Nutrition information

chicken vs eggsGoogle is trying to improve how it provides us with useful and quality nutrition information . The results are instant and so if you are trying to find out about food or make informed food choices then the option is there to use Google to get a quick answer and then follow it up in your own time and way. It’s not perfect. The more we use it and the more Google can establish what we are trying to do and find out ,the better Google will become. In the search bar you type, for instance :

beef vs chicken or chicken vs eggs

 

chicken vs potatoAt the moment Google needs basic input . It can’t do chicken vs barramundi. If you type something like chicken vs potato you will get 129 million results and they will be about the nutritional information with regard to each food and you will have to make the comparison yourself. If you type something like tomato vs cucumber it will bring up the sites which compare these two foods and then other nutritional sites to do with each. The results are not consistent as yet for each comparison you do and a search engine like Google relies on people input patterns to improve its performance. One day it will dazzle us with its comparisons but right now , it’s still pretty impressive and helpful.

#YearInSearch

I love Google. I know there are other search engines and I use them too but I often wonder how I lived without Google. If I want to know I google. I can google in class, my students can Google in class and we can get instant answers to our questions. With more complicated issues we use a range of search engines. Google Australia served us well this year and they have made this short video to show us what we looked for in our searches. Students often enjoy telling and showing me what the new Google site banner is because some of them are very inventive.

Use You Tube as a search engine

YouTube infographicIf YouTube were a country it would be the third largest in the world after India and China. It has a billion unique visitors a month and that probably explains why your YouTube clips are taking longer to upload. YouTube has to grow into its new self as second largest search engine on the planet. Some don’t think of using YouTube as a search engine. If I am looking for information I will look it up on Google and then YouTube. Doesn’t matter whether it’s information for my classroom or something to do with dog diseases and conditions. It could be recipes or a query about the benefits of magnesium. If I can’t do something I look it up on YouTube. I use YouTube all the time. It brings me knowledge, information, help and insight. It is often easier to look at a video clip of how to repair something than read pages of instructions. I am ever grateful to the thousands of people who make a video about how they solved a problem or the professionals who bring me information about knee exercises, the benefits of rebounding or how to draw a coffee cup. The infographic comes from mushroomwork networks and you can see a large copy of it on their site.

Have you used Google Scholar?

expertvillage has prepared this little clip so you know how to find and use Google Scholar. What it does is search in journals, periodicals, academic resources to bring different and more particular information than if you were to use just Google. It will also teach students to broaden their searches and not just race each other to Wikipedia. I always try to move students to other search avenues so Google Scholar works because they  love Google as much as they love Wikipedia. Google Scholar can also provide legal information. If students use both Google, Google Scholar and other search engines you recommend, then your chances of seeing and hearing the same thing 20 times is minimised. I encourage wider research for my own sanity as much as anything.

Best search engines for your students

search engine

Pick the right search engine

The graphic left is a smaller version of the great graphic you will find on Educational and Mobile Technology. Not all search engines are the same. Not all search engines bring the best results. You need to search for what you need with the best search engine. You can download the chart from Educational and Mobile Technology and pin it in your classroom or share the link with your students. It helps them to select the best search engine for their purposes. Acquiring good information in a society swamped with information is a skill which has to be taught and learnt. Before , we all went to Britannica and Colliers. Can you remember the people you used to be in awe of because they knew so much from encyclopedia Britannica? There isn’t the same awe attached to anyone who knows search engines well. We are now in awe of someone who can be a grand success on YouTube.

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