Saturday, February 18, 2017

This Creepily Named Site Reminds Us To Check Facebook Privacy Settings

Stalkscan is the creepy name of a website that lets people enter the URL of a Facebook profile and view all of the public information for that profile. The site is a good reminder to check your Facebook privacy settings regularly. You can can always view your own profile as another person by going to the "view as" menu found in the header of your Facebook page. The "view as" option will also show you how your profile looks when it is returned in a search conducted by someone who is not your Facebook friend.

Applications for Education
As I mentioned above, Stalkscan is a good reminder for students and adults to keep tabs on their digital footprints. It's also a good reminder to read those privacy updates whenever Facebook changes their privacy policies.

H/T to Lifehacker.

Presidential Historians Survey Ranks the Presidents of the United States

The Presidential Historians Survey is a ranking of U.S. Presidents based on the responses of dozens of Presidential historians as surveyed by C-SPAN. The survey asks historians to rank the past Presidents of the United States according to ten leadership characteristics. Some of those characteristics are vision/ agenda setting, persuasion, and moral authority. Abraham Lincoln ranked at the top of this year's ranking while James Buchanan was last in the ranking.

Applications for Education
The Presidential Historians Survey could be a good jumping-off point for research into the attributes that people seek in a President. It's also a good starter for conversations about the events that define the terms of some Presidents.

Friday, February 17, 2017

Get a Free Presidential Timeline Poster for Your Classroom

C-SPAN Classroom is currently offering a free timeline poster depicting all of the past Presidents of the United States. The poster shows each President's time in office, a short biography, the era of American history in which each President served, and a couple of major events that happened during each President's time in office. The poster is free for anyone who has a free C-SPAN Classroom account. The first posters will be mailed during the week of March 6th.

Applications for Education
C-SPAN Classroom offers a number of suggestions for using the poster in your classroom. I had a similar poster in my classroom seven or eight years ago. I let my students choose a President from the poster and create a short video biography of their chosen President.

Hexagon Learning Template

Earlier this week I Tweeted Terri Eichholz's blog posts about hexagonal learning. In those posts she outlined how hexagonal learning worked in her classroom. It's notable that Terri also shared the mistakes she made when trying to use visual hexagonal learning lessons with her students. Terri works with elementary school students. Hexagonal learning can also be used at the high school level as Russel Tarr outlines in his blog post about using it in his history classes. Russel offers a hexagonal learning template on his Class Tools website.

The Class Tools Hexagons Generator lets you create an online hexagonal learning activity to share with your students. To use the template just enter a topic then a minimum of five terms related to that topic. For example, I entered the topic of "American Revolution" then entered the terms "Stamp Act," "Sugar Act," "Boston Tea Party," "Intolerable Acts," and "Olive Branch Petition." The generator then created five hexagons that my students can arrange online to show the connections between the topics. Students can also edit the hexagons to add explanations to the connections.

If you're in a classroom that isn't 1:1 you can print the hexagons created by the Class Tools Hexagons Generator.

Applications for Education
As Terri and Russel explain in their respective blog posts, hexagonal learning can be a great way to help students see how multiple topics within a subject are connected to each other. This can be an excellent activity for students to do when they are preparing to write a long research or editorial piece.

Practical Ed Tech BYOD Camp FAQ

We've had three snowstorms in less than a week here in Maine. In other words, it is the perfect time to think about summer. This summer I'm hosting the Practical Ed Tech BYOD Camp in Portland, Maine. In the video below my assistant Isla and I answer one of the most frequently asked questions about the BYOD Camp.

The Practical Ed Tech BYOD Camp on July 27th and 28th will be a hands-on exploration of how to use free technology tools in your classroom. This two day workshop is based on my framework for using technology to help students discover new information, discuss their ideas, and demonstrate their knowledge. Registration is limited to 25 participants to ensure that every participant gets the attention he or she deserves.

Who should come to the Practical Ed Tech BYOD Camp?
K-12 teachers and curriculum directors who want to discover the best tools and strategies for teaching with technology in the new school year. You do not have to have any prior technology skills in order to learn a lot during the Practical Ed Tech Summer BYOD Camp. Just bring your laptop, iPad, or Android tablet and you’re ready to go. If you are a more experienced user of educational technology, there will be plenty of new tools and ideas for you too.

What’s included in registration?
Breakfast, snacks, and lunches are included for both days. Hotel accommodations and dinners are not included in registration. Mention “Practical Ed Tech” or "Byrne Instructional Media" when making reservations at Holiday Inn By the Bay to receive discounted rates.

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