How Do You Find It on the Web?

May 23, 2010 at 9:41 am | Posted in uncategorized | 1 Comment

Posted by Beth Angus

Technology is here and it is here to stay. And everyday that I don’t use today’s available technology, is another day that I fall behind in understanding what’s out there.

This is the dilemma I find myself in. The web has so many tools that can be used to aid our teaching of science and I don’t know where to begin.

Here’s a brief map of where I have travelled.

First I google “Physics Literacy” and I find an article about reforming the over-all curriculum structure of high school sciences. The article tells us about changing the order of science courses: Physics, chemistry then biology. This sounds good. I like it. But I can’t consider this right now as I am a student who is just learning how to teach.

So I try a different search. “Phun Physics” produces a list of interesting topics This first site I try is from the University of Maryland. If you live near there, you can attend one of their demonstration based sessions aimed at energizing high school students. While a teacher should try to use demonstrations sparingly, this sounds like fun and could provide me with some meaningful demos. But it would be too far to go.

Still within my search of “Phun Physics”, I find a promising site that mentions “Geekologie.” I explore this site and eventually get to the Home Page which greets me with a picture of two provocatively dressed twins in “cheetah” costumes and the caption which includes a word not appropriate for students. Let’s get away from here!

So after three brief stops, I come away from the world-wide-web more confused than before. Do I need to search more? Do I need to refine my search terms? I need to find a good search engine.

On the advice of our teachers, I go to

Here I can type in “physics” and get an organized list of resources.  I am introduced to old words but with new contexts: bookmarks, tags. I  can check to see just how many people have already used this resource. I can change and expand my search criteria. I can create my own lists of bookmarks with my own tags.

It seems too good to be true. Is it? The resources and websites that float to the top are the most popular, but are they always the best sources? Are there alternative methods for finding meaningful material, resources and relevant material that I can use in my classroom? How can I determine if a website or other resource is reliable and truthful?

It seems I have the beginning of a plan to surf the web, but it’s not without questions or problems. I welcome your insights and tales of experiences.


1 Comment »

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  1. From my experience, the internet can be both an incredibly valuable yet deceiving resource. I have also experienced the same frustration over bogus search results and misleading website titles. Beyond the simple daily Google search, finding quality web resources for your classroom (or even graduate school) can be particularly difficult. While Google is an effective search engine, it is frustrating to sort through 10 pages of results only to come up empty handed.

    From my experience, your best bet it to let others do the work for you. There is no need to spend copious amounts of time searching for that one perfect internet resource. It sounds like you are on the right track! When I am trying to find a good web resource, I often rely on sources like Delicious or even looking through blogs. Quite often dedicated bloggers have some pretty nice web links as well as links to other quality blogs. It may even be effective to do an advanced Google search and search key terms within “blogs” only. From there you can dig further.

    Hope this helps! If anyone else has other ideas, feel free to post. I could benefit from some new ideas as well!

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