I am preparing some lessons on research for the new year 7 students. Knowledge about how make internet searches more efficient is something that students from all year levels could refresh from time to time.
We always seem to begin with Google as it is the one everyone seems to know best. Most students use Google almost exclusively but wikipedia and Youtube are also high up on their lists. We all can see how Google has changed since it was first developed. Some things are very obvious and others less so. It is very easy to get into a rut and not notice some changes. It is always interesting to see how much the year 7 students know. Many have a very basic level of knowledge but are very confident they know how to search. Many teachers seem to assume that students are proficient at searching the web but many
I usually ask them some basic questions that gradually show how well they can narrow down searches. It is interesting how many hands go down as I ask my various questions. After this initial introduction they always want to learn how to do the things I ask about.
I also ask the students put the icon for the Google “advanced search” on their favourites tool bar as we go through the lesson. The fields shown there are useful for reminding the students about how they can narrow down their searches.
The options that Google has on its simple search page has not been noticed by very many students let alone used by them. The tab “search tools ” can be really useful for them and they don’t have to be on the advanced search page.
You can choose:
- “The Web”- drops down the option of Australian sites or the whole web,
- “Any time” – once clicked, allows you to search from information from an hour ago to a year ago or to customize your date range.
- “All results” – is the list that I think offers some of the best options to refine searches. The option which has especially interested some teachers who work in student support (for students who find classroom work more difficult than most) is the reading level option. I talk about using it depending on whether or not you are new to a subject or already have some understanding.
If you choose this option, it breaks down the level of difficulty on one of these will into 3 types: basic, intermediate and advanced. Clicking on any one of these will give you the sites that Google has designated fit that description.
In an advanced search these can be combined in many more a variety of ways rather than having to choose just one or another.
I can see the “search tools” option in Google being used quite a bit this year although I must not fail to mention InstaGrok, which is a visual search engine that offers the option to choose the level of difficulty as well as a number of other great features. I wrote a post about Instagrok last year but since then can be used in Explorer
- Google Educast | EdReach The Google Educast, hosted by the Google Certified Teachers, features a weekly roundup of the newest Ed tools from Google, highlighting best practices using Google tools, and further highlighting the impact that these tools have on the classroom, schools, and school districts.tools
- mikefisher821’s LiveBinder Shelf A lot of good livebinders on many 2.0 topics for schools/education
- The Teens Are All Right: 2011’s Top 5 YA Novels : NPR
- Australian political cartooning – a rich tradition – australia.gov.au “Australia has a strong and vibrant history of political cartooning. Since the 1830s, when political cartoons were first featured in Australian newspapers, they have provided satirical, witty or humorous comment on political and public affairs, social customs, fashions, sports events and personalities.”
- Surfboard // Experience The Web In A Flippable Newspaper-Like Format Surfboard is a neat little service that displays any website in a flippable newspaper-like display. To use Surfboard all you have to do is enter the url of your favorite website and click “get surfing.”
- Motivating Boy Writers: A Multi-Genre Approach | NWP Digital Is
- Hubii Hubii is a new website featuring a map of newspapers from around the world. Visitors can locate online newspapers by clicking on the placemarks on the map. Registered users can subscribe to the online editions of the newspapers they find. When you subscribe (it’s free) to a newspaper in Hubii it is added to your Hubii Mapazine in which you can read the newspapers to which you are subscribed.
- Nobel Prize website-All Educational Productions The site has an educational games site designed to help students learn about subjects in the areas of Physics, Chemistry, Medicine, Literature, Peace, and Economics. In all there are twenty-nine interactive games for students to play. Each of the science-related games and the economics game is based upon the research of Nobel Prize winners. The literature and peace games are based upon concepts central to the work of Nobel Prize winners in those fields.
- Download free textbooks online Bookboon is a free service offering free full-length textbooks, travel guides, and business books in digital form. The textbook section of Bookboon offers more than 500 digital textbooks. On Bookboon there are etextbooks available for twenty-five subjects, but the bulk of the etextbooks are focused on Economics, Engineering, and IT.
- Rubrics for Assessment A collection of rubrics for assessing portfolios, cooperative learning, research process/ report, PowerPoint, podcast, oral presentation, web page, blog, wiki, and other web 2.0 projects.
- How Video Games Helped My Kids Get Along | Common Sense Media
- For Libraries and Publishers, an E-Book Tug of War – NYTimes.com