Friday, April 6, 2018

Dimensions - An Academic Research Engine

When it comes to searching for research studies and other academic articles many people turn to Google Scholar. But as your friendly librarian will tell you, there are still other databases that you should try. Dimensions is one such example of that.

Dimensions is a search engine focused on helping users discover research publications including clinical study reports. To help users get the whole picture, Dimensions will provide information about the grants that funded a study and report. You can filter Dimensions search results to show only open-access papers, to show only papers from a particular year, and according to field of research.

Dimensions is a search engine that will be of use primarily to university students. Some high school science teachers may find Dimensions useful for introducing their students to academic research related to clinical studies.

Listen to Padlet's CEO Explain Recent Changes

This week Padlet announced some big changes to their pricing structure. This came as a surprise to many long-time users of the service. As I mentioned earlier this week, some people didn't even know that Padlet has had a premium offering for years. That's a fact that Padlet's founder and CEO, Nitesh Goel, acknowledged last night in a podcast recorded with Jeff Bradbury. Jeff had Nitesh on to talk about the evolution of Padlet and the recent changes that have been made to the service. If you have been wondering why Padlet made changes or you just want to get some insight into the business side of ed tech, listen to Jeff's conversation with Nitesh.

New Science Lesson Plans from Storyboard That

Disclosure: Storyboard That is an advertiser on this blog. 

Storyboard That is known for its excellent storyboard creation tools. In addition to continuously developing new artwork and and new tools for storyboarding, the team at Storyboard That is always developing new lesson plans that anyone can access for free. The Storyboard That lesson plan collection contains more than 100 detailed lesson plans covering topics in language arts, science, social studies, and mathematics.

The latest additions to the Storyboard That lesson plan library are Modeling in Science and Chemical Reactions. The Modeling in Science lesson plan was designed to help teachers address the NGSS standard for developing and using models. In the lesson plan students will use storyboards to create models of concepts like force, the water cycle, and food webs.

The Chemical Reactions lesson plan introduces middle school students to chemical reactions that they can see in everyday life. The lesson plan also incorporates ideas from the aforementioned modeling lesson plan as part of the lesson plan includes creating storyboards to represent chemical reactions.

Learn more about how to use Storyboard That by watching my introductory video below. Or jump here for a playlist of tutorials.

How to Find & Make OneNote Templates

The more that I use it, the more I think that OneNote is a fantastic all-in-one product for note-taking, bookmarking, and general organization of your digital life. Like any robust product, OneNote has some features that you might overlook unless someone points them out. In my case, templates were a feature that I didn't notice until I had been using OneNote for a while. If you've been overlooking templates too, watch my short video to see how to find and how to make your own OneNote templates.

Applications for Education
OneNote's note-taking templates could help students streamline and organize the manner in which they take notes. If you have a structure that you prefer your students to us, create a template and share it with them. What I really like about OneNote is that you could create a note-taking template that allows your students to follow a structure, use handwriting, and then have handwriting converted to text (provided the student writes legibly).