The Scout Report -- Volume 20, Number 33

The Scout Report -- Volume 20, Number 33

The Scout Report

August 29, 2014 -- Volume 20, Number 33

A Publication of Internet Scout
Computer Sciences Department, University of Wisconsin-Madison




Research and Education

  The Arts in Every Classroom Video Library: Teaching Dance
  ChemSpider
  The International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning
  Technology Integration
  Omaha Indian Music
  ERIC
  Community College Research Center
  Continuing Education

General Interest

  MOMA: Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: Japanese Art
  Digital Humanities Tool Box
  Australia Telescope National Facility
  Pictify
  Real Climate: Data Sources
  Beijing Through Sidney Gamble's Camera
  Silicon Valley
  Sci Show

Network Tools

  Privacy.IO
  Remind: Safe Classroom Communication

In the News

  Mysteries of the Maya Unearthed Deep in the Yucatan Jungle



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Research and Education

The Arts in Every Classroom Video Library: Teaching Dance

·http://www.learner.org/libraries/artsineveryclassroom/video3.html

Many teachers would love to incorporate dance into their classrooms. But how? This valuable site from Annenberg Learner answers exactly this question. It features the methods of two very different educators, one from Brooklyn and the other from New Orleans, who have found various ways to integrate dance into their lesson plans. The site is clearly organized, with sections such as People and Schools, which provides biographies of and interviews with the showcased teachers, and Who Should Watch, a brief overview of the target audience. Additionally, educators will want to peruse Activities and Discussion and Additional Resources for thought-provoking questions and helpful links to other Annenberg Learner sites and resources around the web. [CNH]


ChemSpider

·http://www.chemspider.com/

This astonishingly powerful, award-winning database from The Royal Society of Chemistry provides fast access to over 30 million chemical structures and properties, as well as nearly unlimited links and related information. For a quick introduction, go to the About page and watch the ten-minute introductory video. Then start searching! Simple searches expedite your exploration when you enter the trade name, synonym, or systematic name of the compound you wish to find. Conversely, you can input by Structure, with an innovative Edit Molecule function. Lastly, Advanced searches allow you to combine methods. In addition, the ChemSpider blog boasts frequent entries about the site and the field at large. [CNH]


The International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning

·http://www.irrodl.org/index.php/irrodl/index

Many experts believe distance learning will constitute a substantial slice of the higher education pie in the near future. Still, comparatively little research has been published on the topic. The International Review of Research in Open and Distance learning, a freely accessible e-journal based in Alberta, Canada, seeks to disseminate original research, theory, and best practice in open and distance learning worldwide. Special issues have covered such topics as "Open Education Resources: Opening Access to Knowledge" and "Towards a European Perspective on Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCS): The Past, the Present and the Future." Featuring dozens of accessible, empirical articles, this academic journal is a welcome resource for anyone interested in online learning. [CNH]


Technology Integration

·http://www.edutopia.org/technology-integration

Technology has transformed education, yet questions about how to best integrate it into the classroom persist. This comprehensive site from Edutopia seeks to answer a number of perennial quandaries. For instance, which tools are most helpful to students? How should those tools be used? What limits should be placed on access? Educators will want to begin with the site's Overview, which includes a well-produced five-minute introductory video. Next, the History section explores the last fifty years of integrating technology into the classroom, beginning with MIT professor, Seymour Papert. The Experts link features almost a dozen short articles by noted researchers in the field, and the Why section highlights reasons to integrate technology into your curriculum. Lastly, the Research link will take you to empirical studies from around the web. [CNH]


Omaha Indian Music

·http://www.loc.gov/teachers/classroommaterials/connections/omaha-indian-music/

This Library of Congress website houses the digitized Omaha Indian Music collection. Featuring a pithy Collection Overview and links to contextualizing elements, such as Historical Eras and Related Collections and Exhibits, the site makes accessible an important cultural tradition. Of course, the exhibit itself really shines. The multiformat ethnographic field collection contains dozens of wax cylinder recordings from the 1890s, as well as modern recordings of pow-wows and performances. Additionally, black and white photographs and contemporary films exhibit dances and celebrations, while interviews with tribal members elucidate the various cultural practices. [CNH]


ERIC

·http://eric.ed.gov/

Founded in 1964, the Educational Resources Information Center (ERIC) has been a powerful research support for half a century. The current iteration, an academic search engine, is elegant yet comprehensive, with two valuable, user-friendly tools. Use the Collections tab to search the dozens of educational journals indexed in ERIC's database. For instance, an entry of "cyberbullying" currently turns up 241 articles in 72 journals, with a list of referenced sources by publication date, descriptor, source, author, publication type, education level, and intended audience. Use the Thesaurus tab to expand and clarify keyword searches. [CNH]


Community College Research Center

·http://ccrc.tc.columbia.edu/

With the increasing cost of four-year colleges, as well as some stats that show wages of graduates from two-year colleges can outpace those with bachelor's degrees, community colleges are becoming more popular every year. The Community College Research Center at Columbia University has its finger on the pulse of this trend. With a refreshingly open source attitude, the center offers recently published articles for free download. Current topics include "Evaluating Your College's Readiness for Technology Adoption" and "The Effects of English as a Second Language Courses on Language Minority Community College Students," among many others. Educators and administers alike will benefit from this beautifully maintained and generously informative site. [CNH]


Continuing Education

·http://www.rand.org/topics/continuing-education.html

The Rand Corporation, host of this excellent site, defines continuing education as "postsecondary education that advances one's career or provides personal enrichment without leading to a degree." Visitors will find resources that vary in depth and accessibility, from terse blogs to complex journal articles ? all dedicated to the subject of continuing education. Additional resources include writings demarcated by author and by project, as well as edifying news releases outlining current research endeavors. Anyone curious about the cutting edge of continuing education should make a beeline to this visually-pleasing website. [CNH]


General Interest

MOMA: Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: Japanese Art

·http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hi/te_index.asp?i=10

Few cultures on earth can boast a history of art as sophisticated and variegated as Japan's. This show stopping collection from The Metropolitan Museum of Art traces Japanese art back to the Neolithic Jomon Culture (c.a. 10,500-c.a. 300 B.C.). Illuminating essays accompany all 38 segments of the collection. Of special interest are the pieces from the Asuka and Nara Periods (538-794), when Buddhism was introduced to Japan from China and Korea. Readers will also find much to savor in the Samurai and Zen Buddhism sections. For viewers drawn to Japan's globally influential modern design culture, the collection offers several satisfying pages of radically minimalist home and office d?cor. [CNH]


Digital Humanities Tool Box

·http://www.scoop.it/t/digital-humanities-tool-box

The Digital Humanities Tool Box, hosted on Scoop.It!, bills itself as a web site packed with "Links, ideas, and tools for humanities instructors." And that's exactly what it is. Curated by a history professor at Arizona State University (web name: Stillwater Humanities), the site "scoops" resources from around the web. Recent gems include articles like "History's Future" and "A Brief History of the Hashtag, and Other Unusual Punctuation Marks," as well as infographics (for example, "6 Ways Social Media Will Change in 2014") and blog entries (e.g. "What Digitization Will Do for the Future of Museums"). [CNH]


Australia Telescope National Facility

·http://www.atnf.csiro.au/

The Australia Telescope National Facility manages four large, state of the art radio telescopes in Southeast Australia. ATNF's web site is a complex configuration of resources for researchers, technicians, educators, and cosmology buffs. Amateur enthusiasts will want to navigate to the Outreach section, with its trove of photographs and educational materials. In particular, check out the Cosmic engine for senior students, an overview of past and current theories of the universe. Here you'll find modules such as Early Models of the Universe and The Lives of Stars. Also in Outreach, What is Radio Astronomy? provides a welcome overview of the technical basics of these impressive examples of modern technology. [CNH]


Pictify

·http://www.pictify.com/

If you love art, you will love Pictify. A cornucopia of paintings, sculptures, photographs, drawings, and other art mediums, this visually sundry site displays everything from cave paintings to graffiti art, from Picasso's drawings to photographs of the boy next door. Browse the site by Categories, Most Liked, Most Commented, Museums/Galleries, and Latest Posts. For instance, Berndnaut Smilde's 2012 photograph, "Nimbus II" has sparked 634 likes and dozens of comments. Then, to post your own favorite art, comment on the posts of others, and create your own albums, sign up for a free account. Pictify can also be useful in the classroom. Educators and students might use the site to create and share profiles, organize relevant artwork, and inspire online conversations. [CNH]


Real Climate: Data Sources

·http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/data-sources/

Looking for quick, trustworthy information on climate change? Look no further. This winner of the Scientific American Science and Technology Web Award delivers up-to-date, empirically solid articles, commentaries, and data sources about the global climate situation. To begin, click the Start Here link, and peruse articles divided by level of expertise. "For complete beginners," for instance, lists links to the National Center for Atmospheric Research and NASA, among others. "For those with some knowledge" includes links to 20 more advanced articles on climate change, while "Informed but in need of more detail" showcases actual reports from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. [CNH]


Beijing Through Sidney Gamble's Camera

·http://sites.duke.edu/sidneygamble

As secretary for the Beijing YMCA, Sidney Gamble made three trips to China between 1917 and 1932. During these visits, this Princeton-educated sociologist photographed such pivotal events as the Thanksgiving celebrations following the end of World War I and Sun Yat-sen's funeral. Duke University's thought-provoking exhibit presents dozens of Gamble's photographs, along with erudite essays contextualizing and problematizing Gamble's photographic journey into China's "class, commerce, gender, and transition to modernity." Special treats include Jason Tonio Woerner's essay on "Penetrating the Past" and Gamble's photographs of street scenes. [CNH]


Silicon Valley

·http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/films/silicon/

It is no exaggeration to say that the innovations of the Silicon Valley have shaped our world. This excellent episode from the PBS series, American Experience, provides insight into how the magic happened, starting in 1957 when eight brilliant physicists quit their day jobs at the Shockley Semiconductor Company ? and invented the microchip. Visitors will want to start with the Introduction, a first-rate synopsis of the early days of Silicon Valley. Next, click the Preview link for a teaser of the full-length film. A number of links feature clips from the documentary, and a full-length transcript may be downloaded free of cost. Also, offer your comments on the history of Silicon Valley in the Share Your Story section, and peruse the Timeline and the Photo Gallery. [CNH]


Sci Show

·https://www.youtube.com/user/scishow

The Sci Show, an entertaining series of quirky YouTube videos, tackles topics ranging from "How Do Polarized Sunglasses Work" to "Strong Interaction: The Four Fundamental Forces of Physics." Most episodes are less than five minutes long, but they pack a wallop of handy science info. Anyone short on time but long on big questions will benefit from the series. Episodes will be helpful to teachers and parents looking to spark enthusiasm in young minds. Viewers may want to start with recent episodes like "Today's Mass Extinction," "World's First See-Through Animal," and "How Do Animals Change Color?" before digging into the archives for gems like "The Truth About Gingers" and "The Science of Lying." [CNH]


Network Tools

Privacy.IO

·https://privacy.io/

Web privacy is big news. This affordable Virtual Private Network (VPN) service promises to "give you your privacy back." How does it work? Privacy.IO encrypts your data so that when you connect to your Internet Service Provider (ISP), your usage remains untraceable. You have full anonymity, with no logs kept. All operating systems are supported, including Windows, Apple, and Linux. [CNH]


Remind: Safe Classroom Communication

·https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/remind-safe-classroom-communication/id522826277?mt=8

Not just for teachers! This handy app allows organizers of all kinds to send safe, easy, and free one-way messages to groups and individuals. Phone numbers are kept private. Teachers, coaches, club leaders, and others use the service to schedule reminders, assignments, homework, assessments, and motivational messages directly to students', parents', and group members' phones. This app is designed for iPhone and iPad users running iOS 6.0 or later. [CNH]


In the News

Mysteries of the Maya Unearthed Deep in the Yucatan Jungle

Two Ancient Mayan Cities Discovered Deep in Mexican Jungle
http://www.nbcnews.com/science/science-news/two-ancient-mayan-cities-discovered-deep-mexican-jungle-n187231

Two ancient Mayan cities discovered deep in the Mexican jungle ? and the secretes they hold
http://www.nbcnews.com/science/science-news/two-ancient-mayan-cities-discovered-deep-mexican-jungle-n187231

Ancient Maya Cities Found in Jungle
http://news.discovery.com/history/archaeology/three-ancient-maya-cities-found-in-jungle-140815.htm

Two ancient Maya cities discovered in the jungle of southeastern Mexico
http://www.zrc-sazu.si/en/novice/two-ancient-maya-cities-discovered-in-the-jungle-of-southeastern-mexico

El Mirador, the Lost City of the Maya
http://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/el-mirador-the-lost-city-of-the-maya-1741461/?no-ist

Maya: Facts & Summary
http://www.history.com/topics/maya

The ancient Mayan civilization peaked in the sixth century A.D., nearly a thousand years before the Spanish conquest of the Yucatan Peninsula. Between A.D. 250 and A.D. 900, 40 cities blossomed between the Gulf of Mexico and the Pacific Ocean, each with a population of up to 50,000 residents. Archeologists believe the total population of the area may have exceeded two million before its mysterious decline around the turn of the first millennium. After a century of scrutiny, scientists still have yet to answer the most basic question of all: what happened to the Maya? Why did they walk away from these incredible metropolises, some of the most complex and beautiful in the ancient world? The recent discovery of two previously undocumented cities deep in the Yucatan jungle has sparked a firestorm of excitement in the field, with experts hoping that upcoming digs might shed new light on the old puzzle. [CNH]

The first three articles, from NBC News, The Washington Post, and Discovery News, provide excellent coverage of the findings, featuring detailed descriptions of these discoveries, as well as photographs of pyramids, doorjambs, and other points of interest. Next, take a look at the original report from the Research Centre of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts, which notes the contrasts between these sites and previously unearthed Mayan cities. The fifth link will take visitors to a May 2011 Smithsonian Magazine feature about El Mirador, another, older Mayan city, with a 230-foot pyramid. Finally, peruse the History Channel's treatment of the Maya, which provides a broad overview of 2,000 years Mayan history, as well as photos and brief, informative documentaries.





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