Monday, July 4, 2016

A Free Activity Book from NOAA

Discover Your World is a free activity book produced by NOAA. The book is available as to download as a complete package in one PDF or you can download it in three separate sections. The sections are titled Explore the Earth, Understand the Earth, and Protect the Earth. In total the book has 43 activities appropriate for most K-12 classrooms but the majority of the activities seem to be most appropriate for grades four through eight.

Applications for Education
The activities in Discover Your World are hands-on activities designed to help students learn about topics in meteorology and climatology. A few of the activities that I like include reading nautical charts, building a barometer, and being a weather reporter.

Note, the NOAA Celebrates 200 Years website is no longer being updated but the resources on the site are still available to download for free. 

How Fireworks Work

Fireworks are popping around my little town of Woodstock, Maine this evening. To my dogs the sounds of fireworks are the sounds of the sky falling. The upside of hearing the amateur fireworks displays is that it reminded me of a couple of videos about the science of fireworks.

If you or your children are wondering how the fireworks actually work, take a look at the following videos from National Geographic and Discovery News.



Both of these videos could be the basis of a flipped science lesson. In this post I provided an overview of how to use five services to create flipped video lessons.

How to Enable Automatic Grading in Google Forms

The new automatic grading function in Google Forms seems to be a hit with many readers. I've received a bunch of questions about it in the last week. To answer many of those questions I created the short video that you can see embedded below and or on my YouTube channel.

Saturday, July 2, 2016

The Week in Review - The Most Popular Posts

Good evening from Maine where I'm relaxing after a long, fun, and tiring week at the ISTE 2016 conference. It was energizing to be around so many passionate educators. At the same time there never seems to be enough time to soak up all of the learning opportunities at ISTE.

A happy belated Canada Day to my friends to the north. And a happy Independence Day to my fellow Americans. I am spending the long weekend with friends at their lakeside camp ("camp" in Maine refers to what most people would call a cabin). Wherever you are this weekend, I hope that you get time to relax too.

Here are this week's most popular posts:
1. Google Forms Can Now Automatically Grade Quizzes Without an Add-on
2. Google Cast for Education Gets Your Students on the Same Page
3. The Best Ways to Use Padlet - Examples from Teachers
4. How to Blend Images in Google Slides
5. The Classroom Bookshelf - A Blog of Literature Lesson Ideas
6. 7 Word Summary of ISTE 2016
7. Connect Your Classroom Through SeeSaw Connected Blogs

Bring Me To Your School or Conference
Click here to learn about my professional development services. 

Online  PD Opportunities With Me
Take a look at the online workshops I'm hosting throughout the spring and summer.

Please visit the official advertisers that help keep this blog going.
Practical Ed Tech is the brand through which I offer PD webinars.
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Storyboard That is my go-to tool for creating storyboards and cartoon stories.
Discovery Education & Wilkes University offer online courses for earning Master's degrees in Instructional Media.
PrepFactory offers a great place for students to prepare for SAT and ACT tests.
FrontRow offers adaptive online ELA and Math practice activities.  
Teach n Go is a comprehensive platform for teaching online courses.
The University of Maryland Baltimore County offers graduate programs for teachers.
Boise State University offers a 100% online program in educational technology.
EdTechTeacher is hosting host workshops in six cities in the U.S. in the summer.
Buncee offers a great tool for creating visual stories. 

GeoQuiz - A Talking Map Quiz

There is certainly not a shortage of map quiz on games on the Internet. GeoGuessr and Spacehopper have been two of my favorites for a long time. Now I have another to add to my list of favorites. That addition comes in the form of GeoQuiz.

GeoQuiz is a map game that shows you a placemarker on a map. Once the placemarker appears you have to speak or type the name of the country in which the marker was placed. The object of the game is to identify as many countries as possible within 60 seconds.

In my testing of GeoQuiz I had to be sure to enunciate when I said the name of a country. GeoQuiz did a good job of recognizing what I was trying to say, most of the time. Be sure to use the Chrome web browser and enable microphone access in order to play the game.

Applications for Education
GeoQuiz could be a good game for students to play to review their knowledge of the locations of countries around the world. The option to speak a name rather than type it might give some students the opportunity to prove that they know more than they could actually demonstrate by typing.

H/T to Maps Mania