Transforming the meaning of evidence and truth

This morning I read a post at Engadget titled Researchers make a surprisingly smooth artificial video of Obama "Their program grafts audio-synced mouths onto existing videos." The post describes the process used by the University of Washington researchers: "The researchers used 14 hours of Obama's weekly address videos to train a neural network. Once trained, their system was then able to take an audio clip from the former president, create mouth shapes that synced with the audio and then synthesize a realistic looking mouth that ...

140 Characters in the IB Classroom

"Twitter" flickr photo by Uncalno https://flickr.com/photos/uncalno/8537569665 shared under a Creative Commons (BY) license The word "Twitter" (as in a certain social media platform) has been turning up more and more in the news recently.  Twitter itself isn't new (if you're interested, you can read the history of Twitter in this post on lifewire), and it isn't new in education.  But as it is being talked about right now, I thought it might be a good time to take a closer ...

Is it fake nature, or is it a story?

First, I'd like to explore the "Is it fake nature" part of my post's title: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xMZlr5Gf9yY "The 1958 Disney documentary into lemmings that won the academy award. Footage of lemmings jumping off cliffs was later found out to be faked. Edited version just showing the fake footage." My guess is that most of you reading this post are not old enough to have watched the above television show when it was first broadcast in 1958.  (I will admit that I remember it vividly.  It ...

Encoding and Decoding

Anyone connected to ICT and education is familiar with the word "code" - and recently "Teach the kids to code" is all the rage. It usually implies that we should teach kids the fundamentals of computer programming. (In this post I'm going to use the word "kids" as a code word for "learner of any age".) But if you think about it, we also teach kids to code, as in reading and writing, all their lives, all the time.  Let's explore this ...

The Right Questions

This morning I read this post by David Hoffeld, on FastCompany: Want To Know What Your Brain Does When It Hears A Question? "Questions hijack the brain. The moment you hear one, you literally can't think of anything else. And that can be a powerful tool." I began to think about questions, specifically Inquiry Questions as they appear on IB unit of inquiry planners...and I wondered if the research described in the FastCompany post (focused on sales and management) would be useful to us in ...

Check Twitter Settings

The use of Twitter by Donald Trump has prompted a hacker, WauchulaGhost, to point out security precautions to the President and also serve as an alert to any Twitter user. Many IB teachers use Twitter and post to IB-related hashtags # and follow @ postings relating to IB programmes. Hashtags, official and unofficial, include: #IBPYP #PYPinquiry #pypchat #PYPexhibition #mypnextchapter  #IBMYP #MYPchat #MYPSciences #mypphe #IBDP #ibtraining #ibgeog #IBGlobalPolitics #ibpsychology #IBprogrammes #IBcommunitystories #learnerprofile #InquiryBasedLearning #servicelearning #IBlearnerprofile #IBeducation #internationaleducation IB teachers also follow postings from accounts such as IBO, ...

Alternative Facts

This week a post on The Adventures of Library Girl (a blog by written by Jennifer LaGarde,  the Lead School Library Media Coordinator/Digital Teaching and Learning Specialist for New Hanover County Schools in Wilmington, NC.) titled Fake News, Alternative Facts and Librarians As Dedicated Defenders of Truth pushed me to think about the idea of Fake News and how librarians, classroom teachers, ICT teachers and schools in general have been working for decades to help students sort the wheat from the chaff when ...

Computational Thinking for All Educators

Recently there has been a lot of talk about "coding", and about the difference between "coding" and "programming".  In several of the articles I read discussing these issues, a free Google online course was mentioned:  Computational Thinking for Educators.  So I went to investigate.  The "real time" experience of this course is over, but all the materials are online, and you are welcome to explore it at your leisure as a self-study program.  The course was designed to help Humanities, Math, ...

Not so secret ingredients in learning with technology

Part of my morning routine, after looking through email, is checking through new Scoop.it and Flipboard postings.  I often have to check the date a story was posted originally, because even though it is "new" on the sharing sites this morning, it may be "old" news, and has been shared and re-shared again and again, only now turning up in the thread of a subject or person I follow.  That's what happened this morning: an interesting title caught my attention scooped ...

The IB Learner Profile, ATL and Anti-Plagiarism Software

I recently found myself involved in the review of a school's Academic Honesty Policy, which led me to some background reading, which (as often happens) caused me to fall down an internet rabbit hole: First stop: NPR ED "Turnitin And The Debate Over Anti-Plagiarism Software" (August 25, 2014, Heard on All Things Considered) [audio mp3="http://blogs.osc-ib.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/20140825_atc_turnitin_and_the_high-tech_plagiarism_debate.mp3"] Coming as I do from the IB world, this phrase in the post caught my eye: The fact that anti-plagiarism software can't tell the difference between accidental and intentional plagiarism is just one reason ...