Muddling through the blogosphere

February 21, 2010
by blogwalker

Favorite Links for the Week

For the Week of Feb 14th:

  • Who Pooped? – Found this beautifully done K-adult site from the Minnesota Zoo on Larry Ferlazzo’s site (Note to self: budget time into my day to start visiting all of Larry’s Best of links.) And, yes, the site is very accessible to English Language Learners.
  • Word It Like Warren – On the long return flight from Educon (Philadelphia to California), I managed to board the plane without any reading material of my own.  So I was delighted to find some entertaining articles in Southwest’s magazine, including one on tips for writing like Warren Buffet. (Note: to self: Follow up on all the links that came up when I Googled author Jay Heinrichs.)
  • Vocabulary Web 2.0: 15 Tools, Tips, and Resources – Another great post and resource from Shelly Terrell.
  • Inteview with Adora Svitak – After connecting Adora with a group of 5th graders in my district  during last year’s Megaconference Jr – and watching their faces as Adora effortlessly walked through the steps of composing an impromptu piece of writing, I guess I’m not surprised to learn that this brilliant 12 year old is now the youngest TED speaker ever.

April 6, 2009
by blogwalker

Web 2.0 Tools for Learning about Earthquakes

A post from Larry Ferlazzo on The Best Sites to Learn about the Earthquake in Italy got me thinking about resources to provide students with background on earthquakes in general – and a handout CSUSM Professor Kathy Hayden recently gave me (during the Robert Marzano session at CUE):

To the above resources, I’d like to add a tip and link for promoting active listening to science videos (or any video that has students sitting for more than five minutes): Today’s Meeting – a tool that can be used for  incorporating interactive backchanneling into movie watching. (What is backchanneling, you ask?) I discovered Today’s Meeting via a Tweet from Jackie Gerstein, which led to a  post by Chris Webb explaining innovative use of  the tool by middle school history teacher Pat Gerding.

Once again, I stand back in awe of the power of Web 2.0 and its ability to build PLNs not possible only a few years back.

November 1, 2008
by blogwalker

Math and Science Resources for a Web 2.0 World

If you are a fan of “open source, collaborative, and web-based compilation” models, then you’re going to like what CK-12 is putting online. This non-profit organization is dedicated to the idea that every K-12 student in the United States and worldwide deserves “access to the highest quality and lowest cost textbooks and course materials.”

A main goal of the CK-12 organization is to offer excellent and freely accessible textbooks to supplement (replace?) expensive textbooks, which often are filled with “eye candy” to the point of being visually distracting to students. With the CK12’s FlexBooks, teachers can customize content and chapters to meet individual needs of their students.

In a nutshell CK-12 is a Wikipedia approach to textbooks, drawing on reviewers and experts in specific math and science fields, who understand the value of putting teachers in charge of enhancing, changing, and customizing a “flexible output.”

The site has been up for about a year and already offers an impressive amount of content. I just took a side trip into one of the geometry texts and explored an informative chapter on The Geometry of Art and am planning on spending this rainy afternoon wondering through more of the texts.

I am impressed and heartened by CK-12’s commitment that the “content generated by CK-12 and the CK-12 community will serve both as source material for a student’s learning and provide an adaptive environment that scaffolds the learner’s journey as he or she masters a standards-based body of knowledge, while allowing for passion-based learning.”

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