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The Why Files

          What it is:  Colorado has had some extreme weather conditions in the past week.  With tornadoes, rain, rainbows, and hail, The Why Files seemed like a fitting site to highlight today.  The Why Files bring science to life virtually.  Students can make rainbows, control a tornado, play with lightning, and build a snowflake.  If only the real weather was this easy to control!  The Why Files begin each interactive with a brief “why” of how the weather occurrence works, students can read all about the occurrence and even get a link where they can learn more.  The fun starts when the students enter the interactive where they can control the weather. How to integrate The Why Files into the classroom:  The Why Files are amazing interactives that will help your students to better understand the science behind weather.  This is a great site to use with an interactive whiteboard, invite students to take turns interacting with the weather.  Read the paragraph before the interactive as a class.  After the students have ‘controlled’ the weather, go back to the information page and follow the link to additional information.  Your students will want to know more after playing with the interactive!  The Why Files makes a great science center on classroom comupters while students are learning the science behind weather.  Students can visit the center in teams and take notes in an observation journal recording their experiences about controlling the weather.    Tips:  Check out some of the other goodies on the site: “The Why Files produces a new story each week, alternating longer features with shorter shorties. We also post a series of interactive science animations, the ever-popular “Cool Science Images,” and a series of Teacher Activity Pages linked to the national science teaching standards. Eager to explain the science behind the news, our home page reprises older stories that become relevant to the headlines.” Leave a comment and tell us how you are using The Why Files in your classroom.

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Internet panhandling to change education

Posted by admin | Posted in education reform | Posted on 04-10-2012

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Okay, here is the thing, we (the collective we) have exactly 25 days to raise $83,570.  This number represents change. This number represents personalized learning for our kids. This number represents revolution.

$83,570.

It is big. But not that big. Not that impossible.  We can do this. One dollar at a time.  When you view this campaign you will see suggested donation levels beginning at $5 and going all the way to $5,000.  Those are merely suggestions.  If we all take a minute out of our day, chip in one dollar, spread the word to one other person, this project is completed in no time.  Are we willing to give up a cup of coffee (and a cheap one at that!) to make education better for all?

We often wax poetic about changing education. This, right here, is your opportunity to really do it.  I wish I had a trust fund hiding out somewhere that could make this happen.  That just isn’t the case.  So here I am, shamelessly asking you for a dollar.  Kind of like an internet panhandler.

We have 25 days to do this. Make the choice right now to chip in click here:  The Learning Genome Project

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