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Thursday, July 9, 2015

ISTE Brainwaves

At the ISTE conference Bob Greenberg recorded dozens of short video segments with teachers talking about their passions. Bob is publishing those videos on his YouTube channel called The Brainwaves Video Anthology. My segment is embedded below (yes, I got sunburned the day before this was recorded).

Measure Yourself - Comparing the Feet of Animals

Measure Yourself is a fun, educational activity featured on the Lawrence Hall of Science website. Measure Yourself asks students to measure the size of their ears, feet, and overall height in centimeters. Students then plug those numbers into Measure Yourself and are shown a list of animals that have similar dimensions. I tried it and learned that my ears are almost as big as an armadillo's ears, my feet are longer than a bear's, and I'm taller than a grizzly bear walking on all four feet.

Applications for Education
Measure Yourself could be a fun way to introduce students to measurement using the metric system. The activity give students some familiar animals by which to gauge metric measurements.

Try Strikingly to Create Beautiful Webpages

Striking.ly is a service that can be used to create one page websites to show off your best digital work or to advertise an event. Striking.ly provides a variety of templates for digital portfolios and digital flyers. Each template can be customized by hovering your mouse on any element of the template and selecting the edit button. Free Striking.ly pages are assigned Striking.ly subdomains. Premium accounts can have custom domains.

Applications for Education
Creating a Striking.ly page could be a good way for students to showcase examples of their best images and videos. Students can also use Striking.ly pages to feature examples of their best writings.

A Nice Tool for Creating Animated Maps

Animaps is a free service built for the purpose of allowing users to create animated Google Maps. The basics of creating maps in Animaps is very similar the process for creating maps in Google Maps. The main benefit of using Animaps over Google Maps is that you can create a tour of your placemarks that plays through according to the timing that you specify. Another benefit is that you can build in colored shapes to expand and contract to demonstrate patterns. You can also import images to your map from Flickr, Picassa, and Facebook.

Applications for Education
Animaps could be a great tool for having students create tours of historic events. You could also have students create fictional stories that they illustrate on Animaps.