Tuesday, March 29, 2022

A Huge Collection of Resources for Fun Phys Ed Activities

OPEN Phys Ed is an organization that hosts tons of great resources for physical education teachers. Additionally, OPEN organizes initiatives to encourage students to participate in physical education activities. One of those initiatives is National Field Day

OPEN National Field Day is an initiative that runs through May and June. It has a social media element that you can participate in to win prizes. If you don't want to participate in the social media component, you can still use the dozens of resources that are associated with OPEN National Field Day. 

Applications for Education
On the OPEN National Field Day site you'll find PDFs, Word docs, Google Docs, and videos that provide instructions for dozens of activities that your students can do as part of your own field day or as part of a regular physical education class. There are individual and team activities included in the catalog of activities. 

What I appreciate about the activities on the OPEN National Field Day site is that, for the most part, the activities are not what I would call "traditional" sports activities. Take a look at the Paper Plane Cornhole game or the the Tennis Shoe Tower game for examples of some of the nontraditional games you'll find for OPEN National Field Day. 

Make a Word Game With Google Sheets - A Fun Way to Learn About Formulas

Google's Applied Digital Skills website is a good place to find lesson plans and activities that you can use to help students learn how to use many features of Google Workspace tools. To capitalize on the recent trend of word games like Wordle, Google recently published a new Applied Digital Skills lesson called Make a Word Game

Make a Word Game is a lesson in which students collaborate in Google Sheets to develop word game that utilizes functions and formulas to randomly generate letters that are used in a word game. Furthermore, students learn how to use functions and formulas to generate scoring for their games. Students don't need to have prior experience using spreadsheets in order to complete this lesson. However, a little prior experience will definitely help avoid some frustration. 

Applications for Education
Google provides some extension activities that students can complete to further develop their spreadsheet skills. Before doing those extension activities I would have students repeat the process of the lesson and modify their input to try to create a thematic version of the word game.

If you're unfamiliar with Google's Applied Digital Skills lessons, here's a short video in which I demonstrate how to access the lessons and distribute them via Google Classroom.

Monday, March 28, 2022

Spaghetti Trees and the History of April Fools' Day

This Friday is April Fools' Day. It's a day that I've always enjoyed a little bit at home and at school. I've always enjoyed the various pranks and jokes that my students tried over the years. Where did the tradition of April Fools' Day pranks begin? If you've ever wondered about that or you want to be ready to answer that question from your students, here are a few short video explanations. 

Mystery Doug is a talking dog who answers questions from kids, he offers a short explanation In Why Do We Celebrate April Fool's Day?

Learn About April Fool's is a short explanation from WatchMoJo that was published ten years ago and is still good.

Perhaps the greatest April Fools' prank of all is the classic Spaghetti Tree hoax broadcasted by the BBC back in 1957. Here's a little interview with one of the producers of that hoax.

ICYMI - How to Create & Sell Your Own Digital Products

Last week I hosted a live webinar titled How to Create & Sell Your Own Digital Products. Since then a bunch of people have reached out to me to say that they wanted to attend, but couldn't because of the timing. Therefore, I've now made the recording available on-demand right here.

Bonus Live Q&A

People who attended last week's live session and those who purchase the recording by before 12pm ET on March 30th, can attend a live Q&A session with me on March 30th at 4pm ET. During the Q&A I'll answer any questions that you have related to the webinar. 

Purchase the recording and handouts here.

More Easy Ways to Save Paper & Ink When Printing

Last week I published a blog post titled Stop Printing the Internet in which I shared some ways to limit the amount of ink and paper you use when printing and also encourage others to do the same. There are even more easy ways to limit the amount of paper and ink you use when printing articles from the web. 

In this short video I demonstrate the built-in features of Firefox and Microsoft Edge that can help you limit how much paper and ink is needed when printing from the web. The video begins with a demonstration of a Chrome extension called Mercury Reader that is also helpful in streamlining your printing of web pages. 

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