Friday, January 10, 2014

A Cartoon Explanation and Game About International Trade

The multimedia library on The Economist contains a set of cartoon videos explaining some big concepts in economics. Of the six cartoon the cartoon on international trade has the broadest appeal. The video is appropriate as an introduction to the topic for middle school and high school students.

After watching the video on international trade have your students put their new knowledge to use in Trading Around the World from the International Monetary Fund. The object of the game is to provide students with knowledge of the variables affecting international trade. Students experience the impact of each variable by playing the game as a representative of a country or region that is trying to buy or sell resources. The overall object of the game is to accumulate cash through buying and selling natural resources.

An Excellent Model of Using ArcGIS in Education

Last month I shared a review of an excellent mapping tool called ArcGIS Online. This morning I found a fantastic example of using ArcGIS in education. Seth Dixon has created an ArcGIS map that contains 54 placemarks. Each placemark contains a video related to the marked location.

The neat thing about ArcGIS maps is that the videos play in a timeline at the bottom of the map rather than in the placemarks themselves. You can scroll through the videos and click on one to see the corresponding placemark or click on a placemark to see the corresponding video.

I have not watched all of the video in Seth Dixon's Place-based Geography Videos map. The ones that I did watch and the titles of the others indicate that this map could be a good resource for high school students to explore to learn about contemporary issues around the world.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Groupiful - Manage Task Lists and Projects With a Group

Groupiful is a new entry into the task management / project management tools market. On Groupiful you can create groups of up to ten members with whom you share task lists, project files, and calendars. Of course, Groupiful contains a messaging system that you can use to exchange notes with and send reminders to group members. Groupiful groups can be private or public. As the creator of a group you can give people permission to post messages for the group or restrict them to only viewing the contents of the task lists and project materials.

Applications for Education
Groupiful could be a good service for high school and college students who are working on group projects with multiple groups. Students can be creators and members of multiple groups. If you are a member of multiple Groupiful groups, when you sign-in you will see all the important information from all groups in a color-coded homepage.

H/T to Life Hacker.

Two Neat Resources for Learning About Sharks

Shark Watch SA (operators of Marine Dynamics Shark Tours) has published an interesting infographic about the declining Great White Shark population. The infographic, Great Danger for the Great White Shark, tells the story of a Great White Shark population study done off of the coast of South Africa. The best aspect of the infographic may be the clearly cited sources of information used in the creation of the infographic.

Looking at the infographic reminded me the shark story contained in the World Wildlife Fund's Together app. Through pictures, puzzles, videos, and maps the shark story in the WWF Together app teaches students about the diversity of sharks and the threats to their populations.

Research Conducted by Marine Dynamics a Shark Cage Diving Operator in Gansbaai South Africa.

H/T to Cool Infographics

The History of Rock In an Interactive Infographic

From Gospel to Grunge: 100 Years of Rock is a fun and informative infographic about the history of rock music. The infographic is presented in a vertical timeline format. As you scroll down the timeline you'll see the various stages and styles of rock music as they've evolved over the last 100 years. As you move through the infographic you can click on a style to hear a sample of the music. For example, when you click on "grunge" you hear Nirvana's Smells Like Teen Spirit. The infographic also highlights the connections between styles. Click on a style to see a web of connected styles.

Click image to see the full interactive music graphic(via Concert Hotels).

Applications for Education
From Gospel to Grunge: 100 Years of Rock could be a neat resource to include in a music appreciation course. It's also the type of thing that I might include in a lesson about the history and evolution of American culture.

H/T to Open Culture