Archive for August, 2010

Re-discovering your inspiration

Aug. 29th 2010

Amid demands to publish, never-ending research projects, classes filled to capacity, and endless papers to grade, it can be easy to forget why you decided to become a teacher in the first place. Meeting goals for learning objectives and assessments can make teaching seem routine instead of inspiring. When it seems like you’ve become so mired in the daily drudgery of powerpoints and handouts that you’ve forgotten that you are there to make a connection with the students, there are some great inspirational books that can help you re-connect with the ideals that started you on your path towards becoming a teacher.

1. Why I Teach: Inspirational True Stories from Teachers Who Make a Difference

These real-life stories will give teachers a boost at the end of a long, hard day at work, or in those down times when they start second-guessing the work they’re doing. These stories will share real-life successes, breakthroughs and lessons learned. There are even ideas for activities that can be used in class to help connect with students and inspire them.

2. The Courage to Teach: Exploring the Inner Landscape of a Teacher’s Life

Parker Palmer’s moving classic explores the passion and call to teaching that most educators share. According to the introduction, “It is for teachers who refuse to harden their hearts, because they love learners, learning, and the teaching life.” Palmer shares his own struggles and triumphs with teaching, and he explores teaching as a spiritual venture. The book includes a bonus audio CD of a conversation between Palmer and colleagues about what they have learned through interviews with thousands of educators for the book.

3. Mentors, Masters and Mrs. MacGregor: Stories of Teachers Making a Difference

These stories are written from the perspective of students and former students about the teachers and mentors who made a difference in their lives. The collection includes contributions from Dave Barry, Shari Lewis, Steve Allen, Joe Paterno, and more.

4. Not Quite Burned Out, but Crispy Around the Edges

Remember your first week of teaching? That nervousness, excitement and overall sense of exhaustion by the end of it all? Sharon M. Draper, the 1997 Teacher of the Year and a motivational speaker, explores those experiences through this collection of entertaining and inspiring tales and essays. Read this book and remember the way you felt when you started — and re-discover your inspiration.

5. Apples and Chalkdust

This volume features short stories of two pages each with an inspirational quote or scripture passage to set the tone for each. One reader gave this feedabck: “After 30 years in teaching, I must say that I have experienced most of the lessons about which Ms. Carvana writes. It is a fast read, yet a guide that each teacher should have on his or her desk to refer to often. It was truly inspirational and enjoyable!”

6. Teacher, You Have My Heart

This devotional for teachers is written from the point of view of a parent instructing teachers on the special duty they have to connect with and instruct children. Getting another perspective is one of the best ways to step back from your own problems and worries and understand your motivation.

7. 365 Meditations for Teachers

There is a meditation here for every day of the year, enough to keep giving you reassurance, guidance and inspiration to keep going through even the hardest teaching days. And with so many meditations to choose from, there are enough to look at multiple times and still gain new insights over time.

8. Celebrate Teachers: Heartwarming Stories, Inspirational Sayings, and Meaningful Expressions for Teachers

The “Celebrate” series sets its sights on teaching with this volume, which includes encouraging true stories and inspiring quotes. There are also practical tips and advice for everyday activities.

9. Listen Up, Teacher! You are Making a Difference!

Written from the perspective of a student, this books lays out 10 important characteristics that teachers should have in order to make a difference in the classroom. Companion materials are also available for training sessions. This could be used for refresher workshops in your school to re-focus your department.

10. Inspire for Teachers: Prayers, Promises, and Proverbs for Those Who Change Lives and Touch Hearts

This book draws on faith and religious belief to offer inspiration to teachers. Prayers and scriptural passages are used to offer encouragement and provide divine inspiration for teachers.

Posted by maria magher | in Education | No Comments »

Best software for teachers

Aug. 29th 2010

Who says your grade book has to be a spiral-bound paper book, or that your tests and quizzes have to be made from scratch? There are numerous software packages available to help make basic teaching tasks easier and to save you time. And for teachers who are already overworked and have classes that are over-enrolled, time is a premium.

Here are some of our picks for the best software available for teachers:

1. Master Grade

This easy-to-use software compiles information for all of the students in your classroom, including attendance and assignments by type and grade weight. The software also allows you to create spreadsheets for all of your classes, to make seating assignments, to generate term reports and more. There are also detailed profiles for students.The software is available for $39.32 for Windows or Macintosh.

2. TI-Nspire

Texas Instruments, the well-known makers of graphing calculators, created this software, which allows teachers to streamline all of their instructional content. The software includes a library of lessons that are ready to use and gives teachers the option to modify activities or create their own lessons. There is also a large catalog of questions that can be used for discussion or testing, and the questions can be chosen according to type (open-ended, multiple choice, etc.). There are also numerous options for using the software in class and for communicating with students.

3. Schoolhouse Test

This software allows teachers to easily create and print a test, quiz or exam. Teachers can navigate the software by assigning a level and category, then selecting questions. There are also options to create test questions based on diagrams or other images, to use fill-in-the-blank questions, and to create tests based on math equations. And, of course, there are multiple choices for question types in order to assess different learning styles.

4. Markin

Students like to submit work digitally, so instead of printing out papers and marking them up with notes, teachers can use this software to digitally annotate essays and term papers with comments and other notes. The marked papers can be e-mailed to the student individually, or they can be uploaded to a web server for viewing.

5. 1st Class Gradebook

Here’s another software package that will allow you to keep track of your grades electronically. You can enter grades, create reports, and build profiles for your classes or individual students. The software is available for a free trial, and after that, it costs $69.99.

6. EVE2 Plagiarism Detection System

Don’t spend hours on Google researching a paper you suspect of being plagiarized — let this software do it for you. The software searches Web sites for matching content, then provides a report showing side-by-side comparisons of the content. It claims to work faster than plagiarism-detection Web sites. The cost is $29.99.

7. Flipbook Printer

Make your own Flipbooks from .AVI files printed on business cards. These can be used as a classroom activity, or teachers can create their own flipbooks for classroom use. The best part? It’s a free download.

8. Vocabulary Worksheet Maker

Teachers can use this software to make word searches, crosswords, jumbles, and other vocabulary puzzles and activities to help students learn vocabulary. There are numerous options for activities that teachers can create, and there are also study guides that can be given to students. Costs start at $59 for this software, which is available for multiple Windows platforms.

9. Instant Lesson Planner 2000 Plus

This handy software lets you create and organize your lesson plans for safekeeping year after year. The interface allows for editing according to state standards, learning objectives, and more. There are also options to link to tests, activities, worksheets, and more. This software makes keeping track of your files easy!

10. Disciplinary Referral Sheet

This software makes filling in disciplinary forms fast and easy. It also allows teachers to keep track of what forms have been submitted and to track history with a particular student. There are also options for parent communication. A free trial is available.

Posted by maria magher | in Education, Technology | No Comments »

Before you go to college, figure out what you really want to do

Aug. 26th 2010

In the discussion over for-profit colleges, a lot of attention has been paid to how well these institutions are preparing students for gainful employment. Some have focused on the high debt load that students take on, while others have focused on how well students are counseled on the degrees they choose.

It is the latter point that needs more scrutiny — at all colleges, for-profit or not. Not only is there little done to counsel students on the degrees they should pursue based on their career interests, but there is little done to counsel them on how to choose those careers. Many students arrive at college — and graduate — without any idea about what they want to do with their lives. When they begin their studies, most students are just starting to live their lives independently and have little experience and little understanding of what it is they want to do. They often choose majors for careers that they end up realizing that have no passion for, or they later pursue careers that have nothing to do with their majors. And many opt for malleable degrees such as English or Liberal Studies that can be applied to a wide variety of disciplines.

In order to make the college experience — and its resulting degree — more meaningful for its purpose, it would serve students well to make career counseling a central part of the academic planning process. Thought most schools already offer these services for students who seek them out, they are not made a critical component of the educational process. They should be.

For students who don’t have access to career counseling services at their college or university — such as those attending for-profit institutions — there are some other options.

Personality testing

The Myers Briggs Type Indicator is one of the most commonly used tests to help you understand your basic personality type and what occupations it might be suited for best. There are 16 personality types identified by the test, with four different attributes: either extroverted or introverted, thinking or feeling, judging or perceiving, and sensing or intuitive. For example, the description of an INFJ reads:

Seek meaning and connection in ideas, relationships, and material possessions. Want to understand what motivates people and are insightful about others. Conscientious and committed to their firm values. Develop a clear vision about how best to serve the common good. Organized and decisive in implementing their vision.

These core personality traits can tell you about what kind of work will suit you best.

The Self-Directed Search is another test that assesses your basic interests to find out what kind of work will suit you. Test takers are asked a series of questions about what tasks interest them and how they would rate their specific skills. Then a personalized report is generated with personality analysis and career suggestions.

The Campbell Interest and Skill Survey and the Strong Interest Inventory provide similar services, assessing an individual’s personality type and interests.

These tests can often be taken individually and online, but the Myers Briggs Type Indicator must be administered by a professional who can properly explain the results.

Professional career counseling

There are numerous career counseling services available both online and in your local area. Licensed social workers, psychologists and psychiatrists can often guide you through making career decisions and finding the best career to suit your interests and goals.

Many online services are also available.

CareerCounseling.com offer career assessment and career testing, career exploration, research, coaching, and guidance on preparing a resume and finding a job. There are also ads for jobs and services to post your resume with employers.

CareerPlanner.com offers career and personality testing, as well as counseling on resume writing and changing careers.

The Career Key offers services for students, parents, adults, school counselors and teachers, college, career development professionals, and potential licensees. There are numerous resources for testing, counseling, advice, strategies, and more.

The Center for Professional Development offers counseling for individuals, corporations and organizations, and those looking to continue their education or make a career change.

Books


Also consider some of these self-help guides for career guidance:

What Color is Your Parachute? A classic book, updated.

Getting from College to Career

The Pathfinder: How to Choose or Change Your Career for a Lifetime of Satisfaction and Success Great for job seekers of all kinds!

Do What You Are: Discover the Perfect Career for You Through the Secrets of Personality Type

Now What? The Young Person’s Guide to Choosing the Perfect Career

Life’s a Bitch and Then You Change Careers: 9 Steps to Get Out of Your Funk and On to Your Future

The Career Guide for Creative and Unconventional People

I Could Do Anything if Only I Knew What it Was: How to Discover What You Really Want and How to Get It

Escape from Corporate America: A Practical Guide to Creating the Career of Your Dreams

Career Match: Connecting Who You Are with What You’ll Love to Do

Posted by maria magher | in Career, Education | No Comments »

25 best chemistry blogs for college students

Aug. 23rd 2010

1. Chemistry Blog

A group of 16 bloggers — ranging from professors to researchers to graduate students — manage this blog, which features news, reviews, tips, and more. You’ll find a lot of useful information with advice for the classroom, research and even the job search. There are also links to resources, books, and more. This is a thorough, resource-rich blog that offers a little bit of something for everyone.

2. NNNS Chemistry Blog

This thorough, professional blog hosts in-depth discussions of chemical research and other news of interest to the scientific community. Researchers and students (both graduate and undergraduate) will find a great resource in this blog.

3. Carbon-based Curiosities

Two grad students and a “coblogginator” write this blog about organic chemistry with a mission to make the topic fun and build community. The blog includes personal experiences, thoughtful discussion, and links to a lot of great material. There is also an extensive blogroll by scientific interest.

4. Back Re(Action)

This blog includes “Events on the world lines of two theoretical physicists, from the horizon to timelike infinity. A scientifically minded blog with varying amounts of entertainment, distractions, and every day trivialities.” Reviews, analysis, news, discussion and resources can all be found here. Posts are nicely organized according to scientific interest, topic, and category.

5. ChemBark

Chemistry and chemical research are the primary focus of this blog, which includes “ideas, experiments, data, publications, writing, education, current events, scientific policy, academic politics, history, and trivia.” Posts are published by a private community of blog authors, and no ads or blogroll are published.

6. Chemical Engineering World

The goal of this blog is to help other young professional chemical engineers. Posts talk about the author’s experiences and research. There are also discussions about professional development and finding work, including links and job postings.

7. Adventures in Ethics and Science

What often isn’t taught — or maybe can’t be taught — in college is professional behavior. This blog discusses rules for responsible scientific research, communication within the professional community, teaching, and ethics. Some notable recent posts include Research Methods and Primary Literature, Paid Sick Leave and Ethics, and Am I Asking Too Little of the First Amendment?.

8. Chemistry Central

News, reviews, and discussions about chemical research and practices can all be found on this resource-rich blog. There are also many suggestions for activities or methods for teachers, but college students will find some of these suggested resources valuable, as well. There are also many useful links, including other topic-specific scientific blogs run by the same blog host.

9. Reactive Chemistry Blog

Pop culture and technology are drawn into the ongoing discussion of chemical research and news in this thorough and authoritative blog. Some popular posts include Carbon Dioxice Solution, Melanotan Suntan in a Syringe, and Echinaccea and Swine Flu.

10. The Sceptical Chemist

The editors of Nature Chemistry host this blog, which aims to foster a spirited discussion of the latest news and research in chemistry. Multiple authors contribute, and posts can be searched by topic and category. Some notable recent posts include Making More of Methods, BOSS: Minimal ‘Enzymes’ for Catalysis, and Taste receptors, chemical kinetics and equilibrium.

11. Chemistry World Blog

Chemistry World is a monthly magazine in the U.K., and this is its blog. News, opinions, and reviews can all be found here. Readers can also start their own discussion threads, and all the posts are moderated by the editor.

12. Chem-Bla-Ics

As the name suggests, the focus of this blog is Chemblaics, which uses computers to solve problems in chemistry. The process uses open-source software, open data and open standards.

13. Cheminfostream

Chemistry isn’t the only focus of this blog — posts also cover chemical information and modeling, cheminformatics, drug discovery, and predictive toxicology. There are numerous resources on the blog, including links to companies, instructors, and workshops.

14. Molecule of the Day

Learn about a molecule a day with this fun blog, which tries to connect chemistry with everyday things of interest to non-chemists. Some recent posts discuss brominated vegetable oil, anti-depressants, and fat dogs.

15. Org Prep Daily

Students are sure to learn a lot from this blog, which posts synthetic procedures. The blog authors says, “The experiments were joy to set up+run, the purifications were a piece of cake, the crystals were shiny and the yields were terrific – or maybe weren’t but I liked the preparation anyway.”

16. Totally Synthetic

A medicinal chemist writes this blog, which discusses chemical research (both the author’s own and that of other scientists), methodology, and more. You’ll also find relevant articles, links and resources, and some of the author’s personal musings on the field.

17. Useful Chemistry

Nine contributors write this blog, which chronicles research done for the UseefulChem project at Drexel University. Research focuses on the synthesis of novel anti-malarial compounds, and detailed notes are made available.

18. Chemical Space

A medical chemist explores current research and news in chemistry. Some categories for postings include jobs, lab work, industry news, and Internet tools.

19. A Chemistry Quesiton, Daily

Despite the blog’s name, you won’t find a daily chemistry question here. Posts aren’t published every day, and they don’t always include a question. But they do explore chemistry problems and the author’s experiences with learning chemistry. The author is a 16-year-old Romanian student whose passion is chemistry.

20. Chemjobber

The focus of this blog is “quantifying the chemistry job market,” which, like many other fields, is bad. The blog looks at news and trends in the market and offers advise and discussion about how to navigate the field.

21. Chemiotics II

Organic chemistry is one of the focuses of this blog, which also looks at math, medicine, and biology. Some notable recent posts include 2 New Kinds of Genes. Who Knew? We didn’t., A Chemical Gedanken Experiment, and Why Should a Protein Have Just One Shape or Any Shape for That Matter?

22. Med-Chemist

Here’s another blog by a medical chemist, with a focus on medical chemistry. Posts often discuss advanced topics in chemistry, including the latest news and research. The author also shares many valuable resources.

23. A Schooner of Science

Captain Skellett is a pirate and scientist who talks about her research, science in pop culture, news, and other items of note. She includes many useful links and resources, and she also hosts a number of YouTube vidoes.

24. The Culture of Chemistry

A chemistry professor at Bryn Mawr College writes this blog, which began as part of a grant to write teaching materials for physical chemistry that incorporated modern research and “the culture of chemistry.” The author’s research focuses on computational chemistry, and many of her posts reflects those interests.

25. Periodic Tabloid

According to the blog author Tom Tritton, “Periodic Tabloid is an ongoing record of Tom Tritton’s actions and impressions as he makes the transition from college president to president and CEO of the Chemical Heritage Foundation, a library, museum, and center for scholars based in Philadelphia.”

Posted by maria magher | in Education, Technology | No Comments »

100 reasons why educators should use blogs

Aug. 20th 2010


For students:

1. Blogs are fun! Many of your students likely already keep a personal blog. Using a blog in the classroom will help students relate to the lesson.

2. They help students develop and hone their writing skills.

3. They model forms and standards of writing for students. Show them what good writing looks like vs. bad writing. Talk about style, tone, and usage. Blogs are an oasis of free writing samples.

4. Blogs can stand in as online student journals for a variety of classroom modules.

5. Blogs can increase the sense of community and camaraderie amongst classmates.

6. They can be used to help students understand appropriate online sources. Show students how to evaluate blogs for their authority, credibility and usefulness.

7. When used for group work, they can foster collaboration and team-building skills.

8. They can help promote and develop reading skills.

9. They provide another outlet for different styles of learning. Blogs help students who learn through hands-on work and are more verbally oriented.

10. Blogs can be used to encourage discussion anytime — whether in or outside of class.

11. Students can use blogs to develop online portfolios of their work.

12. In large classes, blogs can be used to create smaller groups and to form more cohesive units even while in class.

13. Most students now are digital natives. Blogs engage them by presenting material in a way that is familiar and comfortable.

14. Students have a larger audience when they blog. If the blog is public, they are potentially writing for a global audience. This knowledge may empower them and their work.

15. Blogs allow for self-directed learning. If they are assigned as independent or homework projects, students can work on them when they feel inspired to do so.

16. They allow for multimedia interaction. Students can post pictures, videos, links, and more.

17. Students can hone their editing skills by critiquing the work of others.

18. Parents can view their child’s work and progress as shown on a blog.

19. Blogs can model rules of behavior for online interaction, teaching students online etiquette.

20. Students can take pride in their work since blog creation reflects their independent efforts.

21. Working online fosters a sense of global interaction. Students can be taught to understand the dangers and the benefits of interacting online and producing work online.

22. As an independent project, blogs allow students to showcase their independence and sense of responsibility.

23. Blogs save paper.

24. Blogs provide a virtual announcement board for important messages about homework, assignments, deadlines, and more.

25. Students can communicate with their teachers and other students through a blog. This is especially helpful for shy students who might not otherwise reach out.

26. Teachers can communicate with parents directly and as a group through blogs.

27. They provide an outlet for students who are shy.

28. Blogs give students the chance to express their creativity in academic ways.

29. Students can work on collaborative writing projects through blogs.

30. They prepare students for online social networking.

31. Blogs help students understand how to build an online presence.

32. They help increase student confidence levels by giving them self-directed projects.

33. Work is permanently stored on a blog. Students can review their work — theoretically — for years to come. Blog space can be obtained for free, and so long as the teacher doesn’t remove the content, it will remain there.

34. Students can determine the topic of posts on blogs, making them more inspired and excited to participate.

35. If blogs are used as reading material, students can choose the type and style of blog that appeals to them, making them more excited about reading.

36. Blogs can teach students the proper use of citation — especially of hyperlinks.

37. Blogs can be used to teach students about plagiarism. There are numerous examples of how easy online content makes it to plagiarize.

38. Students can express their own opinions — and, therefore, their identities — through blogs. It gives them more freedom than traditional academic outlets.

39. They offer supplemental reading or exercises for a particular course of study. Students can use them to gain a deeper understanding of a subject.

40. Students can hone their analytical skills through critique of blogs or development of their own.

41. They give students an outlet for ideas or comments that may have occurred to them after an in-class discussion has ended.

42. Blogs will help students widen their vocabulary.

43. Blogs will help students improve their grammar.

44. Students will be able to improve their persuasive writing skills, specifically.

45. Blogs can help students establish themselves as “experts” on a given topic.

46. Blogs give students a space for process-based learning. They don’t have to include the finished project. They can be there for drafts, free writing and more.

47. Students can use blogs as a space to brainstorm ideas and get feedback on their ideas from other classmates.

48. Teachers have a wide variety of reading materials and writing samples instantly available during class.

49. Many authoritative agencies and authors maintain blogs about their subject interest. These offer valuable tools and insights for classroom discussion.

50. Blogs are relevant!

For teachers:

51. Blogs offer a community of experts to offer advise, share tips, and commiserate over experiences.

52. Teachers can build their professional learning network through blogs by connecting with other experts and learning about new tools in their field.

53. Blogs can highlight professional experience and build the reputation of an educator.

54. Blogs can be used as a forum to vet classroom ideas — including lesson plans, activities, and curriculum.

55. Teachers can learn more about Web 2.0 tools and become more comfortable and familiar with them through the practice of writing a blog.

56. Blogs can serve as a sounding board to vent frustrations in the classroom or in the working environment.

57. Education news and trends can be gleaned from reading blogs.

58. Blogs highlight valuable resources that educators can use both in and out of the classroom.

59. Blogs help you meet people you wouldn’t otherwise be able to meet.

60. They increase accountability for the teacher and the school by making the classroom process more transparent.

61. The increased transparency will build trust and rapport with parents and the community.

62. Blogs can teach educators about online etiquette.

63. Blogs prepare educators for other forms of social networking.

64. They make teachers aware of current events and trends that are important to students — especially pop culture.

65. Blogs help educators remain flexible and adaptable. They are a new medium/technology for many, and learning how to maintain one requires learning new skills.

66. They allow educators to initiate discussions that are meaningful and relevant to them.

67. Blogs offer a sense of community among educators — or even among those within a particular institution.

68. Blogs give teachers a forum to share unconventional ideas that may not have had a hearing in more traditional outlets.

69. Educators can use blogs to publish works that may have been rejected by traditional publishers.

70. Private blogs can offer a useful space for reflection and process-based work.

71. Just like students, educators can use blogs to improve their writing skills.

72. Blogs can be used to facilitate classroom discussion.

73. Teachers can post questions or assign a discussion thread through a blog.

74. Blogs can be used to host classroom competitions.

75. Teachers can highlight a “student of the week” or “student of the month” on a blog, giving the student more exposure and the award more prestige.

76. Prizes and other special mentions can be advertised through a blog.

77. A school or college can use a blog as a community roundtable — highlighting events, hosting discussions, and posting useful information.

78. Blogs can offer a space for teachers to post additional comments or questions that may have been overlooked during a lesson — or only considered after class ended.

79. Writing a blog gives educators a way to relate to students.

80. Blogs offer a space for teachers to be more creative with their content.

81. Personal blogs — or professional blogs that include personal information about the teacher — give students a way to get to know the teacher better.

82. Blogs give teachers more autonomy, allowing them more possibilities for their lessons, including podcasts, videos, photos and more.

83. Blogs serve as a professional calling card. Teachers can use them to supplement an application or a push for a promotion.

84. Blogs can help teachers build up a reputation within a subject area that is not their area of specialty. For instance, if an English teacher wants to do more work with history, he or she can write and publish research through a blog to build up credentials in that subject area.

85. Blogging can motivate teachers to do more. If a blog has a following, then the writer will feel compelled to update often with valuable content.

86. If the content is compelling enough — or has enough professional value — blogs can help teachers get noticed and potentially land a book deal.

87. Publishing content to the Web makes you more aware of the quality of your product (be they lesson plans, articles for journals, etc.).

88. Blogs provide a space for educators to share articles or other papers before publication in order to get feedback or even editing help.

89. Blogs can provide a record of what was done in class. Can’t remember how you handled this section last year? Check your blog.

90. Blogs can be used to track attendance if students are required to participate in daily discussions, etc.

91. Blogs foster objectivity if teachers use them to grade student participation. There is a physical record of the breadth and depth of the content that students contribute — rather than trying to remember what they said in class or how often they raised their hands.

92. Blogs give teachers more time. Sometimes, not everything can be fit into the lesson plan, and homework can’t stand in for instruction. Teachers can use blogs to post further instruction, additional supporting materials, and more.

93. Blogs give teachers another way to connect with students. Inspirational notes, words of encouragement, and advice can all be shared with students through a blog.

94. Teachers can model professional behavior online for students through blogs.

95. Teachers can use blogs to teach students about other cultures, and to connect students with their peers in other countries.

96. Teachers can use classroom or professional blogs to supplement their evaluation materials. They are a handy written record of yearly activity.

97. Blogs can be used to make last minute or emergency announcements to students or parents.

98. Blogs offer you the freedom to say what you want — but still not without consequences:)

99. Blogs offer unique opportunities for assessment and evaluation of students.

100. Everyone else is doing it. Really. If you’re not blogging, it almost seems as if you’re behind the times and aren’t tuned it to what’s relevant to students and to other educators.

Posted by maria magher | in Education, Technology | 1 Comment »

Top 100 green blogs for students

Aug. 15th 2010

1. Tree Hugger – This interactive environmental site has proven to be one of the top green blogs on the web, and has even been called “the green CNN.” The site posts up to 30 articles a day, and readers can use the site’s “Climate Culture Calculator” to see how much carbon they can save daily. Recommended posts: “10 of the Best College Environmental Programs in the U.S.,” “Great, Green Back-to-School Gear for College Students (Slideshow),” and “U.S. Colleges Strive for Green Credentials.”

2. Earth911 –  “Earth911.com hosts the nation’s largest recycling directory,” explains Jennifer Berry, the site’s Public and Strategic Relations Manager. “We wanted people to see how everyday events were related to the 3R’s and other aspects of a green lifestyle, and also how our readers can get involved to make a real difference in their communities. We hope that they learn that there are simple, easy and cost-effective ways to help the environment. Also, we hope that they feel empowered through learning more to take action and realize the potential positive impact even the smallest changes can make.” Recommended posts: “7 Ways to Power Up” and “Campus Cell Phone Recycling Could Expand Nationwide.”

3. Mother Nature Network – “I hope that my readers learn, contrary to what Kermit the Frog would like us to think, that it is easy being green, especially at home (or in the dorms),” explains Matt Hickman, writer for the site’s Home channel section. “While many environmentally progressive actions do require some kind of financial adjustment, there are tons of things one can do that are inexpensive and just require simple habit adjustments whether it’s using a reusable shopping bag or being more mindful of electricity consumption. And, of course, it’s not just about buying certain products or installing/using certain gadgets and gizmos – it’s about educating yourself and becoming active within your community.” Recommended posts: “10 eco-tips for college students” and “Smarter back-to-school shopping.”

4. Grist –  The majority of the posts on this site are political and cover environmental news from all over the world. The site hosts an “Ask Umbra” series where readers can send in their questions to get green tips from an expert, and there is also a teacher’s resources section where teachers or professors can learn how to use Grist in the classroom. Recommended posts: “The climate clock ticks faster, a solar campus, butter as biofuel, and 7 more green tales” and “Umbra on choosing a college.”

5. Ecorazzi – Want to save the planet and read up on celebrity gossip at the same time? The articles on this blog cover  a number of different celebrities who are using their star status to make a positive changes to the environment, such as Stella McCartney, Calvin Klein, Halle Berry, and Alicia Silverstone. Recommended posts: “Daughter Of ‘Real Housewives Of New York City’ Star Offers Green College Advice” and “Dr. Oz’s Daughter Pens Bestselling Book Promoting Planet-Friendly Diet.”

6. The Guardian – The Guardian newspaper’s Environmental Blog keeps readers updated on the latest in environmental news, green gadgets, and even politics.  Categories include nature and wildlife, climate change, carbon emissions, renewable energy, and much more. Recommended posts: “Dr Keith Pitcher’s innovation: the eco campus,” “Climate change denial? There’s an app for that,” and “How to make your school more eco-friendly.”

7. Do Your Part – This site is packed full of tips on how to maintain a greener lifestyle and save money at the same time. Their content has also been published in over 70 media outlets in the U.S. as well as ten international media outlets. The site’s founder Terri Bennett was the first female Chief Meteorologist on television in the Carolinas, and hosts the Do Your Part’s daily “Green Dish” videos. Recommended posts: “Make Cash With Old Printer Cartridges” and “A Greener Dorm Room.”

8. Planet Green – Besides writing numerous articles on environmental news and how to live a greener life, Planet Green is also a 24-hour eco-lifestyle television network, and the sister site of TreeHugger.com. Since the site was launched in 2008 it has produced more than 250 hours of “original green lifestyle programming.” Recommended posts: “10 Ways to Promote Green Campus Activism,” “Unemployed College Grads: Stay Green and Save Money With These Tips,” and “Rent College Texts, Save Money, Resources.”

9. Eartheasy –  Eartheasy has been referenced in An Inconvenient Truth, Businessweek, Newsweek, and several books on sustainable living.. They also provide content for The Weather Network and NASA’s Quest program, as well as municipal and school websites. Recommended posts: “One-Pot Cooking,” “Green Gold: the hidden savings of green living,” and “Saving electricity at home has a bigger impact than you might think.”

10. World Changing –  This site has been referenced in numerous publications, such as The New York Times and the Guardian, and claims to help bring awareness to international issues like refugee aid, renewable energy, and how to maintain a greener lifestyle. The site was also named as one of the top 15 environmental websites in the world by TIME magazine, and has won multiple awards for their content. Recommended posts: “Training the Green Collar Workforce: A Role for Community Colleges” and “New School Sustainability: Majors Making a Difference.”

11. Green Economy Post – This unique site covers the latest in political and environmental news, and helps bring awareness to readers on how they can make positive changes to their lifestyles and the world that they live in. Categories include green jobs and careers, scholarships, green recruiting, green marketing, and campus sustainability. Recommended posts: “Campus Sustainability Programs: Putting Universities at the Forefront of Green Movement,” “Getting Scholarships to Pay for Your Green MBA is Not as Hard as You Think – Part 1” and “Who’s Tweeting Sustainable Brands ‘10 – See Our Top 85 SB’10 Tweeters List.”

12. The Green Guide – National Geographic’s environmental blog covers a wide range of different categories, such as energy-saving tips for your home and garden, green parenting, green tips on travel and transportation, and much more. The site also has a “Buying Guides” section where readers can get tips on where to find environmentally friendly air conditioners, bikes, laptops, or refrigerators. Recommended posts: “Mobile Apps Help Find Sustainable Seafood” and “What Is Your Water Footprint?

13. Planetsave – Planetsave’s editor Zach Shahan has a passion for exposing the “constantly evolving environmental problems we face” as well as their “large-scale solutions.” Through the articles, readers can learn about the latest in environmental news, or how to “incorporate greener actions and thinking into their lives.” Recommended posts: “Greenest Cell Phone Companies” and “Global Warming: Is It True? [10-Minute Video Introduction]

14. ecomii – The numerous categories on this blog touch on easy or money-saving tips, herbal medicines, as well as healthy living tips for parents and investors. The site also has an ecopedia, green dictionary, science dictionary, and science encyclopedia. The majority of the topics on this blog are usually health-related, and cover a variety of different topics such as organic recipes, eco-friendly products, and even acupuncture. Recommended posts: “Green Computing” and “Passive Cooling: Using Physics to Ventilate and Cool Your Home.”

15. Eco-Libris - “We started this blog because we wanted to provide book lovers as well as publishers and authors with resources and information on how to make reading more sustainable,” writes Raz Godelnik, CEO of Eco-Libris. “We also use the blog to promote books that are printed in an environmentally sound manner and explore and new challenges such as how really green e-books are. We hope readers, including college students who are large consumer of books, will become more aware of the environmental issues we explore and discuss on the blog.” Recommended posts: “Is E-Reading Really Greener?” and “10 Ways Geolocation is Changing the World.”

16. Student Switch-Off – Even though it isn’t necessarily a blog, this interactive site has environmental quizzes and articles on the latest in green news. Students from various UK-based universities can participate in the Student Switch Off campaign or send in personal pictures to receive prizes for their green deeds. Recommended posts: “Student Switch Off exceeds carbon saving target” and “The Student Switch Off passes 700 tonnes.”

17. The Good Human – Since 2006, this site has published over 1,800 posts which touch on both environmental and political issues. The site’s author states that he hopes readers will learn how to live a greener lifestyle without “being made to feel guilty or like they were not doing enough.”  Recommended posts: “Products You Can Share With Others To Reduce Consumption And Waste,” “16 Ways To Reuse Old Coffee Grounds,” and “12 Reasons To Stop Drinking Bottled Water.”

18. Cool Tribe – On this site readers can learn how to “green your finance,” “green your fashion,” “green your brain,” “green your pets” and much more. The authors describe their blog as an “eco-ethical online community” because users can share green news and tips, and post their own pictures and videos.

19. Green Student U – “College students are an important target audience because the habits and world views that they establish today will provide them with the tools they need for their future,” as written on Green Student U’s website. “By informing students of up-to-date ecological concerns and providing the advice they need to tackle these concerns, Green Student U will help advance the green movement for both current and future generations.” Recommended posts: “How to Find an Eco-friendly Campus” and “10 Ways to Make Your School a Green Campus.”

20. Fake Plastic Fish –  The sole mission behind this blog is to educate readers on the overwhelming amount of toxic chemicals and products entering our oceans, or how to reduce the use of plastic in our everyday lives. Get tips on everything from plastic-free living, organic towels, re-usable grocery bags, organic snacks, or how to store produce without plastic. Recommended posts: “In Hell, they drink Le Froglet wine in individual plastic wine glasses” and “Toxic Food Packaging Labels.”

21. The Eco Diva – Because every diva needs fashionable clothes and beauty products, this site updates readers on eco-friendly cosmetics, fashion and accessories. The site’s author also writes reviews for the products on her site, and readers can submit questions for the weekly “Ask The EcoDiva!” series. Recommended posts: “Fast, Easy and Cheap DIY Recipes For Face, Body And Hair” and “Top 5 Benefits to Using Eco Friendly Beauty Products.”

22. ecofriend – On this site readers can get updated on the latest gadgets, products, technology, and lifestyle trends. The majority of the articles  focus on environmentally friendly vehicles, such as vegetable oil-powered buses, or solar-powered gadgets. Recommended posts: “High-tech, green backpack for the Campus of the Future,” “10 eco-friendly classrooms and schools teaching green lifestyle,” and “Solar-powered Transit Shelter promises safety to both occupants and environment.”

23. Toxic Beauty – “I started Toxic Beauty Blog to let more people know about this issue so they can make safer cosmetic choices for themselves and their family,” explains blogger Robin Adler. “I hope readers of my blog will learn about which toxic ingredients to avoid and the ill effects they can produce as well as safer, organic alternatives they can happily use. Hopefully, younger readers, such as high school or college students can learn how to go green at an earlier age so they can reduce or even avoid health problems from using toxic products in the future.” Recommended posts: “The Story of Cosmetics” and “A Gift From the Bees.”

24. EnviroGadget - “I hope that readers will be inspired to seek out energy saving/water saving alternatives when purchasing gadgets, or at least consider buying gadgets that have a strong eco-friendly aspect to them,” writes eco blogger Dan Harrison. “For students, I’d like to inspire them to create more eco-friendly products, both gadgets and non-gadgets. There’s a massive market out there, shown by the huge following of Envirogadget. Therefore there’s the potential to make a great career out of green products and services.” Recommended posts: “Juicebar Pocket Solar-Powered iPhone and iPod Charger” and “Battery-Less Hydro Powered Calculator.”

25. Sustainability at Harvard – Students and professors from all over the world can learn a thing or two from Massachusetts’ Harvard University Office for Sustainability’s blog. “The Sustainability at Harvard website serves as a hub for efforts to make Harvard a greener place,” explains Lev Rickards. “Faculty, students and staff contribute to stories about these efforts and share what they have learned with the whole campus and the wider community. Recommended posts: “Students’ environmental involvement on Youtube,” “Setting Up Waste Disposal Facilities in Labs” and “Web-based Display Tracks Campus Energy Use.”

26. The Greenists -The articles on this blog cover everything from green beauty products, organic food and liquids, or how you and your pet can live a greener lifestyle. The site is written by multiple authors, some of whom work in the educational field, and inspire students and teachers to think of new ways to increase their energy efficiency. Recommended posts: “10 Environmental Studies Programs You Should Know About” and “Book Review – Ten Ways to Change the World in your Twenties.”

27. Civil Eats – “Civil Eats is a site with over 40 diverse contributors covering food and environmental health from the ground up, to the policy coming out of Washington,” writes Paula Crossfield, the site’s Managing Editor. “We hope to provide a place that anyone can join in the conversation, from those new to the issues facing the food system to the experienced policy pros.” Recommended posts: “Feeding College Students One Garden at a Time,” “Finding a Farm Apprenticeship” and “School Gardens Across the Nation, and a Resource List for Starting Your Own.”

28. Ethicurean – All of the posts on this blog cover green recipes, eco-friendly food products, and how to grow your own fruit and vegetables. The Ethicurean has been referenced in Real Simple magazine as one of “The Best Blogs” in 2008, the Washington Post, the Sydney Morning Herald, and was even recommended by Andrew Zimmern, a food writer and host on the Travel Channel. Recommended posts: “Students slice and dice for a better future in ‘Pressure Cooker’ documentary” and “Freeze! Avoid food waste and save time with these savvy tips.

29. Eco-Chick –  Winner of the 2010 “Best of Green” award by Treehugger.com, the articles cover everything related to women’s environmental issues such as the latest in eco fashion and natural beauty products. The posts also touch on numerous fashion designers as well as locally produced organic cosmetics, creams, and lotions. Recommended posts: “Profits Before People: 7 of the World’s Most Irresponsible Companies” and “Got Environmental Issues? The Next Generation’s On It with Solutions-Oriented Projects Galore.”

30. Life the Green Way – “I had a very ‘green’ upbringing, splitting my time between our family farm in rural Alabama and Birmingham,” writes Elena T. White, founder and author of Life the Green Way. “I learned how to waste as little as possible and how to grow, cultivate and harvest fruits and vegetables.  I recycled aluminum cans (in the city) for spending money.  I started the blog to share information with mainstreamers to show them how to live a more sustainable lifestyle. I hope that readers will see how easy (and cost-effective) it is to live a greener life and how even small changes can make a big difference.” Recommended posts: “Feeling Drained? Vampire Energy Can Suck the Life From Your Utility Bill!” and “8 Easy Ways to Save Green.”

31. Enviroblog – This award-winning blog updates readers on the various popular products that contain toxic chemicals. Gets tip on how to avoid these toxins by reading the site’s articles on eco-friendly sunscreen, infant formulas, mineral-based make-up, and much more. Recommended posts: “Test your knowledge of cosmetics safety: 8 myths debunked,” “EWG’s Tips to avoid BPA exposure” and “Toxic parties? You bet.

32.  It’s Getting Hot in Here – The authors call their site “the voice of a growing movement” and a “community media project.”  The articles consist of the latest in political and environmental news, as well as student and/or youth leaders who aim to “stop global warming” and to “build a more just and sustainable future.”Recommended posts: “Jack Black: Clean Energy Hero” and “2010: The year nature struck back?

33. 365 Ways to Go Green – “I was doing a lot of talking about “going green,” but what was I doing?” writes eco blogger Mike Lieberman. “So I posed a challenge to myself to perform one simple green act a day for a year and to document them to hold myself accountable. These are simple green acts that you can also do without rearranging your daily lives.” Recommended posts: “Day 342: Turned Off Faucet While Washing Hands,” “Day 26: Used Shower Water for Plants,” Day 315: Used Vinegar to Clean Oven,” and “Day 153: Set Screen Saver To A Black Screen.”

34. Cheap Like Me – “I have been trying to live an enjoyable life — and not a deprived life — since I was in college, when an environmental science class changed the way I saw the world,” explains Susanna Donato. “I initially started blogging about my methods to save money while still living “rich,” and as time went on I realized that many of my frugal habits, like buying things used, fixing existing things, and buying the most delicious produce and meats — which often happen to be raised organically and locally — also have a lower environmental impact than living conventionally.” Recommended posts: “Check in to keep electricity bills low” and “10 ways to save money while saving waste.”

35. Green-Talk – “I have been turning greener for over a decade mostly due to my children who have learning disabilities and allergies,” writes author Anna Hackman. “I was (and still am) convinced that the products we eat and use [have] caused their disabilities and allergies.” Anna hopes to inspire her readers not only to lead a more sustainable lifestyle, but to also reconsider their shopping habits: “The future and our Planet will be in their hands. If they buy fair trade, organic and environmentally friendly products, then more and more companies will change their ways to accommodate the market.” Recommended posts: “Drink Organic Beer Responsibly” and “Organic Vodka, Starting From Square One.”

36. Groovy Green Livin – “I have made some pretty substantial lifestyle changes in my own life over the past 12 years, [and] I have been inspired by the positive results that have come from those changes,” writes blogger Lori Alper. “After so many years of research and educating myself I wanted to share this information with others. It is my hope that my readers pick up a thing or two from my posts that they can carry into their own personal lives. Ultimately, I would hope they would pass the information on to others.” Recommended posts: “Top 12 Fruits and Vegetables to Buy Organic” and “Send Your Kids Back to School the Eco-Friendly Way.”

37. Organic on the Green –  This award-winning blog is tailored for university students, professors and administrators; and its mission is to “feed the organic revolution in campus dining.”  The two authors are both students at Colgate University: Shae Frydenlund is majoring in Environmental Geography, and Nina Merrill worked as an intern with the Communications Department at the Organic Trade Association (OTA). Recommended posts: “Organic on a Budget” and “Organic Farming for Credit.”

38. Vegan Beauty Review – “I really wanted to show the world that not all vegans are crunchy granola hippies, and that we can be girlie and glam while following a compassionate lifestyle,” explains author Sunny Subramanian. “I want my readers to learn how important it is to buy cruelty-free, natural and environmentally-friendly beauty products. Animal testing is useless and cruel (and NOT required by law), and most conventional beauty products contain so much toxic crap anyway, that the only logical and ethical choice is to buy clean cosmetics.” Recommended posts: “There’s no shortage of vegan Halloween candy!” and “Make Your Own Body Scrub at Home.”

39. Big Green Purse – “I write my blog to help people make green choices that make sense and that won’t cost them a fortune,” explains Diane MacEachern. “That we should all consume less; that we should choose the most environmentally friendly products and services available; and that when we shift our spending to safer goods, we create incentives to company to reduce pollution and save energy. The way we spend our money matters – no matter how much or how little we spend.” Recommended posts: “Five Steps to a Greener, Cleaner Drain” and “Clean Drinking Glasses with Toothpaste.”

40. Climate Edu – From the National Wildlife Federation, the authors of Climate Edu educate readers on how colleges and universities from all over the world are adapting to greener practices. This site is a blog-version of a bi-monthly online newsletter which provides readers with various resources, book reviews, tools, and editorials. Recommended posts: “Are Green Jobs Programs Justified?,” “Forestry Schools Trade Pat Equations for Critical Thought,” “Community Colleges Step Up to Train Clean Energy Workers” and “Psychology and Social Science Inform Climate Campaigns.”

41. iGreen Spot –  The majority of the posts on this blog cover the latest in green technology, transportation, design, and concept. Categories include architecture, home and kitchen appliances, product reviews, solar energy, and much more. Recommended posts: “Conserve Insight: Allows You To Save On Energy As Well As The Environment” and “Love Coffee? Then Love The Eco Kettle.”

42. EcoStreet – EcoStreet’s articles are directed towards a younger audience who want to stay updated on the latest environmental news and gadgets. As written on the site’s webpage: “Walking the green walk can be a rich and rewarding experience…That’s why we don’t rap others over the knuckles or berate them for choosing the lifestyles they do, but rather strive to inspire simplicity and creativity as we walk the green path ourselves as ambassadors of the earth.” Recommended posts: “7 groovy handmade recycled gifts to make & give” and “Play It Again Sam: Alternatively Powered Radios and Players.”

43. Haute Nature –  Author Holland Seydel works as an oil painter, sculptor, and furniture/architectural designer, and writes about the latest in eco-friendly home furnishings, decor, design, and products. Readers get updated on the latest  eco-art, medicinal herbs, recyclable materials and clothing, and much more. Recommended posts: “paper work: recycled magazines” and “indigenous designs: eco fashion.”

44. Re-nest – This site is a great resource for all you artsy students looking for environmentally friendly ways to redecorate their dorm rooms or apartments. The articles also provide tips on eco-friendly products you can use in your home, how to recycle your old clothing, and architectural designs from all over the world. Recommended posts: “How To Make a Homemade Wasp Trap” and “49 Creative Reuse Ideas That Will Inspire & Surprise You.”

45. Politics of the Plate – ”Unlike many other political issues, well-informed consumers can actually make changes occur through their buying habits,” explains Barry Estabrook. “Note the increase in local food at some campus cafeterias, college students were key to getting chain restaurants to agree to pay tomato pickers fairer wages, food service companies such as Compass have become very aware of food issues because of the influence of college students they provide food to.” Recommended posts: “Newsbites: Wine Drinkers to the Rescue–Popping Corks Saves Endangered Forests; Shrimp on Prozac (No, They’re not Depressed About the Oil Spill); There’s Oil in Them There Cereal Boxes” and “Newsbites: Oil Enters the Gulf Food Chain; Ohio Farm Aminals Break Free of Crates; Undocumented Workers Tell Americans to “Take Our Jobs!” Farmers Turn up Noses at Monsanto’s GM Soybeans and Corn.”

46. The Girlie Girl Army –   Blogger Chloé Jo is a “NYC local celebrity,” and was named as one of the Hot 100 by HEEB Magazine. She was also the host of Celebrity Dirt on RiverWired, and has made cameos on several popular television shows. She describes her award-winning site as a “Glamazon Guide to Green Living” or “‘Sex in the City’ with brains and a pit bull.” Recommended posts: “New Vegan Recipe Finder iPhone App” and “How To Really, Truly Save A Dime.”

47. Climate Neutral Campus – From the American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment (ACUPCC), this site serves as a great resource for college and university students, faculty, and even IT professionals. The articles also include case studies of various universities who have transformed themselves into environmentally friendly campuses. Recommended posts: “Visions of Sustainability in 2050,” “Minority-Serving Institutions: Harbingers of Education for Sustainability” and “Education for Sustainability Blueprint.”

48. The Green Life – The articles on this site not only cover the latest in environmental news, they also touch on various eco-friendly products, or how to adopt an earth-friendly lifestyle. There are also numerous articles covering the latest in environmental literature and films, green fashion, and home design. Recommended posts: “Share Some Sugar: A Site to Reduce Consumerism Through Sharing,” “Green Your School” and “Organic Coffee Causes College Buzz.”

49. Eco Vegan Gal - “I want to show readers how easy and rewarding it is to make changes,” writes author Whitney Lauritsen. “My main message is one of simplicity – I believe that the best way to save the environment is to reduce excess from our lives and focus more on necessity. However, it is important to convey that being green doesn’t equal a bland life – it can be fun and exciting, and my goal is to show my readers how to achieve that.” Recommended posts:  ”How to Gain Weight on the Vegan Diet,” ”Easy Vegan Meals in Less Than 15 Minutes” and “Way Better Baked Mac ‘n’ Cheese.”

50. Urban Organic Gardener – Eco blogger Mike Lieberman, (also known as CanarsieBK around the web, and author of “365 Ways to Go Green”), entertains readers with his vegetable gardening  journey. Although most of the articles provide tips on how to maintain your own garden, some posts also touch on some of the humorous trials and tribulations that go along with planting dill seeds, tomato plants, and much more. Recommended posts: “Is Growing Food in a Plastic Container Safe?” and “Testing Soil Amendments: Manure Tea vs Compost.”

51. People and Planet –   “Our blog is written by a range of young people actively involved in the People & Planet network,” writes Louise Hazan.  “We are the largest network of student groups in the UK campaigning on world poverty, human rights and the environment. People & Planet’s Grassroots Blog aims to help young people share their opinions, perspectives and campaign ideas with others to inspire them to take action on the biggest issue facing our generation: climate change.” Recommended posts: “Scoop a bargain: the rise of student food coops” and “Where Are The Facts? Climate Change And The Science Of What We Don’t Know…

52. Ecosize Me – “I was inspired to write Ecosize Me because I wanted to share my passion for environmental education and environmental conservation,” writes Tracy Purrenhage is also co-owner of Earth-Smart LCC, a company which provides environmental educational programs. “I really hope our readers will learn to appreciate and respect our natural environment; realizing that even though we live in an instantly-gratifying, convenient and disposable society, that living and being green is truly easy and can be accomplished with small, deliberate steps.” Recommended posts: “Are We Too Lazy to Save the Planet?” and ”

53. The Jew and the Carrot –  ”The idea [of our blog] is that it be the center of any goings-on in the New Jewish Food movement which is centered around sustainability and connected to food justice, environmentalism, etc.,” explains author Mara Friedman. “As for college students, I think it’s a great resource to learn about “current events” in the sustainability ‘world.’  I think another thing that college students can gather is that choices matter, even if you don’t have the money or time as a student to buy all organic straight-from-the-farm produce, you can still make sustainable choices and contribute to the green movement simply by your actions.” Recommended posts: “Raw Milk-Why Mess With Udder Perfection?” and “Students on the rise: ‘lets get CoFed‘”

54. EcoGeek – EcoGeek’s founder Hank Green started EcoGeek as a class assignment when he was in graduate school. Since then, he has appeared on Planet Green’s nightly news show “G Word,” and has been featured in various publications such as Mental Floss Magazine and The New York Times. Recommended posts: “How Green is Your Bracket?,” “Colleges Look to Cut Down on Paper with Kindle” and “Europe Will Be Powered By Saharan Sun in Five Years.”

55. Inhabitat –  Readers of this site can get updated on the latest green architecture and design, products, fashion, and art. Creator Jill Fehrenbacher is a designer from NYC who has a passion for “investigating emerging trends in product, interior, and architectural design.” Recommended posts: “America’s First Bookless Library Coming Soon to Texas,” “Stanford Scientists Create the World’s First Peel-and-Stick Solar Cells” and “Ingenious 14 Year Old Invents Solar Powered Water Purification System for the Developing World.”

56. Let’s be Green Together – Cathy Herard started her blog to document the ways her and her family were saving money by going green. Because she is a vegetarian, the majority of the posts cover various easy and cheap recipes as seen on her “Meatless Monday” series. Recommended posts: “Tips for a Greener and more Simple Bookshelf,” “Greener Living is A Good Habit” and “Healthy Fruit and Yogurt Smoothie.”

57. Australian Youth Climate Coalition – Since 2009, the AYCC has been involved in several environmental projects such as Power Shift, Australia’s first national youth climate summit, Youth Decide, the world’s first national youth vote on climate change, and many more. “Young people in particular will be impacted by climate change and it is important there is a way to discuss those issues,” writes National Director Amanda McKenzie. “I hope readers will take inspiration from the blog to take action on climate change and sustainability.” Recommended posts: “UQ Climate group visit Climate Skeptics” and “What do sustainability, Asia, and Indigenous Australia have in common?

58. Campus Ecology – “[We were] inspired to start writing an environmental blog to serve as another outlet to provide resources and insight to college and university communities about current best practices in campus greening, and climate action,” writes Courtney Cochran. The Campus Ecology Program Assistant. “We hope that our readers will gain perspective on how to initiate change on their campuses and be climate action leaders within their colleges and universities.” Recommended posts: “LeadAmerica Students Get a Lesson in Environmental Leadership” and “Campaigning for credit.”

59. No Impact Man – Eco blogger Colin Beavan writes on various environmental issues that are making the headlines, specifically the BP oil spill. He also released a book and a film, both titled “No Impact Man,” and has been described as “a liberal schlub who got tired of listening to himself complain about the world without ever actually doing anything about it.” Recommended posts: “The Senate decides to do nothing about climate change… and what you can do” and “Denison University students go No Impact!

60. Talking on Common Ground – “I created Talking on Common Ground to address the practical side of living greener, but every so often the topics stray from just living greener directly,” explains Kelly Barrett, who is also author of Local Foodie Fight. “It was designed to be a bit broader so I had wiggle room to talk about issues that interested me. I hope that [college students] learn to be critical thinkers, to see from both sides of an issue to understand that there is a practical end of living green that must be sustained or else that product or service or way of life is just not going to be realistic for the long-term.” Recommended posts: “7 Attitudes to Lose” and “7 ways to green your life while saving money.”

61. Project Laundry List – Alexander Lee was inspired to start his blog after the New York Times’ “Room for Debate” blog wrote an article on green laundry tips which received numerous comments from readers. “We are partnering with Seventh Generation and they, too, find that there is a great response to topics related to laundry,” he explains. Readers of this site can incorporate these green laundry tips in their everyday lives, whether it be at their campus gym or their dorm room. Recommended posts: “Washing with cold water has a bigger impact than you might think, says new study” and “Drying in Winter.”

62. Alternative Consumer – “At Altcon we try to introduce people to products and services that are produced in a more sustainable, eco-friendly fashion than many mainstream products that can be poorly made, mass produced in places like China, or disposable landfill-bound junk,” explains Maureen O’Connor. “Consumers need to look at a products entire lifecycle when making a purchase.  Search out the ‘greener’ alternatives which can often include not buying anything at all, making it yourself, or re-using, or upcycling something that already exists.” Recommended posts: “5 Easy Ways to Go Green” and “Top 3 Green Graduation Gifts.”

63. Glamology –  ”Out of my own search for natural products and education about the beauty industry, I created Glamology to help educate others on the dangers of conventional skin care products and to help people make healthy and responsible lifestyle choices,” explains Charmaine Leah Cianciullo, who works as a professional esthetician and skin therapist. “The average adult uses 9 personal care/cosmetic products daily and is exposed to over 168 chemicals each day. What I really hope readers learn is that we all need to be more aware about what we buy and what products we use.” Recommended posts: “Top 10 Safest Sunscreens – 2010 EWG Sunscreen Guide” and “Tips to Green Your Beauty Routine.”

64. Inside Urban Green –  This blog covers everything plant-related: from indoor plants, plant maintenance, gardening, plantations, and fresh food produce. Categories include artificial lightening, balcony gardening, botanical gardens, climate change, plant furniture, and recycling. Recommended posts: “McGill University Edible Campus,” “A Green Kitchen Can be Now” and “Going to School for Landscaping.”

65. Condo Blues –  “I grew up in a family that didn’t waste things and we fixed items that were broken instead of buying new. Green living is nothing new to me,” writes Lisa Nelsen-Woods. “I started Condo Blues to share those green living tips and tricks I learned to give others several options for doing the same green thing. That you don’t need a movie star budget or live in one of the green hot spot areas to live a more environmentally friendly life. And if you’re trying to save money, doing it the green way more often than not, is going to save you money too.” Recommended posts: “10 Ways for College Students to Go Green on the Cheap” and “How to Identify BPA Free Plastics the Easy Way.”

66. Green Inspiration –  This blog is written by two Moms who were “inspired” to start an environmental blog after falling in love with a bag made out of recycled candy wrappers. Besides writing articles on eco-friendly bags, other posts cover topics like nutrition, recycling tips, and beauty products. Recommended posts: “The Tide is Turning to Method,” “Paper Avalanche” and “Greening Your School Supply Shopping.”

67. The Cheap and Choosy – This ESL teacher educates readers on how to live a greener lifestyle and save money at the same time. The majority of the posts cover product giveaways, how to simplify your grocery list, and numerous nutritional recipes. Recommended posts: “Toiletry Tips Part Three: Adios Facial Scrub!,” “Switchin’ the Kitchen to Cloth – Part Two” and “Two Toiletry Tips-Little Ways to Save.”

68. Campus Green Builder – This site has a primary focus on how universities and colleges can adopt greener, architectural designs for their campuses. It also provides numerous case studies as well as announcements of campus sustainability events, conferences, workshops, summits, webinars, and courses. Recommended posts: “Preserving history with building green practices,” “The Virtual Green Movement” and “Howard U Bookstore Employs Go Green Marketing Strategy.”

69. The Discerning Brute – “The Discerning Brute has a lot to do with reclaiming manliness in the sense that the popular gender definition of ‘male’ is very along the ‘Brute’ lines, and being ‘Discerning’ from both an aesthetic and ethical persective is often viewed as feminine and weak,” writes Joshua Katcher. “With my blog, I am trying to showcase that you can be a man and still care about stuff. A protector, defender, hero is the man of the 21st century. Anything and everything pertaining to an ethically-handsome lifestyle for men who enjoy food, clothing, art, and culture.” Recommended posts: “Meat Is (Still) Murder” and “Blazers and Suits for Gentle Men.”

70. Do the Green Thing – “The main purpose of our blog is to act as an ‘inspiration feed’ to readers,” writes author Katherine Hui. “Our hope is that people see this and feel compelled to get involved/start something/change their behaviour/share with others/ be inspired…Being an environmental charity, maintaining a blog is something that we as an organisation feel is important for engaging with our readers and for showcasing new ideas and current discussions and debate within the environmental realm.” Recommended posts: “5 things you probably didn’t know you could rent” and “A view from NASA.”

71. James’ Blog – Author Dr. James O. Jenkins works as a Senior Lecturer in Environmental Management at the University of Hertfordshire in the UK. He was inspired to start a blog to educate his students on environmental issues, the latest in politics…and Noam Chomsky. Recommended posts: “Why we disagree about climate change,” “Is Geography the New History?” and “Toxic Fuels.”

72. Green Beanie – “I started as a green home and lifestyle consultant a few years ago and the blog was a natural way to get answers to friends and clients about how to live a greener lifestyle,” writes Caroline Howell. “My interest in the field came from concern over the correlations between health and the environment, after my mother passed away from breast cancer and my son developed asthma. That being green doesn’t have to be a complete overhaul of your life or home, and that little changes can make a difference.” Recommended posts: “Getting your school into green” and “A Greener College Experience.”

73. Getting to Green – “If there’s one thing I hope students will get from my posts, it’s that their institution probably isn’t as monolithic as they probably experience it to be,” states  G. Rendell, an administrator at an American university. “…sustainability isn’t just about the environment, or even ecology.  It’s about every single thing that we need for existence.  And that our offspring (and their offspring, and their offspring’s offspring) will need in order to lead happy, healthy, useful lives.  Sure, a lot of that comes from the environment (air, water, temperate climate, food, raw materials, waste processing services), but some of it’s just about how we treat each other and ourselves.  The ever-increasing income gap in this country, for example, is an example of a non-ecological pattern that’s totally unsustainable.” Recommended posts: “A slice of bread – Why companies aren’t greener.”

74. Earth Promise –  The goals of this site are to “provide an easy way for people to make, track, and keep promises about changes that will benefit the environment,” and “connect people with others who share the same vision for change.” Users can also post their own “earth promise” and share it with the other readers on the site.

75. Students of Environmental Action Coalition –  The Student Environmental Action Coalition (SEAC) is run by students who strive to “uproot environmental injustices through action and education.” Since 1988, SEAC has been involved in the “No Coal Days of Action,” “No War No Warming,” and has started various recycling programs at over 200 high schools and college campuses in America.

76. Eco to the People – “I was inspired to start writing my blog in 2009 when I had been laid off for the second time in a year,” explains Heather O’Neill. “I was afraid that being out of work would limit my efforts to live a more green lifestyle and then eco-friendly products would be priced out of my reach. What I learned, and what I hope my readers learn from reading Eco to the People, is that living a greener lifestyle is possible at any income level. I also hope to teach people that being environmentally-friendly is about progress, not perfection. Even small steps in the right direction make a difference at the end of the day.” Recommended  posts: “Teens Green the Dorm Room” and “Pump the Savings, Dump the Waste.”

77. Recycled Fashion –  “I have been fortunate enough to travel to many developing countries and experienced first-hand how developing countries, and their environment are affected by our consumer driven society,” writes author Erica Louise. “Fashion is not limited to the high street, and fashion does not have to be unaffordable. Style can be created from the abundance of threads available in circulation. Shop second hand and refashion your existing garments to create those special recycled fashion wardrobe piece, not only will you be unique, but you will be saving a heap of money, which is particularly important for a student!” Recommended posts: “Make your own undies!” and “From jeans to bag.”

78. Life, Love, Green – “I wanted to share my experiences and the practical ways I found to be green in my everyday life,” writes eco blogger Amber. “Being green doesn’t have to take over your whole life there are many easy things you can do. But be warned once you start and find out how easy it is you will become addicted. Being green can also save you money and help reduce stress by de-cluttering your house.” Recommended posts: “Natural Soap!” and “Green your drive-Take the Bus.”

79. My Recycled Bags – “It’s rewarding to me to help others create beautiful and useful things from trash,” writes blogger Cindy. “…I started my blog and began making all kinds of things using plastic bags, old jeans, VCR tape, cassette tapes, plastic packaging, rags, t-shirts etc. I’ve posted a few green and frugal ideas in hopes of helping others learn how to do things with recycled materials, [and] I offer all my patterns and tutorials free to everyone.”  Recommended posts: “Camo Plarn Ditty Bag” and “Recycled Paper Bag Mailer.”

80. Commerce with a Conscience – “There are a lot of great menswear sites out there, but few of them ever delve into where the products are made, or what they’re made out of (all things that I take into consideration when I make a purchase),” writes the site’s founder Brad Bennett. “There are also a lot of “eco-fashion” sites, but very few of them have an aesthetic similar to my own, and none of them focus specifically on men’s clothing. So, I started CWAC as sort of a best of both worlds. All of the items are on-trend design-wise, but also on-point social responsibility-wise. It requires a hell of a lot of research, but I’m up for it.” Recommended posts: “Apolis Activism Market Bag” and ”Archival Clothing Rucksack.”

81. UNC Sustaina-Blog –  The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill started their sustainability blog to ” advance the triple bottom line of ecological integrity, economic prosperity and social equity on campus.” It may not be the fanciest blog in the world, but UNC students can get updated on the latest environmentally-friendly courses, programs, and events, as well as any Carolina-related media mentions. Recommended posts: “Science teachers to explore future of electricity at UNC workshop” and “‘Eats 101’ Course to Feed Sustainability Venture.”

82. Ecologue: The Oregon State University Sustainability Blog – Even though it is written specifically for students in Oregon; through this site others in the educational field can find inspiring ways to bring green ideas and changes to their own campuses. “It seemed like an appropriate way to reach out in a less formal way than through a traditional website,” writes Brandon Trelstad, who work as the Sustainability Coordinator at OSU. “It is a good conversation space. I hope they will get a sense of what we’re doing, not through just information sharing, but a little bit of insight into how we do what we do, and what attitude we have about our work in this less formal setting.” Recommended posts: “Testing computer power management software” and “Car sharing coming to OSU.”

83. Welcome to the Good Life –  ”I attended a wonderful environmental studies program in college at Wisconsin’s UW-Madison Nelson Institute, and I wanted to share what I was learning,” ,” writes eco blogger Jenny Lynes. “Now, I keep it up as I take that knowledge and bring it into my adult life (I just graduated this May). I hope readers will realize that there are fun, cheap, and easy ways to ‘be green.’ Recommended posts: “Simple Pleasures- College Edition,” “Eco-Facts Labels: Rapanui Genius” and “Why I don’t eat fast food.”

84. Big Dreams for a Simple Life –  ”I wanted to chronicle my family’s journey of learning to live a self sustainable life,” explains Ginger Bergemann. “We want to exchange our life in the suburbs for a more simple life raising our own food and finding natural sources of energy. I hope my readers will be inspired to take the leap into green and simple living. They may or may not try the same things I do, but as long as we each make an effort to live a more sustainable life, our earth will benefit from it and last for future generations.” Recommended posts: “Saving Green” and “Getting Crafty with Old T-shirts.”

85. Budget Confessions –  ”I was inspired to start writing a blog with an environmental slant when I realized how much the environment affects other areas of my family’s lives, like our finances,” explains eco blogger Cate. “For example, using environmentally-friendly cleaning products (like vinegar and baking soda) is much cheaper than buying chemical-laden products to do the same job…I use things that are tried and true: vinegar and baking soda, a Rubbermaid compost bin…Being environmentally-friendly often means saving money and helping your community to boot.” Recommended posts: “Frugal Meatless Meals: Bean Tacos” and “Simple gift giving.”

86. Local Foodie Fight – “I became interested in sustainable agriculture a few years back when I started going to farmers markets,” explains Kelly Barrett, who is also the author of “Talking on Common Ground.”  “Then, in the senior year of my undergrad at American University, I took an independent study on sustainable food systems and decided to keep a blog in addition to writing a final report and doing readings…The idea is that college students could learn that eating locally is not difficult, and can actually be affordable, delicious, and much healthier.” Recommended posts: “What many environmentalists haven’t learned: economics says personal action drives change” and “Communicating the benefits of urban agriculture while innovation grows.”

87. Citizen Green – “My son, Joel Paschal, is an environmental activist against single-use plastic,” explains the blog’s author, who is now a retired high school biology teacher. “His activities has inspired me to write a blog about reducing our use of plastic.I hope my readers are motivated to stop using single-use plastics.”

88. The Harvard Community Garden –  “The blog is written to raise awareness of the Garden Project at Harvard, and also to provide those interested in the garden and environmental issues with a source of relevant news,” explains intern Emily Osborne. “We hope readers will learn how feasible, fun, beneficial and rewarding urban organic gardening is, and also hope to spark their interest in issues revolving around food access, environmental health, and agriculture.” Recommended posts: “Video Cooking Demo: Chef Johnny D. of the All Star Sandwich Bar cooks at the Harvard Farmer’s Market” and “Urban Gardening vs. Rural Gardening, Part 1.”

89. The Garden of Eating -  “After my son was born, I started to focus more on things of a chemical nature since I realized that we’re bombarded with potentially toxic substances all the time in the most seemingly unlikely places (shampoo, toothpaste, dish soap, air fresheners, tupper wares, canned foods, etc.) and the idea of exposing this tiny infant to all those chemicals was kind of scary,” writes Eve Fox. “What we eat, where we get our food, what dish soap we use, how much garbage we produce, whether we buy bottled water or just drink good old tap water — these may seem like small things but they are all part of the bigger picture.” Recommended posts: “Oxo Sink Strainer – Gift From The Kitchen Gods” and “The Edible Schoolyard.”

90. Going Green with Noah – Author Melanie Melugin started writing her blog after she became pregnant with her first child, and she was inspired to journal her experiences on how to live a healthier and more eco-friendly live. “I hope that all my readers, including college students, will find some inspiration to take the baby steps that are necessary to make a true difference in their own lives,” she writes. “These changes, no matter how small, make huge impacts in our environment.  We only have one Earth – we must learn to sustain what we have.” Recommended posts: “Terracycle – Sell your Trash? – Giveaway” and “Greener Pup: A Story and a Review.”

91. Family Organic – Eco blogger Sara Simeral was inspired to live a healthier lifestyle after reading The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan, and watching the internationally recognized documentary Food Inc. “I felt like I needed to make a change, but I wasn’t sure where to start,” she explains. When I was in college I lived on french fries and chicken fingers. I hope to show college students that there are a great variety of healthy and organic options to eat instead of the standard dining hall fare. The more we as consumers demand better quality food, the more farmers, restaurants, and grocery stores will carry it. We vote with our dollars, so it’s important to make conscious choices as much as can.” Recommended posts: “Beef…. It’s What’s For Dinner” and “Breakfast of Champions.”

92. Crafty Green Poet –  ”I was inspired to start writing my blog because I saw it as a way of combining my interests in poetry, crafts, wildlife and the environment,” explains Juliet Wilson, an environmental educator at the University of Edinburgh. “I felt that people who might not normally be interested in the environment might be drawn into my blog by the poetry or the crafts. I hope that readers of my blog can learn a bit about wildlife in the UK, about creative recycling and about environmental issues in general as well as finding out about interesting books and films on environmental themes.” Recommended posts: “Introduction to the Water of Leith” and “Black Flood.”

93. Columbia University Food Sustainability Project – “The blog was started as a forum for a student group at Columbia University, called CUFSP (Columbia University Food Sustainability Project),” explains CUFSP  President Kristina Gsell, “which manages the community garden on campus, promotes both indoor and outdoor composting on campus, and engages in other activities (such as potlucks, movie nights, etc) to raise awareness of and practices in support of food sustainability. Our posts are mostly informational about our club’s affairs (such as meetings, garden work days, garden updates, workshops, events, etc) — but also link to other interesting articles, sites, etc that are related to Food Sustainability.” Recommended posts: “Summer’s Bounty!” and “Sonoma County planted over 600 waterwise food gardens in a single weekend.”

94. Mindful Momma – “I was inspired to start my blog because I wanted to make smart, eco-friendly choices for my family and to help others navigate the complex maze of information about green living,” writes Micaela Preston. “My goal for both my blog and my book, (Practically Green: Your Guide to EcoFriendly Decision-Making) is to inspire, not intimidate!!  I provide information and tips about green and healthy living in an easy to understand format, along with many fun recipes and DIY projects and ideas.” Recommended posts: “Links to Make You Think: About Body Care Products” and “5 Fun & Affordable Ways to Green Your Wardrobe.”

95. 2MuchStuff – “I just found it difficult sometimes to find things (either services or products) that I felt were sufficiently ethical and/or environmentally friendly, and I thought that if I am having these problems maybe either people are too,” explains Lisa, the sole blogger of 2muchstuff. “Just the fact that it’s O.K. to not live in a commune or feel guilty about your purchasing decisions if they haven’t been researched to the endth degree, because every positive decision you make to try and live ethically and sustainably is a good thing.” Recommended posts:  ”3 of the best…..natural cold and flu relievers” and “Beauty Review: Yes To Carrots Body Lotion and Eye Contour Cream.”

96. Center for a Livable Future –  With numerous contributors, the articles cover agriculture, climate change, diet, industrial food animal production, food and farm policy, and even book reviews. “The interaction between diet and health is receiving significant attention in recent years and a growing body of work is developing about human-generated environmental hazards that impact the health of communities,” the authors explain. “Less studied and documented is how our industrialized food production systems impact human health and the natural environment.” Recommended posts: “‘Diet for a Hot Planet’ Explores Links between Diet and Climate Change” and “CLF is reading…

97. Homegrown Revolution – Author Erik Knutzen was inspired to start this environmental blog due to his “interest in old-style home economics. He explained that his journal is more of  a “diary” which documents his experiments and projects around his household. Recommended posts: “It ain’t “eco” if you can’t fix it,” “No garden space? Check this out” and “Laundry to Landscape 2.0.”

98. Real Food Challenge – “Young people in general (and students in particular) are, and will be, a driving force in this movement because of our collective ability to demand and achieve widespread structural and social change,” explains the authors. “A focus on students has further benefits and ripple effects due to our: economic power (directly and through their institutions), energy and creativity, high standards, influence on dominant culture, and eventual roles as decision-makers in the family and society.” Recommended posts: “Students on the rise: “let’s get CoFed.”

99. Peace College Green Team and the Sustainable Campus Committee – Even though there are no articles posted during the summer months, the blog for North Carolina’s Peace College strives to “identify and recommend…specific actions and strategic plans the College community can pursue to move…towards great environmental sustainability.” Students, professors, and administrators from all over the world can get inspiration from the articles, which cover various environmental activities, events and campaigns at Peace College in Raleigh, NC. Recommended posts: “Peace College Community; Leaders in Reduce, Reuse and Recycle” and “Sustainability: Different Shades of Green in Higher Education.”

100. The Green Guide for Kids – Sometimes you need to be talked to like a three-year-old when it comes to the environment. Despite its younger target audience, this blog provides educational articles and advice that every student should take into consideration. “The goal was to share ideas on being with kids, parents, and teachers from around the world,” explains Deirdre Gill. “I hope that kids will learn how their actions have can have a direct consequence on the health of the planet, both positive and negative. I hope the site inspires and empowers readers to take action locally and globally.” Recommended posts: “Beware the dust bunnies!” and “Biodegradable and compostable picnic disposables.”

Posted by alexis | in Resources | 9 Comments »

Top 40 podcasts for teachers

Aug. 14th 2010

1. The Teacher’s Podcast

Mark Gura and Dr. Kathy King bring you this series of podcasts, which cover “news, views, research and resources you can use.” Gura and king are educators themselves, and have experience as authors, professors and “ed tech experts.” The duo claim that their podcast won’t offer you the usual fare, but instead includes a fun and crisp perspective, as well as valuable resources.

2. Teach42

This blog from Steve Dembo features regular podcasts on education and technology. Teachers anywhere – Wyoming, Mississippi, Maine, Maryland – can hear about ways to use technology in their teaching, and can get reviews and news about new technological trends.

3. Podcast for Teachers

This resource-rich site includes podcasts that cover technology and education, with some recent posts covering topics such as “Technology, Mobility, and Careers,” “Science and Social Media,” and “Digital Texts Rock!” Each podcast is accompanied by numerous resources, links to relevant current events, occasional interviews, and other relevant links. This is a great resource for all teachers!

4. Learning Matters

John Merrow hosts this podcast, which discuss current events in education. Podcasts are short — generally 5 to 10 minutes each — and topics include Race to the Top, education in New Orleans ways to evaluate teachers, ESL and more.

5. New Teacher Hotline

Dr. Glen Moulton, a supervisor of instruction and teacher trainer, and Michael Kelley, the author of Rookie Teaching for Dummies, host this monthly podcast for new teachers. Podcasts cover the answers to questions submitted by new teachers and a variety of other topics of interest to those in their beginning years of teaching. Episodes typically last 20 to 30 minutes.

6. Speaking of History

Eric Langhorst is an eighth-grade history teacher in /Missouri, and he hosts podcasts that discuss education, history and technology. In his podcasts (and blog posts), he talks about trials in the classroom, reviews books, offers advice on how to incorporate technology into the classroom, and share professional opportunities for teachers.

7. Teacher Created Materials

You can stream or download podcasts on a range of subjects, from applying differentiation strategies to building vocabulary to fluency comprehension. Podcasts can be browsed according to teaching subject or by topic of interest, such as technology, test prep, and professional development.

8. Teaching with Technology

These podcasts cover “user-friendly techniques, suggestions, tips, and advice.” You can search podcasts according to topic of interest, which cover education and technology. Some recent podcasts discuss ways to use Google, blogs and other popular technology in the classroom.

9. The Tech Teachers

The mission of this podcast is simple: “Teachers talking about tech and education….” Ray is a physics teacher and Hollye is a Spanish teacher, and they focus their discussion on technology and how it can be used in the classroom. They evaluate popular gadgets and tools such as the iPad and google docs, and they include relevant links and resources with each podcast.

10. The Lookstein Center for Jewish Education

Mark Smilowitz offers insights and ideas about teaching in these podcasts. He shares reflections, tips, and strategies for teachers, especially Jewish educators.

11. Keeping Them Engaged

“The idea podcast for keeping students engaged” is hosted by Bobby Brooks, a self-proclaimed student engagement expert. His podcast explores unconventional ways to keep students engaged, including games and 3-D technology.

12. The Tech Pod Zone

This podcast features Mike, Rob, and Reboot talking in roundtable fashion about using technology in the classroom. The Wii, Moodle, and WikiSpaces are just a few of the tech tools that have been featured in recent podcasts.

13. Podcasts for Educators, Schools, and Colleges

These podcasts from the UK discuss a wide variety of topics relevant to teaching and learning activities. In addition to the podcasts hosted on the site, which offer a variety of resources and tips, the site also maintains a directory of other podcasts relevant to education and teaching.

14. Instructional Technology Podcasts

Instructional technology and curriculum design are the primary focuses of these podcasts, which focus a lot of attention on education in Texas. Distance education, gaming, higher education, and technical literacy are a few of the recent topics covered.

15. SMARTBoard Lessons Podcast

Categories covered under this podcast include art, health, math, media, reading, science, social studies, and writing. Regular podcasts include practical tips, collaborative discussions, and lesson planning advice. Each episode features a lesson, and all podcasts focus on the use of the SMARTBoard.

16. Teaching for the Future

Teaching for the Future is part blog, part podcast channel. Dave LaMorte is the host, and the focus is on education, technology, and literacy — particularly the strong influence that technology and the Internet have on all parts of society. Posts include relevant links, resources, and commentary.

17. Instant Anatomy

The podcasts on this site are just some of the myriad resources offered for the teaching of anatomy. Robert Whitaker was a paediatric urological surgeon before creating the site, and he is a current professor of clinically applied topographical anatomy. The site is full of resources for teaching and learning anatomy, and the podcasts offer in-depth and informative lectures.

18. JapanesePod 101

Use these podcasts to learn Japanese or to help you teach it in the classroom. Podcasts are organized according to level (beginner, intermediate, expert, etc.) and by topic. Each lesson is short and targeted around a goal.

19. ICT Guy

Here’s another great podcast about effectively using technology in the classroom. Some recent podcasts include “Create Digital Texts From Your Blog Posts With Anthologize, “Xinha for Web Forms,” and “Should we compare the iPad to the netbook?” Here you’ll find lots of informative posts with both tips and interesting discussions about using technology in teaching.

20. Educational Insights: Teaching for Today with Steve Decker

This informative blog features interviews, commentary and other content meant to promote discussion of educational methods and practices. Recent podcasts have tackled autism education, differentiation, and intervention models.

21. Middle School Matters

Podcasts are interspersed with blog posts about middle school news and educating middle school students. There is a focus on technology, with many recent posts focused on the impact of the iPad. Blog posts and podcasts include relevant links and resources.

22. District Leader’s Podcast

Eight hosts contribute to this podcast and accompanying blog, which is sponsored by McGraw-Hill Education’s Urban Advisory Resource. The resource includes educators and experts with experience in managing large school districts. Topics have included technology, intervention strategies, and Race to the Top funding.

23. Shakespodospheare

This podcast is devoted to the study of major works of British literature, specifically those of William Shakespeare. The majority of posts offer dramatic readings of the works, though some delve into explanation and analysis. These make great for great classroom conversation starters, and the dramatic readings can really bring the works to life!

24. English Conversations

These podcasts offer practical conversations for those who are learning English — or even for those who are looking to improve basic skills. You can browse conversations by topic, verb tense, or category. This is a great resource-rich site that’s great for teachers or independent learners!

25. Just Vocabulary

With just two words featured on the GRE per episode, this series of podcasts promises to increase your vocabulary skills. Each show includes definitions of the word, including synonyms, antonyms, and examples of usage. Another site that’s great for teachers or independent learners!

26. Blabbinit

“The chattering world of English” includes podcasts, a blog, karaoke, videos, and comics. Podcasts cover grammar, vocabulary, idioms, and more.

27. An Idiom a Day with Dave Jackson

This is a fun series of podcasts that gets at the eccentricities of English usage — bringing to life the everyday phrases and slang that native speakers use so frequently. This is a great site for teachers of English as a Second Language, especially, but it would also be great for teachers to use to challenge students to think about the origin of language and how literal definitions can be stretched and subverted.

28. Charles McNair’s Book Reviews

Don’t expect to find a review of John Grisham’s latest novel here; Charlese McNair, an AM radio show host, reviews some of the most historically significant novels, such as To Kill a Mockingbird, Things Fall Apart, and Moby Dick. These podcasts are a great supplement to classroom discussion about these notable works of literature.

29. This Week in Science

This “kick ass science podcast” looks at what’s new and significant in the field of science. Podcasts include in-depth discussion and analysis that helps elucidate scientific concepts and can encourage debate and classroom discussion.

30. Science on the Wild Side

These podcasts include “science and nature features, news, and humorous educational songs to listen and learn by.” The environment, animal species, ocean life, and space are just a few of the recent topics covered. Great for primary and middle-school students!

31. Truth Driven Thinking

These podcasts, hosted by author Stephen Gibson, critically analyze a number of trends and philosophical questions about human existence and religion to arrive at logic-based conclusions. The discussions found here are sure to stimulate heated debate among students, and they will surely be fertile ground for teaching students about thinking critically and building sound arguments in defense of their view points.

32. I Love History

This series of podcasts challenges listeners to “think question understand.” Podcasts cover apartheid, civil war, Elizabeth I, first world war, the Romans, and the modern world. There are also links to relevant sites and resources.

33. Colonial Williamsburg

Listen to podcasts about colonial American history from this well-known recreation settlement. Every podcast includes additional resources, and the archives go back to 2005. This is a rich resource for history teachers!

34. Great Speeches in History

Learn Out Loud offers a new historical speech each week. Expect to find notables such as John F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King Jr., and Winston Churchill. But don’t expect the speeches to be limited to those figures who lived during a time when recording was available. Reenactments are presented of figures such as George Washington. Podcasts can be downloaded or streamed, and each speech includes the author, the date, and some background information.

35. The History Faculty

Video podcasts lead students through in-depth discussions about historical figures and movements, and offer presentation and study guides to introduce new subjects. Subjects cover all historical eras and regions, and podcasts can be searched by topic.

36. EdTech Musician

The focus of these podcasts is on technology and music. Sometimes, posts feature discussions and examples of different music types, and other times, posts focus on the type of technology used in the production of music.

37. Music Teachers 911

This educational podcast is focused on helping music teachers improve their classes and their student performances. Episodes include useful tips, interviews, and a Q&A with listeners.

38. Photoshop for Painters

With the rise of the digital age, even tangible works of art have had to adapt to the need for digital representation. This podcast helps painters navigate photoshop to highlight and promote their work.

39. Photography 411

This series of podcasts focuses on practical tips and resources for better understanding and improving photography skills. It also looks at news and trends in the field, and includes interviews with leading experts.

40. English as a Second Language

This podcast includes useful tips and in-depth discussions for teaching English as a second language. Members of the site can also get full transcripts, additional vocabulary, comprehension questions, and extra explanations and cultural notes.

Posted by maria magher | in Education, Technology | 10 Comments »

Top 20 educational video games

Aug. 10th 2010

Video games aren’t just for play anymore. More and more games are being marketed to help students hone cognitive skills – and not just that hand-eye coordination that many of us claimed when we were younger. These games actually teach lessons and promote creativity. Here’s a roundup of some of our favorites:

1) Brain Age and Brain Age 2 (Nintendo DS)

Train Your Brain in Minutes a Day! This game will teach you math problems, concentration word puzzles and even Sudoku. Just don’t get caught during class!

2) PLATO Achieve (Playstation portable)

Designed for curricula in K-7 classrooms, the 28 language and 29 math games will absolutely reinforce lessons that students are learning in school. The content is aligned with IRA, NCTE, and NCTM guidelines.

3) Hot Brain (Playstation portable)

As a package of mini-games, Hot Brain requires the player/student to solve visual puzzles, math problems and even combine pictograms with wordplay. This particular game also has a multiplayer (“pass’n’play”) function for collaborative learning.

4) Big Brain Academy (Nintendo DS/Wii)

This party game helps you learn in a group setting — great for a classroom or your living room couch. Big Brain Academy is an interactive set of group challenges set for fun and learning. You can choose challenges from five categories: think, memorize, analyze, compute, and identify. The game can also be tailored to the individual by assessing strengths and weaknesses when you begin and then tracking progress over time.

5) Drawn to Life (Nintendo Wii/DS)

What better way to get children to interact with lessons than to make them come up with the solutions themselves? Drawn to life is an adventure story where the player creates logical elements of the story, for the hero to use!

6) Story Hour: Adventures (Nintendo Wii)

Children love having stories read to them, and when parents or teachers aren’t available, this video game can come to the rescue! Teaching children to read and understand storytelling through interactivity, Story
Hour invites children into their favorite tales!

7) Smarty Pants (Nintendo Wii)

Instead of focusing children on specific classroom lessons, Smarty Pants tests on more general knowledge. Family members and friends can challenge each other on a wide range of topics, with game play tailored according to the age level of each of the players. Additional challenge modes include tug of war and dance offs.

8) The Typing of the Dead (Dreamcast and PC)

Are you prepared for the zombie invasion? Turns out, your defense may need to be more academic than tactical. In this game, zombies lurch towards you slowly, and your only defense is to type out preset words to defeat them. Type faster! (and while you’re doing it, hone your typing skills and learn new vocabulary…)

9) Academic Skill Builders

Here you’ll find an array of educational games for kids to teach them math and language arts skills. Penguin Jump Multiplication, Drag Race Division, Integer Warp, and Spelling Bees are just a few of the cute games available. You can choose games according to the lesson that you want to learn.

10) Quest Atlantis

Students ages 9 to 16 engage in quests and missions that promote academic learning. The gaming environment also promotes socializing with other students and teachers, including blogs, polls, and bulletin boards.

11) The Incredibles (LeapFrog)

Kids can help everyone’s favorite superhero family save the day — all while learning math facts, problem solving, spelling and parts of speech!

12) Finding Nemo (LeapFrog)

Help Dory, Nemo and Marlin by learning letters, science facts, and reading and phonics skills! Kids can also connect online for more game fun and special rewards. Parents can also check in to see what their children are playing.

13) Mr. Pencil’s Learn to Draw and Write (LeapFrog)

Mr. Pencil has over 100 lessons to help teach children to draw and write. Mr. Pencil combines tools and games to help promote creativity and skill.

14) Little Big Planet (PS3)

Creating entire scenarios and worlds may seem daunting, but the imagination of students is given room to grow in Little Big Planet. Players have completely recreated other video games within Little Big Planet! The game will challenge students and hone their skills in telling a story and using their creativity.

15) Deadliest Warrior (Xbox 360)

Many a debate has raged over who would win: Pirates or Ninjas? Vikings or Knights? This game helps settle the debate with a heaping dose of historical realism. The game — based on the television show — includes detailed information about historical warriors, lending to an understanding of history and historical “technology.” Clearly, this fighting game may be more suited for supportive learning material than as a first-hand primary learning source. But it makes history fun and brings it to life for students!

16) Wii Fit (Wii)

This game is about far more than showing parents that video games aren’t necessarily turning their children into couch potatoes. Besides helping kids (of all ages) get their heart rates up and their blood pumping, the game also teaches valuable lessons about nutrition and physical fitness. Besides that, maintaining our bodies to be in physically fit shape is a fantastic lesson that anyone can, and should, learn.

17) Portal (Xbox 360)

This game develops students’ ability to think spatially. To move from challenge to challenge, students will have to overcome typical puzzle solving that involves a basic understanding of physics — including concepts such as momentum and velocity.

18) Sim City

What does it really take to run an entire city? From the smallest details of parks and recreation to balancing the budget with water, electricity, and road maintenance, students will learn about the big picture of city planning. The game is available in multiple versions for multiple platforms.

19) Sid Meier’s Civilization

Civilizations had to develop new technology to advance and grow their empires. Gathering together historical figures and civilizations, Civilization helps students to see how that evolution took place and society was shaped. There are multiple versions of the game, according to time period or genre, such as colonization or revolution, so students can choose which angle of history they want to bring to life. The game is available on multiple platforms, including Xbox 360, Playstation 3, Nintendo DS and the PC.

20)Dora the Explorer – Dora Saves the Snow Princess (Wii)

Hola! While students adventure through the game, parents can join in to help solve puzzles and give clues.

Posted by maria magher | in Education, Technology | 1 Comment »

Top 25 Helpful YouTube Videos for Teachers

Aug. 6th 2010

Want your students to get the message of a lesson AND bring it to them on their digital hometurf? These videos can help.

1. How to Create a Podcast

Students gather information from a variety of digital and technological outlets — whether sitting in front of a computer, watching television or listening to an mp3 player. Why not reach out to students by creating a lesson, with a personal touch, in podcast form? This video shows you how.

2. Using PowerPoint (or not)

Technology isn’t always the best choice for the classroom. This video explores when using PowerPoints are beneficial or not.

3. Microsoft Word Training Video

Just because you’re a teacher doesn’t mean you know everything. Some times, learning a few tricks can help save time — so you can enjoy that coffee break a little longer.

4. Pay Attention

It’s important to understand how young adults and technology have come together. This inspirational video makes a fantastic point about what it is to be a student in today’s technological world.

5. Shift Happens

Another inspiring video that poses some interesting questions about technology in education reform.

Often times, a historical lesson can be a little dry and get cluttered with dates and minutia. Videos based on historical events can brighten things up a little more.

1. The Bayeux Tapestry

What is a tapestry? How did they relate to other historical recordings? What can they tell us about the lives of their contemporaries?

2. The Computer History Museum

This video includes a series of interviews and clips about the history of computers. Notable figures such as Steve Wozniak and Bill Gates weigh in on the influence and development of these devices, which have become such an integral part of our society.

3. How to Make a Mummy

Liven up your science lessons with this comedic look at the process of mummification — made by teachers!

4. Gettysburg Civil War reenactment footage

The American Civil War is an important point of American history. This video brings it to life by helping students see the clothes, weapons, and daily lives of the soldiers and even the marching of regiments.

5. The Fall of the Berlin Wall

Students can relive this historic event through actual news footage — including the day the wall came down, and its proceeding days and following cheering crowds.

The Arts are almost as large a part of our daily lives as is technology. Art sparks creative and critical thinking, and it influences nearly everything we do.

1. Salvador Dali

The surreal paintings of Dali are legendary — the man was more legendary. Explore both with this collection of photos, which can be a great starting point for a discussion about the influence of Dali and his work.

2. Death in the Rijksmuseum

The art of Rembrandt, Vermeer and Van Gogh all await your students in this quick virtual walk through the Rijksmuseum.

3. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XCD0CNaNO0o “Art Education 2.0” A screencast that talks about the online community at ning.com

4. Art Education 2.0

Check out the community of educators on the Ning network 2.0 and find out how it can help you develop your art education curriculum.

5. Teaching Flute to the Remedial Band Student/Novice

A flute teacher offer her tips for how to help students who are just starting out or haven’t much practice with playing the flute.

Aside from gaining the attention of your students, its important to have a happy, organized classroom.

1. How to Maintain Classroom Discipline

This video looks at good and bad methods of classroom discipline. It’s a little outdated (1947), but many teachers will still find some good tips.

2. Education Techniques for Children with Autism

This video presents steps to address the ga” when trying to teach a child with a learning disability — specifically through the use of applied behavior analysis.

3. Positive Learning Places – Classroom Management Plan

The easiest way to capture your students’ interest is to make their environment interesting. This video gives you some tips for doing just that, and it guides you through steps for classroom maintenance and discipline.

4. Teacher Training

It never hurts to have a helping hand, and these teachers offer a variety of tips and strategies on teaching, including classroom management and discipline.

5. First Year Teachers: What Not To Do in the Computer Lab

The title says it all. And though the video uses a casual approach, there are some strong ideas here.

Sometimes, even teachers need a break! Spouting the same facts over and over again gets old Why not let someone else give their view on subjects?

1) Brad Neely’s George Washington

This one’s rated R for language, so best to hold it for older, college students. There are a ton of great “facts” about the nations first president.

2. Barry Pilling’s Version of The History of the World

The entire history of the world in under seven minutes. hmm… I don’t believe I ever saw Hitler’s signature on the Magna Carta.

3. The Math Teacher

Whats the easiest way to memorize anything, especially math? Flo-Rida, ofcourse.

4. World Freehand Circle Drawing Champion

If Flo-Rida isn’t available, why not try showing off some skills to grab the attention of students? Here’s a good lesson in math and physics with a fun demonstration.

5. Old Spice commercial

Here’s a great study for advertising students — or even film production students. I mean, you tell me how it was done all in one take.

Posted by maria magher | in Education, Technology | No Comments »

Top 25 Android apps for education

Aug. 5th 2010

The iPhone and iPad don’t get to have all the fun. No matter where you live: Missouri, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, Washington, Android is among the leading smart-phone technology, and there are over 70,000 apps available for it. Though we can’t claim to have reviewed all 70,000 of them, here are our suggestions for some of the top apps available for education — for use in or out of the classroom:

Memory Trainer

A “Gold’s Gym for your memory muscles.” This app claims to help you improve your memory through regular mental exercise. The app specifically targets your spatial memory, which is responsible for recording information about your environment, such as when you navigate around a city.

Capital Quiz

Test your knowledge of countries of the world, as well as their capitals, flags, and currencies. Challenge your friends and online opponents in trivia games.

Fact Book

This app is basically a mobile atlas rolled into an encyclopedia. Well, maybe not quite. But it will allow you to get data about individual countries such as population, military expenditures, and cell phone usage. Categories include geography, population, government, transportation, and military. You can also produce charts and graphs of the information, and can compare countries according to category.

Google Sky Map

When you look up at the sky, does it feel like you’re looking at one of those Magic Eye pictures where if you stare at a spot long enough, a picture is supposed to come together? This app can help you identify what you’re looking at. Just point your phone at the sky, and this app will highlight the constellations, pulling a clear picture out of a jumble of stars. It will also identify planets and other celestial bodies. If you’re looking for something specific, you can also do a search.

Formulas Lite

This app gathers together some of the most important and often used formulas for math, physics and chemistry. It also includes a scientific calculator and basic translator. Don’t expect to be able to pass yourself off as a quantum physicist with the help of this app, but it might help get you through some intense study sessions.

Plink Art

The same way that Google Sky Map helps you identify the stars, Plink Art helps you identify works of art. Take a picture of what you’re looking at, and Plink will match it to its database and give you the identifying details. You can also browse art according to era, art movement, or gallery, or simply hit “random” for an unexpected — though maybe not unknown — masterpiece. This app is great for brushing up on your art history knowledge or for discovering new favorites!

Wattpad

Over 100,000 novels, short stories, poetry collections and more are available for download on this app, which is composed of entirely user-submitted content.

Sixty Four

You can learn to read level 1 and 2 Braille in this application. Obviously, you can’t learn to read it by touch (since the phone screen won’t be raised), but you can learn to read it by sight — meaning that this application is better meant for academics and those hoping to train as support personnel.

Document Scanner

If you need a document in a pinch, or you just don’t feel like taking it to have it scanned or faxed, you can use this app to do it on your phone. You can scan any number of pages and convert them into a single .pdf file.

USA Quiz

Test your knowledge of the capitals, flags, nicknames, cities, and more of the states of the USA. Choose from four different difficulty levels when you challenge opponents in this fun trivia game.

Deluxe Moon

This app lets you learn more about the moon and its influence on your everyday activities. Features include names and pictures of the moon phases, current zodiac sign for the moon’s phase, information about the moon’s cycle, moonrise and moonset times, and more.

Kids Numbers and Math

Preschoolers can get help learning their numbers and developing basic math skills with the help of this app. Addition, subtraction, and learning numbers are the primary features, but there are also optional advanced exercises. Language options include English, Chinese, Japanese, French, German, Spanish, Italian, and Russian.

Urban Dictionary

When your kids want to know the 411, do you know what they mean? Do you find it hard to follow when they end every other word in “izzle?” Perhaps this app can help. You can look up the meaning of modern slang words in the user-generated database. You can also browse random words or check out the word of the day.

LSAT Assassin

This handy app will help you prep for the Law School Admissions Test through tutorials, drills, and practice exercises. But this app is useful for more than just law students: The test measures cognitive reasoning and logic, so the app is a handy tool for lessons of the same nature.

Kidroid

This game for kids ages 3 to 5 aims to help improve recognition skills by matching images with a written or spoken word.

GeoQuiz

Here’s another trivia game to enhance learning. The app covers topics from capitol cities and flags to natural extremes.

PhotoMix

This fun application allows you to turn your pictures into puzzles. You can shake the phone to shuffle, then move the pieces into place to try to put it back together. This makes a fun brain teaser or logic puzzle that can be personalized according to interests.

My Pocket Prof

Organize your classroom notes and assignments with this handy app! You can synchronize your notes then share them with your friends. You can even sell your notes, or create online courses and quizzes that you can sell. And, of course, what you can sell, you can also buy.

Nook for Android

Get millions of books in the palm of your hand through Barnes and Noble. A handy e-reader!

Pocket Knowledge

Have a question? This app has the answer. Ask it whatever you want, and it will generate an answer that you can then store for later use. Topics include math, culture, sports, weather, physics, chemistry, socioeconomic data, nutrition and more.

Electricity Calculator

This app is your own personal electricity meter! With it, you can find out how much electricity you use and how much it costs you. You can even measure it according to appliance. Aside from the practical benefits of such an app for adults, this is also useful in the classroom for teaching students about electricity, or even about the importance of budgeting.

Music Dictionary

Learn all the Italian words involved in reading and playing music. This is a useful tool for classical musicians and for music teachers!

Guitar Solo Lite

Learn how to play the six string with this virtual pocket guitar. There are over 380 chords and diagrams for classical, acoustic and electric guitar. A handy guide for helping you learn to play guitar on your own!

StatDist

This handy app “calculates densities, probabilities, and quantiles of common useful continuous and discrete distributions.” If you don’t know what that means, you might need an app to help you figure out this app. Categories include uniform, normal, gamma, exponential, chi, discrete uniform, binomial, geometric, and poisson. This is a handy app for the statistics classroom.

Math Wizard

Kids can use this app to learn basic math skills: addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. Flash cards and study questions are used to guide students through the material. In addition, the app offer stats on the student’s trouble areas, and the difficulty level can be adjusted for individual needs.

Posted by Staff Writers | in Education, Technology | 2 Comments »