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Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Group Discounts on Practical Ed Tech Courses

Learning a new skill is often better when you do it with a friend. That's why we recruit our friends to try yoga with us or go to that new rock climbing gym for the first time. And that's why for the rest of the year I am offering group discounts on three of my Practical Ed Tech courses.

Practical Ed Tech Coaching Group
Everyday since I announced it, someone has registered to join the 2018 Practical Ed Tech Coaching Group. To encourage you to encourage your colleagues to join with you, I am offering a "buy two, get two" promotion. Register with a colleague from your school district and you’ll each get to invite another colleague to register for free (must have same school district email domain to be eligible). Click here to learn more about group membership.

G Suite for Teachers
This is the on-demand version of my popular Getting Going With G Suite course. This is a new offering for 2018. T In this course you’ll learn everything you need to know to feel comfortable using all of the core G Suite tools with your students. This course is more than just a series of “how to” videos. You’ll be provided with concrete examples of activities that you can use and adapt to use in your classroom.

Register five people from the same school district and you can register five more for FREE! Groups can register with purchase orders. Click here to register today.

Teaching History With Technology
This on-demand course will help you develop engaging and challenging learning activities through the use of tools like Google Earth and Maps, video production tools, and virtual reality. You will also learn how to help your students become better researchers.

Register five people from the same school district and you can register five more for FREE! Groups can register with purchase orders. Click here to register today.

The Differences Between Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality

This morning I received an email from a reader who was wondering what the terms AR and VR mean. I get that question on a fairly regular basis these days. That's why earlier this year I recorded a video and posted a short slideshow that outlines the differences between augmented reality, virtual reality, and mixed reality. The video and the slides are embedded below.





As I mentioned last week, one of the first webinars for members of the 2018 Practical Ed Tech Coaching Group will cover using AR and VR in classrooms. Enrollment in the Practical Ed Tech Coaching Group is open now.

The Physics of Skiing

It's a snow day here in western Maine. For a skier like me, that means it's time to enjoy the snow with some time on the slopes. If you live in an area that has skiing, you might have some students that feel the same way that I do about snow. New snow equals a great reason to get outside. The next time your students talk about the fun of skiing, try to tie in this lesson plan from the University of Utah's math department.

The lesson plan could be used in conjunction with the National Science Foundation's video titled Science of the Olympic Winter Games - Downhill Science.

BandBlast - A Fun App for Learning to Play Music

BandBlast is a free app designed to help students learn to play music. There are many ways that students can use the BandBlast app. Whichever way that students end up using the app, they all have to start by selecting an instrument that they wish to play either virtually or physically. Students who want to play more than one instrument can create additional profiles within the app.

After creating a profile and choosing the instruments that they want to play, students can then play a game, record themselves playing an instrument along with a virtual band, watch videos about their chosen instruments, or embark on a music "mission."

BandBlast games are intended to help students develop rhythm and pitch skills. Rhythm games are played within the app by tapping on a tablet's screen. Pitch games are played by students playing physical instruments in response to the prompts in the app.

The recording section in BandBlast is where students can play their instruments along with the virtual band that plays on their iPads or Android tablets. There are about two dozen songs that students can choose from in BandBlast.

The "missions" in BandBlast are essentially small units of study for students to complete. Within each mission students will find two or three instructional videos, a couple of games, and recording activities.

Monday, December 11, 2017

The Science of Snowflakes

Here in western Maine we're expecting our second real snowstorm of the winter to arrive tonight. This has reminded me of a couple of educational videos that explain the science of snowflakes.

The Science of Snowflakes is a TED-Ed video lesson that explains how snowflakes are formed, why they're all different, and why seem to be "wetter" than others. The video also explains why all skiing is water skiing.


ByteSize Science also offers a good video about how snowflakes are formed.