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Just For Kids - Idaho - State of Idaho

Grades
3 to 6
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Learn a Little and Have Some Fun! Idaho's government website for kids offers facts, information, and history about the state. Capital Building Trivia offers an extensive history...more
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Learn a Little and Have Some Fun! Idaho's government website for kids offers facts, information, and history about the state. Capital Building Trivia offers an extensive history about their capital building including construction dates, materials used (four types of marble among them), and estimated replacement cost in today's dollars. The School Report Resources section contains all the vital state information such as the state seal, motto, flag, population statistics, and more. Be sure to check out all of the information about the famous Idaho state potatoes included in this section. At the time of this review, one of the links on the "Student Links" page, was no longer active.

tag(s): states (162)

In the Classroom

Have students use a tool such as Padlet (reviewed here) to create an online bulletin board to use to display information they learn about Idaho. Share this site with students on your interactive whiteboard (or projector). Then allow students to explore on their own when researching state information.

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Hawaii School Reports - Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau

Grades
3 to 6
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Find basic facts about the state of Hawaii for school reports at this site. Links within the site lead you to pages with the state symbols including the flag, seal, ...more
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Find basic facts about the state of Hawaii for school reports at this site. Links within the site lead you to pages with the state symbols including the flag, seal, motto, and more. Especially helpful is the information included about the state's weather including water and surf information. Be sure to explore the state history link which includes in-depth information about the state's rich history beginning with the early Polynesian explorers up to present day statehood.

tag(s): hawaii (7), pearl harbor (12), states (162), volcanoes (61), weather (188)

In the Classroom

Brainstorm with Edistorm (reviewed here), having students add sticky notes of things they learn - or questions-- on the online shared whiteboard. Use this site when your class is researching for state reports to gather information.

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Interactive Colorado Map - Colorado.com

Grades
2 to 6
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You can find interesting facts and information about the state of Colorado by visiting this interactive website. Learn about 14er's (no, not 49er's) found in the state, people and places,...more
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You can find interesting facts and information about the state of Colorado by visiting this interactive website. Learn about 14er's (no, not 49er's) found in the state, people and places, and Colorado facts. Be sure to visit the link with Colorado podcasts to view many videos about wildlife found in the state, activities to do such as biking and water rafting, and snowshoeing. Also available for download from the site are puzzles and pictures in pdf format. Many portions of the site containing facts that are also available to print easily.

tag(s): mountains (13), states (162)

In the Classroom

Have students create a simple online posters using PicLits (reviewed here to show information learned from the site. Share the site with students to use when researching for state reports. Create a scavenger hunt with facts from the site for students to explore and find during computer time.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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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 (32), middle east (30), religions (61)

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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Mr. Donn's Social Studies - Mr. Donn

Grades
K to 8
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This is a site that contains numerous links to lessons and websites on various social studies and world history subjects. There are numerous subjects: Age of Exploration, Roaring 20s,...more
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This is a site that contains numerous links to lessons and websites on various social studies and world history subjects. There are numerous subjects: Age of Exploration, Roaring 20s, 50 states, World Geography, African Kingdoms, and countless others. There are lesson plans, links, videos, and more.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): 1920s (16), africa (180), archeology (32), china (66), civil rights (117), civil war (145), colonial america (107), egypt (67), great depression (24), greece (26), holidays (147), immigration (58), india (36), industrial revolution (25), japan (61), mayans (12), mesopotamia (6), native americans (78), psychology (64), religions (61), renaissance (34), resources (112), rome (27), slavery (72), westward expansion (29)

In the Classroom

This is the perfect site for Social Studies and History teachers. Use this site for background information when planning lessons. Place this link on your classroom computers to provide students with safe places to research. Several topics have video clips that are perfect for showing on a projector or interactive whiteboard. If using this site for research, challenge students to create a multimedia presentation using one of the many TeachersFirst Edge tools reviewed here.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Independence Day Around the World - Chartsbin

Grades
2 to 12
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This site offers an interactive world map showing Independence Day dates from around the world. You simply hover the cursor over any country that was formerly a colony to see ...more
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This site offers an interactive world map showing Independence Day dates from around the world. You simply hover the cursor over any country that was formerly a colony to see the date of its independence from that country. All countries that used to be part of Great Britain are the same color; color coding for other former empires indicates the empire's former holdings. Data comes from reliable government and other statistical sources. At the bottom of the page, related charts that may be of interest show: Father's Day around the World, Mother's Day around the World, Halloween Celebrations around the world and more.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): colonial america (107), holidays (147), july 4th (9)

In the Classroom

Keep this site in mind as a reference source when students study world cultures or foreign languages. Challenge students to use this site to create research projects about individual (free) nations around the world. Have individual students or cooperative learning groups create a multimedia presentation using a tool such as Mapskip (reviewed here) to create a map of the country they researched (with audio stories and pictures included)!
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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The International Civil Rights Center & Museum - The International Civil Rights Center & Museum

Grades
5 to 12
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The International Civil Rights Center & Museum site highlights the non-violent protests of the 1960's Greensboro, NC sit-in movement. This site has links to the history of the sit in...more
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The International Civil Rights Center & Museum site highlights the non-violent protests of the 1960's Greensboro, NC sit-in movement. This site has links to the history of the sit in movement and other civil right movements. There is also a section of photos and videos that is continuously being updated, so be sure to check back frequently. Though this site is relatively new, there are several good historical timelines and chronologies.

tag(s): 1960s (30), african american (113), black history (59), civil rights (117)

In the Classroom

Have your students use the information about the people of the sit-in movement to write a biography. Add drama to your classroom and have students pretend to be one of the protesters. Have them write a monologue and present it to the class. Have students create public service announcement posters using Piclits (reviewed here). Use the announcements that can be found in the image gallery for examples.
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Arizona Kid's Page - State of Arizona

Grades
3 to 8
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Learn more about the state of Arizona with this site offering facts and information just for kids. Choose the Natural Wonders link to learn about the many natural wonders and ...more
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Learn more about the state of Arizona with this site offering facts and information just for kids. Choose the Natural Wonders link to learn about the many natural wonders and national parks within the state such as the Grand Canyon, the town of Tombstone, and the Apache Trail. Get a brief geographical background on the formation of the state by choosing the Arizona History link tracing the known time range of man living in the state back 20,000 years. Learn about state facts, emblems, motto, and much more in the facts section (did you know Arizona has official state neckwear?). Be sure to check out the state photos section for realistic images of many portions of the state and of it's natural wonders.

tag(s): national parks (16), native americans (78), natural resources (59), westward expansion (29)

In the Classroom

Share this site with students when working on state research projects. Display photos included on the site with students on your interactive whiteboard or projector when discussing Arizona, the Grand Canyon, or other areas of the state. Copy and use the coloring pages with the state seal, flag, and other images when learning about the state of Arizona. Rather than having students create a traditional research project, have students create a multimedia presentation using Thinglink, reviewed here. This site allows users to narrate a picture.

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Around the World (About 20,000 Times) - Wall Street Journal

Grades
5 to 12
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This site shares great summary of the U.S. space shuttle program. An interactive graph shows icons organized by year for each space mission. Clicking the icon shows the vital ...more
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This site shares great summary of the U.S. space shuttle program. An interactive graph shows icons organized by year for each space mission. Clicking the icon shows the vital information about each mission, including the date of the mission, distance it covered, the duration of its flight, its orbital altitude, and the number of earth orbits it made. Each icon has different symbols to describe the mission visually. There is a clear explanation of the icon meanings. Click on just one orbiter to see its missions; sort by date, mission type, mission duration, spacecraft, altitude, and number of orbits. There is a color coded summary of each of the shuttle (Columbia, Challenger, Discovery, Atlantis, and Endeavor).
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): nasa (39), space (205), timelines (62)

In the Classroom

Challenge your students to use a site such as TimeRime reviewed here to create an interactive timeline of part or all of the space program. Assign your students to find online visuals (in the public domain) of certain aspects of the space shuttle program. Then have students create an online book of images and captions about their mission choice using Bookr (reviewed here). (Bookr uses Flickr images, so you must first upload or find the images on Flickr).

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Snag Learnng - Snagfilms LLC

Grades
3 to 12
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Use SnagLearning to present high-quality documentaries to promote meaningful discussions in your classroom. Find great videos about many issues of today such as nuclear tipping point,...more
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Use SnagLearning to present high-quality documentaries to promote meaningful discussions in your classroom. Find great videos about many issues of today such as nuclear tipping point, the history of various forms of music, effects of desert winds, and more. Choose your subject matter from the tab along the top. Choose a grade level band as well to find videos appropriate for different age groups. Warning: as topics frequently change, be sure to preview before you share.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): movies (65), twitter (50), video (254)

In the Classroom

Use videos in your subject area to inform students about the topic being studied. Share on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Consider using backchannel while viewing the documentary to allow students to express their feelings and thoughts. Try using the site "Get your students talking about what you want them to talk about" (reviewed here). Follow viewing with blog posts that include student reactions and topics related to what has been discussed in class.
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South American Cultures - Discovery Education

Grades
5 to 9
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At this site you will learn about festivals in South America and create charts and essays based on the research. There is a lesson plan complete with discussion questions, links ...more
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At this site you will learn about festivals in South America and create charts and essays based on the research. There is a lesson plan complete with discussion questions, links (one of which was not working at the time of this review), vocabulary WITH audio, and more. Classes with international students can draw on them for knowledge and cultural object contribution. A video is available for purchase to add to information about South America, but the lesson plan suggestions will work without it.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): cross cultural understanding (115), portuguese (18), south america (39), spanish (108)

In the Classroom

Use this when studying South American countries or at a time when Americans celebrate traditional rites, such as Thanksgiving. This site offers a great opportunity to make your Mexican and other Spanish speaking students feel valued in the classroom. This is an excellent site for research.

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Blackbaseball's Negro Baseball Leagues - Blackbaseball

Grades
6 to 12
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This new site focuses on the Negro Baseball Leagues from their beginnings in the late 19th century until the time that Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier in 1947. Much ...more
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This new site focuses on the Negro Baseball Leagues from their beginnings in the late 19th century until the time that Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier in 1947. Much of the content is the work of James A. Riley, one of the foremost experts in the study of the Negro Leagues. The site includes information on players, teams, video clips, resources and current issues.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): baseball (36), black history (59), civil rights (117), sports (97)

In the Classroom

Use the site as a resource during Black History Month for students who are researching the Negro Baseball Leagues, or players who were part of the leagues. Tie together current events (during baseball season) with this historical site. Have cooperative learning groups create venn diagrams using an online tool such as the Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here) to compare the Negro Baseball Leagues to the baseball teams of today. What was the same, what is different? The site might also be useful in discussions of the Civil Rights movement or as a part of a look at segregation in the early 20th century. Check back frequently, as the site is clearly expanding and will have more information in the future.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Colonial Gardener - Colonial Williamsburg

Grades
2 to 6
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Try your best to grow the beautiful gardens of Colonial Williamsburg! The more flowers you grow, the greater your point total. To grow beautiful flowers you need to hoe and ...more
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Try your best to grow the beautiful gardens of Colonial Williamsburg! The more flowers you grow, the greater your point total. To grow beautiful flowers you need to hoe and weed the gardens, the better you do, the more elaborate the garden. This activity is easy to follow, simply press on the x or z button to control the actions in the garden. Clicking on "more information" will give you information about the actual gardens and people of Colonial Williamsburg.

tag(s): colonial america (107), colonization (16), plants (145)

In the Classroom

Display and try the activity on the interactive whiteboard or projector during a unit on plants to demonstrate the growth and care of plants in a garden. During a unit on Colonial Times allow students to try this activity to see what it was like to do chores in the Colonial Days. This is a great one for a learning station and/or cooperative learning groups!
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A Colonial Tour from TeachersFirst - TeachersFirst

Grades
4 to 12
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Take a virtual tour of major colonial sites along the U.S. east coast using reviewed resources from TeachersFirst. If you are planning a real vacation or simply want to tour ...more
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Take a virtual tour of major colonial sites along the U.S. east coast using reviewed resources from TeachersFirst. If you are planning a real vacation or simply want to tour via computer, this collection offers information and places to see in Boston, Plymouth, Philadelphia, Williamsburg, Jamestown, Roanoke Colony, and St. Augustine.

tag(s): boston (14), colonial america (107), jamestown (11), philadelphia (13), roanoke (7), williamsburg (12)

In the Classroom

Use this colonial tour as a starting point for a virtual experience of colonial America. Assign different student groups to each colonial location, and have them create an extended virtual "tour" using a tool such as Google Earth, reviewed here, or (simpler) Mapskip, reviewed here. Then have the groups take each other's tours to "discover" the colonies! If you don't have enough time for an extended project, share aspects of the tour and supplement by sharing photos from Google Earth's Panoramio layer on your projector or interactive whiteboard.

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Old Radio World - OldRadioWorld.com

Grades
4 to 12
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Find a treasury of old radio shows from the 1930's, 1940's and 1950's. There are seven genres from which to choose (comedy, mystery, western, drama, etc..), and each genre has ...more
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Find a treasury of old radio shows from the 1930's, 1940's and 1950's. There are seven genres from which to choose (comedy, mystery, western, drama, etc..), and each genre has at least ten different old radio shows for your selection. There is a miscellaneous section that has such treasures as "Voices From History," "World War II News Broadcasts," and "Fireside Chat with Franklin D. Roosevelt." To listen to this program you will need to have QuickTime on your computer. Download of the mp3 files takes a while, so be patient.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): 1930s (15), 1940s (13), 1950s (12), listening (91), oral history (12), radio (26), world war 2 (142)

In the Classroom

As a class, listen to a couple of radio shows, taking note about the sound effects heard. Use your interactive whiteboard or projector to list the sounds. Have the class speculate about what objects could have created each sound. Post the radio site on your web page and assign the students to determine what household objects are responsible for the sounds for homework. Back in class the next day, use your interactive white board to share the student discoveries. From here it would be natural to have your students create a two or three minute radio show for a topic being studied in history or science. Students could also turn part of a short story into reader's theater (including sound effects) and record it as a radio broadcast. Use a site such as PodOmatic (reviewed here).

Another idea would be to introduce a unit on the 20th century, the Great Depression, or WWII or by having the class listen to a broadcast from that time period. Have them experience radio as it was, with everyone huddled around to listen (and no multitasking!).Talk about how the changes in entertainment formats have changed the way we interact in our homes.

To hone in on listening skills, you could create a worksheet with questions to answer, or have students take two column notes, asking questions about what they are hearing in the left column.

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Virtual Jamestown - Virtual Jamestown

Grades
6 to 12
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In commemoration of the 400th anniversary of the founding of Jamestown, this site offers a terrific set of resources on the Jamestown colony. Click on the map on this home ...more
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In commemoration of the 400th anniversary of the founding of Jamestown, this site offers a terrific set of resources on the Jamestown colony. Click on the map on this home page to see all the offerings. There are lesson plans, videos, animations, and searchable documents. A searchable database of indentured servant records brings students closer to the lives of real people who lived in early American colonies. A virtual view of the fort at Jamestown has much greater impact than a picture in a book, and it allows you to feel as though you are really there. One section of the site is devoted to the Native American perspective on the settlement of Jamestown; listen to Chesapeake Indians. Some of the other activities include viewing John Smith's voyage maps, browsing through real records of the Virginia Company at Jamestown, and reading the actual letters of major colonization participants from the latter 1500s and early 1600s. This site intends to be the one-stop shop for authentic Jamestown research.

tag(s): colonial america (107), colonization (16), india (36), jamestown (11)

In the Classroom

Spend a few minutes at this site, and you will be swept away to life on the James River 400 years ago. The zoomable maps and rotating views of Jamestown artifacts would be effective on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Plan a day to explore together or with partners to find out specifics about the colony. You will need to scroll down to the bottom of the main page and click on "Teaching Materials" to find several wonderful lesson plans on Jamestown. For teachers who want to bring authentic, first-hand accounts and records into the classroom, this site provides a wealth of actual documentation. We strongly suggest you use the Site Index to get the extensive view of this website's offerings.
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TeachersFirst Brain Twister - TeachersFirst

Grades
3 to 9
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These ten question quizzes, written by Thinking Teachers, change each Friday and are ready to go with one edition for middle school students and one for elementary students. The quiz...more
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These ten question quizzes, written by Thinking Teachers, change each Friday and are ready to go with one edition for middle school students and one for elementary students. The quiz presents ten questions, one at a time. You have only ONE try to pick the correct answer, so think carefully. You get points for each correct answer, totaling up to a possible 100. When you finish, you see your score and how long you spent. Questions are intended to stretch your thinking. Printable versions are available along with answers to the previous week's Twister. A new version of the Twister is mobile-friendly and adjusts to any screen size. Take the Twister with you wherever you go!

In the Classroom

Since elementary and middle school curriculum content varies from location to location, it is unlikely that every question will fall within the scope of your school's curriculum. High point questions may fall outside standard classroom fare. Five point questions tend to be at the knowledge/comprehension/application level of Bloom's taxonomy and closer to "normal" content. Ten pointers are more likely cross-curricular application/analysis, and twenty pointers require analytical thinking and a wider experience level, such as knowledge of current events or information beyond normal curricula. Twenty pointers may require more than one student's input.

Do the questions as a whole-class activity on a multimedia projector or interactive whiteboard with students contributing the portions of knowledge they do know toward solving the question. Using teamwork and thinking aloud can often help the group reach a conclusion that no single member could do on his/her own. They can each test different math answers to see which one is correct. This process will not only foster thinking aloud and group communication, but also model test-taking skills for multiple choice.

Alternatively, do the Twister in small groups, with one student an answer entry but others as researchers on neighboring computers to find out what the group does not know. It may be helpful to assign roles: moderator (assigns what to find out and helps the group reach consensus), keyboarder (enters responses, may conduct research in a new window), or researchers (find information as assigned). Use the Twisters to model ad teach information literacy skills in a high-motivation activity. Or offer the Twisters as an enrichment challenge or extra credit option for students to do at home. Ask parents to be on the honor system to sign a note indicating the score their child achieved. Since parents may be overly interested in helping, you may want to simply give extra credit for anyone completing the quiz, no matter the score. Be sure to mark this ready to go exclusive in your favorites and share it on your teacher class web page.

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The 50 States - TeachersFirst

Grades
4 to 8
17 Favorites 0  Comments
TeachersFirst's states project for students combines the usual "almanac" facts with narratives on native people, early history, economy, and landforms and geography. The result is a...more
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TeachersFirst's states project for students combines the usual "almanac" facts with narratives on native people, early history, economy, and landforms and geography. The result is a one-stop site for upper elementary and middle school students studying their own states, or someone else's. This project is more than "halfway" complete, and we are adding new states regularly.

tag(s): california (27), new york (26), states (162), texas (4)

In the Classroom

Use this site on a projector or interactive whiteboard to discuss and informally assess prior knowledge as you start your study of the 50 states. One easy use would be for testing students on knowledge of the capitols. Open the site on the interactive whiteboard or projector, and you can test students not only by state recognition on the map but with what the capitols are. State location and capitol information are not clearly stated until clicked on, so this would be a fairly easy formative assessment in review the information.

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TeachersFirst's Earthquake Resources - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This collection of reviewed resources from TeachersFirst is selected to help teachers and students understand how earthquakes happen and learn about famous earthquakes in history. Also...more
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This collection of reviewed resources from TeachersFirst is selected to help teachers and students understand how earthquakes happen and learn about famous earthquakes in history. Also included are sites and tools well suited for projects about earthquakes.

tag(s): earthquakes (48), plate tectonics (23)

In the Classroom

Share this collection as a Favorite on your TeachersFirst public page so students can use the resources as part of a project during your unit on plate tectonics or natural disasters. Use the collection as a starting point, noting the resources that are more challenging for your more able students.

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Important Dates and Events in History - Hisdates.com

Grades
6 to 12
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Find out what happened on any date in history with this informative site. Each event is listed with a short description. Historic events are listed chronologically from oldest to current...more
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Find out what happened on any date in history with this informative site. Each event is listed with a short description. Historic events are listed chronologically from oldest to current times. (Some dates are several pages long, be sure to click the "read more" link to continue to newer dates.) Information includes birthdays, discoveries, events, and more. Searches by specific years, months, and famous birthdays. You are able to add events and comments. Note that the general public can also add comments, so preview before projecting in class!
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): calendars (44), timelines (62)

In the Classroom

Use this site to display an interesting "this day in history" on your interactive whiteboard or projector each day. Use as a resource for students to research events during historical time periods being studied in class. Create a scavenger hunt to review dates in history - give students a list of events and have students find them on the calendar. For a more in=depth experience, share TeachersFirst's Dates That Matter, then have students create their own set of Dates That Matter style question prompts and provide a "Why Does it Matter" response for one of the events found here. Share their student-created Dates That Matter in PowerPoint slides or using an online presentation tool.

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