Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Exercise and Learning - A New Science About The Brain and Exercise

A book about exercise and learning called, SPARK: A Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and the Brain, by Dr. Ratey summarizes a lot of research about learning. I wrote an article about the book and then made a 4 step study plan for parents and children. Basically its about using more aerobic exercise in your homework plans for the evening so that the brain is more alert. More will be accomplished. However, it takes changing and committing to the idea of exercise rather than relaxing at night. The article is called: Spark: A New Science of Exercise and the Brain - A Parents Guide to Help Students Study at Home
The book is easy to read and motivating to help people change their ideas about studying. If you do regular aerobic exercise you will already know and feel the benefits of more alert thinking after exercising. The interesting new knowledge is that aerobic exercise actually grows new brain cells! Fascinating.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

A Science Project - Tomatosphere

Tomatosphere is a project for grades 2 -11 who want to do some hands-on science and help the Canadian Space Agency. Students who are registered are mailed 2 packages of tomato seeds. One package has been exposed to space conditions such as no gravity and low pressure. The other package is a control package. Students observe and record how long it takes for the seeds to germinate. Teachers enter the results online. At the website at Tomatosphere, there is a lot of information on agriculture in space, space missions, astronauts, Mars and the International Space Station. A very excellent project at an excellent website. This is the second year of involvement at our school for students in grade 2, 4, 5 and 6. Its easy and fun.
I've written an article on the project. It is found at: Tomatosphere: A Simple Space Science Project

Monday, April 20, 2009

Self Esteem for Girls

An email regarding a Dove campaign on girls self esteem, showed an excellent website about hosting a sleepover for girls. The website offered self-esteem programs for adults to show the girls, videos to watch, songs to download, Pj's to purchase, and many other ideas to help discuss issues girls have in this area. Excellent site to show to 8 to 11 year old girls.
Here is the link to the Dove Sleepover for Self-Esteem

Here is the link to the educators part of Dove's website:
Dove Educators Guide
The video I liked on self-esteem is called Evolution. The link to it is here:
and there is a good one called Amy at the video section.

There are quizzes and discussion areas at the dove website. You can register for the sleepover and your city is put on the map. You receive 3 free downloads of music for the sleepover.
Overall the site is well organized, easy to follow and great to pass on to friends. I recommend it.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Helping Writers to Write Online Articles

This very useful article helps those who are writing articles online to get right to the point. It helps you to write articles the way a search engine would find them. Online writing is very different than report writing, blogging, twittering, etc. So this article will help you if you are making the endeavour to write articles. Click here: Web Writing: The Ground Rules
The author, The Barefoot, is a writer at Associated Content. He has his own blog and is a helpful writer for anyone who needs things explained.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Watercolor Art Project For Fall Leaves or Spring Flowers

This is the last in a series of watercolor projects that are easy for students to paint in grades 1 - 8. The shapes of leaves are painted on a contrasting background or flowers for spring. I would suggest tulips, irises or daffodils. Then the details are filled in with a gel pen or fine sharpie marker. I have tried all the watercolor projects and found the Easter Egg watercolor to be very effective. The next one I am trying is the Spring project of a rainbow and umbrella for Grade 5. If there are other ideas you find for watercolor projects, please post them here.
The article for this project is published at Bright Hub. Click here to find instructions and photos:
Easy Watercolor Project for Fall

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Watercolor Art Project - Summer wheatfield theme

This article describes another watercolor art project in the series I've created. It is about painting a background which can be a sunset, with a fencepost in the foreground. The fencepost has barbed wire detail, and the background has wheat or grass detail painted on it. Tips and techniques are included in the article. It links to the other projects in the series. Read about it here: http://www.brighthub.com/education/k-12/articles/31176.aspx

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

How to Recycle Your Old Computers for Money

This interesting article discussed a website for recycling old computers, ipods, phones that you may not want to sell, or can't sell because they are a little older. You access a website, give details about the computer and they estimate what they will give you for it. They take it apart usually for parts to recycle it. Its much better than dumping it in a landfill, but you have to take into account the money to ship it. It is located in the U.S. For more information click on this link to the article at Bright Hub:
It sounded like a great idea. We need a company like this based in Canada.