Friday, November 30, 2007

Science Behind the News

This Web site provides teachers with information and activities to connect science with current or recent news topics. For example California Burnin': Are We Building in Harm's Way? and Sports 'n Steroids

The Why Files | The Science Behind the News

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Leonardo da Vinci online

This award-winning site from London's University of the Arts is rich in interactive activities to help students learn about science, math, and more using DaVinci's works.

Universal Leonardo: Leonardo da Vinci online

From flights of fancy to making monsters, Leonardo simply had to know how the universe worked. His various attempts to discover the truth reveal much about this remarkable man and provide the inspiration for these fun activities.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Enabling student collaboration for learning

From Georgia State University Teaching and Learning with Technology Center

Enabling student collaboration for learning

By collaborating, students can develop their potential for learning. Specifically, students can learn to approach and solve new problems so that they develop the capability to solve problems that do not exist at the moment of learning. Rather than simply absorbing material, learning rules, and displaying the material and rules on demand, students learn to develop capabilities that they first experience in assisted or collaborative learning situations.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Using the Canon Video Camera

This video will introduce you to the controls and basic functions of the Canon ZR800 Digital Video Camera

Related: Windows Movie Maker video tutorial

Friday, November 23, 2007

Connecting Your Classroom to the World

Global SchoolNet: "Global SchoolNet's mission is to support 21st century learning. We engage teachers and students in meaningful project learning exchanges with people around the world to develop literacy and communication skills, foster teamwork and collaboration, encourage workforce preparedness and create multi-cultural understanding. We prepare youth for full participation as productive and effective citizens in an increasing global economy."

Apple Learning Interchange: Find ideas for classroom activities, connect with peers through searching, messaging, iChat and collaborative publication tools, and submit projects as simple as classroom snapshots or as complex as multi-page abstracts for assessment, enhancement, and peer review.

International Education and Resource Network: "the world's largest non-profit global network that enables teachers and young people to use the Internet and other new technologies to collaborate on projects that both enhance learning and make a difference in the world."

Telecollaborate: "The Internet offers us an immediate way to join together, telecollaborating with educators and students around the world. Here at NickNacks, we can help, whether you want to participate in a telecollaboration or start your own, with information to help you and projects to join."

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Whiteboards Boost Learning

Research conducted in the United Kingdom concludes that interactive whiteboards have a positive impact on primary school students in math, science and English. Children who consistently used interactive whiteboards for extended periods of time progressed more quickly. In 2003-04, the British government funded the Primary Schools Whiteboard Expansion Project, allocating £10 million to 21 local school authorities to support the implementation and continued use of interactive whiteboards in primary schools in England. The evaluation study examined the progress of 7,272 students in 332 classrooms. The researchers found that the length of time pupils have been taught with an interactive whiteboard is the major factor that leads to achievement gains. This appears to be the result of the interactive whiteboard becoming embedded in teachers' instructional practice; when teachers have had sustained experience (around two years at the time of the evaluation) of using an interactive whiteboard, they are able to change their teaching practices to make best use of its features. Analysis combining the data from the 2005 and 2006 cohorts found that math students in grades three-six made additional gains of 2.5 to 5 months' progress. In sixth-grade science, some students made as much as 7.5 months' additional progress. Teachers reported that using interactive whiteboards positively impacted lesson preparation time, student assessment and student learning outcomes. The United Kingdom has the highest classroom adoption of interactive whiteboards. An estimated 100% of primary schools and 98% of secondary schools have at least one interactive whiteboard. Overall adoption in all UK primary and secondary classrooms is estimated to have surpassed 55% as of 2007.

Source: British Educational Communications and Technology Agency

Monday, November 19, 2007

Computing and Classroom Management | 21st Century Connections

Very good piece on nuts-and-bolts of managing a class using laptops ...

One-to-One Computing and Classroom Management | 21st Century Connections
... managing a classroom of students with laptops is mostly about managing the students. This means that you use the same tools for classroom management with laptops as you use for basic classroom management.

Thanksgiving Activities from Education World

A truckload of educational activities related to the Thanksgiving holiday from Education World

Education World: Holidays Center: Thanksgiving

Using the Firefox Browser, Pt 2

Your new laptop comes pre-installed with the Firefox web browser. Firefox is a faster, easier, and safer browser than Internet Explorer 7. Firefox is highly customizable.

I've collected two short YouTube videos from techbites that will introduce you to the basics of Firefox. In this episode, look at the most essential tools for browsing the web: the quick-bar, keyboard shortcuts, and tabs.

How to Use the Firefox Browser, Pt 1

Your new laptop comes pre-installed with the Firefox web browser. Firefox is a faster, easier, and safer browser than Internet Explorer 7. Firefox is highly customizable.

I've collected two short YouTube videos from techbites that will introduce you to the basics of Firefox. In this episode you can learn how to set your Firefox homepage, change the look by picking a new theme, and modify the layout by moving and adding buttons.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Teachers Gone Wild?

Do you have a MySpace or Facebook profile? If so you need to be very discrete about what you post.

If you post too much information about your life online you could become a target for attacks by students, as well as disciplinary action by your employer.

Employees gone wild (online) II: Special Teacher Edition

Friday, November 16, 2007

Death by PowerPoint

From, this slideshow by Alexei Kapterev, shows how not-to-use PowerPoint.

Primary Ideas - Math Resources

Lots of worksheets and other documents for use by math teachers. Most are in MS Word and PowerPoint formats.

Primary Ideas - Numeracy Ideas

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

iPods in the Classroom

Excerpt from the Dallas Morning News ...

iPods in the classroom became trendy several years ago when Duke University began giving them to incoming freshmen.

Now, they're spreading to school districts around the country. Advocates say they help engage students in learning and keep them tech savvy.

The devices have also been popular on college campuses where professors record lectures on iTunes.

"This is tech generation. So, when we think of instructing students, we have to think of different ways of teaching," said Whitt's principal, Alisha Crumley. "To get their attention in class, we have to keep up."

Read full story

Looking for Ideas?

I have a book titled Using Technology with Classroom Instruction that Works which contains a lot of good practical ideas for integrating technology into your classroom. Feel free to borrow it any time.

Monday, November 12, 2007

CDW-G "Out of Box" Training

The training session which we had previously been told would be in Altoona at IU 8 is now in Indiana at IU 28. I have registered us for Friday, November 30. Our group will include Kristie, Denise, Amy, Mitch, myself, and Chad. Do to a conflict, we will need to attend the 8:00 - 11:30 AM session.

Only three schools may participate in each session. I have received confirmation of registration for this session.


Thursday, November 8, 2007

Tips for Using and Caring for Memory Cards

13 Tips for Using and Caring for Memory Cards

From the Digital Photography School, advice on how to get the most out of your digital camera's memory cards.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Camera Media Deals

You may want to buy your own digital media for the still and video cameras so that your work is is stored on media that belongs to you. I shopped a little bit for you to try to find some good deals on SD cards for the still camera and MiniDV cassettes for the video camera.
SD cards
Kingston 1 Gb SD/1GBKR $10 (free shipping)
Kingston 2 Gb SD/2GBKR $14.95 (free shipping)

MiniDV video cassette
Sony MiniDV 60 min digital video cassette DVM60PRL4PCWM $11.87
SD cards
Ultra 1 Gb ULT31833 $12.99
Ultra 2 Gb ULT31923 $14.99

MiniDV video cassette
JVC MiniDV 60 min digital video cassette B275-2014 $5.99
Panasonic MiniDV 80 min digital video cassette B275-2024 $9.99
Sony MiniDV 60 min digital video cassette S167-4084 $6.99

Prices and items numbers current as of 4:50 pm, 11/7/07

CFF Teacher Coursework Release Time

Following is the release time plan for your course work ...

Free One-Stop Educational Resource

HippoCampus is a project of the Monterey Institute for Technology and Education (MITE). The goal of HippoCampus is to provide high-quality, multimedia content on general education subjects to high school and college students free of charge.

HippoCampus was designed as part of Open Education Resources (OER), a worldwide effort to improve access to quality education for everyone. HippoCampus content has been developed by some of the finest colleges and universities in the world and contributed to the National Repository of Online Courses (NROC), another MITE project. NROC makes editorial and engineering investment in the content to prepare it for distribution by HippoCampus. Both HippoCampus and NROC are supported by The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation.

21st Century Connections

21st Century Connections links students, teachers and administrators to the latest resources, creative tools and educational leaders behind digital learning. Provided by Lenovo, Adobe, Intel and Futurekids, this 21st Century Connections web site is hosted by Technology & Learning, NewBay Media.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

See Words As Never Before

Visuwords™ online graphical dictionary and thesaurus

Look up words to find their meanings and associations with other words and concepts.

Visuwords™ uses Princeton University’s WordNet, an opensource database built by University students and language researchers. Combined with a visualization tool and user interface built from a combination of modern web technologies.

TeacherTube - Teach the World

A source for safe online educationally oriented videos, similar to YouTube

Monday, November 5, 2007

Equipment Delivered!!!

This workshop has been moved to IU 28 in Indiana, Nov 30.

Nearly all of our equipment has been delivered including the laptops.
The installation team should be here next Tuesday Monday. After that, we'll start rolling stuff out.

Remember, there's going to be a hardware workshop at IU 8 (Altoona, see the map) soon which you are all required to attend.

View Larger Map

Wiki Workshop

What's a wiki?

Wikis are simple Web pages that let you collaborate with others. A wiki can be an easy way to get your syllabus online and a tool to let your students collaborate online.

Learn how wikis work and how to use them in the classroom at this Atomic Learning site:

PBwiki - Wiki Workshop - Movies

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Tips For Digital Story Telling

Digital Storytelling is the modern expression of the ancient art of storytelling. Digital stories derive their power by weaving images, music, narrative and voice together, thereby giving deep dimension and vivid color to characters, situations, experiences, and insights. Tell your story now digitally.
- Leslie Rule, Digital Storytelling Association
Techlearning > > Tips For Digital Story Telling > November 1, 2007

Excelets: Excel's Excellent Adventure

If you have numerical data of any variety, Microsoft Excel is a great way to plot a graph – be it a Bar Graph, Pie Chart, or Scatter Plot! Excel's next capability is to develop a mathematical model from the data and run simulations.

Techlearning > > Excelets: Excel's Excellent Adventure > November 1, 2007

Friday, November 2, 2007

Census at School Learning Activities

Census at School is an international online project that engages students from grades 4 to 12 in statistical enquiry. The project began in the United Kingdom in 2000 and now includes participation from schools in Australia, Canada, New Zealand and South Africa.

This project combines fun with learning, to the delight of hundreds of thousands of students around the world who have already participated. They discover how to use and interpret data about themselves as part of their classroom learning in math, social sciences or information technology. They also learn about the importance of the national census in providing essential information for planning education, health, transportation and many other services.

Census at School offers students a golden opportunity to be involved in the collection and analysis of their own data and to experience what a census is like.

Census at School - Canada

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Ed Secretary Outlines PA's Efforts to Address Dropout Situation

“We owe it to our children and our communities to do all we can to ensure every child completes high school,” Zahorchak said. “To that end, Pennsylvania has put together an aggressive, multi-pronged approach to help every student succeed in school and beyond.”
Zahorchak said Pennsylvania’s comprehensive approach to curbing dropouts has three main components: prevention, intervention and re-engagement.

Prevention efforts are aimed at helping at-risk children get off to a solid start through programs such as Pennsylvania Pre-K Counts, state funding for Head Start and block grant funding for full-day kindergarten. The department also works closely with the Department of Public Welfare to administer early intervention programs to aid children with particular educational or developmental needs.

Intervention and re-engagement programs include tutoring, alternative education programs and a host of efforts to make high school more challenging and engaging for students.

These efforts include:
Classrooms for the Future, a three-year investment to provide laptop computers, high-speed Internet access and state-of-the-art software to high school classrooms across the state.
• A Dual Enrollment program that allows high school students to take college-level, credit-bearing courses at local community colleges and four-year colleges and universities while earning credit towards high school graduation.
• Project 720, named for the number of days a Pennsylvania student spends in school from 9th through 12th grades. Project 720 ensures all high school students have access to college prep courses in core subjects, provides additional Advanced Placement courses and offers smaller learning environments for better student-teacher interaction.

All of these efforts are aimed at creating a more rigorous and relevant curriculum that keeps students engaged.

More ...
Ed Secretary Outlines PA's Efforts to Address Dropout Situation

Blogs for Teachers and Administrators

Techlearning > > Blogs for Teachers and Administrators > November 1, 2007
"By now most of us have heard of Blogs — user-generated, moderated websites whose readers can publicly respond to news and commentaries on specific topics. Once posted, others may reply to your perspectives, and so on. This dynamic, two-way communication among blog participants continues unrestrained, assuming good taste. These dialogues often yield stimulating and informative discussions."

FREE Resources: Science

More than 30 Federal agencies formed a working group in 1997 to make hundreds of federally supported teaching and learning resources easier to find. The result of that work is the FREE web site. FREE stands for Federal Resources for Educational Excellence.
Techlearning > > FREE Resources: Science > November 1, 2007
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