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National Geographic Forces of Nature

What it is: Our fifth graders are going to be reading stories about extreme nature next week.  To build background knowledge about extreme nature, I was on a hunt for some sites that would teach them about different natural occurrences and include an interactive where they could explore the occurrence first hand.  National Geographic has a great collection called Forces of Nature. Here students can explore a natural forces lab where they learn about the extreme nature. Students can learn about tornadoes, volcanoes, hurricanes, and earthquakes.  Students learn what the force of nature is, what causes them, their characteristics, the damage that they do, how they are forecasted, and then have the opportunity to actually create the force of nature virtually.  Students can also view an interactive map that shows hot sites where the forces of nature occur, and read case studies of actual events. How to integrate National Geographic Forces of Nature into the classroom: Set up a science or reading center where students can read and learn about each force of nature.  Allow students to interact with the activities to control their own tornadoes, volcanoes, hurricanes, and earthquakes.  Choose a “weather forecaster” for the class.  Using an interactive whiteboard or projector have the forecaster change the elements that lead to the force of nature.  Ask students at their seats predict what will happen with the force of nature.  Are conditions right for a tornado/hurricane/earthquake/eruption?  The forecaster will test out conditions to find out what happens.  Ask students to explain the occurrence and why their predictions were correct or incorrect.  If you don’t have access to an interactive whiteboard or projector, students could complete this activity in partners on the classroom computers.  This is an excellent visual aid for the science classroom, it is like an interactive text book. Tips: National Geographic has a great Forces of Nature photo gallery (found below the interactive) where students can see high quality photos of tornadoes, hurricanes, volcanoes, and earthquakes.  The earthquake interactive is a timely addition to the classroom with the recent earthquake in Haiti.  This is a great way for kids to understand exactly how the earthquake occurred. Leave a comment and share how you are using National Geographic Forces of Nature  in your classroom.

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Timelapse: 3 decades of photo imagery of the world

Posted by admin | Posted in Analyze, Evaluate, History, Language Arts, Middle/High School, Primary Elementary, Science, Secondary Elementary, Social Studies, Understand (describe, explain), video, Virtual Field Trips, Websites | Posted on 20-01-2014

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Timelapse: a satellite veiw of the earth (iLearn Technology)

What it is:  Timelapse is an incredible visual satellite timeline powered by Google.  Timelapse is about as close as you can get to a time machine, if that time machine hovered above the earth and gave you a bird’s eye view of development and change. Students can choose from some highlighted Timelapse views including: Las Vegas, Dubai, Shanghai, Oil Sands, Mendenhall Glacier, Wyoming Coal, Columbia Glacier, and Lake Urmia.  Alternatively, students can use the search box to view a satellite timelapse of any place in the world. Students can change the speed of the timelapse, pause the satellite imagery, and zoom in or zoom out.  The imagery begins in 1984 and goes through 2012.

How to use Timelapse in your classroom: Timelapse would be a fantastic way to begin an inquiry unit. The site itself sparks lots of questions.  Depending on the location, students may inquire into climate change, history, development, expansion, human impact on land, satellites, etc. Timelapse could also be used in science classes and history classes. This is a great tool for students to use to analyze and evaluate visual data.

Timelapse would be a neat way to explore history of the world from a completely different perspective.  Students could use Timelapse as a creative writing prompt to imagine the world from a new perspective. What changes when you aren’t down in the midst of life on earth? Do problems appear different? Does success get measured differently?

Tips: Below the Timelapse map, students can read about how satellites are used to capture the imagery they are exploring. Well worth the read!  It is also separated into “Chapters” that each tell a larger story about the featured Timelapses.

 

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Comments (1)

Thank you for sharing your blog. I never knew that it was called a timelapse. This is a great idea to be used in the classroom.

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