Archive for June, 2010

Educators That Rock!: Marilyn Johnson

Wednesday, June 30th, 2010

Photo by Margaret Fox.

Marilyn Johnson was first introduced to libraries in high school, when she worked as a page at the Chardon Public Library in Ohio. She loved climbing into the attic to get back issues of old newspapers, but quit after being refused a nickel-an-hour raise.

Years later she wrote “This Book Is Overdue!: How Librarians and Cybrarians Can Save Us All,” examining and extolling the unseen faces and facets of the library world, and tearing down long-held stereotypes.

“[T]he truth is, with all librarians that I meet, if you think you know what type they are, if you stand there and talk to them for a little while, they’re each spectacularly individual,” Johnson told findingEducation.

Through her profiles of missionary librarians, virtual librarians, specialist librarians, archivists and even anarchist librarians, Johnson proves not only that librarians are each one of a kind, but also that they are truly irreplaceable.

To learn more about Johnson and her work visit her Web sites: This Book Is Overdue and MarilynJohnson.net.

fE: While researching your first book, “The Dead Beat: Lost Souls, Lucky Stiffs, and the Perverse Pleasures of Obituaries,” you were consistently drawn to the stories of librarians and found the seed for your next book. Why librarians?

MJ: I read a ton of librarian obituaries, and every one was different. I read about a music librarian who served the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and a British librarian who helped get films online. There was also a librarian who was a sailor on the Maine coast, and she remembered people’s favorite books 50 years after they had come to her library. She was the heart and soul of her community. (Read about more of the librarian obituaries that inspired Johnson.)

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The Answer Sheet: Week of June 19

Monday, June 28th, 2010

Did you take the Quiztory last week? Now it’s time to check your answers:

1. What battle ended the Scottish Wars of Independence? The Battle of Bannockburn

2. How long did it take a Houston jury to convict Muhammad Ali of draft evasion? 21 minutes

3. Why didn’t U.S. forces fire back at a Japanese submarine that fired on Fort Stevens, Ore.? The enemy ship was believed to be out of range, and the fort’s commander didn’t want to give away the location of U.S. defenses

4. Who is the main source of information on the mutiny of Henry Hudson’s attempt to find the Northwest Passage? Abacuk Prickett

5. Under what name was Anne Frank’s diary originally published? “Het Achterhuis” or “The Secret Annex

Related Link Resources
On This Day: England Defeats Scotland at Battle of Methven
On This Day: Muhammad Ali Convicted of Draft Evasion
On This Day: Japanese Submarine Attacks Oregon
On This Day: Henry Hudson Set Adrift by Mutineers
On This Day: Anne Frank's Diary Published

Quiztory: Week of June 19

Friday, June 25th, 2010

Test your students’ knowledge of the notable events covered in findingDulcinea’s “On This Day” column this week with Quiztory. It makes a fun extra credit assignment.

1. What battle ended the Scottish Wars of Independence?

2. How long did it take a Houston jury to convict Muhammad Ali of draft evasion?

3. Why didn’t U.S. forces fire back at a Japanese submarine that fired on Fort Stevens, Ore.?

4. Who is the main source of information on the mutiny of Henry Hudson’s attempt to find the Northwest Passage?

5. Under what name was Anne Frank’s diary originally published?

What’s Coming Up?

Next week, “On This Day”will examine President Kennedy’s “Ich bin ein Berliner” speech, the killing of Mormon Church founder Joseph Smith, the Treaty of Versailles and Einstein’s theory of special relativity. We’ll also take a look at the Supreme Court’s decision on capital punishment statues, the Battle of Gettysburg and the Continental Congress.

Related Link Resources
On This Day column

Introducing SweetSearch4Me – A Search Engine Just for Me

Thursday, June 24th, 2010

This week, Dulcinea Media launched SweetSearch4Me—a search engine for students in grades K-8.

General commercial search engines aren’t designed for young learners. What may be the best search results for adults are often difficult for young users to understand. A handful of search engines for kids have been on the market for years, but most don’t do nearly enough to ensure that high-quality content written specifically for kids is easy to find.

SweetSearch4Me searches only Web sites that our staff of research experts, librarians and teachers have evaluated and approved as high-quality content appropriate for young users. Only the best sites directed at elementary school students are included, and many of the results on the first page were created exclusively for kids.

Planning to attend the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) conference in Denver June 27-30? Visit the Yolink booth to see Mark Moran and Shannon Firth of Dulcinea Media demonstrate how SweetSearch integrates with Yolink, a “find tool” that helps you find the information you would never have found online before.

Mark and Shannon will also be previewing our SweetSearch2Day calendar product, a mash-up of all our content and the best content from around the Web that relates to each day.

We plan to spend the summer further evaluating and fine-tuning SweetSearch4Me results, and will formally release it in September 2010. In the meantime, we’d love to get your feedback. Try your own SweetSearch4Me searches and let us know what you think by e-mailing sweetsearch@dulcineamedia.com.

Travel Through US History at Gettysburg

Wednesday, June 23rd, 2010

Gettysburg is famous for its Civil War history, its 20,000-acre battlefield, dramatic stone monuments and affecting cemetery. A popular destination for schools and families with children, Gettysburg presents a wealth of educational opportunities, but is surrounded by a quaint town that allows for parental relaxation as well. Take a virtual visit to Gettysburg using the Web sites in this article, and get a pre-trip history lesson to enhance your visit.

Pennsylvania’s Storied Past

Pennsylvania was home to many important developments in early U.S. history, including crucial Civil War battles. FindingDulcinea’s Civil War States feature on Pennsylvania suggests visiting the Library of Congress Web site, which maintains a collection of portraits of named Civil War soldiers from both the Confederate and Union armies. The Library of Congress site also discusses President Lincoln’s invitation to speak at Gettysburg, and has rare documents, including the only known photo of Lincoln at the dedication of the Gettysburg cemetery, and two drafts of the Gettysburg address.

The Battle of Gettysburg began on July 1, 1863, when Gen. Robert E. Lee led his Confederate troops into what would be the bloodiest Civil War battle. At the end of three days, 50,000 troops were dead and the war had taken a turn. Union Maj. Gen. George Meade’s army defeated Lee’s troops, ending the South’s charge into northern territory.

Listen to actor Sam Waterston read Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address on NPR. The segment was taped on Nov. 19, 2003, to mark the 140th anniversary of the speech, which commemorated Union soldiers who perished in the Civil War.

Planning a Visit to Gettysburg

Frommer’s travel guide to Frederick, Md., includes a chapter on Gettysburg. Learn the lay of the massive battlefield, which is essentially a park. According to Frommer’s, riding a bike, driving a car or taking a bus tour around the park’s sloping hills and rolling valleys are the most efficient ways to take it all in.

The battlefield surrounds Gettysburg, a small town that draws tourists from around the world. Frommer’s says crowds are most heavy during the annual three-day reenactment from July 1–3, and on Remembrance Day in November. Among the more than 100 park monuments, “dedicated by various states to their military units,” the “granite-domed Pennsylvania Memorial” is the biggest and most popular among visitors.

The Gettysburg Convention & Visitors Bureau has tips and planning advice for travelers, including hotel and restaurant recommendations. Activities for traveling families and school groups are also listed. For example, take a self-guided Scenic Valley Tour through Adams Country, spanning about 35 miles north, south and west of Gettysburg. The Adams Country area is laced with bucolic orchards, and is home to historic sites like the Lower Marsh Creek Presbyterian Church, built in 1790.

The U.S. National Parks Service Gettysburg portal explains some of the most popular attractions, including a Civil War soldier exhibit. The site also covers practical information, such as fees and directions. Use National Park Service maps of Gettysburg and view maps of the Battle of Gettysburg.

If you’re looking for a general hotel or flight search Web site, visit findingDulcinea’s Travel Web Guide, or consult Gorp for a list of campgrounds in the Gettysburg area, with descriptions, amenities and booking information.

Gettysburg Reenactment Video

Civil War Hotel has a video of a Gettysburg reenactment that, though surrounded by ads, offers an excellent pre-visit perspective on the attraction.

The Answer Sheet: Week of June 12

Monday, June 21st, 2010

Did you take the Quiztory last week? Now it’s time to check your answers:

1. Where were Nelson Mandela and other African National Congress members sentenced to life in prison? Robben Island

2. Who wrote the first published account of Benjamin Franklin’s kite experiment? Joseph Priestley

3. A photo of whose dying body became a symbol of the Soweto uprising in South Africa? 13-year-old Hector Pieterson

4. Who honored Vlad Dracula as a national hero in Romania’s Hall of Fame? Former Romanian President Nicolae Ceausescu

5. How did Dowager Empress Longyu rise to power? She bore the Xianfeng emperor’s only son

Related Link Resources
On This Day: Nelson Mandela Sentenced to Life in Prison
On This Day: Benjamin Franklin Performs Kite Experiment
On This Day: Soweto Uprising Begins With Violence During Student ...
On This Day: Vlad the Impaler Launches “Night Attack” on Turkish Army
On This Day: Chinese Empress Longyu Orders All Foreigners Killed

Quiztory: Week of June 12

Friday, June 18th, 2010

Test your students’ knowledge of the notable events covered in findingDulcinea’s “On This Day” column this week with Quiztory. It makes a fun extra credit assignment.

1. Where were Nelson Mandela and other African National Congress members sentenced to life in prison?

2. Who write the first published account of Benjamin Franklin’s kite experiment?

3. A photo of whose dying body became a symbol of the Soweto uprising in South Africa?

4. Who honored Vlad Dracula as a national hero in Romania’s Hall of Fame?

5. How did Dowager Empress Longyu rise to power?

What’s Coming Up?

Next week, “On This Day” will examine Nelson Mandela, “Miranda” warnings, Benjamin Franklin’s kite experiment and Captain Bligh’s landing on Timor. We’ll also take a look at Vlad the Impaler, Chinese Empress Longyu and the first hijacking of a commercial flight.

Related Link Resources
On This Day column

Teachers Find Innovative Travel Opportunities

Wednesday, June 16th, 2010

Ithaca, N.Y., presented its fourth annual Winter Recess from Feb. 12-21, featuring discounted travel for teachers and their family members, according to Budget Travel. Winter Recess may be long gone, but there are plenty of other opportunities for educators to travel frugally this summer.

Explorica is a travel company catering to teachers. Their selection of tours, regional experts around the world, planning tools and social networking applications help ensure an immersive international (or U.S. travel) experience for teachers and their students. Explorica is affiliated with several high quality tourist organizations, including the Student Youth Travel Association and the National Tour Association.

Teachers Travel Web connects teachers around the world for bed and breakfast-style stays, home-exchanges and house-sitting posts. A yearly membership fee of about $65 is required to access listings, and any teacher, educator, trainer or counselor is eligible for membership. Teacher Travel Web was started years ago by a New Zealand couple.

In an article for Suite 101, English teacher and freelance writer Thadra Petkus offers ideas for teachers looking for ways to travel abroad. She presents summer and spring break options, and tips for saving or making money while traveling as a teacher. Hobbies, such as photography or writing, can be lucrative for traveling teachers. Teaching abroad or chaperoning student tours can help teachers finance international excursions as well.

New Orleans teems with intriguing historic sites, unique architecture, an eclectic array of museums and enough personality to keep even the most jaded student enthralled. Plan an educational tour of New Orleans, or get ideas for a field trip to the Crescent City.

The Answer Sheet: Week of June 5

Monday, June 14th, 2010

Did you take the Quiztory last week? Now it’s time to check your answers:

1. It is believed that Sirhan Sirhan assassinated Robert F. Kennedy for what reason? Revenge for Kennedy’s support of Israel

2. Where did the Germans think the Allies were planning to invade Normandy? Pas de Calais

3. In Cohen v. California, why did Justice Harry Blackmun argue that Cohen’s action wasn’t protected by the First Amendment? Because it “was mainly conduct and little speech

4. Who tried to launch a rocket full of mail between two Scottish islands in the 1930s? Gerhard Zucker

5. What is the name of the cove where some of the pioneers of the Mormon handcart expedition sought shelter during a snowstorm? Martin’s Cove

Related Link Resources
On This Day: Robert F. Kennedy Shot
On This Day: Allied Forces Invade Normandy on D-Day
On This Day: Supreme Court Rules to Protect Written Profanity
On This Day: US Postal Service Attempts “Missile Mail” for First ...
On This Day: Mormon Handcart Expedition Begins

Quiztory: Week of June 5

Friday, June 11th, 2010

Test your students’ knowledge of the notable events covered in findingDulcinea’s “On This Day” column this week with Quiztory. It makes a fun extra credit assignment.

1. It is believed that Sirhan Sirhan assassinated Robert F. Kennedy for what reason?

2. Where did the Germans think the Allies were planning to invade Normandy?

3. In Cohen v. California, why did Justice Harry Blackmun argue that Cohen’s action wasn’t protected by the First Amendment?

4. Who tried to launch a rocket full of mail between two Scottish islands in the 1930s?

5. What is the name of the cove where some of the pioneers of the Mormon handcart expedition sought shelter during a snowstorm?

What’s Coming Up?

Next week, “On This Day” will examine Nelson Mandela, “Miranda” warnings, Benjamin Franklin’s kite experiment and Captain Bligh’s landing on Timor. We’ll also take a look at Vlad the Impaler, Chinese Empress Longyu and the first hijacking of a commercial flight.

Related Link Resources
On This Day column