(An earlier version highlighted NARA in the title rather than iCivics. Not sure what I was thinking, I corrected it March 27. Sorry iCivics. You’re doing awesome stuff!)
The new normal is fast becoming the normal normal. But it’s always nice to hear what others are doing and using.
And I love Jenifer Hitchcock’s suggestions about structuring our normal normal distance learning instruction. It’s part of a handy toolkit that she and other folks over at iCivics have put together. I’ve summarized Jenifer’s list but you need to head over and check it out all of the details as well as their Toolkit.
Further down, I’ve also posted 11 resources that are perfect for your distance learning normal normal. So if you’re already in a normal normal teaching situation, all of this is super useful.
But if you’re still in some sort of traditional face to face setting, skip Jenifer’s tips and bounce down to the resources – still useful for you because, well . . . they’re awesome sauce for any sort of learning environment.
Here’s a quick list of some of Jenifer’s suggestions: Read more
Google tools. Good.
Google map tools. Awesome.
The move by Google to create a web-based version of Google Earth a few years ago made sense. They needed something that would work on mobile devices and Chromebooks. But as a huge lover of the Desktop Pro version of GE, the problem for me was that the web-based version lacked so many of Pro’s bells and whistles.
I loved the ability to create tours and Google LitTrips, to use Historical Imagery, to combine different layers of data tell amazing stories. Sure. There was Tour Builder and My Maps but my heart still belonged to Google Earth.
But apparently Google listened in on enough of my conversations to do something about my need for tour creation tools in the web-based version of GE. A few weeks ago, they finally added the ability to generate tours with some pretty sweet features.
(If you’re semi-new to the Google Earth world, there are multiple versions. There’s the original Pro version that you install directly onto your laptop or desktop, there’s the more recent web-based version that runs through the Chrome browser – including on Chromebooks, and there are mobile app versions that run on tablets and phones. We’re talking about the web-based Chrome version here. While you can view tours created on the Pro and web versions on mobile versions of GE, you’re still not able to create tours on the mobile versions. Clear as mud?)
These new features help you and students Read more
It shouldn’t come as a surprise to any of you that I am a huge Google Earth nerd. I love geography. I love maps. I love Google.
It’s a simple formula. A + B = C. Maps + Google = Google Earth nerd.
So when Google pushed out an online version of GE this week, all was right with the world. At least until I started digging into it a little bit. Don’t get me wrong. Any time I can play with an online Google tool, it’s a good day.
The new version does have a few cool features. But I’m just a little disappointed that Read more
I spent part of this morning spending time with Donnie Piercey. Donnie teaches grade school kids in Kentucky and is a Google genius. And he’s a social studies guy. And he uses Google mapping tools.
So when I ran across his session here at #metc16 titled Google Geo Tools for the Elementary Classroom, it was a sign. A great session with some great ideas. Get all of his goodies at this sweet Google Doc.
A few highlights: Read more
It’s Monday morning in Philadelphia. Not really sure if that means it’s Day One or Day Two of #ISTE2015. The opening keynote was yesterday afternoon but sessions don’t start until today. Not sure how count their days. And I got here Friday for a quick Saturday am presentation at the ISTE Affiliate pre-con event so my count is off anyway.
I was busy yesterday chatting with new friends like Shauna Pollock and old ones like Levi Valdois so I missed the keynote. Pretty sure they went ahead and started without me. I’m sure ISTE thinks the first day was yesterday but to me, this is D-Day. Everyone is here, checked in, ready to attend sessions, chat up poster presenters, and nerd it up in blogger cafe.
And like every conference I get the chance to attend, I’ll try and give a bit of the flavor of what I hear and who I talk with. Not a ton of social studies related stuff but I am finding some that look really good. I’ve got a coffee and bagel so ready to go. First up? Read more
Most of you already know about my love for all things Google. Their stuff always works. It’s always high-quality. And for the most part, it’s always free.
One of my favorite tools has always been Google Earth. I use it a ton. It gives you and your students a chance to connect people & place and events & place. It provides big picture data and encourages problem solving. And it’s always been free.
Except for Google Earth Pro. Pro is, well . . . more awesomer. More features. More fun stuff like a HD Movie Maker. High resolution images. Extra layers not available on the free version. More measurement tools. So while it is more awesomer, Earth Pro would run you $399 for the privilege.
Google Earth Pro is now free.