(I love this word cloud)
Although I continue to invent and publish a new word every day for the #Nerdlution (round 2), that initiative was inspired by my students’ work around invented language (as part of our study of the origins of the English Language). The other day, they used our wiki site to begin adding a word of their own (and a podcast of their word) to a 9-year project to create an online dictionary of invented words. I’ll share that out some other day. For now, check out this prezi with a few words and I have embedded the podcasts of their voices right into the prezi (just click the play button).
This is an enticingly thoughtful interview about ways to approach constructivist learning and using digital media for creative means, from the views of Mark Surman, of the Mozilla Foundation. It’s a perfect companion to Digital Learning Day.
Peace (in the sharing),
My co-teacher wandered in and saw Lincoln’s Grave Robbers on my desk. He picked it up, “Is this fiction?” and when I replied, “It’s all true,” he looked closer at it. Such is the tale that writer Steve Sheinken digs up and tells in this book, and it is a crime story of stealing the bones of Abe Lincoln that is almost too strange to be true.
The story, from the late 1800s, is of counterfeit operations and jail time, and a noted crime boss who wants his best engraver freed from jail so that he can keep making fake money. The plan is to steal Lincoln’s bones and ransom them back to the government in return for the jailed companion to be set free. Needless to say, things go awry, and Sheinken gives a nice sense of place and history, including old photographs and drawings to bring the reader into the time and place.
I admit: I don’t always like Sheinken’s writing style, but I can’t put my finger on what it is. It doesn’t flow for me. But he certainly has an eye for historical stories (Bomb was fascinating, too, although the writing didn’t always work for me there, either) and storytelling presence. I really love how he uses primary documents to help tell his stories, and I suspect lots of teachers could turn to Sheinken’s books as examples of non-fiction writing that packs a literary punch while still remaining fairly true to the historical record.
The crook never did get Lincoln’s body but they certainly tried. In a time when news moved slow, a core group of supporters of Lincoln’s memory remained vigilant and ensured that the physical legacy of Lincoln would be free of a robbery attempt that still baffles the imagination.
Peace (in the bones of history),
As Digital Learning Day approaches, the folks at Educator Innovator have a suggestion that we and/or our students use Prezi to tell a digital story. I decided to give it a try, particularly since I have not yet used the audio upload option at Prezi before. It seemed ripe for a poem of some sort, and then I was watching a #walkmyworld video by Molly called I is We about her identity and digital spaces, and so I composed a response called You is Us.
See what you think. The “play” button on the lower left (once you start the prezi) will lead you through the poem, with audio loading automatically and the poem advancing automatically.
Peace (in the poem),