Welcome to my mutterings regarding my first experiences with image hosting websites! Although I do have photo galleries on my wall in Facebook, the credit goes to my friends and relatives (remember the sister in law obsessed with Flickr!). Much to the chagrin of my sister in California who is growing increasingly exasperated at snail mail, I am hopelessly pathetic at posting photos. The reason for my hesitation is two – fold. First, I have reservations about posting pics of those near and dear to me for all the world to see; second, as a Vice-Principal I spend much of my time investigating and intervening in bullying and threatening behaviours which often play out through media pictures and messages on social networking sites, thus, I have always been reluctant to expose myself to such scrutiny and access. However, inspired by this class and my goal to explore the many tools and instructional possibilities of Web 2.0, I have very much enjoyed finding out more about image hosting. What better sight to explore while trying to cross a technology goal off my bucket list, than Photobucket! Similar to Flickr it allows the user to upload photographs, title, tag, organize and creatively present the images.
Inspired by one Saturday in my hometown rink, I started snapping pictures(yes, only in Saskatchewan can you find sticks, skates, and hockey equipment lying around an unlocked rink for any and all to use – the only rule, turn out the lights when you leave! It is this collection that I experimented in packaging in a themed slideshow. To my delight, it was relatively easy and created an effective product. Oh what I could have done with this technology in my early years of teaching Shakespeare! I could have spared my back the ache of schlepping in pounds of photoalbums and my students the strain of craning their necks to see the images! The potential for creating slideshows and images that can be made available to students with a simple electronic link opens up new and exciting dialogue opportunities. This form of blended instruction allows students to thoughtfully respond to images viewed outside the classroom on their own time, reducing the often misdirected dialogue, improving time on task, and demanding all to participate as opposed to inviting hitchhikers on the discussion.
Click on The Art of Hockey to see my themed slideshow on Photobucket. I hope you enjoy. Let me know about your experiences with image hosting sites!