I just discovered this website called http://myteachermyhero.com/. It is interesting to see and hear how teachers inspired leaders from around the world. Also, for entering a candidate or video you can earn a $25 giving card throughout November. As well, the website includes letters to new teachers and celebrity interviews about their mentors.
I highly recommend google earth. Google earth is a great site to view any where in the world. It is a free download. Students are able to see satellite images of mostly anywhere. There are also features that let you see into space as well as the ocean floors. I really enjoy using this site.
I wanted to share a free version of software similar to Geometer’s Sketchpad. The software is called Geogebra and can be found at www.geogebra.org. It is a great tool for Geometry and other Algebra applications. You can download the software to your computer and attempt to become an expert with the software. An extensive handbook that explains the possibilities can be found on the website as well. However, there are several java applets that were creating using the software by educators around the world. The applets can be found if you click the wiki link on the bottom left hand corner of the main page. Not all of them are great, but there are several that can help demonstrate mathematical concepts visually in a way that you just cannot do using a paper and a pencil. You can use a projector to project the applets or have the students explore the applet using their own computer. I use the software to demonstrate slope and its relation to parallel lines, the Pythagorean Theorem and its proofs, the sum of the angle measures of triangles, and many more. It can be an effective and quick way to help reinforce mathematical concepts.
One of my new favorite sites is called SecretBuilders.com. Secretbuilders allows students to experience an online world that is moderated by human beings. The students get to create their own avatar, and have their own home in the world to take care of and decorate.
On the educational side, the students get to interact with famous historical people all around the world. They also get to go on quests that are based on famous novels. In the quests, they have to solve problems, and interact with characters from the stories. The students also gain "shills," which is the monetary system of the world, for completing the quests.
Overall, this is a great way to expose students to virtual worlds. The developers have taken the education world into account when developing their site, and continue to make it easier for teachers to use with their students.
As I am new to the technology and teaching world, my best tip is to sign up for Free Technology for Teachers. If you go to http://freetech4teachers.com, you can subscribe to the site and get updates daily! The coolest (and most useful) part of the whole thing? There is an Applications for Education at the bottom of most (if not all) of the tips. This is a great way to be exposed to myriad technologies. Even if you don't use all of them, you're bound to find something fabulous at least once a week - and isn't that enough?!? Happy hunting!
In my classroom, my kids like to operate at turtle-speed as I like to say. It takes them so long to transition. To help this, I pull up www.online-stopwatch.com on my Promethean Board and pick a timer. They love this, it gets them moving, and it works. I especially like the time bomb:)
Have you ever found a video on youtube that you feel is SO PERFECT to show in class, but your school blocks youtube.com for students and teachers? (If you don't have this problem, I ENVY YOU!) I constantly find fantastic educational video clips that match my content perfectly but I'm unable to stream them because of the internet blocks at our school.
Wordle.net is a fun website that has some great educational applications. Wordle creates "word clouds" based on text you enter on the site. It uses a variety of fonts, colors, and sizes to create a word picture. Most wordles are used for fun, but I found several uses for it in the classroom.
To encourage my students to use better vocabulary in their writing, we came up with lists of interesting words for some of the more commonly used words such as "said" and "walked." I entered these lists into Wordle and printed copies for students to keep in their writing folders. I also blew each list up into a poster so that it was always visible.
I also used Wordle to make vocabulary lists throughout the year. Students were more interested in the words because it looked different than normal. Even though I was introduced to Wordle as a fun, non-educational website, I was able to find several classroom uses.
In the class CEP 810 that I am taking right now, we have been talking about Excel 2007 this week. I ran across some of the advantages of using Excel 2007 rather than Excel 2003. Here are the advantages:
1.The file size will be smaller.
2.If you are dealing with a large data set, Excel 2007 can handle much more than Excel 2003.( maximum 65,000 rows and columns)
3.If a friend sends you an excel 2007 file, you need to go Micrsoft website to download a special program to allow you to open this new file in your old version of Excel.
4.Excel 2007 files has an extension of xlsx while Excel 2003 files has an extension of xls.
As a social studies teacher I am constantly looking for ways to supplement the oftentimes mind-numbing textbooks that many of us must work with. National Geographic has digitally archived every page of every single National Geographic magazine over the last 118 years. This includes all stories, photographs, advertisements, and fold-out inserts available in a six DVD-ROM set or on a portable hard-drive. All of the resources are searchable and it also comes with a trivia game and some other interesting resources.
Thanks for sharing. I have found it hard to make social studies interesting for some students also, especially ones that are more interested in math and science. Often if I can put some type of game into their lesson they are more engaged and stay on task. I have problems if they become bored and so it's very difficult to have them just read material, they need some type of activity. Thanks!!!
I wanted to share EtherPad with the group. This resource allows students to work on text together in real-time. An alternative would be Google Docs, but EtherPad appears, literally, as you type. Super cool!