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Kindness Inspires Kindness March 10, 2013


Every once in a while, you come across an idea that has been shared that has you saying, “Wow!  I have got to do this!”  It can come in the form of a trip, an activity ~ or a day.  A day that inspires you to do things outside of your normal routine or maybe even outside your comfort zone.  Back in the beginning of January, I came across just one of those ideas.  I was reading posts on the Random Acts of Kindness Facebook Foundation page when I came across a blog post from Making Life Whimsical

As I read ~ hook, line and sinker ~ I knew this was something I wanted to do.  I contacted Amy from MLW to ask her if it would be okay to borrow her idea and the name, Kindness Inspires Kindness, because her day inspired me.  I posted on Facebook about wanting to organize and carry out the day, and I ended up with The Giving Crew.  This one shared post from Amy has generated 8 other Kindness Inspires Kindness days in my circle of friends.  Social media does have its pitfalls, for sure; but there are certainly some incredible things about it as well!

We met in January to have a planning meeting to decide what we wanted to do, where we wanted to go, and to pick the date.  With a little over 6 weeks, the most amazing day was organized and carried out.  Many people contributed (the Academy Thank You list will follow at the end of the blog).  Facebook posts were shared, and donations of pet food, books, items came.  Last Sunday, we met to sort out and organize all the items for KIK.

And so, without further adieu, I bring you our day ~ Kindness Inspires Kindness in the Capital Region.

(Full gallery of photos on Facebook.)

First stop was Bob’s Diner in Watervliet. Our morning started at 8:30 am for breakfast to get the much needed energy for our day’s events.  I purchased 5 $10 gift certificates to Bob’s to be handed out.  Maddie, Amelia and Melissa handed them out to people we selected.  At first when the certificates were given, the looks on the people’s faces were a little skeptical.  But the skepticism turned into big, appreciative smiles (as well as a few thumbs up after the fact).


Next up was the Unity House/Bethany House in Troy.  We brought care bags to the shelter ~ 19 bags for men, 19 for women and 12 for children.  Beyond the sweet comments of the young woman who greeted us to accept the donations ~ was an incredibly sweet moment when Maddie handed one of the young boys his own care bag.  The smile on his face happens to be one of those that will be burned in my memory of the day.


Men’s Bags:


Women’s Bags:


Children’s Bags:


It’s Laundry Time!  We dropped off a little donation at the Green Island Laundromat – interestingly, even though machines were going, we were the only souls in the place.  Easy to share our kindness and leave!

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Our next stop was to For Your CANvenience.  Many people in the Capital Region may have been seeing posts and fundraising events for a young woman by the name of Kristy Cavanaugh Scalise.  Kristy, is a young woman from Watervliet, who was recently diagnosed with breast cancer during her 2nd trimester of her pregnancy.  I saw a posting on FB that For Your CANvenience set up a fund (#DG2498) for people to bring cans and bottles there in her name.  We pooled our cans and bottles and dropped them off as a donation to Kristy.  I can’t remember if any of the Crew actually knows Kristy – but we do know cancer and the exhausting affect it has physically, emotionally and financially.  Every penny helps … or in this case every can and bottle helps.



Just up the road was our next stop, Starbucks to share some Kindness.  We were given a gift card to Starbucks.  We went through the drive through to give the card and watched as the surprised faces were told it’s already been paid for.  The first car pulled up to let us for a quick chat.

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On our way to our next stop we saw two people to share a little kindness with – Mr. Liberty and just a random woman crossing the street.  We gave them a gift certificate to Stewarts for coffee and a lottery ticket – hope they were both winners!

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Next on the agenda was a stop at at the Hudson Mohawk Humane Society.  Here we met some soft and furry new friends who are waiting for someone to make them a part of their family (my personal favorite was Scottie – if my heart didn’t belong to Coco, and if she wasn’t part of our family … Scottie would have been coming home with us).  Aside from food donations, the shelters can always use empty shoe boxes, bleach, newspapers, pillows, towels, blankets, hand sanitizer – check out their needs page or contact them to see what you can contribute.  When you go, you may find yourself a new member of the family!

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Not done yet!  We headed to D7 at Albany Medical Center to the Children’s unit.  This stop included bringing bucket and box loads of books, magazines, coloring books, crayons, reading books, sketch pads, crossword puzzle books, word search books and Sodoku books for patients and their families.  We couldn’t forget the wonderful nurses station who provide care to the patients!  They got a delectable tray of my mother’s home baked cookies (those who have had them know, this is an awesome treat!), along with baked goods from Freihofer, hand lotions, hand sanitizer, candy and chocolate.  A special thanks to Ms. Trawinski, Art Teacher at Blue Creek Elementary for having the kids make cards that we could distribute at Albany Med and at the VA to bring a little get well cheer!

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Time to re-energize ~ we enjoyed a relaxing lunch at the Recovery Room Sports Grill across the street from Albany Med before we were off to our next stop …


The Albany Stratton VA Hospital around the corner.  We walked into the building and weren’t quite sure where to go, and we had not planned on a particular unit or floor to visit.  As we were looking around for a directory, enter Henry into our day.  Henry was a maintenance man at the VA and asked if we needed help.  We told him we just wanted to bring a few things to an area of the hospital and asked him where his favorite floor/unit was.  He directed us to 9C.  When we got in the elevator we saw the directory and it was mentioned to maybe go to the oncology wing … but we decided there was a reason we ran into Henry, and why he sent us to 9C.  9C has an official name, Hero’s Way, appropriate, don’t you think?  Our hearts were a bit overwhelmed, to say the least. We delivered crossword puzzle books, word search books and more cards.  We walked around and delivered them to the veterans sitting in the common room and gave the nurses their goodies as well.

One of the nurses mentioned we needed to goto see Tiny, who was still in his room.  From the appearance, Tiny was a WWII veteran, a gentle giant from the greatest generation.  He literally lit up when all 12 of us walked in, “What are you girls doing here?”  We told him that we just wanted to stop down to see him, say hello and thank him for his service ~ there were hugs, there were some tears ~ including some from Tiny.  We were brought to 9C for a reason.

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We were able to pull our emotions together, to head off to the next stop … the Marjorie Doyle Alzheimer’s Center in Cohoes to play Bingo with the residents.  We had a great time playing bingo (I was able to be the caller with some wonderful help and guidance from Julia.)  Here we brought prizes for the bingo game – plus replenishment of prizes they could use for the future ~ and yes, more nursing station treats!

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Not tired yet ~ Still a few more things on the agenda!  We headed off to Carol’s Pizza in Wynantskill to pick up some of her delicious pizzas.  We delivered the pizzas and some Freihofer treats to the Watervliet Fire Department and the Green Island Fire Department.  A little thank you to the firefighters.

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Thanks to a donation of a Gift Certificate to Red Lobster, we were off to see who was going to be the lucky recipient of the gift card.  As we pulled into the lot, I could see the lucky recipient.  Sandy and Amelia delivered for us.  The woman did not want to accept it ~ but then graciously accepted with smiles.


And a few more notables for the day.  A couple weeks ago we adopted a soldier from the Adopt a US Soldier site.  The soldier we adopted (who is currently serving in Afghanistan) enjoys soccer.  Coincidence???  Not sure … but as my dear friend keeps reminding me, we have no control over these things – it’s all part of something greater.  Our soldier had his care package mailed yesterday, soccer ball, socks, shin guards ~ and a couple treats.  Hopefully, he and others will find their way back to the states soon!


A donation to alma maters ~ because the money is used toward programs and scholarships ~ that aids those who are in need.  SUNY Empire State College and Hudson Valley Community College.


And the addendum to the day happens bright and early this morning (Monday).  My first stop of the morning was to  New York Oncology Hematology Latham Cancer Center to deliver Chemo Care bags for patients, treat trays and a care basket for the nurses and staff.  I should have had reinforcements with me here ~ my heart was heavy going in … and heavier coming out.  The appreciation from the women at the desk who helped me bring everything in was wonderful, but the heart certainly hurts after this stop.  Then I delivered treat trays and baskets to The Hope Club/American Cancer Society and to the Seton Health/St. Mary’s Radiology and ER Departments.   A hug from my wonderful friend Margaret (and part of the Giving Crew) was what I needed to kick start my day into work. 

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It has been debated and said that when one posts what they did, it somewhat defeats the purpose.  As with many things, there are two sides to this view.  I saw the posting from Amy a couple months ago, and it inspired me and others to do this day and others like it.  The results of this day were just too great, not to share.  

Now – the Academy thank you list – those who helped prepare, those who donated – what you did was a part of something that was one of the best days I have ever spent – and was blessed to have spent it with some amazing people!

Thank you to:  My parents, Freihofer/Bimbo Bakeries, Joe, Mark, Joseph, Lynn, Telma, Michelle, Patty, Gloria, Gaylen, Nikki, Mary, Beth, Google, Carol, Ms. Trawinski and students at Blue Creek Elementary ~ and if I missed anyone, I will continue to add.

Stay tuned ~ The Giving Crew and kindness will be coming around again.

The Giving Crew

Anita, Victoria, Adriana, Melissa, Katie, Carol, Margaret, Kim, Jenn, Sandy, Amelia, Kristin and Maddie


Social and Community Informatics Course January 2, 2011

Filed under: Community Service,Education,Social/Community Informatics — Anita DeCianni-Brown @ 4:17 pm
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Last year I took a course in Digital Storytelling – it was one of the 1st courses I took at ESC, and really loved the course!  It was through Digital Storytelling and the blog that Professor Mackey kept, that I found out about the Social and Community Informatics course he taught in the past.  I was able to arrange taking this course as an Independent Study, though my personal two cents ~ this should be a general course offering, and a required one at that.


Having a bit of experience when it comes to higher education, I know each college has their own core curriculum.  I work at a major university in the capital region; my daughters are and have done the college searches.  There are the general courses that all schools pretty much require – English – Composition and Literature; Math; Science; Social Science; Humanities; Language; Arts; American History; World History.  Then there are schools that have their own requirements such as Theology, Women’s Issues, Philosophy, to name a few.


I’d like to make a plea to colleges, in particular to ESC, to offer the Social and Community Informatics course as a required course (or at the very least, a general offering as opposed to Independent Study).  Pulled from my learning contract, “The purpose of the independent study is to examine the topic of social and community informatics from an interdisciplinary perspective, using a service learning model.  According to Rob Kling (1999) social informatics is “the interdisciplinary study of the design, uses and consequences of information technologies that takes into account their interaction with institutional and cultural contexts.” In addition, the Journal of Community Informatics, defines “community informatics” as “the study and the practice of enabling communities with Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs).” Through readings in the field of information science and informatics, as well as a field study observation, and service learning project, this study will analyze a range of ICTs within social and community contexts.”

During the course of the semester, in addition to the readings and keeping this blog, I was required to do a Field Study and a Service Learning project.  For my field study, I selected the Regional Food Bank of NENY.  I interviewed Mark Quandt, the Executive Director, and was filled with information about everything the Food Bank does.  In addition to finding out what they did, I found out the staggering statistics of need – in 2007, 18 million pounds of food was distributed; at year end 2010, over 24 million pounds was distributed … a 25% increase in 3 years.  For my Service Learning project, I selected the Green Island Food Pantry.  There, I helped distribute flyers about the food drive, volunteered for the food drive, sorted and organized food donations, prepared baskets for Thanksgiving and Christmas, delivered baskets and created a Facebook page for the Pantry.


Why my plea?  Because there are those in our communities, in our regions, in our world that need our help.  Courses like this can promote the need that is out there, and the good that is done to help others.  Through ICT’s one can search for projects to become involved in, they can become inspired by the work that others do.  When I wrote my Pay it Forward blog post, in less than 5 minutes, I was able to find the inspiring videos that I posted.  I could have posted hundreds ~ and maybe one of those ideas would serve to inspire another person to make a difference.


I mentioned to Professor Mackey that the one thing I would change about the course would be that I liked the interaction with other students.  Maybe something I read, or did, another student might have a suggestion on how to improve; maybe I’d be inspired by someone else’s idea on a new way to help ~ or vise versa.  Gandhi said, “Be the change you want to see in the world.”  Courses like this let us do just that.  In the spirit of Paying it Forward, if 25 or 50 (or more) students each semester selected a cause, and volunteered 30+ hours to that organization cause … think of the good that would come out of it.


Visions and Actions; Focus and Perspective


Bradley states, “Visions and actions can be formulated in various ways and with various focuses and perspectives – physical and psychosocial life environment, human needs, human requirements and human rights.  These are and will be challenged in the ICT society with opportunities and risks.  We have new chances to deepen human qualities and social qualities, and bring people around the world closer together.” (p. 234)


In wrapping up my blog entries for my Social and Community Informatics course, I find like with all my other courses, sad to see it over ~ yet I’ve come away with a whole new breadth of what I want to do, what I want to accomplish.  I have a Bucket List for 2011 that ICTs will play a major part in.


#1 – I will finish my Bachelors by the end of the summer.  Possibly, soon after that, I may pursue my Masters.  In an ICT society, I have been able to complete 12 courses since Fall of 2009, with another 4 slated for the upcoming semester. Through Empire State College (ESC), I’ve been in classes with people in various parts of the country and around the world.  One of my professors is even located in Florence, Italy.


#2 – Create a photo blog.  Similar to the premise of the movie Julie and Julia.  It’s going to be a “Me” thing so to speak.  I absolutely, love, love, love photography … in particular digital photography.  There are so many styles and techniques to be able to experiment with.  It will be a photo a day, and maybe at the end I’ll make my own little coffee table book.


#3 – My family plans on hosting another exchange student.  Remembering back to the early 80’s when I was in high school and we hosted a student.  I believe ‘snail mail’ allowed us 1 or 2 letter exchanges before Fabiola arrived.  Now, with the use of Facebook and Skype, finding out about our student and her finding out about us can be done quickly and easily.  Her family and friends will be able to keep track of her through digital pictures posted to Facebook and Webshots.   “We have new chances to deepen human qualities and social qualities, and bring people around the world, closer together.”  (p. 234)  Sending your under 18-year old child half way around the world to a family you have never met before is a stressful and brave action.  I’m glad that there are these venues that can make those at home feel a little more connected.


#4 – Surpassing my fundraising goal for the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life, from my 2010 mark.  By one month into 2010, 4 people I knew were diagnosed with cancer.  By the end of the year, I truly lost track of the number of new cases I heard about ~ and sadly, there were those who lost their battle as well.  Raising money for ACS is only a small thing that can help them carry on their services to patients and families.


I set a personal goal of $1,500 for last year.  I sent emails to businesses around the greater Capital District.  I ended up with over 40 wonderful prizes!  By ways of my blog, my fundraiser page and Facebook, I was able to promote the sales of the raffle tickets and ended up raising $1,492.


#5 – Still turning to social informatics/social media ~ I will continue to promote activities surrounding volunteer opportunities and needs with the food pantry and ACS.  But, I also plan to find a new cause or two to add.  Paying it Forward is my motto for the new year, new decade.  Not everything costs money, not everything needs to be a financial donation (though if one has the ability ~ let them keep coming in!).  The donation of your time can be a gift that money can’t match.


Sit down at your computer, Google “Volunteer Opportunities” and see what you come up with.  Or, go to Volunteer Match, where you can search by geographic location or volunteer opportunity.  I’ll close with one of my favorite songs.  It inspires me with a vision and to take action; it gives me a focus and puts things in perspective.  There are so many opportunities to make brighter tomorrows for someone’s bleak today.

Goo Goo Dolls, Better Days


Home of the Future November 29, 2010

Bradley’s chapter on Home of the Future was incredibly interesting.  She discusses the changes in the home, as well as the possibilities of the changes for the future.  A cross-disciplinary research study was conducted over the course of four years on Home of the Future and the ICT.  In 1999 it was conducted in the United States, in 2000 in Asia in collaboration with the Swedish Trade Council and the Soul Business Innovation Group of Stockholm and in 2003 in Japan with the Swedish Institute for Future Studies.  The purpose of the study focused on ICT and changes in society and human behavior patterns in the Net era.  (p. 96)


According to the study, some of the social issues that have an affect for the role of the home in the future include:

  • New forms of living – both flexible living and stable living melding both mobile lifestyle and traditional values.
  • Concept of “Working from Home” and “Homing from Work”
  • New physical meeting places will parallel to virtual meeting places.
  • Overflow of information and communication.
  • New models for office workplaces, mini-communities.
  • Family ties strengthened, neighborhoods revitalized, cooperation with schools made easier.
  • Being “Glocal” – a combination of being both more global and more local.
  • Homes can function as virtual marketplaces.
  • Citizen’s role can be empowered with IT and provide opportunities to widen and strengthen democracy

(p. 100)


Based on the social issues above, I think of how the use of ICTs and the Home of the Future has changed, even since the writing of this book.  I’ve decided to focus on the last four items.


Family ties strengthened, neighborhoods revitalized, cooperation with schools made easier.

With my own experience, the use of ICTs has added an enhancement to my life that I didn’t have before.  By means of the ICTs, and Facebook, I have “met” several of my cousins in Italy that I never met before.  We are allowed glimpses into each others lives, whether it is from photo postings, or general postings, allowing us to connect.  On Thanksgiving this year, we had an extra special call, as we were able to Skype with the exchange student we had living with us a couple years ago.  Talking to someone on the phone is one thing, being able to see them and watch their mannerisms is such a wonderful bonus!


Cooperation with school hit a high point for me this year, my daughter’s school rolled out the use of EdLine.  I am able to on a daily basis know every step and detail of her education, right down to the daily grades on homework assignments and class work.  (Good thing for her she is a High Honors student!)


The nature of my own classroom environment here at ESC being conducted through the use of computers is something I would not have thought I would have done even 10 years ago.  But it allows me to complete my degree on my time, yet with rigorous and demanding work.


Homes can function as virtual marketplaces.

On the eve of Cyber Monday, the annual Monday after Black Friday holiday shopping event where online retailers thrive with the use of free shipping and a variety of deals not offered in stores.  With the use of the internet, one can do their holiday shopping and have items shipped to many different locations all with the simple click of a few buttons.  Small businesses who don’t have the advertising budget that larger businesses have can use social media to their advantage to promote the goods and services.


Target’s marketing for this year’s Black Friday shopping was nothing short of sheer genius.  Not only did the Target Lady make the commercials on television, but was on YouTube, FaceBook as people shared the commercials.



Citizen’s role can be empowered with IT and provide opportunities to widen and strengthen democracy

I think that the use of IT and the affect that it had on the 2008 election, and looking ahead to the 2012 elections will be staggering.  In addition to their own websites, candidates use sits such as Facebook and Twitter, as well as blogging sites, to gain support and discussion legislation that is important to them.  For the November ’10 midterm elections, where much was at stake for control of the House, Facebook became a reminder to vote, and served as a gold star if you voted.  I received many reminders from friends about going to vote in the days leading up to the elections.


Being “Glocal” – a combination of thinking globally and acting locally.

Again, the use of the internet can inspire and create a following for a cause to serve the greater good.  It is possible that the study intended this in another way, I look at what the virtual world reveals and inspires for others to become involved.  The causes are universal, yet the grassroots efforts are what pushes to make the world a better place.  I again use Facebook, which is a clearing house for idea sharing an inspirational stories of involvement.  I’ve added a few of my favorites:


Then there are the organizations that are known world-wide, and through the use of social media and websites improve their name and image.  Most recently, I came across Macy*s pledge to donate up to $1 Million to the Make-A-Wish Foundation for each person who sends a letter to Santa either in the store or online.  It brought to mind Miracle on 34th Street and Macy*s goodwill toward the customer.  Now, it’s Macy*s goodwill toward making a brighter tomorrow or creating a lasting memory for families whose time is, sadly, limited:  http://social.macys.com/believe2010/#/events/santa-national-tour


My hope is, that the use of use of social media and networking sites will continue the domino affect and doing good/helping the cause will make the world a better place – think Glocally.

Bradley, Gunilla.  Social and Community Informatics  Humans on the Net.  New York:  Routledge



Global Villages November 4, 2010

In the Spring 2010 semester, I took the Advanced Visual Literacy course.  I did a research paper on Marshall McLuhan, his thoughts on the Medium being the Message and the Global Village.  I was fascinated by the Global Village as it was presented in the 1960s.  Fifty years later, his theory of the Global Village seems to be a part of everyday life.  Through technological villages, this vast world of ours becomes smaller and smaller each day.

In the McLuhan’s Global Village, society moves away from being individuals and becomes part of groups of like interests.  These groups become a bonding of sorts that connect people who may not have connected in other circumstances.

Think Facebook.  After doing my research for my paper, I had to wonder how many of these social networking sites based their initial concepts off of his thoughts of the village.  Facebook and other social media sites build these common areas (both foolish and serious) of like interests.  Facebook takes all different arenas and provides a solid line of newsfeeds.  I can log on in the morning, see what’s up with friends, find out what sales and promotions my favorite stores are having, find out any important information or news that is going on, I can find out what is going on with my sports teams, politicians, and what headlines the newspapers are touting.  When my daughter was in Italy in May, she went out to dinner with our cousins.  With that hand-held ICT, the took a photo with the camera phone, uploaded it to Facebook … and moments later, halfway around the world, I felt I was there.

Using the power of social media, politicans have taken their campaigns to the internet more and  more.  Attempts to win voters over by different political campaigns by advertisements, videos and messages about the candidates and party were found all around.  This arena of the Global Village grouped like frustrations, like supporters into larger groups.  Come 2012 Presidential Election, it will be interesting to see how much of a part Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc., will play in the overall campaigns.

Then there is the area of the Global Village that I use most often.  The quest for doing good.  If I see or hear of an event going on which will make someone’s life a little easier (ie. American Cancer Society Events, Northeastern NY Kidney Foundation, Food Drives anything supporting our troops), I like being able to promote it.  Anything that makes our villages just that much is worth promoting.


Learning in the 21st Century October 16, 2010

Filed under: Social/Community Informatics — Anita DeCianni-Brown @ 10:19 pm
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The more I read into this chapter, the more I found comparisons to office and educational life in the 21st Century. According to Understanding and Communicating Social Informatics, technological determinism treats ICTs as information processing systems whose technical characteristics cause specific social changes when they are adapted and used. Though it can be useful in situations, it has limited value in dynamic and complex situations that unfold over long periods of time. (p. 13)


Systems rationalism becomes a useful starting point in understanding the value of ICTs to an organization’s practices, social activities and work life. We are given examples of Social Nature of ICTs with the description of how Lotus Notes was used by an organization of consultants. Within their employee base throughout cities across the world, they could use Lotus Notes to share solutions to problems with consultants in other offices. (p. 17)


Another example used is university teaching (or for that matter, I would add teaching at any level in general). Some professors and teachers use the world wide web as a means of enhancing class materials and making it more readily available to their students.  (p. 20)  Online classrooms, it is the nature of the environment that professors prepare a curriculum that meets learning standard needs. It’s important to research materials and sites that can impact or enhance learning. Currently I am taking a photography course through ESC, The Photographic Vision. It is evident that the professor had done great research to pull together learning materials to help us develop our photographic abilities. This past week, we took a virtual field trip to the Digital Photography School (which is a wonderful wealth of information!) What is helpful in this style of learning is that we all found different areas of interest. With such vast information, part of our learning came from sites and articles that others found of interest. Of course, it’s not enough to say, “great post!” or “I like what you said.” We need to read through the information and get an understanding before responding.

The teaching style of primary and secondary education won’t change for the most part – the amount of face and interacting time between student and teacher. But the ways of delivery of information has evolved with the help of technology. In the 1990’s the use of the internet virtually brought students to places they have never and may never see with the help of video, text, images located on websites.  The 21st Century has broadened the use of the internet by being able to connect students with other classrooms across the globe by means of Skype.   SmartBoards that are finding their way into schools. Though the initial expense is high, they are definitely worth the investment.


I found two videos on the use of SmartBoards in the classroom that were interesting.  I think of the example of the business who brought in Lotus Notes to help the efficiency of their organization.  It brings to mind the current crisis in US Education.  With dwindling monetary resources, districts are forced to look outside the box to find ways to educate and engage their students.  In the case of engaging learners through technological means as an enhancement to daily learning, I believe that students will develop a broader understanding of a global society much better than they can from just a simple book inside 4 walls. For example, Skype conversations with students who are in Australia for example can connect students so they can find out first hand from people their own age, what life is like “down under.”  SmartBoards allows teachers who have developed a curriculum topic to share with other users.  They can borrow and share lesson plans in ways they were unable to in the past.


SmartBoard overview


In this first video, 5th Grade Teacher Lora Holt from LBJ Elementary in El Paso TX explains how she uses the Smart Board in her Science and Social Studies classes.  She does a brief overview of how the SmartBoards are integrated into her lessons.  In this example of classroom learning, ICTs enhance the learning experience.


SmartBoard Art Lesson


Sharon Campbell, a middle school teacher from Redwood Middle School,uses SmartBoards in her Art Class to deliver foundation learning.  In this, she and her students discuss color theory.  With the use of the Smart Board, the students take on the roles of both teacher and student as they are able to participate in delivery of the lesson.  With the use of ICTs, what used to be going to the chalkboard or dry erase board to answer a question has now advanced to a graphically appealing presentation.



Kling, R., Rosenbaum, H., Sawyer, S. Understanding & Communicating Social Informatics: A Framework for Studying and Teaching the Human Contexts of Information and Communication Technologies. 2005. New Jersey: Information Today.


The Power of Social Media September 29, 2010

Filed under: Social/Community Informatics — Anita DeCianni-Brown @ 10:00 am
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As a lead in to my side-bar top in my blog, I selected a passage from Gunilla Bradley’s, Social and Community Informatics:  Humans on the Net to focus on.  Bradley states, “If technology is used properly, it can give us more time for human contacts.”   (p. 80)   She goes on to describe scenarios that are pros and cons regarding the virtual world.  People spend enormous amounts of time in front of a computer screen.  There’s less dialogue, more text between people.  People hide behind their screen.  Some hiding from conflict, while others feel this sense of power to say to bully and degrade others.


But then, people can find a balance.  They can use the virtual world to promote and get others involved in events, that maybe they would not have know about.  Which takes me to my next blog about my project for this course.


I am working with the Green Island Food Pantry as a service project for this course.  Though I have worked on the Food Drive for 15 years now, I will be able to delve a little deeper into the inner workings of the Pantry.  I’ve put together a page on Facebook where hopefully others will post Food Drive activities they are involved in.  The one thing I have noticed in the past two years is the “power” of the social networks through the world wide web, and how one can promote the good deeds and projects that are out there.  Using Bradley’s comment, I will use the technology I have before me, promoting this event.  The days that we organize the various pieces of the drive from flyer distribution, to pick-up, organization, packing and then delivery ~ the human side and hearts will be out in full force.


Bradley, Gunilla.  Social and Community Informatics  Humans on the Net.  New York:  Routledge