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Tuesday, February 8, 2011

QR codes & A blog with legs and bling!-Kick Start Activity 7

Plunging in Deep came about because I was doing some boogie board surfing with my kids in some wild seas at the time, and ICT can just be a bit like that - out of our depth and we always look out for the lifesavers to help us. Always looking for mentors and forums and searching for help. That's why I loove this challenge!
On my plungingindeep blog I started with:
  •  a counter, a configure stats widget, customisable out of 4 choices. It's a blogger design. Here is the help site. 
  • Then I have a flag counter which is clocking up rapidly, thanks to the mention by Sue W in this teacher challenge posts of the week. (Under add media - Jane).
  • I have some links to some of the sites in this challenge, to separate these from blogs that I really want to refer to.
  • I like having popular posts, and you can dig deeper here and see the figures on the sites.
  • Then I have categories, I called themes.
  • A subsribe to.. tab
  • the follow button ('google friend' friendly)
  • A blogger logo
  • Share it (on Facebook or twitter)- I like having this option.
Then on the right hand side I have: 
  • another tweet button from tweet button from blogger.
  •  My clustrmap -instruction clear for blogspot blogs
  • My 'about me' page, which does carry over to my second 'blogger' blog which I just made for another class this week. That is called (not the youth class)
  • My two pages -with headings
  • a blog archive
  • Twitter feeds from what I have tweeted (you can read about 4 of them)
  • and a video bar for You Tube, with keywords like migrant, ESL, and Burma. I do get some weird choices here (they pop up randomly), so I have reduced the keywords a fair bit. 
  • I'm not sure how to put an image (QRcode) into my side bar though?  -should be easier than any widget I've got! Leave comment if you can help please.
The teacher challenge asked me to look at the QR code and generate one of my own. Here it is.

Screen shot 2011-02-13 at 11.57.48 PM
I used the free QR generator I used for this one on the right.

This is the Quick Response generator. This uses
 the iTag app on an iPhone. I think this is a cool little app that has a lot of potential in education, although we are a fraction limited because the students won't have the equipment/tools to use it yet. Once technology reaches the people at a rate they can afford, then I think we could go ahead and use this in many different fields. In ESL I guess it would mean interpreting language, finding out, research, orienteering, recognition of places, things, objects, getting information for new migrants, addresses. Perhaps it could replace the need for reading as was suggested at Converge10 in a techno-future presentation. 
Yes, it is all coming. What an exciting time we live in to see all these amazing changes and ideas!
It's great to be part of the wider twitter groups, in ESL, education,social networking in education, instructional design, chat live, symposiums & webinars in elluminate, it's great to be following so many amazing minds, like friends, it's PLN boom time for me! I do it on my day off when I should be cleaning the house. How times have changed..

PS check out QRcodes in google images..


  1. Hi Jane,
    You've certainly explored your widgets. My craft blog is with Blogger and I've got to say, adding gadgets seem a little easier there than in Edublogs (my teaching blog).

    I've finished the challenge and a little sad but ready to move on. I've "met" so many interesting people and hoping the conversation continues in the blogs and on Twitter. I noticed you haven't got a widget to follow you on Twitter and maybe my how-to post on this might be of help.

    Enjoy the rest of the challenge and happy blogging.

    FYI, I'm an ESL myself (from the Philippines where English is a second language) so I can emphatise with your students. I find I struggle most when I'm tired and when I perceive that people forget that I am ESL because, generally-speaking, my English is good.


  2. Hi Malyn,
    Thankyou for leaving the comment, and I enjoy when people can tell you what's missing. So I have put the tweety bird in now after visting your blog.I couldn't tell my your writing you are ESL.

    So often my students drift in and out of the class' learning', they fiddle, punch, use phones, talk in L1, they are youth and they are just so hard to settle. But I go with it, I can't force it. They will learn when they want to I guess. I just try to hold interest with humour fun & games. Writing is a pretty short lived excercise.

  3. Hi Jane! I enjoyed reading this post. I love activity on the sidebars and the sidebars on your theme balance nicely the posts of your blog. I like the youtube bar.
    If I could make one suggestion, I think that your about me, side widget should be higher up, but that is only because I always look to see who is writing the blog and where they are from.
    To add your qr code to your sidebar, I open the image up in MS Paint or an image editing program. Then I resize it if need be and save it as a jpg.
    Then I pretend I am writing a blog post, insert the image, goto the html tab, copy the code and add that to a text widget on the sidebar. You could just grab the html code from your qr code as inserted in this post. You will need to adjust the width and height, then add to the text widget. Hope that makes sense and if it does not, please say and I shall rephrase.

  4. hmm, thanks Murcha, yes that makes sense.good idea, didn't think of the html page to grab from. Shall do. Prob use the code for the other blogs then. How do you use them? I'm fascinated by this new tech. Should we be thinking twice about using phone nos and emails in them when sending it out on twitter. I have some weird followers??

  5. and murcha... thanks for the advice, I moved about me up higher..J