Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Wednesday Web of the Week:

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Web address:

With the vast amount of resources available to us today it is easy to overlook the ones right on our doorstep.  I have heard this site referred to and the Genetic Science Learning Center is housed on the University of Utah campus.  so these folk are UEN's neighbors.  Despite every good reason I had for knowing about them.  I didn't.  Until yesterday when during a presentation one of the people involved in the project asked me why their materials weren't linked to our Science Resources page.  Well, they are now and we will be linking more.

These resources are fantastic simulations, activities and general background for those learning about genetics.  The focus of this project is specifically 5-12 and they have a fantastic staff that keeps freshening up the content.  The really wonderful thing is there is a sister site:

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Buy a book!

This blog has highlighted the various eBook and eReader formats. These have truly changed the way our world consumes text. The various eReaders have enabled us to carry dozens of books in a much smaller space while still being able to highlight amid take notes right on the text just like a real book. Amazon's Kindle books even allow for social highlighting. Passages of text that you highlight can be shared anonymously and you can view how many others have highlighted passages.

But even more amazing are the books that aren't books. Many of the books available on both the iPhone OS and the newer Android are Apps. Many books are aviable as stand alone Apps. But these Apps go way beyond just the text. They allow interaction with artifacts from the book, and can even embed multimedia. It takes the experience of reading a book to really experiencing a book. One premier example of this is the Bram Stoker Family Edition of Dracula for the iPad. Learn more about it at:

Tech Tip Tuesday: Make a list...put headphones on it!

Each year in the fall millions of kids come home with a list of the school supplies they need.  For the Tech tip this week I have two suggestions.  First, make a list.  Espcially in Secondary education where students have between 6 and 8 different teachers they have an enormous list of lists.  They get a different list of materials required for each class.  Sometimes buried in a paragraph of a multiple page Open Disclosure document.

So, make a list. Use a wiki, GoogleSpreadsheets or my.uen to create a list of all the materials students in your grade need.  Teachers can collaborate on the list making it comprehensive.  It could even be prioritized with color coding so parents know which items are 'useful' but not 'required'

As a tech suggestion, add headphones or earbuds to the list.  Many schools spend a portion of their tech budget each year providing headphones for the school computer lab.  Asking students to provide their own makes for a much more sanitary and simpler solution.  Earbuds can be purchased at many Super Stores and Grocery stores for less than $3 making them equivalent in cost to a nice pen.  It can be invaluable in a computer lab setting to have students be able to engage with the audio without having to compete with a dozen other computers nearby.

Creating a list like this with GoogleDocs might look like this!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Wednesday Web of the Week: Mission U.S.

Web address:

[caption id="attachment_950" align="alignleft" width="385" caption="Mission U.S."]Mission U.S.[/caption]

Learning often involves becoming immersed in a topic well enough to see things from a different perspective.  Mission U.S. is just such an immersive experience.  Mission U.S. is an interactive first person simulation of life during the U.S. Revolutionary period. As a player you become Nat Wheeler and make a series of decisions and take on a series of tasks to progresss through the gameplay.  Based on your decisions you either become a revolutionary or a loyalist and you can never know fully which direction each choice might take you.

This project will be highlighted in UEN's Professional Development Faculty Lounge.  Visit at 3:00 p.m. on Thursday December 2 to join in or Click Here ( to see the archives.  The archives are usually posted within a week of the original webcast.

For additional support in teaching about the United States Colonial period visit UEN's Colonial Williamsburg page:

Welcome to Jorgie Learning

I really am learning and this blog is maintained both as a record of some of what I am doing as well as a place for me to train and teach others about creating an online presence. So please don't mind the dust. We aren't remodeling we are learning!

Visit some of my other blogs or the other blogs I find mildly entertaining for a more polished feel.