Tagged: periodic table

Scoop.it, SpongeLab and QR codes

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This week I have had some time to explore a few more sites and tools for science teaching and learning. SpongeLab has just launched a new site with graphics, animations, interactive games and a teacher’s section. You can set up classes and save a playlist of activities for students. You and your students have access to a free digital library of scientifically accurate and stunningly beautiful images, graphics, simulations and animations including exciting interactive games such as “History of Biology”, “Build a Cell” and “Build a Body”. SpongeLab uses credits to unlock premium activities, which are earned by time online (or purchased through PayPal).

Another great new resource is “Scoop.it“, which I came across on Twitter. Joe Evans has curated an “iPads in Education” e-magazine from various sites, and I used the tool to produce two Scoop.it titles “Education for Sustainability” and “VCE Biology“. Although the site is in beta, it seems to work really well – even on the iPad, which is not ideal for all purposes (I have found it of limited use in Google+ and blogging). Once you are registered and choose a title, you can select articles from various sources to add to your e-magazine. I was quite chuffed to discover that Lisa Neilsen, writer of “The Innovative Educator“, had mentioned me in her latest post about this tool.

This tool is a great way to introduce a topic to students, compare perspectives and editorial styles or collect resources for a project. I posted the Scoop.it link to my students on our Facebook page, where they can access videos, slideshows and other content that may be blocked at school.

Have you noticed those mysterious black and white squares popping up around the place? QR (quick response) codes are used like bar codes to store information, but have a much greater capacity. They can store over 7,000 characters, including URL’s, names, adresses, phone numbers or other information that can be quickly and easily transferred to a mobile phone or other device with a camera and the appropriate scanning application. Mr Robbo (the PE Geek) wrote about them way back in 2009 and they have been used in Japan since 1994 (according to Wikipedia). A very inventive use of the codes can be seen above, from Flickr, where the Periodic Table of QR Codes takes the user to a video of each element in the periodic table.

Year 8 Science – Elements and Compunds

Froth flotation

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This term we have been studying the elements of the periodic table, comparing elements and their compounds and discovering the properties of metals and non-metals. Find out more about the elements at the Interactive Periodic Table. This site, The Periodic Table of Videos, has videos with experiments and information about most of the naturally occuring 92 elements. The Minerals Council of Australia have some excellent resources to help our learning about the earth’s minerals, including “Oresome Froth” (how metals are extracted from their ores) and “Metals Matter” (use a virtual metal detector to discover the metal composition of everyday household objects). While I am on the Year 6/7 camp at Roses Gap this week you can explore the above sites and revise for the test which will be on March 12th.

After the earthquake off the coast 0f Chile this weekend, you may be interested in this animation from the BBC which shows how eathquakes cause tsunamis.

Periodic table of the elements – videos!

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Beth Still from the Nebraska Educators Network follows Will Richardson on Twitter, which had a link to this great site for chemistry teachers: The Periodic Table of Videos – short videos about each of the elements of the periodic table. So I’ve been back to Twitter and found some friends, and now I think I understand better how it works. It seems nothing I try really takes off the first time – I need a few months to let the idea brew – perhaps until I see a purpose for it – and then go back to it. It just seems to reinforce that learning is best done on an ‘as-needs’ basis. Make it relevant, authentic and interesting.