Viral blog ranking

This entry is more about blogging than education, but I am trying to raise the profile of my blog, so that I can raise the profile of educational blogs in general… so I stumbled (literally) on this page and thought I’d give it a go.

Viral Reciprocal Carousel is a great free way to raise the ranking of your blog with Technorati and other opinion leade

– copy and paste from this line (including the line) —

Why this will work

  • It provides value through personal recommendations
  • Links to your blog with linktext of your choice
  • Backlinks come from within a dedicated content about your blog
  • Rotating content will prevent it from penalties from search engines
  • It is viral – more participants means greater effect

How it works

Simply follow these few steps to get it working for you:

  • Create a new post on your blog and start it with a few words about how you came into this carousel.
  • Copy and paste the entire text between the red lines (including the red lines, too).
  • Check if all links are working after copy and paste.
  • Remove the very last recommendation from the list.
  • Add a recommendation for a blog you love to the top of the list with at least 2 to 3 sentences about why you love to read that blog, and add a little note that you recommend it, together with a link to your blog. Here is an example:

MarcoRichter.net is a blog I love to read. It provides latest information about blogging, link building and blog seo issues. From detailed how-to articles to some ultimate resource lists, Marco covers a wide variety of information for your daily blogging routine. Recommended by: WordPress Web 2.0 Spot-Er

Blogs I recommend because I love to read them daily:

  • Shambles – What’s new and exciting is a great blog, full of educational tips for icts and for new ideas for integrating web 2.0 technologies into teaching. Check it out for a fresh look at new technology! Recommended by Educational Resources Online.
  • HowtoSpoter.com – Alex Sysoef is my blogging guru. His Web 2.0 Wealth blogging system is dynamite! And his blog provides more valuable information on blogging than any other blog I know of. It’s a must-read if you want to make money blogging. Recommended by: Blog Design Journal
  • terrydean.org – Terry Dean is one of the original Internet Marketing guru’s who retired after having a huge success and going from pizza delivery to a true internet riches. I read his blog on daily bases among a few other. Always prefer to go to the source of information and his blog is one of them. Recommended by: WordPress Web 2.0 Guide
  • canimakebigmoneyonline.com – run by George Manty is the definite ressource when it comes to monetizing your blog. Being more than 2 years on the scene, there are several hundreds of articles on making money online. Take your time to read through them all – it´s worth it. Recommended by: Marco Richter
  • bloggingtips.com – More than 10 authors contribute interesting blogging topics to this site. If you want to stay updated on what´s hot in the blogosphere, this blog is a must read. Recommended by: Marco Richter
  • bluejar.com – run by Sarah Pacopac does more than blogging topics and goes out to browser relates issues and also provides some design and affiliate marketing information. Recommended by: Marco Richter
  • OneMansGoal.com – run by Bryan Clark is a good stop for bloggers wanting to learn more about generating visitors for their own blogs. He adds some time management topics for those among us looking for optimization of their daily routine. Recommended by: Marco Richter
  • topsecretblogger.com – This one is a completely community driven project. Everyone is invited to sign up and write a post on the blog. Many contest will be attracting other bloggers to come in and join the project. I think this will become even more influential in the future, it´s definitely worth taking a closer look. Recommended by: Marco Richter
  • probloggersmatrix.com – Mark´s blog is well-established and concentrates on topics about the relationship between bloggers and their readers. His posts are often titled as questions, what helps starting a conversation with the audience. Recommended by: Marco Richter

This carousel has been started by Marco Richter – the basic concept is a slightly adjusted version of Alex Sysoef´s reciprocal review carousel.

– copy and paste up to this line (including the line) —

So now apparently I sit back and watch the hits roll in…. fingers crossed!

Kay.

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Alan November: a guru

Want to find out where it is really at when it comes to technology and education? Visit and read anything that Alan November has put out – and you will be greeted by down to earth, practical and useful information about how it is important for educators to change their approach to the classroom and technology, and how we need to take advantage of rather than shy away from the huge world that technology opens up for us. So who is Alan November? This is from his blog:

Alan November is recognized internationally as a leader in education technology. He began his career as an oceanography teacher and dorm counselor at an island reform school for boys in Boston Harbor. He has been a director of an alternative high school, computer coordinator, technology consultant, and university lecturer. As practitioner, designer, and author, Alan has guided schools, government organizations and industry leaders as they plan to improve quality with technology.

Alan is well known for applying his humor and wit to inspire us to think about applying technology to improve learning. His areas of expertise include information and communication technology, planning across the curriculum, staff development, long-range planning, building learning communities and leadership development. He has delivered keynote presentations and workshops in all fifty states, in every province in Canada, and throughout the UK, Europe and Asia.

Alan was named one of the nation’s fifteen most influential thinkers of the decade by Classroom Computer Learning Magazine. In 2001, he was named one of eight educators to provide leadership into the future by the Eisenhower National Clearinghouse. His writing includes dozens of articles and the best-selling book, Empowering Students with Technology. Alan was co-founder of the Stanford Institute for Educational Leadership Through Technology and is most proud of being selected as one of the original five national Christa McAuliffe Educators.

You can keep up with Alan November’s thoughts and work through his blog at

http://nlcommunities.com/communities/alannovember/default.aspx and you can also read a number of his very informative articles and find his suggested useful websites through this site: http://www.novemberlearning.com/Default.aspx?tabid=1

As usual, there is far too much to read, and not enough time to do it, but by even subscribing to his blog using rss, you can at least take the time to see through the summaries of his entries where his thoughts are at … and who knows what this might inspire??

Until next time!

Kay

Keeping in Touch with Netvibes

This unique mashup allows you to capture all of your information needs in one place. By registering (it’s free) you get your own page that you can design however you choose. You can include your email account, your blog/s, any number of cool widgets, ALL of your rss feeds and heaps more! You can even include ‘universes’ that have pages devoted to celebrities and other interests. I have included a screen cap of my netvibes page so you can get the feel of it… I have a main page that has basic info that I would use like email, blog, news feeds, weather widgets, to do lists, photos from flickr etc, then several other ‘tabbed’ pages that have all of my rss feeds grouped according to category eg Japan, Education, Web 2.0 as well as my delicious page and other delicious pages that I manage or am interested in. It is a great little tool for keeping on top of everything – try it out!

(click on the thumbnail for a full size screen capture)

http://www.netvibes.com/

Kay.Netvibes screen capture

Simple Learning Objects

 Okay, so this is not really an ‘online’ resource, but after a recent inservice I have fallen in love with using powerpoint to create simple learning objects.

A learning object is a tool that encourages children to interact with their learning digitally.  A paper published by Margaret Haughey of the University of Alberta and Bill Muirhead of University of Ontario Institute of Technology at http://www.usq.edu.au/electpub/e-jist/docs/vol8_no1/fullpapers/eval_learnobjects_school.htm finds that although learning objects have many definitions, essentially they are used to:

  • introduce new topics and skills
  • provide reinforcement to existing skills
  • extend learning by providing new means for presenting curricular material
  • illustrate concepts that are less easily explained through traditional teaching methods
  • support new types of learning opportunities not available in a classroom environment
  • provide enrichment activities for gifted and highly motivated students

I have been using powerpoint to create very simple learning objects, but I would dearly love to learn how to use Flash, as this provides more flexibility with animation and with the types of effects that you can achieve. Using powerpoint involves the use of clipart and many, many hyperlinks, so that when a student clicks on a particular image or word, they are taken to another slide that provides a response to their decision. To illustrate, I have uploaded a simple learning object that I have developed for Prep children (aged 4 and a half years old) that retells the parable of the Lost Coin from the Gospel of Luke, and encourages them to participate in helping the old lady recover it. You can see it below.

The Lost Coin Learning Object 

For further tips on how to use powerpoint to create learning objects, check out these websites:

http://www.learningtechnologies.ac.uk/materials/LSDA_Learning_Objects/1_Developing_a_Simple_Learning_Object_LO1/index.htm

http://www.actden.com/pp/

Have fun!

Kay.

Webquests

Sorry about the huge gap between posts…. I have been busy with a change of jobs and all of the associated issues and work!! I have also been working hard on assignments for my Masters.

However a couple of requests have jogged me into action – on the topic of webquests!

I could spiel about webquests, however why settle for second best – let’s go to the expert, directly to Tom March, the ‘guru’ of webquests! He has a number of articles and web resources on webquests that are easy to access and understand, and heaps of examples that are ready to be used in the classroom!

Tom March points out that there are lots of webquests that are not actually true webquests – that is, they ask students to access information online, and require them to present their findings in some sort of technologically assisted format, but they do not require students to take that information and transform it into their own understandings – that is, take it in, understand it and reformulate it in their own way.

Anyway, go to the blog of Tom March to get the goss on webquests:

http://tommarch.com/writings/wq_power.php

and also check out the links he includes!

For an easy to use webquest creation tool, try http://www.kn.att.com/wired/fil/ – a site called Filamentality. Filamentality is a fill-in-the-blank tool that guides you through picking a topic, searching the Internet, gathering good Internet links, and turning them into online learning activities.

Have fun! if you lodge your webquests online, leave a comment with the link so we can all share in the richness of each other’s talents!!

RSS – explained

http://www.liewcf.com/blog/archives/2007/04/video-tutorial-rss-in-plain-english/

A cute and effective video that explains how to use RSS (feeds) to keep

up to date on the web. Check it out – it is a very clear explanation of something that in essence is quite simple, but can appear quite complicated to use if you don’t know what it is all about….

This blog has feeds – those links on the side – they are updated whenever the websites they come from are updated – and you can take advantage of this technology too to keep up to date easily and with little effort or time wasted from yourself!!

Visual Search Engines

Inspired by a hit placed on the OZTLNET forum, I decided to explore the concept of visual search engines. This was a little difficult for me, because I am NOT a visual person. Reading text, yes. Looking at pictures, interpreting diagrams, seeing things mapped out – no. I love linear text – ok, so I can totally click all over the place on the internet, but to see something in a visual way does not make it any clearer for me

HOWEVER…..

for many people, visual responses to searches are a Godsend. If you prefer to see something mapped out in a type of cluster, KartOO, Grokker and Mooter are for you. Check out these links to see what I am talking about:

http://www.mooter.com/moot

http://www.grokker.com/

http://www.kartoo.com/en_index.htm

Here is an example of the results that you can expect as displayed by KartOO:

Another cool search engine is retrievr – select a picture, either from your hard drive or from a website, and retrievr will find many, many images that match the one you have selected according to the most pronounced shapes and slabs of colors – ideal for when you are doing a collage or wanting to build up a theme – it can be found at http://labs.systemone.at/retrievr/ .

So have fun!

Oh, and if you wanted to know where the name ‘Grokker’ came from – Wikipedia tells us :

The name Grokker is inspired by the 1961 Robert A. Heinlein science fiction classic “Stranger in a Strange Land,” in which Grok is a Martian word meaning literally ‘to drink’ and metaphorically ‘to be one with.’ To grok something is to understand something so well that it is fully absorbed into oneself. It is to look at every problem, opportunity, action, and point of view from any and all perspectives.

One day I hope to grok the internet!!!

Kay.

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