Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Winning Words - Fun Word Games for Kids

Parts of this post originally appeared on one of my other blogs, iPadApps4School.com.

Winning Words is the developer of seven free word games for students to play on their iPads. All of the games use the same style as the classic Memory card game. For example, in Antonym Match students have to flip over one card that has a word written on one side. Then they have to flip over another card to try to find the antonym to the first word they saw. If a match isn’t found the cards flip over and the player has to start again.

Antonym Match can be played by up to four people at a time. You can choose a level of difficulty and the number of cards displayed in each game.

There are six similar games offered by Winning Words. Those games are Synonym Match, Homophone Match, Compound Word Match, Singular and Plural Match, Verb Match, and Double Letter Match. All of the Winning Words games can be found here.

Applications for Education
The Winnings Words games are free and do not require registration in order to play them. That makes these apps a nice option for a quick review activities in elementary school classrooms.

#ColorOurCollections - Free Coloring Pages from Museums and Libraries

The New York Academy of Medicine is currently hosting the #ColorOurCollections campaign. The campaign makes coloring pages and books available to download for free. The collection is comprised of drawings from 41 libraries and museums around the world. All of these black and white drawings can be downloaded and printed for free. The drawings contain space for coloring. The drawings are of a historical nature covering topics mostly related to various fields of study in science.

Applications for Education
If you're looking for fun, simple activities to have on hand, take a look through the #ColorOurCollections catalog and download a few coloring sheets.

H/T to Open Culture

To Geography and Beyond With Google Maps

When we hear “Google Maps” we often think that it is only useful for social studies lessons. In addition to social studies Google Maps can be used in physical education, mathematics, science, and language arts lessons. Tomorrow afternoon at 4pm EST I will teach you to use Google Maps in a variety of subject areas. Register here.

This webinar will be held tomorrow, February 8th at 4pm Eastern Time. Save your seat for the webinar. The cost for the webinar is just $20 including the live session, unlimited access to the recording, handouts, and the option for a PD certificate. The webinar will be recorded for those who cannot attend the live session.

Five things you can learn in this webinar:
1. How to create multimedia maps.
2. How to easily map spreadsheet data.
3. How to collaborate on the construction maps.
4. How to tell stories with maps.
5. Alternatives to Google Maps for students who don’t have Google Accounts.

Register here and join me tomorrow.

Richard, why is there a charge for the webinars? 
I explain the answer in this video

How to Include an Image Search Engine in Your Classroom Website

On Sunday afternoon at the CSLA 2017 conference (a great event, by the way) I facilitated a workshop about conducting video projects with students. One of the things that we talked about was making sure that students use copyright-friendly pictures and audio when they are creating their videos. To that end, I demonstrated how to use Photos for Class.

Photos for Class is an image search engine that only locates images that are labeled with a Creative Commons license. When students download images from Photos for Class the images include the attribution that they need to include when they re-use the image. This week Photos for Class published a couple of widgets that you can embed into your blog. In the video embedded below I demonstrate how to add the Photos for Class image search widget to your blog.

Disclosure: Photos for Class is owned by the same company that owns StoryBoard That, an advertiser on this blog. 

Monday, February 6, 2017

7 Places to Find Free Music & Sound Effects for Multimedia Projects

Creating your own music and or sound effects to use in videos or podcasts is one way to avoid violating someone's copyright rights. Another option is to look for music and sound effects that are either in the public domain or have been labeled with a Creative Commons license. The following seven places offer music and sound effects that you and your students can use. As always, check the Creative Commons license and give attribution as requested. 

Royalty Free Music hosts music tracks that can be reused in numerous ways. Royalty Free Music charges the general public for their downloads, but students and teachers can download quite a bit of the music for free. To access the free music tracks students and teachers should visit the education page on Royalty Free Music.

Freeplay Music hosts more than 15,000 music files that your students can download to use in their multimedia projects. The Freeplay Music education license allows students and teachers to use the music for free within the confines of the school. Publishing those projects on YouTube requires a slightly different though still free license. You can find the details of the licenses here.

Musopen's collection of free recordings contains performances of the works of hundreds of composers. The collection can be searched by composer, by performer, by instrument, or by form. You can stream the music from Musopen for free. You can also download five recordings per day for free from Musopen.

The Internet Archive hosts an extensive collection of music and other audio recordings that you can download for free. You should point out to students that they need to look at the usage rights closely when they find things on the Internet Archive. Not everything that is available to download for free is eligible to be reused for free.

The Free Music Archive provides free, high-quality, music in a wide range of genres. The content on Free Music Archive is used under various creative commons licenses. The New York State Music Fund provided initial funding for FMA. FMA seeks to maintain a high-quality resource through the use of selected curators who approve or deny all submissions to the collection. Anyone can download music from FMA for use in podcasts, videos, and other digital presentation formats. The music collections can be searched by genre or by curator.

Sound Bible is a resource for finding and downloading free sound clips, sound effects, and sound bites. All of the sounds on Sound Bible are either public domain or labeled with a Creative Commons license. You can find sounds for use in podcasts, videos, slideshows, or other multimedia creations.

The next time you need common sounds like doorbells ringing, dogs barking, or car horns honking to use in a multimedia project you could try to record those sounds yourself or you could turn to SoundGator to find free recordings that you can download. SoundGator offers free sound recording downloads. There are twenty-three recording categories that you can browse through to find the perfect sound for your project. You do have to register on SoundGator in order to download recordings. After registering you can download recordings directly to your computer to re-use in your projects.