Gary Stager on last-minute gift ideas: if you're looking for a last-minute gift idea for a friend or colleague, why not consider one of my favorite things?Books
What do YOU Mean by Learning by Seymour Sarason (Heinemann) At 84, prolific author Seymour Sarason may have written the best book of his career. The psychologist who has written about the "predictable failure of school reform" for decades explains that educational progress is impossible until we each make an effort to define what we mean by learning. Such simple conversation is a perquisite per·qui·site
1. A payment or profit received in addition to a regular wage or salary, especially a benefit expected as one's due. See Synonyms at right.
2. A tip; a gratuity.
3. to the creation of productive contexts for learning. Nearly every sentence in this book is quotable quot·a·ble
Suitable for or worthy of quoting: a quotable slogan; a quotable pundit.
Stupidity and Tears: Teaching and Learning in Troubled Times by Herbert Kohl (New Press) Herb Kohl's latest masterpiece should inspire educators to keep up the fight in the face of increasing challenges. The book helps explain the often paradoxical forces confusing teachers by hypothesizing that people trapped in a dysfunctional system are prone to behave in ways contrary to their own self-interest. Kohl's tales of needy students and committed teachers remind us of why we chose to be educators.
The Big Picture: Educating is Everyone's Business by Dennis Littky with Samantha Grabelle (ASCD ASCD Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development
ASCD Association of Service & Computer Dealers International
ASCD American Society of Computer Dealers
ASCD All Source Correlated Database
ASCD Advanced Software Concepts Department
ASCD Asset Status Card ) Dennis Littky's most recent school, "The Met," is often hailed as a successful model of high school innovation. Littky is now involved in the sealing up of his educational theories in schools across the country through the Big Picture Company.
Another generation of kids deserves to fall in love with Homer Price by Robert McCloskey (Puffin Books); Kids love The Scrambled States of America by Laurie Keller (Henry Holt), the Time Warp time warp
A hypothetical discontinuity or distortion occurring in the flow of time that would move events from one time period to another or suspend the passage of time. Trio books by John Sciezka (Puffin) and The Hoboken Chicken Emergency by Daniel Pinkwater (Alladin).
Keyspan USB USB
in full Universal Serial Bus
Type of serial bus that allows peripheral devices (disks, modems, printers, digitizers, data gloves, etc.) to be easily connected to a computer. Server www.keyspan.com
This ingenious little box allows you to connect up to four USB printers A printer that plugs into the USB port of a computer. See USB. and scanners to one network connection so you may control the devices from any computer on the local network. Mine works like a charm, although it would be nice to have some documentation.
Airport Express www.apple.com
This low-cost pocketsize device does three jobs. It's a wireless network router, a wireless repeater A device that extends the range of a wireless network. The repeater is typically placed half way between the access point and the wireless computers and printers. It is a stand-alone device that only requires power and does not connect to the wired network. See wireless router. for extending a network or a way to play your iTunes music wirelessly when you connect a pair of speakers to the Airport Express.
Contribute 3 www.macromedia.com
Contribute may be used to simply create beautiful Web sites, based on built-in templates, but it's real power is in allowing others to customize existing sites.
Have a fifth grader design a Web site with Dreamweaver of Contribute and then give teachers or parent volunteers a copy of Contribute 3. With the software they may add pages, update content and publish it on the Web without harming the site.
Toon Boom Studio & Toon Boom Express www.toonbboom.com
Toon Boom Express and its big brother, Toon Boom studio, are affordable tools for the hidden animator in all of us. You will not believe the professional-quality animation you can create.
Salling Clicker Salling Clicker is a suite of computer programs to enable the remote control of a Macintosh or Windows PC from a mobile phone. It is written and maintained by Jonas Salling from Sweden through the company Salling Software. www.salling.com
Salling Clicker is a $20 miracle for Bluetooth cell phones. It turns your phone or PDA (Personal Digital Assistant) A handheld computer for managing contacts, appointments and tasks. It typically includes a name and address database, calendar, to-do list and note taker, which are the functions in a personal information manager (see PIM). into a remote control capable of controlling all sorts of software, peripherals, and best of all, your multimedia presentations.
MicroWorlds EX Robotics www.microworlds.com
MicroWorlds EX Robotics is the latest generation of Logo-based multimedia authoring and learning software for children. The software now includes the ability to integrate LEGO or Cricket robotics in your interdisciplinary projects.
Slick Volumes 7-8 www.geethree.com
These new plug-ins from GeeThree offer a zillion impressive new effects, transitions and titles for enhancing iMovie productions. The ability to superimpose su·per·im·pose
tr.v. su·per·im·posed, su·per·im·pos·ing, su·per·im·pos·es
1. To lay or place (something) on or over something else.
2. a scoreboard on your movies justifies the entire investment.
Gary Stager, email@example.com, is editor-at-large and an adjunct professor at Pepperdine University Pepperdine University is a private institution of higher learning affiliated with the Church of Christ in unincorporated Los Angeles County, California, United States. The university's location overlooks the Pacific Ocean and is adjacent to the city limits of Malibu. .