TeachersFirst's American Presidents Related Resources

Other TeachersFirst Special Topics Collections

Whether you are celebrating Presidents Day or learning about the Executive Branch of the U.S. government, this collection of reviewed resources about presidents provides a rich starting point for research, class study, or multimedia projects. If this list is too broad, use the search tool at the left of this page to find resources on a specific president or within a certain grade range. You may also be interested in TeachersFirst's Resources for U.S. Elections or TeachersFirst's Resources for U.S. Presidential Inaugurations.

 

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Maps of War

Grades
9 to 12
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This site offers a collection of Flash presentations that illustrate geopolitical aspects of war and religion. It's an eclectic mix: one animation traces the spread of world religions...more
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This site offers a collection of Flash presentations that illustrate geopolitical aspects of war and religion. It's an eclectic mix: one animation traces the spread of world religions over time and over a world map. Another looks at the American death tolls associated with each U.S. conflict and associates the President and political party associated with each war. A third examines the various political entities that have held territory in the Middle East. Visually, the animations are fabulous, but in order to be more than good looking, they would need to be paired with significant teacher context-setting, which is not presented on the site. For example, what does it mean that there have been more U.S. casualties in wars under Presidents who were Democrats than in wars under Republican Presidents? That factoid is the subject of one of the animations. The creator of the site does not name him/herself, saying only that the animations are intended to be unbiased and factual.

tag(s): iraq (31), middle east (37), religions (67)

In the Classroom

The animations would be stunning on an interactive whiteboard or projector, and teachers doing a unit on world religions or trying to backfill a history of Iraq would find certain presentations very useful. Be sure to click "View Full Screen" to fill your projector or whiteboard screen. American history teachers could use the animation on U.S. wars and casualties as an overview. The animations can be streamed from the site, or the whole package can be downloaded for use locally. On the whole, however, the site still leaves questions: Why these topics? Despite claims to the contrary, is there a political message here somewhere? Be sure to open this discussion with your students, as well. Since the site has "professional looking" glitz, should we believe it without any knowledge of its creator? If not, how can we check its accuracy?
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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African Odyssey - Kennedy Center

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6 to 8
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Appropriate for students High School and above as well as a resource for educators. This site is divided into three sections. The first lists African and African American arts and ...more
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Appropriate for students High School and above as well as a resource for educators. This site is divided into three sections. The first lists African and African American arts and cultural events at the Kennedy Center, in Washington DC and around the world. Another sections contains information and resources for learning and teaching about African arts and culture. The Interactive Opportunities section contains links to online discussions, events and educational projects. A very valuable site to those studying African Art and Culture! This site is maintained by the Kennedy Center and sponsored by American Express.

tag(s): africa (169)

In the Classroom

The K-12 Teacher's Resource has many links to organizations dealing with these topics.

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This Day in History - A&E Television Network

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5 to 12
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This historical site features short videos (1 minute in length) that highlight "This Day in History." Topics include a mix of everything: government, world geography, world history,...more
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This historical site features short videos (1 minute in length) that highlight "This Day in History." Topics include a mix of everything: government, world geography, world history, health history, discoveries, and much more. The video clips highlight several events from each day. They span the past few centuries and include various subjects and topics. Be aware with the videos, if you stay on the site and do not click "pause" or click on another link, you will automatically go to the video for the following day. So if you don't want your students to "peek ahead," be sure to click "pause." There is a short advertisement when you arrive at this site, so you may want to click on the site before you use it with your students and then click "pause" at the start of the video clip.

Although the videos are the highlight of this site, there is much more to explore! On the right side bar you will find text boxes to enter ANY date and choose the category. Some examples of categories include Civil War, Cold War, Presidential, Sports, Old West, World War I and II, Entertainment, and several others. On the left side bar there are even more topics and links to explore. Once you click on the subject area, specific "story topics" are provided under the subject. Both of the features on the right and left side of the site display text information, not video clips. This site does require Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): presidents (124)

In the Classroom

You can add this in your RSS reader. Why not use the RSS feature to remind you of the day's events? Share the site on an interactive whiteboard or projector. The topics on the left and right side bars make excellent research references.

For a classroom-ready activity each day to build understanding of historical events in the context of your students' prior knowledge, also try TeachersFirst's Dates That Matter. Include both links on your teacher web page for instant access by students both in and out of class. Maybe start a class wiki for your own "This Day" collection and assign student groups a day of their own. Add to it from year to year. Or have students write blog responses on class or individual blogs as they choose an event for the day from several sources and react to it.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Perfect resource for stimulating interest on a variety of topics. Patricia, NJ, Grades: 6 - 12

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Presidents' Day Resources - TeachersFirst

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K to 12
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Find resources and activities appropriate for Presidents' Day in this collection from TeachersFirst. Choices include information about various presidents, the White House, inaugurations,...more
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Find resources and activities appropriate for Presidents' Day in this collection from TeachersFirst. Choices include information about various presidents, the White House, inaugurations, first ladies, elections, and more.

tag(s): holidays (144), presidents (124)

In the Classroom

Use these resources to connect Presidents' Day to your curriculum in almost any subject or select one or two ideas to highlight along with your regular lessons. This collection would also be useful during a unit on the three branches of government, specifically investigating the Executive branch.

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The American Journey: Modern Times - McGraw Hill

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6 to 12
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McGraw Hill publishes this set of videos as a companion to their textbook "American Journey: Modern Times" which covers US History from the Civil War to the Present. This collection...more
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McGraw Hill publishes this set of videos as a companion to their textbook "American Journey: Modern Times" which covers US History from the Civil War to the Present. This collection of over 50 short videos is designed to accompany sections of the text; the videos are labeled according to the section of the text. There is a short title that will help you locate videos focused on various eras even if you are not using this particular textbook. If that's the case, however, you'll need to do a little digging to see what each video covers, as the titles are very general.

tag(s): civil war (143), great depression (27), presidents (124), world war 1 (55), world war 2 (142)

In the Classroom

Use these videos on an interactive whiteboard or projector as a class opener, or as a transition between lecture and an activity. Their length (2 to 3 minutes) makes them perfect for helping visual learners focus on the main events, or for providing a preview or summary of lecture topics. They may not form the centerpiece of your lesson, but they're nice to have in your "back pocket" to use as an enhancement.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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JFK 50 - John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum

Grades
7 to 12
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This web site honors the legacy of President John F. Kennedy in recognition of the fifty years that have passed since his inauguration on January 20, 1961, when he first ...more
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This web site honors the legacy of President John F. Kennedy in recognition of the fifty years that have passed since his inauguration on January 20, 1961, when he first captured the hearts of Americans and memorialized a moment in history with his words, "Ask not what this country can do for you, but what you can do for your country." JFK50 is filled with cutting-edge multimedia that inspires and invites students to explore the themes of public service, civil rights, leadership, and more to discover how relevant they remain to social and political issues today.

tag(s): kennedy (25), presidents (124)

In the Classroom

Use this website as your online destination for teaching, researching, and starting a conversation about the primary people, changes, speeches, and events of the John F. Kennedy era. Do not miss the links at the upper left corner of the home page for the Legacy Gallery, Downloads and Resources, and "History Now" which provides an interactive timeline that links today's date to details of what transpired during JFK's presidency. Highlight the ideals articulated fifty years ago to serve as a springboard for today's students to become actively involved in public service by projecting the authentic broadcast reports, videos, newspaper accounts, and other media on your classroom whiteboard or projector. Team up with colleagues in other departments to engage in interdisciplinary learning projects. You may want to have students collaborate to put a new spin on a research report. Challenge them to create a newspaper article about the domestic affairs, foreign policies and diplomacy, the arts, or any of the other extensive topics found on JFK50 by using the Newspaper Clipping Generator. Polish it off by having students create magazine covers that reflect the content of their articles, essays, or reports by using Magazine Cover Maker reviewed here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Springfield Library-Google Options - Joyce Valenza

Grades
4 to 12
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Find a collection of Google search tools all in one place! For those trying to figure out all of the wonderful options for searching on Google, this is the site. ...more
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Find a collection of Google search tools all in one place! For those trying to figure out all of the wonderful options for searching on Google, this is the site. Just click on the type of Google search you want to learn about, and you will be there! Whether you need to search for books online, scholarly articles, or want to search the New York Times or the Washington Post, this is the place to start. Whether your search is professional, for research, or personal, make it easy on yourself and start with this site.

tag(s): search engines (61)

In the Classroom

Share on your projector or interactive whiteboard to give kids an overview--or explore yourself to learn all the options! This is a great resource for searching through different tools. Students could each take one of the sites for video and dissect it to look for things like intended audience, subject matter it's best for, and advantages and disadvantages of the site as a source. This is a great link to share on your class website for students (and parents) to use at home.

TV and Yearbook Classes: The links under "Copyright-friendly" would be a great starting point for a dialogue on what is fair or unfair to use, and would be a wealth of resources for students as they work to complete projects and pages. TV: The student video portion as a go-to for high-quality student-produced content is a must for any class in production. Have students share news from around the world posting on your class Wiki. Not familiar with wikis? Check out the TeachersFirst's Wiki Walk-Through. Have student groups "Advertise" different Google tools by doing a live demo on projector or interactive whiteboard for the class. Then use a poll such as Votesy, reviewed here, to find out which tool students vote as "most useful."
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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State of the Union Address 2011 - guardian.co.uk

Grades
6 to 12
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See a comparison of State of the Union Address language from President Obama, 2011, to past presidents and speeches. These word clouds offer a visual comparison of the most frequent...more
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See a comparison of State of the Union Address language from President Obama, 2011, to past presidents and speeches. These word clouds offer a visual comparison of the most frequent words in different presidential speeches. You can make your own clouds of speech text using Wordle, reviewed here and similar word cloud tools to add to the comparison options.

tag(s): presidents (124), speech (92), speeches (19)

In the Classroom

Share these word clouds on interactive whiteboard or projector to analyze the presidential agendas in a civics or government class. Have students make their own clouds of text from other speeches using Wordle, reviewed here or similar word cloud tools to add to the comparison options. During political campaigns, share this comparison and invite students to create ones of their own between different candidates. In English/language arts classes, use the word clouds to spark discussion of propaganda techniques, word choice, and effective speech techniques. Share this discussion in debate club, as well, to point out the importance of carefully crafted messages. Have students create and compare clouds of their own speech drafts while studying persuasive writing.

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Mr Nussbaum's Language Arts - Greg Nussbaum

Grades
K to 8
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This site was developed with the idea that crucial concepts, themes, ideas, and fact sets taught in the classroom can be enhanced over the internet through interactivity. Furthermore,...more
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This site was developed with the idea that crucial concepts, themes, ideas, and fact sets taught in the classroom can be enhanced over the internet through interactivity. Furthermore, for teachers to have a reliable k -8 internet site to use in the computer lab or in the classroom, that likely covers one or many themes currently being taught. The Language Arts portion of the site contains several activities that can supplement any Language Arts program. Spelling Central allows teachers to input their own spelling words then converts the list into a word search, abc order practice, missing letter practice and a mixed up word activity that can be printed or practiced by students online. In addition, there are Language Arts games, reading comprehension exercises, story units, practice with commas, abc order, nouns and pronouns and more. Be sure to check out the animated biographies of George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, and Abraham Lincoln. Students will need to be cautioned to ignore the ads on the right hand side of the page when exploring the site.

tag(s): alphabet (87), alphabetical order (19), presidents (124), spelling (167)

In the Classroom

This site will work well for classrooms with individual spelling lists as students can input their own list to create printables and online activities for spelling practice. Watch the animated biographies on your interactive whiteboard as part of your President's Day activities. Make a shortcut to this site on classroom computers and use it as a center. Share the link to the site on your classroom website or blog for students to access from home.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Gettysburg Address on Vimeo - Adam Gault

Grades
6 to 12
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Our students are accustomed to having both audio and video content to the information they access. Consequently, just reading something like the Gettysburg Address can seem dry and...more
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Our students are accustomed to having both audio and video content to the information they access. Consequently, just reading something like the Gettysburg Address can seem dry and sterile to them. This video provides both a rich reading of Lincoln's famous speech, but an accompanying video track to illustrate it.

tag(s): civil war (143), gettysburg (26), gettysburg address (18), lincoln (85), presidents (124)

In the Classroom

For those who are not strong readers, the audio-video combination provided here may make the concepts in the Gettysburg Address more accessible. For other students, there may be deeper, more complex questions sparked by the video. Did the creator of the video capture the concepts authored by Abraham Lincoln adequately? This video could be the "jumping off place" for a variety of questions the class might consider or project ideas for individual students. How might you do it differently? What about other well-known speeches or documents? How would you illustrate them for a similar video? Challenge students to create their own video accompanying a famous speech and share the video using a site such as SchoolTube (reviewed here).
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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MathTrain.TV - Eric Marcos

Grades
5 to 9
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This site is part of the Mathtrain.com Project and was created to host student-created math video lessons all in one place. It was created by Mr. Marcos and his students ...more
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This site is part of the Mathtrain.com Project and was created to host student-created math video lessons all in one place. It was created by Mr. Marcos and his students at Lincoln Middle School in Santa Monica, CA. Videos are searchable by topic or by most viewed, most recent, or most discussed. The site is highly interactive and has an option to subscribe to their free podcast through ITunes. In addition to the student-created videos, there are also teacher-created videos with explanations on different math topics. Most videos are under 2 minutes in length making them perfect to use for introduction or review with different math topics. This site runs in conjunction with mathtrain.com.

tag(s): equations (150), podcasts (59)

In the Classroom

Choose a student-created video to use as an introduction for a new math topic. For example, when working with multi-step equations, show one of the student's videos on the site on your interactive whiteboard as an example of how one student solved the problem. Use this as a springboard to classroom discussions on problem solving equations. There are several videos on the site with this topic, so a new video can be shown each day as examples of different problem solving methods. Use the student examples in your classroom to demonstrate how students can explain different math topics, then create your own explanatory video or audio presentations. Have students create podcasts using a site such as PodOmatic (reviewed here). Or challenge students to create a video and share using a site such as SchoolTube (reviewed here). Post student work to your classroom website or blog for students to use at home for review.
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Congress.org - C-Q Roll Call, Inc

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9 to 12
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Congress.org is a product of the larger group of news publications that include Congressional Quarterly and Roll Call, both long-time sources of news about Washington politics. The...more
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Congress.org is a product of the larger group of news publications that include Congressional Quarterly and Roll Call, both long-time sources of news about Washington politics. The site collects news stories, letters to congress and statements from political advocacy groups in one place for the reader to survey. The site is as non-partisan as possible, and it's possible you will find links to statements from the National Rifle Association next to those from the the Society of Friends. There is also a running accounting of recent votes in Congress for those trying to keep up with current legislation. Be aware, however, that one portion of the site includes letters to Members of Congress written by subscribers; previewing in advance is advised.

tag(s): congress (30), elections (74), house of representatives (9), senate (9)

In the Classroom

Consider placing this site on your class web page for students to use in researching political viewpoints, both in relation to upcoming elections and in ongoing political debate. It's a site for true politics junkies, but will be useful for those who are looking for concise information collected in a readable, easy-to-access format. Use the site during your study of the legislative branch and have groups follow congressional groups of individuals, creating a timeline of their activities using a tool such as History in Motion,

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Learning Games for Kids

Grades
K to 6
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Learning Games has a large selection of games divided into easy to find categories. Topics include typing, music, history, science, health and more. For example, in the Social Studies...more
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Learning Games has a large selection of games divided into easy to find categories. Topics include typing, music, history, science, health and more. For example, in the Social Studies category there are games to learn U.S. presidents and women in history. Each game includes an explanation of game rules. There is even a category with education songs and videos that includes Science songs!

tag(s): keyboarding (38)

In the Classroom

Include this site for your computer center time. Challenge students to post the highest score on the math games. Use the keyboarding practice games to help students learn proper keyboard placement of fingers.
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Poet at Work: Walt Whitman Notebooks 1850s-1860s - Library of Congress

Grades
8 to 12
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This rare collection offers digital access to the Walt Whitman Notebooks and cardboard butterfly that were donated to the Library of Congress by Thomas Harned, all of which have been...more
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This rare collection offers digital access to the Walt Whitman Notebooks and cardboard butterfly that were donated to the Library of Congress by Thomas Harned, all of which have been conserved through a delicate scanning process. The notebook pages appear just as Whitman wrote them, with no table of contents or index. You are able to browse the notebooks page by page; however, because there is no subject index for the collection, a page turner function has been added to help. The Learn More About It documents will assist you in conducting a quicker search by providing links to specific passages, such as Whitman's extensive historical details on the life and death of President Abraham Lincoln, who symbolized for him the best in the American national character and inspired some of his greatest poetry. There is also a feature to save or print the Collection Connections.

tag(s): civil war (143), lincoln (85), literature (272)

In the Classroom

Use this online exhibit for an in-depth study of Walt Whitman. Have cooperative learning groups investigate one of the notebooks available at this site and create a multimedia presentation to share their findings. Have students create podcasts using a site such as PodOmatic (reviewed here). Or create a class wiki dedicated to the poetry of Walt Whitman. Not comfortable with wikis? Have no wiki worries - check out the TeachersFirst's Wiki Walk-Through .
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The Lincoln Log - University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Grades
4 to 10
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This site provides a daily chronology of the Life of Abraham Lincoln. Information can be accessed by conducting a general search, by year, using a calendar to search, or by ...more
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This site provides a daily chronology of the Life of Abraham Lincoln. Information can be accessed by conducting a general search, by year, using a calendar to search, or by clicking on search this day. Links to supporting documents and additional information is embedded in the entries.

tag(s): lincoln (85), primary sources (90)

In the Classroom

This site will fit perfectly into any social studies or history class. Have students explore this site independently or in small groups. If used independently put the site on a classroom computer and use as a center. Create a class job for a student called Historian. They can check the website to see what was happening that day and report it to the class. Have students choose an event from the site, find an image of Lincoln and upload it to Blabberize reviewed here They can then have Lincoln "talk" about an important day of his life.

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School by Fire - Museum of Glass

Grades
4 to 12
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Let your class transform hot molten glass into art without having to call the fire department. School by Fire is a virtual interactive glassblowing activity that demonstrates the process...more
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Let your class transform hot molten glass into art without having to call the fire department. School by Fire is a virtual interactive glassblowing activity that demonstrates the process of creating "macchia" glass. Students experience the complete sequence of steps while keeping a close eye on the temperature of the fire. When students finish their glass project, they can print it out. The Museum of Glass has other interactive features such as "Spontaneous Design," videos, and live Hot Shop viewing of glassmaking. There is also a "Museum of Glass" YouTube channel full of interviews and glassblowing demonstrations.

tag(s): artists (78), sculpture (21)

In the Classroom

Share this site on an interactive whiteboard or projector and then let students explore the site alone. Art and science teachers could use this interactive technology to demonstrate the interconnected nature of the two disciplines. Art teachers can use this interactive to give students a chance to understand an art form not available at school. Science teachers could use this site as an anticipatory set or "activator" to introduce a unit or lesson on heat and molecules. Science and Chemistry students may enjoy the "Science and Glass" page found under the "Learn" tab. World history courses studying ancient Rome, Middle Ages and Renaissance could use this fun interactive and their video "Fire Gods" to launch a comparative study development of how glassblowing (art) effect the social and economic influence of a region. This site is excellent for enrichment. Include it on your class web page for students to access both in and out of class. Schools in the Tacoma Washington area can take advantage of the Science and Art curriculum, schedule field trips, or look into having the Mobile Hot Spot come to your school.
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Voices in the Dark - Sean Puckett and Dawn Keenan

Grades
K to 12
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The website "Voices in the Dark" is a source for audio recordings of classic novels, legends, poems, and essays. There are approximately 150 ageless titles such as Charles Dickens's...more
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The website "Voices in the Dark" is a source for audio recordings of classic novels, legends, poems, and essays. There are approximately 150 ageless titles such as Charles Dickens's "Christmas Carol" and Washington Irving's "Legend of Sleepy Hollow." Each audiobook comes with an accompanying text transcript and are typically short. Receive regular updates by subscribing to their syndication feeds through RSS or podcasts. The audio files come in both low and high bitrates MP3 files that will match your computer's storage space and Internet bandwidth capabilities.

tag(s): fluency (25), literacy (106)

In the Classroom

Engage your class in real world learning while building fluency and reading skills. "Voices in the Dark" is always looking for people to contribute to their on-line library of audio books. Consider having your class submit an audio recording of their own to the collection. First choose a genre to focus on such as Fairy Tales or Aesop Fables. Review the page that contains directions on how to select stories, create a recording, and submit work. There is a list of links full of public domain books from which to choose. They provide tips on how to record your reading and directions on how to submit your work. Sites such as Audio Pal reviewed here may be helpful in creating your recordings. Of course, check with your administrator before attempting this project and obtain parent permission before sharing or posting student work.

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