TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of Apr 7, 2013

Here are this week's features. Clicking the tags in the description area of each listing will present a list of other resources with this topic. | Click here to return to the Featured Sites Archive

 

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Lore - Lore.com

Grades
6 to 12
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Lore is created for instructors to design their own MOOC type courses without needing adoption by a whole school or district. Most importantly, creating a course is unbelievably SIMPLE....more
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Lore is created for instructors to design their own MOOC type courses without needing adoption by a whole school or district. Most importantly, creating a course is unbelievably SIMPLE. Not sure what a MOOC is? A Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) is (usually free), open course offered by a teacher or university for anyone willing to learn. It is a student and community centered place for learning developed by university students. In Lore, teachers control who is in the network through use of a class membership code. Course materials, tests, and grades can be added and managed through Lore. Teachers can contact students and decide what to make public or private. Students are able to interact with and learn from each other. Learning becomes more interactive and extends beyond the classroom. Lore also features a discussion area, calendar, library, and gradebook. Each student and teacher have profiles which others can follow. Teachers and students can create academic groups for learning. Teachers can create a group with other teachers to develop a PLN.

Not sure where to begin or not ready to start on your own? Use elements of ready-made courses at Lore to experiment and enrich your curriculum. Search through the popular courses to look at what other teachers and professors are offering.

tag(s): classroom management (129), social networking (112)

In the Classroom

Create your course and offer it to your students for greater interaction and learning through community building. Find great ideas from other existing courses. Teachers of gifted can use courses to challenge students in their areas of interest. You can also have gifted students create or collaborate on a student-made "course." Explore the topics yourself for some new, engaging topics to round out your own expertise. Allow students to enroll in a course that would fit into their career goals as an exploratory opportunity in that field.

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Chart Jungle - Wendy Shepherd

Grades
K to 4
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Find and print many useful charts at Chart Jungle. Topics include story starters, homework charts, reading logs, and more. Chart Jungle also includes alphabet and number flash cards...more
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Find and print many useful charts at Chart Jungle. Topics include story starters, homework charts, reading logs, and more. Chart Jungle also includes alphabet and number flash cards to print and use. Other interesting printables include the digestive system, clocks, and skeletons. Choose any chart to print directly from your computer. Although this site does include a lot of advertisements, there are many timesavers and treasures.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): charts and graphs (195), classroom management (129), flash cards (45), handwriting (18), homework (43), organizational skills (120), presidents (129), printables (37), time (144)

In the Classroom

Use Chart Jungle as a resource for charts for use throughout the school year. Familiarize yourself with this site at the beginning of the school year. Use the reading chart for students to record the minutes spent reading at home. Use the homework charts to help your students stay organized. Share the flash cards link with parents to use at home.

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Open Street Map - OpenStreetMap

Grades
6 to 12
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This open source, collaborative mapping site is known as the "Wikipedia of maps." This easily editable map is up to date as locations change (as they often do). The license ...more
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This open source, collaborative mapping site is known as the "Wikipedia of maps." This easily editable map is up to date as locations change (as they often do). The license just requires you to credit OpenStreetMap, and you can copy, download, and amend the maps without limitation.

tag(s): map skills (80), maps (287)

In the Classroom

Use any part of this map for your school projects. Share the maps on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Copy, download, or alter maps as needed. The license requires crediting OpenStreetMap. Build completely new maps around a specific theme or concept, such as walking, hiking, bicycling, routes for those with disabilities, among others. Create projects traveling through various areas around various themes such as places to eat, sleep, or play. Students create stories about stopping in these places to share with others. If you teach geography, this one's a must. It is also helpful for showing students WHERE a story or news event takes place. If you teach map skills or teach about how communities grow, be sure to share this map to show how maps can change when a new street or highway is built. If you have a new road in your area, show the difference between this map and older ones that can be found online. Challenge students to compare this map to others.
 

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Brain Genie - CK12 Foundation

Grades
1 to 12
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This STEM Initiative provides easy to understand and detailed videos about Math and Science concepts for grades 1-12. Choose from the categories: 1-8 Math, Algebra I, Chemistry, 6-8...more
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This STEM Initiative provides easy to understand and detailed videos about Math and Science concepts for grades 1-12. Choose from the categories: 1-8 Math, Algebra I, Chemistry, 6-8 Math, Precalculus, and more. Click to a specific topic within the category. View the video lesson and answer questions about material learned. If you miss a question, a pop up explains the topic again. You are directed to try to answer the questions again. Choose to review the topic again or move on to the next lesson. Practice and learn without registering or register to earn badges to show your progress through the topics.

tag(s): angles (86), area (65), cells (102), decimals (133), ecology (135), equations (155), evolution (100), fractions (239), game based learning (101), genetics (90), logic (229), molecules (43), money (192), operations (126), patterns (84), percent (82), perimeter (32), photosynthesis (33), place value (56), probability (130), problem solving (258), ratios (52), respiration (17), sequencing (31), STEM (123), volume (46)

In the Classroom

Find great ideas for using this tool in the classroom with this video. Be sure to include this link with your resources for students to find alternate explanations to topics for better understanding. Assign various topics as a review in addition to lecture and other classroom activities. Assign a specific topic (not already learned in class) for cooperative groups to view. Have students create a word cloud of the important terms they learn from this site/activity using a tool such as Wordle (reviewed here), Tagxedo (reviewed here), or WordItOut (reviewed here).

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Money As You Grow - President's Advisory Council on Financial Capability

Grades
K to 12
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Money as You Grow provides 20 essential, age-appropriate financial lessons--with corresponding activities--that kids need to know as they grow. Divided into 5 different age categories,...more
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Money as You Grow provides 20 essential, age-appropriate financial lessons--with corresponding activities--that kids need to know as they grow. Divided into 5 different age categories, lessons are grouped according to different age requirements. Click on an age group: ages 3-5, ages 6-10, ages 11-13, ages 14-18, ages 18+. Once you choose an age group, click on the link to view activities appropriate for that particular age. Download and print the free poster listing each of the 20 items in three different sizes through the link provided at the bottom of the page.

tag(s): financial literacy (78), money (192), preK (275)

In the Classroom

View suggestions offered on the site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Share this information with parents to explore at home together. Try one of the suggested activities for math lessons in your classroom. For example: 6-10 year olds should begin learning how to shop and compare. Bring in local newspapers for students to compare prices on advertised items. Whatever age level you teach, explore the activities for that level. Assign cooperative learning groups to explore one of the specific lessons/activities. Ask middle school groups to "teach" a class based on one of the lessons. Challenge middle and high school groups to share what they learned by creating a simple infographic using Easel.ly, reviewed here or Venngage reviewed here.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Carnegie Cyber Academy - Carnegie Mellon University

Grades
3 to 8
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Teach your students about cybersafety using engaging interactives, resources for both parents and teachers, video "shorts," and much more! Training Missions includes Email (Spam), Communication...more
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Teach your students about cybersafety using engaging interactives, resources for both parents and teachers, video "shorts," and much more! Training Missions includes Email (Spam), Communication (Personal Information, Website Dangers, and Cyber bullying. There is also an area called "Fun Stuff." While the activities may be "fun," but are also highly educational. Learn about topics such as: saving the planet/environment, online safety, researching candidates and making an informed choice, testing your netiquette, growing a positive online reputation, plus many other activities (such as seasonal interactives.) Register a group or classroom using a group code. Download and install the activity according to instructions. In addition to the games, download teacher's companions that include classroom activities to accompany each of the activities.

tag(s): cyberbullying (42), digital citizenship (58), internet safety (109)

In the Classroom

Create a class account and allow students to explore the site and use the interactives throughout the year. Create a link to games or videos for students to access at home. Challenge students to create a talking avatar using a photo or other image (legally permitted to be reproduced). The avatars can be used to explain one important step in cyber safety. Use a site such as Blabberize (reviewed here). Share this site with parents as an excellent resource to use at home. Why not have a cybersafety month throughout your school -- maybe early in the school year-- and encourage all parents to join in as part of a PTA/PTO event?
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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From Cave Paintings to the Internet - Jeremy Norman and Co., Inc.

Grades
9 to 12
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This amazing online project documents the history of information and media. The project covers a huge scope of time, starting with entries from 2,500,000 BC up to the present time....more
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This amazing online project documents the history of information and media. The project covers a huge scope of time, starting with entries from 2,500,000 BC up to the present time. Use the Google Maps based interface (Map View) to explore the records geographically. Select from a large number of themes including archaeology, writing, or paleontology. You can also explore this tool by historical era or regions. Search the tool using the tabs Outline View, Expanded View, or Map View. Explore the Narrative and Analysis tab for valuable information.

tag(s): 1600s (11), 1700s (23), 1800s (44), 1900s (33), animals (277), art history (69), caves (5), genealogy (7), genetics (90), geologic time (9), geology (81), maps (287), sculpture (21)

In the Classroom

Use this tool to research the history of writing, communication, and technology through the ages. Connect each of these discoveries with other events including political, religious, or social changes also occurring at the time. Assign cooperative learning groups different areas of this website to explore. Challenge students to use a mapping tool such as Mapskip (reviewed here) to create a map of their own (with audio stories and pictures included)!

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Women in World History - Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media

Grades
10 to 12
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Women in World History offers sophisticated, high-level learning opportunities for exploration and research into the role of women throughout the world. Choose website reviews to find...more
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Women in World History offers sophisticated, high-level learning opportunities for exploration and research into the role of women throughout the world. Choose website reviews to find scholarly reviews of online archives and resources. View more than 200 primary sources with essays analyzing gender. View case studies from teachers discussing primary sources. Classroom modules offer lesson plans for several topics: the British Empire, Western Views of Chinese Women, and the Soviet Dictatorship. The lesson plans include everything you need: ways to differentiate the lesson, objectives, materials, time needed, and additional strategies.

tag(s): 1600s (11), 1700s (23), 1800s (44), 1900s (33), 20th century (50), africa (181), asia (73), central america (13), europe (74), great britain (16), north america (20), russia (39), south america (39), women (101)

In the Classroom

Use modules from this site to supplement current teaching materials. If you are teaching about primary sources, be sure to share that part of this website. Students can search by region: Africa, The Americas, East Asia, Europe, Mid-East/North Africa, Russia, South Asia, or Southeast Asia. Information on this site is written at a very high level. Use this with gifted and AP students as a source for research information or extended lessons in current content.

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European Virtual Museum - Leonardo da Vinci Programme

Grades
6 to 12
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Explore and view archives from seven museums in Europe from the comfort of your computer screen! Choose a specific time period, country, or object group to view artifacts. Links to...more
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Explore and view archives from seven museums in Europe from the comfort of your computer screen! Choose a specific time period, country, or object group to view artifacts. Links to artifacts include an image along with its name, type, country, chronology, time period, and museum location where it is housed. Click on the image thumbnail for a 3D image and links to more in-depth information. Find main characteristics, discovery information, state of the object, and deepenings (a short analysis and description).

tag(s): art history (69), europe (74), germany (28), italy (17), rome (26)

In the Classroom

View this site together on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) to see artifacts from 40,000 BC through 0 BC. Share this site in art class as a resource for different art and artifacts from early times. Allow students to explore on their own to find objects by date, country, or type. Challenge students to create a newspaper article about an artifact using the Newspaper Clipping Generator.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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JST Virtual Science Center Mind Lab - Japan Science and Technology Agency

Grades
6 to 12
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Enter the laboratory of the mind and experience visual phenomena and illusions used in psychological experiments. Discover the mysteries of perception and how the brain unconsciously...more
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Enter the laboratory of the mind and experience visual phenomena and illusions used in psychological experiments. Discover the mysteries of perception and how the brain unconsciously interprets the incoming information to construct our visual world. This site is available in Japanese too. This site is slow to open at times.

tag(s): brain (70), optical illusions (11), perspective (11)

In the Classroom

In the classroom, intrigue your students with visual perception experiments. When you study the brain, spend some time looking at how it works. Use on your projector or interactive whiteboard to challenge your students' perceptions. Use in any science class, psychology, physiology, anatomy, or biology as a way to extend the curriculum into real world experiments. In language arts classes, study the concept of perception and how it influences understanding. How do writers use perception to build setting and characterization? Use as a model for science experiments or ways to present research.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Word Search Builder - PedagoNet.com

Grades
K to 12
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Create a word search in a few easy steps. You can choose the size of the puzzle (10 x 10 to 100 x 100) as well as how many words ...more
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Create a word search in a few easy steps. You can choose the size of the puzzle (10 x 10 to 100 x 100) as well as how many words the puzzle contains. You can also choose the highlight color, background color, font size and "word management." Word management allows you the choice of words being forward and backward, diagonal, up and down, and more. Options allow for the puzzle to be played online or printed out.

tag(s): puzzles (208), spelling (168), word study (80)

In the Classroom

Use this resource to help students review spelling words or other content related vocabulary. Change the font to a larger size and print it out for young children or students that have vision issues. Have students create word searches for other students to take. Learning support teachers might want to have partners create word searches as a review activity for terms.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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