Tsunami – in the classroom?

I wonder how many classrooms in Australia will spend time this week talking about, reviewing and learning about the impact of earthquakes and tsunami  on countries and people?

This weekend saw the earthquake in Chile and the tsunami it created affecting many parts of the world.  The Chilean president declared a state of catastrophe after a deadly quake of magnitude 8.8. Subsequently warnings of tidal waves were issued in 53 other countries.

In the Guardian’s Report Chile Earthquake: Pacific nations brace for Tsunami we have a good lead article to set the scene for discussion.

The Tsunami raced across the Pacific and threatened Hawaii as it rushed toward the U.S. West Coast and hundreds of islands from the bottom of the planet to the top. Sirens blared in Hawaii to alert residents to the potential waves. As the waves expected arrival drew near, roads into tourist-heavy Waikiki were closed off.  Police patrolled main roads, telling tourists to get off the streets.

It’s not new – social media has a well established co-reporting global events!

But do your teachers know this?  Do they know powerful social media is in providing information and synchronous coverage of event?

Did they pick up the links they need via Twitter? of Facebook? or other social networking site?

Perhaps they already have the Associated News App on their iPhone (find it in the App store)  and were aware of events that way? or via another mobile App?  or heard it on the news?

Did they send out a message (text? IM?) to their geography students to alert them to the CBS News Stream via Ustream so they could experience live some of these events – even if only for a few minutes?

Not only were the media doing live reports online, as well as on TV, but people in the streets were contributing picture and live phone feeds and images to contribute to the pooling of information.

Twitter was buzzing.

Don’t forget to check out Diigo and Delicious during the week to find more links from other  ‘connected’ teachers.  

From a student’s point of view – social media tools allow them to experience these  incidents live and hear the authentic experiences of people observing the event.

By Monday there will be plenty of online media sites that will have stories, videos, etc to use for class review. But none of that is as good as experiencing a live report! How many teachers will be ready to immerse their students in learning with the very tools that students love to use?

Here’s someone ready to incorporate this type of learning into their uni classes - Magnitude vs Intensity in Chile. Learning can be amazing.

Larry Ferlazzo provides The Best Sites to Learn about the Earthquake in Chile (& possible Tsunami).

Go on teachers – give it a try!!  Here’s a great map of Estimated Tsunami arrival times to get you talking.

The picture below shows the live CBS News UStream.

Innovations keep rolling out ~ Google Living Stories

Living Stories provide a new, experimental way to consume news, developed by a partnership between Google, the New York Times, and the Washington Post. In Living Stories, you can read the same reporting and analysis that you expect from the Times and the Post, delivered on a highly interactive platform.

more about “Google Living Stories“, posted with vodpod

gr8 lol ~ Great Libraries of Learning

Support for school libraries in Far North Queensland is gr8!  The team at the Far North Queensland FNQ Learning Development Centre – ICT, have put together a fabulous brochure promoting change and essential development to ensure quality school libraries.  They have allowed me to embed the document here, so that you can download a copy for your own school district.  

There is also a gr8 lol::Great Libraries for Learning wiki to support the document – making it easy to cross-reference within your own online sites.

It’s pretty nice to be quoted in this brochure :-)

NeoK12 makes learning easy!

As the site says, kids learn best by ‘seeing’ the world.  I love embedding videos as teasers into learning programs, or as nuggets of information at the right point in the learning sequence.  So I was pretty pleased when I came across neoK12 in my RSS feeds.

NeoK12 offers a great way to search for free online educational videos from all over the Internet.  30 second search provided me with some videos that will be perfect for a Year 7 science research project starting next term.  Just saved myself heaps of time, AND the videos will mean that I can embed them right into the wiki!

I recommend taking a peek. Covers just about every subject area you might want. Even better… apparently all lessons and videos have been screened by K-12 teachers.

Eye catching mashups for the Grammy Awards

Show this to the art and music department!!

Reported by Fiona in Information Visualisation and Data: a Music Example:

Promotion for this year’s Grammy Awards focuses on some very eye catching visualisations of some of the nominated artists, made up of the names of some of their favourite songs. An amazing mashup between structured data, tag clouds, and the style of ASCII art you might have made a decade or two ago. Click through to the article to view some examples of the ads (no CC/free versions available). The LA Times has more about how they were created -

“A Grammy spokeswoman says each artist was asked to give the Recording Academy 10-20 songs that influenced or affected their life and career. The lyrics and song titles are then featured in the print and television ads.”