Friday, November 30, 2012

Make Your Students Content "Goorus"

Here's something new....

Ya know what? Lesson planning is hard. Planning with technology is in many ways more daunting because we are expected to use fabulous resources, videos, interactives and whatever else to claim we are "21st century teachers." But finding those incredibly awesome resources is SOOOoooo time consuming and frustrating.

One site that is making resource gathering easier is Gooru.

Gooru is an online education-based search engine. Say you're looking for a good video or interactive to help kids understand the slope of a line. You type "slope" into Google and begin the slow and arduous process of looking at one resource at a time to assess whether it fits your needs. You also have to wade through sites that have NOTHING to do with your search as well as annoying ads for dating sites and getting rid of belly fat.

By contrast, when you search "slope" in Gooru, you get tons of resources, categorized by type (video, interactive, textbook, quizzes, etc.) and you know it's been reviewed by teachers and approved for use. Gooru also is run by a non-profit, so there's no danger of running into a cost wall when looking for resources, and there's no pop-up ads to get in your way.

I mean seriously, isn't this search result:

better than this search result?

The Google search yielded one, maybe two usable sources...the Gooru search returned 16 in the screen shot - there were more on the page!

But it gets better....

When you search a topic, you can look at individual resources, or you can view collections. Now these are fabulous. The collections have been put together by teachers - they include selected resources and are arranged in a learning path for the kids. YOU HAVE FULL ACCESS TO THESE!

And here's the best part.....

Gooru is absolutely free. No cost, no ads. You and your students have full access to any and all resources on this site, and you don't even have to create an account. and since kids don't have to create accounts to get to this information.....wait for it......IT'S APPROPRIATE FOR KIDS UNDER THIRTEEN!


But there's just one thing...

Right now Gooru only provides resources for science, math, and social studies. As an English teacher, this makes me sad. But this site is in beta, and as more teachers begin to use it and add content, it will certainly expand. Having a product of such high quality is worth the wait in my opinion.

So go, explore, and let the Gooru guide you!

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