Wednesday, October 29, 2008

170+ Intelligent, Educational YouTube Videos

Sorting through YouTube for useful, educational videos can be time consuming and frustrating. For those of you who have ever searched for and wonder if there is any educational material on YouTube, check out these collections; 100 Best YouTube Videos for teachers compiled by Smart and Signs of Intelligent Life at YouTube from Open Culture.

Unfortunately, YouTube is blocked in many school districts, if you're in one of those districts you may want to check out these alternatives.

Useful New Features on PB Wiki

PB Wiki, the free wiki platform that I introduced to one of my school districts curriculum committees, has announced some great new features for educators. First, PB Wiki has substantially increased the storage space given to free account users. The storage space has increased from 10mb to 2000mb. PB Wiki now allows users to upload files in bulk. A search option has been added to make it easier to find content within your wiki.

The short video below explains and demonstrates the improvements to PB Wiki.

Document Management for Educators from PBwikiWebinars on Vimeo.

Free Website Translation - Useful for ESL Teachers

Convey This is a free service that can be added to any website or blog to translate text content. Convey This is a button similar in style to the "bookmark" button that you see at the end of every post on Free Technology for Teachers. Visitors simply hit the "translate" button and the content is made available in their choice of language. To see Convey This in action visit the Center Networks post about Convey This.

Applications for Education
Convey This could be a good addition to the blog or wiki of an ESL teacher. If you're an ESL teacher maintaining a blog for your students and parents adding a Convey This button might make your updates more accessible to parents. Convey This might also be of use to school districts serving a population in which may parents may not speak English as their first language. Adding the Convey This widget to your district's website could help increase the engagement of those parents.

Find Google's Secrets on Simply Google

Simply Google is not a Google Product, but a website about all of the great things that Google offers for free. Simply Google provides visitors with a list of the products Google offers and links to those products. Simply Google isn't breaking any new ground, but it could be a nice resource for those people that are just beginning to get comfortable with cloud computing and would like to learn a little more.

Two for Next Tuesday

With election day less than one week away, I thought I would share a couple of resources that Social Studies teachers might find useful. The Political Machine Express is a free game that students can use to explore the campaigning process. Students play the game as McCain, Obama, Palin, or Biden. The game was recommended to me by a reader of this blog. The one problem with the game is that it is only available for Windows.

Current TV has created an Election Night 2008 page to which users can contribute content. Current TV is looking for videos of election day parties. For high school teachers and students this might be a good opportunity to share how they are marking the election day. The best videos will be featured on Current TV's coverage of the election. If your class is helping to get people to the polls, register voters, or other civic project creating a video could be a good way to recognize the efforts of your students.