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Virtual Volcano

What it is:   Virtual Volcano is a Discovery Channel interactive where students learn about and test out volcanoes.  First students get information about plate boundaries, active volcanoes around the world, and tectonic plates.  They see all of this information on a 3-D rotating globe.  Next students can learn about the different types of volcanoes, they will discover the three most common categories and read about each categories profile and its association with types of magma.  Then students can take a journey inside the volcano.  Here they will learn about the vents and how the volcano works.  After students have learned some basic information about volcanoes, they can build their own volcano and watch it erupt.  Students can set the conditions for the volcanoes, changing the viscosity and gas.  When they are finished creating the volcano, they can test out it’s eruption. How to integrate Virtual Volcano into the classroom:  Virtual Volcano goes beyond the vinegar and baking soda models.  This site really gives students an inside look at exactly how a volcano works.  Students can adjust the viscosity and gasses and get a real idea about what is going on when a volcano erupts.  This site would make an excellent experiment center on classroom computers while your students are learning about volcanoes.  The site is also perfect for whole class instruction with a projector or an interactive whiteboard.  Be sure to invite students up to adjust the conditions of the volcano and create their own eruption.  Discuss the type of volcano the class has created and make predictions about what the volcano will look like before erupting it.    Tips:   In the upper right corner of the volcano simulator you will find a link to information about Pompeii.  Students can learn about Pompeii and take a quiz.  There is also an excellent video of a volcano eruption here. Leave a comment and tell us how you are using Virtual Volcano in your classroom.

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Death in Rome

Posted by admin | Posted in Analyze, Apply, Evaluate, History, Language Arts, Middle/High School, Secondary Elementary, Understand (describe, explain), Websites | Posted on 20-10-2010

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What it is: Death in Rome is an interactive history experience from the BBC.  The game takes place in the year 80AD where Tiberius Claudius Eutychus is found dead in his apartment.  Students must put their sleuth skills to work as they investigate clues scattered around the room to solve the mystery.  They have until dawn to crack the case.  In addition to clues in the room, students can “talk” to modern-day experts for additional information, and interrogate witnesses.

How to integrate Death in Rome into your curriculum: Death in Rome is a fantastic exercise in critical thinking, reasoning, and deduction.  Students will learn about ancient Rome, using clues to solve a mystery, and find out how engaging and interesting history can be.  Death in Rome would make a great partner activity.  Students can work together in teams to solve the crime.  When each team has cracked the case, they can share the strategy they used and the clues that tipped them off to the solution.  If you don’t have access to a lab setting, solve the case as a class using a projector or interactive whiteboard.  Students can take turns at the board acting as investigators and leading the investigation.  As the game progresses, those students at their seats can make note of the clues and offer conjectures as to what the clues reveal about the death.

Tips: Because of the subject matter, this game probably isn’t appropriate for students under the age of 10.  I recommend playing through the game yourself to decide if it is appropriate for your age group.  Older students will enjoy playing investigator!

Please leave a comment and share how you are using Death in Rome in your classroom!

Comments (2)

[…] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Shelly S Terrell, ktenkely, Beth O'Connor, Thomas Baker, Teresa Heithaus and others. Teresa Heithaus said: @ktenkely Thank-you for the link on Death in Rome. Has my wheels turning! http://bit.ly/9oM1KQ […]

[…] iLearn Technology suggest ways in which the game might be integrated into your teaching: “Death in Rome is a fantastic exercise in critical thinking, reasoning, and deduction.  Students will learn about ancient Rome, using clues to solve a mystery, and find out how engaging and interesting history can be.  Death in Rome would make a great partner activity.  Students can work together in teams to solve the crime.  When each team has cracked the case, they can share the strategy they used and the clues that tipped them off to the solution.  If you don’t have access to a lab setting, solve the case as a class using a projector or interactive whiteboard.  Students can take turns at the board acting as investigators and leading the investigation.  As the game progresses, those students at their seats can make note of the clues and offer conjectures as to what the clues reveal about the death.” […]

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