Friday, October 11, 2013

Winning Videos from Next Vista's Latest Video Contest

Next Vista for Learning is the first video sharing site that I recommend to teachers looking for alternatives to YouTube. Videos on Next Vista are made by teachers and students for teachers and students. Throughout the school year Next Vista hosts video creation contests for students and teachers. The winners of Next Vista's summer contest were just announced. The winning video from the student, teacher, and collaborative categories are embedded below in that sequence.

Dictionary Bubble - Double Click Words to See Definitions and Synonyms

Dictionary Bubble is a free Chrome extension that provides definitions and synonyms for any word that you double-click in an online article. The extension will also provide an audio pronunciation of the words on which you double-click. If highlighting and or using keyboard commands is more your style, you can customize the extension to response to highlights and keyboard shortcuts.

Applications for Education
Dictionary Bubble could be useful to students who need a little assistance with the definitions and or pronunciations of new words that they encounter in an online reading assignment.

H/T to Addictive Tips

Teacher Librarians at the Heart of Student Learning

Next week I am speaking at the Washington Library Media Association's annual conference in Yakima. I spoke there in 2011 and had a wonderful time with the teacher librarians that I met in my workshops. Craig Seasholes who invited me to the conference recently shared with me a nice video about what teacher librarians mean to students and schools. The video is embedded below. I think it is a good reminder of how important teacher librarians are.

Daniel Russell's Ten Favorite Search Challenges (Today)

Many times over the last few years I have mentioned how Daniel Russell's work has influenced the way that I use Google Search and how I teach others to use it. In fact, his work prompted me to start teaching others how to craft search challenge activities for students (example 1, example 2). This morning on Google+ Daniel Russell posted the slides of his ten favorite search challenges. As he noted in his Google+ post, these are his favorite challenges today and tomorrow they could be different.

Applications for Education
What I love about the search challenges Daniel Russell shares is that they force students to go beyond the basic Google search tools and to really think about their search strategies. The last slide in the slidedeck contains ten things to think about when you are trying to solve a search challenge.

If you haven't seen in before you also may want to take a look at my PDF, Ten Techniques to Make Yourself A Google Search Star.