Geocube…… re-inventing the way to explore Geography

The world of Geography at your fingertips and just a mouse click away!

Geocube is an attractive online resource about Geography. Geocube is based on the principle of the Rubik Cube with six faces and 54 topics. It is a virtual and easily accessible website which is available online for free. Move the Geocube around with your mouse and explore the faces and topics.Geocube provides an accessible way to read, see and watch what Geography is and geographers do.

Brilliant to use in research lessons, and great for pupils to interact and share their learning with each other. The interface is slick and easy to use and keeps pupils engaged in the learning.

I recently came across Aurasma on the front cover of Good Food magazine and was captivated. Turning the average image into a link, video or message brings your pages (or classroom walls) to life, and instantly made me think of the pictures in the Harry Potter stories. The ability to create your own augmented reality images led me to see very little of my wife that weekend, I just spent my time shout ‘WOW, look at this’ to her! Then with my teacher head on I started to think of ways you could use it in the classroom. How could pupils use it, or how could the school use it as a tool? Here is what I came up with:

  1. Create an inspiration board on your table. Fill it with images, videos, sound clips of your learning topic and allow the children to investigate. 
  2. Create Language tags for Key words. Allow pupils to either learn a foreign language, or develop their English skills by image swapping words. 
  3. Create a Video treasure hunt around the school. 
  4. Have pupils create a video evaluating a piece of work, lay the video over the work and display on the wall. When parents come on open days give them the opportunity to learn about the pupils work and how it was created (plus the use of technology will AMAZE them!)
  5. Use them as instruction manuals. Create a video showing how to use a piece of technology and lay it over the top of it. When a user points their device at the object they get a how to guide. 
  6. Create Harry Potter style wanted posters or newspaper articles. Get the children to show off their acting skills by screaming in their wanted shots, or posing for a paparazzi shot! 
  7. Digital Leader instructions. Most schools now have digital leaders to promote the use of ICT across the school. Get them to create simple instructional videos or how2 guides for your school’s programs. 

Hopefully this should give you some ideas or starting points for using the app in your classrooms. I think I’m going to the using it more and more over the next few months, so please share or discuss any other ideas for the app you have.

To get the free Aurasma App click here.

buttonbass.com

 

While it’s not my taste in music my pupils are loving this in their Golden Time at the moment. They are able create fantastic music at the touch of a button, testing their brain power with which beats go with which rhythms. Visually stunning, with a great choice this should be a winner with your pupils. The website is nice and diverse, with instruments such as mixers, guitars, pianos and drums. Have a go with the instrument above, see how creative you can be!

ICT Facts Logo

I love it when the ICT facts and figures gets released. It means a day of discussion with my ICT class. I think today I will be discussing the number of people who are able to get online, and how they make the most of it. Getting the children to understand the difference between a developed and non-developed country will hopefully get them to appreciate the lessons we have.

All of the facts got me thinking about the worlds prospects in ICT, and where we will be in say 5, or 10 years time. We have all seen the future technology videos produced by Microsoft, and they are an amazing tool to use with children. Some of the technology is amazing. what makes it amazing is the fact that given 5 years most of it will be in development. But it also got me thinking about where we used to be. I had a look through some of my old video links and found a ‘Did you know’ on YouTube from 2009. Some of the figures were astonishing  but all I could think what that they must have paled into insignificance by now. That as a world we have developed our ICT so much in 4 years, and increased online activity in all areas. Amazing. What I love most about the video though is the reference to ‘Myspace’. Taking it old school!

 

 

curious

Yesterday I stumbled upon an amazing website. Curious.com is a fantastic learning zone filled with videos and guides for anything you can image. The videos you download run like lessons, with breaks and chapters for you to follow. You can also send the ‘teacher’ and work you have done from the lesson, or reviews on how you found it. As I said previously, I only found it a few days ago, but it looks like a brilliant educational community. My favourite tool to use is the ‘curious’ button. Almost like shuffle on your ipod, it randomly searches the lessons to find you something interesting. I can see myself losing several hours to this, filling my mind with yet more useless facts!

WinterHouse

LOVE LOVE LOVE this! The Winter house is brilliant interactive story book. It leads the children through a mystery story, where they have to click to investigate multiple items. Brilliant for Talk for Writing, visually stunning and engages all children. Showed it to my class once, then they were desperate to get back on it. So to feed their appetite we booked the ICT suite for an afternoon. they sat going through the puzzle, working collaboratively, and sharing idea. The independent learning was wonderful to see. Try it with your class and see how they get on. One problem with the site is the inability to continue from where you left off, you have to start again each time.

images

Recently I found Taggalaxy, an amazing Flickr searching web tool that creates a visually stunning way to explore images.  Taggalaxy puts your search into the metaphor of a planet, with connecting ideas and themes as smaller planets around it.

tag-galaxy

When you click on a planet it collects images from Flickr with your tag, and allows you to browse and zoom through hundreds of pictures. Brilliant in the classroom for an inspiration board, or as a discussion starter. I used this last week when asking children to create mood boards on Ancient Egypt, worked perfectly and had the children captivated. It really has to bee seen to be believed.

 

This site currently features in my 25 education websites, to have a look at the other 24 click here.

 

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