Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day…

…For Teaching ELL, ESL, & EFL

February 27, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

A Beginning List Of The Best Resources On Virtual Reality In Education

My student teachers and I have been making some initial attempts at trying out Google Cardboard with my English Language Learner students (I bought a few plastic ones from IMCardboard – the actual cardboard ones are just too flimsy for my high school classroom).

Unfortunately, the WiFi doesn’t seem up to the task of streaming VR videos. Until we work out that problem, we’re going to experiment with using photos.  One lesson we’re planning to try is to write up a list of the elements that make-up a good VR photo, explore two of them, and then have students write a short argument essay about which one is better (we’re in the middle of an argument essay unit).  Of course, we could do the same exercise with regular photos, but I suspect engagement will be higher doing it this way.

After that experiment is complete, we’ll start using it in our World and U.S. History classes.  I’m still trying to figure out what value-added benefit it gives if we can’t access the VR videos.  All suggestions are welcome (we also have a camera that can take 360 photos, and I’m trying to figure out how we can use that, too).

In the meantime, I thought it would be useful to bring together my past posts about Virtual Reality in education, along with new resources I’ve been collecting.  Feel free to offer your own suggestions.

You might also be interested in  The Best Resources For Organizing & Maximizing Field Trips – Both “Real” & “Virtual”

Here’s what I have so far:

Google Rolls-Out The Coolest Way – Ever – For Students To Take Virtual Field Trip

20 Best VR Apps for Google Cardboard from MakeUseof looks interesting.

Is virtual reality ready for school? is from Brookings.

Reader Idea | New York Times Virtual Reality in the Classroom is from The New York Times Learning Network.

5 Apps to Use with Google Cardboard is from Class Tech Tips.

Ripping Learning off the Page is from Edutopia.

Teachers eye potential of virtual reality to enhance science instruction is from Ed Source.

Coincidentally, later today, Richard Byrne is hosting a Google Hangout on this very topic. If you can’t make it, I assume it will be archived.

February 27, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

If You’re In The UK Or Ireland, World Book Day Is This Week – Here Are Related Resources

April 23rd has been declared “World Book Day” by UNESCO, though it’s celebrated on the first Thursday of March in the United Kingdom.

The Mirror newspaper says “this date was decided after serious thought and lengthy discussion to take into consideration religious holidays, school terms and potential conflict with other charitable activities.

You might find The Best Resources For World Book Day — March 1st useful.

February 27, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

Announcing “Question Week 2017”


Warren Berger, author of “A More Beautiful Question” writes:

I am getting set to launch QUESTION WEEK 2017, an event I’m organizing in partnership with the Right Question Institute and a number of other leading organizations and programs focused on questioning. QUESTION WEEK 2017, runs from March 12 to March 18 (with a nod to master questioner Albert Einstein’s birthday on Monday, March 14). The event is designed to raise awareness of the power and value of questioning.

During Question Week, participating schools and classrooms across the US will conduct questioning exercises with students, sharing the results on social media (On the site, I am providing info that suggests/ explains possible questioning exercises or activities—or schools can do their own version). Visitors to the Question Week website will discover how “beautiful questions” have changed the world around us; they’ll also learn how to ask better questions themselves. And everyone will be encouraged to share their questions on the site, as well as on Twitter and Facebook.

I’ve previously posted many resources from Warren and others at The Best Posts & Articles About Asking Good Questions.

February 26, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

Trayvon Martin Was Killed Five Years Ago – Here Are Related Resources

Trayvon Martin was killed five years ago today.

Analysis: Trayvon Martin’s Death Still Fuels a Movement Five Years Later at NBC News is one article worth reading about it.

In addition, you might want to explore these “Best” lists:

The Best Resources For Lessons On Trayvon Martin

A Collection Of Useful Posts, Articles & Videos On Race & Racism – Help Me Find More

A Collection Of Advice On Talking To Students About Race, Police & Racism

The Best Explanations For Why You Shouldn’t Say “All Lives Matter”

February 26, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

February’s (2017) Best Tweets – Part Four

'Twitter' photo (c) 2010, West McGowan - license:

Every month I make a few short lists highlighting my choices of the best resources I through (and learned from) Twitter, but didn’t necessarily include them in posts here on my blog.

I’ve already shared in earlier posts several new resources I found on Twitter — and where I gave credit to those from whom I learned about them. Those are not included again in post.

If you don’t use Twitter, you can also check-out all of my “tweets” on Twitter profile page.

You might also be interested in The Best Tweets Of 2015 – Part Two.

February 26, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

This Week’s “Round-Up” Of Useful Posts & Articles On Ed Policy Issues

Here are some recent useful posts and articles on educational policy issues (You might also be interested in The Best Articles, Videos & Posts On Education Policy In 2016 – Part Two):

Dismal Voucher Results Surprise Researchers as DeVos Era Begins is from The New York Times. I’m adding it to The Best Resources For Learning Why School Vouchers Are A Bad Idea.

How Segregated Schools Built Segregated Cities is from City Lab. I’m adding it to The Best Resources For Learning About School Desegregation (& Segregation) – Help Me Find More.

Study: Weakening Tenure in Louisiana May Have Caused Thousands of Teachers to Quit is from The 74. I’m adding it to The Best Articles For Helping To Understand Both Why Teacher Tenure Is Important & The Reasons Behind Seniority-Based Layoffs.

‘Alternative’ Education: Using Charter Schools to Hide Dropouts and Game the System is from ProPublica.

U.S. attorney won’t file charges after probe of $1.3-billion iPads-for-all project in L.A. schools is from The L.A. Times. I’m adding it to A Very Beginning List Of The Best Articles On The iPad Debacle In Los Angeles Schools.

How will Trump’s Supreme Court nominee rule on California union cases? is from The Sacramento Bee. I’m adding it to The Best Resources On The Awful Friedrichs Case.

President Trump rescinded the Obama Administration’s guidance on the rights of transgender students in schools, and here are some related articles:

One in Every 137 Teenagers Would Identify as Transgender, Report Says is from The New York Times.

Trans Students Face ‘Detrimental’ Health Effects Without Fed Protection is from NBC News.

My school will fight for transgender students, even if the White House won’t appeared in The Washington Post.

February 26, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

The Best Practical Resources For Helping Teachers, Students & Families Respond To Immigration Challenges

Many teachers, students and families are understandably concerned about the impact of the Trump Administration’s changes on immigration will affect them: What can teachers do if ICE raids the schools? What are the rights of immigrant families if ICE agents knock on their door?

This “Best” list attempts to list useful resources, including multilingual ones, that can provide good advice.

For materials on the “bigger” issue of policy changes, please refer to:

The Best Resources For Learning About President Trump’s Executive Orders On Immigration & Refugees

The Best Resources On The Trump Administrations New Immigration Enforcement Policies

Here, now, are practical suggestions – please suggest more in the comments section:

Know your rights. Remain calm. is from the ACLU.

What immigrant advocates want you to do if ICE agents come to your door is from CNN.

Educators Guide for Immigrant and Refugee Children

Immigrant and Refugee Children: A Guide for Educators and School Support Staff is from Teaching Tolerance.

The Boston Public Schools have put together a great BPS: We Dream Together site that offers excellent multilingual resources. You can read more about it in the Boston Globe, BPS launches website to provide aid to immigrants.

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