Archives for October 2007

New Podcast: Children’s Ministry Talk

Children's Ministry TalkDick Gruber and I are excited to be launching a new children's ministry podcast that we are calling "Children's Ministry Talk." While still very much still in the formative stages, this podcast will be talkshow style in which we look forward to providing encouragement for children's ministry leaders, by children's ministry leaders, on all things children's ministry.

So…how exactly will we accomplish this goal?  Well…we really want this podcast to be very much listener-driven and reallly be interactive. We want those who minister to children around the globe to contact us with questions or comments on anything related to children's ministry. Also, we'd love any suggestions that you'd have for the "ultimate children's ministry podcast."

There are lots of convenient ways for you to contact us, all of which are posted at the site that will accompany the podcast at  I'll refrain from posting our email address, phone number, and even tag in this posting, but you can find all of that over at There's an RSS feed for the blog there as well as links to subscribe to the podcast in iTunes or to subscribe to the blog so that you don't miss a single episode!

We plan to regularly have guests join us on-air to discuss various children's ministry topics. Who knows…maybe you'll have opportunity to join us on the air!  More details are sure to come as we continue fleshing things out. 

But, in the meantime, we want to hear from you!  Specifically, what questions do you have that you'd like us to talk about?  Is there a topic that has been addressed in a children’s ministry course, seminar, or conference that you'd like us to expand upon?  Or, is there a situation that you are facing in your children's ministry that you'd like some advice on how to address?  You name it…we want to hear from you on it.  We look forward to hearing from you, either via email, phone, etc.  Let your voice be heard and get in touch!

Twidget – Twitter Dashboard Widget

As my experiment with Twitter continues, I’ve been looking for an easier way to update my Twitter status rather than always having to go to the Web. I found a great dashboard widget for Mac OS X that allows me to quickly update my status…very nice!

Apple - Downloads - Dashboard Widgets - Twidget - Twitter Dashboard Widget

Now, how about a widget that lets me see the status of those who I want to “follow” in Twitter? I’ve not come across that that, but I’m sure it’s out there somewhere. For anyone who is already using Twitter, how are you following the status of others? Are you actually logging into the Twitter site? Or, via Facebook? Something else?

The undeniable fact remains…I’ve got a lot still to learn about this whole microblogging thing.

Twitter vs. Jaiku?


While I’ve not yet done a whole lot with the microblogging tool Twitter, I just came across this thorough introduction to how one might use Twitter.

If you want to give Twitter a try, you can sign-up for a free account here. You can find me at Twitter at

I wonder as enamored as it seems young people are these days with texting and social networking tools like this, are us “old folks” missing out by not being actively involved in the whole social presence phenomenon?

While I’m going to give Twitter a try and keep an open mind about it, I must admit that I’m really apprehensive about taking the time to post what I’m doing. Does anyone really care anyway what I’m doing? I know there are people who do, but will they want to subscribe follow me electronically? Maybe they do…and I’m being totally “20th century” about this.

Anyway…I’d love to hear from anyone who is either actively using Twitter, Jaiku, or some other microblogging tool. Or, maybe you’re considering just trying one. What are your thoughts on this?

Another question I’m going to throw out…what’s the big difference between Twitter and Jaiku? I’ve got a Jaiku account as well, but I’m not sure why I would want to use one over the other. Certainly, the fact the Google now owns Jaiku certainly catapults the development capital and potentially the longevity of Jaiku.

Chime in with your thoughts!

Web 2.0 Gizmos & Gadgets

This past week I gave a presentation at the 2007 SLATE Conference on the topic of Web 2.0 tools and integration with learning management systems.  Below is the citation for my talk along with links for the handout and audio recording of the session.


Rhode, J. F. (2007, Oct. 5). Web 2.0 gizmos and gadgets: Moving beyond the walls of Blackboard. Presented at the 2007 SLATE Conference, Chicago, IL. | handout | linksrecorded audio [mp3] | podcast [xml] | podcast [iTunes] |

Children’s Ministry Archive

As part of the long overdue process of rebuilding my personal website, the collection of children’s ministry resources that I’ve compiled, formerly located at has been moved and is now available at

Being rebuilt using the WordPress blogging platform, the archive is now searchable and features RSS feeds allowing for subscription to both new posts and comments.  Feel free to spread the word about the free resources I have posted.  If you’ve found them to be of benefit, I’d love to hear from you.