Links to Shakespeare sites

Shakespeare's tomb

by Loz Flowers

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

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Useful Links (weekly)

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

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Shaun Tan – more award nominations

Shaun Tan

Shaun Tan

I am a Shaun Tan fan. I have been since I saw The Rabbits, the John Marsden book he illustrated.

I love all the different styles he uses in his illustrations and I greatly enjoyed listening to him speak about his latest publication, Tales from Outer Suburbia earlier this year. This book had some wonderful short stories he had written as well as illustrated. My favourite, Alert but not alarmed, involves the  storage of ballistic missiles in suburbia.

Tales from outer suburbia

Tales from outer suburbia

From the CMIS site I have learnt that Shaun has been nominated for two Chesley Awards, given by the Association of Science Fiction and Fantasy Artists, for Tales from Outer Suburbia.

The Chesley Awards were established in 1985 as ASFA’s peer awards to recognize individual works and achievements during a given year. The Chesleys were initially called the ASFA Awards, but were later renamed to honor famed astronomical artist Chesley Bonestell after his death in 1986. The awards are presented annually at the World Science Fiction Convention(Worldcon).

Shaun has alreadybeen acknowledged on the international stage when he was named Best Artist at the World Fantasy Awards in 2001 in Montreal and in 2005 his book, The Arrival, which was a universal story about migration, told in a series of wordless images, became an international best-seller.

This time Shaun has been nominated for Best Interior Illustration and Artistic Achievement. The winners will be announced in Montreal on the 6-10 August at the 67th World Science Fiction Convention.

It is wonderful to see a really talented Australian author/illustrator acknowledged on the world stage. If you want to hear some of Shaun’s views on illustration, in March this year he gave the Colin Simpson Memorial Lecture. You can visit this site to hear his lecture and/or read the transcript. He spoke with great insight about using illustration as a narrative device and I summarised his lecture in a post earlier.

Navify – Searching Wikipedia, Flickr and YouTube

My colleague Tania found this tool via the Free technology for teachers blog. I had seen Nibipedia, but Navify was a new tool for me to look at. It is a mash-up of Wikipedia, Flickr, and YouTube.

We all know that many of our students use Wikipedia,which may be developing into the world’s most extensive encyclopedias, as people continue to build on the information it contains. It does sometimes lack visual content, ie. pictures and more often videos, to assist with the written explanations. This can, at times, place a limit on its informative value. 

Navify seeks to redress this problem. Like Nibipedia, it attempts to match videos and images to Wikipedia articles.



To use Navify:

Go to the Navify site and do a standard Wikipedia search (no log in required) by simply entering your search term, just as you would in any search. The results will be returned in a tabbed form displaying:

  • Wikipedia article
  • related images and
  • related videos.

The images tab offers photos added by Wikipedia (or Navify users) and those automatically discovered on Flickr. It is very new at the moment but, as more users come on board, I can see this becoming a great source for relevant and useful images.


Video tab

Video tab

The videos tab works exactly the same way except that it finds related videos from YouTube.

Commenting on articles is also allowed. Navify is also supporting these comments using Disqus, so you will be able to read what people are saying about the Navify article pages.

The service is also planning on offering a music player so that users can listen to full related songs and audio content. So far I have found with my searching that Navify enhances the Wikipediaoption. It is still developing but has potential to become much greater. There seems to be no end to what tools people are thinking up to try and create better searching options. They won’t all survive and it will be the users who decide, in many cases.  It is a very interesting time for those of us interested in information searching.

A sharing culture – CC video

I have been to a number of professional development sessions lately. The subject of engaging our students is a hot topic and has  been discussed in a number of educational forums. What I find is amazing, in all the workshops, conferences, etc. I attend, is how willing many of my colleagues are willing to share. Since being on-line, over the past couple of years, colleagues from all around the world have been sharing with me. When people share, offer suggestions/help and comment on your efforts/thoughts it is so affirming. If we feel like this then surely students would also enjoy this aspect of learning. This spirit of collaboration and support would also be appreciated by our students. They would be engaged if they were sharing and collaborating with more than just the teacher (and maybe their class). In fact they are when they have had opportunities to exhibit/present their ideas.

However we all know just how often in schools sharing is sharply limited for teachers, let alone students. A teacher I was working with is so keen to share and collaborate with teachers, not just in our school, but other teachers or schools. She has just started to see the potential but there is a long way to go before many others understand the power of such collaboration. I believe it will change, although I sometimes worry about how long it is taking to even get a toehold in some quarters.

I have been talking about Creative Commons licenses to students for 2 years. They “get it” but teachers are slower. It is odd because many teachers do not understand copyright and often have to be reminded that, just because you are using something in a school, you cannot simply copy things in their entirety or en masse. You would think that they would have been right onto CC but not so.

This is another video that explains the idea behind the creation of “Creative Commons“. I like this one because it is very inclusive in its outlook, not limited to subject/topic, culture, etc.

The Creative Commons video, “A Shared Culture,” makes a strong case for sharing content and empowering people to share their voices and perspectives on the global stage. I like how this video recommends that we should be thinking about building a sense of community as well as sharing content. I would love to throw out the challenge to colleagues at my school and have everyone think about at least one thing they could share, “out there in the digital world”, each term. Easy?!


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