Thursday, October 25, 2012

The 25 Worst Passwords of the Year and How to Create Better Passwords

The CNN Tech blog recently published a list of the worst passwords of 2012. The top of the list includes all of the things that you might expect like "abc123," "password," and "qwerty." Hopefully, you and your students are not using any of the passwords on the list.

But if you or one of your students are using weak password, try one of these three free tools to create a strong password. If you prefer to create your own password rather than rely on a random password generator, watch the video below for suggestions on forming strong passwords.

One Hundred Free Books for Your Kindle

One Hundred Free Books is a website that offers free Kindle books on a daily basis. On One Hundred Free Books you can browse for free Kindle books by genre or search by title. The list of books changes constantly as new books become available for free and others are pulled from the free collection. You can subscribe to the website to keep up with the new releases of free books.

Applications for Education
One Hundred Free Books could provide you with a good place through which you can build your library of Kindle books for your students without spending a dime.

EduCam Classroom - Share Your Document Camera Images

EduCam is a new Android and iPad app that users of Flexcam an Ken-A-Vision document cameras may find useful. The EduCam app allows your students to view images captured with your document camera. Students can view images on their iPads and Android tablets. The images that they view they can also annotate and draw on. Students can submit their annotated images to their instructors through the EduCam viewer app.

Click here for the EduCam iPad app. Click here for the EduCam Android app.

Applications for Education
The EduCam viewer app could be a good app to have your students use to annotate images that you share with them. In a social studies course I might have my students use the app to annotate a primary source document that I share with them. In a biology course I might share a diagram of a cell and ask my students to label it and explain the structure of the cell.

Three Free Halloween iPad Apps

Halloween is less than one week away. This afternoon I spent some time trying out a variety of Halloween-themed iPad apps. I found a lot of paid apps that are good, but only a few that I think are worth telling you about. These are the three that I some elementary school teachers will like.

Halloween eBook by Visuals Work is a simple, customizable Halloween story. The short story is about a friendly vampire, monster, and mummy preparing to go trick or treating. Students "find" each one of these as they read the story. To customize the story you can upload students' pictures so that they appear next to the mummy in the story.

Halloween Word Search is a simple word search application that has a Halloween theme. All of the words in the app have a Halloween theme.

Carve a Pumpkin allows students to carve virtual pumpkins. There are five types of pumpkins to choose from. Students can carve their pumpkins using templates in the app or they can carve free-hand.

Video Projects and Common Core Standards

Last week I ran two workshops on video creation in the classroom. A part of that workshop was a discussion of Common Core standards that can be addressed through video creation projects. I've pulled out some of the standards that I think a video creation project can address. The standards that I chose all came from the Language Arts standards. I would love to hear from mathematics teachers who have ideas about Common Core standards that can be addressed through video creation projects.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.W.2 Write informative/explanatory texts to examine and convey complex ideas and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.W.3 Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, well-chosen details and well-structured event sequences.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.W.7 Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects based on focused questions, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.W.8 Gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources, assess the credibility and accuracy of each source, and integrate the information while avoiding plagiarism.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.W.9 Draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.1e Provide a concluding statement or section that follows from and supports the argument presented.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.2a Introduce a topic clearly, previewing what is to follow; organize ideas, concepts, and information into broader categories as appropriate to achieving purpose; include formatting (e.g., headings), graphics (e.g., charts, tables), and multimedia when useful to aiding comprehension.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.2b Develop the topic with relevant, well-chosen facts, definitions, concrete details, quotations, or other information and examples.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.WHST.6-8.2f Provide a concluding statement or section that follows from and supports the information or explanation presented.