*DISCLAIMER: I’ve hesitated to share this resource because of the advertising and economics tied to it. I have given it a quick test and think that all of that stuff remains invisible. I’m sharing this resource because, in the right context, I see true potential in its integration with teaching and learning.
Have you seen Squidoo? I would roughly describe it as a means of mashing up information from a variety of resources into a lens (as in the eye of a giant squid; fancy word for webpage). This is accomplished through customization and pulling together a good number of RSS feeds, favorites, bookmarks, page rankings/voting, etc. Lenses are ranked, money is given to daily winners, etc.* You can actually earn money for charity or for yourself just by using the service.* I have browsed through many of the existing lenses and been impressed by their quality. I am guessing that the whole free market competition model encourages quality effort as those with lenses with the highest use and approval are rewarded. Most of the ones I reviewed were by doctors, therapists, professors, etc. and all seemed well-credentialed. It is likely that you will find some lenses that you can use in your own classroom.
I haven’t completely made up my mind about what I think of Squidoo (I found it very, very late last night) but it has certainly given me some things to consider. Ideas for integrating it with learning and instruction have flooded my mind. In the right context it would be an interesting tool for teachers and learners to use for webquests, research, scavenger hunts, presentations, cooperative learning, online classes, a Web 2.0 activity, etc. Additional ideas and strategies are very end of this post.
There is also a section called Hey Monkey Brain where students can pick, research and debate a topic. Again, in the right context this feature has several positive educational implications.
I joined and threw together my own lens on the topic of educational technology. Take a look…
- My Squidoo Profile: http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/clifsnotes
- My Ed Tech Lens: http://www.squidoo.com/clifsnotes
You can setup your own free account using here.
I thought it might be helpful to all of us if we brainstormed ways to integrate the use of Squidoo with teaching and learning. Here are some of the ideas (classes, lesson topics, activities) that came to me.
- Writing and editing
- Information design
- Current events
- Math/ science/ health news and research
- Travel planning/ virtual field trip scenarios
- Student designed and developed webquests
- Homework helper
- Tips for parents
- Book reviews
- Debate/ critical thinking/ persuasive writing
- Service learning/ moral education
- Instructional design/ lesson planning
- Online/ web-enhanced learning
- Focus on composers, painters, or sculptors
- Communicate information and resources to teachers about particular special needsMuch of the above can be modified for use in foreign language classes