Monday, 25 January 2010
Images4Education and Moodle for Gardening and Cooking: Course Update
My EVO Images4Education course is going very well and I am enjoying exploring all the new features and connecting with other participants. I now have a Flickr account and I have been learning a lot. I have also found out about all sorts of lovely sites to use to edit photos in a fun way. Big Huge Labs is an amazing tool just waiting to be played with and well, dear reader, I certainly have played to my heart's content! The following photos have been simply re-edited with different effects such as create a stamp, a magazine cover, a postcard, a film poster and so on.
How can this tool be used in class? Well, the students can create projects, promotional posters, visual prompts for poems, they can use their imagination (like I have!).
The following pictures show you some of the special effects you can create on Big Huge Labs.
The first picture below was taken yesterday by K. It shows me with one of the 5 new olive trees I bought with some birthday money from my family. It made me reflect. I don't have any children, but these 3-year-old olive trees should last for many centuries, so for me, they represent a very powerful symbol of what I will leave behind for future posterity and that is something which makes me happy. I just hope this young olive tree below will last the course! I will be writing up a blog post soon on the topic of "Olive Tree Cultivation."
I love the film poster effect and this is one I have created, starring the elusive and very mysterious film star Arabella Cascarino and her Creator. Rather cheekily, I have taken the liberty of nominating the film for 5 special and imaginary Bit's'n'Bobs, Show'n'Tell Oscar awards.
Oops! The film star is Isabella Cascarino (the sister).
Part of week 2's imaginative and challenging tasks was to write a poem based on a photo depicting your origins. The photo of the mountains is one of my favourite and I have referred to it many times in my blog, for example here. I really enjoyed this activity and I let my imagination run freely and the poem came straight from the heart.
I am now from the wilds of Abruzzo
from central Italy
I was from the cosmopolitan hub
of a medieval university city
The two forever linked
by nonna Natalina's move
from rural village
to sophisticated Oxford
The mountain of adventure beckons
enticingly amidst the cool backdrop
of ancient olive groves, centuries old
learned trees, the fruits waiting
to be picked by my fair hand
Ice-capped peaks denoting a
The valley of adventure waiting
to be explored
Virgin territory as yet untrampled by
swarms of tourists
I am off the beaten track
No postman dares venture beyond
the old ruined farmhouse
perched precariously on the hilltop
Isabella and Sofia rule the roost
Nikita and Chikita as yet unborn
Soon to be united in a glorious
mingling of all creatures great and small
This is my destiny
This is my future
This is where I am now
Interesting Links to Explore
Natasa is also taking the Images4Education course and her writing and feedback is inspiring. The poem she has written is amazing.
Carla Arena is one of my brilliant facilitators on the course and her blog is very inspiring. Her knowledge and fantastic use of Flickr is incredible and her enthusiasm is infectious.
Ana Maria from Life Feast blog is also one of the excellent co-moderatators on my course and I am learning a lot about how to exploit images from her.
Here is an interesting blog post I found on the resource-packed Box of Tricks which focuses on Using Images in the MFL (Modern Foreign Languages) Classroom.
Larry Ferlazzo has a very interesting post on "How do you use Photos in the ELL Classroom".
Just seen and will add "10 Sites for Playing with Images of Students" from Graham Stanley's excellent Digital Play blog.
Moodle for Teachers-3 Gardening and Cooking Course
I am also busy on my Moodle course. There was a weekly live Wiziq session on Saturday and I presented a Power Point presentation on behalf of my team mates on the Gardening and Cooking Moodle course. It was the first time I had done such a thing "live" and I actually enjoyed myself. The slides were a collaborative project via Google Docs and we have been organising ourselves with daily emails and weekly meetings on Skype and Google-Wave. My Team members come from Canada, USA, Canary Islands and Japan. We also use Diigo to bookmark useful links for the course that we are developing. We are now busily working and collaborating to present and showcase our future course next weekend. No rest for the wicked!
As you can see, I have been able to combine some of the new things I am learning from my Images4Education course. I am delighted to share them with you here.
I hope writing this post will inspire you to experiment with a few new tools. Are there any other Web 2.0 tools for using images that you like and that you would like to share here? I'd love to hear about them!