Monday, July 26, 2010

Learn Boost - Free Online Gradebook

Learn Boost is a new free gradebook system that looks promising. Learn Boost is still in a closed testing mode, but according to their product tour Learn Boost will offer a lesson plan manager that will allow teachers to match state and national standards to their lesson plans. Learn Boost also plans to give teachers the option to integrate their Google Calendars into their Learn Boost accounts. Visit TechCrunch to learn more about Learn Boost.

Applications for Education
Learn Boost could provide schools and teachers with an excellent alternative to expensive student management systems.

Here are some related items that may be of interest to you:
Schoology - Online Course Management
Gradebook Portal - Free Online Gradebook
RCampus - Create and Conduct Courses Online

Music from North Korea & Around the Globe

The BBC Radio World Music Archive is comprised of music recordings gathered over the course of ten years from countries all over the globe. The collection includes recordings from some dangerous and hard to reach places like North Korea and Iraq. In fact, the BBC reports that the recording from North Korea is the first radio recording done by anyone outside of the North Korean government.

Applications for Education
The BBC World Music Archive could be a good resource for teaching lessons on world culture through music.

Here are some related items that may be of interest to you:
Arts Edge - Podcasts and Lesson Plans
Classics for Kids - Classical Music Lesson Plans
Music Theory Lessons and Tutorials

Search Credible - 26 Search Engines in One

Search Credible is a search service that allows you to access 26 different search engines from one location. Included in the list of search engines Search Credible searches are Wolfram Alpha, EBSCO, ERIC, and the usual suspects such as Google, Bing, and Yahoo. To use Search Credible just enter your search term(s) then click on the search engine of your choice.

Applications for Education
Search Credible's utility for teachers is that instead of having to tell students to go to multiple individual search engines it gives them one place to direct their students to. Teachers could use Search Credible as the basis for a comparison exercise in which students evaluate and compare different sources of information on the same topic.

Here are some related items that may be of interest to you:
Beyond Google - Improve Your Search Results
Mashpedia - The Real-time Encyclopedia
Wolfram Alpha for Educators - Free Lesson Plans

Learn It in 5 - Tech How-to Videos for Teachers

Learn It In 5 is a relatively new site that features short how-to videos for teachers. The videos are intended to help teachers quickly learn how to use some of the the web tools are essential to being a successful user of classroom technology. The videos cover tools like Skype, Diigo, VoiceThread, and more. I learned about Learn It In 5 from Lee Kolbert who directed my attention to the video about Google Reader embedded below.

Applications for Education
Videos like those found on Learn It In 5 can be great resources for helping teachers learn about web-based tools they can use in their classrooms.

Here are some related items that may be of interest to you:
Google for Teachers - Free Ebook
Google for Teachers II - Free Ebook
Seven Videos All Educators Should Watch

Google Compass - Plot and Record Routes

The Barcelona Field Studies Centre has developed a neat little compass tool that works with Google Maps. Google Compass overlays a compass on a Google Map. Users can drag the compass and position it to point in any direction. Users can then plot a route on the map using the compass. The compass tool will account for magnetic declination when necessary. The compass tool will also provide users with the coordinates of their routes.

Applications for Education
Google Compass could be used to teach students about the difference between magnetic north and true north. Students can position the compass on various places on the map to see how the difference between magnetic north and true north varies depending upon where you are on the globe.

Here are some related items that may be of interest to you:
Google Earth Across the Curriculum
Free 33 Page Guide - Google for Teachers
Using Maps in an Elementary School Math Lesson