Wednesday, April 21, 2010

May 2010 News

And the winners are....

Every April, Nebraska educators are encouraged to teach Internet Safety.  ESU's across the state have a contest in which students can participate. Even though the only award for winning this contest is having a name printed in a newsletter, we believe the process helps students learn the benefits and risks associated with online profiles. Each year we get a handful of entries at different grade levels. Entries range from elementary posters to high school videos warning others about the dangers of using the Internet inappropriately. While visiting a local school and discussing this with another teacher, I came upon a wall full of posters students created about online safety. The wall was lined with drawings and messages to be safe while online. This teacher told me they used this as an art project. So, not only was there a curriculum tie to this project, but also meaning in the content. What a great story! As I looked over these posters, I could not help asking, "How do you decide on which one to send to the ESU?" They were all so very well done. 

And, the winners from ESU 4 the K-4 poster contest: Elizabeth from Johnson Brock, sponsor Jane Wenzl; in the 5-8 category: for audio public service announcement - Tyler from Pawnee City with sponsor Lori Gyhra, and for the poster contest - Makayla from Johnson-Brock with sponsor Ryan Walker; in the 9-12 video public service announcement - Tyler and Cole from Johnson-Brock with Tera Stutheit as sponsor. Although I am allowed only to pick one winner from each category, I believe every one who participated is a winner.

I would personally like to thank all those that participated. Schools participating this year included Sterling, Johnson-Brock, and Pawnee City. The winning entries from ESU 4 were sent on to the state contest, and the winners from the state contest can be found at:

If you did not choose to participate in the contest this year, I would urge you to do so in the future. The winning entries can be found on my podcast at Click on the "Technology" link, then click on the bottom to check out my podcast.

On another note, the NETA (Nebraska Educational Technology Association) conference should still be fresh in the minds of those who attended that outstanding event. At that conference, many  ideas are shared about how different technologies can be applied in the classroom. I would encourage all of you, even if you were not able to attend NETA, to start thinking about how technology can impact your classroom next fall. There are workshops held at the ESU this summer that you may benefit from attending. If there is something specific you would like to implement, but don't know how, let us know. We would enjoy the opportunity to visit with you.  Don't be afraid to do something different. That is the motto that the Apple Computer Corporation lives by - "Think Differently!"

Have a great summer. I hope to see many of you at our summer workshops.

Website of the month: Readability - Having trouble reading online articles due to ads and clip art? Readability is a simple tool that makes reading on the web more enjoyable by removing the clutter around what you're reading. Also works well for students who have trouble reading online articles due to visual impairments.