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Freebee Friday: Space to Learn

Interstellar_gravitylessonGoogle Play for Education and the movie “Interstellar” have teamed up with a slew of lessons that use the film as a way to teach about the science of space. There are 20 lessons online that are indexed to Common Core and Next Generation Science standards, including designing a planet, building your own biosphere and a tutorial on black holes.

Time for Time for Kids

TfkThe weekly print edition of Time for Kids is now supplemented by a digital one with a classroom app for iPads. The software and content are free until the end of the year. In addition to getting kids caught up on world and national affairs, TFK has a multitude of videos, images, maps and animated sequences. 


Freebee Friday: Content City

Net textsInstead of concentrating on creating classroom software for PCs and Macs, Net Texts is focusing on individual apps for iPads and iPhones, Androids and the Chrome browser. The system provides a good variety of classroom content that’s absolutely free with over 1,000 K-12 courses that are ready and waiting. The service has everything from a look at Greek sculpture from New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art to a Big History survey.


Seeing is Believing

Lifesize nasaRegardless of whether it’s for connecting a classroom with a sick child, to talk to a parent remotely or to watch a virtual field trip, video conferencing is taking hold in most schools. Lifesize lets you do it without any extra hardware because all you need is a PC, Mac, iPad or Android device and a good Internet connection. The system lets you log-on, talk and see other participants in high definition video without expensive hardware or busting the budget. The company’s package of 25 licenses can be extended to 625 actual users, more than enough for the typical elementary or middle school. At $7,500, it adds up to about a dollar a month per user. You can set up a remote demo of the system or try it out for two-weeks for free.


Livening Up the Classroom

This fall, Tci 5th gradelook for the arrival of TCI’s Bring Science Alive series of science lessons. Purchased by subscription, the service is aligned with the Next Generation Science Standards and will cover Kindergarten through 5th grade curriculum. The class gets interactive lessons, assessments and a full digital textbook that’s delivered over the Internet to a browser window so just about any computer can be used.


From Pad to Programmer

Tynker-Android-Child-Coding-closeup2With Tynker, kids of all ages can use their tablets to create vivid and creative programs, from games and interactive stories to puzzles and even some educational titles. There are free versions for Android and the iPad, but the $4.99 Premium versions add game building features. There are tutorials available for $50.



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