"Dune's Island" - A Free Video Learning Series for Your Classrooms

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Eric Matyas, Oct 30, 2019.

  1. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Oct 30, 2019

    Hi everyone, with so many students now having to be taught remotely, here's a free resource that I hope is helpful. In an effort to try to help bridge the gap between children and the environment, I've created an video learning series that aims to teach kids stewardship and coastal science concepts in a fun and engaging way through stories and characters. The series was made in partnership with the Marine Science Center in Volusia County, Florida. There are five episodes so far as well as four support documentaries that are freely available to watch directly on Vimeo or from the website. You can even download them to watch offline if need be. There is also tie-in curriculum on the website created by a team of science teachers from Volusia County schools. We are currently developing new series and are always trying to improve so any and all feedback is welcome and very much appreciated. I sincerely hope that "Dune's Island" is a helpful resource for you and your students! :)

    https://www.dunesisland.org/

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2020
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  3. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    Oct 30, 2019

    Thank you, how do we find them on Vimeo?
     
  4. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Oct 30, 2019

    You're very welcome!

    Here’s our page where you can access all of the episodes. I think it looks pretty good for a community project! Please help us share it with the world. :)

    https://www.dunesisland.org/episodes
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2020
  5. vickilyn

    vickilyn Multitudinous

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    Oct 31, 2019

    If they are free, you might consider posting the Vimeo addresses for your series on the thread that is especially created for free teacher resources - https://forums.atozteacherstuff.com...t-pd-lesson-plans-and-resources-enjoy.190124/.

    It is a thread that is pinned, or continually saved, making it just right for sharing links such as this. You will find that it is generally found easily when you click on "Recent Posts", since people add to it frequently. You don't have to post your resource there, but the thread is well established, and people know what it is all about. Additionally, this thread may soon fall off of the Recent Posts radar if it doesn't remain active, but the Free Resources thread is posted to almost daily, meaning that the thread will not get lost due to inactivity. Let me thank you for posting free resources for the members here.
     
  6. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Oct 31, 2019

    Hi Vickilyn, you're very welcome...and thanks for the tip! I hope some of our films are helpful and inspire learning! :)
     
  7. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Nov 5, 2019

    Hi everyone, here's the second episode of my free video learning series, "Dune's Island." You can watch it on Vimeo or download it so you can share it with your students offline. Any and all feedback is welcome and very much appreciated. Enjoy! :)

     
  8. jaley

    jaley Guest

    Nov 5, 2019

    Thank you for the video series, that's wonderful!
    I was curious if you had any thoughts on how to best implement this series to get the best learning experience. What kinds of things could a class do before, during, or after watching in order to ensure they can use the information they've learned?
    Thank you!
     
  9. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Nov 6, 2019

    Hi Jaley, you're very welcome! When I created "Dune's Island", my intent was to make something that teachers could use as a springboard to create lessons. The school district in the county where "Dune's Island" was made did just that: they put together a team of educators and created their own custom curriculum to accompany the series. The curriculum is for grades K-5 and is based on Florida Science Standards. It covers vocabulary, math problems, the central message of each episode, writing prompts, and other things like poster problems (students create posters to address specific problems in the episodes,) comparing living/nonliving things, adaptations and all kinds of other activities. Feel free to email me and I'll be happy to share what they did...it might give you some ideas! :)
     
  10. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Nov 11, 2019

    Hi folks, here's the third episode of my free learning series, "Dune's Island." In this one, the kids learn about the diverse ecosystems of the island as they search for a lost treasure chest left by Dune's great grandfather, a naturalist. I've had positive feedback from teachers who like the mystery element of this episode. I'd love to hear your thoughts, too!

     
  11. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Nov 17, 2019

    This is the fourth episode of my free video learning series, "Dune's Island." Upon returning from a weekend kayak trip, Mouth discovers that her favorite tern, Vern, was released back into the wild. Heartbroken that she didn't get to say goodbye to her feathered friend, she and Dune embark into the world of shorebirds and attempt to spot Vern before he flies away with his flock. Enjoy and please share! :)

     
  12. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Nov 26, 2019

    Here's the fifth episode of my free learning series, "Dune's Island." Please feel free to share with colleagues!



    SYNOPSIS:

    Mouth discovers a discarded sandwich bag on the beach that suspiciously smells like one of Tiny's stinky sandwiches. Convinced that Tiny is the culprit, she sets out to catch him in the act of littering. Meanwhile, Jordi learns how deadly trash can be to marine life and how we can all help to protect the ocean and the animals that live in it.

    LEARNING CONCEPTS IN THIS EPISODE

    -The beach is divided into zones.
    -Different sized objects can be found in the various zones.
    -Coral identification.
    -Sea Bean identification.
    -Discarded plastic bags can kill sea turtles.
    -Discarded soda can rings can be lethal to marine animals.
    -Beach clean-up.
    -Trash that is thrown overboard from ships often finds its way back to shore.
    -Animals can get their heads stuck in cans.
    -Animals sometimes ingest plastics which can kill them.
    -Discarded fishing line kills birds and turtles when they ingest it.
    -Discarded fishing line kills birds and turtles when they get tangled in it.
    -Trash in the ocean can take years to decompose.
    -Tin cans in the ocean can take 50 years to decompose.
    -Plastic six-pack rings in the ocean can take 400 years to break down.
    -Fishing line in the ocean can take 600 years to break down.
    -The importance of disposing of trash properly.
     
  13. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Dec 11, 2019


    This is a support documentary for our free environmental learning series, “Dunes Island.”

    Get up close and personal with Bubba, a Great Horned Owl, who lives at the Marine Science Center. Mr. Binnacle talks with Laura, an educator at the Center, and learns:

    -Why Bubba is called a Great Horned Owl.
    -How his name is tied to science.
    -Why Bubba’s eyes are so big.
    -How far Bubba can actually turn his head.
    -How much he weighs.
    -Why his bones are hollow.
    -What Bubba eats.
    -How Bubba became a resident at the Marine Science Center.

    I hope your students enjoy meeting Bubba as much as we did!
     
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  14. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Dec 19, 2019



    Here's another support documentary for my free learning series, "Dune's Island."

    Meet Kris Kringle, a Florida box turtle who lives at the Marine science center. Dune talks with Shell Webster, the Director of Education, and learns all kinds of amazing thing about Kris and other turtles like:

    -Why Kris’s shell is a bit flattened.
    -The difference between turtles, sea turtles and tortoises.
    -Where turtles like Kris live in the wild.
    -Kris’s favorite foods.
    -Why turtles sometimes eat trash and why it’s so harmful.
    -How scientists can see inside turtles and other animals.
    -How long turtles live.
    -How Kris Kringle got his name.
    -How to help a turtle in distress.

    We really enjoyed meeting Kris Kringle...we hope you will as well!
     
  15. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Dec 25, 2019



    Happy Holidays everyone!

    Here's another support documentary for my free learning series, "Dune's Island."

    Meet Tobias, a non-venomous pine snake that lives at the Marine Science Center.

    Mouth talks with Shell, the Director of Education, and learns all kinds of amazing things about Tobias and other kinds of snakes, like:

    -Why Tobias’ scales feel rougher than other snakes.
    -Tobias’ diet.
    -How snakes like Tobias use their tongues to hunt.
    -Why Tobias sometimes mimics rattle snakes.
    -Why anacondas can live only in the water.
    -How long anacondas get.
    -Problems with invasive species of snakes.
    -Where invasive species come from.
    -How nonvenomous snakes sometimes mimic venomous ones.
    -What to do if you encounter a snake in the wild.

    Enjoy! :)
     
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  16. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Jan 2, 2020


    Here's a serious problem that a lot of people aren't aware of: microplastics.

    Scientists estimate that about 8 million metric tons of plastic enter the ocean each year.

    Mr. Binnacle talks with Shell Webster, the Education Coordinator at the Marine Science center about micro plastics, tiny pieces of plastic that measure less than 5mm in size.

    He learns that:

    -Toxins stick to these plastics and can be ingested by marine life.
    -Marine animals can starve as a result of ingesting micro plastics.
    -Harmful toxins ingested by fish and marine animals can be ingested by humans.
    -Micro plastics are sometimes contained in the form of micro beads in everyday products, like tooth paste and facial scrubs.
    -We can all help to prevent plastics from entering the oceans.

    I hope the video is helpful...please feel free to share it with your students.
     
  17. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Jan 11, 2020

    Here’s a link to all of the “Dune’s Island” episodes as well as the support documentaries. While the series was originally intended for grade 5, we’ve discovered that teachers for grades K-4 are using the films as well which is wonderful. If you happen to use them, please let me know…I’d love to hear about it! And please feel free to share the films with anyone who might find them helpful! :) https://vimeo.com/showcase/6574338
     
  18. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Jan 22, 2020


    In an effort to try to help bridge the gap between children and the environment, I've created an video learning series that aims to teach kids stewardship and coastal science concepts in a fun and engaging way through stories and characters. The series was made in partnership with the Marine Science Center in Volusia County, Florida. There are five episodes so far as well as four support documentaries that are freely available to watch on Vimeo. You can also download them to watch offline if need be. We are currently developing new series and are always trying to improve so any and all feedback is welcome and very much appreciated. I sincerely hope that some of our films are helpful!
     
  19. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Feb 5, 2020

    We’re trying to share the series with the world, but it’s a huge challenge since it’s a community project and we don’t have an advertising budget. Please feel free to share it with colleagues, social media groups…or anyone who might find it helpful. Thanks! https://vimeo.com/showcase/6574338
     
  20. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Feb 11, 2020



    Here's the second episode of my free video learning series, "Dune's Island." You can watch it on Vimeo or download it so you can share it with your students offline.

    We’re trying to share the series with the world, but it’s a huge challenge since it’s a community project and we don’t have an advertising budget. Please feel free to share it with colleagues, social media groups…or anyone who might find it helpful. Thanks!
     
  21. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Feb 19, 2020



    Hi folks, here's the third episode of my free learning series, "Dune's Island." In this one, the kids learn about the diverse ecosystems of the island as they search for a lost treasure chest left by Dune's great grandfather, a naturalist. I've had positive feedback from teachers who like the mystery element of this episode.

    We’re trying to share the series with the world, but it’s a huge challenge since it’s a community project and we don’t have an advertising budget. Please feel free to share it with colleagues, social media groups…or anyone who might find it helpful. Thanks! https://vimeo.com/showcase/6574338
     
  22. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Feb 28, 2020


    Here's the 4th “Dune’s Island” episode, “Vern the Tern.” Upon returning from a weekend kayak trip, Mouth discovers that her favorite tern, Vern, was released back into the wild. Heartbroken that she didn't get to say goodbye to her feathered friend, she and Dune embark into the world of shorebirds and attempt to spot Vern before he flies away with his flock. You can watch / download the film from Vimeo to share with your kiddos. Learning concepts are listed in the description on Vimeo as well.

    We’re trying to share the series with the world, but it’s a huge challenge since it’s a community project and we don’t have an advertising budget. Please feel free to share it with colleagues, social media groups…or anyone who might find it helpful. Thanks! https://vimeo.com/showcase/6574338
     
  23. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Mar 15, 2020

  24. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Mar 24, 2020

    The "Dune's Island" website now has its very own web address. Here it is:
    https://www.dunesisland.org/
    The site contains all of the episodes and support documentaries as well as tie-in curriculum written by a team of teachers from Volusia County, Florida (where the series was made.) I sincerely hope it's a helpful resource for you and your students! :)
     
  25. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Mar 30, 2020

    Hi folks, I hope everyone is safe and healthy. My "Dune's Island" series is already receiving wonderful feedback from teachers and parents. Here's what they are saying:

    https://www.dunesisland.org/praise

    I sincerely hope it's helpful....especially with the kiddos all stuck at home.
     
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2020
  26. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Apr 24, 2020

  27. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Apr 27, 2020

    I had always intended "Dune's Island" to be an immersive learning world. The idea was to produce films that teachers and home educators could actually pull lessons from to share with their students. After completing the episodes, a team of science teachers went through the films and created curriculum for grades K-5 that ties into the episodes. Here's a link to it: https://www.dunesisland.org/curriculum Please feel free to share it! :)
    [​IMG]
     
  28. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    May 5, 2020

    Here's the curriculum for "Dune's Island," created by a team of dedicated elementary science teachers. We hope some of it is helpful in your classrooms! :)
    [​IMG]
    https://www.dunesisland.org/curriculum
     
  29. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    May 13, 2020

    I've been getting some very positive feedback about "Dune's Island" from parents and teachers so I included a "Praise for Dune's Island" page on the site.

    Given the current environmental situation, I believe that this is a very important project. Getting the word out about it is a massive challenge, though...especially since it has no advertising budget. If you think "Dune's Island" might be helpful to someone you know, please share it with them. Thanks in advance!
    https://www.dunesisland.org/
    [​IMG]
     
  30. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Aug 13, 2020

    Hi everyone, I haven't been able to post in a while as I had to switch to online teaching (which I had never done) so I've been busy going through training. I hope everyone is safe and healthy. With so many students having to be taught remotely now, I sincerely hope that "Dune's Island" is a helpful resource. Any and all feedback is very welcome and much appreciated. :)

    https://www.dunesisland.org/
     
    vickilyn likes this.
  31. vickilyn

    vickilyn Multitudinous

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    Aug 13, 2020

    Eric,

    One science teacher to an obviously talented group of science teachers, let me tell you that I have spent quite a bit of time with the resource this summer. I love everything about it and believe that it is a genuine treasure. Please accept my sincere thanks for this labor of love - I didn't have any part to play in the creation, but I recognize the talent and thought that has gone into this creation. Because I monitor the Free Links and Resources thread on this forum, please know that I will be mindful to keep the link updated and moved forward whenever more is added to it, or modifications are made. I will, likewise, share my praise with other teachers in districts around me. Should you decide to market this resource now or in the future, please make that known so that I can share that information with others who may wish to have their own personal hard copy - I kind of like owning a hard copy since I can always lay my hands on it, loan it to a friend, or leave it for a sub to use without worrying about online connections.

    Congratulations on a job well done. I would be interested in seeing new episodes and episodes that have even more in depth lessons attached, but I'm one of those individuals who just loves to see lessons like these evolve and grow, very much the way we hope our student's minds and grasp of concepts evolve over time.

    :celebrate::celebrate: A JOB WELL DONE! :hugs:
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2020
  32. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Aug 14, 2020

    Thank you so much, Vickilyn...and yes, we're trying to share it with the world as a free resource (with no budget to promote it) so anything you can do to help us would be amazing. Please do share it with other teachers and districts and encourage them to do the same! I purposely enabled the download feature on Vimeo so teachers and parents can have the videos on their computers to use anytime without having to be online. :)
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2020
  33. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Aug 23, 2020

    Here's a short clip from one of the episodes: “Pelican Problems.” All of the episodes (and documentaries) are free to watch and download to your computers so you don’t have to be online to use them. You’ll find them on my site: https://www.dunesisland.org/

     
  34. vickilyn

    vickilyn Multitudinous

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    Aug 23, 2020

    Thank you, Eric!
     
  35. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Aug 24, 2020

    Hi Vickilyn, you're very welcome! We're planning to make more films after the health crisis is over. We're also beginning to reach out to educators to find out the topics that tend to give them trouble in classrooms so that perhaps we can address them through our films. Any input from the community would be great. Thanks! :)
     
  36. Eric Matyas

    Eric Matyas Rookie

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    Jun 1, 2021

    Hi everyone, I just wanted to let you know that you and your students can watch "Dune's Island" on Youtube if you wish. The documentaries are there as well. Here's the link:

    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCL9XtKhyrbHJie5vugipK8w

    My learning films are completely ad-free so you'll never experience interrupted viewing. Since the project is a donation-driven community-based one, please consider making a small contribution here if you feel that it's valuable:

    https://www.dunesisland.org/

    And please share it with colleagues and parents! :)
     

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