Thursday, November 3, 2011

Searcheeze - Collaboratively Curate the Web

Searcheeze is a relatively new and neat service for curating the web with your friends. Searcheeze is basically a social bookmarking service with an extra publishing feature added to it.

Here's how it works. Searcheeze provides a bookmarklet for bookmarking the things you find online. When you click the bookmarklet it opens up a sidebar to which you can drag as much highlighted text as you like from the webpage you're viewing. From that sidebar you can specify which of your collections of bookmarks you want send your highlighted content and bookmarks to. Then back in your Searcheeze account you can arrange your content and publish it for others to see. If you want to curate content with other Searcheeze users you can do so by sharing a collection and working together to add to it.

The video below offers a short overview of Searcheeze.

Searcheeze - Search collaboration made easy! from Searcheeze on Vimeo.

Applications for Education
Searcheeze could be a good service for students to use when working together on collaborative research assignments. One of the practical features of Searcheeze that could be beneficial for students is Searcheeze's capacity for allowing users to drag and drop as much content as they need from a webpage into their bookmarks. By doing that students can avoid the scenario in which they bookmark a page, but later cannot remember what it was on that page that they wanted to cite in their essays or other projects.

Typing Adventure - A Fun Little Typing Game

Typing Adventure is a nice little game that young students can use to practice their typing skills. To play the game students just have to visit the game site, read the directions, and press start. The game scenario presented to students is a character leaping from stepping stone to stepping stone. To move along the path students have to type the letters of the stones they want to jump to. Students earn points based on speed and accuracy.

H/T to Kevin Jarrett.

For more typing games and lessons, please click here.

Trends Map - Follow Twitter Trends on Google Maps

One of the classes that I used to really enjoy teaching was a current events course for 9th grade students. I enjoyed in it because the topics of discussion were always changing. I taught that class before Twitter emerged on the scene, but if Twitter had been available I think I would have utilized Trends Map to discover the stories that people were talking about around the world.

Trends Map is a Google Maps display of topics current trending on Twitter. The map displays the trends according to their locations. If you want to see what people are talking about in France, just use the map to zoom-in on France and see the topics that are trending.

The Tekzilla Daily episode embedded below shows Trends Map in action.

Applications for Education
Trends Map could be useful in a current events course. You could use the map to see get a sense of what stories are important to different groups around the world. Depending on the topic, that trend could lead you to article links, videos, and other useful current events discussion materials for you and your students.

iMendi Now Offers Russian and Arabic Vocabulary Practice

iMendi, a nice little site for practicing vocabulary in the languages you're trying to learn, recently added support for Russian and Arabic words. This brings the total number of languages you can practice on iMendi to nine. You can now practice vocabulary in English, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, French, German, Russian, Arabic, and Czech.

To use iMendi just select the language you speak and select the language you want to learn. iMendi then gives you the choice of choosing a lesson (level 1, level 2, etc) or trying a randomly chosen lesson. The "lessons" are really just simple vocabulary matching exercises with a score and the correct answers revealed at the end.

Applications for Education
Because it doesn't provide any direct instruction, iMendi's best purpose is as place where students can practice vocabulary words and terms. iMendi's "about" page mentions some future features that could make the site a little more useful in classrooms.