Have you ever wanted to know how leaves change their color? How about the science behind throwing a football? Or, how tires on a car are related to the lettuce in your salad? Enter Science Underground, a podcast series hosted by TED speaker and scientist Ainissa Ramirez. In the span of two minutes, Ramirez will explain science concepts in common terms so that anyone can understand.
New episodes are released each week and are accompanied with a written summary, list of references, and links to additional content. Search the archive for past episodes and use their tag list to find episodes based on specific topics such as Math, Chemistry, STEAM, and more. Scroll down to the bottom of any page to subscribe to the podcast via email, or sign-up using iTunes, Stitcher, or SoundCloud.
- Assign episodes for homework and have students reflect the next day in class or online using a discussion forum such as Padlet or blog like Google’s Blogger or WordPress.
The Literacy Shed – Where storytelling and technology meet
The Literacy Shed is a collection of visual resources gathered over a ten year period by a fellow educator and primary school teacher. The goal of the site is to use digital media resources to help facilitate discussions about plot, character development, scene construction, voice, etc. Each ‘shed’ comes with a list of suggested discussion topics, then a list of writing prompts and possible ways students can explore or expand upon the theme. There are currently over 30 sheds to choose from with themes such as The Ghostly Shed, The Inventors Shed, The Authors Shed, and many more.
- One of may fondest memories of writing class was when my teacher did a whole unit on writing the conclusion to unique and sometimes weird scenarios. With this site students who are struggling with writer’s block can get a little extra push to jump-start their imaginations.
- Encourage students to look beyond the traditional paper and pencil to continue the stories, utilizing mediums such as a podcast, iMovie, eBook, and more.
iNudge – Everyone can create music
iNudge is an interactive web tool that combines digital sounds and instruments with a 16×16 grid to allow users to create custom sounds and music. Use the colored squares to the right of the grid to select from up to eight different sound libraries such as Avatar, Harp, and Saturn. Use the final square tool to access the Drums library with 16 different variations to choose from. Click the ‘MORE’ button beneath the grid to access volume and tempo controls, as well as add additional stanzas. When finished, use the ‘get+share’ button in the top-right corner of the grid window to get a link that can be emailed and shared with others.
- This can be a handy tool for getting students to create original soundtracks for movie and/or podcast projects. You may need to use some creative problem-solving to transfer the music, but this could also be a great challenge for students to take on.
- The site can take some time to load, especially if you are working in a lab environment. I would recommend having students browse to the iNudge website early, then open a new tab/window to engage in another activity while you wait.
This site contains a wide variety of tools and resources on topics ranging from budgets to financial wellness to how loans and debt work. For educators, click on Lesson Plans under the Resources menu to access 55 different lesson plans and activities, almost all of which come with objectives, assessments, and suggestions for learning extensions. Check out the calculators area for a list of 35 different financial calculators on a variety of topics that high school students may find valuable. For elementary students, check out the Money Bunny section for stories, podcasts, and printable worksheets on earning, saving, and spending money. There’s even a section with videos in which students give financial advice to adults.
- Financial literacy is an ever more important topic to integrate into our classrooms as we prepare students for the real world. Use the lesson plans from this site as starting points and then customize them to fit your content area and curriculum.
LogoType Maker – Create & customize your own logo images
LogoType Maker is a free, Flash-based web tool with an impressive archive of fonts, graphics, and templates for making logos and rich titles. Simply type in the text for your logo, then click the Generate LOGO button. If you don’t see one you like, click the Refresh button in the top-right corner of the page to generate a new list. When you find a logo close to your liking, click on the blue double gears icon to enter the editor tool and tweak the logo until you have exactly what you’re looking for.
- This is a great tool for students when creating digital content for a project. One of these logos could be easily inserted into a presentation, enhanced podcast, iMovie, blog, or any number of other digital projects to give it a personal touch.
MLTI Minute Podcast
This podcast will show you how you can program your own text substitution and apply it globally to most Apps. installed on your Apple computer. The example in the podcast shows how to program the Mac to convert “LOL” automatically to, “That was quite a humorous statement.
This is a 3 minute video podcast, with audio directions provided as a guide and screencasting to provide clear visuals of the setup and configuration process.
CLICK HERE TO WATCH
I just finished listening to an episode of This American Life from NPR on the topic of “Middle School.” The topic was requested by who else, a middle school student who listens to the podcast. The entire podcast is available online as well as the individual segments. I just thought it was interesting to here from actual students about what they thought of middle school. It made me wonder what our students would say if they had been interviewed, and that we are not alone in the triumphs and challenges that we face everyday.