Friday, March 4, 2011

Facebook, Farcebook, and Fakebook


So we have a spankin new iMac computer lab in our building and I'm really chuffed! (British for freakin excited!) 30 brilliant new iMacs all lined up & shiny...ready to do some cool stuff with the kids! (and yes, throughout this post I'll be showing off the pics - your hard-earned tax money at work - please notice the Think Different Apple posters laminated & stapled to the wall - don't hate! Thanks RiptideF for the link)
Facebook, Farcebook, and Fakebook Templates
Miss Wallen - one of our coolest teachers is using the iMac lab with her kids to do a mock Facebook page for Latin American Historical figures like Pizarro, Cortes, Bolivar, and Hidalgo with her 7th grade Social Studies kids!
Using the downloadable template I shared from our favourite NerdyTeacher none other than Nick Provenzano the kids are using our databases and links Miss Wallen found to do their research and then become the character filling in the Facebook template.

What's so cool is they can write on their walls as if they or another historic character left a message such as: "I Founded a city...I'm calling it Ciudad de los Reyes, which means "City of the Kings" It's royally AWEsome...I'm a Winner!" Even though in real life Pizarro never learned to read or write... with this template kids can really get a different glimpse into his life, political struggles, adventures, and accomplishments!

My teacher librarian friend, Barbara Randolph, passed along a cool link to a Teacher's Discovery resources Blank Farcebook Poster Set of 30 for $19.99 - which can be laminated & written on with dry erase markers for when the computer lab is being used for month long standardized testing (starting next week!). Taking that idea...I've got it in me heid to create a comic life version - making several changes - I'm gonna call it Fakebook and post it to my Comic Tutorial gallery & ya'll can print em out for free! Stay tuned for that!

But I AM gonna buy from that company a really cool set of NOVEL CHARACTERS FARCEBOOK (TM) POSTERS SET OF 8 for...[gulp!] $39.99! Described as: "Characters from your favorite novels come to life on these Farcebook posters. Learn what book Ponyboy Curtis likes to read and what Frankenstein's monster's favorite song is. Does Scout Finch really belong to the group "the Maycomb Legal Defense Fund"? Is Odysseus really interested in spelunking? Find out these fun facts and more. Your students will recognize this format and will love finding all the hidden information. 11 x 17 inches each, printed on glossy card stock, middle school/high school. "
Check out that cool chick Juliet & her page...has she friended you yet?

Read, Write, Think! Profile Publisher
Another suggestion from Barb Randolph, Profile Publisher, which is a Flash driven site that creates profiles that look a lot like old skool MySpace pages! Black and white PDF's are easy on the toner but still
"Students can use the Profile Publisher to mock up or draft online social networking profiles, yearbook profiles, and newspaper or magazine profiles for themselves, other real people (including historical figures), or fictional characters. The tool could also be used for profiles of nonhuman living creatures, inanimate objects or abstract concepts (e.g., profile of an amoeba, an historical monument, or friendship). See a completed sample Profile for a fictional character based on Christopher Myers' Wings to see what a student profile might look like."


So, when our 7th grade social studies kids finish the unit & we check out all their pages we'll be posting some of them on our learning wiki! I love the idea of these Fake Facebook pages for historical or fictional characters - it get's the kids excited about research - it creates a dynamite disposition to learning with total student engagement and is also relatable!

What do you think? Do you have any other resources or sites like these that use Social Media to tie into student projects? Please comment! Loves me some comments!
---
iMac lab photos by Gwyneth Jones

11 comments:

  1. The lab looks beautiful and I will admit we are envious. Those sort of funds just aren't available but we are getting 15 refurbished mac books so we can have a portable lab in the next two years. What a shame the lab has to be booked for standardized testing. Shame.
    I have similar Facebook projects for Shakespeare plays. They really help students apply their learning and stretch their thinking. Thanks for some more great ideas.

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  2. Mmmm, iMacs :-)
    Myfakewall.com is an easy to use Facebook-style page building tool. Also, I recently saw FamousInboxes.com which is a similar fun idea, except with this all you see is the subject line of messages in the inbox of your character/historic figure.

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  3. Myfakewall.com is a dead easy way to build a fake Facebook page.
    Also, I came across FamousInboxes.com recently - a similar idea although not with a tool/template, you'd have to make it yourself - where you just see the subject line of messages in a famous character or historic figure's inbox. Funny stuff.

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  4. The mock facebook pages are such a clever idea! I'm teaching a French History course to high schoolers this summer, and I'll definitely be using that! Can't wait for your Fakebook version, though, as many of the templates out there are a little clunky. Thanks for posting these awesome ideas!

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  5. Thank you thank you thank you Gwyneth! This type of thing is exactly what we've been looking for. Rather than actually building pages on Facebook itself (tangential story: a police officer came to chat with the gr 7/8 kids and asked in a conversational tone, "so who here has Facebook?" and when tons of hands went up, she changed her voice to stern and said "don't you know you have to be [whatever the age is, I can't recall] to be on there?" - the looks on their faces was funny - okay, I'm seriously digressing, where was I?), using the templates and putting them on the wiki we have would be so incredibly awesome as well as the other options you listed. I am so sending a link to my intermediate teachers!!!

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  6. Wow, Gwyneth! So many good ideas in just one post! I am going to order some of the Farcebook posters - just pondering which ones to get! As always, both your text and your images are inspiring. Thank you!

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  7. Hi Gwyneth-

    I am trying to get Macs as part of our library renovation, but our IT dept. tells me there are issues with Macs and our Enterprise servers with Active Directory. Do you happen to know how the Macs are networked? Any info you can give me would be greatly appreciated!!

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  8. Thanks for all the great comments & suggestions dear readers & friends! We are stronger when we share for sure!
    ------
    Debbie,
    Sorry hon, I'm a software apps grrl not hardware. But I daily fight the Abominable No Man ..people who spend more time telling me how they can't do something for the good of the kids rather than finding a way to do it! But then again, each server cluster is diff. We have Mac servers in our schools!
    Cheers!
    ~Gwyneth

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  9. I found that facebook template last year and had my students do different things with it. The template is awesome, but I can't take all of the credit. I did something similar with Myspace a few years ago. Remember Myspace? Lol! My kids really enjoyed creating character facebook pages. It was a great way to connect with them.

    - Nick

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  10. Teacher's Discovery has just launched an online blank Farcebook creator. Check out www.farcebook.us. Also, they have profiles for over 50 historical people. http://www.teachersdiscovery-socialstudies.com/item_details.php?item=142+1100+P0001528&SBJ=SocialStudies
    Great blog!
    Alicia

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  11. Wow. What an informative post for me to stumble into. Thanks so much - I am really interested in simulating social media for novel studies as I think ti really teaches and demonstrates the interactivity of characters beyond the page =)

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