Alan Levine, one of our favorite world travelers, and a longtime online friend of mine, made a stop at my house in Virginia Beach, Virginia, a few months ago as one of his stops on his 2011 Odyssey road trip. We had a grand time while he visited – and I invited him to join Powerful Learning Practice for the culminating activity of the ConnectU Australia Community to present his keynote: 50+ Web 2.0 Ways to Tell a Story. The Australia Culminating event was awesome and packed with energy. I wanted to share some resources from Alan’s keynote in this post.

cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo shared by cogdogblog

Before the main part of his presentation, Alan set up a few activities based on the Alternate Reality Game PLP had set up for the participants here – a story about the PLP penguin, Periwinkle who had somehow gotten himself tied up in a boxing match with a tough kangaroo named Joey.

Alan had our PLPeeps think about these characters do some creative activities to develop their personas.

He split the room in two, and had half the room work on the questions about Joey’s character and half do the same questions about Peri (created in open Google docs) — they took to it with plenty of  energy!

cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo shared by cogdogblog

Alan ultimately had to pull them out of the google docs while they were still writing and laughing. Then he asked for a volunteer to come up on stage and lead the choices of photo for a 5 card flickr story (he had gotten people to tag about 300 photos with the project tag plpconnectu). Lois was a great sport (see her story here) and then it was the group’s turn. Once again, they really ran with this activity.

Then he extended the story development process, and had the groups switch, the people who had worked on Joey’s character, now had to review the traits about Peri, and enter the responses to the Call to Adventure stage for Peri â€” and likewise, the other group do the same for Joey’s Call to Adventure. He then got two more volunteers to come up on stage and do a pechaflickr round of improv with those plpconnecu tagged photos.

The 50 Ways Tool Picker

He then unveiled his secret weapon – a tool that would help decide which Web 2.0 tool was best for the job. All they needed to do was click “pick” on the 50 Ways Tool Picker! Click below to check it out!

Our PLPeeps were truly on the edges of their seat and willing to jump in and play. A big thanks to everyone who participated and to Alan for an energetic and fun keynote!

Keep your eyes out for more posts soon all about the team projects, alternate reality game and the other adventures at our culminating activity!


See photos from the culminating activity on Flickr. All of the presentation slides and links are at You can also listen to an Audio archive of his presentation.

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During a 25-year education career, Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach has been a classroom teacher, technology coach, charter school principal, district administrator, university instructor and digital learning consultant. Sheryl is the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Powerful Learning Practice, where she works with schools and districts from around the world to re-envision their learning cultures and communities through the Connected Learner Experience and other e-learning opportunities. She is the author (with Lani Ritter Hall) of The Connected Educator: Learning and Leading in a Digital Age (Solution Tree, 2012) and serves on the ISTE Board of Directors.
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