Education World ® Technology Center: Get Outta Class With Virtual Field Trips

Education World ® Technology Center: Get Outta Class With Virtual Field Trips

Directly from the website: You look outside the classroom window and see yet another in a long string of gloomy days. Inside the classroom, restless students seem mired in malaise. It must be time for a field trip! No money, you say, for busses or admission fees. No time for travel? Then why not a virtual field trip? The Web provides the resources; you provide the fun. Every day is a beautiful day for a virtual field trip! Included: Tips for creating your own virtual field trips!

This obviously is geared for the classroom, but I think taking a virtual field trip (VFT) would be fun for anyone!

This article has lots of links to existing VTFs!

One of the links directs you to Tramline where you can visit lots of places virtually or create your own field trip to share with others. They also have an interesting article on VFTS vs. WebQuests.

I created a WebQuest on the Industrial Revolution in my Technology for Instruction course this past spring. If you visit this WebQuest, please keep in mind that it is still a work-in-progress. I am intrigued by the idea of VFTs and will definitely explore this further.

What are you waiting for? Go EXPLORE!

What cool tech tools are you using today?


Flashback Friday: 1989

Big Glasses and even bigger bangs!
Oh yeah!

My little brother, Corey, sure looks happy.
Not so sure about the rest of us.


Cool Mornings, Skyways, Gyms, and Baptisms

This week's gratitude list:

Cool breezes in the morning
Perfect for taking my Sallie for a run before work!

Minneapolis Skyway System

Nothing beats the skyway system when it's raining...or snowing...
or too cold...or too hot!
PLUS, they look really cool, too.

L.A. Fitness
Nothing like money to be the perfect motivator for working-out!
I'm grateful it is meeting our needs.

Suzanne's Baptism

My niece turned 8 on Saturday, and I'm happy I was
around to attend her baptism.
That's my dad (her grandpa) in the picture with her.

What are you thankful for today?


Who Wants to Color???


So, today's Tech Tuesday is kind of lame.

BUT...if you're a parent (or anyone who likes to color), who may enjoy this website:

Ivy's Coloring Page Search Engine

You can search for any type of coloring sheets. Say you want to print out something to color for the 4th of July, just enter "4th of July" into the search field and VOILA! Lots of cool pictures to color!

I recently had to search for Graduation, Father's Day, and Birthday pictures. I thought the site was pretty useful in helping me out.

I hope you will, too.

What cool tech tools are you using today?


Flashback Fridays: June Nieces

This was back in 2002.
The year Suzane was born.
She'll be 8 tomorrow.
Holding the new bundle of joy is her big cousin, Selena.
Aren't they just adorable?!


Thankful Thursdays

Man, it's been quite a day!

Work was busy and LONG and tiring. My run this morning left me with a nasty headache most of the day. Blah!


There's got to be something to be thankful for, right?!

How about my cutie-patootie, Sallie Sue?

This is her through my dad's screened porch. Who couldn't love that face? She's adorable and such a great snuggler. She always makes me happy.

Or my awesome YW Camp Leaders
They did such a great job last night at our pre-camp meeting, teaching the girls First Aid.
They make me excited for camp.

And I can't forget my wonderful husband
I know I listed him last week, but I'm especially grateful for him when I'm feeling grouchy.

What are you thankful for today?

Morning run

So...Jeff and I joined the gym back in April. We've been going pretty diligently a few times a week. Pretty good, right?


And, my weight loss has definitely stagnated. I keep telling myself that I'm building muscle, and muscle weighs more than fat, but...


Time to start incorporating more cardio. Since we generally focus on weight training when we go to the gym together, and I don't want to spend my entire evening at the gym, I decided I needed to push myself to run in the morning before work.

So, I set my alarm for 5a.m.

After snoozing 3 times, I finally decided around 5:22 that I simply didn't want to snooze anymore. I didn't necessary want to get up and go for a run, either. BUT I knew that if I just turned off my alarm and didn't get out of bed, I would sleep and sleep and sleep and be way late for work.

So, I got up and ran 2.5 miles.

It was a beautiful morning for a run! Sallie certainly enjoyed herself, too.

Unfortunately, now I am still hot and sweaty (yes, even after taking a shower). Of course it doesn't help that I have about 1.4 miles to walk to work and then I took the stairs to the 7th floor.

I know I shouldn't complain, because in about 2 hours I'll probably be grabbing that sweatshirt!

What's your favorite time of day to run / exercise??


Tech Tuesday: GeoGreeting

You have to check out this very cool website.

Basically, you type in a message, and it finds satellite images of buildings around the world that look like each letter in your message. Then it generates a link that you can copy and email to your friends. There is also an option to send as an e-card or a MySpace e-card.

Here's an example link I created this morning.

If you wanted to take this a step further with your kids or students, you could then click on a letter to view the building on a Google map.


Flashback Friday: Grandma Gertie

Gertrude Wilma Ausbern (Bird-Wilson)
December 22, 1920 - June 5, 2010
This is a picture of my grandma holding me at Christmastime 1979.

This picture was taken at my high graduation party.
My grandma is the redhead on the left.
This is a 5-generation picture; the baby is my sister's 2nd child, AJ.

Yesterday, I attended my grandma Gertie's funeral. It was a very nice service. One of my cousins, who was unable to attend, wrote a letter that one of his brothers read. It was really touching to hear about all of his memories about Grandma Gertie.

My grandma lived in AZ most of my life, so I didn't have the opportunity to spend much time with her. It was wonderful to learn so many interesting things about her yesterday. And to hear so many fun stories. She will be missed, and I wish I'd gotten to know her better.


Thankful Thursdays

Family Home Evening Group -- Jeff and I initiated an FHE group a few weeks ago with some couples in our ward. We've only met twice so far (had to take off Memorial Day), but it's such a blessing to gather with others to have a gospel-centered discussion.  I know that we'll get to learn a lot about the gospel and one another!

My husband -- This past week at FHE one question that was posed was "What do you appreciate about your spouse?" It really got me thinking about the things that Jeff does for me. Here is a short list of a few of the reasons I love him so much.
  • He is so supportive the things I want...my dreams.
  • He is a great storyteller, and he has so many fun stories to tell.
  • He is always willing to go do things with me that aren't necessarily enjoyable.
  • He helps keep me informed about world events and politics (topics I normally do not enjoy)
  • He always treats me with love and respect and would never talk bad about me to others.
My Grandma Gertie -- I wasn't particularly close with her, but she still holds a special place in my heart. She lived far away in AZ most of my life. She passed away this past Saturday, and I am off her to funeral this morning. She leaves behind  8 kids, and many grandkids, great-grandkids, and, I think, even a couple of great-great-grandkids. She lived to be 89 years old. I remember her wild red hair. Tomorrow's Flashback Friday will be devoted to her. So check back for a couple of pictures.

My family -- We can really rally for a funeral. It's too bad that such a sad occasion brings us together. It's a time when I get to see so many cousins that I generally only see at funerals. Does this happen in other families as well?

I could go on and on about other things I'm thankful for, I'm sure, but it's nearly time to go.

What are you thankful for today?


Tech Tuesday: Prezi

I recently learned about Prezi in my technology course last semester. I like to describe it has PowerPoint on steroids. I believe they market it as the only zooming presentation tool. The zooming feature makes boring slide presentations come alive with movement. On their home page, there is a great video introducing you to this tool, if you're unfamiliar with it.

I created a couple Prezi presentations for my class last semester. Overall, I found that it was really user-friendly. For someone who tends to be a bit of a perfectionist, it can, however, be a little trying. There is no real good way to get text to line up perfectly, so the more abstract thinker will probably enjoy this tool a little better than someone a bit more concrete. It did teach me to try and let some of those things go. Once I was able to do that, I really came to enjoy this software!

There are a few other quirks, but they have a great Learn section and manual to help you along your way. There is also a showcase where you can look at presentations created by others. Some are even available for reuse, which means you can save a copy to your page and edit it to fit your needs or topics. How great is that?!

Here are a couple of Prezis that I've enjoyed. They are particularly related to education/teaching.

Thoughts on Using Prezi as Teaching Tool by Paul Hill

Playing to Learn by Maria Andersen

Here are the two Prezis I created for my class.

This first one is the first that I created. I'm taking an independent study course on Environmental Studies right now, so I created this to help me understand and learn more about Natural Selection. As a future teacher, I could use this in my classroom to help students understand this Theory as well.

Theory of Evolution by Natural Selection

Ok. One more, and I'll let you get back to your regularly scheduled day. :-)

This Prezi I created as part of my final project in my technology course. My idea was to begin a unit with a timeline that showed specifics events. I would then break the class into groups and have each group choose (or perhaps I would assign) an event on the timeline to elaborate one. Each group would then collaborate on that topic and add it to the class Prezi. I've created an example of what an elaboration might look like. I'd be willing to bet that my students would be far more insightful and creative than I was!

Early Civilization in Afroeurasia to 450 BCE

I tried to embed these presentation, but they didn't look so good on my blog.


Flashback Friday: High School Graduation

It's graduation season, so I thought it would be perfect to flashback to my high school graduation.
When I found my photo album and starting flipping through it, it hit me...

Oh WOW!!

15 years ago TODAY I graduated from high school.

I can't believe it!
It hardly seems that long ago.
I mean, I can't possibly be that old, can I?!

Here are a few shots of me and my closest friends from that momentous day.
We're so full of hope - looking forward to our bright futures!

Jill, Me
Before commencement at Jill's grandma's

Jill, Me
Hugging after commencement

Aimee, Me, Jill
After commencement

Angie, Me
After commencement

I have to admit, I got a little weepy-eyed looking through my photo album (and writing this post).
What good times we had that weekend!

Click here to see my Facebook album with more pictures from this weekend.


Thankful Thursday


Who isn't thankful for eggs? They're yummy! They're easy to prepare! They're so good for you. Visit this website for more incredible facts about eggs.

My sister
Last Friday, she and her husband met me for lunch - their treat. Gotta love free food! She is one of the most thoughtful people I know. She brought me some rolling pin rings just because I was always bugging her to borrow hers. They're fantastic!

Rolling pin rings
Don't know what they are? You put them on your rolling pin, so the dough you roll out is the perfect thickness and evenly rolled. Makes rolling out pie dough and sugar cookies a cinch.

Full cupboards
We stocked up last night, and it feels so good to have yummy food just waiting to be prepared and consumed.

Last night's YW activity
It turned out so awesome! I'll post specifics later, but basically the YW were paired into missionary companionships and sent on a mission where they created a weekly meal plan, created a monthly budget, taught a missionary discussion, memorized a scripture, and went door-to-door. I think everyone involved really enjoyed it.

What are you thankful for today?


Tech Tuesday: Flashcard Machine

Here's a great online tool I found -- especially for the end of the year as finals are approaching.

Flashcard Machine

This is great for students, teachers, or really anyone who wants to create nice and easy flashcards. It's free to sign-up and use.
  • You can create all kinds of flashcard sets.
  • You can study multiple sets at a time. For example, if you'd created a set for each chapter or unit, then you could combine them to study for a comprehensive final.
  • You can collaborate with others in creating and/or studying your sets.
  • You can include images and audio.
  • Sets can be printed for offline studying.
  • You can search the public flashcard database for interesting topics to expand your knowledge base.
  • There's even an ipod app.
Let me know what you think about this site. Would you ever use it or suggest it to a student or teacher you know?


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