Posted by dsgran
All in all, this has been a pretty good week. Its hard to complain when your at a conference in Borneo, and there were some great offerings here at EARCOS, more than worth staying indoors for.
My friend Kendra Farell from the International School of Beijing did a great presentation on web 2.0 for art educators, and hopefully created some more momentum for her site, Asia Region Art Educators (which she described as a "child of Art Ed 2.0"). There was also a great discussion among the participants about the pros and cons of Wikis vs. Ning sites for students. Wikis seem to work better for constructing linear and more collaborative assignments, but Ning sites seem to be slicker, and more discussion oriented.
I also got to see a great presentation by another friend, Glenda Baker of the American School in Japan - she presented with english teacher Karen Noll about cross assessment in art and english classes. They're presentation touched on some key issues of new literacies. So much of today's online communication is a combination of text and image that fluency in this combination of media is critical. They referred to Kairos, an interesting online journal of technology and pedagogy that deals with just this sort of issue. Looks like there's a lot of interesting things to explore at that site. Their website contains much of the information contained in the presentation- especially worth looking at is their examples of voicethread in the art room.
Keynote presenter John Liu did a heartbreaking presentation about desertification and deforestation, and its effects of global warming - and what it would take to change the trend... if we wanted to make the effort. Throughout his talk he showed video that he took throughout his travels in China and Africa.
Stephen Buchmann, an etymologist and photographer provided a session in which he gave some great tips for insect and wildlife photography as well as some general digital camera tips. Some interesting tips I picked up: For best landscapes, use the smallest or next to smallest fstop. For wildlife and portrait photography- use the largest/next to largest fstop, a fast shutter speed, and focus on the eyes. Check out Heliconsoft for software to work with hyperfocul and multifocul images. Finally, I learned that you can do very cool photography using a flatbed scanner (the bigger the better), but I'll probably never get the school to order a top of the line Creo scanner- they scan at 5600 dpi... but cost about fifty thousand a pop.