Sunday, April 13, 2008

Free Technology For Teachers: Hulu Adds New Features

Hulu, the video service featuring television and movies owned by NBC, Fox, and other media corporations has added a couple of new features. Hulu has added new sharing options in addition to normal embedding options. Read "application for education" below to find out about the best new feature for teachers.

Application for Education
Hulu now allows users to share all or part of video. This is particularly useful if you wish to show just a part of video to your students. Rather than showing the entire video or fast forwarding through the video (often difficult if your network is slow) users can cut and embed just a segment of a video. This editing option is very easy to use as you can see in the image below. Simply drag the start and end bars to adjust the length of the video. The video segment I've included is about two minutes I extracted from the one hour broadcast of the first episode of NBC's Today Show.

Free Technology For Teachers: Sheppard Software - Activities for All Grades and Subjects

Sheppard Software has a great collection of free educational software that teachers and students can download for Windows operating systems. (Some programs may work with Mac, but I couldn't make them work correctly on my Mac).

Not to worry tough Mac users because Sheppard Software has a fantastic collection of free web-based educational games. As you can see in the image below, Sheppard Software's free games cover Science, Math, Social Studies, and Language Arts. Most of the games are appropriate for elementary and middle school students, but some games are appropriate for high school students. The geography games are particularly good.

Applications for Education
Educational games are good way for students to practice skills and use prior learning. Educational games have value for teachers in heterogeneous classrooms as educational games are a good tool for differentiating instruction.
One of the highlights of the geography game about Asia is that students can hear country names pronounced. This is particularly useful for American students who can struggle with the pronunciation of country names like Kyrgyzstan or Tajikistan.

Free Technology For Teachers: The Shrinking World

The CBS Sunday Morning Show features a segment called Fast Draw. This Fast Draw segment shows and tells a short story of how the world has shrunk because of technology.