## Monday, January 28, 2013

### 5 Good Mathematics Feeds for Teachers

I subscribe to roughly 300 blogs (honestly, I stopped keeping track a while ago). Usually, when I say that at conference or workshop the follow-up question I get goes something like this, "can you recommend some good blogs for X?" So this week I'm going to publish a short list each day of the blogs that usually come to mind when someone asks me to make a recommendation for a blog related to teaching a particular subject area. Today, I'm recommending five good mathematics feeds.

Even before I had the privilege to see him give a keynote in person and participate in a couple of his workshops, I was recommending Dan Meyer's blog to everyone that would listen. From publishing his entire algebra and geometry curricula to challenging the way that math instruction is delivered, Dan's work is remarkable. Watch Math Class Needs a Makeover to learn more about Dan's philosophy of teaching mathematics.

Whenever David Wees comments on one of my blog posts it's always insightful and it challenges my thinking. David brings those same qualities to his blog posts about mathematics instruction and using technology in the classroom. Read David's recent post about raising mathematicians to get a good sense of what he's about.

Colleen Young's Mathematics, Learning and Web 2.0 is a good blog to subscribe to for practical, do-now, mathematics instruction ideas. When you visit her blog make sure you check out the "I'm Looking For" and "Wolfram Alpha" tabs.

Mathematics and Multimedia written by Guillermo Bautista is the blog that I usually recommend when people ask me for recommendations for learning about GeoGebra. Guillermo's blog has a good collection of GeoGebra tutorials for both beginning and advanced users of GeoGebra.

Numberphile is a neat YouTube channel about fun number facts, rules of mathematics, and the ways that our brains handle numbers. There is currently110 videos in the Numberphile collection. The videos cover things like 998,001 and its Mysterious Recurring Decimals, Pi and Bouncing Balls, and 1 and Prime Numbers. I've embedded Numbers and Brains below.

(I've intentionally left Khan Academy off this list, that's too obvious).

A question that I often get when I work with elementary school teachers to help them get on the road to blogging goes like this, "can I restrict reading access to just my students and their parents?" The answer to that question is yes. The video below shows you how to do this if you're using Blogger.

Applications for Education
While I prefer to guide teachers in the direction of teaching their elementary school students not to reveal personally identifying information on classroom blogs, I also recognize that sometimes the only way a teacher will try blogging is if they can restrict access to just students and their parents. The directions below cover the same steps covered in the video above. (Click the images to enlarge them).

Step 1:

Step 2:

Step 3:

### This Link Will Self Destruct - Create Links to Share for a Limited Period of Time

This Link Will Self Destruct is a free service for sharing links that are accessible for a finite period of time. This Link Will Self Destruct shortens your URL to make it easier for others to copy or remember. TLWSD allows you to specify how long your shortened URL will be active. You can set a limit of just a few minutes, hours, or days. Password protecting your TWLSD links is an option too.

Applications for Education
This Link Will Self Destruct could be a good service to use when you need to shorten and share the long link to a WallWisher or TodaysMeet activity happening in your classroom.

### Visit the Wistia Learning Center for Professional Video Production Tips

Wistia is a video hosting service that I am currently using to host some of my videos. Recently, Wistia launched a Learning Center to teach people how to create better videos. Right now the Learning Center has eleven video lessons and it looks like more videos are on the way. Get started on the path to making better videos by learning how to adjust the lighting when you're using a webcam.

Get an introduction to the Learning Center in the video below.

### Five Good Feeds for U.S. History Teachers

I subscribe to roughly 300 blogs (honestly, I stopped keeping track a while ago). Usually, when I say that at conference or workshop the follow-up question I get goes something like this, "can you recommend some good blogs for X?" So this week I'm going to publish a short list each day of the blogs that usually come to mind when someone asks me to make a recommendation for a blog related to teaching a particular subject area. Since the bulk of my teaching experience is in social studies, I'm starting with that. Here are five feeds that U.S. History teachers should check out.

The US National Archives is an all around good resource for history teachers to have bookmarked. I've written about some of their services in the past (here and here) and today I'd like to remind you of the National Archives Today's Document feed. Every day Today's Document features a new image or document from the archives. The documents are usually accompanied by some additional research links and lesson plan resources.

Glenn Wiebe's History Tech blog is one that I've cited in some of my posts in the past. Glenn does a great job of blending tech, history, and current news into his posts. I particularly enjoyed this post about the Electoral College Election.

Glenn also developed Social Studies Central which houses a good collection of resources for social studies teachers.

I've featured the excellent video productions of Keith Hughes quite a few times in the past. If you're not familiar with the Hip Hughes History YouTube channel, go take a look at it right now. Keith does an excellent job of taking important events and themes in history and breaking them down into short, educational, and entertaining (if you're a history geek like me) lessons.

You can't teach U.S. History without teaching the Civil War. Teaching the Civil War With Technology, written by Jim Beeghley, has provided me with some good ideas to use in my own lessons. Make sure you give his podcast a listen too.

The Library of Congress offers a daily artifact feed similar to the one offered by the National Archives. Today in History from The Library of Congress offers a new image or document along with the story of the notable event or person connected to it.