Wikispaces – Private Label – Schools Whitepaper
I'm a big fan of open services (especially when they're free), but wikispaces also provides a premium service for schools wanting a little more control: "Wikispaces Private Label is a complete wiki environment for your school or district. Our powerful and easy to use system lets you create wikis for all your teachers, students, and administrators, while centrally managing them on your own customized, secure, and integrated site. Wikispaces Private Label provides wikis with unlimited collaboration, central administration, control and privacy, and full integration for your school."
EtherPad: Realtime Collaborative Text Editing
This is like a web-based version of subethaedit (which worked only on Macs and only on a local subnet). "Etherpad lets multiple people work [in different colors] on the same text simultaneously." Best of all, no login or account is required for participants, which makes it ideal for use with students.
A Conversation with Lenore Skenazy on Free-Range Kids | Edutopia
This is a fantastic article (about a book I'm genuinely interested in): "The author explains how rampant anxiety over children's well-being diminishes their independence." Clark's a very cautious dude, but he's very independent and we let him do everything he can by himself. I hope we're able to strike this balance for a long time. Luckily, he learned how to sign "help" very early on so it's easy to know when to step in and when we should let him struggle a bit at this point. :)
CoSN Green Computing
Here's yet another green initiative for schools – this one focusing on IT departments: "The Consortium for School Networking (CoSN) Green Computing Leadership Initiative provides tools, tips, and resources for school technology leaders to help reduce their school district carbon footprint."
ePals Global Community
ePals has a whole focus area on Biodiversity: "Understanding a big idea is so much more than just learning the facts. And, biodiversity is one big idea! But, we’ve built a learning path to take you step-by-step towards helping you understand it!"
Welcome to Serve.gov
This is a great new initiative to come out of Obama's presidency, and this tool might be good for getting students involved in local change: "This website is a new portal for you and all Americans to find your own ways to serve in your own communities. Just choose your keyword – "education," "environment," or whatever interests you – and type in your zip code to see what opportunities our partner organizations have in your area." Again, perhaps I should ping these folks about our upcoming conference. :)
Google Similar Images
This beta service from Google Labs "allows you to search for images using pictures rather than words. Click the 'Similar images' link under an image to find other images that look like it. Try a search of your own or click on an example below." I suspect this will replace Google Images (or be integrated into it) sometime in the future. Meanwhile, you might try this out with students to see if it helps. I'd still love to see a usage rights advanced search option on Google Images in any case.
39.3 Miles til Margaritas | The Point
This is an interesting social change initiative, using an interesting social change service, The Point. "This campaign has a tipping point — you pledge money now, but you’re only charged if the total pledges reach $2,000. This way, you know your participation will make a difference."
animoto – for education
Animoto also supports educators directly: "Add Animoto to your classroom's digital storytelling kit… Unlimited Videos For You and Your Students."
animoto – for a cause
"Animoto supports not-for-profits and other humanitarian causes with free pro accounts." Maybe I should contact these folks about the upcoming CLMS/CUE Tech conference – the theme is "Social, Global, and Green."
Google News Timeline
This looks like a great new way to visualize news aggregated by Google… and Google News is already one of my favorite specialized search tools to share with teachers and students. From the about page: "Google News Timeline is a web application that organizes search results chronologically. It allows users to view news and other data sources on a browsable, graphical timeline. Available data sources include recent and historical news, scanned newspapers and magazines, blog posts, sports scores, and information about various types of media, like music albums and movies."