Easter has come and gone and nothing uneggspected happened. The wedding is over and now it’s back to work.
Most of my time has been taken up developing an assessment rubric for online eportfolios submitted for open, flexible and networked learning accreditation.
Quite tricky really, especially if one wants to ensure that the assessment matrix provides a fair degree of objectivity and flexibility in interpreting the levels of competency, quality and skill reflected in the portfolio submissions.
I have looked at numerous examples of Rubrics on the Web and elsewhere. Lots of good ideas but not quite what I want yet.
Hi ho, I will let you know what transpires (only if you are interested of course).
I’ve also been chatting to the odd local teacher now and then (not to say that teachers are actually odd) about simple, user friendly resources that are attractive to students and engage and encourage learning through basic understanding of concepts and principles in all sorts of subject areas.
I think the learning resources on and off the Web, in whatever format, need to be highly motivating through valuing the learner and providing a route to develop self esteem and confidence. Positive reinforcement seems to be the key to success.Maybe I will have found some useful sites for next month’s posting
In this posting there are a couple of projects under the auspices of JISC, one on mobile apps and the other on work based learning, Skype in the classroom, graphical dictionary,Web 2.0 guru,a dynamic periodic table,the online writing lab,internet for classrooms, PPP, a new site to watch, an educational technology resource, conferences and the odd one out.
June will soon be busting out all over . So until then, keep the students happy.
1. From JISC cetis: Mobile Web Apps, A Briefing Paper By Mark Power.
Mobile learning continues to grow and attract more attention and this article adds grist to the mill.


2.Skype in the Classroom
Skype in the classroom is a free community to help teachers everywhere use Skype to help their students learn. It’s a place for teachers to connect with each other, find partner classes and share inspiration. This is a global initiative that was created in response to the growing number of teachers using Skype in their classrooms


3.OWL Purdue online writing Lab. This site has matured into an excellent resource and one which all students should be aware of.
Extract from the site:
‘The Online Writing Lab (OWL) at Purdue University houses writing resources and instructional material, and we provide these as a free service of the Writing Lab at Purdue. Students, members of the community, and users worldwide will find information to assist with many writing projects. Teachers and trainers may use this material for in-class and out-of-class instruction’.


Explore the ‘grammar’ blog as well


4.VISUWORDS: A fascinating graphical dictionary site for learning about words , their relationships to other words, their meanings and lots more.
Extract from the site
‘Visuwords’ online graphical dictionary, Look up words to find their meanings and associations with other words and concepts. Produce diagrams reminiscent of a neural net. Learn how words associate.’


5. Another excellent project supported by the JISC stable: The Work-based Learning Maturity Toolkit.. This is a very comprehensive and well structured ‘toolkit’ and adds to the growing number of systems that enable institutions to assess and monitor their maturity in the provision of learner support and ability to deliver excellence in learning and teaching in specific areas.(WBLMT is available under a creative commons licence)
Extract from the site:
‘What is the WBL Maturity Toolkit?
This toolkit aims to help institutions, faculties, schools, departments, and programme teams to:
Better understand what “maturity” in work-based learning (WBL) looks like.
Assess their own maturity in WBL.
Improve their strategies and plans for WBL’.


6. Web 2.0 Guru: Web 2.0 resources for 21st century instruction.
A vast array of links and associated resources for almost anything you can think of. This site should keep you occupied for a while and there is bound to be something useful for you.


7. EduHound. Described as ‘your educational technology resource’, is a site which provides numerous links to a wide range of educational resources in a number of discipline areas The majority of links links are to US material. However there are plenty of links to other useful resources. Very comprehensive site. You coiled spend a long time here.


8.Internet4classrooms has been around since 2000 and continues to expand and increase its wide range of resources. It caters for up to eighth grade[approx. 13 -14yrs] I think many of the resources would be useful for those even older students who struggle with a variety of concepts, processes and procedures.
Have a look at 8th Grade Interactive Math Skill Builders as an example of the range of resources that are associated with the discipline. Others have a similar range. An excellent site. Well worth bookmarking.


Eighth grade resources:


9. Dynamic Periodic table
There have been several of this type of site developed over recent years. This is one more to help the students understanding the elements. Quite nicely done.


10. Push Pop Press: Something to keep an eye on as the potential for educational content and interactive resources is immense (I think ) especially in the world of mobile learning.


Key Conferences
11.1 ascilite 2011, Changing demands, changing directions will be held at Wrest Point Casino, Hobart, Tasmania Australia, 4-7 December 2011.
ascilite 2011 has three sub-themes:
Equity of experience
Evidence-based practice
For more information about ascilite 2011 visit the website at:


11.2 ALT-C 2011. Thriving in a colder and more challenging climate.
The 18th international conference of the Association for Learning Technology will be held at the University of Leeds, UK, 6-8 September 2011.
Key dates
Presenters’ registration deadline 27 June 2011
Earlybird registration deadline 4 July 2011
Registrations close on 12 August 2011
Full details from:


ALT-C is always worth attending, especially if you want to be really aware of challenges, changes, trends and success stories about technology supported education
11. 3 Inaugural International Conference on eLearning Futures 2011: Unitec Institute of Technology. Auckland New Zealand
Full details can be found at :


12. NZ happenings
Shar-E-fest 2011 will be held in Hamilton on July 11- 12th,

Prof Thom Reeves

from the University of Georgia, Atlanta will be the keynote presenter and workshop facilitator.
Many thanks to Ascilite for being a contributing sponsor again this year.
Second call for submissions was made in April
To make a submission go to:


1. Use Presentation Guide Tab to review presentation types.
2. Use Submit Presentation tab to submit abstract (NB: you will be prompted to create a new account) If you had an account from last year’s Shar-E-Fest the details will be the same.
Final Call for submissions in June.
Mark the dates in your diary AND aim to be there. Last year was an unqualified success
GO to the Website for more information and create an account


13. The odd one out: An interactive 3D solar system. Just go there and be prepared to be amazed and to learn lots.


Richard Elliott
The Eternal Macademic
New Zealand

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