Tuesday, January 25, 2011

“Imagery” - Challenge #5

Images make the blog. A good image often says more than the carefully crafted words the writer has used to convey their message.

I know of (and use) various ways to present images in blogs; however, I only recently realised that I haven’t always demonstrated best practice in regards to publishing images on A Relief Teacher’s Journey.

Learning about Creative Commons

In December 2010, I engaged in some wide-reading about Creative Commons copyright regulations, and quickly changed my blogging practice in response.

After I belatedly realised that my past use of images hadn’t been strictly legal, I made a conscious effort to use legally available images (from Flickr CC) to represent / support my blog posts. Over the next few months, I will revise some of my older posts to ensure their compliance with the copyright regulations which (do actually) apply to the Internet!


Flickr CC Image: 'Rodeo Beach - Marin Headlands'

So, where to from here?

I’m not going to write a lengthy post about Creative Commons, nor am I going to present a series of tips for the effective use of CC images, sounds, etc. in blog posts. I know for a fact that others can do this better than I can, and many already have – see Sue Waters’ excellent “how to” post: Enhancing Blog Posts with Images.

No, I think I’ll provide a few handy links for ‘creative commons savvy’ educators, and publish a few of my PhotoStory™ presentations (2008-2009) which demonstrate the power of images for telling a story.

Let me know what you think.

My Diigo Links – CC Resources

@2sparkley – Creative Commons Livebinders
Sitepoint.com – Places to Find Creative Commons Media
The Whiteboard Blog – Creative Commons Images and Audio
FlickrCC – Flickr Creative Commons Search

PhotoStory Presentations – Crusin’


  1. Hi Michael thanks for sharing this post. You have made some great comments and been reflective on your use of images (which we all should be).
    What I like best is the fact that you have reminded us that we don't always have to use new tools and spend a lot of time using them, but we can work with our tried and true software and use that online. I still like working with MS Photostory and MS Powerpoint - I know how they work, they both have great features and therefore, I can put something together that looks good quickly and easily. Your videos look great from the front page, but I am on poor internet access at the moment and will have to look at them when I get back to broadband.

  2. Hi Michael,

    Thanks for a great post. I too used to use images from anywhere! And like you I have mended my ways and now spend a lot of time teaching others about Creative Commons. I think it is something that is very important to teach our students. But I do find it difficult when the response from some teachers is 'who will know?' or 'they will never find out.' You can certainly see that they have never had someone take credit for something they have done!
    The great thing is posts like this are certainly getting the message across.

  3. Thankyou Murcha & Mel for your comments. I've certainly come a long way with my understanding of Creative Commons, and how it affects our teaching practice.

    I agree, that in today's digital world, we need to teach our students (and our colleagues) about creative commons as part of the regular curriculum - we;d be setting them up for trouble if we didn't.

    So I suppose, yes, I will be starting to raise awareness of this issue; and it will be of particular relevance when I eventually establish my first class blog ... one day!

  4. Thanks for talking about Creative Commons. One of my friends is a cartoonist and one of his images had been copied so many times in one particular community that I had no idea he was the original artist! He now advocates putting a name in the file name of the image to get recognition.

  5. Michael
    I think many of us could tell the same story about our use of images in the beginning!

    I watched both your cruise ship photostory videos. I went on a cruise- can't remember which Princess! We went from Auckland NZ.to Brisbane July 2010. It was my first experience on a cruise. Just a few short days. We hit a big storm in the Tasman!! We have decided the next cruise will not be across the Tasman!

    However I think your photostory videos prove using such a simple piece of software makes an effective presentation. My brain is going click click. I could .... with my students.

  6. Thanks for the comments! The first thing I must say is I hope it wasn't one of my behaviour management cartoons featured on this blog!

    Kathryn, why oh why would you sail through some of the most treacherous waters in Australia! I've never been cruising myself - I can't afford it ... yet!

    On your other point, I must agree with Murcha and yourself that PhotoStory, while simple, is a really useful tool in the classroom. One strategy I'm familiar with is having students view the pictures (eg. from an excursion) on an IWB (if you're lucky enough to have one) and recording their thoughts via a microphone.

  7. Hi Michael

    I'm in the process of getting my head around Creatite Commons so I can explain it in a simple way to both our staff and students.

    Thanks so much for sharing your Creative Commons links - they will come in VERY handy!

    I enjoy using PhotoStory too and have been using it to keep a visual diary of the building of our new library.

    Kim :)

  8. Thanks Kim. Its' taken me quite a while to understand CC, but it's important knowledge if we're going to be teaching our students and colleagues about digital citizenship.

    Best of luck!


  9. Thank you for your post. This has enlightened me to the CC rules and I will set about rectifying the error of my ways. It is also important to teach our students about digital stewardship, as so much of their life is spent on computers.

    Thanks again,

  10. Hi Michael. Thanks for your comment. I agree completely - teaching digital citizenship is essential in our 21st century learning environments, but first, we teachers need to model it in our own practice.