Thursday, December 9, 2010

Animated Text Creator - Wondersay

Just learned about Wondersay - a simple tool for creating animated text displays.

made on Wondersay - Animate text with style

You can copy the embed code and use it on your blog (like I did above), wiki, or Glogster.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Transform to Reform

I've read a few blogs and done much thinking on what I had to contribute to "Blogging for Real Reform". I began to reform my teaching style back in 2004 after attending NECC in my hometown of New Orleans. I was definitely a "newbie" to the Web 2.0 tools being discussed and to the concept of being a 21st century educator.

I attended sessions at NECC and was totally in awe of the language being spoken. Words like blogs, wikis, podcasts, Nings, Moodle, and more were swirling around in every room and in every gathering. The excited voices were speaking of things I knew nothing about, but I loved how animated the conversations were. I knew I wanted to be a part of it all. From those few glorious days in the summer of 2004, I have been on a personal journey to transform into an innovative educator and therefore reform my teaching methods.

I am in my 35th year of teaching and I teach lessons in a completely different way than I did before 2004. I started taking on the responsibility of my own professional development which began by reading blogs and slowly evolved into building a personal learning network (PLN) that aids my learning everyday. I joined Nings like Classroom 2.0 and started attending online webinars. I read professional journals and books and even enrolled in an educational technology leadership Master's program at a local university.

Since I was so excited by how all this learning was transforming my teaching, I wanted to share it with others. I knew other teachers needed to reform their teaching methods also. So I became a teacher trainer at my school. I have presented sessions at the district, state, and national level. Each day as I enter my school I am encouraged as more and more teachers in the building are now slowly starting to reform their teaching style and transform into 21 century educators.

Today I am a 21st century educator, who learns alongside her 4th grade students as we integrate technology and web tools into our daily lessons. We connect with other classes around the country and the world by using tools such as Skype, blogs, wikis, Glogster, and VoiceThread. We participate in collaborative online projects. My PLN is always close by to lend assistance or offer encouragement as we travel on the road to educational reform in our classroom. Oh, and by the way, my students consistently outscore the rest of our district on interval assessments and the state standardized test, despite the fact that 82% of my students qualify for free or reduced lunch.

I believe that educational reform needs to happen. I believe that the most successful blueprint for reform is what has happened at my school. Get two or three teachers who are willing to try innovative teaching strategies and let them teach the others at their school their best practices and lessons learned. Transforming our schools will not, and should not happen overnight. It is a slow and steady possess. But if done correctly and without strong arm tactics, it can and will happen. And it can and will be successful.

Most teachers are in the classroom for the right reasons. They want to help young people learn and be successful. Now we just have to gently guide these teachers to the practices that will work best to accomplish that in the 21st century, so teachers can help prepare today's students for their future.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Adding Voice to a Word Document

Today as I worked on finalizing the professional development plan of my ETEC 665 course and the technology plan for my ETEC 630 course, I was also clearing out my gmail inbox. I get daily updates from several Diigo groups and have not had time this week to open them. So today I was determined to get my inbox down to zero. As I quickly scanned each Diigo update, I came across one bookmark entitled "A teacher's guide to using audio and podcasting in the classroom". When I clicked on the link I was taken to a blog post by Kit Hard, an educational technology consultant. This is a post that you will want to bookmark for future reference.

I love his instructional matrix and how he outlined the basic steps for his readers. However, my favorite part was learning about adding voice to a Word document in Word2007. I have been delaying updating to Word2007 but will definitely be doing so now that I know about this feature.

Watch this video to see how easy it is to add your voice to documents.

Thanks Kit for the information.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Great News in My Email

I was so excited when I opened my email to find this sitting in my inbox. What a great honor! I was looking forward to attending LaCUE in December, but now I'm even more anxious for the first week in December to get here. Wish me luck and let's keep our fingers crossed.

Saturday, November 13, 2010


Today I learned about through Twitter. If you have the link to an image you can use to experience the image in a new way. You will get a short URL to share with friends or you can embed the viewer directly onto your blog. It's as simple as 1-2-3.
1. Find the URL of an image and copy it.
2. Paste the URL into the Create page of
3. Get a shortened URL to share.

That's all it takes. I embedded the one I tried here on my blog. Here is what the shortened link looks like -

Check it out.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Let Me Count the Ways

It is Sunday night. The second full week of school starts tomorrow and I can't wait to see my 5th period math students' faces. Boy, do I have a surprise for them. Last week they worked on their first blog posts. We are using as our platform. It is easy to use and can be moderated by the teacher through the dashboard of the interface.

As I was making sure I had all my assessments (sigh) and lesson plans ready for the coming week, I checked our Kidblogs and realized that six students were ready to be published. I pushed the publish button and then tweeted about our blogs. Of course I got five replies that said they needed a password to comment. Oh dear, I had forgotten to change the settings to allow anyone with the link to post a comment. (I still have to approve the comment before it appears on the student's blog which I like. Safety first.) Well, I quickly remedied that situation and posted to Twitter that all was now working. Then I got a tweet that me reminded me to use the hashtag #comments4kids when I tweeted about my kids' blog to reach an even wider audience. This hashtag was started by William Chamberlain and you can read more about it here. So I sent out another tweet including the #comments4kids this time around.

I was commenting on the blogs of students of Greta Sandler from Argentina (@gret) when my Tweetdeck starting going crazy chirping Mentions. All of the mentions were RTs (retweets) of my #comments4kids tweet - Anyone up to commenting on the blogs of some 4th graders? I decided to check out what was going on at my kids' blogs. How do I love Twitter? Let me count the ways - 70 comments as I am writing this. 70 comments in less than an hour. I LOVE TWITTER.

Thank you to all of the great members of my Twitter PLN. You have done a great thing. I just hope I can sleep tonight because I am so excited for tomorrow to come.

Monday, August 9, 2010

I Promise to...

As this school year gets ready to start here in southeastern Louisiana, I am thinking about what I can do to make it great. I have been reading thoughts from others in my PLN (personal learning network) on this topic and I have come up with 8 things I promise to do during this year.

1. Try New Things - I am beginning my 35th year of teaching. Wow, even to me the sounds like a long time. But even after all of these years I love being a teacher. I like being the innovative teacher who tries to integrate technology into every lesson. This one should be easy because I have spent the summer learning new ways to use new tools with my students.

2. Connect With My Students - This year I really want to get to know my students' passions. Our classroom theme will be "My Passion is..." I will have all of my students blogging and I plan to add lots of comments to their posts.

3. Get Parents Involved - I will be adding a new kind of teaching to my plate this year. Beside teaching my fourth graders math and social studies, I will be doing some teaching for parents. My plan is to have evening computer training sessions for parents. I want them to learn about digital safety , creating a digital footprint, and using social media for learning.

4. Get My Class Creating, Connecting, and Collaborating - Some of the ways I will get my students creating is by starting the year off with "About Me" Wordles. They will be using for creating their blogs. They will create a Glogster about their passion. We will use Skype to connect with other classes throughout the year. Also my students will be commenting on others' blogs. We will participate in many collaborative projects locally, nationally, and globally.

5. Talk Less and Listen More - I have been getting better at this over the last couple of years. When I got comfortable with the idea that I can't know it all I started learning more from my students. One of my favorite classroom activities is to get them working on their latest project and then "eavesdrop" as they work cooperatively. I learn a lot about my students while doing this informal assessment.

6. Find Balance in My Life - Okay, I'll admit it. The older I get, the geekier I get. I find that I can spend many hours at a time online tweeting, reading articles and blogs, or looking for great projects for my students to do. Too much of my socializing is done online. My house chores get put on hold. I don't eat properly or get enough sleep at times. While I love spending time on my computer, I will be conscious of taking time for other things in my life also. I need to read books, go to the movies, and get out of my house and go for walks.

7. Laugh More - I tend to be more serious than silly, but I love when I can have a good laugh. I am going to be on the lookout for more things that make me laugh this year. The first place I can look is at myself. Being able to laugh at myself in front of my students is the one thing I will have to work on the most this year.

8. Don't Tech Just Because - Since I have a whole room full of new tech tools this year, I am excited to start using them in every way possible. I will make sure that I am using technology to enhance the lesson and engage my students, not just because it is there. I am carefully planning my units and lessons to make sure that learning is at the forefront, not the technology.

So there are my promises to myself. What would you add?

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Social Media on #edchat

#echat Social Media Worlde

This was created from 1/3 of the Social Media #edchat transcript from 8/3. I wanted to see if we could find any patterns within the language we were using. Is it me, or did Wordle create an image that looks a lot like the Twitter fail whale? —@rpetersmauri

I hit 2,000 followers today on Twitter.

Check out the Perk Up Your Projects Wiki

i saw a tweet tonight from @sroseman that said "Perk up your projects with Web2.0". So I followed the link and ended up on this wiki. I looked around a bit and then decided I wanted to play with different logos. Below are some examples.

This one was created at using "Craved"

Image from text generator

This one was created at using "NeonLights"

free glitter -

Check out the ways you can perk up your projects.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Thank You for Reform Symposium 2010

Shelly Terrell, Kelly Tenkely, Jason Bedell and Christopher Rogers were the organizers of the Reform Symposium 2010 that took place online July 30, 31 and August 1. I can only imagine how much work went on behind the scenes to get this symposium planned and then to make sure it went smoothly over the three days. Saying thank you seems so lame, but sometimes keeping it simple is the best so…Thank you!
The organizers used the whiteboard on Elluminate to discuss some of the numbers that were generated by RSCON10.

I liked that idea and decided to compile some numbers of my own.
3 days
18 sessions
14 hours
10 sessions where I took the mic
19 presenters and organizers in my PLN
unknown number of chat entries and tweets

Here is the list of the sessions that I was able to attend virtually this weekend:

Friday July 30, 2010
Opening Keynote – Steve Hargadon 4:00-5:00
Identity Day: Revealing the Passions of Our Students – George Couros 5:00-6:00
It's Not the Tool, It's How You Use It – Mary Beth Hertz 6:00-6:30

Saturday, July 31, 2010
StudentCon: Students Teaching Teachers - Jerry Swiatek 8:00-8:30
Creating a Personal Learning Network (PLN) – Tom Whitby 8:30-9:30
What the Heck is a 21st Century Skill Anyway? – Angela Maiers 12:30-1:30
Skype Around The World - Silvia Tolisano 2:00-2:30
Technology, what's in it for my students - Alexandra Francisco 3:00-3:30
Back-channeling in the Classroom – Richard Byrne 4:00-5:00
New Teacher Survival Kit – Lisa Dabb and Joan Young 5:30-6:00

Sunday, August 1, 2010
Tech in 10 – Kelly Hines 8:00-8:30
Students Refine School – Monika Hardy & students 9:00-10:00
Abolishing & Replacing Grading – Joe Bower 10:30-11:00
Everything I Learned About Tech Integration I Learned From Movies - Nicholas Provenza 11:30-12:00
Innovative Practices in Education–The Power of Students Producing for Authentic Audiences with Authentic Assessment – Paula White 12:30-1:30
This Ain't Your Mother's Classroom: Why You Need to Use Social Media in Your Classroom – Tim Gwynn 2:00-2:30
Education: Timeless and Priceless – Steve Anderson 3:00-4:00
Closing Ceremony – all the organizers 4:00-4:45

I heard Vicki Davis say at one of her ISTE10 sessions I attended this summer, “try to limit your take-aways from a large conference to the top three”. So my top three are:

1. Every student is like a box of Cracker Jacks. Find the “prize” inside of every student.
2. Let students discover their passion and set aside time everyday to let them pursue it.
3. My students and I should be “educational architects” in our classroom.

I have a lot of information to process from the Reform Symposium. I can't wait for the 2010-2011 school year to start so that I can implement some of the things I learned. I am tired and my brain is on fire.

What are your big 3 from RSCON10?

Friday, July 30, 2010

Leadership Day 2010 - My Take

Today marked the fourth annual Leadership Day hosted by Scott McLeod. My post for last year's Leadership Day asked leaders to examine the tools in their technology toolboxes. Then I wrote extensively about how I had added Web 2.0 tools to my toolbox since 2004. I had planned to add to that post each year and basically offer up the same challenge again this year to all the leaders out there.

Well I'm choosing a different slant on this topic this year. Another year has gone by and we have entered the second decade of the 21st century. So many edtech leaders are tired. They were part of the first wave of digital pioneers. They have been evangelizing for technology integration in their districts or schools everyday, some for more than 20 years. They want to know when everyone else is going to get aboard the train. When are all of the leaders in education going to get with the 21st century in terms of technology?

So my post for this year asks this question: As a leader what are you doing to integrate technology into your staff development?

Most school districts in the United States will begin the 2010-2011 school year in the next few weeks. Many districts or schools kick off their year with staff development. As a leader who wants to see technology integration taking place in your district or school here are some ideas on how to deliver your staff development in ways that show you can "walk the talk".

Things to Try
1. Try a different presentation tool - Instead of PowerPoint try Prezi.
2. Try a different way to brainstorm - Instead of using chart paper to gather ideas, try Webspiration or Wallwisher.
3. Try an online storage system - Instead of running off lots of handouts, put all documents on Slideshare or upload them as resources to the school website.
4. Try a different projection system - Instead of an overhead projector or a computer and a screen, try an interactive whiteboard.
5. Try a video camera - Instead of relying on teachers' memories or tons of handouts, capture your staff development sessions with a Flip cam and upload the videos to TeacherTube.
6. Try to use the expertise of others - Instead of being the facilitator of all technology staff development, let members of your staff led a session on a tool with which they have expertise.
7. Try a different voting method - instead of using charts and sticky notes to vote on ideas, use Poll Everywhere or student response systems (clickers).
8. Try a different evaluation method - Instead of passing out an evaluation sheet, create an online survey to be completed using SurveyMonkey or Google Forms.
9. Try a different way to share an expert's advise with your staff - Instead of hiring a budget busting expert to present at your school, use Skype to "bring" the expert to you for free.
10. Try a different way to gather ideas for further staff development - Instead of writing ideas on a piece of chart paper use blog or wiki and encourage your staff members to post a comment to your blog or collaborate on the wiki.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

I Want Every Teacher in My Building to Read This Post

I kept seeing this being tweeted for about a week now and finally had time today to click on the link and read the article. Every teacher needs to read the post "Top 20 Websites No Teacher Should Start the 2010-2011Year Without" by Samantha Smoke. She has written about tools that every teacher should know about and be adding to their toolbox. 

I know that using Web 2.0 tools can seem overwhelming, but I encourage every teacher to try out one new tool each month this school year. Remember that you don't have to be an expert with the tool to begin using it. Just play around with one at a time and have fun. A strategy I use is I use the tool a little bit and then introduce it to my fourth graders and challenge them to learn more about it. I give them time in class to demonstrate their expertise and we all benefit.

Let's start 2010-2011 off on the right foot by learning together.


Posted via email from Paula's posterous

Monday, July 5, 2010

Reflections on ISTE10

I am finally recovered from a very eventful week in Denver. I went to Denver early to spend some quality time with members of my personal learning network (PLN). We had a great time at the cabin and in Estes Park. I wrote about that part of the trip here. I also attended my first EduBloggerCon on the Saturday before ISTE10 officially began. Read my reflections on EBC10 here. I even got to attend the TEDxDenverEd event and I won an Eno board. Read all about that experience here.

I have spent much of the last couple of days reading others' blog posts, reviewing session materials that are being tweeted out, and just chatting with my PLN (old and new) on Twitter. I was so mentally drained when I arrived home that I slept until 11:00 my first day home. I haven't done that in ages. Also during this time I've been trying to get my ISTE reflections solidified. So here they are -

What Did I Learn?

I am an innovative educator. I use many tools, not just for the sake of using tools, but because they help my students create, collaborate, and connect.

I have created quite an online presence. I was looking forward to meeting members of my PLN and I thought I would have to find them. I didn't think that they would be looking for me. When Peggy George come up to me and said she was so glad to finally meet me face to face I was floored. Kim Caise did the same thing, and so did so many people I know online. It was great to hear someone say, "Oh I follow you on Twitter", as I introduced myself to them.

I can't do it all. I struck a nice balance this year between attending sessions, looking at the vendors' exhibits, and spending time in the Bloggers' Cafe. I got to attend some great TweetUps and vendor parties, and I even had some alone time. Yes, there are things I wish I had done, but overall I'm happy with the things I got to do.

I learned that reaching out to newbies was fun and easy to do. I had written a challenge on the ISTE Ning before going to Denver about helping newbies connect. I also wrote about the challenge on my blog. I was successful in meeting my own challenge and hope that others did the same thing. It was great to get to know these newbies on a more personal level - Tami Thompson, John Shoemaker, Dorie Glynn, Karen McMillian, Tim Nielsen, and Donna Dennis. Hope their first ISTE was memorable.

What Are My ISTE10 Take-Aways?

I found that this year it wasn't so much about cool tools for me (except the iPad) as it was about reflecting on my use of those tools in my classroom. Jeff Utecht made me reflect on the projects I have my students do. He took us through a 15 minute engaging project that hit all levels of Bloom. Thanks, Jeff, for a great session.

I learned that it is important to do some training for parents. I plan to schedule a session at the beginning of the coming school year to help parents learn about online safety, creating a digital footprint, and "crap" detection. As a teacher and a teacher trainer I have covered these topics, but I never reached out to the parents. It is important for them to learn about these topics as well.

Having connections to a PLN is very important for helping me stay current and continue my learning. Members of my PLN are the people I will turn to first when I want to work on collaborative projects in my classroom. I am glad that I was able to make so many new connections at ISTE10 this year and I am looking forward to the next school year with renewed energy.


I know as the days continue to pass by I will think of more things I learned while at ISTE10 but these are the ones that are foremost in my mind at this time. Attending this conference was worth every cent I spent to attend.

Photo credit: Melanie Holtsman

Sunday, July 4, 2010

I Attended TEDxDenverEd (6/28/10)

Have you ever watched a TED video and wished you could attend one of their events? Well I have many times and I was one of the lucky people who received an invitation to attend TEDxDenverEd. TEDx events are locally organized independent events that follow the TED format. I had to fill out an online application and then wait anxiously to see if I'd get invited. When my invitation hit my inbox, I could hardly contain my excitement. A while later the speakers were added to the website and I started reading up on those I did not know. I exchanged tweets with Dafna Michaelson and Brian Crosby and told them I couldn't wait to meet them in person at the event.

Monday, June 28 finally came and I headed from the Colorado Convention Center and the ISTE convention to the Denver Performing Arts Center. While we waited for the doors to open, you could feel the buzz of anticipation. We were given a metal water bottle with the TEDx logo on it filled with ice cold water which came in handy because the theater lobby was hot. I met up with my friend, John Shoemaker, from Palm Beach, Florida so we sat together for the event.

As each speaker took to the stage, I was amazed at how calm their voices were while they were delivering such powerful words. My personal favorites were Brain Crosby, Adora Svitak, Dafna Michaelson, and Sarah Elizabeth Ippel.

Brian told about how he gets his disadvantaged fourth graders connected globally. He doesn't let their lack of money or background knowledge stand in their way of accomplishing amazing things. He dazzled the audience with the videos of their latest science project The High Hopes High Altitude Balloon Project.

Adora Svitak used her mighty vocabulary to remind of all that we can learn from children. At twelve years old her stage presence outshines most adults. She is sassy and possesses a great sense of humor. You can view one of her previous TED talks here.

Dafna, a single mother, took on a remarkable tour of the country last year. She traveled to all 50 states in a 52 week period to find average people who are changing things around them. She told us how she encouraged her own third grade daughter to be a change agent at her school. During the break people in the audience were encouraged to add ideas to the towers being created to showcase ideas on how to change a problem in their area. The winning idea with be awarded $1,000 to help get their idea off the ground.

How tenacious are you? Well Sarah Elizabeth Ippel told us about her tenacity. She had to present her idea for the Academy for Global Citizenship three years in a row before it was finally excepted. Imagine having a school in the middle of Chicago that has it own garden and serves organic food at breakfast and lunch. That is what she built in a old barrel factory. Now it is a school that others would like to see emulated in their neighborhood.

As each presenter delivered their talk, Janine Underhill was onstage creating a visual representation on a PolyVision Eno whiteboard. I was fascinated by her work during the first part of the evening. During the break Ashara Ekundayo said it was now time to give away the board. I couldn't believe when she said, "Is there a Paula Naugle in the house?" John had to just about push me out of my seat.

What an evening it turned out to be. I got to attend the "hot ticket" event in Denver, heard great speakers who pushed my thinking, and won an Eno. Thank you to the TEDxDenverEd organizers, speakers, and sponsors for a wonderful evening I will never forget.

ISTE10 Sunday's Events (6/27/10)

Well it has begun. All of the excitement leading up to ISTE10 has brought me to this opening day. I got up early at the Pearl Street mini-mansion, as our place has been nicknamed by members of my PLN. Paul R. Wood and his group are staying at the ISTE mansion in Cherry Creek, I can't wait to visit it.

I called John Shoemaker (@showee) and arranged to meet him for a late brunch at his hotel. John didn't find out until about two days ago that he would be attending ISTE10 from his school district. He and I have developed a relationship on Twitter and we definitely wanted to meet each other face-to-face. We had a great visit and realized that we were attending a lot of the same events while in Denver.

Brenda Smith talked me into attending the opening ceremony. I'm really glad I went because the skit by Mario Armstrong was great. He talked about battling the "Locked Net Monster", "Dollar and Cent-atur", "Medi-Orge", and "Abominable No-Man". I also managed to get one of the ISTE metal water bottles.

Next, I spent some time in the Bloggers' Cafe and watched the opening keynote from here. Pretty sad to watch that unfold, but I won't dwell on it. Other bloggers are having a field day with it, but I don't want to go there. I'll just say it was very sad to witness the feeding frenzy.

My next activity took me over to the Hyatt Regency to attend the Glogster Ambassador meeting. Jim Dachos greeted all of us and handed us a Glogster bag full of goodies to help spread the word. I saw John Shoemaker, Ann Leaness, Patti Duncan, and Traci Blazosky at this gathering. I love and feel very comfortable telling others about this great tool.

Finally I attended a TweetUp at the Hard Rock Cafe. We were packed into the bar area like sardines but it was fun. Had wonderful conversations and enjoying meeting people from all over. Headed back to Pearl Street tried but happy after a long day.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

My First EduBloggerCon

After three wonderful days in Estes Park with members of my PLN, I headed into Denver to attend EduBloggerCon. Last year I missed the EBC in Washington D.C. because I attended the Discovery Day of School event at the Discovery headquarters in Silver Springs, Maryland. Unfortunately Discovery and EduBloggerCon are scheduled for the Saturday before ISTE starts on Sunday, so that means I will have to make a choice to attend one or the other.

EBC was the first unconference I have ever attended. An unconference is planned the morning of the event and consists of conversations instead of presentations. Here you will find the pictures of those who attended and the schedule that was created of the event. My biggest take aways from this event are

students need lessons on "crap" detection

we need to present sessions on digital citizenship to parents

should how we assess tech literacy be standardized (?)

I have some thinking to do.

By the way, I made the picture this year. Woohoo!

Posted via email from Paula's posterous

Friday, June 25, 2010

My PLN at Pre-ISTE10 Get Away

I have spent the last couple of days relaxing in a cabin in Estes Park, CO before heading into Denver to attend EduBloggerCon and ISTE10. Thanks to Beth Still (who organized this whole thing), I am enjoying the company of Paul R. Woods and his wife, Diane, Scott Floyd, Mike Gras, and Randy Rogers who all hail from Texas. Also Steven Anderson (NC), Mary Beth Hertz (PA), Cory Plough (NV), Brenda Smith (NE), Michelle Baldwin (NE), Jason Schrange (NY), Richard Bryne (ME) and of course Beth are all here with me. It has been an incredible experience. The activities have included fishing (not my thing), hiking, sightseeing, eating, drinking and impromptu TweetUps with this incredible group. Steve Johnson stopped by for our Mexican feast last night and Kyle Pace joined us via Skype. This is the power of a PLN and Twitter at its finest.

Personal learning networks (PLN) and Twitter are hard to explain to some educators who have never had this type of experience. My 2009 New Year's resolution was to build my PLN and understand how to use Twitter for professional development. I started on the Ning network and then joined Twitter in February of that year. My goal was to get to know some educators online and then hopefully meet some of them face to face when I attended NECC in Washington D.C. Beth was one of the first people to reach out to me because she had taken a similar journey after attending NECC in San Antonio in 2008. Sue Waters (from Australia) encouraged each step of my process and I used her resource to help build my PLN. Incredibly I did get to spend time with both of them in Washington plus dozens of others I'd met online.

My PLN has continued to expand over this current year and now I'm here in Colorado enjoying quality time with some of them. I am eagerly awaiting the start of ISTE10 where I will get to meet even more "online friends" face to face. Many of my PLN who can not be in Denver are looking to me to keep them updated on all the great events of the conference which I will do through Twitter updates. I have set a goal for myself while at ISTE10 to help make other "newbies" feel welcome and to get them started on the road to developing their PLN.

Posted via email from Paula's posterous

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Great ISTE Advice from a Great Friend

I have never met Jen Wagner face to face and I am sad about that. I have participated in many of her projects over the years and responded to her various surveys she has posted when she is presenting at various conferences around the country. We have been in many a chat room together as we virtually attended conference sessions. Jen was one of the first members of my PLN (personal learning network) and I cherish her friendship. One of these days we will get to meet face to face, but until then I look for her online presence everywhere I go.

I saw a comment on Twitter that sent me to Jen's newest post. This is a must read for all of us who will be attending ISTE10 this week. This is great advice from a great friend.

Posted via web from Paula's posterous

"Connect with a Newbie" Project

As I start packing for my exciting week in Denver and saw a lot of nervous tweets from newbies attending ISTE10 and a great question popped into my overwhelmed brain: What can I do to help the newbies? Well as I was drinking my coffee and thinking back over my previous ISTE (formerly NECC) conferences I remember what a difference feeling connected made to my conference experience, so I put out a challenge on the ISTE Ning.

I posted the link on Twitter and had it retweeted by several members of my PLN including one newbie I can't wait to meet in Denver.

So I ask you are you up to the challenge?

Posted via web from Paula's posterous

Thursday, June 17, 2010

EduBloggerCon in Denver

Last year in Washington D.C. I arrived at EduBloggerCon right at the very end of the event. I was coming from the Discovery Headquarters in Silver Springs, Maryland where I had attended Discovery Day of School. I'm glad I got to attend the Discovery event, but I was sad to have missed EBC09. Well, this year I plan on being at EBC10 for the whole day and learning the ropes of this experience from my personal learning network PLN buddy Beth Still. I can't wait to see what happens at this "unconference" and to meet more members of my PLN face to face. 

I want to be in the picture this year!


Posted via web from Paula's posterous

I'm Backkkkkk!!

I set up a an account on Posterous a long time ago and only used it a few times. Well today I was directed back by another user's tweet and decided to try it again. I've added a few autopost accounts and am seeing how that works.

If you can send an email with an attachment, you can use Posterous for your blogging platform. Easy peasy. I'm attaching a photo that will also be added to my Flickr account. I think I will start using this service regularly.

Posted via web from Paula's posterous

Friday, June 4, 2010

I'm Presenting at ISTE Unplugged

12:00-12:30 pmTitle: Web 2.0 Lessons Learned from an Elementary Teacher
Description: I teach 4th graders and I use many of the Web 2.0 tools you've heard of with them - Skype, VoiceThread, Glogsters, Edmodo, Google docs, and more. Join me as I share my lessons learned and best practices for integrating today's tools into an innovative classroom. Let's share our experiences.
Presenter: Paula L. Naugle, Bissonet Plaza Elementary School, Jefferson Parish Public School System, Metairie, Louisiana

Well I did it. I signed up to present on Wednesday, June 30 at the unconference known as ISTE Unplugged. I am both excited and nervous at the same time. I figure I'll rally some of my PLN members around me for moral support and I'll be fine. (Sue Waters you better be close by.) I figure with the topic I chose and how I like to share my experiences it should go well. Wish me luck.

Check out the schedule and maybe add your own presentation to the list.

Let's Skype While I'm at ISTE10

My last post let you know how excited I am to attend ISTE10 in Denver. I know how jealous I am when members of my PLN are attending conferences around the country that I can't get to. I have attended many conference sessions virtually thanks to my PLN tweeting out the URLs. I have been a part of many backchannel chats while I was sitting at home in my pj's.

I'd like to extend an invitation to anyone who is interested to Skype with me while I am at the Bloggers' Cafe. Too many people think they shouldn't go there if they don't blog. Nothing could be further from the truth. They really should call this area PLN Plaza. Everyone who hangs out in this area of the convention center is more than willing to engage in conversation with anyone who is there. I will spend several hours in the Bloggers' Cafe each day and would love to let you experience it first hand. If you are interested add plnaugle to your Skype contacts and let me know through a tweet or an email that you would like to connect. I will do all I can to make you feel a part of the experience.

Can't Wait to Attend ISTE10

Today I filled out a survey put out by ISTE asking what excites me about ISTE10. I found that an easy question to answer. I am excited about meeting the members of my PLN (personal learning network) face to face. I was fairly new to Twitter last year when I went to Washington, D.C. to attend NECC, but I was warmly welcomed into the Blogger Cafe by the likes of @bethstill, @suewaters, @jutecht, @rmbyrne, @paulawhite, @paulrwood, @dobrien917, @angelamaiers and many others. I went to a TweetUp and attended a baseball game with my new friends. I had great conservations with @coolcatteacher, @stevehargadon, @teach42, @mcarls, and other wonderful educators. I had such a great experience that I decided there and then that I would definitely attend ISTE10.

I've been lucky enough to attend NECC04 in New Orleans, NECC08 in San Antonio, and NECC09 in Washington D.C. Each of these trips was funded by my school. Funds were written into our School Improvement Plan to allow for this. Unfortunately those funds are not available this year, but I decided to foot my own trip to ISTE10. Why you might ask? Is the $1,500 worth it? My answer is absolutely YES.

What will happen in those five days in Denver will be worth every penny I will spend to attend. I will attend sessions presented by innovative educators from around the globe. I will renew my old friendships, and establish many new ones. I will get to share ideas and set up collaborations for the coming school year. I will hear about others' best practices and learn new ways to use Web 2.0 tools. I will get to spend quality time with other educators who are like me. I will get to hone my presenting skills at ISTE unplugged. I am psyched. It will be so invigorating.

I am prepping for my trip by adding an ISTE10 column to Tweetdeck, tweeting with my PLN, establishing a presence on the ISTE Ning, ordering my Twitter Tshirt, organizing my conference planner, and signing up for activites like TweetUps. I have started adding places of interest to my ISTE10 Google map and I downloaded the Bump app to my iPhone so I'll be ready to exchange contact info with everyone. Okay what have I forgotten?

Can you tell that I am excited to get to ISTE10? If you are attending I hope I get to connect with you. If you are not attending in person, be on the lookout for all of the tweets on Twitter which will tell you how to attend virtually. Look for the backchannels that I'm sure will be set up for some of the sessions.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Yesterday I attended Spotlight on the Gulf webinar featuring Philippe Cousteau. According to Steve Dembo there were a record number of attendees. Actually I attended the second session which was offered to people who live in the areas that are most affected by the Deepwater Horizon disaster. I received an email from Discovery saying that due to such a large number of people registered for the event that the second one was being offered.

Philippe is a passionate environmentalist and listening to him explain the impact of the oil spill was heart breaking. Unfortunately at this time there are more questions then answers about what impact this will have on our environment. He included pictures and videos that he had taken on his tour of the affected area.

I live in the New Orleans area and am already feeling the affects that this spill is having on our area. It saddens me to think of how long it will take to get Louisiana’s wetlands cleaned up.

The webinar and related extension activities can be found here.

Photo credit:

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Check Out TeachersFirst Website

Hooray! Summer is here, and we finally have time to relax and collect our thoughts for fall. Here is one of my favorite places to find great teaching ideas, time savers, creative lessons, and teacher-reviewed web resources: . Take this treat home for the summer. You and your students will thank me!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

A Meeting with a Member of My PLN

I've been on Spring break this week and have been enjoying the time off. However, I never completely stop thinking about technology or connecting with my personal learning network (PLN). When I attended TeachMeet Nashville virtually on Friday, April 1, I began tweeting with several other attendees. Before I knew it I was tweeting with the founder of TeachMeet Nashville, Jason Bedell and Nancy Blair(a member of my PLN) about hosting a TeachMeet in Louisiana. People who have been to TeachMeet like to call it the unconference. TeachMeet (un)conferences happen all over the world. They are put on by teachers, for teachers, at no cost to the teachers.

Well Nancy and I found out that we would both be in Mississippi on the same day this week, so we set up a face-to-face meeting to discuss founding a TeachMeet in our respective areas. Nancy has experience as a conference planner and she knows the steps that help insure a successful event. She is planning to have TeachMeet Georgia in the fall, while I will be hosting TeachMeet Louisiana in the Spring of 2011. We met for about two hours and got a rough outline together. How cool is that. Both Nancy and I gladly gave our free time to work on events that will hopefully hook other educators into the wonderful world of technology.

DEN Virtual Conference at Bissonet Plaza

On Saturday, April 24, Alexis Western and I hosted an in person event for the DEN Spring Virtual Conference at my school. Since it was the first day of Spring break for the teachers in our district, we decided to delay the start time until nine o'clock. We had a small intimate group but thoroughly enjoyed the day.

Alexis ad I showed the attendees how to register and then log in on their own laptops. We demonstrated the various features of the WebEx interface and encouraged them to chat with the other virtual attendees. We took a break when our catered lunch arrived from Chez Nous. During lunch we started talking about our personal learning network (PLN) and the power of Twitter. All of us on Twitter made sure we were following each other and tweeted about our event. We also explained the process for becoming a DEN STAR. Several of the teachers in attendance said they were going to apply.

We also spent time helping each other with our Promethean flipchart project that is due before the end of the school year and discussing our plans for learning over the summer. I had a wonderful day, learned plenty of new things, and added some awesome members to my PLN. I hope that is true for all who attended. Thanks for coming.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

What is Your Element?

Tonight I attended a webinar which had Steve Hargadon hosting Sir Ken Robinson discussing his book The Element. Since I knew yesterday that I would be attending this session, I downloaded Sir Ken's book onto my laptop Kindle and read about a third of it before I went to bed last night. (Stayed up too late.) While the session was not without a few tech issues, I was amazed that the Elluminate platform performed so well with over 500 attendees. The audience felt like a gathering of my personal learning network (PLN). It was a hoot to watch everyone place their star on the interactive whiteboard map to show their location. The world was well represented.

I feel quite comfortable using Elluminate, since I use it almost every Saturday morning, when I attend the Classrom 2.0 Live sessions. I have become a pretty good multitasker - listening, watching the chat, typing into the chat room, opening links, and posting links for everyone to view. But let me tell you, with over 500 people the chat was flying by faster then I could read it. I didn't get to make too many comments or post any links. I'll enjoy revisiting this archived session after it is posted at I've also enjoyed adding to the discussion on the Book Discussions Ning that Steve started. I look forward to being able to finish reading Sir Ken's The Element.

I was always a passionate educator, but when technology integration became a buzz word that I wanted to learn about, I found my true "element". I love being a 21st century teacher. I should be retired since I've been doing this for 34 years. Well, actually I did retire, but I also returned to work. I am so excited to create lesson plans that are full of technology integration. I spend much of my free time guiding my own professional development through Twitter, Nings, blogs, and webinars. I want to learn something new everyday that I can use in my classroom. My fourth graders also add to my technology learning. When something doesn't seem to work quite right, I turn to them first before calling for tech support. They have solved the problem on many occasions.

I am grateful that I discovered my passion is to truly be a lifelong learner and to try and ignite that fire in every student I teach. What is your passion? Have you discovered your element?

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Are Your Students Engaged?

(To properly watch this Prezi that was created by Ryan McCallum, click on the gray triangle. After it finishes loading, click on the "More" button, and then click on fullscreen.)
One of the members of my personal learning network (PLN) shared the link to this Prezi with me. I think Ryan McCallum's Prezi is a wonderful reminder to educators everywhere that our students need to be engaged or they could be enraged. Why not share this with members of your PLN?

Sunday, March 7, 2010


I attended several of the sessions that were streaming yesterday and was inspired by those I heard present. Here you can view Lawrence Lessig's presentation on Blip.TV. Today I learned about Wiffiti so I made a screen that has Twitter and Flickr updates tagged TEDxNYED added. I was given an embedded code so I could add it here.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

I Joined Twitter 365 Days Ago

A few days ago I was trying to remember exactly when I joined Twitter and launched @plnaugle into the Twittersphere. So I typed "when did I join Twitter" into the Google search bar and was taken here. After typing in my Twitter username, I discovered my first anniversary would occur February 25 - today. I knew I would have to celebrate my anniversary by posting a reflection to my blog.

A year ago I set up my account and spent time trying to figure out if this social network was for me. I made the typical newbie mistakes like following celebrities and people I didn't have much in common with. I posted a couple of questions when I had only a handful of followers and wondered why no one responded to my queries. I listened to the naysayers who said, "Who cares what someone ate for breakfast?" Like a lot of first-time users I didn't understand the Twitter stream or how to find the right people to follow. So I started a Google Reader alert for "Twitter" and soon had tons for material to read. Slowly but surely it started to make sense.

I can honestly say I have learned more from being on Twitter this past year than I had learned in the previous five years about Web 2.0 tools, technology integration, innovative teaching, project-based learning, elearning and many more educational topics. I have been an educator for thirty-four years and know that Twitter is the best tool I have in the toolbox.

Here are my stats as my first year comes to a end - I am following 657 people; 1,412 people are following me; I have been listed 68 times; I have tweeted an update 2,968 times. And one more interesting fact that was shared with me on Twitter tonight - Steven Anderson (@web20classroom) also joined Twitter on February 25, 2009.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Just 2 Questions

I am going to borrow this idea from Dodie Ainslie. I found her by following the tweets of Michael Gorman who decided to follow me on Twitter..
I had watched the Daniel Pink video just the day before I discovered Dodie's blog post. The video spurred me to order and download his book Drive to my PC Kindle. I had even read the first few chapters of it by the time I headed over to her post. Isn't it funny how two people can watch the same video and decide to do different things because of it.
But thanks to the sharing that goes on in the Twitter stream, I was able to find a great project. Thanks Michael and Dodie.