Test, test, test
So my 6th graders are finishing up their Discovery 2012 projects. We gave them lots of time in February to research the topic of their choice and then they prepare a final project in whatever medium they choose. So the computer lab becomes a little chaotic…with kids making movies, creating Keynote presentations, writing books and creating wikis.
This time I had one young man who created a timeline using Timeliner. I see that there’s a new “multimedia-rich” version, but, alas, that’s not the version we have. I wanted something a little flashier for him, so I had the bright idea for him to recreate it using an online timeline website. So I did the unforgivable: I did a search for online timeline and jumped into having him use Dipity.com to create his timeline. Without testing it first.
What a disaster. For one thing, I’ve had few websites that load as slowly as this one, which often led to him wasting class time waiting to get in. And now that he’s done, and we’re getting ready to share our projects at parent/teacher conferences, I’ve had numerous problems getting in. I keep getting some internal server error. Oy.
Thank goodness I have that old, boring, Timeliner version saved. And hopefully I’m upgrading to the new one for next year.
And no more jumping into using a website with a student without testing, testing, testing.
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Debbie Harris is the director of educational technology at the Sager Solomon Schechter Day School in Northbrook, IL and teaches religious school at Lakeside Congregation for Reform Judaism. Involved in Jewish education for over thirty years, she received an education degree from Northwestern University with a concentration in instructional media. She is skilled in using and teaching desktop publishing, video editing, presentation and animation software; and consults and presents regularly on integrating technology into Judaic studies. Her students podcast, blog, edit video and create claymations. She co-chaired the technology track for CAJE 33 in Vermont, is a SMART Certified Trainer for SMART Notebook version 10 for both Macintosh and Windows, and a 2011 recipient of the Grinspoon-Steinhardt Award for Excellence in Jewish Education.
When not learning, teaching or writing about technology, Debbie likes to craft. While not particularly highly skilled at anything, she likes to knit, do calligraphy, sew, paint fabric and just generally play with fun toys like scrapbooking supplies, watercolors, and anything with texture. She is incredibly proud of her two daughters; Lori, who teaches English at a community college; and Allie, who is the associate director of the URJ’s Camp Newman in California.
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Email Debbie here
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