Social Reading with Doug Peterson @dougpete

Very cool – I get to spend 45 minutes with Doug Peterson, the person I read the most on Twitter!!

Being a connected educator opens doors to the fire hydrant known as the internet. With so much available, how do you find and read the best? But it goes far beyond that – in this session, we’ll discuss how reading can become social, talk about the benefits, and share some techniques to becoming a social reader and really, a social curator.

How do you share your Good Reads?


reading tools

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Diigo
  • Rebelmouse
  • Instapaper
  • Zite
  • – really cool tool will send your tweeted articles to your Diigo account

all great for the iPad

Alltop – will grab stories that you want especially if you create an account

Popurls – again can customize if you create an account

Pulse Reader – a good RRS reader

Flipboard – again a great tool on the iPad, great reading program, you don’t click, you flip – focuses on a concept not a web site – creates for you a daily newspaper based on your Twitter followers

Ontario Bloggers – live binder of Ontario educators – broken down into various categories, teachers, principals, consultants etc

  • if its good enough to read its good enough to share
  • connect your twitter account to other social media accounts
  • build your library of knowledge and share it with others!
  • Diigo becomes your personal curated Search Engine
  • Filtering makes this work –

Connect to @dougpete!  always terrific curated material – Doug’s wiki where he stores everything

Thrilled to be listening to Doug Peterson!!
Thrilled to be listening to Doug Peterson!!

Best tool for content – Zite

another tool to use is Learnist – by categories, relevance, date

Wonderful Time!!

Here is a transcript of Doug’s notes:

Here is an annotation of the slides that go with my presentation from the #ECOO13 Conference.  At the bottom of the page is the Google Presentation that I used.  I had originally planned to use SlideIdea on the iPad but decided to present from my laptop so that I could use wired internet.


Slide 1 – Title


Slide 2 – I read in bed!


Slide 3 – How do you share your good reads?  I’ve shared and been the beneficiary of sharing all my career.  Biggest insight was from the Teacher Librarian at my school.  He would read newspapers and relevant articles to our mailboxes.  We’ve come a long way since then.  In a digital world, sharing is so much easier!


Slide 4 – I’ve always been a reader throughout my life.  The most recent case where it helped was filling in for a pregnancy leave at the university.  The students were to blog but they didn’t know about what!  So, I started sharing things via Twitter and told them to follow me and blog about one of the topics that I shared.  It turned out that there were others other than the class that started to read what I was sharing and I got a lot of flack when I stopped.  So, I restarted.


Slide 5 – There are opportunities to share what you’re reading and thinking about via many social media platforms.


Slide 6 – I talked about my social media flow.  I drew a chart that showed my reading in the cloud and what I do with it.  For me, it’s more than just a quick read.  I want to share it and I also want to keep track of it.  By sharing to Twitter, I have monitor my Twitter feed.  Every time I send a Twitter message that contains a link, it gets posted to my Diigo account.  The advantage of doing this?  Because it ends up in Diigo, it means that I’ve read it at least once and found that it was good.  Now that it’s in Diigo, I’ve bookmarked it.  With modern browsers like Firefox or Google Chrome, I can make my Diigo account my search engine.  Now, when I look for something, I search there first knowing that I’ve already previewed the content.  In effect, the links are almost always guaranteed to be a good source.


Slide 7 – The neat thing is that people on Twitter can learn along with you.  Check the activity of your account when you’ve sent a Twitter message and you’ll see that some people will have retweeted or favourited the resource.


Slide 8 – Some of the tools that I use.


Slide 9 – Zite – Major reading source which searches the web based on content, not necessarily an RSS feed.  Zite finds resources that I would never find otherwise.  It needs to be filtered but great resources can be “thumbed up” so that you see more of that content.


Slide 10 – Rockmelt – I loved it as a browser; I loved it as a social reading program.  Recently, it was acquired by Yahoo! and retired but I keep it in the slide deck on the hope that Yahoo! brings it back in some incarnation.


Slide 11-18 – Other reading sources – Learnist, NewsSquares, Pulse Reader, Flipboard, Trapit all serve as great collector of stories for me.  The key is to seed the types of stories and the type of news feed that I want.  They all do their job and bring in news stories for me.  I spread the sources around because we are dependent on a resource that will be there when we need it.  Should one of these go away, (oh no), I’ll have the others.  I don’t have all my eggs in one basket.  I also demonstrated Alltop and Popurls since I was in a browser already.


Slide 19 – But that’s me.  I’m a proud member of an educational community that is also reading and sharing resources.  I use to generate newspapers highlighting what others are reading.  Combine this with my stuff is a great way to stay informed.


Slide 20 – Ontario Educators – It’s easy to get overwhelmed by content from other countries.  I think it’s important to stay on top of what’s happening in Ontario.  As I find new blogs from Ontario folks, I’ll add them to this Livebinder.


Slide 21 – I think it’s important that you reflect on your reading.  I would encourage all learners to start their own blog to comment on articles or create new ones of your own.  If you’re using D2L though eLearningOntario, why not blog there?  Or at any of the major reliable blogging platforms.


Slide 22 – Sharing.  That’s what it’s all about.  I really believe that if it’s good enough for you to read and learn from, it’s good enough for others as well.


Slide 23 – Filtering is a key skill.  Will Richardson made a great point once – Zite filters EdTech, I filter Zite, all he has to do is filter me.  (Good luck with that, Will)


Slide 24 – Call to Action – I hope that people in the session consider sharing their learning as well.  When we all share, we all benefit and grow because of it.


Slide 25 – Links to the resources that I shared.


Since I did the presentation in my browser, I also shared Alltop and Popurls that happened to be open at the time.

here is the link to the presentation visuals

#ecoo13 Blogging in the classroom

word press

Various technologies can be used to make thinking visible. We began exploring blogging within this context, but soon it became apparent that there were more reasons to encourage student blogging than just visible thinking. Blogging allows students to create, rather than just consume. It affords them the opportunity to collaborate and create a community, among other advantages.

This session will look at the power of blogging, demonstrate how blogging can be used across various grades, levels and subjects, and discuss the practical issues of student blogging.

Questions we will discuss include: How can you get students to buy-in? How can you get students to blog regularly over the course of a semester? How can you evaluate student blogs? How can you avoid pitfalls?

Blogs in Plain English

a way of getting thinking out there so we could talk about it

allows students to choose what they are going to write about, also will give them a real audience for the first time.  Gives students a community that can continue outside of school.

Types to use – Blogger, edublogs, wordpress – all vary in level of difficulty


single or multi-blogs – which to use?

One blog – easy for the teacher to see all comments at one time.  Or, you can give a Blogger account to each student so they can customize the blog.


  • having students take it seriously – at first, kids may not take this seriously have to be taught this as well.  Needs to be addressed
  • developing rich posts and comments – you need to write so that people can respond –  students need to be taught how to do this.
  • lack of ownership (multi-author blog) – second year, each student set up their own blog and they needed to comment on what was going on in class.  Objective – to get the students to communicate.  When they get to write about something they are interested in the quality of the posts get better.
  • rigidity (seen as solely a classroom activity) – if set up as a classroom activity students will not blog on their own
  • lack of feedback – kids were not getting real feedback from others in school or out of school #comments4kids on twitter can encourage people to respond
  • instructions for setting up – students need to have explicit instructions on how to set the blog
  • label/tag – students need to get used to making multiple tags including their name so that you can find the writer
  • marking – blog post rubrics available – important to have this.



interesting point – you can’t force blogging, it comes and it goes, so how can we do this for the students? Lisa’s blog

where to next – the teachers will continue with it!  The teachers have blogged their experiences on their own blogs.

Here is their site for further information –

great workshop on the challenges of blogging in the classroom
great workshop on the challenges of blogging in the classroom

HandouT on how to write good blog comments

#ecoo13 session 3 Google Chromebook Implementation and Use – A View From 4 Levels: Board CIO, Principal, Teacher & Student Perspectives

This session will look at the implementation and use of Google Chromebooks in the classroom. Mark Carbone, CIO with the WRDSB, will offer a board perspective on Chromebooks, discussing infrastructure, the implementation of board wide wi-fi, supporting a system wide move and what tools are needed for the task. Ed Doadt, Principal at the WRDSB’s Huron Heights Secondary School, will then offer insight from an administration perspective, detailing the background of the board’s Futures Forum Project. He will look at how it has led to a common philosophy and approach based on common strategies, tools and language and touch on how Chromebooks have helped enable this. Andrew Bieronski, a teacher who works under Ed at HHSS in the Futures Forum Project, will then speak to the use of a set of Chromebooks in his classroom. He will look at how their use supports collaboration between teacher and student and also between students themselves. Andrew will offer a breakdown of how the Chromebook compares to similar tools, and highlight how it enables active learning through the use of Google Apps. Lastly, a student from Andrew’s class will join the presentation through video-conferencing and share their perspective on how the use of a Chromebook has supported and improved their learning. This session will be free flowing with time for questions and open discussion, and will build on the introductory session Mark and Ed offered at ECOO last year.




Board implementation

English-Civics and Careers – Futures Forum Project

You need to have the right kind of people at the board level and at the school. You need also to have the right students – either they were picked, or at random, both worked well.  When you have the right kind of people then you can have a successful project.

Use of Chromebooks in the classroom – not a Windows platform.

advantages – everything stored on-line, long battery life (easily up to a day), 8-second start-up, very cheap


all programs are cloud-based.  Students can have their own login or login as ‘guest’

More popular than netbooks or iPads!

can also be managed at the board level.  IT can send out updates overnight.

Even if you lose your connection, many of the applications that still work.

Also there are many companies out there that are coming up with applications that work on the cloud, video editing for example can now be done through on-line applications.

As a collaborative tool, the teacher can create shared folders on Drive so that all assignments and work can be stored on Google Drive.

Printing – can connect to another computer to print or airprint model if necessary.

This board (WRDSB)  will be rolling out 60 Chromebooks per school.

Chromebook session



I would love to get these machines into my school!!

session 2 #ecoo13 panel discussion on the future of the textbook


Members from Pearson, Discovery Education, Oxford Learning, Desire2Learn, and Hamilton-Wentworth DSB’s Director of Education John Malloy will share their vision for the future of the textbook. Are paper textbooks a dying commodity? Will every student have access to what we traditionally think of a textbook on an electronic device? Will we embrace blended and online learning and access textbooks through an LMS? Or is the future going to be a blend of things? Watch this lively discussion and meet some of the leaders in Ontario Education and listen to their thoughts.

summary of panel discussion:

Is the print textbook dead?

Moving from format to output.  How do we make our content more social?

information is now at our fingertips – this is a little more daunting than the textbook – how do you organize information now?

We need to help students understand the potential of digital.  The range of solutions that the textbook offers is now limited.  But, we need to develop a new set of teaching and learning tools, textbooks will have a lesser role.

The textbook is deeply embedded, it is a challenge to move people away from that.

Kids today would never buy a whole album – they choose exactly what they want.  It is the same with the textbook – more important – how do we take information and turn it into intelligence.

There is much more of a collective form of information where one can choose and share information.

We still want this printed word.  Are we teaching our kids how to communicate with visuals, create video, etc

session 2
How do you manage the digital rights when students and teachers are generating content?

It is increasingly difficult to make money on intellectual property.

Part of the challenge is cost which relates to intellectual property.

What we really need to do is help teachers need to move to the new world.  We can’t stay in the old one of the textbook and photocopies.

One thing the textbook does is curate content.  However, there are great curation tools on the web.  Who does this, the publisher?  The teacher?

Math – teachers do not have a deep understanding of math – build that into the lesson.  Content was one piece, but the bigger question how to we develop a deep understanding of that content.

Big question Why School (Will Richardson) when you can get any content why school? How do we help students own learning and take responsibility for it?  That is the future.

The future is life-long learners.  Start what problem are you interested in?  That is where we need to start with students (Inquiry).

We need to use technology to extend the joy of learning and inquiry.


Great session!


#ecoo13 Thursday Keynote – amber mac @AmberMac

Doug Peterson starts off the second day of the conference #ecoo13
Doug Peterson starts off the second day of the conference #ecoo13

Part of Amber’s bio:

Thursday 24th October, 2013

8:15am to 9:30am (EST)

Amber Mac is an entrepreneur, television host, professional speaker, and bestselling author. She co-hosts a TV show on CTV/BNN called AppCentral, which airs nationally in Canada, Australia, and South Korea. Amber is a regular contributor on CTV News Channel and has appeared on various other networks, such as CNN. She writes weekly for Fast Company, where she discusses social business, digital productivity, and how to work smarter. Amber has also hosted a number of online video shows for Fast Company, which her digital marketing company produces.

“Amber Mac is a virtual Swiss Army Knife of networking: she displays an endless amount of enthusiasm and energy that nearly crackles off the page. More importantly, she demonstrates a deep and practical understanding of the necessity of extending one’s personal and professional presence online.”

Amazing conversation!

my notes are all here  I wrote as fast as I could!


Day Two at #ECOO13

After an amazing Day One, I am ready to start Day Two.  I am still trying to process all I learned yesterday.  No question, the most important conversation was with MaryKay Goindi @MKGoindi.  What she had to say about math: making learning visible, the problem-solving mind set, how to record learning with Evernote, etc was truly amazing.  When I wasn’t talking to her I was trying to write down everything that was being discussed.  I wish our teachers could have been here, I think they would have loved it.

This is certainly a great education for me.

screenshot of visual captured yesterday using evernote and annotated by Educreations
screenshot of visual captured yesterday using evernote and annotated by Educreations

This is a pretty lame example of what you can record with these tools, but if I can do it anyone can!

What MaryKay had to say about teacher mindset was also extremely important.  We are asking teachers to teach math in a way very different from how they were taught.  As a principal, I realize now that I need to find opportunities for my teachers to get more training in this new mind set.  This is not just a problem at our school, it is a problem for our school board and for our province – lots to think about, lots to do.

Today, I will be starting with the keynote by Robert Baker, Director of Technology, Cincinnati Country Day School.  His topic – You Really Can Have It All

His school was the first to go 1:1 way back in 1996!  Below is a short video about his school.  Great way to start day two!