel Elementary
    Teachers: Ralph Duran and Pete Keuper
Outstanding! Congratulations to all our teachers and students who entered the student competition. Come to InfoTech to see their projects and learn who the Elementary and Middle School winners are!

I would like to thank all the teachers and students from Local District 6 who will be showcasing their work at Infotech this year. We are fortunate to have such an outstanding group of dedicated teachers and students!
Congratulations to the following teachers and their students who will be showcasing their projects at InfoTech:

Elementary School
San Miguel Ave. Elementary School
Carlos Gomez - The Save Water Crew - Water Saving Ideas from 4th Graders
Linda Myring - Rosa Parks Reader's Theater - Audio Podcast
Ralph Duran - Puma Anglers Project
Pete Keuper - Interactive PowerPoint Presentations

Middle School:
Gage Middle School
Beth Billet - SmartBoard, Smart Activities, Smarter Students
David Billet - Digital Video
South East Middle School
Elvia Apodaca - NASA Simulation
Cynthia Walker - Endangered Species
South Gate Middle School
Mike Albert - PSA's in 8th Grade History
Xiomara Benitez - Effects of Chocolate on Humans and Which Fertilizer is Best
Sandra Bravo - The Digital Outdoors
Nancy Chau - My Dream Car Poster
Milessa Filet - SpyCast from Ancient Egypt
Mr. Moraila - My Dream Car Description
James Valadez - Trip to the Desert
Silvio Vidal - Constitution Multimedia Presentation
Edie Walker - Earth Science and PowerPoint

High School
Bell High School
Joan Dooley - Literacy-Based Digtial Imaging
South East High School
Donn Cottom - CyberEnglish and e-Portfolios
Joseph Gresko - Geometry Theorems in Everyday School Life

We hope to see you at InfoTech this Saturday. Please join us!

New Podcasts!
There are two new projects that are fantastic!

Ellen Ochoa Learning Center and Bryson Elementary are engaging in a collaborative literature circle talk using video-conferencing, podcasting, and wikis to share and collaborate on their conversation about the book, the Outsiders, by S. E. Hinton. Subscribe to their podcast at: They already have the first meeting published as a podcast. Cristian Markovich, the technology person in support of the project at Ellen Ochoa, says that with each meeting between the schools, the quality and depth of the conversation increases. They also use a wiki for resources and to extend the discussion. Thanks to all the teachers and administrators involved in such a unique project that allows students to connect and collaborate through authentic learning opportunities.

Susan Ghotra, who works at a high school in Carson, has her students create audio public service announcements (PSA's) about drugs in their health education class. Subscribe to her podcast in iTunes. Students are engaged in creating content from what they are learning. Great work!

Professional Development
    I'm pleased to announce that I will be offering two workshops through UPDATE in May. I hope you can attend one or both!

    Publishing with Purpose through Podcasting
    using iLife ‘06
    Delivery: Face to Face
    Number: 55.21.621
    Dates: May 4, 11, 14, 18, 21
    Time: 3:45 - 6:45
    Location: San Miguel Ave. Elementary - Room 19
    Salary Points: 1

    Learning & Teaching with the Read/Write Web

    Delivery: Online (with initial and final face to face meeting)
    Number: 55.21.632
    Dates: Face to Face meetings: May 7 and June 18 (4 p.m. - 8 p.m.)
    Online will be the 6 weeks in between the above dates
    Location for Face to Face classes - Local District 6 3rd Floor Conf. Room
    Salary Points: 2

    Register for these and other quality UPDATE courses, both online and face-to-face, at the Learning Zone. You will need to sign in with your Single Sign-On Account.

  • LAUSD Summer Science K-3 Institute
    Location: Teach the Teacher Collaborative in Ojai, CA
    Dates: July 15 - 20
    Develop technology integrated science lessons for practical and immediate use in classrooms. Have an opportunity to update technology skills and learn innovative ways to engage students with technology.

    This is a wonderful opportunity to relax and enjoy learning. For more information, download the flyer. Spaces will fill soon for this very popular and long awaited opportunity for K-3 teachers.

  • LACOE (Los Angeles County Office of Education)
    There are quality workshops offered through LACOE. In particular, this summer, there will be an OCR and Technology workshop with Mathew Needleman, and a Digital Storytelling Workshop from the Center for Digital Storytelling. The cost for the 3 day OCR workshop is $50 and includes a copy of Clay Animation from Tech4Learning. The Digital Storytelling 3 day workshop is $495, but the workshop is top quality (something you might want to include in a grant request).

  • Apple Workshop at South Gate Middle School
    On Thursday, May 3rd, Apple's Dave Douglas will conduct a workshop on the Interoperability of Mac and Windows on an Intel Mac. It will take place at South Gate Middle School at 3:45. Details and registration information will be announced soon.

  • Google Teacher Academy
    There's still time to apply for the Google Teacher Academy. The deadline for the application is Monday, April 23rd. This is a great opportunity to learn about Google's tools for education. A short, one minute video needs to be submitted as part of the application process.

  • Microsoft's U.S. Innovative Teacher Forum
    The 2007 U.S. Innovative Teachers Forum will recognize and reward learning teams practicing the elements of 21st century learning in their own professional learning and then incorporating these skills into the student learning environment. Application deadline: July 11, 2007
Technology Gems
  • Google Earth and the Holocaust Museum on the Crisis on Darfur
    In collaboration with Google Earth, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum has brought together compelling visual evidence of the destruction in Darfur.
    Download Google Earth and click on Global Awareness in the Layers section to see the devastation and destruction taking place from the genocide in Darfur.
    As I heard on the ABC news the other day, genocide is more successful when it is done without notice. With the new global awareness that Google Earth is making available, perhaps we can begin to come together to do something about it.
    Google Earth has amazing potential for the classroom. Educators and others are creating wonderful learning opportunities using this tool. Check the resources from District 6's account, and those of David Jakes and Wesley Fryer for great ideas on how to use this tool in the classroom.
  • TeacherTube
    A new place for educators to upload and share educational videos. Pay Attention is a compelling video featured on Teacher Tube.
  • Ning and School 2.0
    Ning is a new social networking tool, similar in some ways to MySpace. Many educators are now using it to learn and collaborate in a social space. Join School2.0 and Classroom2.0, especially designed for educators, to learn with others about using new tools for learning. If you join the space, add me as a friend. :-)
Contact Information
Janice Stearns
ITAF, LAUSD Local District 6, Office of Instruction
Phone: (323)278-4903
E-mail: janice.stearns (at)

Paul Burns
ITAF, Instructional Technology Branch, in support of Local District 6
Phone: (213)219-0836
E-mail: paulburns (at)

LAUSD Charge:
To fundamentally improve the interaction between the teacher and the student to create critical thinkers prepared to participate in a diverse and complex society.

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