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Google Election Tools for Teachers

  What it is: Google has an excellent tool resource center for teachers and the newest addition is the Elections tools for Teachers section.  Google is partnering with the National Student/Parent Mock Election to get students of all ages excited about the coming election in November.  The tools and activities help teach students about the candidates, issues, and about the election process in general.  Tools include an electoral college map, journey maps, YouTube You choose videos, Election video search, Power Readers, letter to the next president, and more.   How to integrate Google Election Tools for Teachers into the classroom:  Google offers amazing tools to educators and the Election Tools for Teachers don’t disappoint!  Each tool on Googles site offers ideas for integration in the classroom and lesson plans.   This years election seems to be different in so many ways than elections of the past…our future presidents are using technology like YouTube, Facebook, and blogging to influence voters.  The Google Election Tools are a great way to examine this phenomenon more closely while teaching about the election process and about the candidates and issues.  Enroll your class in a Mock Election that will take place on October 30, 2008 and before your students cast their vote, use the Google tools to engage students in learning more about the candidates and issues.   Tips:  If you don’t have access to the election videos because YouTube is blocked at school, use a file conversion program like www.zamzar.com to download the video from home.     Leave a comment and share how you are using Google Election Tools for Teachers in your classroom.  

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Be Funky

Posted by admin | Posted in Character Education, Fun & Games, Language Arts, Middle/High School, Primary Elementary, Science, Secondary Elementary, Web2.0, Websites | Posted on 18-01-2008

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What it is: Be Funky is a web 2.0 application that lets students take any picture and transform it into a cartoon or a sketch.

How to integrate Be Funky into the classroom: Use Be Funky in conjunction with other tools such a Bubblr (see post from the 16th) or software like Comic Life (check out iLearn Technology store for Comic Life). Since Be Funky changes a regular photograph into a cartoon, you can create cartoon comic strips in class. Transform field trip pictures into cartoons and invite students to create a comic strip retell about the field trip. Students can be the star of their own comic strips where they create a comic autobiography. Take pictures during a science experiment and create a comic strip with the scientific process of the experiment.

Tips: Be Funky requires you to have an account (this is free but asks for an email address). If you plan on having your students transform the pictures into cartoons you may think about creating one class account for students to use. I wanted to download the cartoon picture to my computer so that I could use them in Comic Life. This is not an option that Be Funky offers so I created my cartoon and then took a screen capture of the cartoon to save it as an image to my computer.

Please leave a comment and share how you are using Be Funky in your classroom.

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