Thursday, November 5, 2009

RSS Feeds

I have been working (in the evening) this week to ensure the information I am interested in reading searches me out rather than the other way around. Using Google Reader as a gadget in my iGoogle page, I have subscribed to my favorite sites and blogs (including this one).

What is so neat about this is that because I have set iGoogle as my home page, my information appears everytime I open my matter where I am in the world--as long as I have a computer with the Internet, I have all my "stuff." (Yes, I did subscribe to The Sioux City Journal's feed) but I also have Alan November, David Warlick, and ISTE's feeds. So...tonight when I opened my browser, Layne's latest blog about his T&L Conference stared me in the face. I didn't have to go out to the WWW and check to see if anything new was posted to this blog. Time saved...and admittedly I probably wouldn't have searched it out on my own tonight.

Think of what we could do in the classroom with this. Students could filter and direct information on any topic to come straight to them...and from many different sources with different perspectives. Just think of how differently our own network news programs can present an issue; how would the same compare to a more worldly view? Subscribing to these RSS feeds can pull in that information to compare and contrast. And we all know that a lack of information is not an issue in this age. How to sort, organize, evaluate, and validate is, however. Rather than reading/regurgitating information a textbook, students are required to use higher order thinking skills. And it's free!

Another article that so magically appeared on my iGoogle home page was a neat analogy of Differentiated Instruction to how the National Weather Service presents its online info. Check it out:

Jo Dee

1 comment:

  1. JoDee, I love RSS!! I like what you noted about students - It would be great if they all had email, communication would be even easier if teachers blog and the RSS feeds to student's email.....
    I've got some blogging to do today, so watch your feeds :)