George Lucas Educational Foundation
Teacher Leadership

Picks of 2006: Favorite Blog Posts's blogs launched in mid-March 2006, and their popularity has been spiraling upward, thanks to our talented bloggers and to you, our readers, who visit us daily, bookmark the blog, post your comments, and email suggestions for new postings. Here's my roundup of the picks of 2006.

    Most-Viewed Blog Postings

    These are the blog posts that received the most hits from readers:

    "Online Interactivity for Educators: A Teacher's Tour of YouTube"

    Chris O'Neal takes our challenge to surf around the hot video-sharing Web site and share his observations.

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    "A Pencil Is a Word Processor: Making the Case for Cell Phones in Class"

    Cell phones in class are controversial? High school teacher Ron Smith's first blog post set the tone for his out-of-the box postings. Sure to get the conversation going.

    "The Power of Digital Storytelling in the Classroom: Telling Stories With Technology"

    Peggy Benton's post gets people started. The comments section is rich with readers' suggestions and favorite resources.

    "Finding Pearls of Wisdom: Take a Second (or Third) Look"

    Who would have known that video excerpts set in the context of specific curricular themes would be so popular? We'll continue these thematic video groupings throughout 2007.

    "Have You Seen SketchUp?: Google's Answer to 3D Drawing"

    Jim Moulton's excellent post offers very practical ideas for using this tool in an average classroom.

    "Keys to the (Online) Kingdom: The Importance of Basic Computer Skills"

    Patsy Lanclos's post generated much attention, lots of mentions in other blogs, and even more questions about a basic skill.

    Moderator's Picks

    In no particular order, my personal favorite blog postings -- some made me laugh, others made me cry, and all of them inspired me -- follow:

    "A Shared Vision: Reading Parents' Minds"

    The first time I saw former high school principal Tony Bencivenga on video, I knew he was an inspirational leader. Meeting him in person, hearing from his former students and teachers, and having him blog on for has been a joy.

    "The Dropouts: When Kids Are Challenged and Encouraged, Great Things Happen"

    If you want to know why people stay in the teaching profession, reread Ron Smith's recounting of two special students. Maybe our most powerful posting to date.

    "Without Geography, You are Nowhere: Where in the World Is Geography in Our Schools?"

    Bonnie Bracey Sutton is a wealth of information about the best Web sites and resources for teachers.

    "Are Teacher Unions the Problem?: A Clear Look at a Cloudy Issue"

    Former school superintendent Larry Leverett's post dives deep into his personal experience, provides links to important resources, and discusses a loaded topic with intelligence and humanity.

    "When Technology Use Gets Confused: It Could Lead to a Real Find"

    My pet peeve: putting the cart before the horse.

    Which posts were your favorites, and why? What would you like to see in our blog in 2007?