Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Picadilo - A Robust and Free Photo Editing Tool

Picadilo is a free image editing service that offers a lot of useful tools. To use Picadilo you do not have to create an account on the service. To get started just upload a picture and start editing. After your image is uploaded you can re-size it, crop it, add filters, touch-it up, add text, and put digital frames around your pictures. When you're happy with your edited image you can download it and or share it on Facebook.

Applications for Education
If you're looking for an image editing tool that doesn't require your students to install any software or create online accounts, give Picadillo a try.

China and the U.S. Compared In One Simple Graphic

On The Guardian's Data Blog I found the following graphic that does a nice job of depicting the statistical differences between China and the United States. The chart shows comparisons of things like GDP per capita, government bank accounts, population, pollution, and Internet use. A full explanation of the graphic including explanations of data points and commentary from readers is available here.  

Applications for Education
China v the U.S. could be a good graphic to use in an introductory lesson social studies lesson on China. I would use the graphic and ask students to share their ideas for possible explanations in the statistical differences in the various categories on the chart.

Why Do We Have Body Hair? A Short Lesson for Health Classes

In today's episode of Sci Show Hank Green explains body hair. Viewers will learn why humans have it and learn about the different types of body hair. Green also explains how body hair grows and why only the hair on your head could grow to Repunzel-like lengths. The video is embedded below.

Applications for Education
I watched the video and immediately thought of middle school students. The video tackles a lot of the questions that I would anticipate middle school students asking about the topic in a health class or biology class.

Pin to Win an iPad Mini from MasteryConnect

Last month MasteryConnect launched a new Pinterest-like feature called Resource Boards. This is a free feature that teachers can use to create collections of resources that are aligned to Common Core standards. You can add materials to your MasteryConnect Resource Boards through the MasteryConnect browser bookmarklet available here.

At the end of this month MasteryConnect is going to give away an iPad mini to the teacher who has pinned the most resources. Resources must include alignment to Common Core standards. Second prize and third prizes are $100 and $50 Amazon gift cards. You can learn more about the contest here.

Disclosure: MasteryConnect has been an advertiser on Free Technology for Teachers since 2011.

An Interactive Map of Rising Sea Levels

The October issue of National Geographic includes a feature about glacial meltdown. An interactive map of rising sea levels complements the feature. The shows viewers what the coastlines of every continent would like if sea levels were to rise 216 feet. The map has an option to display major cities as reference points for viewers.

Applications for Education
National Geographic's interactive map of rising sea levels could be a prompt for a math lesson in which students explore how scientists determine how much land would be covered by water due to sea levels rising. Of course, the map is also just a good way for students to see the potential long-term effects of climate change.