Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The State of the Internet 2009

Using data from the Pew Research Center, Technorati, and other organizations, Focus has produced an infographic about Internet use and Internet access in 2009. The State of the Internet 2009 highlights who uses the Internet and how much they use it. Some of the statistics that may be of interest to educators are: average broadband speed in the US is only one third the speed of that found in France and just one fifteenth the speed of that found in Japan. Another key statistic while not ground-breaking is representative of one of the challenges facing those of us in poorer districts, broadband access is lowest among households earning less than $30,000/year. View the complete infographic here.

Mashable, which is where I first learned about this infographic, has some commentary on the infographic that you might also be interested in reading.

Digital Nation - Life on the Virtual Frontier

FRONTLINE's Digital Nation program premieres tonight on PBS. But, if the program is too late for you for a school night, you can watch the program online. Much of the content associated with the program has been available online for a while. One piece of that content, the Digital Native Map, was highlighted earlier this week by Wesley Fryer. The Digital Native Map features a 24 year old named "Wen-Jay." Click on a part of Wen-Jay to learn about how digital natives function. For example, click on her head and you'll learn that it takes 15 minutes for the brain to fully refocus on a task after replying to an email or IM.

Below is the first segment of Digital Nation - Life on the Virtual Frontier.

Teachers may be particularly interested in the Learning section of Digital Nation. In the Learning section you will find interviews with teachers, administrators, and other stake-holders in education reform. Here's a video from the Learning section of Digital Nation.

Nourish Interactive - Great Site for Health Teachers

Nourish Interactive is a great resource for elementary school health and nutrition teachers. Nourish Interactive offers lesson plans, printable guides and forms, resources for parents, and games for students. In the printables section teachers will find things like fun coloring pages as well as educational pages like "name the food group" and "exercise tracking sheets." The parents' section of Nourish Interactive offers parents tips on teaching healthy eating habits at home. The parents' section also offers tips and recipes for cooking healthy food with kids. The games section of Nourish Interactive contains ten online games for elementary school students. The games are designed to reinforce the lessons learned from parents and teachers using the teaching resources on Nourish Interactive.

Applications for Education
To reach more students and parents most of the resources on Nourish Interactive are available in English and Spanish. The printable resources could be good to send home with students as a homework assignment to do with parents.

Here are some related items that may be of interest to you:
Food Play - Resources About Food and Diet
Sugar Stacks - How Much Sugar is in Your Snack?

Cool Food Kidz Teaches Kids About Diet & Fitness

Google Apps for Education FAQs Answered

As funding becomes tighter and schools are looking for ways to save, switching to Google Apps for Education makes sense for many school districts. The decision is one that is often preceded by a lot of questions from school boards and school administrators. To answer some of the more common questions like "are there ads on Google Apps for Education?" and "what about COPPA compliance?" Google has released a PDF addressing those common questions.

If you're trying convince the decision-makers in your school district to switch to Google Apps for Education, this FAQ sheet is a must-read and a must-share.

50th Anniversary of the Greensboro Four

This week marks the fiftieth anniversary of the Greensboro Four's sit-in at a Greensboro, North Carolina lunch counter. Today's episode of CNN Student News has a short clip featuring one of the four, Major General Joseph McNeil (RET). Watch the video below.

For more educational resources about the Greensboro Four, check out Larry Ferlazzo's list of The Best Sites to Learn About the Greensboro Sit-ins.