Thursday, January 20, 2011

Toyota Tapestry Grant

This year, Toyota will be awarding 50 grants of $10,000 each! Now is the time to get brainstorming with a few other teachers you know or individually to get some money for technology in your classroom! The award is for any elementary, middle school, or high school science teacher. The grant focuses on environmental education and the subcategories you may choose from are biotic (living factors) and abiotic (nonliving factors pollution, oil, water, soil, and human interactions).

The deadline for your proposal is 11:59pm EST on Tuesday, February 23. You still have time to write a fantastic grant. Think of the possibilities of exploring your environment with GPS! To get you started with possible ideas, the educators at The Science Spot have prepared an amazing plan complete with cache clues and everything to get your students out on an environmental hunt. Be sure to check out this GPS lesson called EarthQuest! Just scroll down the page.

Check out the proposal requirements for the Toyota Tapestry Grant here. Good luck!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Sausage Links?

For some "meaty" online links, check out the new Links Page here at The Educacher blog. I have begun to compile a list of some of the best on the web I've found that relate to the thrill of the hunt, particularly for elementary/junior high aged learners. Please comment to this post with other helpful links you find along the way so that our list can be as comprehensive as possible!
Keep 'em caching!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Something's been bugging me...

Travel bugs are a terrific way to give your students a taste of the real world via a "Flat Stanley-ish" experience. If you've never heard of them, take a second and read up on the Travel Bugs FAQ at Essentially, you can attach these trackable tags to a small object, register it online (a la Webkinz), place it in an existing geocache, and track its traveling progress online. It's very simple and there are plenty of travel bugs that have been touring the globe for a long time. Check out these great bugs that have somewhat of an educational theme:

Last Letter Morphing Bug
Race to Nome
DJ's Algebra TB of Goodness

Feel free to add any more good ones you find in the comments section of this blog!

If you're feeling up to the challenge, why not purchase a travel bug (around $5.99 USD from Groundspeak) and set your students to the task of creating an educational mission for it. You then could use the travel bug to have students collect information (geographical, mathematical, statistical, etc.) as the bug travels. Even if a travel bug is lost or stolen after awhile, the information remains logged on the web so students can continue to view it. Use the graphic organizer below or create your own to help your students brainstorm a unique purpose for their own travel bug!