Open Library – a Project of the non-profit Internet Archive

“Open Library is an open project: the software is open, the data are open, the documentation is open, and the team welcomes individual contributions. Whether fixing a typo, adding a book, or writing a widget – it’s all welcome.” from  Open Library

As an educator and Professor, I love this site.  Instead of asking students to buy classic textbooks such as John Dewy’s Democracy and Education, all my students need to do is sign-up for the free library, download the book as a PDF and read it for free.  A search function for keywords is incorporated and extremely helpful in pulling content up. Nearly three million books are available in digital form, some can be borrowed, some can be downloaded and read.  In addition, there are books in other languages than English such as Italien, Greek, Chinese, and German.  For example, one can find the complete Die Harzreise by Heinrich Heine. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe has 251 books in German dedicated to him. Pindar’s The Olympian and Pythian Odes are in this realm as is Gildersleeve’s Latin Grammar and Athenaze: an introduction to ancient Greek. Interested in learning Chinese? You can borrow: Conversational Chinese, with grammatical notes
prepared by Teng Ssŭ-yü.

It is possible to borrow up to five eBook titles for 2 weeks each, either in your browser or as a PDF or ePub. Reading is available in Adobe Digital Editions as a PDF or ePub.

 

Portcrash – a Digital Learning Enviroment

Maike Niemeier, the founder of Portcrash, believes that for effective learning children need to form an emotional and physical bond with real-life elements; teaching only digitally would be to abstract. This is why Portcrash is combining digital and analog content and aiming at bridging the gap between traditional childhood education and digital media. Through storytelling and gamification centered around the feisty intergalactic pirate girl Cap’n Portcrash and her crew, children can explore art, physics, chemistry, coding, math, and music in their spare time.

Maike is the creative mind behind Cap’n Portcrash and her crazy crew of pirates. She’s the one who creates the stories, thinks up the extraordinarily long words and wields the paintbrushes and pens. With twenty years of experience in elementary music pedagogy and instrumental teaching, together with her studies of Art and Music Pedagogy at Bielefeld University, she has a firm foundation for offering you a cool learning system.

Maike founded her own school of Art and Music ten years ago while she was still a student, and teaches children, teens and adults. She and her colleagues have run  projects in preschools and schools at all levels, with everything from small groups to entire schools of up to 400 children. She has also been teaching music at a secondary school, the Städtisches Gymnasium in Petershagen, for two years. Her father was an elementary school principal, so she’s well versed in formal education systems and knows what’s important to teachers.

PortCrash

Portcrash is her second company, and she runs it parallel to her music school. It uses books which feature QR-coded links to browse games, experiments, and additional materials to educate children in a playful, humorous way while being based on pedagogic principles. Design, haptics, and audio are tailored to provide children with the conditions they need to improve their focus and to strengthen effective learning.

 

 

The EdTech startup was founded late 2017 with the aim to make education fun for students, teachers, and parents alike. Alongside the educational games, the Portcrash engineering team also created a licensing system for educators: ‘Rock the Boat with Cap’n Portcrash’.

Apps – all themed around Cap’n Portcrash and her piratey pals – take children age four and up on a crazy, adventurous journey into distant galaxies and steer them towards the learning objectives. According to the website “The apps are based on our scientifically-underpinned learning system; that ensures an optimal learning environment.”

Source & Image: Portcrash UG & Co. KG

Portcrash Website

 

Meet Nicola Watkinson, Senior Trade and Investment Commissioner

The Rotary Club of New York International Breakfast Meeting

Nikola WatkinsonIn August 2016 Nicola Watkinson was appointed by Austrade to serve as Senior Trade and Investment Commissioner for North America, responsible for its network of offices covering New York, Boston, Chicago, Houston, San Francisco, Washington, as well as Toronto and Vancouver in Canada.
Nicola Watkinson YouTube Introduction
Nicola joined Austrade in 2003 following a career in the private sector in the UK and with the Victorian Government in Melbourne. Nicola’s career in Austrade spans Senior Trade and Investment Commissioner for South Asia, Consul General Frankfurt, Senior Trade and Investment Commissioner, West Europe, Global Head of Investment and Senior Investment Commissioner for Europe, Middle East and Africa.

She has also worked in North Asian markets with a particular focus on Japan, China and Korea. Nicola has sat on the advisory board of groups such as CSIRO (Australia’s premier research organization), Industry Capability Network, Australia China Business Council and Australian Business in Europe.

New York
May 16, 2018 8:30 AM – 10:00 AM
777 United Nations Plaza
New York, NY 10017
United States

Advance reservations required.

EventBrite Ticket reservation

Rotary Project: Hands Across Water

FarmSchoolAs a participant in this cross-cultural education program, RCNY received an update on the project from the Haifa Rotary Club. Dr. Amnon Shefi of Hi-Teach was a major coordinator for this important program. Hands Across Water educated more than one thousand students of Jews and Arabs to work together in search of advanced water solutions which was the theme of the successful year.

The Rotary Hands Across Water program was run by the Haifa Rotary Club in collaboration RCNY and many other clubs and districts, harnessing the power of our Rotary collective.  Together, Rotary’s Hands Across Water cross-cultural water project emerged as an inspired science education program which has been running large water projects.  Hands Across Water  culminated in a graduation event held  in honor of the International Water Day

In 2010, a successful collaboration was established between the Rotary Club of Coral Springs-Parkland, Florida and the Rotary Club of Lod, Israel to utilize principles of water conservation within schools as a platform for promoting social interaction between various ethnic and religious communities in Israel.

HandsacrosswaterBeginning with the diverse and underserved City of Lod, a rainwater harvesting system was constructed at two anchoring institutions – the Ha Mapilim School and the Agricultural Learning Center (Farm School) – serving as a joint, demonstrative tool for ten nearby schools (three Arab Israeli/Palestinian and seven Jewish) to utilize for student’s hands-on learning. A third anchor was added with Gany Aviv School for advanced activities. The innovation and excitement generated by these efforts has served as a catalyst for further cross-cultural exchange amongst the schools, resulting in complementary sustainability projects and an adoption of a culture of conservation.

Building the Model – Hi Teach

With continued leadership and support provided by the pilot schools, surrounding community, and Rotary partners, these initial efforts served as a foundation for an expansion of the program.

In 2015, Israel was awarded its largest Global Grant from Rotary International to utilize principles of water conservation as a platform for promoting cross-cultural exchange amongst 10 schools of diverse ethnic and religious backgrounds. The program officially took on the title: Rotary Hands Across Waters (RHAW).

Handsacrosswater2

Initiated by the Rotary Club of Haifa, Israel and the Rotary Club of Coral Springs-Parkland, FL, RHAW is a growing partnership of over 25 leading public, private, and NGO organizations, including Technion University, Ministries of Education and Economy, local water authorities, and NASA’s GLOBE Program. RHAW is transforming the next generation of water leaders to collectively address our most pressing environmental issues.

Hands Across Water Video

 

Sciterra, Innovation in the Academic Marketplace

sciterra
Sciterra is a long overdue online marketplace designed to streamline the gathering and sharing of learning content.  Academics, teachers, indeed anyone who writes and publishes now has an opportunity to promote their textbooks on Sciterra.  Sciterra is an easy to use academic content marketplace for content marketing and distribution. It also provides all the tools needed for content creators to create, customize, publish, promote, sell, share and distribute to professors and students.
Sciterra a welcome disrupter in the publishing landscape where the average publishing process of 2-3 years is way too slow to provide current and relevant content in this quickly shifting environment where our knowledge half life becomes ever shorter.  Many students, find traditional textbooks to be an expensive and nearly useless fact of life in college.  Ineffective learning ensues, with whole chapters skipped because the content is not engaging or features dated content.  In addition, the market is controlled by five large publishers and their printers. Sciterra technology reinvents publishing for the mobile, digital era by building engaging, interactive learning content combined with superior digital publishing and distribution solutions.
Here a summary of the modular Sciterra technology available for publishers which consists of:

A content creation platform that provides content creators and administrators a publishing platform with the features they need to create and distribute content to various digital channels. It allows content owners to reuse existing content to create customized books, course content, and learning materials—without going through extensive editorial processes. It gives content owners control over their content creation and distribution process. All content is stored in a central content management repository for easy access.

Production of high quality content with updated pagination, consistent look-and-feel, automatic updates of cross-references, automatic index creation, optimization for various devices, and many other advanced content features. Content owners can even add rich media like video, slideshows, and animations to engage the audience

Media Library: to easily create and manage dynamic QR Codes for multimedia content (eg. videos). Our platform provides all of the functionalities needed to manage and assign new content. QR Codes can be redirected to new content, performing of batch actions, designing of QR Codes and more.

Digital Rights Management (DRM System) to encrypt and securely distribute digital content. It controls rights management and encryption for content protection and secure content fulfillment for delivery to user (and mobile device).

Mobile eReader applications to allow users/readers to study.  A robust high-end reading app that really leverages the power of the new mobile and cloud technologies to bring reading back to its essence.

And yes, you will get an ISBN number!

These solutions are interesting for universities and professors  to create and instantly deploy content to readers. The technology can be used in modules or as a complete end-to-end solution. Sciterra also customizes books for clients to integrate specific and unique needs to their publication.

20180115_172631Here the link to set up your account on the Sciterra Homepage
Create your own web page and write that book you have always wanted to write!