Laura Loves Languages

A place for many opinions

Bee rocks the house NOLA style.

It was a special morning in New Orleans on Friday when Bee invited the Webheads in Action to the MERLOT 2007 conference via Alado and Second Life. They checked in from Australia, New Zealand, Portugal and Taiwan etc. etc.. Bee was really effective in showing how small the world can be when educators with a passion for sharing get together. No more working in isolation. The potential for exciting collaborations between teachers and students worldwide is already  there. Hear/see the keynote at Alado and see Bee’s spectacular NOLA pics at flickr tagged merlot2007onlap. It was really a week to remember.

Our community workday at an historic elementary in Mid-City was a phenomenal start. Forty-two MERLOT folks taping and painting trim in an elementary school that saw five feet of water in its ground floor level after Katrina. They lost everything inside either because of the water or the mold after the water receded.  Our work was a small contribution in light of the need, but it did wonders for all of us. The school is going to be better than it was before Katrina given the hard work of the many volunteers who are working there. Troy, the volunteer coordinator told us that this was one of nine schools he was readying for a Fall start. Everybody wanted to do as much as he/she could.

MERLOT had a new feature called Learning Circles this year and they were very well received by the attendees. MERLOT World Languages sponsored one called The Many Languages of MERLOT where attendees from Brazil, Israel, Japan, Senegal, Canada, Italy, Chile, Spain, the US and the UK and other lands  all spoke volumes about how MERLOT could evolve into a more multilingual resource. The discussion moved from the political “Do we translate?”, to”What do we translate?” and then to a  more technical, but extremely stimulating conversation about metadata. Mous Diack, from Southern University and A&M College and director of the MERLOT African Network project, rightly identified  language as a real access issue. Susanna Dammann, project manager of Linguanet Europa (MERLOT’s 2007 Editor’s Choice award winner) and her Linguanet colleagues, Jose Ignacio and Luis, from the Instituto Cervantes and the Universidad Politecnica de Madrid gave MERLOT many good ideas on possible directions in which to proceed. This meeting was one of the more profitable new features at the MIC because it brought home the growing international  contingent in many different disciplines. The community-building was great as participants talked and MERLOT listened.

Back in the French quarter, we took in the wonderful Rue Royale at night. Art, jewlery, antiques, everything glowed in the light of the gaslight lamps.  The jellyfish lamps were among my favorites. Diane showed us some great art, including a few original Rodrigues at K-Pauls. Will we ever forget the Duck and Shrimp Vindaloo? The Creole Mary’s?

August 11, 2007 Posted by | Languages, merlot2007onlap, Uncategorized | Leave a comment


Can’t tell you how jazzed I am to be going to New Orleans to spend the week with my MERLOT fam. Doubly so since the emphasis is on  the Humanities this year with History, Music and World Languages featured disciplines.Could not be a more appropriate venue.

I will be blogging, no doubt, about the keynote of my wonderful friend Bee who has made it possible to follow her presentation virtually, in the event you cannot come in person. Check it out, in her own words. You are invited!!!:

 You may participate in her presentation according to Bee by:

  • blogging about it (tag your post merlot2007onlap)
  • photographing/recording/making a video of it and displaying your production online (remember to tag it using merlot2007onlap)



  • listening to it and interacting with the online participants and presenter directly from the Merlot Conference Room.
  • listening to it online from your home through the webcast (see explanation below) being streamed from the Webheads in Action page
  • listening to it through the webcast and interacting online through chat with participants on Boracay Island in Second Life (you need to become a member of SL and download the SL software first if you do not have it)
  • listening to it through the webcast and interacting through chat with participants in Alado.
  • listening to it through the webcast, interacting through chat with participants inside Second Life. (see co-presenters in the communities)

    A Live Interactive Webcast is basically like a global radio show that is produced and accessed via the internet. A discussion between two or more more parties using a telephony program is streamed live so that many listeners can tune in and, when desired, call in to the show host and participate in the discussion. These shows usually include the use of a text chat room so that listeners and discussion participants can communicate with each other during the show. Telephony + Two-way audio capturing + live streaming = Live Interactive Webcasting. (Source – Webcast Academy Curriculum ”

    I hope all of you do come. I met Bee because of such a collaborative, interactive environment. What an exciting world.

    August 4, 2007 Posted by | Languages, merlot2007onlap | Leave a comment