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Google Treks - Dr. Alice Christie

Grades
K to 12
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GoogleTreks allows teachers and students to synthesize information in one easy-to-use Google Map that places text, pictures, audio files, video files, and much more in one central location....more
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GoogleTreks allows teachers and students to synthesize information in one easy-to-use Google Map that places text, pictures, audio files, video files, and much more in one central location. This site offers possibilities for exploration in all subject areas for all grades. The site is organized by both subject and grade-level tasks. Currently there are only a few examples to follow; however, they offer a variety of material and ideas for creating your own Google Trek or for students to create their own. After choosing a pre-made GoogleTrek, you are directed to a Google Map with different tasks and links.

There is an excellent tutorial for creating your own GoogleTrek that includes step-by-step directions with pictures. After creating a GoogleTrek, it can be posted to the site for others to use. Also included is a rubric that can be downloaded in pdf form. More information on Google Maps can be found at the TeachersFirst review. You can also view the maps in Google Earth. To learn more about Google Earth, see the TeachersFirst review (here).

tag(s): maps (287)

In the Classroom

Introduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students explore independently or in small groups. Older students can create their own GoogleTrek after viewing examples for any subject. To post the GoogleTrek, you must email the creator (directions are explicitly explained on the "Posting Your Own GoogleTrek" link. Have students create GoogleTrek's about Christmas Around the World, routes of explorers, famous landmarks, and important inventions. While presenting a GoogleTrek, have students identify points displayed on paper maps located at their seats.

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CurriConnects - TeachersFirst

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K to 12
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Use CurriConnects to find books related to curriculum topics or subject areas. Build student literacy skills, reinforce the place of curriculum concepts in other contexts, and help...more
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Use CurriConnects to find books related to curriculum topics or subject areas. Build student literacy skills, reinforce the place of curriculum concepts in other contexts, and help students build the important reading strategy of connecting what they read to prior knowledge. Share CurriConnects as links on your class web page or wiki or share them with school and local libraries where students can select books to accompany what they are studying. Topics include Earth Science, Explorers, Frontiers and Settlers, Geographic Wonders (landforms), Inventors and Inventions, Maps, Math in Use, Medicine and Health, The Artists's Eye (books with outstanding illustrations and books about artists), What Do You Do? (careers). More are being added on an ongoing basis. Grade ranges vary.

tag(s): book lists (128), independent reading (128), reading lists (75)

In the Classroom

Share CurriConnects as links on your class web page or wiki or share them with school and local libraries where students can select books to accompany what they are studying. Explore the many ideas TeachersFirst offers for using CurriConnects in your classroom. Be sure to share these lists with ESL/ELL teachers for reading selections to build student vocabulary and understanding of curriculum.

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Timelines: Sources from History - British Library

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4 to 12
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This site, created in the United Kingdom, offers many timelines with a simple click to launch an amazing 3-dimensional page. Timelines are organized by subject matter and include samplings...more
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This site, created in the United Kingdom, offers many timelines with a simple click to launch an amazing 3-dimensional page. Timelines are organized by subject matter and include samplings from literature, sociology, history, everyday life, science, technology, explorers, medicine, and more. With another click, you can zoom from one century to another. Start in the 1210s and work your way through the years. View the context of history using visual artifacts from DaVinci's contemporaries to shopping in the 1890s. Connect historical events or technological accomplishments by seeing them alongside simultaneous events, precursors, or results. An additional option allows you to save favorite timelines and/or events.

tag(s): europe (75), literature (275), politics (99)

In the Classroom

This site is excellent for research projects or to provide visual context to your curriculum in social studies, world cultures, world history, literature, art, or western heritage classes. Offer this set of timelines as a research source for history, social studies, and literature classes. Show students these timelines on an interactive whiteboard. Or have students research various topics on their own using this fabulous tool. Pique their interest by letting them browse to find out what else happened at the same time as events in the standard history curriculum -- then ask WHY. Challenge cooperative learning groups to create online posters displaying their findings using an online poster creator, such as Padlet (reviewed here).
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Marco Polo - Mr. Dowling's Electronic Passport

Grades
4 to 8
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Travel through time with Mr. Dowling's Electronic Passport to read about the history of Marco Polo and his adventurous family. This site offers a brief but thorough account of the ...more
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Travel through time with Mr. Dowling's Electronic Passport to read about the history of Marco Polo and his adventurous family. This site offers a brief but thorough account of the travels and life of Marco Polo. This site is a great reference tool for research and reports as well as an extension of a textbook lesson.

tag(s): explorers (61), marco polo (5)

In the Classroom

Use this site as a class webquest in conjunction with Marco Polo's Route to China and Back, reviewed here. Have students or groups research one area of this site and create a multimedia report to share with the class. Challenge students to narrate a picture using a tool such as Slidestory, reviewed here. Or have students create an online book using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here.

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Marco Polo's Route to China and Back - EDSITEment

Grades
2 to 8
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Marco Polo's Route to China and Back shows students the travels of two historical journeys of Marco Polo. As students correctly answer questions about each route, they travel further...more
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Marco Polo's Route to China and Back shows students the travels of two historical journeys of Marco Polo. As students correctly answer questions about each route, they travel further along on the map. If students answer the questions incorrectly, they are given the opportunity to click on a resource link that takes them to the correct answer. This site is not only challenging but fun for young explorers. The site also includes some wonderful authentic photos and drawings.

tag(s): explorers (61), marco polo (5)

In the Classroom

Incorporate this site into a web quest to build student knowledge of Marco Polo, interesting geography facts, and the history of Asia. Create a class wiki about Marco Polo and have students add different facts they learned or questions they might have. Not sure how to create a class wiki? Check out the TeachersFirst's Wiki Walk-Through.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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The Life and Voyages of Henry Hudson - Ian Chadwick

Grades
7 to 12
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This site details the life and many attempted voyages of the English explorer Henry Hudson. Although the site is very "wordy," it is very inclusive and excellent for research. It ...more
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This site details the life and many attempted voyages of the English explorer Henry Hudson. Although the site is very "wordy," it is very inclusive and excellent for research. It includes a lot of facts, maps, information about each voyage, information about nautical measurements, and details about his ships and crews. The information and maps available here are based on the author combing historical books and documents and information. An extensive bibliography and list of weblinks relating to Hudson adds interest to the maps and history on the site.

tag(s): explorers (61), maps (287)

In the Classroom

Have the students make a cumulative map of all Hudson's voyages together in order for them to get a chance to become intimately familiar with the map making process. Try a site such as Woices (beta) (reviewed here). Woices allows students to create audio recordings AND choose a location on a map where each story takes place. Have each cooperative learning group focus on a different exploration. Compare their creations with the online map which has all four voyages combined. Assign students in a group each a few pages of an imagined journal Henry might have written on each voyage. The most interesting part will be to imagine what happened to him after people no longer heard from him! Use this site as the starting point for individual research papers. Encourage students to find other resources that contribute to their knowledge of Henry Hudson. Have students write a talk Hudson might give if he suddenly woke up today (like Rip Van Winkle). Or make it more Web 2.0 and have students write blog entries. The text passages on this site are also ideal for reading comprehension practice. Project them on an interactive whiteboard for practice in main idea, summarizing, and more.

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Henry Hudson 400 - Henry Hudson 400 Foundation

Grades
5 to 12
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By viewing superimposed old maps from Henry Hudson's time on modern day Google, students and teachers have a unique opportunity to see the courses of his voyages while he was ...more
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By viewing superimposed old maps from Henry Hudson's time on modern day Google, students and teachers have a unique opportunity to see the courses of his voyages while he was searching for a short route to Asia. Besides maps, you will find photos, models of Hudson's ship, and read about other relevant historical data. An additional feature, Water Challenges, allows students to click on one of several sites and read about past and current water concerns.

tag(s): maps (287)

In the Classroom

Introduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Use these maps to commemorate the 400th anniversary of Henry Hudson's voyage. Share this link on your class web page and/or in a parent newsletter for those who are interested in American history, sailing, boat making, and exploring. Have students hand draw their own maps to show what other explorers have done. Or use another online mapmaking tool such as Mapskip (reviewed here) to create a map (with audio stories and pictures included)!

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Celebrate Hispanic Heritage - Scholastic

Grades
2 to 8
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This site highlights the historical contributions of Spanish speaking people, focusing on Hispanic America. Language learning opportunities, research projects, cultural analysis, and...more
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This site highlights the historical contributions of Spanish speaking people, focusing on Hispanic America. Language learning opportunities, research projects, cultural analysis, and biography writing are just some of the offerings available at three levels. The teacher's guide provides all the materials for each lesson, but the lesson is certainly adaptable to including the Latina students in your classroom who might have contributions to make. Additional site activities include music, recipes, crafts, games and other writing suggestions. In the Pinata concentration games, students learn a few Spanish words as they play!

tag(s): cinco de mayo (12), explorers (61), hispanic (18), spanish (108)

In the Classroom

Use the activities on this site as part of cultural heritage or explorer study in social studies or in conjunction with Latino literature selections in your reading classes. As you study communities and cultures with younger students, this site will give you a way to focus on an example. Use this site as part of your Cinco de Mayo celebration, as well. Many of the activities would work well as either whole class lessons on an interactive whiteboard or projector or small group "scavenger hunt" activities for upper grades on lab or laptop computers (make sure reading levels are appropriate if students must read on their own).
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Meet Amazing Americans - The Library of Congress

Grades
1 to 8
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This site offers some basic research on MANY "Amazing" Americans. Click to learn more about "Amazing" Leaders & Statesmen, U.S. Presidents, Activists & Reformers, Adventurers & Explorers,...more
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This site offers some basic research on MANY "Amazing" Americans. Click to learn more about "Amazing" Leaders & Statesmen, U.S. Presidents, Activists & Reformers, Adventurers & Explorers, Musicians & Composers, Writers & Artists, Industrialists & Entrepreneurs, Scientist & Inventors, or Athletes and Entertainers. Be prepared: when you click on one of the topics you may have a few people pop up OR more names than you can count! This is an excellent site for research, teaching students about American heroes, or using to enhance your social studies, science, or music curriculum. There are pictures, information, and even some interactives. There are also links to a Presidential Scavenger Hunt, a "Dynamite Presidents" interactive, and other "extras." Some of the activities require Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): composers (21), explorers (61), inventors and inventions (97), presidents (131), scientists (69)

In the Classroom

This site could be used throughout the entire year. Why not highlight a "hero of the week." Share the information on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students write diary entries (or blogs) from the perspective of the "hero of the week." Use this site for individual research projects and have students create multimedia presentations about their hero: a Powerpoint, website, blog, wiki, or video. This site can be used in more than just social studies topics. Music classes, science classes, and gifted classes can also benefit from the many research areas.
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The Biology Project - The University of Arizona

Grades
K to 12
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This site has something for every grade level - all about biology. It is a bit overwhelming at first, but easy to navigate. If you are a teacher (or parent) ...more
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This site has something for every grade level - all about biology. It is a bit overwhelming at first, but easy to navigate. If you are a teacher (or parent) of a K-8 student, go right to the "Young Explorers" link to find lesson plans, activities, puzzles, and more. If you are a high school biology teacher, you have just found a multitude of ready to go activities to share with your students (effects of tobacco, HIV virus, DNA, cell biology, and much more). There are lesson plans available for all grade levels. Most of the interactive challenges and presentations are designed for middle and high school students. Parts of this site require Flash and Adobe Acrobat. You can get both from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): cells (102), dna (69), marine biology (33)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of the free lesson plans available at this site. High school teachers (and middle school), share the tutorials and interactives on a projector or interactive whiteboard. Share this link on your class website, so students can access the information outside of your classroom.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Ancient Mexico -The Art, Culture and History of Ancient Mesoamerica - Patrick Oliveras

Grades
4 to 12
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Take your students on a lively and colorful exploration of ancient Mexico! This visually stunning site leads explorers through the pantheon of Mayan Gods, the fall of the Aztec empire,...more
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Take your students on a lively and colorful exploration of ancient Mexico! This visually stunning site leads explorers through the pantheon of Mayan Gods, the fall of the Aztec empire, a clickable Mesoamerican time line and a wonderful interactive map. View the ruins of the cities of Pre-Columbian Mexico by clicking on their names on the map! Watch the conquest of Mexico as a flash animation of ancient drawings and music. Read the words of the Spanish explorers in the primary source documents of Mexico. Although Ancient Mexico is a commercial site, the advertising is limited to the books and DVD's for sale on the topic of Mesoamerica and some history-related Google ads. This site requires Flash to enjoy the music and animation. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): mexico (34), spanish (108)

In the Classroom

Tour Ancient Mexico as a whole class activity with an interactive whiteboard or projector. If students have access to computers, let groups delve into selected topics and create travel posters and brochures as their research projects. Students can look at the cities in ruins, explore architectural styles and ceremonial uses of the buildings, and find contemporary examples.
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Ocean Life - Scholastic

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K to 9
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This website offers an introduction to the Scholastic Explorer's Ocean Life project. Students travel to Costa Rica, New Zealand, and other places to explore the ocean and animals. Students...more
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This website offers an introduction to the Scholastic Explorer's Ocean Life project. Students travel to Costa Rica, New Zealand, and other places to explore the ocean and animals. Students get to learn about real-life ocean explorers. There are also interactive challenges, sure to excite your students. A detailed Teacher's Guide is included. Most of the activities are geared towards students in grades 4-9. However, there are lesson plans (with standards) for students in kindergarten through grade 9. Links to plans for older students are no longer active. Some of the activities require Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): environment (317)

In the Classroom

This site is a wonderful addition to a unit about the ocean and ecosystems. Check out the lesson plans and see what is available for your grade level. If you teach grades 4-9, be sure to check on the interactive activities available at this website - perfect for your interactive whiteboard or projector.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Famous People - BBC

Grades
K to 3
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This website offers an excellent introduction to several famous people including Henry VIII, Pocohontas, Columbus, Nightingale, and others. Since this site was created by the BBC, you...more
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This website offers an excellent introduction to several famous people including Henry VIII, Pocohontas, Columbus, Nightingale, and others. Since this site was created by the BBC, you may find some "famous people" that your students aren't familiar with. Each famous person is highlighted with a slideshow about his/her life and achievements and a review quiz. There are also links for Journeys and a Timeline . Both of these links feature all of the famous people. There are links for parents and teachers to learn more about the website. This website requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): britain (35), explorers (61), great britain (16)

In the Classroom

Have students use this website for research projects about the famous people. Create a learning center featuring this website. Have students choose one person to learn about, view the slideshow, and then take the online quiz. If individual computers aren't available, all of the activities are ideal for an interactive whiteboard or projector. Why not highlight one famous person each week during a unit about explorers. Share the slideshow early in the week and then review using the quiz and journey activities. Have students help to create a bulletin board highlighting the famous people by drawing pictures, writing stories, or creating a map that relates to the "famous person of the week." Once you have "met" some world-famous people, connect to your local world by doing a class "report" on a "famous person" within your school community using PowerPoint: perhaps the head cook in the lunchroom or the principal. Be sure to include digital pictures.
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Pyramids: The Inside Story - NOVA: PBS

Grades
5 to 12
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Learn about each Egyptian pyramid by following explorers through the excavations, and learn about the exciting history of pyramid discovery and uncovering! View detailed inside views...more
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Learn about each Egyptian pyramid by following explorers through the excavations, and learn about the exciting history of pyramid discovery and uncovering! View detailed inside views of each site. Learn how to decipher hieroglyphics as you make your way through this fascinating site. Read about current digs and restoration efforts. The virtual exploration portions of the site require Quicktime. There is a link to download it, or you can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): archeology (32), egypt (67), pyramids (29)

In the Classroom

Use the lesson plan to build a scale model of a pyramid in your classroom or assign your students to explore the pyramids and collect information to compare them to burial customs of other ancient civilizations. You will definitely want to make this site available as a link from your teacher web page for further exploration. Teachers of gifted could use this as a springboard for an entire Egypt unit.

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Spice Up Your Life - Sue Swank and Kathy Dorr, Bellingham School District Teachers

Grades
3 to 7
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This unique project is all about spices and the age of exploration and discovery! The students are asked to complete 5 tasks (brochure, flow chart, trade agreement, resume and ...more
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This unique project is all about spices and the age of exploration and discovery! The students are asked to complete 5 tasks (brochure, flow chart, trade agreement, resume and letter). There are links provided for the instructors to find the research information, objectives and assessment tools. This is a unique approach to learning about exploration. The activity was designed for grade 5, but could easiy be used above that. Younger students will need to be in cooperative groups that include a good reader.

tag(s): explorers (61)

In the Classroom

If time does not permit your class to complete all five tasks, allow your students to choose and complete one task to demonstrate their knowledge.

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European Explorers - Jim Cornish

Grades
3 to 6
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This simple website (created by Jim Cornish, 5th grade teacher), provides information on explorers from England, France, Italy, Spain, Portugal and more! This website provides a great...more
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This simple website (created by Jim Cornish, 5th grade teacher), provides information on explorers from England, France, Italy, Spain, Portugal and more! This website provides a great deal of information on over 15 famous European explorers. There is also a "teacher resources" link. Lesson plans are provided at the "teacher resources" link. This teacher always creates good activities, even though the pages are plain and simple.

tag(s): explorers (61), vikings (10)

In the Classroom

Assign each student in your class a different explorer and send the entire class to this website. Or use a projector and interactive whiteboard to model research as a class project before turning them loose.

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Trading Card Maker - BigHugeLabs.com

Grades
4 to 12
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Create photo trading cards using images you upload or store on Flickr. Imagine having your students create study aides about famous people using images they draw and scan or photos...more
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Create photo trading cards using images you upload or store on Flickr. Imagine having your students create study aides about famous people using images they draw and scan or photos of themselves impersonating the famous people, such as presidents, explorers, authors, and more. If you celebrate reading by having an "author's tea," why not follow up by asking students to make trading cards for the authors they "met"? Use a similar approach for famous historical figures or even for geometric shapes you photograph with the digital camera. If students write their own "biographies" of the shapes to study from, they will learn for sure! They can even trade each other for favorites.

tag(s): book reports (35), famous people (19), images (266)

In the Classroom

Upload and tag your photo, type information, and print cards. Download finished card to your computer. Use for book reports for literature circles with each student in the group making a card for a different character in the book. This is also an excellent idea for special occasions for special people: mom, dad, grandma, grandpa, school nurse, school secretary, school custodian, favorite aunt, or anyone else! Be sure to print onto cover stock and laminate (if possible). What fabulous (and memorable) gifts. Check out the Big Huge Labs educator account. Easily pre-register students to avoid creating logins, view and download their creations, and view the site advertisement free. You will find information about the Educator Account here.

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The Cultures and History of America - Library of Congress

Grades
6 to 12
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This site accompanies an exhibition of 4,000 rare books, maps, documents, paintings, prints, and ojects focused on the early Americas from the time of the indigenous people of Mexico,...more
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This site accompanies an exhibition of 4,000 rare books, maps, documents, paintings, prints, and ojects focused on the early Americas from the time of the indigenous people of Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean through the period of European contact, exploration, and settlement. The site showcases two interactive artifacts: A 3-D view of the Tortuguero box, a seventh-century Mayan object, and a seventeenth-century book, The Buccaneers of America. The book features a page-by-page examination of the book along with written and audio translations of its contents. There is a nice picture gallery of other exhibits and a comprehensive bibliography.This site provides some nice visuals for a unit on indiginous peoples of the Americas. The picture gallery has some lovely maps from the Francis Drake expedition, and the information about buccaneers would provide a nice balance to the "Pirates of the Carribean" fantasy depiction of pirates. Some of the interactive features require FLASH. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): aztecs (8), explorers (61), mayans (12), spanish (108)

In the Classroom

Use portions of this site on a projector in class or spend a day on a "web hunt" with students answering questions you give them to find within the site. There is plenty to explore.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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PEEP and the Big Wide World - WGBH Educational Foundation

Grades
K to 2
1 Favorites 0  Comments
   
Follow Peep, the inquisitive, newly hatched fowl, as he embarks on a series of adventures involving patterns, colors, balancing, sound, memory and more. Click on the "Interactive Games"...more
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Follow Peep, the inquisitive, newly hatched fowl, as he embarks on a series of adventures involving patterns, colors, balancing, sound, memory and more. Click on the "Interactive Games" link to browse through the selections, there are currently ten. This site also includes an extensive collection of science lessons and printable coloring pages (see Activities and More ). The Peep Explorers Guide offers teachers three "ready to go" units. This site requires Flash. The lesson plans and unit require Adobe Acrobat. You can get both from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): colors (79), measurement (157), patterns (85), preK (281), sound (101)

In the Classroom

Let Peep help make your lessons even better! Use an interactive whiteboard or projector to share this site. Then set this site up as a learning center during your L.A., math, or science lesson block. Be sure to use the free lesson plans with your class. The science activities are quick and easy. Why not highlight one in each of your class newsletters? Be sure to list this link on your teacher website.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Age of Exploration - Mariners' Museum

Grades
3 to 7
0 Favorites 0  Comments
Learn about the courageous voyages that changed the course of human history with this comprehensive collection of activities, narratives, and teaching materials. Visual images and text...more
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Learn about the courageous voyages that changed the course of human history with this comprehensive collection of activities, narratives, and teaching materials. Visual images and text are woven together to create a useful resource for content enrichment and student research. Visit the "Activities for Students and Teachers" for ready-to-go activities with printable handouts that can be incorporated into transparencies, presentations, or reports.

tag(s): explorers (61)

In the Classroom

Use the activities portion of this site to add enrichment to your classroom. There are plenty of quick projects and lesson plans, but there are also two interactive web games that could be used to help students review information. Save those particular portions of the site as favorites on your computer and use them for a learning center or station.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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