TeachersFirst Ready to Go

TeachersFirst’s ready-to-go, projectable classroom activities are designed for either whole class or student-centered use. The range of subjects and grades is broad, spanning from poetry and literary devices to important historic events. All these activities were created by experienced teachers, and many have been used extensively in the teachers’ own classrooms before sharing them on TeachersFirst.

Offer these activities on an interactive whiteboard or projector, on student laptops, or even as a computer center. Be sure to share the links with students so they can access them from home or during study times for self-directed learning, review, or enrichment. Don’t forget to use your free TeachersFirst membership to mark ready to go Favorites or share comments about classroom successes with these activities.

 

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Frontier Forts of the American Revolution - TeachersFirst

Grades
4 to 8
7 Favorites 0  Comments
Here's a highly visual look at life on the frontier during the American Revolution, created with the help of several groups of reenactors. The unit includes information on the life...more
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Here's a highly visual look at life on the frontier during the American Revolution, created with the help of several groups of reenactors. The unit includes information on the life of children in this setting.

tag(s): american revolution (65), colonial america (103), evolution (100)

In the Classroom

Use this unit as part of a study of colonial America, or to show what daily life was like in the 18th century. Be sure to explore the Teacher area for specific writing ideas and more. Extend the lesson by having student groups map their own virtual "frontier fort" using an online drawing tool such as Scribblar reviewed here.

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TeachersFirst Brain Twister - TeachersFirst

Grades
3 to 9
21 Favorites 0  Comments
These ten question quizzes, written by Thinking Teachers, change each Friday and are ready to go with one edition for middle school students and one for elementary students. The quiz...more
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These ten question quizzes, written by Thinking Teachers, change each Friday and are ready to go with one edition for middle school students and one for elementary students. The quiz presents ten questions, one at a time. You have only ONE try to pick the correct answer, so think carefully. You get points for each correct answer, totaling up to a possible 100. When you finish, you see your score and how long you spent. Questions are intended to stretch your thinking. Printable versions are available along with answers to the previous week's Twister. A new version of the Twister is mobile-friendly and adjusts to any screen size. Take the Twister with you wherever you go!

In the Classroom

Since elementary and middle school curriculum content varies from location to location, it is unlikely that every question will fall within the scope of your school's curriculum. High point questions may fall outside standard classroom fare. Five point questions tend to be at the knowledge/comprehension/application level of Bloom's taxonomy and closer to "normal" content. Ten pointers are more likely cross-curricular application/analysis, and twenty pointers require analytical thinking and a wider experience level, such as knowledge of current events or information beyond normal curricula. Twenty pointers may require more than one student's input.

Do the questions as a whole-class activity on a multimedia projector or interactive whiteboard with students contributing the portions of knowledge they do know toward solving the question. Using teamwork and thinking aloud can often help the group reach a conclusion that no single member could do on his/her own. They can each test different math answers to see which one is correct. This process will not only foster thinking aloud and group communication, but also model test-taking skills for multiple choice.

Alternatively, do the Twister in small groups, with one student an answer entry but others as researchers on neighboring computers to find out what the group does not know. It may be helpful to assign roles: moderator (assigns what to find out and helps the group reach consensus), keyboarder (enters responses, may conduct research in a new window), or researchers (find information as assigned). Use the Twisters to model ad teach information literacy skills in a high-motivation activity. Or offer the Twisters as an enrichment challenge or extra credit option for students to do at home. Ask parents to be on the honor system to sign a note indicating the score their child achieved. Since parents may be overly interested in helping, you may want to simply give extra credit for anyone completing the quiz, no matter the score. Be sure to mark this ready to go exclusive in your favorites and share it on your teacher class web page.

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Globetracker's Mission - TeachersFirst

Grades
2 to 6
18 Favorites 0  Comments
  
Globetracker's Mission is a projector- or whiteboard-ready episodic story in blog-style format, taking students in grades 2-6 on a journey as they learn standards-based geography, landforms,...more
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Globetracker's Mission is a projector- or whiteboard-ready episodic story in blog-style format, taking students in grades 2-6 on a journey as they learn standards-based geography, landforms, and map skills in an engaging, interactive context. Each weekly "post" from Geo and Meri, fictitious brother and sister techno-savvy teens, traces steps on a secret mission for their Uncle Globetracker and his important but unnamed government agency. Episodes include annotated vocabulary terms, interactive maps to practice map skills, and think-aloud questions the teens pose as they use today's tools: text messaging, cell phones, and blog-posting. Readers vote at the conclusion of each post, telling Geo and Meri what to do next. TeachersFirst member teachers have other options for their classes to become involved in the mission. All episodes have accompanying Google Earth, placemarker files so your class can "tour" with Geo and Meri using Google Earth's free, downloadable software. Complete tech tips, detailed lesson and management ideas, and teacher information are included.

tag(s): continents (41), directions (18), earth (212), landforms (40), latitude (13), longitude (13), map skills (68), maps (234), oceans (124)

In the Classroom

See "Lesson Ideas" from the Teacher Edition page for a complete list of ways to use this creative unit with younger students, on laptops with student partners, or as semi-independent work. Be sure to share the link on your teacher web page for students to share at home (or check on the next episode, if they can't wait!).

Encourage parents to join the fun on the mission by sharing the suggestions listed under "Parent Info."

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The 50 States - TeachersFirst

Grades
4 to 8
8 Favorites 0  Comments
TeachersFirst's states project for students combines the usual "almanac" facts with narratives on native people, early history, economy, and landforms and geography. The result is a...more
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TeachersFirst's states project for students combines the usual "almanac" facts with narratives on native people, early history, economy, and landforms and geography. The result is a one-stop site for upper elementary and middle school students studying their own states, or someone else's. This project is more than "halfway" complete, and we are adding new states regularly.

tag(s): california (25), new york (24), states (157), texas (4)

In the Classroom

Use this site on a projector or interactive whiteboard to discuss and informally assess prior knowledge as you start your study of the 50 states. One easy use would be for testing students on knowledge of the capitols. Open the site on the interactive whiteboard or projector, and you can test students not only by state recognition on the map but with what the capitols are. State location and capitol information are not clearly stated until clicked on, so this would be a fairly easy formative assessment in review the information.

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Biomes of the World - TeachersFirst

Grades
4 to 8
26 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Introduce the earth's different biomes with this unit, created by TeachersFirst. Biomes include coniferous forest, deciduous forest, tropical rainforest, tundra, ocean, fresh...more
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Introduce the earth's different biomes with this unit, created by TeachersFirst. Biomes include coniferous forest, deciduous forest, tropical rainforest, tundra, ocean, fresh water, desert, and the savannah. Each link includes information and pictures. Students can complete an on-line research project on a biome of their choice, using selected web resources, or they can learn the basics of biomes with the information provided in the unit. There are links to the introduction, to learn more about the project, and even a teachers link (with a TON of class activity ideas). This site does require Adobe Acrobat. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): biomes (117), earth (212), earth day (103), ecosystems (76)

In the Classroom

Have students work in cooperative learning groups to explore this site. Challenge students to create multimedia presentations about the biomes. How about a Powerpoint? Or have students narrate a photo of the biome using a site such as Narrable (reviewed here). Other options include creating a wiki, blog, or video.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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The Interactive Raven - TeachersFirst

Grades
6 to 12
19 Favorites 0  Comments
Here's TeachersFirst's famous on-line presentation of Poe's classic poem, with notations explaining definitions and literary devices. Roll over words for definitions, literary devices,...more
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Here's TeachersFirst's famous on-line presentation of Poe's classic poem, with notations explaining definitions and literary devices. Roll over words for definitions, literary devices, and more.

tag(s): halloween (39), poetry (210)

In the Classroom

This is a great on-line independent study for students who need additional help with either vocabulary or poetic devices. Introduce the site on your projector (rollovers will not work on an interactive whiteboard), then have students work alone or with a partner to become acquainted with the full text of Poe's masterpiece, accessing definitions and literary devices on their own. Challenge students to create their own dramatic readings of the poem using a tool such as Podomatic, (reviewed here,)or accompany their reading with illustrations using Narrable, single.cfm?id=14420">reviewed here).
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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TeachersFirst: The Highwayman - TeachersFirst

Grades
7 to 12
20 Favorites 0  Comments
This online edition of Alfred Noyes' poem introduces both the text and the poetic devices and vocabulary in this famous poem. The unit can serve as an independent study tool ...more
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This online edition of Alfred Noyes' poem introduces both the text and the poetic devices and vocabulary in this famous poem. The unit can serve as an independent study tool or a review for those who need a refresher on poetic devices.

tag(s): poetry (210)

In the Classroom

Share the start of the poem on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Then turn students or partners loose to explore the poem and discover the details on laptops or at home. Extend the unit by challenging groups or individual students to create their own visual interpretations of a stanza using a tool such as GlogsterEDU reviewed here.

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TeachersFirst Middle East Interactive Activities - TeachersFirst

Grades
6 to 12
4 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Understanding the nuances of the Middle East is a challenge for anyone. TeachersFirst offers these interactive activities to help students grasp the basic political geography and religious...more
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Understanding the nuances of the Middle East is a challenge for anyone. TeachersFirst offers these interactive activities to help students grasp the basic political geography and religious make-up of the region. The activities include some basic facts to acquaint students with historical events, resentments, and alliances in the region. With this foundation, you can move on to meaningful discussions of the many interrelationships in the Middle East and their impact on the world today.

tag(s): arab (18), iran (10), iraq (31), israel (14), middle east (22)

In the Classroom

These interactive activities are well-suited for both individual student use and interactive whiteboards. There is a link at the bottom of the page to different lesson plan ideas to use these activities in the classroom for varying purposes. Be sure to include the link on your teacher web page if you are asking students to learn all the country names. They will be able to use the activities to practice at home or in study halls.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Activities: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - TeachersFirst

Grades
4 to 8
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TeachersFirst offers a chapter-by-chapter set of activities for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Designed to be used after each chapter, the activities include science searches,...more
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TeachersFirst offers a chapter-by-chapter set of activities for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Designed to be used after each chapter, the activities include science searches, writing, and art projects suitable for individual or group use. The ideas and activities ask you to respond, extend, discuss, create, and more. There is simply no better way to try new "After Reading" strategies. Don't miss this great collection as a way to encourage anyone to get the most from reading and re-reading a new favorite. Find links to two other sets of Harry Potter book activities on the Intro page.

tag(s): harry potter (11)

In the Classroom

Share this link on your teacher web page or in a parent newsletter, if you don't have time to do all the activities at school. Ask students to design their own activities to accompany other Harry Potter books.

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Dates That Matter - TeachersFirst

Grades
5 to 12
7 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Dates That Matter provides a new perspective on history by placing each day-in-history event in broader context and explaining its long-term impact. History is a fabric woven of many...more
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Dates That Matter provides a new perspective on history by placing each day-in-history event in broader context and explaining its long-term impact. History is a fabric woven of many events, and Dates That Matter helps students see the full tapestry. The dates display on a projector-ready screen: A single sentence reveals something about the date. You then click to see a sequence of thought-provoking questions to guide students to a greater understanding of interrelationships as they try to guess the actual event. When the historical event finally shows on screen, a further explanation, Why does it matter?, fills in the remaining context and offers reviewed links to learn more. Teachers who work with low readers might try using these daily clues to teach the reading strategy of connecting what you read with prior knowledge to place new learning in context. A full, annotated version of each dte is availabel from the Teacher page at the end so you can plan for student responses and have hints for guiding the discussion. You can also preview upcoming dates to choose those you may want to put in your weekly plans.

tag(s): substitutes (19)

In the Classroom

Begin your social studies class once or twice a week by sharing a Date That Matters on a projector or interactive whiteboard to foster broader understanding of the connections that form world history. Or use the links at the end as an extra credit or enrichment opportunity or for gifted students to investigate more. Focus class attention as everyone enters by projecting the date and starting sentence. Make this one a link on your teacher web page for students (and parents)to access outside of school. Substitutes will also appreciate this meaningful and engaging way to connect today with students' prior history knowledge for more than isolated factoid. It's a lesson ready to go!
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Activities: Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix - TeachersFirst

Grades
4 to 8
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TeachersFirst offers a chapter-by-chapter set of activities for Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix . Designed to be used after each chapter, the activities include science...more
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TeachersFirst offers a chapter-by-chapter set of activities for Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix . Designed to be used after each chapter, the activities include science searches, writing, and art projects suitable for individual or group use. The ideas and activities ask you to respond, extend, discuss, create, and more. There is simply no better way to try new "After Reading" strategies. Don't miss this great collection as a way to encourage anyone to get the most from reading and re-reading a new favorite. Find links to activities for two other Harry Potter books on the Intro page.

tag(s): harry potter (11)

In the Classroom

Share the link on your teacher web page or in a parent newsletter, if you don't have time to do all the activities at school. Challenge students to design similar activities to accompany other Harry Potter (or other favorite) books.

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Activities: Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince - TeachersFirst

Grades
4 to 8
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TeachersFirst offers a set of chapter-by-chapter response activities for Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince. Use art, writing, and web research to answer questions or think...more
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TeachersFirst offers a set of chapter-by-chapter response activities for Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince. Use art, writing, and web research to answer questions or think about the issues in a particular chapter. Ideal for individual use, and many of these could serve as the basis for a group discussion on topics like loyalty and leadership. The ideas and activities ask you to respond, extend, discuss, create, and more. There is simply no better way to try new "After Reading strategies. Don't miss this great collection as a way to encourage anyone to get the most from reading and re-reading a new favorite. Find links to two other sets of Harry Potter book activities on the Intro page.

tag(s): harry potter (11)

In the Classroom

Share the link on your teacher web page or in a parent newsletter, if you don't have time to do all the activities at school. Ask students to design similar activities to accompany other Harry Potter (or other favorite) books.

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