Archive for August, 2010

150 activities and counting…

I just checked the site, and we now have 150 activities! That’s not as traditional as 100 or 500, but it’s a point to celebrate anyway.

As excited as I am to have such a growing library of activities to pull from as I start school here in Northern Virginia, the biggest satisfaction will be when a struggling first year teacher has one central place to go to find activities that get students excited about science. As we open the doors and get the support from many other talented teachers, we’ll have a REAL tool to help reach many learning styles and ability levels. We can finally bring together the efforts of many people, in a way that we can actually implement in the classroom!

Best wishes as you get ready for school,
Phil

Improvements to the Site

Over the weekend, you may have noticed a few changes to the site. As you know we are constantly and aggressively improving based on your feedback so sharing any thoughts both positive and critical are very important to our team. Please continue to share with us using this blog or by using the Contact Us button on the site.

Most notable of the changes we made this weekend was the introduction of Commenting on each activity. We believe developing and maintaining quality activities is reliant upon the power of the community. We encourage you to start commenting on other activities on the site that your fellow volunteers have created.

Another minor but important change is when you view search results; it is now possible to see the ‘rating’ for each activity.

Other changes are less noticeable and primarily ┬ábug fixes. In about a month we hope to introduce another more significant set of improvements to the site which will include enhancements to the experience for creating and editing activities. These changes will be based on your feedback so don’t be shy and share your thoughts openly and freely.

We cannot thank you all enough for taking time out of your summer to help us on this adventure.

-Ben

Great progress

As we’re approaching our second target to share content, I’ve been amazed at the wave of great ideas getting posted. In just one month, and limited to only 7 people, this project is ALREADY a place where I’ll go to find great classroom activities to engage my students. I can’t wait until we get 100 or even 1,000 teachers sharing their best stuff – the combined knowledge will be so powerful.

I’ll definitely be using this to search for your ideas in preparation for the first two weeks of school. I know that getting my kids excited about science is critical, and now I can supplement my plans with some short activities that will reach both my most active AND my most quiet learners.

Thanks so much to the folks who have helped so much (the Alphas) for making it easier to get my students pumped up about science!
Phil