Posted in Bookmark It!, digital learning, digital parenting, digital world reading habits, resources to read

International Children’s Digital Library: Changing the World One Book at a Time

What if our children had instant access to a library with thousands of books from countries all over the world — a place that invited them to drop by, read, and learn about one another (and without driving)? Imagine what they could find out about the world’s cultures, celebrations, languages, differences, and also about what they have in common.

Click here to visit the library.

That just about describes the mission of the International Children’s Digital Library (ICDL), an online destination hosted at the University of Maryland. The massive website, with digitized books in 61 languages is the largest online collection of multicultural children’s literature, and everything on the site promotes reading and the love of diversity.

Continue reading “International Children’s Digital Library: Changing the World One Book at a Time”

Posted in attributing sources, digital learning, digital parenting, evaluating web site resources, parents and technology

10 Tips to Ensure that You Use Accurate Digital Information

Even in today’s fast-paced virtual world, these tips never seem to age. Help kids learn to make good choices.

1.  Who made the site? Is it from a university or other institution? Is it for-profit or non-profit. Corporate?  Look for an “about” link that describes the site.

2.  When was the site made and how often is the site updated? Somewhere, usually at top or bottom it should tell. Is this site updated recently?  If not this may be a reason to check out another website on your topic.

3.  Is it possible to contact the webmaster or the sponsor of the site? Is there a “contact us” link somewhere on the page?

4.  How much advertising is on the page, and how aggressive is it? Good sites that use advertising are careful to keep it from being “in your face.”

5.  Does the site state its mission? Why was it set up?

Continue reading “10 Tips to Ensure that You Use Accurate Digital Information”

Posted in cultural changes, online education, parent education, parents and technology

Online Education Moves into Our Lives

If you haven’t read the article, GWU Launches Online Prep School, appearing in the January 22, 2011 Washington Post, check it out. The piece, by reporter Daniel de Vise describes the digital school, but he also explains how a dramatic shift — toward digital learning — is occurring world of education as more and more people take computer-based online learning courses. The  article also examines whether online learning is a good learning tool in the world of adolescents. The jury is still out on this question, because of the strong organizational skills that are required to complete an online course. You can visit the GWU Online High School website and also the Stanford University Online High School website.

Posted in answers to media questions, media literacy, parents and technology, social media, social networking

Want to Learn More About Social Networking in Our Lives?

The website MarketingCharts.com offers some interesting charts as well as explanations that tell how people make use of social networking sites. Check out Younger See More Soc Net Benefit. Just a few paragraphs down on the same page is a section that describes the social networking habits of middle age and seniors — Older Soc Net Dramatically Rises.

Take a look, also, at some of the charts that depict all sorts of World Wide Web user statistics. Links to a few interesting charts are below.

  1. Top 10 Video-Multimedia Websites
  2. Top 10 Telecommunications Websites
  3. Top 10 Social Networking Websites and Forums
  4. Top 10 Politics Websites
  5. Top 10 Online Games Websites
Posted in great sites for students, homework, parents and technology

Grammar is Fun? Grammar Girl Sure Is – Bookmark It!

Does someone in your house need an occasional grammar review? Do occasional questions about word use or punctuation come up as a family member writes important essays and reports? If so, check out Grammar Girl’s Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing. It’s amusing for kids and adults, too, but there’s a lot to learn along the way. We listen to these podcasts just for fun, and I know a family that downloads the “casts” to listen to on family car trips (okay, it’s my family).

Visit Grammar Girl’s Website

Grammar Girl posts regular podcasts — free and never more than a couple of minutes long — and they are chock-full of interesting information about usage, punctuation rules, and accepted practices. She uses humorous examples, not unlike the understated but clever examples found in Strunk and White’s The Elements of Style, a revered but unpretentious reference first published in 1918 and still widely used today.

Continue reading “Grammar is Fun? Grammar Girl Sure Is – Bookmark It!”

Posted in digital parenting, great sites for students, homework, Internet Public Library, parents and technology, research on the web, resources to read, teens and technology

Internet Public Library — Bookmark It!

Parents and teachers are always on the hunt for a reliable Internet site that children can visit time after time and be certain of the quality and reliability of the content. The Internet Public Library (ipl2) fits the bill, a resource that is just as good for adults as it is for children. With a motto of “Information You Can Trust” the IPL2 is a searchable, subject-categorized directory of authoritative websites with links to online texts, newspapers, and other resources. Librarians review everything in the collection.

What to Check Out at the Internet Public Library Continue reading “Internet Public Library — Bookmark It!”

Posted in great sites for students, homework time, parents and technology

The Library of Congress Website: Go Exploring with Primary Sources – Bookmark-It

The United States Library of Congress started with Thomas Jefferson’s personal library – 6,487 books. Now it’s an enormous collection of information on almost any topic a person wants to study. The library’s history page notes that “… it has become the largest repository of recorded knowledge  in the world and a symbol of the vital connection between knowledge and democracy.”

The resourceful staff at the Library have a finger on the cultural pulse of the country, so not only do the collections include books, papers, music, film, historical documents, and images, but now the library is digitizing its collection. As of February 2009 there were 15.3 million digitized items and anyone can access and download this information to a computer. According to the Library of Congress blog (subscribers welcomed), if all of those digitized items could be saved to CD-ROM disks, the pile would be a mile high, and that was more than a year ago.

The Library of Congress website is just the right place to get started with research for a class project or homework assignment. Start by going the section for kids and families, with features that are mostly, but not exclusively, useful to elementary and middle school students. Some of the searchable features in this section include: Continue reading “The Library of Congress Website: Go Exploring with Primary Sources – Bookmark-It”