Friday, February 3, 2012

Gooru - Great Collections of Science and Math Resources

Gooru is a new service (still carrying the Alpha label) that aims to provide teachers and students with an extensive collection of videos, interactive displays, documents, diagrams, and quizzes for learning about topics in math and science.

As a Gooru member you have access to hundreds of resources according to subject areas such as chemistry, biology, ecology, algebra, calculus, and more. Within each subject area you can look for resources according to media type such as video, interactive display, slides, text, and lesson plans. When you find resources that you want to use, drag them to the resources folder within your account. Gooru also offers you the option to add resources to your folders even if you did not find them within Gooru.

Applications for Education
Gooru could be a great place for math and science teachers to locate lesson plans and other materials to use in their classrooms. Students can create Gooru accounts to find useful review materials and take practice tests on the subjects they're studying.

Try Yahoo to Find Your Next iPad or Android App

For a lot of us Yahoo is kind of the forgotten search engine. I honestly can't tell you when the last time I used it was until today when I learned through Android Central that Yahoo has an app search setting.

At you can search for Android and iOS apps. You can filter results according to OS, price, and category. I gave it a try and I have to say that the search results page is quite a bit nicer than that of the search results page in the Android Market. The look doesn't affect the effectiveness of the search tool, but it is a nice aspect of Yahoo App Search. Give Yahoo App Search a try the next time you're looking for a new app for your Android or iOS device.

Cross posted on

Trello Helps You Organize Group Projects

Trello is a free service designed to help individuals and groups manage tasks. Trello's user interface features a basic virtual corkboard-like space to which you and your collaborators can pin task cards. Task cards can be arranged into columns such as "to do," "in progress," and "completed." You can name and arrange the columns however you see fit. Each task card on your Trello board can be assigned to individuals in your group. Trello allows you to create and be a member of multiple boards.

The video below offers a detailed introduction to Trello.

To start using Trello you can register for a Trello account of sign up using your Google Account credentials.

Applications for Education
For students working on group projects Trello could be a great tool for assigning and keeping track of the responsibilities of each group member.

History of the Indus Valley Civilization in Ten Minutes

Crash Course is a small YouTube channel featuring a couple of short, fast-paced video lessons about World History. The two history videos on the channel right now are Indus Valley Civilization and The Agricultural Revolution. Both videos move very quickly, almost frantically at times, making them more like entertaining overviews of these topics than serious lessons. There are a couple of innuendos thrown into both videos, so watch them and use your discretion before showing them in your classroom.

H/T to Open Culture

Using Google Scholar for Education

Google Scholar is a great search tool that too often is overlooked by teachers and students. In the 45 minute video below, Google Search Engineer Daniel Russell walks viewers through using Google Scholar to get the best results.

Applications for Education
This video is part of Google's larger Search Education program through which you can find other webinar recordings, lessons for teaching search, and other reference materials that are useful for teaching and learning about best search techniques.

Try the New Wiki Summarizer Features

Last year I discovered Wiki Summarizer and almost immediately started sharing it in many of my presentations. Wiki Summarizer is a site that allows you to search Wikipedia, have articles summarized by key points, and provides lists of articles that are related to your original search. Recently, Wiki Summarizer got a few nice upgrades that should prove to be useful.

In an effort to make Wiki Summarizer more visually appealing and easier to navigate, Wiki Summarizer offers expandable webs of related articles. For example, I searched for "German Shepherd" and a web of related terms was created. Clicking on the "+" symbol next to each term opens a new element of the web. All parts of the web link to Wikipedia articles.

If your students are in the habit of printing articles that they find online, an upgrade to Wiki Summarizer that you should note is the option to export articles to a text document. The articles are exported in a clean, linear outline that is very easy to read.

Wiki Summarizer now offers hyperlinked word clouds for every Wikipedia article. You can click on any word in the word clouds to jump to the corresponding Wikipedia article.
Click to view full size image.

Applications for Education
Wiki Summarizer could be a good tool to for students who are just starting a research assignment and are not quite sure what terms to use or what topics to explore. By using the Wiki Summarizer web view or word cloud view students will be able to find some terms and topics that could help them alter and or direct their searches. In other words, Wiki Summarizer could help students who have a very broad research topic narrow down their searches.

To learn more about how Wikipedia functions and strives to maintain reliability watch Common Craft's explanation of Wikipedia in the video below.

(If you're reading this in RSS you will have to click through to watch the video).