No: 198

VT's FREE Newsletter for Educators - Insight, Inspiration and Ideas that Work!

Hello Everyone,
This year I hope to gain more supporters, to cover some of the newsletter costs.
Some folk have already become supporters and received the first in the series about BIG IDEAS for use in the classroom K-6 and beyond.
The next instalment is on Pythagoras and his Amazing Triangle, and yes kindergarten can start with the visual version, that's exactly where Pythagoras started.

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So Become a VT supporter it's just $10.00 for the whole year and receive the 'BIG IDEA' series FREE.
What will you get in the 'BIG IDEA' series, well you'll get Concept Based Math Ideas that can be taught from Kindergarten to Stage 3+.
The first in the series on Fractals has already been sent out, this week it will be Pythagoras, then Fibonacci and the 4 Colour Theoreum. And YES Kindergarten can get involved in this too, and they will love it. All the the 'BIG IDEA' documents will contain links, BLMs, Apps and of course great ideas.
So become a supporter now and receive all '4 BIG IDEA' pdfs. in 2015 FREE
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Welcome back to 2015
Companies fail because they missed the future.
Larry Page CEO of Google
This can also be applied to Education
Education will fail if it missed the future.

On spaghetti sauce - Malcolm Gladwell

Story of Howard Moskowitz and how he reinvented spaghetti sauce and made us all happier.
WATCH this fabulous video by Malcolm Gladwell. This is such a metaphor for how we deliver learning to our children. Fundamentally changed the way we make people happy. There is no good mustard mustard or bad mustard there is no perfect mustard or imperfect mustard, there are only different kinds of mustard that suit different types of people. People in the cooking world were osessed with universal, looking at finding out one rule for everyone, now it is about the search for variability.
So let's break the kids into learning clusters(not just ability groups) and make them happier. Embracing the diversity of human beings we will find a surer way to true happiness and better learning.
I also loved the TEDEd "Dig Deeper" learnign option -
"Take a trip to a nearby grocery store. Working with classmates, try to locate the brand and item that offer the greatest number of varieties (e.g., the various scents of Dawn dishwashing liquid; flavors of Jell-O; etc.). Gather data for at least 20-30 brands/items across the store. Then, organize and analyze the data. Is there greater variety available in certain categories (e.g., cereal vs. ice cream vs. bread)?

Most people enjoy a good infographic. Actually according to Topsy, on February 4th 2015 , 11,659 people have included the word “infographic” in a tweet. Info graphics are a visually stunning way to deliver facts and statistics. Children can make their own infographics to explain data.

They also require lots of research, reading, and analysis to create. Sounds like a perfect activity for students.

Once a gain a picture is worth a thousand words. Microsoft Excel is great to use for charts and graphs. But you can even get more visual and creative. Check out some of the info graphics below. Young students can start with simple visuals, older students can work out formulas for areas of circles squares etc and represent them as proportional percentages, and make art math masterpieces.

Turns it into a landscape you can explore with your eyes, an information map.
We are all visualisers now. There something quite magical about visual information it is effortless

“Making an appeal to the eye when proportion and magnitude are concerned, is the best and readiest method of conveying a distinct idea.”
1801 William Playfair
Apart from that they can look really cool!
5 MAIN Reasons to Use Info Graphics
1. To represent data
2. To tell a story
3. To illustrate facts or research.
4. To illustrate a timeline
5. To demonstrate a process, flowchart.
LOOK at Examples
InfoGraphic Sport
Snake Oil Suplements Scientific Evidence for nutritional suplements
Cehck out the rest of their data info at Informaton is Beautiful
MAKE your own
Easelly - make your own info graphic online and download or share with others.
With two colours and two labels, it’s hard to miss each infographics big point. Especially the chickens.
Easelly allows users to create visual ideas online. You can choose from a series of templates or start from scratch and upload your own images.
Microsoft Excel is also a great starting place for an info graphic. Insert a background image. and import images.
WATCH a video
The beauty of data visualization - David McCandless (stage 3 and up)
David McCandless turns complex data sets, like worldwide military spending, media buzz, and Facebook status updates, into beautiful, simple diagrams that tease out unseen patterns and connections. Good design, he suggests, is the best way to navigate information glut -- and it may just change the way we see the world.
Using visual graphing to represent figures we collect. Become a Data Journalist.
The visual shows how often each key gets pressed relative to the rest for a given piano piece. It is a piano-looking histogram, named a Pianogram! You can take a look at the pre-loaded options, try uploading your own piano songs (MIDI files only), or download the pianogram as a PNG image. Enjoy!
This one is for chopsticks.
fghhg. What it means to ME(the teacher)
Paper. js
Paper.js is an open source vector graphics JavaScript framework built on top of HTML5 canvas
Paper.js uses vector geometry coding. It is a great way to encourage kids to start coding. the coding for each project can be changed the code online and then 'run' the result.
Some of the examples are amazing
Take a look at the tutorials as well.
Suitable for advanced stage 3 and up for coding. Everyone form kindergarten up will love the visuals particualrly the tadpoles.
Public Domain Images Pixaby - this is a great site for kids to search and find images they can use without copyright issues.

Over 310,000 free photos, vectors and art illustrations

Great range of images.
I do answer all emails so send them along with your questions ideas and great sites.

Hi Cathy,
Loved the Fractals pdf, the kids had great fun with it, I am looking forward to receiving the rest. My year 2 is loving it.
Thanks David
Glad you liked them, thank for supporting VT.
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The opinions expressed here are purely those of the editor, Cathy Brown. All other small print clauses apply. Such as: Use at your own risk. Nothing in life is guaranteed. If it doesn't work for you send an email or tweet me.
Editor: Cathy Brown

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