Saturday, June 14, 2014

Educational iPad Apps from the Library of Congress

The U.S. Library of Congress offers a wealth of fantastic online resources for teachers and students. A quick jump into the teachers resource page will lead you to things like these primary source analysis guides that I have used with students in the past. The LOC also offers a couple of good iOS apps that are worth noting.

Library of Congress--Virtual Tour provides images of the Library's historic rooms along with historical information about them. The images are also paired with related links for further investigation. Audio podcasts about items and features in each room can be accessed through the LOC Virtual Tour app.

Aesop's Fables interactive book from the Library of Congress is available to read on the Web, on an iPad, and on an Android device. The book contains more than 140 of Aesop's Fables for children. The level of interactivity varies widely depending upon which story you're reading. Some of the stories have truly interactive animations while other simply have a small moving picture accompanying the fable.

The Week in Review - The Most Popular Posts of the Week

Good evening from the Free Technology for Teachers World Headquarters in Woodstock, Maine. Earlier this week I spent a couple of days working with a great group of teachers, technology integrators, and teacher-librarians in Selah, Washington. We had a great time exploring all kinds of ideas around augmented reality, video creation, and blogging in the classroom. Next week I will be in Dubuque and Bettendorf, Iowa. If you are going to be at either of those conferences, please say hello. And please click here if you would like to have me visit your school or conference.

Here are this week's most popular posts:
1. How to Flip Your Classroom With eduClipper and PixiClip
2. Photo Mapo for Archiving Summer (and other things)
3. Complete These Free Courses to Become a Better Researcher
4. Progressive Phonics - Free eBooks for Teachers, Parents, and Students
5. Three Good Places to Find Historical Images - And an Idea for Using Them to Spark Discussion
6. Legislative Explorer - An Interactive Visual of Legislative Actions
7. Flipagram - Telling Stories Through Pictures

Three seats are left at the Practical Ed Tech Summer Camp. 

Please visit the official advertisers that help keep this blog going.
Practical Ed Tech is the brand through which I offer PD webinars.
IXL offers a huge assortment of mathematics lesson activities.
Typing Club offers free typing lessons for students.
Discovery Education & Wilkes University offer online courses for earning Master's degrees in Instructional Media.
MasteryConnect provides a network for teachers to share and discover Common Core assessments. is a provider of free educational games for K-5.
The University of Maryland Baltimore County offers graduate programs for teachers.
Boise State University offers a 100% online program in educational technology.
EdTechTeacher is offers professional development workshops in Boston and Chicago.
StoryBoard That is a great tool for creating comics and more.

How to Subscribe to Free Technology for Teachers
Subscribe via RSSSubscribe via Email.
Like Free Technology for Teachers on  Facebook.
Find me on Twitter, on Google+, or on Pinterest.

TED Playlists - A Little Organization for Your TED Talks Viewing

TED Talks have provided the spark for a lot of interesting conversations in my current events classes and in my homeroom meetings over the years. Sometimes I would simply show them in the classroom as discussion fodder and other times I would post them on a classroom blog to have students watch and respond with written comments. I found talks either through searching the TED website or by having them appear in the TED Blog feed. Now there is an easier way to find good talks, that is by looking at TED Playlists.

TED Playlists are sets of talks organized around a topic or theme. You can search for playlists and videos by selecting a topic from the playlist homepage then entering a keyword search within a chosen topic. It's a quick and easy way to find interesting talks to share with your students.
If you would like to a see a list of more than 1700 TED Talks, take a look at this spreadsheet that contains speakers' names, talk titles, talk summaries, and links to the talks.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Three Good Places to Find Historical Images - And an Idea for Using Them to Spark Discussion

One of my favorite ways to spark students' interest in a history lesson is to have them look for interesting historical images. I've found that interesting images can prompt good conversations which in turn lead to good questions for my students to research the answers to. One of the ways that I've carried out those activities over the years is by having students look through digital archives of images and then sharing their favorite images on a Padlet wall. Along with the image I ask students to share a question that they have about it. Here are three good places to find historical images.

My go-to source for years has been The Commons on Flickr. The Commons contains more than one million historical images that are in the public domain. Dozens of libraries and museums around the world have contributed to The Commons. When you find a picture on The Commons, look for the download arrow icon in the bottom-right corner of the screen. Click that arrow and you can choose from a variety of image sizes to download.

The Museum of New Zealand recently released more than 30,000 images of art and artifacts to download and re-use for free. The images are a mix of public domain images and images labeled with a Creative Commons license. The museum makes it easy to determine how an image is licensed. To determine the licensing of an image simply click on the download button and the next page clearly shows the license for the image.

Use the Getty Search Gateway to search through more than 85,000 images in the Getty Museum's Open Content Program. The Getty Search Gateway allows you to filter your search according to material type, topic, name, source, and location. Once you find an image, click the image's title to be taken to its landing page where you can learn more about it, get the required attribution information, and learn more about the history of your chosen image.

Haiku Deck Explains the World Cup - And How to Embed Haiku Deck Presentations

Yesterday, I shared Common Craft's explanation of everything you need to know about the game of soccer. Today, the Haiku Deck blog featured a presentation of everything you need to know about the World Cup. The presentation includes a list of the contending countries and explanations of how the tournament is conducted. The slides also feature images of the stadiums used during the tournament. If you're like me and you don't understand how the World Cup works, check out the presentation as embedded below.

Everything You Need to Know About the World Cup - Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that inspires

I've had a few people email me over the last couple of months asking how to embed Haiku Deck presentation. At some point in the last six months Haiku Deck changed where the embed code for presentations is found. In the past it was found on the last slide of a deck, much like on SlideShare. When that option disappeared it seemed like Haiku Decks that you didn't own could not be embedded. The trick to finding the embed code is to hover your cursor over the "+" symbol to the left of the slides then click on the "< >" icon that appears. Clicking on that icon will give you an embed code for any Haiku Deck presentation that has been made public on the web. I made a short screencast of the process and embedded it below.

Popular Posts