Website smorgasbord

My plan this evening was to write a beautifully coherent post about many of the websites, tools, and strategies that I’ve heard about at Internet Schools West the last two days.   But just as I was starting to write, there was an earthquake here in Monterey, so I had to leave the room and sit downstairs for awhile. 

So…it’s a couple of hours later, and all is now calm, but to distract myself, I’m going to post some websites that I learned about today, in no certain order.  (I’m not even going to go into the fact that I was logged onto twitter, and that’s how I left a message for my husband that there had been an earthquake, because A  T & T phones went down here for bit, nor that others on Twitter from elsewhere in California were quickly exchanging information, while the local tv channel here kept on showing Charlie Brown.)

So now that I haven’t mentioned all that, onto the web tour–

Similar to the School Library 2.0, the California School Library association now has a self-guided web tour for teachers, to be explored over several weeks, at their Classroom Learning 2.0 site.  A great way to get teachers started with web 2.0.

Podscope allows you to search podcasts by the words spoken in them.

Gaggle has free email accounts for students that teachers can supervise.

From Gary Price, who writes Resource Shelf–

Reuters uses metacarta to map news headlines.

For free online books, he suggests you check out the Online Books Page.

For an incredible number of news feeds from around the world, check out NewsNow.  Click on “regions” on the toolbar to the left to get news feeds from international sources.

Newspaper Archive will give free accounts to teachers for back issues of newspapers going back at least 100 years.

And finally, to make podcasting even easier for your users, phonecasting allows you to submit a url of a podcast, and it gives you a phone number to put on your website.  When users dial the number, they automatically hear the podcast!  If you are trying to get teachers interested in listening to podcasts, there are many already posted, that you can just dial in and listen to.

Another interesting thread during the conference which I would like to explore was about remembering our customers.   Lee Rainey reminded us that only 8% of technology users (according to the Pew Internet Survey) are what he calls “omnivores.”   And up to 50% of users would rather not be using technology very much.   I’m going to explore this more later, but it is a good reminder to select tools and web applications that are going to be helpful, significant, and user friendly for your audience.

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