CTRL-ALT-DELiver 22 looks at Boot2 Gecko, Storybird and ImaginationSoup
It’s only February, and it is well worth being slightly behind, so I wanted to direct you to the Center for Performance and Learning Technologies list of Top 100 Tools for Learning in 2011. Although you may be familiar with a number of the tools, you may not have heard about StoryBird. StoryBird allows for collaboration on writing a story with wonderful illustrations. As such, it not only provides a great outlet for budding authors, but for aspiring illustrators, as well. Check out The Trouble with School Is by lneumann with illustrations by Irisz Agocs , a whimsical story about learning with equally whimsical drawings. If you have used StoryBird in a unique way, drop me a line and let me know so that I can share it with the listeners.
Follow up ScoopIt on MentorMob
This week’s pick is The Seems by John Hulme and Michael Wexler
Ever wonder where your dreams come from? Or what caused those 10 inches of rain last Tuesday? Or who picks the color of autumn leaves? Brecker Drane knows, because he knows about The Seems. And soon you will, too. The Seems is the world responsible for making our world work. From the Department of Weather to the Department of Time, The Seems keep everything running – just the way we like it. But every so often, something goes wrong, and a Fixer is sent in to take care of the problem. On Becker’s very first Mission, a Glitch crops up in the Department of Sleep, and Becker quickly realizes that this is no routine assignment. Is it a mechanical breakdown in the Dreamatorium? Or perhaps it’s The Tide, an underground organization bent on destroying The Seems…and taking over the world. Being a Fixer may be the coolest job ever, but it’s no walk in the park. And Becker is sure hoping that his first Mission won’t be his last.
As Michael Wexler’s biography on Amazon states, “Michael L. Wexler was born on tax day (April 15), 1970 and thus, was written off from a very young age.” And John Hulme’s biography on the official Seems Website says “After graduating from the University of Michigan with a degree in Sports Management & Communications that proved useless, John William Hulme IV found success in a wide variety of jobs, including envelope stuffer, professional movie extra, and independent blood delivery contractor.”
I think that reading their bios, gives you a flavor of the writing. As a 5th grade teacher, I am always on the lookout for great examples of figurative writing for my students. The Seems is one of my favorite books to go to for awesome imagery. The concept itself, a world responsible for making our world work, is so creative and wonderful. Whenever I get one of my higher level readers to pick it up, they are captivated by the Seems, and want to become a Fixer. Follow him @JHulmeIV on Twitter and check out the Seems website at TheSeems.Com
And now for our feature on KidLit
Melissa Taylor @ImaginationSoup on Twitter is a mom of two girls, an educator with an M.A. in Education, a freelance writer, and a passionate advocate for literacy and high-quality education. She is also the creator of the award winning Imagination Soup Blog at ImaginationSoup.NET. Since this is my focus on KidLit section, although I hate too, I am just going to have to narrow my discussion of her blog down to her Reading section. In particular, I wanted to share with you a post about 8 Reasons Why Fairy Tales Are Essential to Childhood. Although supporting her stance with quotes from wonderful authors like G.K. Chesterton and Neil Gaiman, Melissa Taylor really strikes a home run with the quote from Albert Einstein.
“If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales.”
― Albert Einstein
From common language to teaching us to enjoy cross-cultural similarities, Fairy Tales are an important part of our literary heritage. You’ll have to read the post to see all 8 of the great reasons why.
That wraps it up for this episode of the CTRLALTDELIVER Podcast. You can find me on Twitter at @CTRLALTDELIVER