EarthCam offers a plethora of live streaming webcams from locations around the globe. View live footage, aerial photographs, and panoramic views from several national locations, including Ground Zero, Wrigley Field, or Times Square. Or, go international with webcams from Mexico, Japan, Russia, or even Iceland! This would be great for a descriptive writing prompt, a study in setting, or a cross-curricular project to accompany a social studies lesson. For a list of webcams in the United States and abroad, visit:http://www.earthcam.com/network/
I've been using my IPEVO p2v camera for about a week now, and I love it! For the price, you really can't ask for more. I created the screencast below to demonstrate some of the uses for it. For more ideas on how to use this, or any other document camera, visit Tom Barrett's Interesting Ways To Use a Visualizer. My students were dazzled with the ability to project live images from the camera to the Smart Board, and many of them wanted to test it out by projecting each other on the big screen (go figure). I'm excited about how much time and paper this little gizmo will save me; hopefully, it will reduce the amount of frantic races to the copy room when I realize that I forgot to run off one hundred and twenty copies of vocabulary worksheets or bellringer activities. I'm excited about finding more ways to put this camera to use. Please feel free to comment on your own experiences with document cameras.
Note: View my previous post on the IPEVO p2v camera HERE.
On Another Note: The embedded video was shot in a low light setting, similar to the lighting in my classroom when most of the lights are turned off.
According to their website, Grade Cam is "online software that allows teachers to scan grades directly into the gradebook that they are already using." Today was my first day "test driving" GradeCam. I chose one of my English I classes to be my guinea pigs, figuring that if it didn't work well, I wouldn't have invested too much time. I used the free software, along with a Scantron-type bubble sheet that I printed off the website, and an inexpesive webcam that I already had in my classroom. Total cost: FREE. With Gradecam, students were able to scan their own quizzes when they were finished, and get instant feedback, including their overall score, and a list of questions that they missed. Grades were immediately recorded for me in a GradeCam account. I haven't figured out how to upload grades into my school's program yet, but the company claims that it can do just that--amazing! One feature that I like about this software is that, as a teacher, I can go back and view an itemized list of test scores, showing me which questions students missed the most and showing me the frequency of each answer option. This can help me see what concepts I need to review further, or what questions on the test are "bad" questions that confused students and might need to be reworded. Overall, GradeCam is priced just right (free) and is relatively easy to use. My students liked the immediate feedback, and I liked the in-depth results analysis. Now, if only Grade Cam could grade my persuasive essays...
Jessica Pilgreen is a high school English teacher, a Piasa Bluffs Writing Project fellow, and a technology enthusiast. The main purpose of this blog is to help her keep track of all of the fabulous tools out there that she has encountered, but if she can help a few others along the way, that's good, too.