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iKnow Social Learning

  What it is:   Wow, I just spent two hours playing on and reviewing this site and could have spent the rest of my day here!  iKnow Social Learning is a social networking study tool created by Cerego in Japan.  The site brings social networking to studying and learning in a really inventive way.  Students (or you) sign up and are asked what languages you know, and what languages you want to learn.  Then you are led through a short questionnaire about your interests.  Study recommendations are made based on the questionnaire.  Courses are available to enroll in (all free) to help you study and learn.  The courses are created by Cerego and its partners or by other users.  After logging in and filling out the introductory information, you are taken to a personal homepage.  The homepage shows courses that you are enrolled in, your profile, friends, progress, a message center, and any items created by you.  Courses are personalized language learning tools.  Courses are geared for learning English and Japanese with more languages coming soon.   Current English courses created by Cerego include vocabulary development, and SAT study prep.  Courses created by users include everything from introduction to binary to the first presidential debate speech.  There are three modes of study options for each course.  The iKnow study section says the word aloud, gives the definition, and part of speech (if applicable to the course) and then uses the word in a sentence, and gives students the opportunity to practice spelling the word.  After the study session, students are quizzed on the vocabulary.  The next study section is called Dictation.  In this section a sentence using the vocabulary is said aloud, students type the sentence (using correct spelling) as it is said.  This is great for memorization, spelling, and those typing skills.  The last study section is called Flash Study and provides students with a beat the clock type game to improve speed and accuracy.  The current provided courses are appropriate for intermediate English language learners, and high school and college students.  However, iKnow allows for users to create courses (called lists).  With the ability to create lists, the iKnow study site could be used as early as second or third grade and up.   As a teacher, you can create lists for your students to study based on your curriculum.  The lists are very simple to create and you can attach sound, video, and images from Flickr Creative Commons (integrated) or upload your own images.   Students have access to all courses they have enrolled in, an online journal, and their study results.  Each course shows who created the course or list, the level of study, the number of items to learn in the course, the recommended length of study, and the privacy setting on the course.  After a student enrolls in the course, their progress is tracked to provide students with exactly the practice they need.  iKnow has the capability of connecting and integrating with other social networking platforms like Twitter, Skype, Delicious and Facebook (and a substantial list of others!)  The high school, college, and professional age group will appreciate the integration capabilities.  As you can tell by the length of this post, I am extraordinarily impressed with this site and the study options it opens up for students (and teachers!).     How to integrate iKnow Social Learning into the classroom:  iKnow Social Learning is the best study tool I have seen in a while!  I love the way that it encourages students to study together, challenge each other, and create solid study habits.  iKnow Social Learning is an amazing way to learn and taps into multiple learning styles with each study session.  Auditory, visual, and kinesthetic learners will all benefit from this site!  Because teachers can create lists (courses) of study, you can create interactive study guides for your students based on your curriculum.  The current courses on iKnow Social Learning are too difficult for the elementary and middle school crowd.  I created a list of my own for third grade vocabulary, it was simple to put together and students would benefit from the properly leveled guide.  Younger students may not use the social aspect of the site as much, but the study options would be perfect for creating and setting up on a classroom computer,  as a center or to use with students in a computer lab setting, or even just to suggest for home use.  The layout of the study sessions makes it ideal for vocabulary words, math vocabulary (or expanded notation), history facts, spelling practice, learning a foreign language, and science vocabulary.  I think that iKnow Social Learning would also be a great place for PLN (professional learning networks) to challenge each other, collaborate, and learn.  Personally, I think with this setup I could know Italian by Christmas   This is a really incredible tool, I can’t say enough about it!   Tips:   Right now the language options for iKnow are English and Japanese but Cerego has just opened up development for 188 additional languages, many more language options will be available shortly.  Sign up for an account today (you can even sign in with your Google or Yahoo account) to check out my course called 3rd Grade Vocabulary.  You can also add me as a friend: ktenkely.  My warning to you, this is addictive learning! Leave a comment and tell us how you are using iKnow Social Learning in your classroom.

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Science of Everyday Life

Posted by admin | Posted in Analyze, Evaluate, Knowledge (remember), Middle/High School, Primary Elementary, Science, Secondary Elementary, Teacher Resources, Technology, Understand (describe, explain), video, Websites | Posted on 16-05-2013

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What it is:
Discovery Education and 3M have partnered to bring the science of everyday life into your classroom.  This fantastic collection of resources is for students in kindergarten through twelfth grade.  On the site you will find videos and interactives that help kids learn about the science around them and make connections to what they are learning in school.  Lessons are inquiry based and encourage exploration in life science, physical science, earth science and technology/innovation.  Virtual labs are interactive flash-based labs where students can discover more about science like wind energy.  At the Innovation HQ portion of the site, students can travel through time and look at innovations that they use in their every day life and “meet” 3M scientists. On the Student page, students can see a young inventors hall of fame.

How to integrate Science of Everyday Life into the classroom:  The Science of Everyday Life is packed FULL of great videos, lesson ideas, virtual interactives and student activities.  I really appreciate that the approach to lessons is inquiry based!  The lessons include great resources and encourage students to ask questions and dig deeper.  The virtual investigations and labs are also really well done.

Content is separated out by grade level, quickly find exactly what best fits your classroom needs!

The travel through time feature is really neat for students to explore.  This could be done as a class using a projector-connected computer or interactive whiteboard or used as a center exploration or individual activity in a 1:1 or lab setting.  Split students into smaller teams or have them explore a specific time period independently.  The timeline gives some basic information, and would be a great launching point for further investigation.  Students could turn this into a larger project where they connect the innovation from history with innovations today.  What learning had to take place in the past, in order for the innovation that we have today?  This would make a great compare/contrast activity for students.

Because Discovery Education is involved, you can anticipate high quality videos and related resources.

Tips:  The resources and interactives on the Science of Everyday Life are largely Java and Flash based.  If you are running these resources off an iPad, you will want to use an app like Rover (which allows you to view Flash), Photon, iSwifter, etc.

I’ve been nominated for a Bammy Award for Educational Blogger.  I’d appreciate your vote to help spread the word about iLearn Technology.  Vote here.  Thank you for your continued support!!

Leave a comment and tell us how you are using  Science of Everyday Life in your classroom.

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