Friday, May 17, 2013

Dictionary of Numbers - Putting Numbers in Human Terms

Numbers.  We see them everywhere and we share them in our classrooms, but often times when we are sharing numbers with students they struggle with comprehending how those numbers equate to real life or relating them to something they might be more familiar with.  Dictionary of Numbers is a Google Chrome extension that helps to try and make sense of the numbers we encounter on the web.  The extension will take a number and put it into human terms.  For example, "4 million people" means little, but "population of Kentucky" will help to mean more and make numbers more relevant.

The extension works in several ways.  Dictionary of Numbers searches through the page for numbers it can understand and when it finds one, it will add in an inline explanation for that number in human terms.  The extension also contains a search as well, so if a you are teaching a lesson and it involves numerical data that you want in human terms, Dictionary of Numbers will help.

For more information, see the video below.

h/t to Lifehacker for the find.  

Five From my Feedly

Another solid job of blog posting by the people in my the past two days.  Speaking of two days, that is how many students have left in school for us.  Hard to believe how fast the year has gone by.  Looking forward to summer break and hitting the golf course.

1.) Tip of the Week: End of the Year Self-Reflection and Student Evaluations is a post by the History Tech blog that I read.  Reflection is a large part of being a teacher.  Teacher evaluation is changing in Kentucky and part of the process will be student evaluation.  This post provides some samples of evaluations that students can use for evaluating their teachers.

2.) Four Approaches to Getting Content OFF Elementary Students' iPads - No Email, No Problem, Part 2 is a guest post on Free Technology for Teachers.  Teaching high school I failed to even think about how "being under 13" prevents elementary students from having access to tools that high school students have access too.  If you are an elementary school using, or contemplating using iPads, this is a must read.

3.) How Can I Make My PowerPoint Presentations Amazing is a post on Lifehacker that I thought was worth sharing, because even with all the new "Web 2.0" tools available, it is still the predominant lecture method in schools.  If it is going to be used, it would be worth while to ensure that it is a presentation that really gets participants attention.

4.) Yesterday was a big Google conference and they unveiled a ton of new software and upgrades.  One of those was the Google Play Music All Access.  Streaming music is popular (and although it takes up bandwidth in schools, it is still a tool to be utilized) and more companies and apps are getting into the music industry through streaming music.  Google Play Music All Access: Should It Be Your New Streaming Service? is another post of Lifehacker that helps readers understand the differences between various streaming music services.

5.) With the end of Google Reader comes a need for a new RSS service and for some teachers starting something new when it comes to technology can be frustrating.  Over at The Edublogger, the Educators' Guide to RSS and Google Reader Replacements is a great post for teachers looking to keep their RSS feeds going and are wondering about possible alternatives for Google Reader.

Clickberry - Make YouTube Videos Interactive

Clickberry is a new service that allows users to tag and add aspects to their videos during play.  The tags can provide names, information, links, pop-ups and more.  Clickberry requires users to install an extension in Chrome or Firefox to use the service.  Users can define clickable regions within the video enabling users to highlight important moments or important parts of a video.  The service also becomes a social service as users can add Facebook "Like" buttons as well.  For an introduction, see the video below.

For those iPhone Users, there is the Clickberry Tagger app that allows users to tag and make videos interactive from their phone.

For Windows, Mac, and iPad there is the Clickberry Interactivity Creator.

I could see teachers utilizing the service to help students identify people in videos that they are studying or helping students focus on an important fact shown in the video.  Videos can be a valuable tool in the classroom if used correctly.  Often times students have trouble focusing and discovering what to look for while watching a video.  Clickberry could provide teachers a way to incorporate content information into the videos they are watching.