Teachable Moment: Many answers are a bit simplified but generally a great little web site to explore.
Look around, watch a video, read a story... who knows, you might learn something. If there's something missing, please click on the Share link to tell us about it.
Teachable Moment: Great, tool for simulating real world experiments. I look forward to seeing this evolve.
Fun, interactive, research-based simulations of physical phenomena from the PhET™ project at the University of Colorado.
This web site collects math and science activities from major institutions in one place. A great place to start when looking for projects.
Teachable Moment: NPR's Science Friday is a great show exploring math and science and their web site is a wonderfully rich resource not only for listening to older episodes but also for finding engaging videos and teacher tools.
Science Friday is a weekly science talk show, broadcast live over public radio stations nationwide from 2-4pm Eastern time as part of NPR's 'Talk of the Nation' programming. Each week, we focus on science topics that are in the news and try to bring an educated, balanced discussion to bear on the scientific issues at hand. Panels of expert guests join Science Friday's host, Ira Flatow, a veteran science journalist, to discuss science - and to take questions from listeners during the call-in portion of the program.
Make called Bill a "brilliant science-and-technology documentarian", whose "videos should be held up as models of how to present complex technical information visually" Wired called them "dazzling." Scientific American's blog called him a "smart, easygoing everyman with a firm understanding of the science." You can see 10 of his best videos below. He takes apart an LCD monitor, demonstrates how fiber optic cables work, rips up a hard drive, explains the wonder of a quartz wrist watch, solves the mystery of black boxes, blows up a light bulb filament, reveals how amazing a pop can tab truely is, shows why a cell phone looks like it does, and explains why you always seem to be in the slowest line.
I developed Math Fun Facts in 1994 as a warm-up activity for the calculus courses I taught as a graduate student at Harvard. Calculus was the final math course that most of my students would take, and I worried that they would emerge from college with the mistaken notion that all of mathematics was "just more calculus". Most college students never see the interesting stuff that motivates mathematicians to study the subject.
So, I began to tell them "Fun Facts"---daily mathematical tidbits from all areas of mathematics (not just calculus), meant to arouse their curiosity and fascination with the subject. Fun Facts give students a glimpse that mathematics is full of interesting ideas, patterns, and new modes of thinking.
The student reaction to Fun Facts was highly positive. Once I started, I couldn't stop---students would clamor for them if I forgot to give one. They stopped me after class to discuss them, began to create their own, and were motivated to take other math courses because of the Fun Facts they learned.
I got the idea from something that one of my college professors (John Jones) did; he once wrote an interesting infinite series on the board and called it a "fun fact". I thought to myself: why not do something like this everyday and include brief fun facts from all areas of mathematics? I told myself that if I became a professor someday, I would try it...
So here, on this site, is an archive of many of the Fun Facts that my colleagues and I have collected. I launched this site on July 20, 1999 so that others might use it as a resource and repository of ideas, and it continues to grow. I hope you enjoy this site... do feel free to visit often!
Teachable Moment: Sometimes the best person to teach a challenging concept is someone who has recently learned it and wants to share their own excitment of the discovery. I can't wait to see this video library grow.
MIT has launched an initiative encouraging its students to produce short videos teaching basic concepts in science and engineering. The videos — aimed at younger students, in grades from kindergarten through high school — will be accessible through a dedicated MIT website and YouTube channel. A subset of the videos will also be available on Khan Academy, a popular not-for-profit educational site founded by an MIT alumnus.
The OSP Collection provides curriculum resources that engage students in physics, computation, and computer modeling. Computational physics and computer modeling provide students with new ways to understand, describe, explain, and predict physical phenomena. Browse the OSP simulations or learn more about our tools and curriculum pieces below.
Teachable Moment: I love this web site for ideas of projects to show students. The philosophy of open source and the clarity of the instructions make this an indispensable resource for great STEM projects.
Instructables is a web-based documentation platform where passionate people share what they do and how they do it, and learn from and collaborate with others. The seeds of Instructables germinated at the MIT Media Lab as the future founders of Squid Labs built places to share their projects and help others.