Monday, February 25, 2013

RockOn 2013 University Rocket Science Workshop

U.S. university and community college faculty and students are invited to a weeklong workshop to learn how to build and launch a scientific experiment into space. NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia is hosting the RockOn 2013 workshop June 15-20, 2013, in partnership with the Colorado and Virginia Space Grant Consortia. Workshop participants must be U.S. citizens. The registration deadline for the workshop is May 1, 2013.

The hands-on workshop teaches participants to build experiments that fly on sounding rockets. During the week, participants will work together in teams of three to construct and integrate a sounding rocket payload from a kit. On the fifth day of the workshop, the experiments will fly on a sounding rocket expected to reach an altitude of more than 70 miles.

Each experiment will provide valuable scientific data, analyzed as part of the student-led science and engineering research. The program engages faculty and students in science, technology, engineering and mathematics skills critical to NASA's future engineering, scientific and technical missions.

For more information about RockOn and to register online, visit

Questions about the workshop or the registration process should be directed to Chris Koehler by email at
or by telephone at 303-492-3141.

Fellowship in Aerospace History

The Fellowship in Aerospace History, offered by the American Historical Association and supported by NASA, seeks applications for a predoctoral or postdoctoral fellowship related to the history of aerospace. The selected Fellow will have the opportunity to engage in significant and sustained advanced research in all aspects of the history of aerospace from the earliest human interest in flight to the present, including cultural and intellectual history, economic history, history of law and public policy, and the history of science, engineering and management.

The fellowship carries a stipend of $20,000 for a six- to nine-month fellowship and is adjustable for longer fellowships of up to a year. Funds may not be used to support tuition or fees.

The fellowship is open to applicants who hold a doctoral degree in history or in a closely related field, or who are enrolled in and have completed all coursework for a doctoral degree-granting program.

Applications are due April 1, 2013.

For detailed information on the fellowship and the application process, visit

Questions about this opportunity should be directed to

2013-14 History of Science Society Fellowship in the History of Space Science

The Fellowship in the History of Space Science, offered by the History of Science Society and supported by the NASA History Division, seeks applications for a nine-month predoctoral or postdoctoral fellowship related to the history of science. The fellowship may support advanced research related to all aspects of the history of space science, from the earliest human interest in space to the present.

The fellowship carries a stipend of $21,250. Funds may not be used to support tuition or fees.

Applicants must possess a doctorate in history of science or in a closely related field, or be enrolled as a student in a doctoral degree program and have completed all requirements for the degree, except the dissertation, in history of science or a related field. Eligibility is not limited to U.S. citizens or residents.

Applications are due April 1, 2013.

For detailed information on the fellowship and the application process, visit

Questions about this opportunity should be directed to

NASA Fellowship in the History of Space Technology

The NASA Fellowship in the History of Space Technology, offered by the Society for the History of Technology and supported by the NASA History Division, seeks applications for a yearlong predoctoral or postdoctoral fellowship related to the history of space technology. The fellowship may support advanced research related to all aspects of space history, leading to publications on the history of space technology broadly considered, including cultural and intellectual history, institutional history, economic history, history of law and public policy, and history of engineering and management.

The fellowship carries a stipend of $17,000, paid quarterly. Funds may not be used to support tuition or fees. The NASA Fellow will also receive complimentary membership in the Society for the History of Technology for the year of fellowship.

Applicants must possess a doctorate in history of technology or in a closely related field, or be enrolled as a student in a doctoral degree program and have completed all requirements for the Ph.D., except the dissertation, in history of technology or a related field. Eligibility is not limited to U.S. citizens or residents.

Applications are due April 1, 2013.

For detailed information on the fellowship and the application process, visit

Questions about this opportunity should be directed to

Sun-Earth Days 'SolarMAX Anime' Contest

NASA's Sun-Earth Days program wants to see your best anime artwork. SolarMAX is the official superhero mascot for Sun-Earth Days. But keeping an eye on space weather is a big job for just one superhero. The Sun-Earth Days team is looking for students ages 13 and older to create and submit a new and original anime-style character to help SolarMAX. The character must have a visible space weather related super power.

The Sun-Earth Days team will select five characters to be added to the Sun-Earth Days superhero team! The first two winning characters will be selected and announced on the live Sun-Earth Days webcast on March 22, 2013. Winner characters also will appear as part of a new Sun-Earth Days desktop wallpaper!

Entries must be submitted online by March 20, 2013.

For more information, including instructions for submitting a character design, visit

Questions about this opportunity should be directed to

Celebrate Solar Week -- Spring 2013

Solar Week provides a weeklong series of Web-based educational classroom activities and games with a focus on the sun-Earth connection geared for grades 5-8. Students learn about solar eclipses, sunspots, solar flares and solar storms through a series of activities, games and lessons. In addition, there’s a message board where classrooms can submit a question to leading solar scientists.

Solar Week is ideal for students studying the solar system, the stars or astronomy in general, and now Solar Week features a day focused on solar energy. Solar Week is also for kids pondering possible career choices and wondering what it's like to be a scientist. Participation makes for a fun computer lab activity as well. After doing the activities, students can interact on the bulletin board with leading scientists at the forefront of sun-Earth research. It’s a great place for any student interested in our nearest star, the sun.

Solar Week takes place March 18-22, 2013.

To learn more and to register to participate, visit

Questions about Solar Week may be emailed to

Free Exploring Space Lecture Series -- Attend in Person or View Online

The 2013 Exploring Space Lectures will feature world-class scholars discussing the incredibly diverse worlds that make up our solar system. The lectures will be held at the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C., and are free to attend. Tickets are required. The lectures will be webcast live for free viewing. Lecture videos will be archived.

Curiosity's Mission of Exploration at Gale Crater, Mars

In August 2012, the Curiosity rover arrived on Mars in a daring feat of engineering. John Grotzinger, chief scientist for the Mars Science Laboratory Mission, will share the latest images and scientific results from the Curiosity mission. Grotzinger will also discuss Gale Crater, the area where Curiosity is exploring.

The lecture will take place on March 12, 2013, at 8 p.m. Come early to see a free film and to meet the lecturer.

For more information, visit

The Voyager Journey to the Edge of Interstellar Space

Launched in 1977 on a journey to explore Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune, the two Voyager spacecraft are now over nine billion miles from Earth. Professor Edward Stone of the California Institute of Technology will discuss the epic journey taken by the Voyager spacecraft as they approach interstellar space.

The lecture will take place on April 16, 2013, at 8 p.m. Come early to see a free film and to meet the lecturer.

For more information, visit

Vesta in the Light of Dawn

Before starting its journey to the dwarf planet Ceres, the Dawn spacecraft spent a year exploring the asteroid Vesta. Principal Scientist Carol Raymond will lead attendees on a tour of the ancient world of Vesta and what it can teach us about the early days of the solar system.

The lecture will take place on May 7, 2013, at 8 p.m. Come early to see a free film and to meet the lecturer session.

For more information, visit

50 Years of Solar System Exploration: New Worlds, New Discoveries

Through the decades of planetary explorations, a wide variety of spacecraft (orbiters, landers, rovers and more) have revealed an amazing diversity of worlds, each with its own story to tell. Join James L. Green, director of planetary science at NASA Headquarters, as he guides attendees through the 50-year voyage of discovery.

The lecture will take place on June 13, 2013, at 8 p.m. Come early to see a free film and to meet the lecturer.

For more information, visit

NASA National Space Grant College and Fellowship Program to Host Interactive Student Presentations

On Feb. 28 - March 2, 2013, the National Council of NASA Space Grant Directors' Spring Meeting will be held in Crystal City, Va. This meeting will include a NASA Digital Learning Network, or DLN, broadcast of presentations by undergraduate and graduate students who are supported by Space Grant consortia from across the country. Join us online for this exciting, interactive event. Viewers will have the opportunity to email questions to the presenters during the live presentations. The NASA Space Grant Program Office staff will also be in attendance.

The presentations will commence as follows:

Thursday, Feb. 28, 2013, 3 - 4:15 p.m. EST: Learn about students’ exciting work on space hardware, a supersonic wind tunnel, ionospheric dust collection and robotic aircraft during this webcast.

Friday, March 1, 2013, 2 - 2:45 p.m. EST: Learn about students’ exciting work on transformative Space Grant projects, bone loss in microgravity and helicopter testing during this webcast.

To access, please visit the NASA DLN website at

Questions about this opportunity should be directed to Aleksandra Korobov at

Pythagorean Theorem: Exploring Space Through Math -- Lunar Rover Web Seminar

NASA Explorer Schools and the National Science Teachers Association are hosting a 90-minute live professional development Web seminar for educators on Feb. 27, 2013 at 6:30 p.m. EST. Learn to use the distance formula and the Pythagorean theorem to determine the minimal path and minimal time for a lunar rover to perform tasks on the surface of the moon. Participants should have a basic knowledge of scale factor and application of the Pythagorean theorem. Having access to a calculator is helpful but not necessary for session.

Seminar participants will be given an overview of the lesson and a look at where it fits in the mathematics curriculum, including an alignment to the Common Core Standards for mathematics.

This is the last time this Web seminar will be offered during the current school year.

For more information and to register online, visit

To learn more about the NASA Explorer Schools project, visit

Email any questions about this opportunity to

High Power Microscopes: The Virtual Lab Web Seminar

As part of a series of electronic professional development experiences, the NASA Explorer Schools project and the National Science Teachers Association are hosting a 90-minute Web seminar for educators on Feb. 26, 2013 at 6:30 p.m. EST. Learn to use a computer program simulating three high-power virtual microscopes: an atomic force microscope, a scanning electron microscope and a fluorescence light microscope. Viewing specimens include one-celled organisms, human tissue, computer chips, insects and fungi. You will get an overview of the software, watch videos of students exploring specimens and learn to use the Virtual Lab website and software.

This is the last time this Web seminar will be offered during the current school year.

For more information and to register online, visit URL

To learn more about the NASA Explorer Schools project, visit

Email any questions about this opportunity to the NASA Explorer Schools help desk at

eSchoolNews - Awards for favorite teachers - My Favorite Teacher Contest

Awards for favorite teachers

My Favorite Teacher Contest

Students write an essay, poem, or thank-you letter (500 words or less, in English on 8.5″ x 11″ white paper) sharing how a teacher has influenced their life and why they appreciate and admire them. Each entry should be submitted with the entry form and a parent or legal guardian must sign the entry form acknowledging that they have read the Official Contest Rules.
Contact Information
  • Grant Organization: Barnes and Noble
  • Contact URL:
  • Eligibility: Middle and high school students
  • Grant Deadline: Friday March 1st, 2013
  • Grant Value: The students who author the winning essays, poems, or thank-you letters will receive a certificate of recognition and be honored at their local store during a ceremony for the winning teachers from their schools. The winning teachers will receive a special award acknowledging their achievement. Five regional winners will receive a NOOK eReader and a $500 Barnes & Noble Gift Card. The winner of the "Barnes & Noble Teacher of the Year" award will receive $5,000 and will be recognized at a special event at a Barnes & Noble store. The winning teacher's school will receive $5,000 as well.

MacWorld - How to disable Java on your Mac (or isolate it)

Rich Mogull writes,
With the news that some Apple, Facebook, and Twitter employees’ Macs were hacked, and Apple and Oracle’s subsequent software patches, it’s time to revisit the question of whether Java can be used securely.
His article details how to remove Java, or isolate it, to help secure your Macintosh.  Click here to read the article...

Double Bubble Maps

The missing LAME file - Do You Want to Export to MP3 in Audacity?

Stephen Reid, who runs the "Higher Place" blog, posted a helpful article on how to get Audacity to export MP3 format audio files.  He says,
However, one thing that gets in the way of a successful training session with Audacity is the lack of that vital file that allows users to save Audacity files as MP3 files. Many teachers contact me after a good day of sound recording to ask me why they can’t export their work as an MP3. It’s due to a missing file called lame_enc.dll.
I have uploaded the file here for you to download and below are the instructions on where to put it on your computer and how to make it work.

Download here: Lame_enc.dll

Step 1 – Download the file above
Step 2 – Open the file (Extract the file within it to your Desktop or other folder)
Step 3 – Open the folder you installed Audacity in.
Step 4 – Copy the Lame file into the Audacity folder
Step 5 – Open Audacity
Step 6 – Make a recording (a short test recording will do for now)
Step 7 – Click ‘File‘ then ‘Export As MP3
Step 8 – Follow the prompts until you are faced with the ‘Lame_enc.dll missing’ message
Step 9 – Locate the file when prompted to (Where you saved it in Step 4)
You will only have to do this once (unless you delete the Lame file or change computer). It may be necessary to do this on every computer in a school. However, in some cases your ICT technicians may be able to do this across all computers remotely.
If you have any issues with this process please email me directly:

Microsoft Virtual Academy

One of our System Administrators brought this to my attention this morning...
I came across the Microsoft Virtual Academy the other day while searching for training. - It requires a sign up but it is free.
So far, I am very impressed with it.  There are a lot of great “Jump Start” trainings that could help each of us as we move to Server 2012, Win 8, and SQL 2012.  Also some great stuff on the System Center Suite (Configuration Manager, etc).

Free iOS App Today - Remote for Roku


★★★ Newsflash: This is the app featured by CNET in the video "How to control your Roku with your iPhone". Check it out at - they did a great job showing in under a minute how easy it is! ★★★

"Remote for Roku" is an iPhone/iPod Touch app that can remotely control Roku video players. The app has simple and elegant interface, it automatically discovers the Roku players connected to your WiFi network and can control them with all the functionality of the IR remote that comes with the box - including the additional "instant replay", "info" and "back" buttons. It also adds functionality like keyboard support (e.g. for Netflix searches) and a channel launchpad.

COMPATIBILITY: Remote4Roku works with all "Roku" digital video players. This includes Roku1 (HD, XD, XDS) and Roku2 (LT, HD, XD, XS) series, as well as the previous generation (DVP, SD, HD-XR) and Netgear NTV250.

There is no configuration needed, as long as your iOS device is WiFi-connected to the same network your Roku player is on. Notable exception are some Qwest/Actiontec routers (e.g. PK5000, M1000, MI424WR, GT701WG, GT724WG), which do not support auto-discovery protocol - for those the player will have to be added manually by tapping on "Other" in Settings.

"Remote for Roku" cannot control "Angry Birds" for Roku 2; the game requires a Bluetooth controller from Roku.

Hulu+ does not respond to remote keyboard commands - this is a limitation of the channel. Please join me in asking Hulu to fix that omission: contact them at - as a monthly-paying subscriber, your opinion matters!

TROUBLESHOOTING: In case of a problem:
(1) Make sure that your iOS device is connected to WiFi (can you see the 3-wave symbol in the status bar?)

(2) Click on the "(i)" button in the upper right corner to check the list of recognized Roku devices, wait a few seconds for updated information. If the player is not recognized, to add it manually tap on "Other..." and follow the instructions

(3) If still no connection, try restarting the wireless router and Roku. Unplug the power from the router for five seconds, plug it again and wait for a minute to initialize. Do the same for Roku, wait until the home screen loads and verify it is connected by playing some internet content (like Netflix or Pandora channels). At this point Remote4Roku should be able to discover the player, repeat step (2).

(4) If still having an issue, tap the "Problem?" button in the Settings screen to report it by email. Please describe in as much detail as you can think of - the more information you can provide, the better odds of it being solved quick.

Free iOS App Today - Intellicast - Weather Radar, Storm Tracking, Precision Forecasts, and Maps


Intellicast raises the bar for interactive real-time weather applications. Whether you’re
checking the forecast for the next 10 days, the next 24 hours, tracking SEVERE storms
using our advanced radar, or even plotting earthquakes in real-time, Intellicast is the only
iPhone weather app you need.


�� NOWrad Radar: The most timely interactive radar for North America that also
does real-time storm cell tracking 
and map-based weather alerts

�� Future Radar using state-of-the-art TruPoint(sm) technology. Now you can see not
only where the rain or snow is, but also where it’s expected to be.

�� See current condition trends, as well as average and record temperatures
Temperature, precipitation, UV index, and wind speed graphs

�� Combined radar and satellite layers, for the Continental US, Canada, Alaska,
Hawaii, Caribbean, parts of Mexico, and high-resolution temperature, wind
and snow cover layers

�� Plot earthquakes in real-time, track hurricanes, typhoons, and tropical cyclones,
and use our Exclusive Road
Weather index to see weather-related road hazards

�� NWS and Environment Canada Watch & Warning areas on the map

�� Push Alert Notification: Get time-critical National Weather Service warnings for
the United States as push alerts, 
even when you’re not in the Intellicast app.
NOTE: For a list of critical alerts, please see the in-app help. 

�� No ads while in horizontal orientation

Our mission is to bring advanced expert weather content and tools to weather sensitive
decision makers. We are part of The Weather Company, the people who every day
provide the world’s best weather forecasts, content and data to millions through The
Weather Channel,, WSI Corporation, Weather Central, and Weather

Check us out at

Free iOS App Today - Translator


Translator™ - application that will certainly help you to read books and communicate on unknown languages using your iPhone, iPod or iPad.

Applications features:
★ Ability to translate text into 65 languages of the world:
・Creole (Haiti)

★ Ability to play the translated text in 19 languages:
· Catalan
· Chinese
· Czech
· Danish
· English
· Japanese
· Hungarian
· German
· Finnish
· French
· Norwegian
· Korean
· Portuguese
· Polish
· Spanish
· Swedish
· Turkish
· Italian
· Russian

★ Additional features and possibilities:
  - Quick switch between 3 chosen languages ​​
- Delete unnecessary language
- Enter an unlimited amount of text
- Add important and most frequently used phrases
- Work with the translated text through Google search engines
- Copy the translated text for later use
- Library of the most commonly used words by tourists
- Send a translated text via SMS or e-mail

Free iOS Apps Today - Fotopedia

Fotopedia France -
Discover France with:
• A fantastic collection of thousands of spectacular photos
• Trip Builder to create your own itinerary, or easy-to-build personalized tours
• Visual stories, updated frequently so you can discover the best of France
• Share your favorite images and stories via email, Facebook and Twitter
• Complete navigation with smart tags, search and interactive maps
• Stunning free wallpapers for your iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch
• Instant Slideshows

Other Fotopedia apps:

Memory of Colors  - 99¢

Free iOS App Today - Color Uncovered


Explore the surprising side of color with Color Uncovered, an interactive book that features fascinating illusions, articles, and videos developed by the Exploratorium.

How is Monet like a honeybee? What color is a whisper? Why is it so hard to find your car in a lamp-lit parking lot?

Color Uncovered features a wide spectrum of cool color-related topics to explore. Learn why friends shouldn’t let men buy bananas. Try your own color experiments on the iPad using simple items you have at home: a CD case, a drop of water, and a piece of paper. Discover how the iPad and other devices create color. Find out what causes afterimages—and more.

Color Uncovered was created at the Exploratorium, the mothership for people with major cases of curiosity. Visit us online at or in person in San Francisco, California.

Free iOS App Today - Sound Uncovered


Explore the surprising side of sound with Sound Uncovered, an interactive book featuring auditory illusions, acoustic phenomena, and other things that go bump, beep, boom, and vroom.

From the makers of Color Uncovered—the Exploratorium—this app puts you at the center of the experiment: Hear with your eyes, see with your ears, make and modify recordings, test your hearing, and more.

How do you make a saxophone growl? Are there secret messages in music played backward? Can you talk and listen at the same time? Why does the sound of gum chewing drive some people mad? Listen up and find answers to these questions and more as you take an auditory trip to the place where sound gets truly interesting: the space between your ears.

Find more to explore from the Exploratorium online at Better yet, visit us in person at our new home at Pier 15 in San Francisco, California.

NASA Pre-Service Teacher Institutes

[Educators Grades K-8 & Students Higher Education]
[Available: Nationally]

The Pre-Service Teacher Institute, or PSTI, was developed to provide a more in-depth experience for pre-service teachers. At the PSTI, pre-service teachers spend two weeks in an intensive experience where they are exposed to problem-based learning, mathematics, science and technology enrichment activities. Pre-service teachers are able to interface with NASA personnel and tour NASA facilities. The educators learn to incorporate NASA's cutting-edge research into lesson plans for elementary and middle school students. The institute culminates with the pre-service teachers developing and teaching problem-based lessons to children from local schools.

PSTIs are held at Ames Research Center, Johnson Space Center, Kennedy Space Center, Langley Research Center, Marshall Space Flight Center, and Stennis Research Center. Please check the web links below for current PSTI information. Contact the center directly for more information about that center's summer institute.

NASA Contact
Ms. Theresa Martinez
Project Manager
Mailcode: EX-E
Kennedy Space Center, FL 32899
Phone: 321-867-0590

NASA Center PTSI Web Sites
>  NASA Ames Research Center's Pre-Service Teacher Institute
>  NASA Johnson Space Center's Pre-Service Teacher Institute   →
>  NASA Kennedy Space Center's Pre-Service Teacher Institute   →
>  NASA Langley Research Center's Pre-Service Teacher Institute   →
>  NASA Marshall Space Flight Center's Pre-Service Teacher Institute  →
>  NASA Stennis Space Center's Pre-Service Teacher Institute   →

Additional Contact Information
> View Higher Education contact information
> View Pre-college contact information 

Thursday, February 21, 2013

TED Talk - Andreas Schleicher: Use data to build better schools

How can we measure what makes a school system work? Andreas Schleicher walks us through the PISA test, a global measurement that ranks countries against one another -- then uses that same data to help schools improve. Watch to find out where your country stacks up, and learn the single factor that makes some systems outperform others.

What makes a great school system? To find out, Andreas Schleicher administers a test to compare student performance around the world.

Google Glass - Seeking Google Glass Explorers

Seeking Glass Explorers:

Last year we showed Glass to the world for the first time - we jumped out of airships, crashed New York Fashion Week and even took a ride on the subway. It’s been an exhilarating journey so far and there’s a lot more to come, but we can’t go it alone. We’re developing new technology that is designed to be unobtrusive and liberating, and so far we’ve only scratched the surface of the true potential of Glass.

Now we want you to get involved and that’s why today we’re expanding our Glass Explorer Program. We’re looking for bold, creative individuals who want to join us and be a part of shaping the future of Glass. Glass is still in the early stages, so we expect there will be some twists and turns along the way. While we can’t promise everything will be perfect, we can promise it will be exciting.

We’d love to make everyone a Glass Explorer, but we’re starting a bit smaller. So, if you want to be one of the first Explorers, go to to find out how.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

3Doodler is a $75 3D-printing pen

"In April of last year, former MakerBot COO Samuel Cervantes launched the Solidoodle, a $500 3D printer. We were a bit taken aback by the price point -- after all, his former company's product had seemingly set the standard for consumer-facing 3D-printer pricing at around $2,000. We're hoping you've got both hands firmly clutching your hat when we tell you that the 3Doodler, a 3D-printing pen from the crew over at Wobbleworks, is going to run a whopping $75 at launch -- and heck, if you get in early on the company's recently launched Kickstarter, you'll be able to snag one for $50.
Before we go any further, however, let's get some things out of the way. For starters, it's best to take the 3D printer thing with a grain or two of salt. Calling the 3Doodler a 3D pen is a bit like calling a high-end ink pen a 2D printer. The device is actually quite simple, but pretty brilliant. It essentially takes the heated extrusion head off a 3D printer and incorporates it into a standalone device. A single piece of plastic (ABS or PLA, for the more environmentally minded out there) is threaded through the back, fed through the pen and comes out melted through the tip. Yes, like its 3D printer brethren, it works a bit like a hot glue gun."

The Ultimate Collection of Free Photoshop Patterns

A nice collection of Photoshop pattern files (.pat).

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Report: Connected Learning: An Agenda for Research and Design

By: Mizuko Ito, Kris Gutierrez, Sonia Livingstone, Bill Penuel, Jean Rhodes, Katie Salen, Juliet Schor, Julian Sefton-Green, and S. Craig Watkins
Date: January, 2013

To read a summary of the report, click here.

This report is a synthesis of ongoing research, design, and implementation of an approach to education called “connected learning.” It advocates for broadened access to learning that is socially embedded, interest-driven, and oriented toward educational, economic, or political opportunity. Connected learning is realized when a young person is able to pursue a personal interest or passion with the support of friends and caring adults, and is in turn able to link this learning and interest to academic achievement, career success or civic engagement.

This model is based on evidence that the most resilient, adaptive, and effective learning involves individual interest as well as social support to overcome adversity and provide recognition.

This report investigates how we can use new media to foster the growth and sustenance of environments that support connected learning in a broad-based and equitable way. This report also offers a design and reform agenda, grounded in a rich understanding of child development and learning, to promote and test connected learning theories.

To download an eBook version of this report from the Amazon Marketplace, click here.

To join the newly launched Connected Learning Google + Community, click here.

To see brief video commentaries from the connected learning researchers, click here.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Disaster Hero

Disaster Hero is a free online game designed to teach children (grades 1 through 8), parents, and teachers/caregivers how to prepare for disasters. The overall goals are to ensure that players know what to do before, during, and after a disaster. Parents and teachers are included so that the family and school are familiar with the main concepts of disaster preparedness. Emphasis is placed on three steps – make a plan, get a kit, and be informed.

Disaster Hero will work with all major web browsers. You need to have the latest version of Adobe Flash installed to play Disaster Hero. You can download the latest version of Adobe Flash for free here

Disaster Hero was developed as part of a grant administered by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security/Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

The American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) and Legacy Games have worked together to design and develop Disaster Hero, creating an educational and engaging online game that teaches players about the types of disasters that may occur in their geographic region.  Earthquakes, floods, hurricanes and tornadoes are used to help children, families, and teachers learn how to prepare for, and react to, a devastating natural disaster.

LMS - Learning Management Systems

A learning management system (LMS) is a software application for the administration, documentation, tracking, reporting and delivery of education courses or training programs.[1]  LMSs range from systems for managing training and educational records to software for distributing online or blended/hybrid college courses over the Internet with features for online collaboration. Colleges and universities use LMSs to deliver online courses and augment on-campus courses. Corporate training departments use LMSs to deliver online training, as well as automate record-keeping and employee registration.  (Wikipedia)
Not by way of endorsement - just looking for the LMS offerings out there.  Here are a few (if you know of others, please comment about them)...

      Some Photoshop Resources

      Adobe - Photoshop Help/Help and Tutorials

      Adobe - Photoshop Default Keyboard Shortcuts (also available as a PDF file)

      Nathan Smith - Photoshop CS6 Extended Quick Keys Reference

      Deke McClelland's Photoshop Top 40 - ( and also a video podcast in the iTunes store - is a free resource that will teach you much about Photoshop's features. This podcast was published during Photoshop CS4 and CS5, but most of the content applies to the newest version of Photoshop as well.

      Photoshop Essentials: Lots of online tutorials

      Photoshop Killer Tips: Get your daily video dose of the coolest Adobe Photoshop tips, timesaving shortcuts, workarounds, and undocumented tricks. Also available as a downloadable podcast.

      Photoshop Tutorials Group on - Many user submitted Photoshop tutorials. Join Deviantart and you can join and submit to this group!

      Photoshop User TV: The weekly Photoshop TV show featuring "The Photoshop Guys" Scott Kelby, Dave Cross and Matt Kloskowski. Presented by the National Association of Photoshop Professionals (NAPP). Also available as a downloadable podcast.

      PSDTUTS+ - Psdtuts+ is a blog/Photoshop site made to house and showcase some of the best Photoshop tutorials around. They publish tutorials that not only produce great graphics and effects, but explain the techniques behind them in a friendly, approachable manner.

      Need fonts? Try these sites for many free font downloads...

      Some good sources for free stock photos:

      40 Amazing Photoshop Actions for Designers and Photographers

      30 Sleek Fonts for Your Minimalist Designs

      44 Grunge Photoshop Tutorials

      Adobe Photoshop CS6: Collection of Useful Tutorials


      Texture Lovers

      100 Categorized Cool Photoshop Effects

      200++ Photoshop Photo Effects

      StarWalt Design Photoshop Stuff

      16 websites with Free Stock Images for commercial use

      34 Photoshop Tutorials That Will Leave You Looking Like A Pro

      25 Mind Blowing Text Effects Photoshop Tutorials

      100 Principles for Designing Logos and Building Brands

      Lost and Taken - Textures and the Pursuit of Happiness

      100 Free Fonts You Should Have in Your Library

      50 Fresh Free Fonts of 2010

      Free iOS App Today - aTimeLogger 2


      FREE for limited time!

      Data migration from aTimeLogger 1.x is very easy

      Application for tracking your everyday activities.

      Spending only a few minutes a day on this app you will get daily, weekly and monthly statistics in the form of diagrams and graphs. Using this data you'll be able to control and manage you time.

      aTimeLogger 2 is the right solution for everyone:
      - business people with intensive daily routine;
      - sportsmen who value every minute of their day;
      - parents in order to control their children's daily activities;
      - everyone who is interested in what activities they spend their day on and those who want to control and optimize their time.

      Application features:
      - easy and intuitive interface
      - goals
      - pause/resume activities
      - groups
      - simultaneous activities (enable them in Settings)
      - many statistics available in form of graphs and pie charts
      - reports in different formats (CSV and HTML)
      - backup and restore
      - a huge number of icons for activity types and ability to upload custom icons
      - the best support :-)

      Raytheon-EiE Teacher Scholarship Program

      Professional Development Scholarships Available

      Put yourself in the picture--apply now!

      The Raytheon-EiE Teacher Scholarship Program is now accepting applications. Thanks to Raytheon's generous support, more than 20 full scholarships are available to support you in attending a professional development workshop and implementing EiE in your classroom.

      EiE's “Everyone Engineers” workshops are designed both for elementary teachers AND science specialists. Scholarship recipients receive a $3,000 award that covers workshop registration, travel and housing, and a set of EiE curriculum materials. The two-day workshops are held in Boston, MA.

      Download your application form today. Applications must be postmarked by March 1, 2013. Winners will be notified in late May.

      Upcoming PD Opportunities

      Come to the Museum of Science, Boston, for our hands-on, teacher-tested EiE Professional Development workshops.

      (Can’t travel to Boston? Our expert PD educators can come to your school. Fill out our online professional development request form for more information.)

      Everyone Engineers!

      A two-day, hands-on workshop that gives you the skills to implement EiE in your classroom.
      • April 4-5, 2013
      • July 10-11, 2013

      Teacher Educator Institutes

      Intensive three-day workshop certifies EiE Professional Development educators.
      • March 13-15, 2013 

      • May 8-10, 2013

      Get involved in the Great Backyard Bird Count!

      Are you planning to participate in the Great Backyard Bird Count from February 15th–18th? This global event, hosted by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and Audubon, is a great opportunity for nature lovers of all ages to discover the variety of feathered friends living just outside our back doors. 
      It’s really easy to get involved in the Great Backyard Bird Count. All it takes is 15 minutes to watch and record the different bird species living in and visiting your backyard (or any green space really), making it a fantastic opportunity to showcase nature on your doorstep.  
      For those of you taking part in the Great Backyard Bird Count in the United States, check out this handy field guide to introduce you to a selection of the more common bird species that could make an appearance in your local area. Discover more about the birds in your state by using ARKive’s ‘Explore by Geography’ feature, or, for another way of exploring your local natural surroundings, try ARKive Species Bingo!

      Free teaching resources 

      The Great Backyard Bird Count is also an ideal opportunity to plan a variety of cross-curricular lessons and activities, and ARKive Education has plenty of bird-related resources to put you on the right track…
      Penguin Diversity

      5-7 Years 
      Animals over winter. 7-11 Years
      Animals over Winter
      The Dating Game 11-14 Years
      The Dating Game
      Human Impacts 14-16 Years
      Human Impacts
      Biodiversity and Evolution 16-18 Years
      Biodiversity and Evolution - Darwin's Finches

      Explore more free resources on ARKive’s education pages.  

      MacWorld - Mac troubleshooting: How to handle freezes and crashes

      "Crashes and freezes in OS X are mercifully rare, but they do occur. Fortunately, most of them can be resolved readily; and even though a crash or freeze may have any of numerous causes or symptoms, the same procedure works for troubleshooting most of them"
      Click here to read the entire MacWorld post...

      MacWorld - 33 expert tips and tricks for iOS 6

      "Perhaps you are already an iOS master. Or maybe you consider yourself more of a novice. Either way, we feel confident that at least some of the tips and tricks for iOS 6 that we present below will be new to you. What’s more, we hope you love them—and benefit from them—as much as we do."
      Click here to read the entire article from MacWorld...

      NASA Announcement for High-Impact, National, Strategic STEM Education Partnerships

      NASA Headquarters Office of Education requests information from organizations interested in helping the Agency, on a no-exchange-of-funds basis, achieve its strategic goals for education. NASA uses the Agency’s unique missions, discoveries, and assets to inspire and motivate students and learners of all ages in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM. NASA seeks high-impact, national scale results that will broaden the STEM education audience and include diverse individuals who are underrepresented in STEM education.

      Potential partnership activities are varied. NASA is receptive to a wide range of creative possibilities. All categories of domestic entities, including U.S. federal government agencies, are eligible to respond to this announcement. The Announcement is currently open. NASA will accept responses through Dec. 31, 2014. Review of responses will begin in May 2013.

      NASA will conduct an informational teleconference for the Announcement on March 27, 2013 from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. EDT.

      Organizations interested in learning more about this education opportunity, including teleconference details, can access the Announcement Web page at:

      To learn more about NASA’s broad education initiatives, visit:

      Cooperative Agreement Notice for NASA Internships

      The NASA Headquarters Office of Education, in cooperation with the NASA Johnson Space Center and other NASA centers, has released a Cooperative Agreement Notice, or CAN, for NASA internships.

      Institutions eligible to respond to this CAN are limited to higher education institutions, nonprofit organizations and consortia or groups of organizations and institutions serving higher education students, whose mission includes capturing student interest and/or improving student performance in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM, or related fields. The estimated annual value of the award is $3,000,000 to $10,000,000 per year, for a period of performance not to exceed 5 years.

      It is anticipated that this award will be an indefinite delivery indefinite quantity and cost reimbursement cooperative agreement. The recipient of this single award will support sub-agreements at 10 NASA centers delineated by unique cooperative agreement numbers assigned by the NASA Shared Services Center.

      All proposals in response to this CAN must be submitted electronically. Electronic proposals must be submitted in their entirety by 11:59:59 PM Eastern Time on the proposal due date of March 13, 2013.

      For more information and instructions for submitting a NOI and proposal, visit{445EE623-416B-4524-69CF-EA75FCC529BD}&path=open.

      Questions about this CAN should be emailed to Tamra Ross at

      Historical NASA Space Artifacts Available for Educational Use

      NASA is inviting eligible educational institutions, museums and other organizations to screen and request historical space artifacts.

      The artifacts represent significant human spaceflight technologies and processes and the accomplishments of NASA's many programs. NASA and the General Services Administration worked together to ensure broad access to space artifacts and to provide a Web-based electronic artifacts viewing capability. The Web-based artifacts module is located at

      Eligible participants may view the artifacts and request specific items at the website through March 4, 2013. Only schools and museums are eligible to receive artifacts. They must register online using an assigned Department of Education number, or through the state agency for surplus property in their state.

      The artifacts are free of charge. Eligible organizations must cover shipping costs and any special handling fees. Shipping fees on smaller items will be relatively inexpensive, while larger items may involve extensive disassembly, preparation, shipping and reassembly costs. NASA will work closely with eligible organizations, on a case-by-case basis, to address any unique special handling costs.

      Special items, such as space shuttle thermal protective tiles and packages of three packets of astronaut food, also are offered on a first-come, first-served basis. Instructions for requesting artifacts and special items are linked on the website home page.

      To date, more than 7,500 artifacts from programs, including the Mercury, Gemini, Apollo, space shuttle and the Hubble Space Telescope, have been given to eligible museums, schools, universities, libraries and planetariums in all 50 U.S. states.

      Questions about this opportunity should be directed to

      NASA Postdoctoral Program Fellowships

      The NASA Postdoctoral Program (NPP) supports NASA’s goal to expand scientific understanding of the Earth and the universe in which we live.

      Selected by a competitive peer-review process, NPP Fellows complete one- to three-year Fellowship appointments that offer scientists and engineers unique opportunities to conduct research in fields of science relevant to NASA.

      These opportunities advance NASA’s missions in Earth science, heliophysics, planetary science, astrophysics, space bioscience, aeronautics and engineering, human exploration and space operations, and astrobiology. Opportunities are available at NASA Centers and other NASA-approved sites.

      As a result, NPP Fellows contribute to national priorities for scientific exploration, confirm NASA’s leadership in fundamental research, and complement the efforts of NASA’s partners in the national science community.

      U.S. citizens, Lawful Permanent Residents, and foreign nationals eligible for J-1 status as a Research Scholar may apply. Applicants must have completed a Ph.D. or equivalent degree before beginning the fellowship, but may apply while completing the degree requirements. Applicants who earned the Ph.D. more than five years before the deadline date are categorized as Senior Fellows; all applicants, no matter their category, must apply and become eligible for an NPP award via the same process.

      Interested applicants may apply by one of three annual application deadlines: March 1, July 1, and November 1.

      For more information and application procedures, go to

      Questions about this opportunity should be directed to

      Titan and Europa Essay Contest

      NASA scientists want to know where students in grades 5-12 think NASA's next big mission to the outer solar system should go: Saturn's moon, Titan, or Jupiter's moon, Europa. Both of these moons are fascinating places to explore. Learn why astrobiologists want to explore these worlds.

      The Titan and Europa Essay Contest challenges students to learn more about astrobiology and the engineering challenges of exploring Titan and Europa. After watching short videos and learning about both moons and how missions to explore each would work, students should write an essay (no longer than 500 words) to explain why NASA should go to Titan or to Europa.

      Essays must be submitted by a teacher by Feb. 28, 2013.

      NASA will send certificates of participation to all students who enter the contest. Winning essays will be posted on a NASA website, and the winners and their classes will be invited to participate in a question-and-answer teleconference, videoconference or webchat with NASA scientists.

      This contest is sponsored by the NASA Astrobiology Institute, with participation from the Titan Astrobiology team and the Astrobiology of Icy Worlds team at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif.

      For more information, visit

      If you have questions about this contest, please email

      What If? Live Student Design Challenge

      Candy, soda and other everyday items will be the tools of the trade for teenage rocket makers competing in the What If? Live Student Design Challenge. Registration is open through Feb. 28, 2013, for the worldwide contest, in which 14- to 18-year-old students will design experimental propulsion systems using materials that are inexpensive and easy to obtain.

      The challenge is designed to excite students about science, technology, engineering and mathematics. The goal is to develop students' creative and analytical abilities by learning about the growing need for green fuels and designing a vehicle propulsion system using commonly available materials, including sweet treats and carbonated beverages. Students may work alone or in groups of as many as four. Participants must create a research plan, write a research paper, develop and build the propulsion system, make a video showing the vehicle in action and submit the video to judges via

      A panel of scientists, astronauts and educators will judge the entries and select finalists. There will be one winning design in each age category. Winners will be announced in May and will receive special recognition from NASA and Ahoora.

      To register, submit research and learn more about vehicle design, the official rules and other information about the What If? Live Student Design Challenge, including view a two-minute video of the propulsion system in action, visit

      Questions about this contest should be emailed to

      The Search for Life Beyond Earth: Mars Educator Conference

      Bring your classroom along to share NASA's great quest for habitable environments beyond Earth, starting with Gale Crater on Mars. Using NASA's newest rover, Curiosity, learn how to use NASA astrobiology and the exploration of Mars to enhance life science and physical science topics in your classroom. Engage your students to think critically about big questions, such as “What are the conditions for life?” and “Is there life beyond Earth?”

      Special Mars and astrobiology guest presenters from NASA will share the latest news. NASA education specialists will show hands-on activities relating to science, technology, engineering and mathematics to help educators extend their students' learning and demonstrate how activities align to the Next Generation Science Standards.
      Conference participants will receive lesson plans, NASA materials and resources

      The conference will take place on March 2, 2013, at the Arizona State University main campus in Tempe, Ariz.

      The conference is free, but registration is required before Feb. 26, 2013.

      For more information and to register for the conference, visit

      Questions about the workshop should be directed to

      5th Annual NASA STEM Educators Workshop Series

      Join NASA for the 5th Annual NASA STEM Educators Workshop Series taking place March 4-6, 2013, in Charlotte, N.C.

      This workshop series will explore engineering design challenges, problem-based learning activities, distance learning modules, inquiry-based lessons and hands-on projects. Each workshop will be led by experienced educators and education public outreach specialists who will model pedagogical techniques and methods to foster problem-based learning, science as inquiry, technology integration and best practices. Workshops target inservice, informal and preservice teachers who serve the K-12 education community.

      Registration is free. The deadline for registration is Feb. 25, 2013.

      For more information and to register for the workshops, visit

      If you have any questions about the workshops, please contact Brandon Hargis at

      2013 Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowships

      Caltech's Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowships, or SURF, project introduces undergraduate students to research under the guidance of seasoned mentors at Caltech or NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, or JPL. Students experience the process of research as a creative intellectual activity and gain a more realistic view of the opportunities and demands of a professional research career.

      SURF is modeled on the grant-seeking process. Students collaborate with potential mentors to define and develop a project and to write research proposals. Caltech faculty or JPL staff review the proposals and recommend awards. Students work over a 10-week period in the summer, mid-June to late August. At the conclusion of the project, each student will submit a technical paper and give a SURF Seminar Day oral presentation.

      All application materials must be received no later than Feb. 22, 2013. For more information, visit

      Please email any questions about this opportunity to the Caltech Student-Faculty Programs office at

      NASA’s Glenn Research Center's High School Shadowing Project

      NASA's Glenn Research Center, or GRC, in Cleveland, Ohio, is accepting applications for its High School Shadowing Project sessions for the 2012-2013 school year. This opportunity provides students with a one- to five-day career exploration experience at Glenn Research Center.

      The project provides high school students with an opportunity to explore career possibilities in a research and development environment while under the guidance of a NASA scientist, engineer, technician or administrative professional that serves as the student’s mentor. Students are provided information about various careers, career paths and Glenn Research Center educational resources and programs.

      Applicants must be U.S. citizens and at least 16 years old by the application deadline. Application periods are still open for three sessions scheduled for the 2012-2013 school year.

      Session III --
      Application Deadline: Feb. 22, 2013
      Session Date: March 26, 2013

      Session IV --
      Application Deadline: Feb. 22, 2013
      Session Date: April 24, 2013

      For more information about this opportunity, please visit

      Questions about the GRC High School Shadowing Project should be directed by email to or by telephone to 216-433-6656.

      NASA to Host Google+ Hangout Live With International Space Station

      NASA will host its first Google+ Hangout live with the International Space Station from 11 a.m. to noon EST, Friday, Feb. 22, 2013. This event will connect NASA's social media followers with astronauts on the ground and those living and working aboard the laboratory orbiting 240 miles above Earth.

      Google+ Hangouts allow as many as 10 people to chat face to face, while thousands more can tune in to watch the conversation live on Google+ or YouTube.

      NASA's social media followers submitted video questions before the hangout. During the event, several video questions will be answered by the station crew and astronauts on the ground. Additionally, NASA will take real-time questions submitted by fans. Use #askAstro to ask real-time questions on Google+, YouTube or Twitter during the hangout. On the morning of the event, NASA will open a thread on its Facebook page where questions may be posted.

      The hangout may be viewed live on NASA's Google+ page or on the NASA Television YouTube channel. To join the hangout, and for updates and opportunities to participate in upcoming hangouts, visit NASA's Google+ page at

      Astronauts Kevin Ford and Tom Marshburn of NASA and Chris Hadfield of the Canadian Space Agency will answer questions and provide insight about life aboard the station. Crews conduct a variety of science experiments and perform station maintenance during their six-month stay on the outpost. Their life aboard the station in near-weightlessness requires different approaches to everyday activities such as eating, sleeping and exercising.

      For information about the space station, research in low Earth orbit, NASA's commercial space programs and the future of American spaceflight, visit

      To follow astronauts Marshburn and Hadfield on Twitter, visit and

      Questions about this opportunity should be directed to