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Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Introduction to Wikimedia Commons, an image search engine that that teachers and students can use in their Judaic Studies program. Wikimedia Commons displays images that have a Creative Commons License

When mentoring our pre-service and in-service teachers we need to describe and model both research-based and clinically tested best practices, and demonstrate how these best practices can be applied in the real (i.e. physical) and virtual (i.e. online) classroom for both teaching and teacher training. The combination of face to face instruction in a physical setting and online learning is called blended learning. In this section of the blog we will describe how the internet can serve as a supplemental resource for instruction and the mentoring of pre-service and in-service Jewish educators. In this post we will discuss the images that teachers and students in a Judaic Studies instructional program can copy and edit via the website, Wikimedia Commons. The images stored in Wikimedia Commons contain Creative Commons Licenses. For more information about the six types of Creative Commons Licenses click onto this link:

Assumption: The teacher or mentor teacher has an interactive white board (i.e. SMART Board, Promethean, etc.), a tablet PC (also called a Slate or Blade), a computer presenter or computer with internet access attached to an LCD projector in the classroom. It would be ideal if students or mentees had access to their own laptop computers or Ipads. Given parental and school approval, and the development of specific guidelines, smartphones can be used to enhance instruction as well.

Note: Although the images on Wikimedia Commons can be applied in the Judaic Studies blended learning classroom, it can be also be used for training pre-service and in-service Jewish educators for professional or staff development. It is our hope that Jewish educators around the globe will form an online community of practice, a CoP, a group of people who share an interest, a craft, and/or a profession, to enhance the delivery of instruction and training of Jewish educators. For example, here is a CoP you might want to join. 

What is Wikimedia Commons?

Wikimedia Commons is an image search engine that provides photos that have Creative Commons Licenses; the photos on Wikipedia can be copied and edited by Judaic Studies and secular teachers, students and others.

Where is Wikimedia Commons located on the internet?

Below you will find sample photos or images related to Jerusalem, Shabbat and Israel.

NOTE: When converting an image always make certain that you either own the image or have permission to copy it.

On the next blog post we will share another photo or image search engine, Library of Congress Photo Archives, whose pictures can be copied and edited without concern about copyright infringement.

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