Saturday, January 22, 2011

Week in Review - Math Remains on Top

A good Saturday morning (day, evening) to you from snowy and cold Maine. This week in Maine we had the trifecta of snow-related alterations to our school schedules (early dismissal, late start, and complete cancellation). That gave me the opportunity to do some extra reading, writing, and planning. And out of that came a new ebook project that I think you'll like when it's done (look for it before the end of the month). 

For the third week in a row, my list of 11 Mathematics Resources to Try in 2011 topped the list of the most read posts of the week.

Here are the rest of the most popular posts of the week:
2. What I Read First or RSS Recommendations
3. Nine Ways to Find Teachers on Twitter
4. iPhones, Google Forms, and Walkthroughs
5. Learn About Science With the Scitable App
6. Put the Khan Academy on Your Mobile Device
7. Drop Mocks - A Simple Way to Share Image Galleries

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Good Guides to Understanding Your PC Inside & Out

Make Use Of is one of my favorite tech sites because almost every day I find something useful on it. Yesterday, I discovered Your PC Inside and Out on Make Use Of. Your PC Inside and Out is actually two excellent guides to understanding the various parts of a personal computer and how those parts work together. Part 1 covers chassis, power supply, and motherboard. Part 2 covers CPU, RAM, storage, video card, and expansion. You can view the guides on Scribd (part 1, part 2) or download them as PDFs from the Make Use Of Guides page. I recommend downloading them as I found it easier to read them that way. PC Inside and Out Part 1

Applications for Education
As I read through these guides I couldn't help but think of a recent post by Gary Stager and the subsequent comments by me, him, and others. Many things were covered in Gary's post and in the comments, but what I took away from it (and from having heard Gary speak live) was the idea that students should have knowledge of how the technology they use works. While they're probably not going to go out an build their own computers after reading it, Your PC Inside and Out is a good primer to understanding the basic components of how a PC works.

YouTube Invites You to Ask President Obama

Next week on January 27 at 2:30pm (EST) President Obama will respond, in a live interview, to questions asked by citizens through YouTube. Submit your questions by January 25 via video or text at Visitors to the site will then vote for their favorite questions to be addressed by President Obama.

Here are some suggestions from the YouTube blog:
  1. Video questions are highly preferred (though we also accept text). Videos should be about 20 seconds long and be sure to ask the question directly.
  2. Speak clearly and try to film in a place with minimal background noise. Keep the camera as still as possible.
  3. Feel free to be creative (use props, charts, etc.) to help your question stand out. If you have time, find an interesting backdrop that may help reinforce your message.
  4. Submit your question early. The final deadline is Wednesday January 25 at midnight ET.
Applications for Education
For someone who teaches US Civics, this is a good opportunity to get students thinking about what they would ask the President. And although the crowd voting will ultimately decide, it's also a potential opportunity to have their questions addressed by the President himself.