World Earthquakes 2011 Visualization

This infographic is fairly intense. It is a time lapse map of all the earthquakes that occurred in 2011. It was created by someone in Asia, and has I think Japanese writing on it, so much of it can’t be read, but it still is very interesting. It is a great way to show this […]

This infographic is fairly intense. It is a time lapse map of all the earthquakes that occurred in 2011. It was created by someone in Asia, and has I think Japanese writing on it, so much of it can’t be read, but it still is very interesting. It is a great way to show this kind of information.

When studying plate tectonics, show a portion of this to your students. Have you students do research on parts of this video, each group of students taking a month, or a couple of months, and do research on the earthquakes that occurred during that time period. See if there is any correlation between them, what kind of damage was done, if anything was learned from that particular earthquake. See if your students can find some type of pattern, or lack there of.

Show your students earthquakes that happened in new areas. For instance, in the summer of 2011, there was an earthquake in Virginia that was felt all the way down in Raleigh, NC. What caused an earthquake here? What movement of the plates caused earthquakes that happened elsewhere? Have your students create infographics sharing this information.

Blog: http://visual.ly/world-earthquakes-2011-visualization-map

Where Do We Go to Measure Success?

 

We hear it just about everywhere and every time we turn around –– STEM. The country (USA) desperately needs more scientists, Technologists, Engineers and Mathematicians. It’s our way of securing our superiority and prosperity and ramping up S, T, E & M instruction in our schools is the way to succeed.

In preparing for a talk to parents in suburban Edmonton, Alberta this week, I searched for data on Canadian college graduates and the degrees conferred to them. In the process, I ran across a report from the U.S. Institute of Education Sciences.* I copied a data table called Bachelor’s degrees conferred by degree-granting institutions, by field of study, and converted it to an Open Office Spreadsheet (ODS) file to see what I might learn from the data.

The table offered the number of graduates receiving degrees from 32 fields of study, from selected years between 1970 and 2010. I devised and ran formulas that calculated the percent of change in the number of degrees by decade. I also created an additional set of rows that calculated the percent of each years total graduates receiving specific degrees to factor out the effects of changes in the total number of graduates. When sorting the degrees by the percent of increase from 2000 to 2010, the rank was somewhat surprising.

At the bottom of the list, the fields showing the least growth, was Computer and Information Sciences. Though the 1970s saw an impressive increase in computer science degrees (469%), the increase dropped to 42% during the 80s, 33% in the 90s, and then a decline (-32%) during the first decade of the 21st century.

Other fields suffering declines were education, and english and literature/letters, both bested slightly by Engineering technologies, which fell only 17% (-17% change). Falling less than that were agriculture, architecture, liberal arts, sciences, general studies and humanities, topped by engineering, with a 6% (-6% change) decline. Just better than engineering was theology and religious vocations (-5% change).

Enjoying substantial increases in degree from 2000-2010, from high to low, were communication technologies; military technologies; legal professions; parks, recreation, leisure and fitness; homeland security, law enforcement and firefighting; library sciences; and visual and performing arts. (see graph)

Click Graph for Larger Version

This was a fairly startling discovery to me, considering the funding, resources, and time invested in STEM education and its cost to other subject areas, not to mention the political capital gained from reciting the mantra to constituents and voters.

It the results were such a surprise that and I’ve questioned my math several times, checking and rechecking the formulas.  I invite you to double check my spreadsheet [here].

If this is, indeed, an indication of our students’ interests in science, technology, engineering and mathematics during the early 21st century, then is STEM education doing what its suppose to do –– even if test scores are rising?

Please double and triple check my spreadsheet. and if you find problems with my formulas, please post them in my comments.

 

* United States. Institute of Education Sciences. Bachelor’s degrees conferred by degree-granting institutions, by field of study. Washington, 2011. Web. <http://nces.ed.gov/programs/digest/d11/tables/dt11_286.asp>.

Real Estate Market Today

Part of teaching economics is preparing your students for being good at managing their money today, and tomorrow. Part of this is real estate. Now, according to this infographic, it is a good idea to go ahead and buy today, if you are able. Unfortunately, it is doubtful that any of your students are in […]

Part of teaching economics is preparing your students for being good at managing their money today, and tomorrow. Part of this is real estate. Now, according to this infographic, it is a good idea to go ahead and buy today, if you are able. Unfortunately, it is doubtful that any of your students are in the position to do such a thing. But it would still be a good idea to go into the basics of what is involved in purchasing a home, so that students are familiar with it when the time comes.

This infographic begins by saying that this is the best time to buy a home. The market is projected to continue a slight decline and stabilize, and then begin going back up next year. Interest rates are in the same boat. It said that interest rates should be between 4-5%. Unfortunately, most of your student’s won’t be in a position to purchase for another 10-15 years, when the market is supposed to be high again.

As well as this information, it goes into the 5 most, and least promising markets. With your students, discuss why these changes are going to occur, and why the markets are projected as such. Do a mock home buying experience as part of a mock life. Look on websites like Zillow and Realestate.com and search for properties. If anyone you know is purchasing a home, or you have recently, go through the inspection. Ask an inspector, real estate agent, and mortgage agent to come in and talk about what needs to be considered. Ask your students to create wish lists, and see where they break with their lists. And finally, see what the final outcome is. Did they get the home of their dreams? Did they get a fixer upper? Most importantly, are they happy?

Blog: http://visual.ly/real-estate-market-today

10 Irish Inventions that Changed the World

When one thinks of Ireland, one often thinks of drinking, dancing, and green little men. But, in fact, the Irish have invented many major things that changed the world. Ten of them are outlined in this infographic. Some of the ones that may involve  a great deal of discussion include the submarine, color photographic, the […]

When one thinks of Ireland, one often thinks of drinking, dancing, and green little men. But, in fact, the Irish have invented many major things that changed the world. Ten of them are outlined in this infographic. Some of the ones that may involve  a great deal of discussion include the submarine, color photographic, the tank, and splitting the atom.

Every country and culture have invented things to help their daily lives, some say beginning with fire. While our imaginations cannot fathom what will come next, inventions are by no means finished. Challenge your students to imagine life without some of these inventions. Do research on them, and see if someone else was working on something similar, and see the differences. Would the differences have made a greater impact? What would our lives be like without color photography? How would World War 2 have been different without the tank?

Challenge your students to invent something new. Have them think about their daily lives. What would be the best way to improve their lives? Have your students do as much research as possible to write down as many logistics as possible. Who knows, they may end up being able to create it and impact the next generation.

Blog: http://www.goireland.com/craic/10-irish-inventions.htm

The Toxic Twenty

Since the Industrial Revolution of the 19th century, our air quality has gone downhill significantly. Before this revolution, we used human and animal power, as well as water and other natural resources to slowly create what we needed. It was a slow process, but there were very few harmful by products. With the creation of […]

Since the Industrial Revolution of the 19th century, our air quality has gone downhill significantly. Before this revolution, we used human and animal power, as well as water and other natural resources to slowly create what we needed. It was a slow process, but there were very few harmful by products. With the creation of the engine, people realized that they could create things much faster. But it took quite some time to realize exactly how harmful all of these by products were to us, long-term. It took quite some time for us to develop the technology to measure pollutants in the air, and realize that chemicals remained that we couldn’t see.

This infographic, found on Good.is, shows the toxic 20, or the top 20 air polluted states. Is your state on the list? It also shows the health risks involved in breathing in these chemicals. It’s no wonder that health problems have significantly increased in recent years. And finally, it shows the main ways this pollution gets into our air.

Discuss with your students the causes and implications of air pollution. Do they think it is worth it, to be able to have all the amenities we have today? How is there generation going to suffer 20, 30 or 40 years from now, or the next generation? What can we do to stop and even reverse this pollution?

Blog: http://goo.gl/LQ2dR

Which Social Networks Take Home the Gold

Ignite Social Media does a report on social media networks every year, and based on the 2012 research, this infographic was created. This infographic is a great example of a well laid out infographic. Using various font sizes and font colors, it categorizes the various information shared. It also shares a wide variety of information […]

Ignite Social Media does a report on social media networks every year, and based on the 2012 research, this infographic was created. This infographic is a great example of a well laid out infographic. Using various font sizes and font colors, it categorizes the various information shared. It also shares a wide variety of information and by doing this, it doesn’t jumble the information up. Suggest to your students that when they are creating an infographic, organize the information in just a few categories (three is the best), with just a few (once again three is the best, but maybe four or five) sub categories.

This infographic does a great job of comparing various demographics and their social media use. According to this infographic, men and women use social networks equally, but women use Pinterest most, while men us Dribbble. It also shares what sites are used by those under the age of 10, over the age of 65, those who make over $150,000, and those with a graduate degree. It then continues by sharing the current rising and falling trends of various social media sites.

Ask your students to do research on the social media sites, and try to figure out why some are doing well and some aren’t. For instance, what makes Pinterest so wonderful? Why is Facebook still thriving and Myspace and Friendster failing? How much do they think is the novelty and the use of the various sites, and how much is it just trends?

Blog: http://goo.gl/clg3o

The Lifespan of Storage Media

With this infographic, give your students a blast from the past with the history and lifespan of storage media. Now, people are able to store everything online via “the cloud,” but this was not always the case. Throughout history, there have been different innovations in storage media that had different levels of reliability, and were […]

With this infographic, give your students a blast from the past with the history and lifespan of storage media. Now, people are able to store everything online via “the cloud,” but this was not always the case. Throughout history, there have been different innovations in storage media that had different levels of reliability, and were different sizes.

Try to get examples of each of the different types and ask students if they know what each were called and if they have ever seen them. Compare the sizes of each, and the reliability of them. Study the development of them, and share with students your own experiences with them. Hopefully your students will feel lucky to have the almighty cloud.

Blog: http://www.crashplan.com/medialifespan/

Drake Equation: How Many Alien Civilizations Exist?

This is a rather intense infographic, but it would be a good way to start a discussion on the topic of life on other planets. With the landing of Curiosity on Mars and it’s success thus far, I think it’s an interesting topic to discuss. This infographic uses an advanced math problem to decide the […]

This is a rather intense infographic, but it would be a good way to start a discussion on the topic of life on other planets. With the landing of Curiosity on Mars and it’s success thus far, I think it’s an interesting topic to discuss.

This infographic uses an advanced math problem to decide the chances of, and how many alien civilizations exist. But of course, this can only be proved by further exploration. It will be interesting what will be discovered on Mars, to see if life has existed on Mars, and the conditions that may allow for human colonizations.

Use this infographic to introduce Curiosity and the Mars exploration. What has been discovered? What does Mars look like? Based on discoveries, do your students believe we are alone?

Blog: http://goo.gl/KQOZE

Back-to-School: Then and Now

Here is another infographic to make students think, and hopefully be grateful for what they have. This infographic compares students (specifically college, but many things are applicable to grade school students) between different time eras, and even makes some projections. It talks mostly about access to and use of technology, but it also makes some […]

Here is another infographic to make students think, and hopefully be grateful for what they have. This infographic compares students (specifically college, but many things are applicable to grade school students) between different time eras, and even makes some projections. It talks mostly about access to and use of technology, but it also makes some references to other areas.

This would be a great first day discussion about the use of laptops and tablets in the classroom versus the traditional pen and paper and textbook. Ask students what they prefer and why, mentioning that there are applications available that will allow the teacher to peak in on what they are doing, so no doing anything off topic. Share with students the benefits of each. Discuss the reasons why these have been brought into the classroom.

At this point, hopefully introduce a classroom set of some sort of technology. Unfortunately this is not always possible, but at least tie in the available technology in the classroom and the school. Most classroom have at least a few desk top computers for student use. Go over the rules for their use and other important information, including safety.

Blog: http://visual.ly/back-school-then-and-now

It’s the End of the World as they know it

I still remember the first time I heard the Mayan theory of the end of time. I was in middle school. I don’t remember what we were studying, I actually think it was one of those things that a teacher taught in one class and it spread throughout the school, kind of like what a […]

I still remember the first time I heard the Mayan theory of the end of time. I was in middle school. I don’t remember what we were studying, I actually think it was one of those things that a teacher taught in one class and it spread throughout the school, kind of like what a wenis is. But I remember thinking, that’s within my lifetime, but still a long time off. That’s ok. Well it’s just a few months away now, and as the time grows closer, so does the hype. Today’s infographic shares just who believes the end of the world is near.

With all of these tv shows and movies about the end of the world over the past few years, it is surprising to me that more people don’t believe in the Mayan calendar “prediction.” One in seven believe it will in within their lifetime, but only one in ten believe it will end this year. And it is generally in other countries that this is believed. It is also generally believe by those under the age of 35 (low life experience), with a low income, and a low education.

Now how can you use this infographic in your classroom. Study the ways Americans believe the end of the world will come. Many say it will be a natural disaster, a human disaster, or some sort of combination (such as a pandemic). In science, discuss what sort of natural disaster would be necessary to bring down the entire United States. In history, look into historic events, such as the Spanish Flu after WWI, and see how something like this could affect the world as it is today. And finally, share with your students how to reasonably prepare for these events. Have an evacuation plan with your family, and tell them to wash their hands and take care of themselves!

Blog: http://goo.gl/xCAkl