Wednesday, June 01, 2011

International Space Station

The Space Shuttle Endeavour left the International Space Station for the final time over the weekend. Here is a cool way to "see what they see". The International Space Station Astro Viewer shows the location of the Space Station relative to the earth.

You will find two maps featured on the Astro Viewer. One displays the current position of the Space Station and its track relative over the Earth. The other displays the current view of the Earth as astronauts would see it from the Space Station.

Click the Observation tab, enter a location, and you find a list of the next sighting opportunities for that location. The green bars on the chart indicate the brightness of the ISS on its pass.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Food Culture

I don't believe that I have ever had the opportunity to write about or provide something interesting to the folks in the "Foods rooms" - So here you go!!

Do you have trouble keeping all the various food world personalities and organizations straight? Check out the handy subway/food culture map created by the Hartman Group.
To be honest, I am not entirely sure what to make of this, but I love the organization of the map and how all of the chefs and organizations intersect (AND I am not sure why Rachel Ray didn't make the list!) At any rate, the map plots relationships between people, places and things in our greater food culture.

Enjoy Foodies!!!!!!!!!!!

Sum, Sum, Summertime Reading

As we approach the end of another school year, I am reminded that I haven't written anything "non-techie" in quite some time. In preparation for summer and summer reading, here without any judgement are some options for your summertime pleasure.

The LA Times Summer Reading list-Catagorized

Amazon's summer reading

On a separate note, "the Queen" will continue. I have an "insider" who has graciously agreeded to pass my posts along. I have one more post for this school year and then it is on to the next chapter.

Monday, May 16, 2011

A JUKEBOX for the ages

One of my tech blogger friends shared this information last week- I had trouble with it's functionality initially-but now find it very cool. If you are an audiophile in any way you will be excited by the National Jukebox.

The Library of Congress has created the National Jukebox, which makes historical sound recordings available to the public free of charge. The Jukebox includes recordings from the extraordinary collections of the Library of Congress Packard Campus for Audio Visual Conservation and other contributing libraries and archives.

It is an archive of more than 10,000 recordings made by the Victor Talking Machine Company between 1901 and 1925. These are recordings that were made using an acoustical recording process that captured sounds on wax cylinders. The recordings in the archive can be searched and listened to on your computer. You can search the archives by recording date, recording type, language, and target audience. The National Jukebox has also arranged playlists that you can listen to in a continuous stream.
This could be a great resource for teachers of history, music, and music history. You might have students choose recordings that they like, research the performers, and research the cultural and or political context in which a recording was made, or trace the evolution of a particular style of music.

Thanks to Richard Byrne for the heads up!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

GOOGLE Science Fair

If you are interested in science in any way, shape or form, take a look at the GOOGLE SCIENCE FAIR. The semi-finalists in the inaugural fair have been posted. There are 60 projects that were selected from a pool of over 7500 entries from more than 90 countries around the world. You can vote once in each of the three age-group categories until May 20 at 11:59 PM EST. The People’s Choice winner will be announced on May 23, along with 5 finalists in each age category.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Fake Facebook

This is one of those: "If you can't beat 'em---- Join 'em" ideas!

My Fake Wall is a simple and free web service for creating a fake Facebook wall. To create a Fake Wall you do need to register for an account-Once you create an account you can create fake walls and post them online.
You start with an empty wall- then, by adding a few images, and some posts you can give the wall a more authentic look
Click here to see the beginning of the Fake Wall I created for Harry Potter.
To get other ideas check out other walls that have been created-on the home page as examples-Cinderella, John Lennon, etc

Applications for Education
Creating a fake Facebook page using My Fake Wall could be a fun way for students to publish information about historical figures-living and dead. Students could also use My Fake Wall to create fake Facebook pages about characters in the novels they read.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

March Madness

With March Madness is just a day away, I'd like to pass along a couple of seasonally appropriate sport science videos that you might be able to incorporate into a science or math lesson.

ESPN's Sport Science analyzes two prominent features of basketball: Three Point Shooting and Distraction.
Three Point Shooting uses Ray Allen as an example of phenomenal three point shooting skills and the development of the perfect shot.
Distraction illustrates whether or not all of those waving, screaming fans behind a basketball hoop actually impacts the player's free throw success.

To solve the YouTube issue- both videos available here

Still no lesson on the "Science of Picking the Winner!" :)

Friday, March 11, 2011

Disaster Simulation -STOP THE DISASTERS

This morning's earthquake and subsequent tsunami in Japan provides an opportunity to incorporate current world news into a science lesson. Here is a fun resource for teaching about earthquakes and tsunamis( and other potential disasters)
Stop Disasters is a game designed for students to learn about natural disasters, disaster prevention, and city design. The game is sponsored and created by ISDR the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction. This group brings many organizations, universities, institutions together for a common objective: reducing the number of dead and injured by disasters triggered by natural hazards. They say of their game:" The on-line game aims at teaching children how to build safer villages and cities against disasters. Children will learn how the location and the construction materials of houses can make a difference when disasters strike and how early warning systems, evacuation plans and education can save lives. Children are the future architects, mayors, doctors, and parents of the world of tomorrow, if they know what to do to reduce the impact of disasters, they will create a safer world."

There are five game scenarios that students can play: tsunamis, hurricanes, floods, earthquakes, and wildfires. The scenarios are set in geographically accurate contexts of Europe, Asia, Australia, and the Caribbean. The Information tab provides a wealth of information and teacher resources on the 5 disasters. The game overview gives students their goals: building and housing, a budget and limits of acceptable destruction as well as the time allotted.

The game would be really nice on a SMARTboard as a whole class project. It's interactivity allows the students to create, warn and save their "population". I suggest that you play it first to see all of the options available. Enjoy!