Oui, Oui, Oui, C’est presque fini…

For the final project I worked with French teacher Hannah Kingsley and my tech coordinator friend in Florida, Breyn Fish.  Hannah plans to teach this unit in the Spring and I will help integrate the technology.  My friend Breyn will share out this unit with the Foreign Language teachers at her school.  I speak French so I am excited that I get to integrate technology into a French class.  Here is my favorite french clip on YouTube.  Thank you Hannah for showing me this. Hannah’s original plan was to have student make travel brochures of french speaking regions.  I suggested that we have the students do travel websites to make it more techy.  There are tons of resources on the web for students to use to make their own “free” websites.  Some of my favorite tools are Weebly and Google sites.  But seriously, there are tons of tools out there.  Click here for some more.  I like students to try out different tools when doing the same project; not only does this allow for project diversity, students can help you find the best tools out there. In our unit, students work collaboratively in groups to create a website that has information and images that are cited properly.  We pose the question “Why should you cite your sources when using pictures from the Internet?”  Attributing the creator is a big 21st century issue that involves both the law and morality.  Like I’ve said before it’s just not cool to steal other people’s work and pass it off as your own. The unit also has students working collaboratively to gather resources that are posted to a Diigo group.  For more information on Diigo check out my last post, the Diigo Ate my Baby.   Breyn suggested that the kids also save photo resources this way, so student can attribute them properly when creating the website. At the end of this unit, students will reflect upon their work in their E-Portfolio.  We would ask them to write what worked well and what we should improve in the lesson.  From their reflections and our experience, we can further tweak the unit. As I end this final post for the year, I want to say Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all my readers and Dana, our wonderful instructor.  Becoming a mom, doing COETAIL to get my masters, going back to work, and recently becoming and APD training has been a challenge, but I’ve learned a lot and got to work with so many wonderful teachers at my school that are doing COETAIL too.  See you in the New Year.  Sri Lanka here I come!!!!!


What the heck is Fair Use?

I’ve been a teacher for over ten years and the confusion over copyrighted materials is still a frustration for me and most of my colleuges.  So what are the rules, what media can we use, how do we give credit and what the heck is Fair Use.  And finally, do all this rules still apply when teaching abroad in Asia??

I found this video a while ago and I love how it explains copyright law and fair use using Disney clips.  It’s such a great use of Fair Use itself because it is not only teaches but it also uses parody.

Since copyright law has such a big grey area, it’s really hard to teach kids what exactly they can do and what they can’t.  It comes down to common sense and also showing them resources they can use without running into problems.  By the way, my favorite site for getting royalty-free pictures is MorgueFile.

I also think morality should be discussed when talking about using other work whether you are in the US or abroad.  It’s just not cool to steal other people’s work without giving them credit, this is especially the case when you are planning to make money off of their work.  Here are some guidelines for using copyrighted material; and when to ask for the publisher’s permission.  In school, most uses of copyrighted material fall under fair use because it is used for teaching.  Students still however should learn how to credit author’s properly.

So how do you cite online sources properly?  Here is a great page from Creative Commons on practices for attribution.  Also, this Addon to your browser http://openattribute.com/ helps you attribute creative commons media correctly.


my picture for FAIR Use from Morguefile so I don’t even have to site it


Photo credit for header: http://synergiseducation.com/blog/creative-commons/