therms 2From the Vancouver Sun Article:

Parents fear health effects, despite lack of hard evidence of medical risks

The debate about whether wireless technology in schools poses a health hazard is gaining steam, says the president of the B.C. Confederation of Parent Advisory Councils (BCCPAC).

Health Canada insists there is no convincing evidence that exposure to low-level radio frequency energy from Wi-Fi poses a health hazard,

 

Open Education has come of age. The tiny movement that began in the late 1990s as a desire to increase access to educational opportunity has blossomed into requirements in national grant programs, key strategies in state legislatures and offices of education, content sharing initiatives at hundreds of universities and high schools, and a wide range of innovation and entrepreneurship in both the commercial and nonprofit sectors.

For over a decade the focus of the open education community has been on open educational resources. As we celebrate the success of that work the Open Education 2012 Conference will also lay out a road map for the next decade where open education moves beyond content.

OpenEd12, the ninth annual Open Education Conference, will frame the conversation about the future of open education. Come be part of the discussion – we need your energy, brains, passion, and dedication!

Join us for the “annual reunion of the open education family,” spanning three stimulating days in Vancouver, BC, October 16-18.

~from the Open Education: Beyond Content Website. Further information and registration here

Check out the Education Library’s new addition to the dvd collection: Why Reading Matters. A BBC 4 Production.

“Science writer Rita Carter tells the story of how modern neuroscience has revealed that reading, something most of us take for granted, unlocks remarkable powers. Carter explains how the classic novel Wuthering Heights allows us to step inside other minds and understand the world from different points of view, and she wonders whether the new digital revolution could threaten the values of classic reading.”

 ~text from the publisher’s website. Publisher’s information here.
 

UBC Library Holdings information here.

Join the discussion and help shape a National Reading Plan that will encourage, support and promote the joy of reading across Canada.

Have a look at the National Reading Plan DRAFT here.

Click here to view a detailed programme.
 

Register now, SPACE IS LIMITED.

~text and links from the National Reading Campaign website.

Ebooks are driving momentous changes. In Vancouver, librarians are inviting the public to help reinvent their mission.

There are certain things, good and bad, that ebooks can’t offer. Old bookmarks, penciled annotations and chocolate smudges between the pages… the tactile human touches that make die-hard proponents of print swear they’ll never make the switch.

But those traditionalists are becoming the minority of library borrowers, as the relative convenience of ebooks — downloadable from the comfort of one’s home — appeals to more and more library users. According to recently-released stats from the Vancouver Public Library, the lending and borrowing of electronic content, and in particular ebooks, is exploding.

At VPL, ebook downloads have increased almost tenfold year-on-year, from 3,718 in 2010 to 35,671 in 2011. On top of that, the library estimates that if the current growth rate of ebook borrowing continues, it will take less than five years for ebooks to dominate circulation.

Of course, the explosion of ebooks isn’t news to the publishing industry, which is still adjusting to the digital shift. Scott McIntyre, the publisher and chairman of Vancouver-based D&M Publishing, recently shared his take with The Tyee that sooner rather than later, at least in the publishing world, ebooks “will conquer all.” And there’s significant evidence to support McIntyre’s prophecy. Mid 2010, Amazon.com reported that sales for its Kindle reader outstripped hardcover sales, and by January 2011, Kindle books surpassed paperback sales as well.

Yet while the story of publishers reeling over the digital surge has been told, how are libraries affected by the shift? As VPL’s director of planning and development Daphne Wood points out, there are a number of issues the library faces with the takeover. Issues like how ebooks are licensed to libraries, concerns about access to e-readers (and a potential new “digital divide”), and how to build modern collections that appease everyone, are top of mind for many librarians.

By Robyn Smith, 05March2012, TheTyee.ca

Read The Tyee full article here.

January 15, 2012 

- by Chris Kennedy - Author of cultureofyes blog

 

I have used the above slide in a number of presentations to make the point that British Columbia is leading Canada (perhaps even the world) in the professional use of social media in K-12 education. I freely admit I don’t have the statistics to back up the claim – there are simply more teachers, administrators, parents, trustees, and others here, who are logging into their blogs, Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube accounts in the name of professional learning, than any other jurisdiction.

In the past year we have moved from several dozen blogs around K-12 education, to numbers in the hundreds, with representation in every area of the education system.  The #bced tag on Twitter is one of the most engaged with conversations about the ever-changing education profession, and there are many other social sites having these conversations as well.

The conversations around the profession itself are very interesting.  In social media, ‘role’ becomes less important; there is a flattening of society and it is ‘ideas’ that have increased value.  There are also incredible opportunities  to reflect, share, and learn without the limitations of geography. I could go on, and there have been many others who have covered the ground about the value of social media for educators, and how Twitter and blogging can be extremely powerful in professional development.  This is true for those interested in education in BC, but it is also true of other professionals around the world.

So why has BC moved so quickly and taken such leadership in this area? As mentioned, I have no statistical proof, but a series of ideas as to why BC is the leading jurisdiction using social media to engage in the profession of education.

Read full article here.

A new initiative by the Canadian International Learning Foundation has set out to overcome what Canadians say is the single biggest barrier to becoming a volunteer: lack of time.

“Change the world in five hours a week” is the mantra of the Educator Volunteer Network, which matches up skilled Canadians with schools in developing and at-risk regions around the world, letting them donate their time without ever leaving their desks.

Educatorvolunteer.net is the brainchild of Ryan Aldred, president of the CanILF, a registered charity devoted to improving educational opportunities for children in destitute and war-torn regions. Through the agency’s work in Afghanistan, Aldred said, he saw that online volunteers could make a massive difference to schools.

“Two things we were struck by was how interested Canadians were in getting involved and how many schools were out there looking for assistance. We kept thinking, ‘What can we do to help these schools?’

“So we came up with the notion of an online community where we could connect the two groups and help them work together. The network launched in September and the response has been amazing.”

So far more than 50 volunteers have signed up to provide one-on-one online assistance with new technologies, research requests, curriculum enhancement, development of resources, writing content for websites and putting together budgets and business plans.

To volunteer or to donate, visit educatorvolunteer.net

Read full article here.

By Gillian Burnett, Vancouver Sun December 8, 2011

© Copyright (c) The Vancouver Sun

The Vancouver Sun – Education News

It was about six years ago that UBC professor Jon Beasley-Murray first noticed his students citing Wikipedia in their essays.

If they were going to use Wikipedia for his class on Latin American literature, he thought, they might as well improve some of the shoddy articles on the subject.

For the past five years, students in his class have edited or contributed articles to Wikipedia as part of a class assignment.

“It was a chance to break down some of the barriers between the university and society,” Beasley-Murray said.

Wikipedia is described as a “free, web-based, collaborative, multilingual encyclopedia project supported by the non-profit Wikimedia Foundation”. It was launched in 2001 and takes the first part of its name from the Hawaiian word “wiki,” for fast, and is the name of a server program that allows anyone to edit the website’s content through their own browser.

At the moment, Beasley-Murray is one of relatively few professors using Wikipedia in class assignments, but that may change this year. The foundation behind Wikipedia is hoping to get more teachers using the website in the classroom. So far, the universities of Alberta and Toronto have agreed to take part in the project.

Read more here.

By Jordan Press, Postmedia News November 4, 2011

jpress@postmedia.com

Twitter.com/jordan_press

© Copyright (c) Postmedia News

Innovative Media for the Classroom and Communities

Use diverse educational tools to enhance learning: Our trusted, high-calibre content includes exciting web-based learning platforms and teaching guides probing topics such as environmental studies, citizen media and Aboriginal culture.

Teaching Guides

A good study guide can bring a film to life within a classroom setting. Guides are available for thousands of NFB productions, helping teachers to choose the right film for their curriculum and get the best out of NFB resources.

Included are detailed curriculum notes and lesson plans, along with hands-on classroom activities and discussion starters.

In addition to our study guides, NFB Education provides short Education Descriptors—brief curriculum notes and grade level suggestions—for more than 2,000 online titles.

Education Playlists

Looking for animated shorts to show in your art class, or films that explore the complex issue of racism? Or are you seeking a good way to mark World Earth Day or another cultural event?

The NFB provides a growing collection of thematic playlists selected by experts to illustrate specific subjects or themes.

Educational Websites

A compelling and well-researched website can be a powerful learning tool, illuminating multiple aspects of an issue and engaging students in exciting creative dialogue.

The NFB has created its own cutting-edge interactive productions and has supported other web-based initiatives. These productions can provide a fresh approach to topics like Canadian history or Aboriginal culture and help clarify complex issues such as international development or environmentalism, or they can introduce kids to film animation in a playful and appealing manner.

~from the National Film Board Website – Education

 

The Vancouver Sun

BY Katherine Monk, Postmedia News, JANUARY 23, 2012

PARK CITY, Utah — There are many bizarre sights parading before the viewfinder of a Sundance Film Festival visitor, but the indoor tree imported from Banff and the bear cage outside the library are two of the more cryptic signs of unfettered creativity sprawling around Park City.

Part of a National Film Board interactive film project called Bear 71, the cage and the tree are more than publicity props; they’re symbols of a larger work that aims to jolt the viewer into a different state of awareness about the natural environment, and our relationship to it.

“In our modern age, it’s hard to know where the wired world ends and the wild one begins,” says co-creator Leanne Allison, half the filmmaking team behind the Gemini-winning Being Caribou.

“This whole thing started with a huge collection of trail photographs gathered in Banff National Park. These were images that were not framed by people. They were sort of nature uninterrupted.”

Essentially low-resolution stills gathered from motion-activated cameras in the wild, the images showed a variety of animals simply doing what they do, from crows and eagles to foxes and bears.

The bear was the central motivator for Allison, because she and her husband, Karsten Heuer, a park ranger in Banff, had been following her moves for years.

Read more here.

© Copyright (c) The Vancouver Sun

Checkout the National Film Board’s Interactive Website here.

UBC LIbrary Catalogue NFB Screening Room access here.

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