Site of the Week [Week 16]

16 12 2011

16.1 Interactive Map Maker- National Geographic Education

Here is another site for those who like or use maps in their teaching. This site is currently in Beta but has some interesting features. Build your interactive maps in layers using data related to climate, population, economics and more. What relationships can your kids discover between the economics of an area and the human footprint? What regions have the greatest population density? What relationship can be found between the major tectonic plates and the location of earthquakes? Is there also a relationship to surface elevation and these plates? There are many questions that can be explored with these easy to use maps.

16.2 National Geographic Education- Multimedia

Today’s site is also from the new education site by National Geographic and features a collection of multimedia. This appears to be a rich collection of video and images from the National Geographic collection. You are sure to find material here for your classes. Use these videos to augment your class discussions or to provide context for a future lesson and discussion. Warning though, you can get lost in all of this great content. Plan to bookmark this site and visit often for small doses of visual spender and wonder.

16.3 Interactive Math Websites for Interactive Whiteboards

This is a nice collection of interactive math tools and sites with additional collections of tools to use with your Smartboard and other interactive devices. From the wonderful National Library of Virtual Manipulatives to games for practice, this collection should have something for almost every level of math student. Use these sites in class with your board or assign them to be explored independently by your students to provide context for an upcoming lesson. This is a rich site and needs to be visited over time. Some of the material will require that you have the Smart Notebook installed while others are stand-alone interactive sites that could be freely used by students and teachers without the need for special software. What gems can you find in this collection?

16.4 Fostering a Culture of Inquiry posted on Edutopia

Today’s site comes from a posting in Edutopia that showcases the inquiry-based learning process as realized at the Calgary Science School in Alberta Canada. First a little about Edutopia. Edutopia is a site that highlights the work of the George Lucas Educational Foundation and is focused on innovation in education. This site is a rich resource for all who are involved in education today. This would make a great site to explore over vacation to see what others are doing as they reinvent education through innovative approaches to teaching and learning.

Fostering a Culture of Inquiry
The site I wish to highlight today is a post titled Fostering a Culture of Inquiry. This story provides a look at the work being done at the Calgary Science School in Alberta Canada as they implement inquiry-based approaches to learning across all areas of their curriculum. The story also provides a glimpse of their professional development model which includes Action Research and Lesson Study. By following the links in the article you may find your way to other resources including a wonderful 26 page document that walks you through the inquiry based learning approach with information that would be very helpful to those wishing to implement a similar approach in their practice. I have attached a pdf of the document which would also make a quick read and great reflective material for the holidays.

Implementing Inquiry Document- Link to PDF

16.5 Google Zeitgeist 2011

Inquiring minds want to know… That is the gist of the Google Zeitgeist, an annual report on what the world was searching for through Google. This year’s report is full of info graphics and ways to look at the data by region as well as global trends. This year’s to 10 list of global searches include

10 iPad2

9 Steve Jobs

8 東京 電力

7 Adele

6 iPhone 5

5 Battlefield 3

4 Casey Anthony

3 Ryan Dunn

2. Google+

And the most searched for term on a global scale for 2011 is….

1. Rebecca Black

Now, have some fun and dig into the global Zeitgeist by looking at the details behind these and other searches. What can you learn about human-interest stories on a global scale? What are the hot topics in the United States and how do those compare with popular searches of other regions of the world? How do these trends relate to the global climate and what was going on in the world? What do people really want to know? This list, the Google Zeitgeist, has so many possibilities in social studies, sociology, psychology, government and more. What can you do with this tally of digital traces left by billions of individual searches from 2011?

 A Zeitgeist Retrospective

For those who want to see how the Zeitgeist has changed over the past 11 years, this site contains links to all of the lists from 2001 to 2011. What do you remember about these years?




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