Friday, October 30, 2009

Cool Food Kidz Teaches Kids About Diet & Fitness

Cool Food Kidz is a kid-friendly website about nutrition, exercise, and general health. Cool Food Kidz provides easy-to-read lists of things they can do to take care of their health. For example, there is a list of "building healthy habits" tips which walks kids through ten basic things they can do to keep themselves healthy. Cool Food Kidz also provides students with tips for dental health and tips for keeping their brains sharp. The tips for eating out section offers advice to students on picking a healthy lunch and healthy snack foods.

Applications for Education
Cool Food Kidz could be a good resource for elementary and middle school health teachers.

Here are some related items that may be of interest to you:
10 Good Videos About Flu Prevention

Food Play - Resources About Food and Diet
Sugar Stacks - How Much Sugar is in Your Snack?

Week In Review - The Most Popular Items

It's Friday and that means it's time for another Free Technology for Teachers week in review. As I do each Friday, I've compiled a list of seven most popular items of the last week. If you've been busy and not able to keep up with your RSS reader or email, the week in review provides a good chance to catch up on the posts that were most popular with other readers.

Here are the seven most popular items of the last seven days:
1. Zero Interesting Ways to Use Audio In the Classroom?
2. 20 Ways to Use Comics In Your Classroom
3. Beyond Google - Improve Your Search Results (free ebooklet)
4. Every Stock Photo - Search Free Photos
5. TED Talk - Don't Eat the Marshmallow
6. Lee Lefever Explains Where Goldfish Come From
7. Galapagos Rap

The list above is based on item clicks and views. If you ever miss the week in review post, you can always check out the Post Rank widget embedded in the right column of the blog. Post Rank displays the most popular blog entries at any given time.

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LitCharts - 10 Page Outlines of Classic Literature

LitCharts is a service that provides condensed outlines and summaries of classic literature. The outlines and summaries are far shorter than those you would find in Sparknotes or Cliffnotes. Most of the outlines and summaries are ten pages, give or take a page or two. What I like about LitCharts is that they color code the themes addressed and symbolism within a particular work. The color coding makes it easy to quickly pick out the themes and symbols in each chapter of a book.

LitCharts can be viewed online, downloaded as PDFs, or accessed through iPhone apps.

Thanks to Make Use Of for making me aware of LitCharts.

Applications for Education
LitCharts provides nice outlines and summaries but doesn't provide so much information that a student can avoid actually reading the books you've assigned to them. In this way LitCharts could be useful study aids for students.

For Music Teachers - The Euphonium Gets a New Voice

Perhaps because I played both the Euphonium and the Tuba in high school (at one point I thought of majoring in music) I have listened with enjoyment to this young man's interesting Euphonium performance three times today. If you're a music teacher, this two minute performance might be something you'd like to share with your students to encourage them to develop their improvisation skills.

This video originally appeared on the TED Talks blog.

Annenberg Offers Video-based Lesson Plans

Videos can be a good teaching resource, but they need to be used as part of lesson rather than being the lesson. Annenberg Media provides lesson plans that model using video as a part of the lesson rather than using video as the lesson. Lesson plans are categorized by content and grade level. Most of the lesson plans include free online videos. To find lessons that include free online videos look for a small "VOD" symbol attached near the title of each lesson plan. Clicking the VOD symbol will launch a video player in a new window.

Applications for Education
Earlier in my teaching career I was guilty of using videos as the lesson rather than a part of the lesson. I can confidently say that I'm not the only social studies teacher guilty of that. Fortunately for my students, I learned from my mistakes and have since learned to use video (mostly short ones these days) as a part of my lesson plans rather than using videos as my lesson plans. Annenberg Media's free media-based lesson plans provide teachers with lesson plans using video as a part of a lesson plan for a wide variety of topics and grade levels.