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CO 85.1 [Fall 2007], pp. 24-26: ACL 2008 Technology Workshop in Rome; Cindy Caltagirone's pre-Institute workshop "Web Weaving: Supporting Your Classes Online"; Andrew Reinhard's eClassics site on Ning.com; Gatineau Software's online textbook/course; Logos Software pre-pub for Greek and multilingual Iliad.
ACL Tech Workshop-Tour Planned for Rome
The ACL Council at Institute in June agreed to sponsor a technology workshop and study tour in Rome during the summer of 2008. It will be hosted by the American University of Rome, which is located near the American Academy on the Gianicolo hill above the Trastavere area and just across the Tiber River from the historic center of Rome. The 14-day schedule (Sun. July 20 to Sun. August 3) will alternate days spent touring some of the most important sites in and around Rome, including a weekend trip to Pompeii and Herculaneum, with days spent in AUR's computer lab learning how to transfer digital photos and journals into documents and web pages that students can easily access.
The workshops and tours will be led by Julian Morgan, head of J-PROGS software, Medusa training, and partner in the EU's CIRCE project; Cindy Caltagirone, the National Latin Exam and ACL webmaster; Paul Gwynne, assistant professor of Classics at AUR; and myself. The curriculum is an expanded version of the one used by the CIRCE courses over the last two summers.
Accommodations will be in air-conditioned, student apartment suites with two bedrooms (single or double occupancy), bath, kitchenette, and sitting area. Meals will be provided by neighborhood restaurants and food shops. Prices are $3060-3675, depending on occupancy and level of participation. Scholarship funds are available from the ACL and other groups. For more info, go to www.aclclassics.org/rome2008 or contact me directly (e-mail email@example.com or tel. 1-608-255-6979).
Rome Previews & Other Institute Tech Talks
Some Institute attendees got a good opportunity to experience a taste of what will be presented in Rome next summer.
Cindy Caltagirone conducted a pre-Institute workshop entitled "Web Weaving: Supporting Your Classes Online," showing teachers how to create their own attractive website for students and parents to use. She followed this up with a regular workshop, "Digital Images 101," on working with images from digital cameras or the web to maximize their impact and usefulness in handouts, presentations , and web pages.
Paul Gwynne also gave an engrossing presentation on using Rome as a classroom, showing teachers how to help their students get the most out of a visit to "the Eternal City."
The other workshop in the computer lab was a fascinating demonstration by Anna Andresian about her own successful methods of using macros and templates in Microsoft Word to save time and do more in all kinds of documents. You can still get the detailed handout from her website: www.magistrula.com. Patrick McFadden demonstrated how he and his students use the new "tablet" computers in and out of the classroom (firstname.lastname@example.org), and Lisa St. Louis talked about how they use a Moodle-based site to support a completely online campus (email@example.com). Moodle is a free, "open source" website template designed to support communal and educational interaction, much like the subscription-based Blackboard and similar services.
eClassics Offers Multimedia Forum
Andrew Reinhard was also talking about making use of such free tech tools to support teaching and teachers. He has already acted on his words by setting up a special site on the Ning server called eClassics (www.eclassics.ning.com), which provides a forum for Classics teachers to post videos, photos, links, and comments centering on issues arising from the use of tech tools for teaching. It aims to get people talking about what their using, how their using it, what works, and what doesn't. Andrew recently took over IT and e-learning duties at Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers (firstname.lastname@example.org). Coming from previous work in archaeology and museum databases, he is keen to try out more of the new tools being offered online for e-learning.
Free sites like this are generally supported by having ads placed discretely in the margin, usually from Google or Yahoo.
Gatineau Site Has Online Text & Course
Another interesting free site for Classics that has arisen recently, is still under development, but is quite open for beta-testing is the Gatineau Software site. Ben MacKenzie is the mastermind and sole implementer of an ambitious plan to turn a historic Latin textbook into an online interactive Latin course. The book is The First Book in Latin on the Method of Constant Imitation and Repetition, written by John M'Clintock and George Crooks in 1859. It follows a traditional grammar-translation methodology and a simple graphics-free structure. Each stage of grammar is presented carefully, with paradigm charts inserted as needed and a vocabulary list at the end.
The online version maintains a nice, simple, easy-to-read format, with one long page devoted to each lesson (chapter). The interactive aspect comes at the end of the lesson, where there are always vocabulary drills and translation exercises on phrases initially, but later sentences of growing complexity. Drills and exercises always have formats for both English to Latin and vice versa. When new inflected forms are being introduced, there is a drill for those, too.
The vocabulary drills have a slightly different twist, in that they often use or ask for a different case of the word than the usual nominative--a nice, little extra challenge. Where the program really shines is in its complex correction scheme on the translation exercises. Most errors can be accurately assessed, and appropriate, useful feedback provided.
For more info, contact Gatineau Software, 149 Rue Principale, Gatineau, QC, Canada J9H 3K8; web: www.gatineausoftware.com; tel. 1-819-483-1504; email: email@example.com.
Logos Considers Iliad in Greek & Translation
Logos Bible Software transferred Liddell-Scott's Greek-English Lexicon (LSJ) to electronic form last year and is now working on doing the same with the complete Oxford Latin Dictionary (OLD). They have also just announced a pre-publication offer on The Iliad in Greek & Translation ($19.95 CD or download). The proposed edition would offer translations in four languages (English, French, German, Spanish) and eventually have direct links to their edition of the LSJ (above). For more info, contact: Logos Bible Software, 1313 Commercial St., Bellingham WA 98225; tel. 800-875-6467; web: www.logos.com.
As always, please let me know if you find any jewels out there on the web that you'd like me to pass along to your colleagues. Also, a reminder that there are still several free copies available of the CIRCE manual on Classics and ICT (Information & Communication Technologies) in secondary schools, and you can still send in a personal 250-word story about ICT in your own classroom for a free copy of Altair's DVD on Agrigento.
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