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Sunday, August 24, 2014

The Scout Report: Research and Education - August 22, 2014

Check out these highlights from The Internet Scout Project.

British Library: Playtimes
What would it be like to play games in wartime Britain? Or any other time for that matter? This remarkable website from the British Library helps curious visitors learn about playground games of all sorts. Visitors can watch a video of girls dancing to celebrate the end of World War One and also look at children performing traditional songs and games. In the Kids Zone, visitors can use the interactive playground to peruse some of these most fascinating pastimes. The Your Stories section lets visitors learn about images submitted by young people themselves documenting their favorite games. Teachers will also find the materials here helpful when teaching their charges about how children play around the world. 
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Early Washington Maps: A Digital Collection

Documenting "the struggle between Britain and America for the ownership of the region, and the further development of one of the last frontiers on the continent" is one of the primary goals of this digital collection of maps relating the history and development of the area that eventually would become Washington state. Created by a partnership between the University of Washington and Washington State University, the digital collection includes a timeline of early Washington maps that orients its users to the breadth and depth of the digital collection. There is also a drop-down menu that allows visitors to look at thumbnails of each map, organized by different themes such as forests, Puget Sound, and railroads. A general searchable index to the collection is also available for visitors looking for any number of thematic maps. The site will be of special interest to those curious about Washington state history, historical geography, and the practice of cartography over the past few centuries. 
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In Search of Shakespeare: Shakespeare's Sonnets Lesson Plan

PBS has created a wonderful lesson plan on Shakespeare's sonnets that addresses students' most common complaint about the Bard: the inaccessible language. This website for educators has videos and other technology for students, as well as academic articles for educators that are meant to help them better understand how to teach Shakespeare. Visitors should not miss the updated "translation" of Sonnet 18, the classic that starts out "Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?" Another gem of a lesson plan that visitors should check out is the "Soliloquies Buster" under "Professional Development" on the right hand menu of the website. It includes a handout that gives the step-by-step process on making the dreaded soliloquy not just accessible, but engaging and fun.
Get the Math

How does math get used in the "real world?" The short answer is that it is used to create hip-hop music, in fashion design, and through a number of other endeavors. This interactive website combines video and web interactive to help young people develop algebraic thinking skills for solving real-world problems. The series is funded by The Moody's Foundation, along with assistance from WNET and American Public Television. The sections of the site include The Challenges, Video, and Teachers. In The Challenges area, users will find video segments profiling the various young professionals who use math in their work, along with interactive tools to help students solve the challenges they are presented with. Moving on, the Teachers area includes resources for teachers, such as a training video showing how to use project materials in the classroom, along with student handouts. Visitors shouldn't miss the Basketball challenge, featuring NBA player Elton Brand talking about the problems presented by free throw shooting.  
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Source: Internet Scout Project

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