Archive for March, 2012

Online Maori Dictionary

In the ‘why don’t I know about this’ department is the fabulous Maori Online Dictionary.  I’m sure this isn’t new to lots of people in New Zealand but I hadn’t seen it until tonight.  While it is targeted at Maori Language students I’m planning on using it to translate some signs I want to make and will be giving it a big plug during Maori Language Week.

Māori Dictionary Project

The overall aim of this website is to support learners of Māori. New entries and additional meanings continue to be added. In 2007 photographs of species and people began to be added. Unless otherwise listed below, these are the copyright of the author. The following people and institutions are acknowledged for their photographs:
Ben Barr – geckos, skink, pūriri moth, Hochstetter frog.
Bub Smith – whio

In 2009 the sounds of all the native birds were added to the dictionary. We gratefully acknowledge the McPherson Natural History Unit and Viking Sevenseas Ltd for permission to use these.

This dictionary complements the series of four textbooks and related resources in the Te Whanake series for learning the Māori language. For further information about the Māori language resources please visit the Te Whanake resources website.



Keep Calm and Carry On – the real story

It is everywhere!  Now learn the story behind the posters.  And of course it is connected with books!

Bridget's Readings, Ramblings, Recipes and Randoms

Here is the story behind the now ubiquitous posters.  Great story!

It came to me via Neatorama

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Information Literacy – an article to make you think

Well, this article from Library Journal Teaching How Information Works, Not How to Work Information, has made me revisit some ideas.  Barbara Fister writes eloquently on the topic of Information Literacy and how it is taught.  She is writing about the university undergraduate setting but many of her thoughts transfer directly to the secondary school.  Are we teaching our students to really think about the sources they are using?  To evaluate them in a reasoned way, or are we teaching them Information Literacy by numbers? Is that what we believe they need?  Is it what they do need?  Is it time to change what we tell them with regard to what is ‘good’ information and what is not?


We’re instructing students to do what comes easily. If you use books, you’re probably safe if the words “university press” appears on the title page. Limit your database search to scholarly articles. The assumption is that research that looks like scholarship is innately superior to other sorts of research, but we might as well be telling students that storks bring babies. I’d bet on the research that went into a New Yorker piece by John McPhee or Seymour Hersh against a large proportion of scholarly articles any day, and they have the added benefit of being understandable. We aren’t really teaching students to think, we’re teaching them to judge books by their covers.  This seems even more superficial now that the formats are changing and traditional publishing models seem increasingly unsustainable. This week’s kerfuffle as the renowned science publisher Springer published, then seemed to withdraw a book about intelligent design, illustrates why determining validity using brand names is tricky.

If you read nothing else read the last paragraph in her article.

Only a small percentage of information use starts with identifying an information need and seeking authoritative sources that will satisfy that need. Much information use involves creating paths for information to flow toward you (as experts do, building networks and following online conversations) or being able to make good judgments about information you encounter. We assume information is sought and that judgments can be made based on visible signals embedded in a source. As the information landscape changes, as definitions of authority and reputation change, as we move into a world where publishing will be fundamentally different, we need to rethink what we talk about when we talk about information literacy.

Yes, for me, time for a rethink about what I mean when I say Information Literacy.  Thoughts?

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The Horizon Report 2012

It’s out.  One of the reports worth paying attention to.

The New Media Consortium (NMC) and EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative (ELI) jointly released the NMC Horizon Report: 2012 Higher Education Edition. This ninth edition describes annual findings from the NMC Horizon Project, a decade-long research project designed to identify and describe emerging technologies likely to have an impact on learning, teaching, and creative inquiry in higher education. Six emerging technologies are identified across three adoption horizons over the next one to five years, as well as key trends and challenges expected to continue over the same period, giving campus leaders and practitioners a valuable guide for strategic technology planning.

This one, and the Core Trends in Education would be great to share with your staff and SMTs. Even if your school isn’t adopting mobile technology or Game Based Learning yet, you can bet that at least some of your staff will be paying attention.  Link to the report here.

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