A blog I love to check every week or so is BibliOdyssey – ‘Books~~Illustrations~~Science~~History~~Visual Materia Obscura~~Eclectic Bookart.’
This blog showcases images drawn from historical collections and publications that are now available on the web. As well as being visual bliss, it’s also a great resource for teachers who may wish to use historical images in their teaching – each posting explains the collection that the images are from, provides some basic details, and links to the web page of the collection.
Recent postings include images from the 14th century Das Buch der Natur (The Book of Nature); 18th and 19th century images of Printers’ Devices; and images from Racinet’s 19th century Complete Costume History.
No, I’m not talking about bookmarks for chocolate shop websites 😉
I’ve put a link in the ‘Links’ section on the right to my del.icio.us bookmarks – where I’m gathering a collection of sites with relevance to online teaching that may be of use to colleagues in my institution.
If you’re not familiar with del.icio.us or similar social bookmarking sites, it’s a web-based service where individuals can store their web-page bookmarks so that a) they are accessible from anywhere with an internet connection, and b) they can be shared easily with others – friends, colleagues, students. Tags can be added to each entry for easy searching – ‘tags’ being keywords as well as categorising the entries – and a brief description of the site added. You can go to my del.icio.us site, click on a tag that corresponds with something you’re interested in, and you’ll get the list of sites that I’ve bookmarked with that tag.
How might this be useful in teaching? You can set up your own del.icio.us page (there’s no charge) and bookmark pages that are of relevance to your students. Then, rather than having to update teaching materials with the lists of URLs, you can refer students to your del.icio.us page. If you use your unit or course code as a tag, students can search even more easily for pages of relevance to their studies. (You can have multiple accounts, so that, for example, links to your family photos can be kept on a different account to your teaching links.)
In my role as an educational developer supporting a major online teaching development initiative, I’ve decided that a blog will be useful to share resources, ideas, and converse about issues with my colleagues and with the broader education community. I’ll post here about interesting resources I find, problems encountered and solutions tried, issues I’ve grappled with, and my thoughts about learning and teaching in the online environment.
Please feel welcome to comment, contribute your views and suggestions, and share your experience.