TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of Nov 10, 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
Grades8 to 12
In the ClassroomDeveloped by a teacher, Sail the Book is exactly what all good teachers wish they had time to do: create imaginative, integrated units that take advantage of today's technology. Sail the Book could be used in conjunction with a regular classroom study of one of the works of literature included. However, a reasonably self-directed student could undertake an independent reading of any of the books, using Sail the Book to gain further insight. Alternatively, the "tours" might help struggling readers or non-native readers get the most out of these works, helping the words come to life through more visual terms. The site seems uniquely suited to a multi-disciplinary setting like a gifted enrichment class, where students are free to pull from a variety of curricula--science, literature, geography, and history--to add value and rigor to the traditional classroom. The site is easily adaptable. Use one chapter. Use one full book. Do the tours with the activities or without the activities. And once your students have done a tour, ask them how THEY might construct a tour of their own related to some other work of literature they love. Creating their own could be an ideal unit for a gifted classroom or for gifted students going above and beyond the "regular" unit.
Grades3 to 12
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In the ClassroomUse an online tool such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here) to compare changing leaf colors in North Carolina with those in your area. Challenge students to create online montages about fall colors using images, slideshows, or comic strips using a site such as Infinite Canvas (reviewed here). Set up a Twitter exchange with another classroom around the country to compare changing leaf colors in your communities. Looking for more ways to use Twitter in the classroom? Read more about Twitter at TeachersFirst's Twitter for Teachers page. Find additional fall color sites on TeachersFirst to explore other locations.
Grades2 to 12
In the ClassroomUse the Cube Creator for virtually any lesson or activity. Try printing on heavier card stock so cubes are durable. Create a cube to practice math problems, describe habitats, outline important story events, and much more. Have students create a cube and share with other students to practice retelling, summarizing, adding synonyms, or review for tests. Have each of your students create an All About Me cube for parents to view at Open House or to get to know each other during the first week of school. Have others guess which cube belongs to which classmate. Create a cube review game where others must answer the question that comes up when you "roll" the cube. The possibilities are endless. Challenge your gifted student(s) to create a "Who Am I?" cube about a famous person they research. Use the Bio Cube option with one variation: DO NOT include the person's real name. Share the cube as a game for the rest of the class to guess (and then create their own similar cubes). Your gifted students may also come up with new ways to Create Your Own Cube that could become a class game! Invite them to try their creativity.
GradesK to 12
tag(s): bookmarks (60)
In the ClassroomUse this site to combine the url's of online class projects into one group (one url). Create a group of recommended resources for students or parents on a specific subject or topic and share that url through your classroom website or newsletter. Create a single url to all reading resources or math resources for students to explore at home. Create a url for each unit. Create a group with videos on a specific area of classroom content. Create a classroom account where students add resources they have found to share with others. Share this site with others in your building or district as an easy way to save and share online resources.
Grades4 to 12
In the ClassroomUse History's Heroes as a resource for teaching about unsung or little known heroes. Share the information on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Highlight a "Hero of the Week" from this website. Have students view activities on their own. Challenge cooperative learning groups to use the information to write a story persuading others that this person is or is not a real hero. (Common Core asks for evidence in supporting written opinions!) This site is excellent for enrichment or for gifted. Include it on your class web page for students to access both in and out of class. Have students use Fakebook (reviewed here) to create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook about any person featured on this site. Challenge students to "find" and create projects to share about other unsung heroes. Looking for some engaging presentation tools? Check out the TeachersFirst Edge Multimedia tools reviewed here. As you study local history, have students discover and describe the unsung heroes of your community. In higher level literature discussions, talk about the definition of "hero" and how these real life heroes compare to those in literature.
Grades1 to 5
tag(s): musical notation (32)
In the ClassroomUse this site in your classroom to supplement current music instruction (or to begin if you have lost your music teacher). Introduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students explore this site independently or in small groups. Share with parents of students taking beginning music lessons as a resource for learning notes on a scale. Make a shortcut to this site on classroom computers and use it as a center.
Grades11 to 12
In the ClassroomShare the video tutorials on your projector or interactive whiteboard in high level math classes. Use video tutorials from the site to introduce concepts in your flipped classroom. This site is excellent for alternative presentations for your advanced students. Include it on your class web page for students to access both in and out of class.
Grades4 to 12
In the ClassroomFor Earth Day or everyday, use this site to raise awareness about the energy that is used to create items and how energy can be saved by using recycled materials. Students can research statistics about the various items used in the United States and abroad. Discover why recycling is an important endeavor to combat pollution and energy use. Create a public service announcement for your school or community to learn more about the benefits of recycling. Initiate a recycling campaign and create a center for recycling many items from the school including paper. Classes can tally the pounds of materials saved for recycling. Have students create informational commercials and share them using a hosting service such as SchoolTube reviewed here.
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomSearch and view information from this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Find documents from similar time periods and events to compare and contrast different points of view. Have students download to create an annotated image including text boxes and related links using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here. Have students create timelines (with music, photos, videos, and more) using Capzles, reviewed here. Have students use Fakebook, reviewed here, to create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook about any of the founding fathers included on this site.
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomThis site would be perfect for use with an after school program directed at teenagers or as part of a unit on propaganda and media literacy. Use lessons and activities to inspire debate and discussion on the role of media in society and especially its effect on young girls. Talk about the impact of advertising on our ideas of what matters. Include this as part of a character education or consumerism unit. Use as an independent in-class activity for girls in the classroom. Allow students to explore the site then challenge students to create a presentation using Prezi (reviewed here) to explore issues related to media literacy.
Grades10 to 12
In the ClassroomMathics is for advanced math students who are also interested in computer programming. It would be ideal for use with gifted students to explore mathematics concepts and theories. If you feel unsure of how to use this site, be sure to view the Gallery for examples and more information.
Grades7 to 12
In the ClassroomUse on an Interactive Whiteboard or projector to see the land use changes in various locations "happen" in an instant. Discuss the reasons for the changes or brainstorm possible reasons. Use this as an introductory activity to various ecology or environmental topics. Research the native plants and animals displaced by human expansion in these locations. What environmental impacts are occurring in these areas? How have other locations changed in response to new uses such as Marcellus shale drilling, mountaintop removal for coal, etc? Discuss the possible changes and search out time lapse images that show changes. Have students create a "wanted" poster naming the "villains" who caused lasting damage to the environment, using a tool such as Poster My Wall, reviewed here.
Grades4 to 12
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tag(s): quotations (23)