Monday, January 4, 2016

Ten Good Video Sources for Science Teachers and Students

On Sunday evening I shared a list of ten good sources of social studies videos. To keep the video source series going I've created a list of sources for educational science videos. Here are ten good sources of science videos for students and teachers.

On his website and YouTube channel Montana's 2011 Teacher of the Year Paul Anderson has uploaded more than 300 quality instructional videos like the ones about biology that are embedded below.



TED-Ed offers dozens of videos on a variety of topics in science. I created a playlist of TED-Ed videos about how the human body works. That playlist is embedded below.


Gooru is a service that aims to provide teachers and students with an extensive collection of videos, interactive displays, documents, diagrams, and quizzes for learning about topics in math and science. As a Gooru member you have access to hundreds of resources according to subject areas such as chemistry, biology, ecology, algebra, calculus, and more. Within each subject area you can look for resources according to media type such as video, interactive display, slides, text, and lesson plans. When you find resources that you want to use, drag them to the resources folder within your account. Gooru also offers you the option to add resources to your folders even if you did not find them within Gooru.

Learners TV has organized hundreds of academic videos. They've also organized more than one hundred science animations. The science animations on Learners TV are organized into three categories; biology, physics, and chemistry.

ScienceFix is the blog and YouTube channel of middle school science teacher Darren Fix. On both the blog and the YouTube channel you will find more than 100 videos demonstrating various science experiments, demonstrations, and middle school science lessons.

Bright Storm's YouTube channel offers video lessons for biology, chemistry, and physics. The videos are nothing more than an instructor lecturing with a whiteboard for a few minutes which could be adequate if a student just needs a refresher on a science topic.

NASA has a few different YouTube channels, but the one that has the most universal utility for teachers and students is NASA eClips. NASA eClips is organized according to grade level with playlists intended for elementary school, middle school, and high school.

Reactions: Everyday Science is a YouTube channel that was formerly known as Bytesize Science. I have featured a few Bytesize Science videos in the past. Reactions: Everyday Science produces short explanatory videos about the science in common elements of our lives. In the past I've featured Reactions videos about the science of snowflakes and the science of grilled cheese.

John and Hank Green's Crash Course channel on YouTube includes courses in chemistry, ecology, and biology. They're good videos, but they do go quickly so your students might have to rewind them a couple of times to catch everything.

The Spangler Effect is a YouTube channel from Steve Spangler Science. Unlike his popular Sick Science videos which are no more than short demonstrations of science experiments students and parents can do at home, The Spangler Effect videos offer longer (15 minutes or so) explanations of science experiments. The Spangler Effect videos explain the science of do-it-yourself experiments and how you can recreate those experiments at home or in your classroom.

A note about Khan Academy: I left Khan Academy off the list because it's the best known source of educational videos. Sal Khan doesn't need my help promoting his stuff.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

10 Good Video Sources for Social Studies Teachers and Students

Last week I shared a list of good sources for mathematics videos. That post was one of the most popular posts of the month despite being published during a school vacation week. Seeing the results of that list has prompted me to share lists for other subject areas. Here is my list of good video sources for social studies teachers and students.

The first source that came to mind when I started to think about this list is Keith Hughes's Hip Hughes History videos. Because of his quality work Keith was recognized as a YouTube EDU Guru last fall. Hip Hughes History is a series of short, upbeat lectures on topics in US History and World History. The videos are produced by Keith Hughes, a high school history teacher in Buffalo, New York. Keith has produced more than 200 videos. His section on US History for Dummies is a must-bookmark.

Tom Richey's videos on topics in U.S. and European history are designed for students preparing for the advanced placement tests on those subjects. Tom's videos have a slightly different, yet equally good presentation for students. I've embedded a couple of his videos below. You can find all of Tom Richey's A.P. U.S. History and A.P. European history videos here. Make sure that you also check out Tom's PowerPoint files that are used in many of his videos.

Dan Izzo has uploaded more than 3,000 videos to his YouTube channel. I've featured a bunch of the videos from this channel in the past. On this channel you will find a lot of short (2-5 minute) US History and World History videos. Most of the history videos on this channel are overviews of eras or major topics in history. The channel does not have much organization and videos on topics outside of history are mixed-in so you will have to use the search function to find gems that you can use.

PBS Video is my favorite place to find high quality documentaries. As a teacher of U.S. History I'm partial to the American Experience videos, but there are many other good programs available through PBS Video. Most of the videos on PBS Video can be embedded into your blog or website.

Crash Course offers excellent videos on U.S. History and World History. The videos are fast-paced ten to twelve minute overviews of major concepts and themes. One of World History videos that I've featured before is The Dark Ages... How Dark Were They, Really?

On Timelines.tv you can find six timelines of important eras in U.S. and European history. Each timeline includes short (3-10 minute) videos about people and events in the era. The timelines also include pictures and short text descriptions. The six timelines currently available are A History of Britain, The American West, Medicine Through Time, American Voices, The Edwardians, and Nazi Germany. More timelines appear to planned for publication in the future.

Gooru is a service that aims to provide teachers and students with an extensive collection of videos, interactive displays, documents, diagrams, and quizzes for learning about topics in math, social studies, and science. As a Gooru member you have access to hundreds of resources according to subject areas such as social studies, chemistry, biology, ecology, algebra, calculus, and more. Within each subject area you can look for resources according to media type such as video, interactive display, slides, text, and lesson plans. When you find resources that you want to use, drag them to the resources folder within your account. Gooru also offers you the option to add resources to your folders even if you did not find them within Gooru.

C.G.P. Grey produces all kinds of interesting and educational videos. Some of the videos are a bit too cheeky for some classrooms, but most of them are acceptable for classroom use. Some of the recent videos on the channel are Vatican City Explained and Can Texas Secede from the Union?

The U.S. National Archives YouTube channel offers a mixed bag of videos that include everything from old propaganda films like this one to lectures from historians to short lessons about items in the National Archives.

The Smithsonian has many channels on YouTube. The one that I want to highlight is the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History YouTube channel. Here you will find playlists about the museum, its exhibits, and short lessons based on the work of the museum.

Two Online PD Opportunities With Me in January

Do you need professional development hours in 2016? If so, take a look at the two online PD opportunities that I am offering in January.

On January 5th I’m starting a new section of Getting Going With GAFE (Google Apps for Education). Three graduate credits are available in that course. More information about that course is available here.

On January 11th I’m starting a new section of Classroom Blog Jumpstart. More information about that online class is available here.

Subscribers to the PracticalEdTech.com newsletter receive a discount on course registration when using the discount code SUBSCRIBER at check-out.

Saturday, January 2, 2016

The Week, Month, and Year In Review

Good morning from Maine where the sun is shining over a crisp winter morning. It finally feels like winter here. I have a special edition of the week-in-review to share before I head out for a few runs on the local ski mountain.

This week I took some time off to visit family and friends and to ski. I hope that all of you who were on school vacation had a restful week too.

In December I had the privilege to speak at events in Massachusetts and in Kansas. This month I'll be going to the FETC and BETT conferences. If you're going to be at either one, please say hello.

2015 was a year of highs and lows for me. I chronicled many of those highs and lows in a post on Worms In the Fridge.

Here are the most popular posts from December, 2015:
1. 10 Good Google Docs, Sheets, and Forms Add-ons for Teachers
2. 5 Great Things You Can Do With Google Sheets
3. A Short Overview of 12 Tools for Creating Flipped Classroom Lessons
4. Click to Spin - A Fun and Free Random Name Picker
5. 15 Good Tools for Quickly Gathering Feedback from Students
6. 11 Apps and Sites for Learning to Code
7. EDPuzzle Now Has a Google Classroom Integration
8. 10 Good YouTube Channels for Math Lessons
9. A Great List of Web Tools That Don't Require Registration
10. 5 Things We Can do to Prepare Students to Work Independently

On January 5th I'm starting a new section of Getting Going With GAFE (Google Apps for Education). Three graduate credits are available in that course. More information about that course is available here.

On January 11th I'm starting a new section of Classroom Blog Jumpstart. More information about that online class is available here.


Would you like to have me speak at your school or conference?
Click here to learn about my professional development services. 

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Practical Ed Tech is the brand through which I offer PD webinars.
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The University of Maryland Baltimore County offers graduate programs for teachers.
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EdTechTeacher is hosting host workshops in six cities in the U.S. in the summer.
SeeSaw is a great iPad app for creating digital portfolios.
Lesley University offers online education programs for teachers. 
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Friday, January 1, 2016

10 Things Students Can Do With Google Keep

As I do every year, I am taking this week to relax, recharge, and ski with friends. While I'm away I will be re-running the most popular posts of the year. This was one of the most popular posts in November, 2015.

At the end of October Google added a drawing option to Google Keep. The drawing tool in Google Keep offers a large variety of line colors and thicknesses. Drawings can be added to existing notes or can be created as stand-alone notes. And like other Google Keep notes, drawn notes can be shared from Keep to Google Docs. Creating drawings is just one of many ways that students can use Google Keep. Here are ten ways that students can use Google Keep on Android devices.

1. Draw notes.
2. Make to-do lists.
3. Type notes.
4. Color-code and sort notes.
5. Create reminders.
6. Share notes with other students.
7. Share task lists.
8. Record voice notes.
9. Take picture notes.
10. Send notes to Google Docs.

By the way, this post was drafted in Google Keep.