TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of Jan 26, 2014

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

 

Less
More

MakeUseOf Cheat Sheets - makeuseof.com

Grades
K to 12
0 Favorites 0  Comments
MakeUseOf offers a large collection of tip sheets for popular programs such as Gmail, Mac programs, and Windows. Find over 40 help guides. Some of the topics include Safari for ...more
Here is the direct link to share this resource review. Feel free to copy and paste this URL into an email or place it on your web page or blog so others can read this TeachersFirst review:

 Close Link

MakeUseOf offers a large collection of tip sheets for popular programs such as Gmail, Mac programs, and Windows. Find over 40 help guides. Some of the topics include Safari for Mac Keyboard Shortcuts, Shortcuts For Special Characters on Windows, Evernote Search Tips & Tricks, Skype Shortcuts for Mac OSX, YouTube Tips, and several others. View by clicking the thumbnail or use the download link to print in PDF format.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): computers (79), search strategies (30)

In the Classroom

Useful both with students or personally, this is a site that you will definitely want to bookmark or save in your favorites. Print the guides for use with classroom computers, in computer labs, and to tape in student notebooks. Create a permanent link to these guides on your class website or blog for students (and parents) to use at home. Encourage students to use these sheets to become "techsperts" at a certain program and to share their expertise during byod activities.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

Add your comments below (available only to members) | Become a Member

Rating (click star to set rating):

Close comment form

You must be registered and logged in to add items to your favorites.
Use the form at the top of the page to log in, or click here to join TeachersFirst (it's free!).

Close

Less
More

Iris the Dragon - Gayle Grass

Grades
K to 6
0 Favorites 0  Comments
Iris the Dragon offers children's books to educate young children on mental health and wellness. The site has several FREE, downloadable e-books. There are other materials and offerings...more
Here is the direct link to share this resource review. Feel free to copy and paste this URL into an email or place it on your web page or blog so others can read this TeachersFirst review:

 Close Link

Iris the Dragon offers children's books to educate young children on mental health and wellness. The site has several FREE, downloadable e-books. There are other materials and offerings advertised on the site, but no purchase is needed to obtain the free e-Books. Topics include ADHD, Asperger's Syndrome, School Anxiety, Anger, Worry, and more. A few e-books are also available in French. Fill in the simple form with your name, books desired, and how you plan to use the books. (No email address is necessary, but can be provided if you want email updates from the website.) There is no "wait" period. E-books are available for immediate use.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): adhd (28), aspergers (6), autism (22), ebooks (40), mental health (26)

In the Classroom

Download books from Iris the Dragon for use in mental health lessons or to address specific classroom concerns. Use books as a read-aloud and display on your interactive whiteboard or projector during class meetings. Print and laminate books for use in guided reading lessons. Share this site on your class website for students (and parents) to read together at home.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

Add your comments below (available only to members) | Become a Member

Rating (click star to set rating):

Close comment form

You must be registered and logged in to add items to your favorites.
Use the form at the top of the page to log in, or click here to join TeachersFirst (it's free!).

Close

Less
More

You Can't Do Simple Maths Under Pressure! - us vs th3m

Grades
2 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Just as the title implies, this activity tests your ability to do simple math under pressure. Press play to begin. As you continue, the time bar moves more and more ...more
Here is the direct link to share this resource review. Feel free to copy and paste this URL into an email or place it on your web page or blog so others can read this TeachersFirst review:

 Close Link

Just as the title implies, this activity tests your ability to do simple math under pressure. Press play to begin. As you continue, the time bar moves more and more quickly. Move through levels from single digit operations to time problems and equations with multiple steps. Each level only takes about 30-60 seconds. A quick and easy review! This site seems well suited for upper elementary and secondary. However, younger elementary students would be able to do the lower (basic) levels. Turn off the (annoying?) sound using the icon at top right.

tag(s): addition (252), division (172), equations (155), multiplication (227), order of operations (33), subtraction (209), time (144)

In the Classroom

This is a really engaging site for use on your interactive whiteboard or classroom computers as a learning center. Challenge students to move up in levels with each session. Create a link on your class website or blog and have students post achievements as they play the game. Allow a student to operate the interactive whiteboard. Divide your class up into two teams and see which team can reach a higher level working together. This is a great challenge for the young and old alike!

Add your comments below (available only to members) | Become a Member

Rating (click star to set rating):

Close comment form

You must be registered and logged in to add items to your favorites.
Use the form at the top of the page to log in, or click here to join TeachersFirst (it's free!).

Close

Less
More

Composite Number Tree - Jeffrey Ventrella

Grades
4 to 12
2 Favorites 0  Comments
"See" factors and divisors in the form of a tree. Watch the Number Tree grow as each number (0-99) falls from the sky and attaches to a branch based on ...more
Here is the direct link to share this resource review. Feel free to copy and paste this URL into an email or place it on your web page or blog so others can read this TeachersFirst review:

 Close Link

"See" factors and divisors in the form of a tree. Watch the Number Tree grow as each number (0-99) falls from the sky and attaches to a branch based on the divisors of the number. Read some thoughts and questions about the growing tree in the information below. Although simple, this is a powerful visual for anyone exploring properties of numbers and building number sense.

tag(s): factoring (31), factors (42), multiples (34), number sense (97), numbers (203), prime numbers (31)

In the Classroom

Use the Number Tree as an excellent math conversation starter or journal prompt. Have students analyze numbers on each branch to identify the property that groups them together. Use the tree to discuss factors or multiples. Discuss questions on the site such as why the tree is bushier on the left side than on the right. Challenge students to grow the tree beyond 99 to higher numbers. Help your very concrete learners by having them "build" a similar number tree on your classroom wall using sticky notes. Color code the prime number notes as a special color so students "see" them. Try this activity on the 100th day of school to envision 100 a whole new way-- even in upper grades! Challenge your more capable students to create number trees with numbers from 500 to 599 or even higher.

Add your comments below (available only to members) | Become a Member

Rating (click star to set rating):

Close comment form

You must be registered and logged in to add items to your favorites.
Use the form at the top of the page to log in, or click here to join TeachersFirst (it's free!).

Close

Less
More

Howcast - The best how-to videos on the web - Howcast Media

Grades
6 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
  
Howcast is an aggregator of the "best" how-to videos across the Internet. These short, easy to follow videos cover a wide range of topics, including pop-culture. They are created by...more
Here is the direct link to share this resource review. Feel free to copy and paste this URL into an email or place it on your web page or blog so others can read this TeachersFirst review:

 Close Link

Howcast is an aggregator of the "best" how-to videos across the Internet. These short, easy to follow videos cover a wide range of topics, including pop-culture. They are created by HowCast "experts." One very handy feature is the text transcript included with each video (scroll down to see it). Browse through the categories or type a search term into the search box to view available videos. Categories include Fitness, Home, Food, Health, Arts, Tech, and more. Click "Share" on each video page to share via social networking sites or copy the embed code to share the video on a website or blog. The HowCast videos are not simply YouTube searches, so they have different offerings from what you might find there. Not all content at this site is appropriate for the classroom. Please be sure to preview before you share with your students. This is not one that you want students to explore on their own.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): business (57), careers (129), computers (79), financial literacy (78), money (192), politics (98), sports (95), video (251)

In the Classroom

The brief video clips on this site make it ideal for use when introducing or researching information. View together on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Cue up and pause your video at a point AFTER the opening ad to save class time! Embed onto your class website or blog for students to view at home. Use the transcripts as examples of how-to speeches and have students both read and watch to analyze the details of how to organize such a speech before making their own videos or giving live informational speeches. Bookmark and save for use as How To questions arise throughout the year. For example, if you have a question about using Microsoft Excel, search Howcast to find about 30 videos explaining different tools and tricks within the program. Preview any search results before sharing with the class. Use Howcast videos as examples in any subject area and challenge cooperative learning groups to create videos and share them on a site such as TeacherTube reviewed here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

Add your comments below (available only to members) | Become a Member

Rating (click star to set rating):

Close comment form

You must be registered and logged in to add items to your favorites.
Use the form at the top of the page to log in, or click here to join TeachersFirst (it's free!).

Close

Less
More

Haiku Deck - haikudeck.com

Grades
K to 12
0 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Create presentations that inspire with Haiku Deck presentation software. Sign up using your email, Facebook, or Twitter login to begin creating slides. Add words and backgrounds, edit...more
Here is the direct link to share this resource review. Feel free to copy and paste this URL into an email or place it on your web page or blog so others can read this TeachersFirst review:

 Close Link

Create presentations that inspire with Haiku Deck presentation software. Sign up using your email, Facebook, or Twitter login to begin creating slides. Add words and backgrounds, edit layouts, and add notes to personalize each slide. Upload your own images or type a phrase to find images included in Haiku Deck's extensive library. Save and share using social networking links or embed code when finished. Finished decks may also be saved as a PDF or exported to SlideShare reviewed here. Set your privacy options as public, restricted to only those with the url, or private. At the time of this review, Haiku was available on the web and iPad platforms only.

tag(s): images (261), slides (60)

In the Classroom

Create slide presentations for any lesson or teach students to create slides for class projects. In lower grades, create a project together on your interactive whiteboard or create them for your students to use. Create a presentation for use during Open Houses, class trips, or school events. Embed the slides on your class blog. Have students create short book reviews for classmates, explain a math concept or procedure, provide a short overview of a class field trip, or demonstrate a quick science experiment. The possibilities are unlimited. To find Creative Commons images for student projects (with credit, of course), try Wikimedia Commons, reviewed here. If you are lucky enough to have iPads for use in your classroom, download the app for students to create slide shows on their own.

Add your comments below (available only to members) | Become a Member

Rating (click star to set rating):

Close comment form

You must be registered and logged in to add items to your favorites.
Use the form at the top of the page to log in, or click here to join TeachersFirst (it's free!).

Close

Less
More

Science of NFL Football - NBC

Grades
5 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
   
Explore ten videos, each of which focuses on a certain aspect of science used in professional football. From the Pythagorean theorem to vectors to hydration and health, each video selects...more
Here is the direct link to share this resource review. Feel free to copy and paste this URL into an email or place it on your web page or blog so others can read this TeachersFirst review:

 Close Link

Explore ten videos, each of which focuses on a certain aspect of science used in professional football. From the Pythagorean theorem to vectors to hydration and health, each video selects an important aspect of science or math that contributes to successfully playing football. The practical application of these puzzling science and math concepts will surely make this site appeal to students! Don't miss the lesson plans and transcripts available with each video. While this activity is FREE, there are other parts of the NBC Learn site that are not.

tag(s): motion (58), newton (25), nutrition (154), pythagorean theorem (34), sports (95)

In the Classroom

Have students create online posters showing applications of the science or math described using their favorite teams as subjects. Create posters together as a class. Use a site such as Project Poster (reviewed here or PicLits (reviewed here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

Add your comments below (available only to members) | Become a Member

Rating (click star to set rating):

Close comment form

You must be registered and logged in to add items to your favorites.
Use the form at the top of the page to log in, or click here to join TeachersFirst (it's free!).

Close

Less
More

Vidtionary - vidtionary.com

Grades
K to 12
7 Favorites 0  Comments
  
Vidtionary is a video dictionary defining words through images (and videos). The short videos include the word said aloud and shown in print, with sound effects or engaging music in...more
Here is the direct link to share this resource review. Feel free to copy and paste this URL into an email or place it on your web page or blog so others can read this TeachersFirst review:

 Close Link

Vidtionary is a video dictionary defining words through images (and videos). The short videos include the word said aloud and shown in print, with sound effects or engaging music in the background. Browse entries using the search bar or view featured collections. Browse alphabetically or explore collections. Because of the wide range of topics and difficulty levels, these vocabulary words could be used with any age. Video lengths run less than one minute per definition, many as short as 10-15 seconds. Originally designed to teach English to speakers of Korean and Japanese, the visual nature of the site appeals to all language learners.

tag(s): dictionaries (55), vocabulary (323), vocabulary development (126)

In the Classroom

While this site is ideal for any student learning new vocabulary, it is especially useful for ESL/ELL students or speech/language students with vocabulary deficits. Share selected videos in primary grades to help students see how new words are defined and spelled. Challenge your gifted students to find new vocabulary words to share with the class. Use in any classroom as a model (sharing on your interactive whiteboard or projector). Then assign cooperative learning groups to create Vidtionary inspired videos of their own to explain curriculum terms, world language vocabulary, or SAT words. Use a tool like Moovly, reviewed here, and share them on a site such as TeacherTube, reviewed here.

Add your comments below (available only to members) | Become a Member

Rating (click star to set rating):

Close comment form

You must be registered and logged in to add items to your favorites.
Use the form at the top of the page to log in, or click here to join TeachersFirst (it's free!).

Close

Less
More

Project Mosaic: Zora Neale Hurston - Rollins College

Grades
7 to 12
0 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Discover Zora Neale Hurston through African-American history combined with traditional liberal arts subjects such as art, art education, anthropology, education, and history. Enhance...more
Here is the direct link to share this resource review. Feel free to copy and paste this URL into an email or place it on your web page or blog so others can read this TeachersFirst review:

 Close Link

Discover Zora Neale Hurston through African-American history combined with traditional liberal arts subjects such as art, art education, anthropology, education, and history. Enhance your awareness of African American History and of Hurston, famed novelist of Their Eyes Were Watching God and other 20th century works, through the primary and secondary sources featured on the site. Art work, articles, exhibitions, and lesson plans feature life in the time of Zora Neale Hurston.

tag(s): authors (118), literature (275)

In the Classroom

In the classroom, use Project Mosaic to enhance your study of civil rights, storytelling, women studies, Florida history, or literature. The primary and secondary sources provide a deeper look into life in the early 1900's. In your leadership unit, examine the challenges Zora Neale Hurston faced in her life and how she turned these problems into stepping stones to meet her goals. Expand into other areas such as history and culture during World War II, Korean War, Vietnam War, or even Desert Storm using primary and secondary sources. Have students interview groups of people who lived during those time periods, discovering how opinions greatly influence world events. Extend the study into literature and artwork of the period. Encourage students to become involved in local, state, or world events. Have students create their own renderings of the time period using one of the multimedia TeachersFirst Edge tools reviewed here.

Add your comments below (available only to members) | Become a Member

Rating (click star to set rating):

Close comment form

You must be registered and logged in to add items to your favorites.
Use the form at the top of the page to log in, or click here to join TeachersFirst (it's free!).

Close

Less
More

GIFMaker - GIFmaker.me

Grades
K to 12
0 Favorites 0  Comments
  
Create animated GIF images FREE and EASY using GIFMaker. Animated GIFs are images that change from one image to another automatically. There is no registration required. Select and...more
Here is the direct link to share this resource review. Feel free to copy and paste this URL into an email or place it on your web page or blog so others can read this TeachersFirst review:

 Close Link

Create animated GIF images FREE and EASY using GIFMaker. Animated GIFs are images that change from one image to another automatically. There is no registration required. Select and upload the images that you want to use (in PNG, GIF, or JPG format). Choose your animation speed and image size. You can even choose an image from your smartphone. Animations can be run backwards to create another different animation. Download the finished creation to your desktop.

tag(s): animation (59), images (261), photography (160)

In the Classroom

Create animations of any image! Animate inanimate objects such as a leaf or other object by taking two different pictures of it so it can "change." Use your animations as a focus for story creation or free writing. Animate images used by students for their individual web pages to set the scene for their "About Me" introductions. Design and shoot images to animate as an introduction to a project or report. Challenge older students to create their own animated GIF images. (No registration is required.) Photograph and create GIFs to show two stages of insect development, the growth of a plant, or other scientific concepts.
 
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

Add your comments below (available only to members) | Become a Member

Rating (click star to set rating):

Close comment form

You must be registered and logged in to add items to your favorites.
Use the form at the top of the page to log in, or click here to join TeachersFirst (it's free!).

Close

Less
More

ImageCodr - Xteq Systems

Grades
5 to 12
3 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Use this tool to correctly use and give proper credit for images from Flickr Creative Commons on any web age or wiki. Search for images using Flickr Creative Commons reviewed ...more
Here is the direct link to share this resource review. Feel free to copy and paste this URL into an email or place it on your web page or blog so others can read this TeachersFirst review:

 Close Link

Use this tool to correctly use and give proper credit for images from Flickr Creative Commons on any web age or wiki. Search for images using Flickr Creative Commons reviewed here or from the handy link provided on ImageCodr. Enter the URL for the picture page from Flickr, and ImageCodr will generate a block of HTML code for you to include on your web page or other online project. This code will make both the image AND the appropriate credit display. A brief licensing summary shows as a caption when you use the embed code. Note that this tool does not work for including images and credits in offline projects such as PowerPoint slides. It will work in any online tool that allows embed codes!

tag(s): creative commons (21), images (261), photography (160)

In the Classroom

Use this tool whenever Flickr Creative Commons pictures are used for any classwork or project. Be sure students understand the different types of images available and use ones that are licensed correctly. Use the embed code wherever you need to place the image, and BOTH the image AND the licensing will be displayed. Be sure to model use of this tool whenever using images from Flickr. What a handy way to include images on your own class web page! Post images as writing prompts, you-name-it science questions, or world language conversation starters, all from a simple Flickr CC image search!

Add your comments below (available only to members) | Become a Member

Rating (click star to set rating):

Close comment form

You must be registered and logged in to add items to your favorites.
Use the form at the top of the page to log in, or click here to join TeachersFirst (it's free!).

Close

Less
More

JPL Infographics - Jet Propulsion Laboratory of NASA

Grades
9 to 12
0 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Discover great Infographics from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Use this tool to create your own Infographics or upload ones already created. Easy directions are provided. Grab data...more
Here is the direct link to share this resource review. Feel free to copy and paste this URL into an email or place it on your web page or blog so others can read this TeachersFirst review:

 Close Link

Discover great Infographics from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Use this tool to create your own Infographics or upload ones already created. Easy directions are provided. Grab data from NASA to create your Infographic. Downloadable data includes images, data sets, and more. Share using social media. Be sure to view the gallery for very interesting uses of the data. You can download full resolution pdf files of the infographics (large files).

tag(s): infographics (42), nasa (40), space (206)

In the Classroom

Use Infographics from the gallery to begin a new unit or lesson. Share the infographics on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Annotate them on the whiteboard to "dig deeply" into the information. Engage students in brainstorming, critical thinking, or asking questions. Create Infographics to share with others by choosing relevant information from the NASA archives. Connect information learned in class to real world space information. Use this information as part of a project to report upon an aspect of space.

Add your comments below (available only to members) | Become a Member

Rating (click star to set rating):

Close comment form

You must be registered and logged in to add items to your favorites.
Use the form at the top of the page to log in, or click here to join TeachersFirst (it's free!).

Close

Less
More

Class Messenger - Learn Anything, Inc.

Grades
K to 12
4 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Looking for a tool to send reminders, surveys, or announcements to students or parents? This free tool provides many options for maintaining lines of communication. The site says setting...more
Here is the direct link to share this resource review. Feel free to copy and paste this URL into an email or place it on your web page or blog so others can read this TeachersFirst review:

 Close Link

Looking for a tool to send reminders, surveys, or announcements to students or parents? This free tool provides many options for maintaining lines of communication. The site says setting up an account takes you about 30 seconds! Create an account and a class. Students and/or parents create accounts as well. Parents (or students) then search for teacher name, class, or username to join. You can choose messages to be received through the app, by text message, or via email. Requests to join must first be approved by the teacher before receiving any messages. From the teacher dashboard, compose the type of message you wish to send, choose the recipients of the message, and type the body of the message. Messages are sent to each of the recipients using their chosen method. If students choose the SMS option, be sure they obtain parental permission FIRST, as standard messaging rates apply.

tag(s): classroom management (129), DAT device agnostic tool (192), homework (43), polls and surveys (47)

In the Classroom

Set up accounts for all of your classes. Send homework, project, and supply reminders. Send changes to plans due to a Snow Day. Remind students of upcoming events, practices, or things they need to bring to class or practice. Don't forget any extracurricular activities. You could also use this to communicate with parents. (Allow them to sign up for these updates at back to school night using a laptop or provide them the necessary information on your class web page.) Remind parents of big tests, report cards, field trips, deadlines, back to school night, sneaker days, conferences, and more. Learning Support teachers can promote organizational skills by having students and their parents sign up to receive reminders about tests and homework. Add your own messages to help parents know how to help their elementary child study. Need supply donations? Send out a request using Class Messenger. Set up a faculty reminder group within your school for emergency closures or department meetings and activities.

Add your comments below (available only to members) | Become a Member

Rating (click star to set rating):

Close comment form

You must be registered and logged in to add items to your favorites.
Use the form at the top of the page to log in, or click here to join TeachersFirst (it's free!).

Close