Monday, June 21, 2010

Zoho Challenge Adds Comprehensive Questions

Zoho Challenge is a part of the Zoho suite of document, presentation, and office productivity tools. Zoho Challenge is a tool that allows you to create and administer quizzes online. Today, Zoho announced that you can now write questions based upon a paragraph statement, an image, or a combination of both. Learn more about Zoho Challenge's comprehensive questions option in the video below.

Here's some of what I've previously written about Zoho Challenge.
Zoho Challenge allows users to create customized tests for students to take online. Zoho Challenge tests can be written with multiple choice or open-ended questions or a combination of both. Tests created with Zoho Challenge can have a time limit imposed or be given without a time limit. Each test can be individually assigned to test takers. Finally, when a test is created with Zoho Challenge the test creator can decide whether or not the test taker can see the results.

Here are some related resources that may be of interest to you:
Fluid Surveys - Create Surveys With Multiple Response Formats
How to Publish a Quiz Using Google Docs

An Immersive Virtual Tour of the Grand Canyon

This spring Thomas Hayden, one of the original producers of Google Streetview Imagery, recorded a trip through the Grand Canyon. Hayden recorded his trip using Gigapan technology. Gigapan allows photographers to capture complete 360 x 360 degree images. The images are then stitched together to allow viewers to explore the entire scene. For the tour of the Grand Canyon Hayden geolocated each image using the Google Earth browser plugin. You can now virtually tour the Grand Canyon through Thomas Hayden's Gigapan photography. (Note: you do need the Google Earth browser plug-in to view the scenes in the tour). In addition to the Gigapan imagery, Hayden has also published 48 videos from the trip. Some of the videos do a nice job of explaining the geology of the Grand Canyon's many features.

Applications for EducationOne of the special education teachers at my school used to teach an entire unit on geology by walking students through the Grand Canyon with pictures she had taken. Hayden's Gigapan imagery would enable more teachers to use the same model for teaching geology.
Here are some related items that may be of interest to you:
Tour Mount Redoubt in Google Earth
Forces of Nature - Earth Science Resources

The Volcanoes of Yellowstone

TimeMaps - A Journey Through History

TimeMaps is best described as a mash-up of encyclopedia, timeline, and map elements. TimeMaps' world map is designed as an overview of the development of the world's societies. The map's timeline begins in 3500BC and concludes in 2005AD. Click on the timeline's icons or on the map's icons to learn more about each place represented on the map. The map changes as you progress through the timeline. For example, the 3500BC map represents only five places while the 1871AD map highlights places all over the globe.

Applications for Education
The information provided by TimeMaps is typical of the information you might find in an encyclopedia for elementary or middle school students. The appeal of the TimeMaps is that students can see where the places they're reading about are in global context. For example, if students look at the map in the 1400's they might better understand why Europeans thought they were discovering a new world in 1492 and beyond.

Here are some related items that may be of interest to you:
Historic Maps in K-12 Classrooms
Maps of War - Animated Thematic Maps
4 Ways to View the World in Panoramic

Measure the Impact of Asteroids & Atomic Bombs

Carlos Labs, a data architecture and data integration firm in Australia, has developed two Google Maps-based widgets that demonstrate the range of atomic weapons and the size of areas that could be affected by asteroid impacts.

Ground Zero shows the size of an area that would be affected by the impact of an asteroid or the detonation of an atomic bomb. Type a city name into the Ground Zero widget to see a representation of the size of the area affected by an atomic bomb or asteroid impact.

Missile Range Map Tool is a widget that shows the range of various weapons. Select a weapon from the list then Missile Range Map Tool will show the range of that weapon.

Both the Ground Zero and Missile Range Map Tool are widgets that can be embedded into your blog or website. I've embedded the Ground Zero widget below.

H/T to Instructify for the Ground Zero widget.

Applications for Education
One of the challenges history teachers face when explaining the impact of Harry Truman's WWII decision to drop atomic bombs on Japan is getting students to understand the gravity of Truman's decision. The Ground Zero widget allows teachers to move the bomb over a familiar location so that students can better visualize the impact of atomic bombs.

Here are some related items that may be of interest to you:
10 Resources for Teaching and Learning About WWII
National Atlas Map Maker
Atlas of World War II