Natural History – The beautiful, the dangerous, the endangered. Up close.
Welcome to the Natural History exhibit from Google’s Arts & Culture project. Here you will gain access to a wealth of information presented in multiple, interactive ways. The various exhibits that you can tour virtually come from museums all over the world (54 at my last count) including the Seodaemun Museum in Seoul, South Korea, the State Darwin Museum in Moscow, Russia, and the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C., USA.
Some exhibits work like Google Street View, allowing you to move through and around the exhibits. Others take advantage of 360° technology to take you on a virtual reality video tour, such as the Jurassic giant Giraffatitan in Berlin, Germany or the prehistoric sea dragon Rhomaleosaurus in London, England.
And there is still more to be discovered! Take an interactive tour on a Brief History of Discovery, or read about animals that exist on our planet right now that are considered to have super powers! Then there is the library of over 260 curated YouTube videos on Natural History. These videos play within the Natural History website and are free of ads and suggested videos.
For more information check out this entry from the Google Keyword Blog, then let your imagination and curiosity run wild!
Provided thanks to the non-profit group Internet Archive, the Television Archive contains over 909,000 video clips from news agencies in the United States and Great Britain. Search the database based on keyword and/or filter your results by number of views, title, date archived, or creator. Use the topic cloud down the right-side of the page to look up video clips from specific news agencies such as the BBC News, Mad Money, Frontline, Teen Kids News and more.
Once you make a selection, a film strip-like interface will load breaking down the video clip into 1-minute segments. Each segment will start out playing in a smaller window but can be expanded to play full screen. Many of the video clips also support closed captioning. Video segments can be shared via social media or embedded onto your website.
From part of the Google News app, the newspaper archives contains digital versions of various newspaper editions from around the world from various points in time. Search the archive by keyword or alphabetically, or if you know the specific newspaper by name use the ‘Find’ command (Ctrl+F or Cmd+F) to quickly locate the newspaper in question. Each newspaper listing shows the number of issues contained within and the time span covered (note that there may be gaps within the timelines).
Clicking on a newspaper will take you to a new window with a horizontal timeline organized by year. You can adjust the display settings so that the timeline is organized by day, week, month, year, or decade. At the top of each column you will see the number of available issues. Clicking on an issue will bring up a page-by-page view with options to scroll, fit to height, and view fullscreen. Use the ‘Link to Article’ tool to generate a link to a specific article within a specific newspaper issue.
- Compare and contrast news headlines from different newspapers from different places around the world.
- Compare writing styles from different time periods.
Ducksters – Safe research portal for students
Ducksters is a safe, educational research site designed with students in mind. The site is pretty basic without a lot of flash and fanfare so students can focus more on the content they are consuming. There are no ads on the site.
To get started:
- Choose from one of the five content category buttons at the top of the site.
- Choose a more specific topic from the available links in the center square of the site.
- Use the Search box in the top-right corner if you have a specific topic in mind. Note that while the search results may look like a standard Google Search they are in fact a custom search that shows results only from Ducksters.com
How big really? – Compare & Contrast with Google Maps
From BBC Dimensions, this site provides a library of overlays that users can then place over any location around the world to compare and contrast. HBR currently has nine different categories of overlays to choose from including space, ancient worlds, and environmental disasters. Once you have chosen an overlay, specify where you would like the overlay to be placed by entering the name of a town, city, or even your own zip code!
Some questions to get the ideas flowing:
- What would it be like if the moon was sitting in your back yard?
- What would the extent of the damage be if the Gulf Oil Spill happened at your favorite swimming spot?
- What would school be like if the Roman Colosseum had been built where the athletic field is now?
Thanks to Freetech4teachers for tweeting out this great resource.
Book Drum – All the knowledge behind your favorite books
The website Book Drum is a digital library containing a wide variety of book titles that can be searched by keyword, title, or genre. Where the site really shines is in the additional search tools and information provided. For example, search for book titles by geographical location using a Google Earth interface. All book titles provide a traditional text-based summary, but more and more contributors are adding multimedia components to the entries including photos, videos, and maps that can be both digital and scanned in paper. Many entries include a glossary section defining important words and phrases used in the book, as well as an about-the-author tab as well. Finally, if you’re favorite book isn’t listed, send a request to the site to have a book profile created. You can even volunteer to be a contributor and provide the profile content yourself!
- Students can use the bonus multimedia content to help them select the next book to read.
- Students can use the site while they are reading the book to help them with vocabulary, visualizations, and understanding the point of view from the book’s author.
Thanks to TeachersFirst for sharing this resource.
Historic Places – Maps with all historic places in the United States and Canada
Historic Places, using the power of Google Maps, has created an interactive map with points labeling over 100,000 historical places across North America. Green dots on the map represent places within Canada’s borders; red dots within the U.S. Clicking on a dot reveals the name of the historic place, its address, the state, province, or territory it is located in, and a link to more information on the place. Some sites provide more information than others, with some also providing links to other related websites when possible. Users can zoom in and out of the map, and type keywords into the search bar to look for sites in and around specific locations.
- This site could be a great resource for students conducting research on historical topics within the U.S. and Canada. Use the site to collect basic geographical information and find links to primary source websites to help jump-start their research.
Thanks goes to FreeTech4Teachers.com for sharing this find.