Friday, April 9, 2010

Friday Focus - Cool Stuff!!

Ahh, Spring Break, one of those wonderful perks of teaching.  I enjoyed the time of relaxation and a break from everything and being semi-unplugged for a few days.  While I was taking a break I received some interesting websites that I want to share.  Most are subject based, some or broad.  Hope you find some that you like.

The Story of Bottled Water - I came across this interesting video that tells the story of how bottled water was developed.  It talks about Manufactured Demand (Great for an economics lesson...what other products were created because of manufactured demand?) and the false perception of bottled water.  You could also use the video as an introductory lesson in Science for students to develop their own experiment on the preference of bottled water and tap water.  Marketing classes could also use the website to discuss how bottled water is marketed to make it appear it is fresh from the mountains, when in reality it is just purified tap water.  The Story of Bottled Water comes from the website, The Story of Stuff Project.  There is also a video about Cap and Trade, and a video in the future about the Story of Electronics.  The site, videos, and books are the work of Annie Leonard.

What Happened In My Birth Year is an interesting site because of how it tells what happened your birth year.  What Happened In My Birth Year types out what happened like a typewriter.  As I was visiting the site, I realized it was taking to long, so I closed it.  When I attempted to close it, it prompted me to finish because it was moving to slow.  The site discusses books, movies, current events, etc.  Be neat to share with your students.

For you elementary teachers I came across a site called Write4Kids.com which can help you write your own children's book.  If you are someone interested in writing your own book, then Write4Kids.com would be a great starting point that provides tips and help for writing a book.

From the National Parks Service and the U.S. Department of the Interior is a great website that helps students learn more about Alcatraz Island and the multimedia that is available to learn about Alcatraz.  Could be a neat lesson for local California teachers (if they were not pink slipped)

Peter Lourie is a present day explorer/archeologist who has his own website talking about his adventures.  He also has a teachers page where he shares many of his lessons as well as experiences visiting and talking with students.  This would be an excellent resource for elementary teachers to look at for a while.  The man has been TONS of places that we all study in Elementary and Middle School.

South Pole Quest is a great site for learning about the South Pole.  It also has links for education and offered students the opportunity to ask questions about life at the South Pole.  Definitely worth looking into for a great geography lesson.
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