Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Picnik - Image Manipulation

Jimmy and me
Originally uploaded by Kelly Wilkins
Excuse me for bragging, but I just had to upload the photo of me with my favourite Aussie musician, Jimmy Barnes.
Using Picnic was not a smooth process for me. I am not sure whether it was just my computer or whether it was the actual site, but I found the site slow, and I actually restarted my computer to check if it was a fault with my computer, however, once restarted I still found the site slow. For the benefit of the assessment, I am judging this site on the concept rather than the performance and I can certainly see how fantastic this concept is. Other than the performance frustrations, this was actually really fun to do. I was certainly engaged. Students need a bit of a break from the more intense classroom activities every now and then, and incorporating this kind of activity into my students learning activities would make it more fun, whilst still developing some valuable skills. Just like in this course, once the fun has been had, by changing the photo, students can then link to a blog or Wiki which is teaching them how to utilise all of these tools together. It would be a simple yet effective collaborative learning exercise. Students could work in pairs, and then use their RSS' to monitor their peers work. As suggested in Engagement Theory: A framework for technology-based teaching and learning (Kearsley & Schneiderman, 1999) "Ideally, students can complete a number of brief group activities with different partners in the first few classes so they can make a good choice of team members for full scale projects. In this context, students need to be sensitized to issues such as gender/racial bias, personality conflicts and different work habits."
By completing this one simple activity, students are actually learning a lot more then just how to manipulate a photo. As stated above, working with others teaches students a number of valuable skills required to help them become life long learners.


Kearsley, G. & Shneiderman, B. (1999) Engagement Theory: A framework for technology based teaching and learning. Retrieved July 4, 2009, from

Picnik (2009) Retrieved July 29, 2009, from

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