Tech Tools Showcase 2010!

Exploring emergent technologies that can build community, transform teaching, and inspire learning.


NAEYC 2010 Annual Conference Presentation:

(Thursday, November 4, Anaheim CA)

Mark Bailey: Professor, Pacific University, Oregon. Director Pacific University Child Learning and Development Center. baileym@pacificu.edu
Bonnie Blagojevic: Research Associate, the University of Maine Center for Community Inclusion & Disability Studies (UCEDD), bonnie.blagojevic@umit.maine.edu:
Diane Bales: Associate Professor and Human Development Specialist, Cooperative Extension,The University of Georgia, dbales@uga.edu
Warren Buckleitner: Editor, Children's Technology Review

We are members of the National Association for the Education of Young Children Technology and Young Children Interest Forum. Learn more about how you can get involved in our online community and projects! Visit the Technology and Young Children website today.

In this exciting session we will demonstrate a range of innovative emergent technologies, and help you experience the variety of ways they can support your work and your students’ learning. Collaborative-tools, Web-based applications, hand-held devices, and student-empowering computing; these new technologies are transforming the way people are learning and communicating. Come be inspired to try these tools, learn how to get started, and how they can help you in your work and life.Let's start exploring!

Mark Bailey - Using Technological Tools to Support Literacy and Community Building:
I serve as a professor in the College of Education at Pacific University in Oregon. As DIrector of the University Child Learning and Development Center, I oversee a school I created, a 60 student preschool and kindergarten program called the Early Learning Community . I also collaborated to develop the Oregon Technology in Education Network , a consortium of private university education faculty exploring the use of technology to support learning K-16. Come visit my homepage. View my keynote presentation without the audio clips.

The focus of my portion of the presentation is on Supporting Literacy Using Digital Tools.
I will start by focusing on a cluster of tools, beginning with Blogs in early childhood.
Here is an excellent video on what a blog is - http://www.commoncraft.com/blogs. I have selected some Kindergarten blogs based on the different elements they contain, as well as their ability to represent student work. As you explore them, notice the variety of special way they use images, video sound and other representations of student work.
Early Learning Community Blogs - http://fg.ed.pacificu.edu/elc/Site/Classroom_Blogs.html
Mr Kindergarten - http://misterkindergarten.blogspot.com/
Ms. Rose's Kindergarten Blog - http://www.mykindergartenfriends.com/
Manaia New Zealand - http://manaiakindergarten.blogspot.com/

To start blogging I would recommend you visit the following three sites to Learn more.
Learning and Leading - Article on Blogging
Learning To Blog - Kim Cofino
Blogging It’s Elementary - A Webquest for Students

Next I will take you to an engaging program that will allow students to write online stories, as well as collaborate with others across the Web to co-write these creations. This is calledStorybird and it is referred to as a collaborative literacy tool. Authors combine preloaded images provided by the site and text that they write into a story that is visually quite striking. It is the collaborative element of the tool that is the most interesting and as such it is a classic web 2.0 tool. You can read about their work on this tool on the Storybird Blog
To read the story I presented today "The Boy Who Wanted Monkeys" go to http://storybird.com/books/the-boy-who-wanted-monkeys/.

Third is an interesting Geosharing tool called Mapskip http://www.mapskip.com/ This is Browser-based Java powered tool that allows students to post stories, pictures and sounds about places and events in the world. Using a zoomable map as the interface, students can explore the world of posted information or add their own links. This application is useful for building geography skills, for labeling, describing and telling stories about the world. While it resonates with a place based approach to education, it also fosters a multicultural sensitivity to peoples connection with their world. Here is a link to the mapskip blog http://www.mapskip.com/blog/index.php

A fascinating new web-based approach to visual storymaking with children is Wayang Authoring. It allows children to compose stories and enact them with digital figures, record the motions, and then replay the actions as a video. Designed to foster cultural understanding, this tool is useful for enhancing imagination and self expression.
(here is a link to the first prototype http://dimeb.informatik.uni-bremen.de/wahju/prototype/1.0/) (2nd prototype http://dimeb.informatik.uni-bremen.de/wahju/prototype/2.0/)
View the composing video at http://wayangauthoring.wordpress.com View an article by the author about this tool http://www.internetworkingindonesia.org/Vol1-No1-Spring2009/IIJ-Vol1-No1-Widjajanto.pdf

Portable computing in the form of the iPad is a new and powerful format for creating and learning. There are so many excellent new applications that utilize children's natural desire and proclivity to explore and create. Applications can be downloaded for free or for a minimal amount through itunes. One of the hot new books that I enjoy is the tale of peter rabbit. Don't forget to visit the iPad idea page at http://ecetech.wikispaces.com/iPad+Idea+Space
Storykit is an app for the iPad and it is considered by its creators to be a tool for intergenerational mobile storytelling. Stories are created through audio recording, photographing, drawing or writing on the iphone and then these elements are put together into a story. Stories can then be sent to a secure webpage where you can invite others to view. Here is a link to an interesting paper about Storykit as well as a link to Ben Bederson's Blog.

Finally I ended my presentation mentioning speech to text and the power it will add to ECE when it is perfected. The main tool for this is dragon http://www.nuance.com/dragon/index.htm This also works on a mac as Macspeech As I noted this tool will be able to facilitate the connection between ideas word and text, between ideas and writing, encourages the use of expanded vocabulary, empowers students to tell the full stories that they envision and more. The issue at this point is that it is not yet fully functional.

In summary, Using digital tools to support literacy should be used as we would any other ECE tools, to build on traditional activities. These tools should support not supplant other more manipulative tools. Engage the social context of learning, extending students' lives in meaningful ways, support new literacies and empower students in multiple ways.
Don't be afraid to try new tools!


Warren Buckleitner- I am the Editor of Children's Technology Review, where I look at and list technology products for young children. My theory is that we can move the field along by providing high quality reviews and news of the products. I'm working on a book on using technology to enhance early childhood settings. Here's what has me buzzing right now:


  • Apps, Apps, Apps (and more Apps)
  • Rethinking AAP's "Screen Time."
  • Making a "Taxonomy of Touch."
  • iPads and babies, Montessori
  • The new iPod Touch & FaceTime
  • Kinect’s Skeletal Mapping
  • YouTube EDU
  • I am actively collecting best practice at warren@childrenstech.com



Diane Bales - Collaborating with College Students to Learn about Technology and Young Children
I am an associate professor of Child and Family Development at The University of Georgia, as well as an early childhood specialist with UGA Cooperative Extension. I am using technology tools to help undergraduate students in teacher preparation programs see the ways that technology can support young children's development. We have been using technology in early childhood through the Creative Activities for Young Children class. Most students are pre-service teachers of children birth through grade 5, or students studying child life in order to work with young children and families in hospital settings.

For three years now, I have introduced my students to Diigo, a web-based tool for bookmarking, annotating, and sharing websites. I'll share a brief introduction to Diigo's features - including bookmarking, sticky notes, and sharing links with a group. (To learn more, check out a YouTube video about Diigo and a tour of Diigo features.) I'll also highlight the ECETECH group on Diigo, where early childhood professionals from around the country are building a growing collection of links related to technology and young children. I'll share a few lessons we've learned from using Diigo.

During Fall 2010, my students have been creating activity plans for young children using various forms of technology. Here are a few examples of technologies students are using that could support young children's creativity. (These technologies are also bookmarked in the ECETECH group on Diigo.)

Bonnie Blagojevic - an info lover's toolbelt- quest for the "working smarter" workflow
Currently, I am working as a Research Associate at The University of Maine Center for Community Inclusion & Disability Studies providing tech integration support for " Early Literacy for Every Child" an Early Reading First project. I am actively involved with the NAEYC Technology & Young Children Interest Forum- all of you are invited to learn more about our Interest Forum and get involved with our projects. As an Apple Distinguished Educator (Class of 2007), I am involved with educational discussions, such as how Challenge Based Learning can benefit children. I learn a great deal about technology from being part of various online communities/social networks.

How can we use technology most effectively to get things accomplished, find, manage, and share information and keep track of emerging trends? I am always wondering what "workflow" will help (For example, a good system to take photos, manage them, and use them to create/publish a range of products. Always looking for tricks and pathways that can save time.) With so much information, so little time, what tools are available to help us tap and use information efficiently? Here are some of the tools I have found useful:

Find information:
Google alerts- My current Google alerts search queries are for preschool technology, preschool ipad. Alerts are delivered by email that contain these words, under titles News, Blog, Web. Search term suggestions can be found in the Tips section of the Getting Started Guide.
Google Scholar To find out about research on a particular topic, I can search Google Scholar. I also use Google Scholar Library Links. In the Preferences section of Google Scholar, in the LIbrary Links section, I can select UMaine and in many cases, can access the full text version of the document needed.
Online communities and social networking: listserv discussions (ECETECH-L, ADE), on Twitter I often follow K-12 tech educators.
Online/ digital publications: Children's Technology Review, eSchool News, Tech & Learning NY Times Technology section, some are free, some subscription.
Subscribing to blogs of interest. For example, moms with appsFree Technology For Teachers
Youtube tutorials- great for "seeing" how things work, lots of tutorials on using tools. For example, for Evernote...

Manage information:
-Evernote/searchable and "synchs" with devices, can take photos, clip from websites, record audio, etc., then easily search for/retrieve these notes later. (cloud computing)
-Diigo-a shared collection of websites on a particular topic. Actively bookmark to a couple of groups and "follow" others.
Google Readerweb-based aggregator, to make it easier to review favorites. To learn more, can view Youtube tutorials about Google Reader...
*Worthwhile to take time and learn more about your web browsers system for bookmarking, such as Firefox bookmarks toolbar tutorials .

Share/publish:
Share good information through publishing it so others/children can benefit. (Check out Dean Shareski's pre-conference keynote presentation for the 2010 K12Online Conference, "Sharing: The Moral Imperative")
Technology & Young Children Interest Forum website.(you can help!!!) Can use Google Sites, to create a web site.
-Wiki (ECTECH-L), current interest; iPad Idea Space, iPad use with young children, workshop "going green" handout replacement; "Making Social Networking Tools Work for Your Organization"
-Blogs; Maria Knee's The KinderKids' Blog, Wes Fryer's "Moving at the Speed of Creativity", Will Richardson's weblogg-ed

Very important- find a tool of interest, and try it out! What are your favorites? We would like to know!

Tech Fun Thursday Continues!!! Join us for tech fun all day long...
12:30 - 1:30 "How To" Session: Getting Started with Wikis and Voice Thread
3-5 Meet Tech & YC Interest Forum members for "appy hour" and to share other tech "tidbits" at the Interest Forum Cafe area
5:30-7 Tech & YC Interest Forum Annual Meeting Hilton Anaheim 777 Convention Way, Anaheim, CA 92802 Mezzanine #8