Friday, October 2, 2009

Glogster - Graphical Blog

Glogster, a great multimedia collage building platform that I'vewritten about in the past, has officially launched the live version of Glogster Edu. The new Glogster Edu eliminates all of the problems that teachers previously encountered when trying to use Glogster in the their classrooms. The new Glogster Edu is hosted separately from the commerical version of Glogster thereby eliminating links to Glogs (multimedia collages) containing questionable content hosted the commercial version of Glogster. Glogster Edu provides teachers with a virtual classroom space in which they can manage the accounts of up to 200 students. Glogster Edu has also partnered withVoiceThread to allow users to include VoiceThread content in their Glogs.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Khan Academy YouTube Channel

Hundreds of Math and Science Video Tutorials
Once again, Open Culture has discovered a real gem for education. Khan Academy has a YouTube Channel on which they have posted hundreds of mathematics and science tutorial videos. The videos range in length from five minutes to 20+ minutes. The videos that I previewed had clear spoken commentary as well as clear visual aids. The best thing I believe this presenter does is chat while teaching, so you feel that you are being taught one to one, face to face - almost.

BBC World News For Children

World News For Children
4 minute weekday news bulletin for 7-14 year olds. Accompanying scripts available on the BBC World Class website -

Myths and Opportunities: Technologies in the classroom by Alan November

Myths and Opportunities: Technology in the Classroom by Alan November from Brian Mull on Vimeo.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Teaching is not possible, only learning facilitation

Just throwing this out while I have it in my mind.
Many years ago now, the term learning facilitator was brought up and most teachers as well as myself discussed what a crazy, politically correct term. Nowadays I realise just how much this explains what we need to do.
I honestly believe that it is impossible to teach anybody (apart from yourself) anything at all. However, it is possible and commendable to help people learn. The old saying "you can lead a horse to water, but you cannot make it drink" is exactly what is going on here. And I do not just mean that some students are switched off. Even the very best students cannot be taught! They can learn and you can provide the best facilitation to make the learning as easy as possible, but you cannot force the learning into their head.
What we need to realise as teachers is that it does not matter how each student learns, we only need to provide the structure to allow this process to be an easy transmission.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Google Shortcuts

Google Shortcuts. A shortcut in general is defined as “a route shorter than the usual one.” I find this definition the best one because it can be applied to any meaning of the word including a “search shortcut” (not a keyboard shortcut) which basically means any pre-defined combination of characters / words that allows to quickly get an answer to your initial question.

This post is intended as a comprehensive guide to Google and Yahoo search shortcuts providing a cheat sheet of over 50 shortcuts and comparing the two search engines.

The other Google links that can be really useful are listed below:

Google Advanced Search is the place to go for specific searches. This can be utilised when looking for PDFs, or Power points, or Shockwave Files such as educational games.

Google Similar Images for when you are trying to find a picture to add to your work. You can do a normal search for the image that you want. But then once you find one that is close, click the "similar image" link below to pull up lots of similar images. You should be able to find that perfect picture now!

Google News Timeline allows you to search through news from all media to find articles about your search query, and presents it all in a timeline (days/weeks/months/years). Great for doing research and keeping articles current. Just remember that you may want to deselect the Times and Wikipedia Events.

Google Scholar provides a simple way to broadly search for scholarly literature. From one place, you can search across many disciplines and sources: peer-reviewed papers, theses, books, abstracts and articles, from academic publishers, professional societies, preprint repositories, universities and other scholarly organizations. Google Scholar helps you identify the most relevant research across the world of scholarly research.

Book Search works just like web search. Try a search on Google Book Search or on When we find a book with content that contains a match for your search terms, we'll link to it in your search results. If the book is out of copyright, or the publisher has given us permission, you'll be able to see a preview of the book, and in some cases the entire text. If it's in the public domain, you're free to download a PDF copy.

Motivator - Posters

Motivator allows you to create your own customized motivational posters. Armed with a digital camera and that non-stop wit of yours, you now have the power to turn a simple photograph into a humorous or inspirational message. Print it, frame it! Make two—we know you've got hundreds of digital images and photos to spare! Make your own inspirational, funny, parody, sports or other posters. Perfect for the office, schools, teachers, coaches, as announcements, for parties, invitations, and a lot more.

Free Music Archive

The Free Music Archive provides free, high-quality, music in a wide range of genres. The content on Free Music Archive is used under various creative commons licenses. The New York State Music Fund provided initial funding for FMA. FMA seeks to maintain a high-quality resource through the use of selected curators who approve or deny all submissions to the collection.

Anyone can download music from FMA for use in podcasts, videos, and other digital presentation formats. The music collections can be searched by genre or by curator.

Setting up a blog.


This was a really easy way to set up a blog. All I needed to do was to go to the website and follow the prompts. It helped that I already had a google account which pulled in my detail.

Once you have set up your blog you can begin to create the content and customise your site. You can also add other blogs that you are watching or create other blogs under different headings.

If you want to switch blogs that you have created, or go to the other blogs that you are watching you will need to click on the dashboard up the top.

Good Luck and add me to your blog.