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Updated by fiona on Apr 08, 2016
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Useful Microsoft posts for teachers #45

Talk to "Rescue Series" Author Diane Gockel about animal rescue and writing

Do your students love books and animals?
Welcome to Second Chance Ranch! Diane is a former teacher and author who would love to talk to your students about caring for animals and the writing process and introduce you to some of her rescued friends!

The Catastrophic Decline of the African Lion

NOTE - LionAid are available to give a Skype talk from Monday to Friday at 10.00am - 3.00pm UK time. To organise a time for this classroom talk, please send an email to

Over the past 50 years Africa's lion populations have plummeted from over 200,000 individuals back in the 1960's to 15,000 today. A shocking number if you consider the size of that continent, and by far the greatest number of remaining lion populations are small, scattered, and highly vulnerable.

While many factors are listed as contributory to the overall decline in lion population numbers (including loss of habitat, conflict with growing human and livestock populations, declines in the number of functioning protected areas, etc), trophy hunting is a highly significant and immediately preventable source of additive mortality. Worryingly, lions are now also being targeted as substitutes for tiger bone to be used in traditional Chinese medicines.

The outcomes for this lesson are clear. The pupils will learn many fascinating facts about the African lion, realise its importance to ecosystems, understand the historical and cultural significance of this iconic species and most importantly, discover how they themselves can really make a difference to help save this magnificent species from dying out before it is too late.

Session outline (this can be adapted)
Brief introduction and objective discussion (5 mins).

Response partners - What do we know about lions already? In pairs or larger groups, the children discuss what they already know about lions and then feedback to us (5 mins).

Introduction - We talk to the children about the African lion, its importance to ecosystems, its historical and cultural significance and then why its very existence is being threatened. (20 mins)

Q and A - (15 mins and upwards)

The video below entitled 'Mary's Life' is an example of work some Year 5 children have made as a result of listening to this talk.

Lighten the mathematics load with OneNote Class Notebooks - Office Blogs

OneNote provides a natural interface for mathematical language. Mathematics is a language. It has its own syntax, grammar and vocabulary. The language of mathematics is represented by a diverse array of symbols, diagrams and characters. Using OneNote with a stylus on a tablet computer helps the user deal with the intricacies of mathematical language by simply handwriting it rather than having to depress a complex sequence of keys. It also…

Learn science in a fun and interactive way with Bing | Bing Search Blog

On March 8, a will be visible in Southeast Asia. The Bing team wants young students to embrace science, not be bored, or worse, think of it as

Paperless Classroom - Schloss Neubeuern (Germany)

The students and teachers of Schloss Neubeuern use OneNote and other Microsoft products to collaborate with other students, not only in their own school, but...

Project Kakuma: Educating refugees via Skype

Our guest blogger today is Koen Timmers, a Microsoft Expert Educator Fellow from Belgium who is currently teaming up with teachers across the globe to help educate African refugees through an organization known as Project Kakuma. With the help of Skype they teach students in the Kakuma Refugee Camp in Kenya. In April 2015 a dozen global…

Close multiple windows at once

Minimize all the windows all at once:There's a keyboard shortcut that you can use to minimize all the windows on your desktop all at once: Hold the Window's Key down and press the letter "M":

daily edventures | Paula Vorne: E2 in Budapest Through the Eyes of a Fellow

The Fellow’s role in this year’s E2 event was everything I could have hoped for and more. Our first, and in my opinion the most important role, was to support the teacher groups in their process of creating new, inspiring, and innovative hacks for the classroom. It’s not easy to start working in a group where there are teachers from different countries and cultures with whom you don’t necessarily share a mutual language. Still, as I walked to the room where the teacher groups worked for the first time, I saw no hesitation or prejudice. Instead, I saw enthusiasm, excitement, and a will to succeed.

#Hack the Classroom, Microsoft E2@Budapest

Kam pong says: 'I composed a song 'Hack the Classroom'. I am participating in Microsoft’s 2nd annual E² - Educator Exchange in Budapest, Hungary on March 8-10, 2016. This ex...

SchoolNet SA - IT's a Great Idea: Why not explore Microsoft Math this Easter break?

Grade 10-12 Mathematics can become the most popular subject at school with the right tools for learning! One of those tools that is free and engaging is Microsoft Math. Microsoft Math is a free, online, 24-hour high school learning support service for Grade 10-12 Maths students in South Africa and globally, provided by Microsoft. What is more, it is available on any device at any time of day or night. You'll find it at