Tag Archives: TechnoJourney

Use YouTube Videos in your Classroom

YouTube and Education

YouTube Videos can enhance learning. Discover the benefits!

Are your students doing a research project or giving a presentation? Consider how YouTube can help!

Videos posted to YouTube or elsewhere on the Internet are an excellent source of information. Documentaries, speeches, and how-to demonstrations are just some of the videos your students can watch.

Is YouTube blocked at your school? It is at ours. This doesn’t stop the students from using Internet videos to improve learning.

This blog entry lists other websites that post high-quality educational videos. As well, this blog entry explains a simple technique to filter all YouTube videos out of your Google search results so your students can find only the ones they can watch in the computer lab. Keep reading!

This week my students completed Assignment 8 in the technology project, TechnoJourney. In this assignment students were challenged to find educational videos that could help them complete their school work. They looked for a documentary on a polar bear, speech by Martin Luther King, demonstration on how to build a bridge using Popsicle sticks, and more! Afterwards we discussed the benefits of using videos.

UPDATE: TechnoJourney was replaced with TechnoInternet. The activities are similar.

Educational Benefits of YouTube Videos

There are many reasons why your students should use YouTube Videos:

  1. Research Facts: Your students can learn about a topic by watching a video. They can pause it to record facts and then resume playing to learn even more!
  2. Personally Meaningful: A video can create a connection with the viewer. By watching the event it makes the viewer feel like they are part of the action. For example, if your students read a speech by Martin Luther King it would not be as compelling as actually watching him deliver it to an audience.
  3. Complex Topics are Made Simple: Some concepts are difficult to understand. A video demonstration can make a complex topic easier to comprehend.
  4. Presentation Tool: A video can be shown during a presentation as a hook to aquire audience interest, illustrate a concept, or highlight an important point.
  5. Current Information: Be up-to-date! Your students can watch a video to learn about the the latest information on a topic, view a speech given that day, or watch a demonstration of a modern device.
  6. Assist Weak Readers: If you have students that are weak readers videos are an excellent teaching tool. A video allows them to gather research facts, engages their interest in a topic, and helps them to comprehend a concept.
  7. Target Learning Styles: People don’t learn the same. Videos target students who are visual learners.

Website with High-Quality Educational Videos

If you can’t access YouTube there are many other websites that have excellent videos. Here are some of my favorites!

National Geographic for Kids: Videos are divided by topic such as animals, history, people, and science. These videos are fantastic!

History.com: The videos are listed by topic or historical event. Many videos are only a few minutes long yet offer an excellent summary.

PBS Nova: Science and technology concepts are made interesting and are easy to understand.

How Stuff Works: This website has a video about EVERY topic you can think about. At the bottom of the page are a list of categories that let you pick from numerous topics such as endangered species, earth science, and anatomy. A NOTE OF CAUTION: This website has a video about EVERYTHING. Depending on your school community, it may have videos about topics you might not want your students to view.

NASA Video Gallery: Encourage your students to watch videos posted to the NASA website if you are doing a Space unit. They are so interesting.

How to Filter Google Search Results to Remove all YouTube Videos

If YouTube is blocked at your school, searching for videos can be frustrating. It often seems like all the perfect videos are ones that your students cannot view. This can cause your students to become discouraged. Follow these instructions to filter your Google search results so that no YouTube videos show up in the search results.

  1. Display the Google Search Page
  2. Type keyword phrase video -youtube. For example polar bear video -youtube

Yes, it really is THAT SIMPLE! The minus sign tells Google NOT TO SHOW ANY RESULTS WITH THE WORD YOUTUBE!

Is YouTube Blocked at Your School?

Can you watch YouTube videos at your school? Do you encourage your students to use online videos to enhance learning? Share your ideas!

Other Articles about Teaching Internet Skills using TechnoJourney

Now the Students’ Turn: Reflecting on TechnoJourney
A Teacher Speaks Out: Yes, you should teach Internet skills!
Peer to Peer Teaching – Students Become the Teachers
Internet Tour Guide Activity
Use YouTube Videos in your Classroom
Students Love Google Maps
Review How to Sort Google Images with Your Students
Teaching Internet Skills – The Trust Test
Wikipedia in the Classroom
Bookmarking is a Basic Internet Skill that can be Complex
Metacognition and Teaching about the Internet
4 Strategies for Reviewing Internet Search Results
When Should Students Start Using the Internet?
Should you Teach Internet Skills?

Students Love Google Maps

Use Google Maps with your Grade 3 and 4 Students

Use Google Maps with your Grade 3 and 4 Students

I didn’t think my students would like the map making lesson. I thought they would find it boring.

I was WRONG!

My Grade 3 and Grade 4 students LOVED map making!

I am teaching TechnoJourney, as a guest instructor. The classroom teacher had selected the assignments she wanted me to teach from the technology project. One of the extension activities she chose was map making. In this activity, students use Google Maps to display a street map of the school area and generate a set of driving directions.

NOTE: TechnoJourney was replaced with TechnoInternet. The activities are similar.

I had scheduled the activity for half the class. I did not think it would take very long as there was not that much to do. We just had to type in a few addresses and then explore some of the viewing options. What I did not anticipate was how much the students would love map making.

When using Google Maps the Grade 3 and Grade 4 students loved:

  • changing the magnification of the map
  • displaying photos from around their neighborhood
  • viewing a satellite image of the area around the school
  • pretending to drive around their neighborhood using Street View
  • checking to make sure that the driving directions generated by Google were correct
  • printing out the driving directions with a map and Street View images

Google Maps sparked student interest and it did not take long for the short lesson to expand in a surprising way. Students began to ask excellent questions. They wanted to see and explore more. So we did!

They posed the following questions:

  • Will Google generate the same directions if bus, walk, or bike are selected instead of drive? We found out the answer!
  • Do you have to put in a street address or can you just type in the name of a place? We put that to the test by typing in a range of famous landmarks.
  • Can Google see my house? The students are eight and nine years old. Yes, they do think that Google can see their house. A quick Internet search helped them to understand how Street View was created.

Students made a few mistakes along the way which provided fantastic learning opportunities. For example, they learned:

  • Spelling counts! If you spell the name of a street wrong, then Google will not be able to find the location or will show you a place you do not want to go.
  • Be specific! If you do not specify the city or province Google might display a street map for the correct address in the wrong city.
  • Details matter! If you do not know the house number you may not be able to find where you want to go quickly. Streets can be very long.

At the end of the lesson, we discussed the practical uses for Google Maps and Street View. Here is the list the students generated for why they would use this Internet feature:

  • Get directions to go to a friend’s house to work on a school project.
  • Tell a friend who is coming to my birthday party how to get to my house.
  • If I missed the school bus, I could tell someone how to drive to the school.
  • If I was lost I could find my way home.

I know that you are really busy and that computer lab time can be limited. However, if you have a few minutes at the end of class or you are finished a unit but aren’t ready to start something new, take some time to use Google Maps. Your students will love it!

Does Google Maps Appeal to All Students?

This activity was done with Grade 3 and Grade 4 students. That is very young! Would older students like the activity as much?

Other Articles about Teaching Internet Skills using TechnoJourney

Now the Students’ Turn: Reflecting on TechnoJourney
A Teacher Speaks Out: Yes, you should teach Internet skills!
Peer to Peer Teaching – Students Become the Teachers
Internet Tour Guide Activity
Use YouTube Videos in your Classroom
Students Love Google Maps
Review How to Sort Google Images with Your Students
Teaching Internet Skills – The Trust Test
Wikipedia in the Classroom
Bookmarking is a Basic Internet Skill that can be Complex
Metacognition and Teaching about the Internet
4 Strategies for Reviewing Internet Search Results
When Should Students Start Using the Internet?
Should you Teach Internet Skills?

Review How to Sort Google Images with Your Students

Review How to Sort Google Images with Your Students

Review How to Sort Google Images with Your Students

Take ten minutes at the beginning of class to transform your students into Internet Experts! In this blog article, I outline six options that make it easy for your students to find the perfect picture for their school assignment. Read on to learn more!

I am teaching the TechnoKids technology project, TechnoJourney. I am on Assignment 7 which includes activities for searching, sorting, and saving pictures from the Internet. Most of my students already know how to find an online image and save it to their folder. However, what I quickly discovered is that after typing in a keyword, the only strategy used to review the search results is to scroll up and down the screen scanning the bank of images to find the one they like.

UPDATE: TechnoJourney was replaced with TechnoInternet. The activities are similar.

The good news is there is a better way to quickly find the perfect picture! My students were so pleased to realize there was a faster way. Perhaps your students will be too!

You students have likely used Google Images hundreds of time. Despite how many times they have used this search engine, most will have never noticed the options on the LEFT side of the screen. Images can be sorted and filtered by subject, size, color, type, size, and time. These options will allow your students to find what they want FASTER!

Google Image Search Activity

Have your students complete this simple activity.

  1. To start, have your students open their web browser and go to www.google.com.
  2. Next, they should click the Images link at the top of the window.
  3. Type the search term parrots and then press the ENTER key. (There are so many great pictures and you are guaranteed to get results each time the images are filtered.)
  4. Now have them look at the LEFT side of the screen and read the words written in RED. These are the sorting and filtering options.
  5. Have students explore each option by systematically clicking on each one to study the results:
    1. Click By subject. The images are sorted by subject area such breed or activity.
      To redisplay the entire bank of images, click All results.
    2. Click Large. The images are sorted to display high-quality pictures. Click on Medium and then Icon to see how the bank of images changes.
      To redisplay the entire bank of images, click Any size.
    3. Click Black and white. Notice that the pictures look similar to coloring book images. Click red from the color palette. Now there are only red birds.
      To redisplay the entire bank of images, click Any color.
    4. Click Face to show people in the picture. Click Photo, Clip art, and then Line drawing to notice how the pictures displayed changes.
      To redisplay the entire bank of images, click Any type.
    5. Click Show sizes to have the pixel size displayed below each thumbnail.
      To redisplay the entire bank of images, click Standard view.
    6. Click Past week to view recently posted images.
      To redisplay the entire bank of images, click Any time.
    7. Click Reset tools to REMOVE ALL SORT ORDERS AND FILTERS!
  6. Afterwards discuss when you would use each option.

Practical Reasons for Using the Google Image Search Options

When should your students sort by subject?

Have your students use this option when they have too many pictures in their search results and it is taking a long time to find what they want. Sorting by subject, groups the images together making the results faster to scan.

When should your students sort by size?

Sometimes when students insert a saved picture from the Internet into their work it can become blurry when they try to enlarge it. When this happens, the students must make the picture smaller or delete the image and find a new one. To avoid this from happening, sort Google Images search results by Large size. Now there will only be high-quality images that will look great on a PowerPoint slide, poster, or report title page.

When should your students sort by color?

If your students print their school work in grayscale then color is not an important factor. However, if their work will be printed in color, then it is a good idea to sort by color to find the perfect picture.

When should your students sort by type?

Have your students use this option to narrow down the search results to display pictures that will best suit their school work. For example, if students want a photograph then select Photo, however if a cartoon like image is more appropriate then Clip art is a better choice.

When should your students display size?

For the most part, this option is not useful to many elementary students. The picture dimensions in pixels are displayed over top of the thumbnail. Encourage your students to use the Size option instead.

When should your students sort by date?

This option display recently posted images. Have your students use this option if they are looking for an image of a current event, latest product release, or recent photograph of a person.

Other Articles about Teaching Internet Skills using TechnoJourney

Now the Students’ Turn: Reflecting on TechnoJourney
A Teacher Speaks Out: Yes, you should teach Internet skills!
Peer to Peer Teaching – Students Become the Teachers
Internet Tour Guide Activity
Use YouTube Videos in your Classroom
Students Love Google Maps
Review How to Sort Google Images with Your Students
Teaching Internet Skills – The Trust Test
Wikipedia in the Classroom
Bookmarking is a Basic Internet Skill that can be Complex
Metacognition and Teaching about the Internet
4 Strategies for Reviewing Internet Search Results
When Should Students Start Using the Internet?
Should you Teach Internet Skills?

Teaching Internet Skills – The Trust Test

Teaching Internet Skills - The Trust Test

Is the source trustworthy? Use these tips to determine if a web-based article passes the Trust Test.

Many elementary students trust everything they read on the Internet. They believe that if it is written on a web page, then it must be true. It is essential that teachers provide their students with criteria they can use to determine if the information they are using for a research project  is from a reliable source.

I call this…the Trust Test.

This week my students, who are completing TechnoJourney, learned about trust.  We found an article on the Internet and using a checklist we determined if the information was trustworthy. There are 7 elements to the checklist. I have outlined them below. You do not need to have a checkmark for all 7 elements to trust the source. However, if you have barely any checkmarks, then this is an indicator that you need to find a better source of information or look for another website that has the same information to double check the facts.

UPDATE: TechnoJourney was replaced with TechnoInternet. The activities are similar.

Web Address has a Name that is Well-Known

The web address gives you clues about whether you can trust the source of information. If the web address has the name of a well-known place, organization, publication, or educational television program it most likely can be trusted. For example, trustworthy URLs might be www.nasa.gov, www.britishmuseum.org, or www.nationalgeographic.com.

Web Address Shows the Type of Web Page as gov, edu, or org

The web address gives you clues about the type of web page:

  • .gov means the web page is written by the government
  • .org means the web page is written by an organization
  • .edu means the web page is written by an education organization
  • .com means the web page is written by a business

Web pages with the suffix .gov or .edu are trustworthy. Most web pages that end in org can also be trusted. You will need to check other factors to make sure that you can trust information from a .com web page. For example, the .gov in the web address http://www.epa.gov tells you right away that the information is trustworthy.

Web Page Tells Who Wrote the Information

When getting facts from the Internet it is important to know who wrote the information. You should be less trusting if you cannot tell who wrote the information on a web page. The author may be a person or an organization. Typically, the author will be written near the top or bottom of the web page.

Author is an Expert on the Topic

You can trust information from an expert. If an organization wrote the article you need to decide if they are a group that knows a lot about the topic. If a person wrote the article you need to check to see if they are an expert. One way to do this is to see if they listed their job title, education, or the place where they work. Another way to decide if the author is an expert is to see if they included a list of sources where they found the information.

Contact Information is Included on the Web Page

A person or organization that is trustworthy will often include an e-mail address, telephone number, mailing address, social media connections, or other contact information. If you cannot find this information you should be less trusting of the facts.

Web Page Looks Professional

A web page that looks good is one way to build trust. If a web page has spelling mistakes, links that do not work, or a sloppy design it means that the person has not taken the time to do a good job. If they do not care about how the web page looks, they may also not care if the facts on the web page are true.

Web Page Tells Where you can Find More Information

One way to tell if information is trustworthy is to find the same facts in another place. A web page that lists other websites, books, or publications where you can learn more about the topic is a good sign that the information can be trusted.

Teaching Internet Skills

Are your students critical of the information they read online? Do they believe everything they read on the Internet is true? What strategies or criteria do you use to assess if a web-based article passes the Trust Test?

Other Articles about Teaching Internet Skills using TechnoJourney

Now the Students’ Turn: Reflecting on TechnoJourney
A Teacher Speaks Out: Yes, you should teach Internet skills!
Peer to Peer Teaching – Students Become the Teachers
Internet Tour Guide Activity
Use YouTube Videos in your Classroom
Students Love Google Maps
Review How to Sort Google Images with Your Students
Teaching Internet Skills – The Trust Test
Wikipedia in the Classroom
Bookmarking is a Basic Internet Skill that can be Complex
Metacognition and Teaching about the Internet
4 Strategies for Reviewing Internet Search Results
When Should Students Start Using the Internet?
Should you Teach Internet Skills?