's Blog (32)

Yay! Drawing Tablets! ...and MyPaint

Hey guys,

I finally have had some success installing our brand new Bamboo Drawing Tablets. We, in Memphis, had kind of been at an impasse as far as a replacement for ArtRage in Ubuntu. After a suggestion on an internet site, I have downloaded MyPaint. It is great. If you have drawing tablets, it's the perfect application! Not only is it free, but it offers much more creative possibilities than the free version of ArtRage 2.5. Enough commercial time, off to play!…


Added by on October 27, 2010 at 11:58am — 1 Comment

Help. :)

Hey guys,

Teen Tech Camp 2010 went very well here in Memphis. I haven't posted any projects though. Fortunately/ Unfortunately our wireless network went to an Aruba based system and I didn't have the foresight to update the drivers on our computers. :) Lesson learned.

The great news is that now we have some funds for wireless mice and drawing tablets. We've purchased the Bamboo tablets by Wacom. The mice are plug and play, but I am having some difficulty with the tablets. I… Continue

Added by on October 4, 2010 at 11:53am — 4 Comments

Basic and 'Advanced' Concepts in Scratch

Hey guys,

Thanks again for all the wonderful ideas and inspiration last week. Our meeting gave me a much needed boost of energy heading into the summer. Today I made two 'sample' Scratch Programs. A very basic one following the Introduction to Animation directions, and a Magic 8 Ball inspired by Janet's project.

The basic one I am thinking of running with our 6-12 year old crowd. If we make it past the basics, then I am thinking of introducing the 'sound'…


Added by on June 8, 2010 at 3:30pm — 1 Comment

Scratch with 6-12 yr olds!

On June 29th my co-workers in the Children’s Department and I are running a Scratch program for children ranging in age from 6-12. I haven’t run a program with participants quite this young. This change has come as a result of meeting two phenomenal nine year olds, pacsponge and flimflamjj. They took to Scratch more quickly than my teens and have made some really great programs in the process.

Any suggestions/experiences working with younger…


Added by on June 1, 2010 at 6:09pm — 4 Comments

Teen Tech Camp 2010

Hey guys,

Still trying to resolve some Ubuntu bug issues and sounds in Scratch. Unfortunately, due to the flooding here in Tennessee our internet capabilites here have been sporatic. Still trying to find a friend or co-worker with internet access and the ability to burn a LiveCD of Ubuntu 9.1 or higher!

Also, at a meeting yesterday, I was informed that I will be teaching Teen Tech Camp again. It seems our outside instructor has fallen through. :) So, now I am…


Added by on May 5, 2010 at 10:28am — 2 Comments

Tennessee Library Association Presentation

Hi everyone!

Our TLA Presentation was yesterday morning, and it went off without a hitch. Well, except we ran out of 'play time' just as everyone was really getting into exploring Scratch. There was someone there who was posting our presentation to School Library Journal as we were presenting. [Glad I didn't know about that at the time, or I would have been more nervous than I already was!] I haven't had much time to search for the post this morning, but I as soon as I find…


Added by on March 20, 2010 at 11:30am — 4 Comments

Ubuntu 9.1

Okay guys,

I have successfully downloaded Unubtu 9.1. But, now I am unsure how to get the OS burned to a disk or on a USB drive. I also downloaded a program called usblive-creator. But, the problem is I don't know how to get a Linux system to run these programs once I download them. Guess I have gotten lazy with all the Windows/Mac wizards that install everything for you!

Any helpful hints/suggestions?

BTW, I haven't forgotten about posting pictures and…


Added by on March 17, 2010 at 12:19pm — 5 Comments

Widgets, Gadgets, and Gizmos...otherwise known as Adventures in Pico Boarding!

Hi all,

We had a great Teen Tech Week session here in Memphis today! [I was worried because Tuesday no one showed up for an Open Lab Session :( ] Today we had eight really engaged, bright teens and tweens. I think our youngest was nine. I began the session by walking everyone through the steps to build a simple circuit (like we all did in Minneapolis training). Then, we all added switches to our circuits. After much fumbling, everyone was on board. Then we moved to Scratch and wrote…


Added by on March 11, 2010 at 6:30pm — 5 Comments

Teen Tech Camp and computer configuration?

Hi all,

As we gear up here in Memphis for our annual Teen Tech Camp, I have a few questions about computer configuration. We have an available group of laptops here at the library that are off the server, and out of the system. It's a great setup when you want to add or delete programs, and perform updates. But, it has led to a situation where about half of our laptops are running Ubuntu (linux OS) and about half are running some variation of Windows. We would love to have all…


Added by on March 8, 2010 at 5:12pm — 18 Comments

Teen Tech Week and Adventures in Pico Boarding.

Hey guys,

Just trying to begin planning our Teen Tech Week Program. I know it's a bit early, the program is going to run March 11th. But, I was wondering if anyone had a source for all the supplies we used to create our little circuits? I had fun with mine and still have it on my desk as a sculpture, so I thought it would be a great way to get our participants engaged. I plan to do the circuit demo and then add the toilet paper roll switch. Then I want them to explore the pico boards and… Continue

Added by on January 14, 2010 at 9:34am — 7 Comments

Today at our East Shelby Branch location

Today I had my first traveling program. I went out to our East Shelby Branch location with our laptops and microphones in honor of Teen Read Week. I had four participants who were very engaged, ethusiastic, and energetic. They recorded sounds, animated Sprites, and made some backgrounds. Unfortunately, East Shelby does not yet have Wireless service, and internet was not available in the Meeting Room we were using. I should be posting their projects soon and adding some photos to the Ning as… Continue

Added by on October 24, 2009 at 4:08pm — 2 Comments

Simple Animation with Text and Sound - edited for East Shelby Branch Program

Hey guys, here's a link to the program I am running at our East Shelby Branch location this Saturday. I edited the 'All About Me' Program that we ran during Teen Tech Camp this summer. Haven't completely finished it. Need to create a simple soundtrack for the walking robot and add some text as a lead in for the tutorial. Will post an update soon. Oh, I also embedded it in 'My Page' on the Ning.

Added by on October 19, 2009 at 12:48pm — 1 Comment

Umm, so...

No one showed up this Tuesday for our regularly scheduled lab time. Instead, John and I did some maintainence on the labtops and waited around. We closed up shop about thirty minutes before the end of the scheduled session. Still planning on running a Halloween Greeting Lab next week. We'll see if anyone shows!

Added by on October 15, 2009 at 9:14am — 4 Comments

Scratchin' in Memphis...

Yes, we still are hosting Open Labs and Scratchin here in Memphis. We are trying to brainstorm how to reinvigorate our sessions. Attendance during the school year has dropped drastically.

Anyway, I am working on a formal session in honor of Teen Read Week that will run October 13th and October 27th. It's going to be a Halloween take on the Scratch Greeting Card that everyone ran earlier in the year.

Also in the works, I am going to be traveling to the East Shelby Branch… Continue

Added by on October 8, 2009 at 9:57am — 5 Comments

Well, Teen Tech Camp is over, but...

...we are having an Open Lab session this afternoon from 2:30-4:30. Hopefully, some of the campers will come back to visit us. We are planning appropriately by scheduling a larger room than our usual space. Also, the Teen Tech Camp Gallery has been updated with all projects but a few [Some campers' usernames are not coming up when I do a Search in Scratch. Anyone else having this difficulty?].

Here's the link to the updated Gallery:… Continue

Added by on July 28, 2009 at 10:40am — 2 Comments

Wrapping up our projects and debugging.

So, today's session of Teen Tech Camp was more like an Open Lab. Each camper is working towards an individual [or group] goal. All of their projects seem different. We have several games, some demonatrations/tutorials, some animations, and a few storytelling projects...there is even a group working on a singing project. [They have been recording their voice tracks for the last few days.] Our campers are very engaged. It's really an amazing thing to see. We have to call five minutes 'til time at… Continue

Added by on July 23, 2009 at 4:30pm — No Comments

Side-Scrolling today.

"The best laid plans of mice and men..."

So today my presentation idea fell apart. Although a little disappointed, it was only because the campers are so invested in their individual projects. I gave them the handouts, at least, to try later. But, today was run more like an Open Lab.

In the morning, we had a Bright Shiny Object Presentation from Mr. Ruch. He's the COO of Justin Timberlake's web site. He showed us Justin's website, but also demo'd a web based video app that… Continue

Added by on July 22, 2009 at 4:41pm — No Comments

Our Second Day of Teen Tech Camp.

Today was the second day of Teen Tech Camp here in Memphis, TN. I previously posted a gallery of our teens' work on a project called "All About Me" for our Orientation session. Yesterday, we made a project where one Sprite was controlled by moving the mouse. We also added Animation and Sound to these projects. Today we stepped things up another notch with Simple Chase Game instructions. The campers all made at least one game and posted it to Scratch. Almost every camper is also working on a… Continue

Added by on July 21, 2009 at 4:00pm — 2 Comments

Teen Tech Camp Orientation

Hi all,

Last night was Teen Tech Camp Orientation here in Memphis. We had some very involved participants! I have posted some photos of last night's event. Most everyone was engaged and playing with possibilities from the moment we introduced Scratchr the website. Nearly everyone successfully created and account and posted their first project "All About Me". It was a formal session, and I have been working on the handout for quite some time now. Hopefully, I can post the final… Continue

Added by on July 10, 2009 at 9:30am — 1 Comment

Major Breakthrough in Memphis...

Sorry I haven't posted anything in so long. We've been having a great Summer Reading Club, which means we have been very busy [ it's a quality problem really ].

Another problem we have been having here is a weak and faltering wireless connection, as well as a broadband connection that is less than stellar. Today though, we have had a major breakthrough!

Our local bloodbank, Lifeblood, has let us borrow a Procurve Wireless Access Point. We configured everything today, and… Continue

Added by on July 7, 2009 at 6:54pm — 1 Comment

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