Earth Primer (fun) and Map of Life (for citizen science)

Best Apps for Teaching & Learning 2016 | American Association of School Librarians (AASL)

Earth Primer by Chaim Gingold

Level: Elementary and Middle School
Platform: iOS money icon

Website external link icon

Earth Primer is a cross between an intro to earth science textbook and an interactive sandbox game. This creative application allows students to play with the powerful concepts that make up the physical aspects of our planet. Manipulate glaciers, volcanoes, biomes, weather systems, and more and experience how all of these structures combine to affect the makeup of our awesome planet.

Tip: Use Earth Primer to reinforce content in an earth science class.

app icon Map of Life by Map of Life

Level: Middle School, High School
Platform: iOS | Android

Website external link icon

Map of Life is a field guide applicable to anywhere in the world. Search species by category and/or location, and contribute to the map by recording your sightings in your location. Several categories of species are represented, such as trees, mammals, birds, fish, amphibians, and reptiles. Choose a type of species and view images, read about characteristics and habitat, and view a map showing range. Helps with conservation efforts worldwide!

Tip: Great application for classes using GIS data. Use Map of Life on science field trips to report wildlife and to identify plants and animals.

Environmental and Public Health Indicators — database from EPA

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has released updated environmental and public health indicators and made them available in an online database. “This is an online update to EPA’s Report on the Environment. Users can explore 85 individual indicators– on our air, water, land, human exposure, health and ecological condition– using interactive graphs, tables, and maps, and download the data for each indicator.”

Source:  ResearchBuzz by Tara Calishain, July 21, 2015

WorldCat database reaches 2 billion holdings

“WorldCat is a database of bibliographic information created and continuously updated by some 25,000 OCLC member libraries around the world. WorldCat records describe specific works and contain a listing of institutions that own an item, referred to as “holdings.” Institutions use holdings information to create local catalogs, arrange interlibrary loans and conduct reference work.”

“WorldCat was created in 1971 so that libraries could share cataloging information from a central database, increasing workflow efficiency and the ability to locate and loan materials. It took the OCLC cooperative almost 34 years, from August 26, 1971 to August 11, 2005, to add 1 billion holdings in WorldCat. It has taken just seven years and eight months to add the next billion.” 

“WorldCat spans six millennia of recorded knowledge, from about 4800 B.C. to the present. It encompasses records for books, serials, sound recordings, musical scores, maps, visual materials, mixed materials and computer files.”

From OCLC Member Update []

“Find more about WorldCat on the OCLC website, and watch WorldCat grow as libraries around the world contribute to the database.”

(Holdings constitute a higher number than titles.  A(nother) holding is counted for each library that owns a title.