112 – The Best and Worst Picks of 2009

This week on the WELSTech podcast we look back at our best and worst picks of the week.

The discussion:

RSS Powers WELSTechClosing out 2009 – A year’s worth of Picks of the Week boils down to this special episode where Martin and Sallie share their best and worst selections.  From iPhone apps to social media, 2009 has been a banner year for digital advances.  The many memorable events of the year are showcased, using Google Wave of all things, in the video Waving Goodbye to 2009.

Coming up on WELSTech:

(41:57) Episode 113 – Next week we celebrate the two-year anniversary of the WELSTech Podcast and talk with Nelson Saba, creator of the Glo Bible.   (Release date 01/06/10)

The featured artist:

(43:56) We close with the music of The Branches Band (www.branchesband.com) – God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen from their CD titled ”A Branch Is Growing”

Get involved:

6 replies
  1. Roxann Nys
    Roxann Nys says:

    Although I read your response to previous posts in support of Tony Vincent’s outstanding website, it’s clear that WELSTech and your system of Lutheran Elementary Schools isn’t seeing the future as Tony and many of the rest of us do. Handheld devices are what students are comfortable with and are using successfully for learning (where they are allowed to.) They are what I’ve been advocating to the 38 school districts in NE WI with whom I work for the past 10 years–many are finally listening. If your schools really took the time to explore Tony’s amazing resources, they would see that is a smart direction for them to take as well. By telling them the website is not worth their while, I believe you are doing them a tremendous disservice.

  2. Sallie Draper
    Sallie Draper says:

    Nancy and Sue –

    Thank you for your thoughtful comments. I can tell that you both hold Mr. Vincent and his work in the highest esteem, as do I. I follow him on Twitter and have greatly appreciated and benefited from the resources he shares. That is why I originally shared his web site when I discovered it as my pick of the week back on WELSTech Episode 073 (http://blogs.wels.net/welstech/2009/05/27/073-warm-ears-hot-video/). You can listen to my summary of the site starting at about 43:22 in that show. I believe you will find it a very favorable review.

    On our year end show our objective is to highlight our best and the worst picks of the year, not in terms of worst being “bad” but worst being something we didn’t adopt or find as useful as we thought we would, particularly for ministry purposes, which is the focus of the podcast. You’ll hear me explain that around 7:37 in the show. And if you listen to my reasoning behind selecting Learning In Hand as a “worst” pick – starting at 15:25 in the show – you’ll hear me say that I have nothing at all against the site. In fact I call it “great”. My reasoning instead centered on my thought that our system of Lutheran Elementary Schools probably won’t be going to hand held devices in the classroom in the near future, thus the site isn’t something our listeners would find particularly useful at this time.

    I hope that helps to clarify the context of the pick. Again, I greatly appreciate your feedback and will continue to watch Tony and others as more resources and adoption occurs of hand held devices in education.


  3. Sue Sumerford
    Sue Sumerford says:

    What? I, too, was shocked to see “Learning in Hand” on a “Worst” list of anything. An educator with over 25 year, 13 in educational technology, it has been my experience that one of the most reliable resources in our field is Tony Vincent and the wealth of materials he has shared from the front lines through his web site. His podcasting guide alone is so invaluable to teachers wanting to get started with student podcasting projects. His groundbreaking work on Radio Willowweb is widely referenced.

    If I could only read one blog. . . hey, wait, I mostly do only read one blog, and it’s Tony’s! I’m not a big follower of web fads, but I do follow him on Twitter. He is probably the most up-to-date and most classroom-connected consultant in the business, with real-world experience. (Of course, if you’re not really an educator, you probably wouldn’t know that.) Also, it is always apparent that he really cares about teachers, students, and learning first. You might want to consider inviting him to do a workshop for your teachers. They will be truly inspired and learn way more about using technology in the classroom on a practical level. We’ve invited him back to Michigan next summer for a countywide inservice and can’t wait to see what he will share with our teachers.

    I agree with the previous post. You are way off on this one. There’s glitz and there’s substance. Mr. Vincent’s body of work is one of the few websites we can count on for credibility, both historically and for the latest trends. I hope you’ll take another look and consider revising your list!

  4. Nancy Pratt
    Nancy Pratt says:

    Hey There,
    I think you are way off on your “Learning in Hand” listing. Have you really looked at the links and updates that have been made on that site? The blog that Tony writes and links to from there is amazing. His generous resources are abundant, and he is always just an email away from anyone needing assistance.

    Tony has assisted in our school district in Arizona several times, and each time, as he meets the teachers he maintains support and guidance for them long after he leaves.

    Yes, I think you are way off on this non-pic. This site couldn’t be more user friendly or generous, and the person behind it couldn’t be more approachable and helpful. Always instructive, I know anyone who goes to this site or the AZ K12 blog learns something every time.

    I wonder if you would consider rescinding this poor choice. It should definitely be moved to the column for one of the best.


Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] (17:05) The Best Worst Pick Ever! – Tony Vincent, Education Consultant and the person behind LearningInHand.com, joins Martin and Sallie to share his experience and success stories with handheld computing devices in the classroom.  Listen as Tony shares excellent resources and his predictions for the future of PODs (Personally Owned Devices) in the classroom.  What was Sallie thinking when she chose Tony’s site as a worst pick?? […]

  2. […] the WELSTech “shock jock”, took some heat for one of her worst picks of […]

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