Happy New Year Scientists!
So was the International Year of Biodiversity a success?
The official UN page still has lots of resources for biodiversity, including videos and reports. There is a also a good resource of articles and information from the International Institute for Environment and Development. One of the key conservation events last year was COP-10 in Nagoya – the Conference of Parties to the UN Convention on Biological Diversity. There are some good articles on the build-up and outcomes of COP-10 available at Current.com, as well as a summary at Wikipedia. The Guardian’s George Monbiot reviews the conference here, and they also have their own environmental review of 2010.
Eco-wins: new marine parks, recovering waterways, ecosystem pledges in Nagoya, and the hundreds of ground-level conservation and environmental efforts taking place across the globe. Also, 2010-2020 has been declared the decade for biodiversity!
Eco-fails: Deepwater Horizon, we’re still overfishing, forest clearance rampages on and what are we really doing about plastic pollution, water pollution, air pollution, factory farming, habitat destruction and uncontrolled urbanisation?
UN International Year of Forests
Celebrate the forests!
Although global deforestation appears to be slowing down, it is still continuing at an alarming rate, according to the UN’s 2010 report on global forest resources. So what can we do about it in the International Year of Forests?
Check out some of these educational resources:
- UN official IYF page
- Greenpeace resources on deforestation
- CIFOR resources
- Rainforest lesson plans, from Mongabay
- Conservation teaching resources from the Environmental Protection Agency
UNESCO International Year of Chemistry
The International Year of Chemistry 2011 aims to celebrate the achievements of Chemistry and its contrbutions to the well-being of mankind. Head on over to chemistry2011.org, the official page, for a growing wealth of resources and ideas.
Choice Chemistry resources:
- Chemistry2011 resource bank
- Chemistry support for teachers, from the RSC
- Chemistry teaching resources, from California State University, Northridge
- Green Chemistry Resources, from the American Chemical Society
- IBChem.com, for IB Chemistry resources and notes
- MYPChem.com, for IBMYP Chemistry resources and notes
- Nikki Juhl’s MYP Science
Don’t forget that from August 2010 to August 2011 is also the International Year for Youth. Phew – so much to think about and take action on in 2011!
Have a great and productive 2011, and remember that everything we do in class can be applied to life beyond school and to the global issues we face – and you will have to deal with.
SlideBySlide is a free app for the iPad which allows you browse and access SlideShare presentations. SlideShare’s m.slideshare.com mobile apps should also work on phones. If you have an iPad or iPhone, try them out and let me know how it goes.
Can you use these apps on BlackBerries and other mobile phones? If not, you can get pdf readers and ppt apps that will allow you to save the presentations from the network to your devices. Have fun playing with these ideas – how could we make better use of the technologies that you have in class?
Here are some flash tutorials from the team at Hopkins Marine Station, Stanford. They make good use of the properties of the sea urchin’s gametes for studies and learning experiences:
“Gametes of sea urchins yield exceptional experiences in the classroom; teachers and students alike are riveted by being able to observe fertilization, cell division and embryonic development. The gametes are easy to use, the developmental stages are readily seen with the microscope and the rapidity of fertilization and early cell divisions allows the student to ask questions and obtain answers within the bounds of a normal classroom schedule. The utility of urchins for inquiry-based science is unrivaled.”
Head on over there to have a go at some of their labs, including a neat microscope tutorial, practice with microscope measurements, fertilisation and development and a ocean acidification investigation.
This 9-minute clip is an ideal ‘watcher’ to go along with the reader in the Course Companion – it tells the story of the discovery of the DNA double helix structure by Watson and Crick and how their discovery was dependant on the prior work of Rosalind Franklin and the compeitive/cooperative nature of research:
This clip is taken from the vdeo lesson resource provided by Virginia Commonwealth University’s ‘Secrets of the Sequence’ website. They have 50 different videos, each with accompanying lesson plans and activities.
They also have a YouTube channel: VCULifeSciences.
One of the highlights has to be the video archive of surgical operations!
Follow these links for IB topic help:
Or just visit their page for masses of links.
Get on and have a go!
It is produced by Learner.org, a huge and excellent resource for all Science topics (and other subjects, too).
Stanford’s Microdocs project is a well-presented set of video and pdf resources for learning about sustainability and the coral reef ecosystem. Each video is a few minutes long and accompanied by a short article or links to useful sources.
It’s divided into useful topics and easy to navigate (and looks good, too).
And while we’re on the theme of the oceans (again) there’s a brilliant student activity resource centre at the UCLA’s OceanGlobe centre. Everything you could ever need to study marine science.