Latest Industry Updates on Edtech and MetaTours

The Homestead Act and a Research Prompt

By |May 22, 2022|

Last Friday the document of the day on the Today’s Document from the National Archives blog was a copy of the Homestead Act passed on May 20, 1862. Seeing the document reminded me of a prompt that I used in a workshop about teaching search strategies that I hosted last summer. If you teach U.S. History, you might want to try the prompt with your own students. Here it is: 

The Homestead Act was signed into law 1862 and the first claims were made under it shortly after. Your challenge is […]

Classroom Posters – The Rules of Civil Conversation

By |May 22, 2022|

When I taught civics learning to create sound, well-reasoned arguments and present them in a calm manner was a significant goal in every course. I always tried to remind them that they can disagree with another person’s opinion without attacking the person. This was particularly tricky when my high school students hit upon issues that they had deeply held opinions about. It always helped to have some ground rules laid out before discussions began. To that end, the folks at School of Thought have recently released a new project called

Five Google Earth Activities to Get Kids Interested in the Outdoors

By |May 21, 2022|

In last week’s Week in Review I mentioned a new book titled Outdoor Kids in an Inside World. In the book Steven Rinella presents a lot of ideas for getting kids interested and involved in learning about nature. In the first chapter he presents a big list of ideas for things that you can do to spark kids’ curiosity before you even head outside. As I was reading through those ideas it struck me that many could be done or be aided by the use of Google Earth.

Inspired […]

Menus, Maps, and Broadcasts – The Week in Review

By |May 21, 2022|

Good morning from western Maine where the warm weather is supposed to returned after a couple of cold and rainy days. We’re planning to have fun enjoying the warm weather with a trip to Storyland! My kids love going there because of all of the kid-friendly rides. I love going there because it reminds me of happy childhood memories and I love watching my kids have fun making memories of their own. How much fun do we have there? My five-year-old yelled, “I’m living my best life!” while riding a rollercoaster at Storyland […]

Qualcomm’s Latest AR Glasses Reference Design Drops the Tether, Keeps the Compute

By |May 21, 2022|

Qualcomm has revealed its latest AR glasses reference design, which it offers up to other companies as a blueprint for building their own AR devices. The reference design, which gives us a strong hint at the specs and capabilities of upcoming products, continues to lean on a smartphone to do the heavy compute, but this time is based on a wireless design.

Qualcomm’s prior AR glasses reference design was based on the Snapdragon XR1 chip and called for a wired connection between a smartphone and the glasses, allowing the system to split rendering tasks between the two devices.

Now the company’s […]

5 Tips for One-Way Masking in Schools

By |May 20, 2022|

Advice for effective one-way masking from Linsey Marr, a leading expert on airborne viruses

Reducing Stress Through Tech – Podcast

By |May 20, 2022|

Earlier this week I had the pleasure to be a guest on podcast hosted by Paulie Gavoni and Drew Carter. Their podcast is called The Crisis in Education Podcast. In the podcast they explore opportunities for sustainable improvements in schools. 

In the podcast I talked with Paulie and Drew about how technology can be used to reduce teacher stress. It had been about a year since the last time I was a guest on a long-form podcast. They brought the rambler out in me and I hope that […]

NearbyWiki – A Mapped Display of Wikipedia

By |May 20, 2022|

NearbyWiki is a new website that displays Wikipedia entries on an interactive map. The purpose of NearbyWiki is for visitors to learn about buildings, statues, and parks by clicking through a map. For example, a search for Boston on NearbyWiki will reveal more than 500 markers on the map in and around Boston. You can then click on any of those markers to learn more about the place they represent. 

In the screenshot below you can see that I clicked on the marker on NearbyWiki for Brewer Fountain in Boston Common. […]

Best Colouring and Painting Apps for Kids

By |May 20, 2022|

Below is a collection of some of the best painting and colouring apps to help your kids unleash their expressive creativity and develop fine motor skills. Kids will have access to a wide variety of…

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VR Attraction Zero Latency Ditches Backpack PCs in Favor of Vive Focus 3 & Wireless Rendering

By |May 20, 2022|

Zero Latency, one of the longest running VR attractions in the out-of-home VR space, is dropping the backpack PCs that were once the backbone of the platform. Now the company says it’s moving to standalone Vive Focus 3 headsets with wireless delivery of PC-rendered VR content.

Unlike a VR arcade, which lets customers play consumer VR content, Zero Latency is a VR attraction offering totally unique multi-user VR experiences designed to be played in a large, shared arena.

Image courtesy Zero Latency

The company, which offers up its platform and experiences to franchisees, has steadily upgraded its VR tech […]

Sense Arena Secures $3M to Expand Ice Hockey VR Training Tools, Add New Sports

By |May 20, 2022|

VR ice hockey training company Sense Arena announced that it’s closed a $3 million investment round, something the startup says will be used to support continued development on its ice hockey training platform as well as expand to new sports.

The funding round was led by J&T Ventures, and includes previous backers Miton and SYNER. According to Crunchbase, this brings the company’s overall outside investment to just over $5 million.

Founded in 2017, the Prague-based company has already become the official VR training provider for a number of NHL teams, including the Arizona Coyotes, Las Vegas Golden […]

TARA – A Planning Tool for New and Veteran Teachers

By |May 19, 2022|

TARA is a new tool designed to help you streamline your lesson planning process. It was designed by a couple of teachers for teachers. Earlier this week I had the opportunity to see a live demo of TARA. There was one feature of it that really stood out to me as something that can be useful to new teachers as well as those of us who have been around for a while. 

In TARA there is a resource bank that you can access while planning your lessons. The resource bank includes […]

Team-based Combat Game ‘World of Mechs’ Coming Exclusively to Quest 2 May 26th

By |May 19, 2022|

A new squad-based online battle game called World of Mechs is coming exclusively to Meta Quest 2 on May 26th, and it’s promising a bevy of mechs to pilot.

Developed by Studio 369 and funded by Meta’s Grant Program, World of Mechs lets you choose from 32 different mechs for online team battles that pits you against teams of four. The game is also said to include five maps, four multiplayer modes, and a 20-mission single player campaign.

The developers say the game will include missiles, jump jets, radar jammers, landmines, and the ability to physically ram other players. […]

Broadcast Google Slides Directly to Your Students’ Computers

By |May 19, 2022|

A few weeks ago I wrote about and published a video about using Display Note to broadcast your computer screen directly to your students’ screens. This week Display Note published some updates that teachers who use Google Classroom and Google Slides are sure to appreciate. 

Display Note now offers a free Chrome extension that you can use to broadcast your Google Slides directly to your students computers. With the extension installed not only can you broadcast your slides directly to your students computers, you can […]

Best Educational Technology Websites for Teachers and Educators

By |May 19, 2022|

Effective technology integration in education requires an evidence-based teaching pedagogy where technology practices are informed by a strong teaching philosophy (the why part). The goal is not to…

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Report Details Apple MR Headset Design Challenges & Internal Hurdles

By |May 19, 2022|

Apple is a notorious black box when it comes to internal projects, although sometimes details based on supply chain rumors shed a sliver of light on what might be happening with the company’s AR/VR headset behind closed doors. Much less common coming from Apple are direct internal leaks, however a report from The Information alleges that 10 people on Apple’s mixed reality headset project team have detailed some of the past design challenges and possible direction the headset may take moving forward.

The report (via 9to5Mac) details some anecdotes reaching back as far […]

An Interactive Map of the Roman Empire

By |May 19, 2022|

A few years ago I wrote about a must-bookmark resource from Stanford University for history teachers and students. That resource is called ORBIS and it has been updated since the last time that I wrote about it. ORBIS is Stanford University’s Geospatial Network Model of the Roman Empire. 

On ORBIS students can calculate the distance and travel times between hundreds of settlements in the Roman Empire. The calculations happen according to the modes of travel that would have been used during the time of the Roman Empire’s greatest height. For example, I calculated the time […]