“ A screencast is a video recording of what’s happening on your computer monitor, often with annotations and/or narration. It can be simple or sophisticated, anything from a whiteboard presentation t…”
Via Maggie Verster
Teamwork and collaboration are bywords in education today, as they are in contemporary workplaces in all fields. More than ever, our daily tasks, our goals, and our overall performance are shaped and evaluated in collaborative settings, through peer and supervisory feedback. And it’s easy to agree that feedback can be a powerful tool for growth. Then why is it so hard to give feedback, and often even harder to hear it? Why do we feel that feedback misses the mark — that it’s generic or irrelevant, or, worse, that it’s undermining, or threatening?
Nicole Masureik's insight:
Great article on IQMS for teachers - how to do it right!
This confirms what researchers have suspected with mounting evidence about harms caused by the virus.
Federal health officials confirmed Wednesday that the Zika virus causes a rare birth defect and other severe fetal abnormalities, marking a turning point in an epidemic that has spread to nearly 40 countries and territories in the Americas and elsewhere.
Scientists at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention conducted a careful review of existing research and agreed that the evidence was conclusive, Director Thomas Frieden said. It is the first time a mosquito-borne virus has been linked to congenital brain defects.
"It is now clear, and CDC has concluded, that the virus causes microcephaly," Frieden said. CDC is launching more studies to determine whether children with that rare condition, which is characterized at birth by an abnormally small head, represent the "tip of the iceberg of what we could see in damaging effects on the brain and other developmental problems."
We all thought as much, but how horrible to have it confirmed. My heart goes out to all those parents whose babies are affected, to the babies themselves, and to their extended families. What a tragedy for all concerned!
Published on Feb 3, 2016 Research conducted in London has determined that some of the bacteria growing in men's beards have antibiotic properties. The discovery is important at a time when the overuse of man-made antibiotics is making pathogenic bacteria strains increasingly resistant to treatment.
Studying is a necessary activity that few enjoy. The key to good study is organisation. An ad-hoc approach to studying may seem like you are getting things covered but in the long run you are likely to miss important topics. By taking a formatted and structured route to your study plan, you will likely be more relaxed and feel more prepared for examinations when they come around. With anything in life, accepting help is a good idea and in the case of studying, you can gain great help by utilising smartphone and tablet apps which will help to increase your efficiency. This guide from Study Medicine Europe gives a useful guide on apps that may enhance your studying efforts. Some are free and some are paid versions and they are split up according to different goals. Check it out below!
The term "design thinking" is often attached to maker spaces and STEM labs. However, design thinking is bigger than STEM. It begins with the premise of tapping into student curiosity and allowing them to create, test and re-create until they eventually ship what they made to a real audience (sometimes global but often local). Design thinking isn't a subject or a topic or a class. It's more of way of solving problems that encourages risk-taking and creativity.
Design thinking is a flexible framework for getting the most out of the creative process. It is used in the arts, in engineering, in the corporate world, and in social and civic spaces. You can use it in every subject with every age group. It works when creating digital content or when building things with duct tape and cardboard.
If a kid has been pushed to a point where she’s acting out in order to get negative attention, the problem is far bigger than you. You know that, right? I didn’t when I was a young teacher, but when this reality dawned on me, it was a game changer. Realizing that it wasn’t about me gave me enough space to breath a bit before I reacted.
It’s not about you either, I’ll bet. If it is, it might say something about how much the kid who is making you crazy cares about you.
Sometimes, they act out to get your attention.
Sometimes, it’s the only way they know.
Sometimes, admitting what they really think or feel or need requires a level of vulnerability they just aren’t able to conjure.
So, don’t call students out in front of other people. Don’t point out their errors, don’t name their flaws, and by all means, don’t cut them down with your sarcasm. Try to get to the root of the problem, instead. Try asking yourself a few questions.
The Columbia team, which includes research engineer Daniel Sims BS'14 and postdoctoral researcher Yonghao Yue, designed and fabricated a flexible lens array that adapts its optical properties when the sheet camera is bent. This optical adaptation enables the sheet camera to produce high quality images over a wide range of sheet deformations. Sims will present the work at the International Conference on Computational Photography (ICCP) at Northwestern University in Evanston, IL, May 13 to 15.
"Cameras today capture the world from essentially a single point in space," says Nayar. "While the camera industry has made remarkable progress in shrinking the camera to a tiny device with ever increasing imaging quality, we are exploring a radically different approach to imaging. We believe there are numerous applications for cameras that are large in format but very thin and highly flexible."
If such an imaging system could be manufactured cheaply, like a roll of plastic or fabric, it could be wrapped around all kinds of things, from street poles to furniture, cars, and even people's clothing, to capture wide, seamless images with unusual fields of view. This design could also lead to cameras the size of a credit card that a photographer could simply flex to control its field of view.
If you aren't already using Google Chrome as your web browser, I strongly suggest you dig in and give it a try. In addition to ubiquitous access to your open tabs and bookmarks, there are also the excellent extensions and the omnipotent OmniBox.
Nicole Masureik's insight:
This has a lot of interesting ways to customise the "url bar", which is now actually an omni box - even to the point of adding Calendar events to your Google calendar! Way cool!
Some of my boarding school colleagues have a frenzied start to the day. Overseeing morning roll call in a fog of morning breath, checking that all the boys are present and correct, making sure they are dressed correctly, clean shaven, hair suitably brushed and off to breakfast. These days it also involves dispensing large quantities…
Nicole Masureik's insight:
And here's part two on the blog post about slowing down education. Very helpful ideas at the end.
You may have heard about all the cool things 3D printers can do. If you’re a math teacher, maybe you’ve thought about letting your students make their own manipulatives or get hands-on in geometry with 3D solids. If you’re an economics or business teacher, perhaps you’ve considered assigning students a project to design, market and sell their own 3D-printed products. Or maybe you’re a science teacher interested in exploring 3D models of cells, atoms or DNA with your students.
Wait! Slow down. Before you jump into purchasing and integrating this new gadget into your classroom, take a moment to consider the logistics and realities of becoming a 3D printer early adopter. Here’s a basic FAQ I’ve developed based on my own experiences and extensive research into classroom 3D printing.
About two decades ago The MIT Media lab introduced the concept of block-based programming. The idea was to develop an interface that allowed computer programs to be built by simply dragging and dropping puzzle blocks to represent complex programming constructs and commands. With this new method for teaching and learning computer science, the hugely popular Scratch platform was born. This approach lowered the bar for experimenting with programmatic thinking, making it possible for students to create interactive animations and small games without writing a single line of code. This simple concept removed the need to learn the syntax of a formal programming language, and made teaching and learning the basics of computer science accessible to younger learners and to teachers with no formal coding background.
Bioengineers invent a way to harvest energy from water evaporating at room temperature. It's an engine with living parts.
It might not look like much, but this plastic box is a fully functioning engine—and one that does something no other engine has ever done before. Pulling energy seemingly out of thin air, it harvests power from the ambient evaporation of room-temperature water. No kidding.
A team of bioengineers led by Ozgur Sahin at Columbia University have just created the world's first evaporation-driven engine, which they report today in the journalNature Communications. Using nothing more than a puddle of resting water, the engine, which measures less than four inches on each side, can power LED lights and even drive a miniature car. Better yet, Sahin says, the engine costs less than $5 to build.
"This is a very, very impressive breakthrough," says Peter Fratzl, a biomaterial researcher at the Max-Planck Institute of Colloids and Interfaces in Potsdam, Germany who was not involved in the research. "The engine is essentially harvesting useful amounts of energy from the infinitely small and naturally occurring gradients [in temperature] near the surface of water. These tiny temperature gradients exist everywhere, even in some of the most remote places on Earth."
To understand how the engine works, it helps to understand unique material behind it. The key to Sahin's astonishing new invention is a new material that Sahin calls HYDRAs (short for hygroscopy-driven artificial muscles). HYDRAs are essentially thin, muscle-like plastic bands that contract and expand with tiny changes in humidity. A pinky finger-length HYDRA band can cycle through contraction and expansion more than a million times with only a slight, and almost negligible, degradation of the material. "And HYDRAs change shape in really quite a dramatic way: they can almost quadruple in length," Sahin says.
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