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Thanks for a Great Class!

Thank you for a great class and nice participation in class as well as the Groupblog!! I hope everyone liked adding their own thoughts here and I wish you luck with finals and next quarter!

See some of you next quarter in English 1B Honors!


I just wanted to remind you all that the ePortfolio due date is approaching... here are some short yet important things to remember as you work on your ePortfolio:

~It needs to be selective, meaning....
Don't choose all of your work from this class (if your ePortfolio is about English 1A Honors, as I think Irine's is). Pick a select few and explain why you've chosen what is displayed in your ePortfolio.

~It needs to be evaluative, meaning...
Ask friends
, teachers, parents, siblings, mentors, classmates to take a look at your ePortfolio and comment on it! Ask them to give constructive feedback, not just "yeah, it's great!" comments.

Evaluate yourself and the work you've put up on your ePortfolio! Be reflective and see how you've changed and how your work, or whatever you are highlight in your ePortfolio, has changed

And to mention again, ask everyone in THIS CLASS! Everyone is working on the same thing so help each other out. If you comment on someone's ePortfolio I can bet you that they'll help you out and comment on yours as well.

Good luck! And also, if you have any questions please email me or talk to me in class (well, before or after preferably...)!


Article that may be of interest to you!

I found an article in the New York Times (online) about very recent activities with greenhouse gases. Maybe it will be of some interest to you for your paper!

You can go to the article here:

Britain Proposes Law to Curb Greenhouse Gases

Feel free to add more articles from newspapers or magazines (like we did in class today) that are relating to our upcoming essays.

(no points for this but it could potentially lead to a GREAT essay!)

Spelling Error

Maybe I should title my post "Do Students Value Spelling . . . "
I can't figure out how to edit the title, so please read Subtance as Substance.


Shortly after we read the speech that Steve Jobs gave to the graduating class at Stanford I came across a related column in the February 11 issue of "The San Jose Mercury News" (couldn't underline) titled “Do students value celebrity over substance?”. I've been meaning to post about it ever since. It turns out that Stanford had just announced their choice for this year’s commencement speaker – poet Dana Gioia. I was not familiar with him, but the article explained that Gioia graduated from Stanford as well as from Harvard Business School, went on to write three books, win the American Book Award, and become chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts. But his path to becoming a successful author was rather unique. After leaving Harvard he joined General Foods and eventually became a VP. His poetry was written after long days at the office. This way he was under no pressure to produce. He said that he “went into business to become a poet.”

To me this sounds like a rather interesting guy, but many of the Stanford seniors were not thrilled with Gioia as their commencement speaker. They were hoping for someone more famous. One student, whose family was flying in for the event, wrote, “I feel like I should buy us tickets to some other graduation ceremony. At least then they will remember the speaker many years from now.” Columnist Scott Herhold counters this with the opinion that “celebrity does not guarantee insight.” And I think that the words spoken are more important that who is speaking them. Herhold argues that Gioia does offer valuable insight – “that we are not defined by how we make our living” and your life can be prioritized so that one can make money and also be creative. Herhold thinks that Gioia has more to say than the standard “follow you dream” speech.

Hmmm, I wonder what Steve Jobs would have to say about all this. I wonder what you have to say about this. Looking ahead to your own commencement ceremony, what would you hope for in the speaker that is going to address you, your classmates, and friends and family?


I just wanted to create a place where everyone could easily ask a question or make a comment about how your own ePortfolios are going.

Do you have any questions? Any problems? Any amazing ePortfolio platforms you could recommend?

Are you getting stuck on what topic to choose for your ePortfolio? Are you not even to the point of choosing a topic, still worrying about which platform would work?

Any updates on your ePortfolios would be great to put here!
I've read only two other ePortfolio entries this week and they were both art related. Therefore, I felt that I MUST tell you guys about the class I took last year at Foothill. It is ONLY offered in the Spring semester but it is a must for all of you "serious" artists out there. In the class, you spend time refining your goals and working on creating a packet that will help you achieve them.

Here are the class specifics from the catalog:

Preparation, organization, and assembly of previous and current artwork to create a cohesive studio art portfolio. This course enables students and practicing artists the preparation in creating a professional portfolio for transfer into higher institutions, career opportunities, art exhibitions, art competitions, funding, or professional practice. Documenting work, writing artist statements, practice interviews, and assembling portable portfolios are included in this course.
One hour lecture, five hours lecture-laboratory
0269 ART -072.-01 LEC 1:30PM- 4:20 Th CIMENT 4002
LEC 1:30PM- 4:20 T CIMENT 1801

Top Ten Tech Tips Wiki

I talked briefly about the wiki I've created for a top ten tips packet, like Scott's, but online and specifically about technology! I don't think I got into enough detail about the wiki in class so here's some more explanation.

What is a wiki? For figuring this question out I figured I could just search for 'wiki definition' on wikipedia (which is also a wiki). For a definition as well as history of wikis and lots more you can go here. An easy definition for a wiki is that it is a webpage that can be edited by anyone on the Internet. It's sort of like a community/group blog.

What is the Top Ten Tech Tips Wiki about? I've created this wiki for everyone to add their own tips about different technology-related things. For example, you  can add tips about topics to blog about, reasons to blog or how to effectively search using Google. You can easily add a new page for a new list of tips if you want or you can just add on to an already created list of tips.

Where is the wiki? You can go to: http://toptentechtips.stikipad.com to start adding to the wiki!

Will I receive extra credit for doing this? Yes! (There is a maximum of 20 points for extra credit in our class.)

If anyone wants to, I am available for having a short in-person or via email tutorial on how to do simple edits on the wiki (add a new page, add a new tip, things like that)

And remember, you can always ask me questions on our Groupblog (here) or via email (cassie@dara-abrams.com)!
This afternoon from 1:30 to 2:30 I went to the Appreciation Hall for the first of three open forums with the three final candidates (one per day) for the president position at Foothill. I was going because I was interested in contributing my part in deciding who is chosen as president (by asking one question as well as I'm in the CNSL 86 leadership class that meets Tuesday 1:30-2:30 so we were required to attend today.

I just wanted to tell you that I'm going because Appreciation Hall was full, but mostly full of professors and other staff members of Foothill, pratically the only students were the ones in my leadership class! I really do think that Foothill's new president will affect (or effect?!) all of those who will be students at Foothill next year.

Here's the website for the information. There are two more forums, tomorrow (Wednesday) and Thursday 1:30-2:30 pm in Appreciation Hall (across from the big Smithwick theater in the arts area of campus).

I will actually not be able to make it to the forums tomorrow or Thursday but I really do hope some of you will be!

(This is not for any credit for this class, I'm just announcing this to you all as something you might want to consider!)
During my long, long search through the digital world of the Internet I was wondering what other people are finding online for their own essays on the World is Flat.

Are you using internet sources? What kinds?

As I said, my search took an incredible length of time. Sometimes it would be nice to JUST have a library full of 1,000 books to choose from, that's it. With my laptop connected to the Los Altos Library's wireless I have the world's information just a click away, but what do I click? What do I type to find the information I want?

Do you have any special phrases or words that you know work for finding exactly what you're looking for?

Are you also having a difficult time searching through ALL of the world's information online? How do you know what's related to the topic of your essay from just a three line summary of the link?

How long have you spent searching online? Have you found any really amazing landmines of information for your essay? If you want to, share your information because it might be helpful to someone else!

Just some questions to try and get you thinking! If you have any other ideas about searching online, comment on this post!

What can I post here?!

On our Groupblog you can post any kind of discussion topic IF it relates to the following: ePortfolios, education and technology, and educational philosophy. To know more about what to blog, look at the post titled "Stuff to Blog About," it's really helpful!!