TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of Feb 19, 2017
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 go to the Featured Sites Archive
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Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomInclude this site as part of your digital citizenship lessons. Explore together what is the acceptable use, and what is not. Have students create online posters individually or together as a class using a tool such as Web Poster Wizard, reviewed here, or PicLits, reviewed here, to demonstrate the acceptable use of published work. Be sure to include a link to this tool on your class web page for student use at home.
Grades4 to 12
In the ClassroomUse GameMaker Studio as an interesting way to introduce coding to your class for beginners and experienced coders. Display GameMaker on your interactive whiteboard or projector as you progress through the steps to code a game, then have students create and explore on their own. After school clubs and activities can use GameMaker to learn to code. Use this tool with gifted students for a great challenge. Set up a coding activity center for interested students when they finish class work or for rainy days and snow days. Share this link on your class website for students to access both in and out of the classroom.
Grades8 to 12
In the ClassroomView videos with a projector or on an interactive whiteboard before assigning multimedia projects. Include a link to videos on your class web page for students to view at home. Set up a video chat time for one of these YouTube videos using a tool such as Watch Together, reviewed here, to discuss the video lesson. Be sure to share with your school's journalism teacher for use with writing and video projects.
Grades8 to 12
In the ClassroomCoding is an excellent way to teach critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Use this site as homework, a center, or in a lab setting. The site offers different levels, so differentiation is built in. Explain to students that coding is a critical skill in today's world filled with technology and will also be a valuable skill in the job market. Many jobs that will require coding do not yet exist. Put a link to this tool on your class website, blog, or wiki. Encourage advanced students to enter the monthly competitions offered on CodeChef.
Grades9 to 12
In the ClassroomBe very careful if using this in a classroom as there are discussions of items not appropriate for general consumption, and may be more appropriate as inspiration for discussing the main "sins" in your classroom. At a minimum, be sure to view and screen portions of the site for appropriateness before sharing with students. Have students create an online graph using Amblegraph, reviewed here, to analyze their digital usage. Share ideas and reflections comparing the positives of digital media versus the negative impacts. Exchange information from the site with your colleagues and school counselors as part of any professional development or discussions about the use of social media and digital tools. Share with parents who have concerns about their student's digital usage.
Grades5 to 12
In the ClassroomCoding is an excellent way to teach critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Use this site as homework, a center, or in a lab setting. Courses are self-paced, so differentiation is easy. Explain to students that coding is a critical skill in today's world filled with technology and will also be a valuable skill in the job market. Many jobs that will require coding do not yet exist. Put a link to this tool on your class website, blog, or wiki. Since registration is via email, for young students consider using a "class set" of Gmail subaccounts, explained here; this tells how to configure Gmail subaccounts to use for any online membership service. Using Gmail subaccounts will provide anonymous interaction within your class.
Grades8 to 12
In the ClassroomAlthough geared toward teacher professional development, use the list of skills and tools to create formative or summative assessments. Have individuals or groups of students research the topic of digital literacy using the site and then create presentations using some of the online tools suggested. Share with your administrators and other staff members.
Grades3 to 12
This site includes advertising.
In the ClassroomUse resources on this site as part of any digital etiquette and online safety lesson. Create a link to the site on classroom computers for students to explore on their own. Have students create a simple infographic sharing their findings using Easel.ly, reviewed here, or Venngage reviewed here.
Grades1 to 12
In the ClassroomBefore you begin work with any tool on the Internet, educate students with the most important lessons, keeping safe! Choose the age group and follow the lessons together as a group on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Continue discussions on your class blog. Add parents to your blog so they can reinforce lessons on Internet safety. Then it is time to introduce the Appropriate Use for Technology permission form, and this will now make sense to kids. Bookmark this site on classroom computers so students can refer to the information. Be sure to offer as a tool for parents to review and reinforce at home. At your technology night, have this up on your projector screen while parents are entering, so all get a needed reminder. Be sure student technology clubs examine and understand the concepts. Have the student technology club make their own videos introducing safety concepts.
GradesK to 4
This site includes advertising.