GradesK to 6
In the ClassroomMark this article in your Favorites and take the book suggestions with you to the library (or search for interlibrary loans) to help "fit" social studies into your read-alouds, making every minute count! Consider using them as part of a "Then and Now" or "Past and Present" focus in kindergarten or first grade, or with middle elementary students as part of a unit related to early settlements or the thirteen colonies. Be sure to look at the suggestions for connecting the read-alouds to CCSS-aligned writing prompts or for short, focused research projects to include as follow-up.
Grades1 to 12
This tool can be used as a basic bookmarking tool, simply allowing YOU to save, sort, and access your own bookmarks from ANY computer or mobile device (once you are logged in). You have the choice whether your bookmarks are public or private. You can gradually ease into more advanced and interactive features: highlight parts of sites and save or share those annotations, add sticky notes to parts of websites, pictures, screen-shots, documents, audio, and more. Do group collaborative research. Organize your bookmarks by tags. Unlike sorting bookmarks into file folders, adding tags permits you to put multiple tags or "labels" on one site. The same site you tag for book reports could also be tagged for biographies, for example. Aditional Diigo features include groups (a way to share and exchange bookmarks with a certain group of Diigo users), messaging, and search features. You can search all the public bookmarks made by others and discover other people with similar interests, already bookmarked and ready for you to mark as your own. There are many groups you can join, such as those with a specific teaching interest or hobby. See "Tools" for many helpful options, including bookmarklets to make bookmarking instant on multiple devices. Bookmarklets drag directly to the toolbars on your computer and are well worth it. It goes beyond simple bookmarking and adds options like highlight, capture, send, read later, comment, search bar and Diigo message options. You decide your own level of use and desired tools to be shown on the bar. If choosing not to install the toolbar, then there is an applet called Diigolet that will be used in its place. It is not as strong a tool as the toolbar, but will work well if the toolbar installation is not possible. Check our sample group. You can also install a widget on your blog (or class web page) that will show your bookmarks there.
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In the ClassroomTeachers even in very early grades can use Diigo simply to share links with students and parents. To get more ideas on the potential education uses of this site, see this SlideShare powerpoint here. Use this tool easily in your Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) classroom since all students will be able to access it for free, no matter what device they have.
Assign students a research topic and allow them to use Diigo collaboratively to collect and share resources. Share teacher-selected options (complete with comments or directions) easily using Diigo. The research and conversations created through highlighting and annotating what they read can greatly enhance both their research skills and their online interaction on academic level skills. Or use Diigo to post discussion assignments on specific articles or even parts of articles using the highlighting tool. Find a relevant article for your subject, highlight the part that you want students to read. (If students are younger, keep it short to reduce the intimidating reality of too much information for kids.) Attach a sticky note with a discussion question for the students. Have them comment on the link in a "class discussion" as a homework assignment. If you are fortunate enough to have all students with computer access in your class and at home, such as in one to one laptop program schools, you can organize many assignments using Diigo. Use this site to help all of your students stay organized. Share this resource with your (not so organized) gifted students to help them manage projects and not "lose" the information they "found somewhere." Post assignments, readings, online interactive labs, and more. The site even allows students to submit responses by adding a comment. Of course others will see what they said, so you may not want the comments to be the only thing they do! If you assign gifted students to do projects beyond the regular curriculum, consider having them curate and annotate a collection of resources on a higher level topic. For example, extend your study of World War II by having them collect web-based primary sources showing the propaganda leading up to the war, political cartoons during the war, and advertisements from the time. Have them annotate the collection explaining each artifact and how it reflects the sentiments and biases of certain groups. That same collection could provide other students a class opportunity to interact with "objects" from the time. If you have contact with other teachers of gifted students, they could collaborate across different schools or classrooms.
Includes an education-only area for teachers and students
Parent permission advised before posting student work created using this tool
Includes social features, such as "friends," comments, ratings by others
Requires registration/log-in (WITH email)
Products can be embedded
Products can be shared by URL
Multiple users can collaborate on the same project
Includes teacher tools for registering and/or monitoring students
Grades2 to 8
In the ClassroomBookmark this site and combine it with TeachersFirst's CurriConnects leveled reading list forColonial America and the Revolution and Frontier Forts on the American Revolution for multiple offerings and angles on the Colonial and Revolutionary time period. Create a link to various activities, quizzes, and downloadables for students to explore on classroom computers. Include crafts and recipes from the site during your unit. Have students create an annotated image about Colonial times including text boxes and related links using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here to demonstrate concepts learned when making crafts or recipes. Use an online tool such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here) to compare Colonial life to present day. Have students create timelines (with music, photos, videos, and more) using Capzles (reviewed here). Have students use Fakebook (reviewed here) to create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook about a student their age living in Colonial America.
Grades2 to 7
In the ClassroomBe sure to include Meet the Daggetts with your Colonial America unit. View together on your interactive whiteboard or projector or have students explore independently on classroom computers. Have students create an online or printed comic depicting a day in the life of the Daggett family using one of the tools and ideas included in this collection. Use an online tool such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here) to compare Colonial to modern times. Have students use Fakebook (reviewed here) to create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook about a Daggett family member.
Grades4 to 12
tag(s): 1900s (35), aircraft (24), american flag (11), american revolution (86), artists (75), bill of rights (28), civil rights (117), civil war (145), colonial america (107), flags (22), industrial revolution (25), kennedy (27), lincoln (86), martin luther king (37), native americans (78), pearl harbor (12), railroads (11), slavery (72), space (207), thanksgiving (36), underground railroad (11), war of 1812 (15), world war 1 (54), world war 2 (142)
In the ClassroomMark this one in your favorites for use with almost any history unit. Your visual learners will find history more understandable using the video and interactive options. Have students create a word cloud of the important terms they learn from this site using a tool such as Wordle (reviewed here), Tagxedo (reviewed here), or WordItOut (reviewed here). Share links to specific videos on your class website or blog for students to view at home. Have students create timelines (with music, photos, videos, and more) using Capzles (reviewed here). Have students use Fakebook (reviewed here) to create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook about a person in a video.
Grades4 to 12
In the ClassroomThis site is perfect for your projector or interactive whiteboard. Studying the Battle of Gettysburg? Access a photograph of Abraham Lincoln delivering the Gettysburg Address simply by searching for Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. Wondering what your town or state looked like 50 or 100 years ago? See what images have been uploaded for places near you. Taking a field trip? Compare the "Then/Now" views and find the actual spot the photograph was taken and from what vantage point. Wondering what a famous person in history saw when she looked out her window or travelled around her town? Check to see what Sepia Town images are available for that time period or geographic area. How have cities grown and changed over the past 100 years? What factors lead to those changes? What do you see in the images that you would not see today? A horse drawn delivery truck? What don't you see? Power lines? Sepia Town is one of those sites that can simply be enjoyed by accessing random views and using those images as a platform for discussion or discovery. Be sure to include this when learning about local or state history! Ask students to explore and list the changes they find to bring back and share with the class. Students can take screenshots of the same site at two different time periods and put them onto a presentation slide they can explain orally or put them on a class wiki along with an explanation of how and why things have changed.
Grades2 to 8
In the ClassroomSeveral games require significant reading, so partner weaker and stronger readers if students work independently. Create a link to specific games on classroom computers as a center to use on President's Day, Constitution Day, or any class day studying U.S. Government. If studying your state's laws, use an online tool such as the Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram, reviewed here, to compare and contrast differences between your state and Texas.
Grades4 to 12
In the ClassroomIn the classroom, integrate primary documents in addition to your text to get a broader picture of history, even if you are not teaching specifically about Florida. Take a closer look at history, through the multiple aspects of video, audio, laws, and land grants. Look at perspectives of Civil War from a southern state. Make biographies of Florida residents come alive with the culture of their time. Compare and contrast Florida and another state. Use an online tool such as the Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here). Examine the history of space through NASA. You and your students can discover how Civil Rights progressed in Florida. Look at the history of the Seminole tribe as you study native Americans. Challenge students to create an infographic using Easel.ly, reviewed here, or Venngage, reviewed here, about a certain period in Florida's history or to compare Florida and other states. Before beginning the infographic, have students brainstorm or collect ideas on a collaborative bulletin board like Scrumblr reviewed here (quick start- no membership required!). Use this resource to meet Common Core standards about primary sources or writing. Challenge students to produce digital writing and interact with others online.
Grades4 to 12
tag(s): advertising (33), african american (113), architecture (83), branches of government (48), cities (25), conservation (128), cultures (105), environment (317), immigration (58), industrialization (15), literature (275), maps (288), native americans (78), north america (19), presidents (130), religions (62), sports (97), women (101)
In the ClassroomUse American Memory in your study of either state, or United States history providing further primary and secondary resources to bring life into your subject matter. Discover point of view or popular opinion found in the collections. Use on your interactive whiteboard with the class, or even as a resource on projects to give a personal reference. Combine with literature for understanding of a place or time in American history. Look at the year of birth for your students to compare and contrast for today. Use as an example for your year of learning in your subject area or even grade level. Be sure to list as a resource on student computers or your class website.
Grades4 to 12
In the ClassroomOld Florida maps are a perfect secondary source for your study on the state of Florida, or even map skills. Investigate the changes through time or how the land is affected by government. Be sure to integrate to include the Common Core standard of primary and secondary sources.
Grades1 to 12
Download lessons, Resource Packs, and Podcasts. Be sure to check out the extensive section for students including games, study skill tips and advice, and information on using primary sources. Learn about important people, government officials, and heroes of the past and present such as Charles Dickens and Florence Nightingale. Explore and research famous events/times such as American Civil Rights Movement or Life During War Times. The site was created in the UK, so some of the pronunciations and spellings may differ from American English.
In the ClassroomKeep this site in mind as an easy place to find games and lessons related to British history (and even some world history topics). Use this site as an anticipatory set or "activator" to introduce a unit or lesson on a projector or interactive whiteboard. Present the same time period, such as World War II, from a British and American point of view using this site and similar primary source images from U.S. collections like this one or this one. Have students create timelines (with music, photos, videos, and more) using Capzles (reviewed here). Have students use Fakebook (reviewed here) to create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook about a British resident during any time periods involved with these activities. Take advantage of the ready to go lesson plans, interactives, podcasts, and videos. Literature teachers will also want to explore and share the information about British authors.
Grades3 to 12
In the ClassroomUse Next Exit History for either primary or secondary information on any location for social studies, history, or even literature study. Use this tool as an example for a multimedia presentation or map drawing of state history or study about any geographic location. After reading The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Springs by Betty Birney, discover the wonders of your school, community, or state. Plan culminating projects where students create their own Google Earth Map (reviewed here). Create placemarker guides to your community using Next Exit History as an example. Be sure to share this link on your class website for instant reference.
Grades2 to 12
tag(s): advertising (33), black history (59), cross cultural understanding (115), history day (23), immigration (58), journalism (50), lincoln (86), martin luther king (37), poetry (228), presidents (130), primary sources (86), professional development (124), roosevelt (16), slavery (72), writing prompts (93)
In the ClassroomTake a look at the free professional development for using primary sources for teachers. In the Archives for Connecting to the Common Core, there are writing prompts for K-5 plus a link to the triangle activity. Download and use the PDF for the Thinking Triangle. Have older students research an interest and report to the class using a tool like Zoho Show (similar to PowerPoint, but easier and free) reviewed here.
Grades4 to 12
In the ClassroomClick on "In the Classroom" to find activities for each artifact for elementary, middle school, and high school. Personalize Abe Lincoln for your students by sharing some of the artifacts on your interactive whiteboard. Have students explore this site independently or in small groups. Students can then create a word cloud of the important terms they learn using a tool such as Wordle (reviewed here), Tagxedo (reviewed here), or WordItOut (reviewed here). Use ideas from Engaging Students With Primary Sources reviewed here to help high school students analyze primary source documents they find on Under Lincoln's Hat.
Grades2 to 10
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tag(s): native americans (78)
In the ClassroomExplore the Seminole Tribe through the online collections and museums. Use the sources as primary and secondary to supplement other class materials. Use the Seminole Tribe to compare and contrast the native American tribes found in your area. Explore the Seminole Tribe in your unit on Civil Rights. Use this site to discover the leadership that lead to the Seminole Tribe of today. Be sure to begin your study with an anticipation guide. End your unit with a post assessment dispelling the myths in the anticipation guide.
Grades4 to 10
tag(s): news (260)
In the ClassroomUse this site as a resource for current events. The reading level of the stories is generally upper elementary, but the topics are of interest through high school. These short articles would be great for practice with informational texts. Keep this site as part of a list for students to access, including weaker readers and ESL/ELL students who can use the videos to aid understanding. Have students research whats going on via this news site, and present a small presentation at the beginning of class. Students can either present orally or, for the technologically inclined, create a short video summarizing the same information. Consider using a bookmark site such as Diigo, reviewed here, to share newsworthy items that correlate with your class curriculum.
GradesK to 3
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In the ClassroomIntroduce Mighty Book on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Use this site for learning as a whole group, learning centers, or individual laptops for reinforcement or enrichment. Since there are extensive ads, you may want to bookmark or create shortcuts directly to the activity you want children to use and avoid having them get "lost" in the many links that take you off the site. Share the songs and discuss the lyrics and what they are teaching. Use this site in art class to introduce famous artists to even the youngest of learners. After listening to the jokes, have students make up their own jokes. Poems with activities offer a kinesthetic approach to poetry. Songs about colors and the days of the week catch your auditory learners. Share this link on your class website for students to explore (and enjoy) both in and out of the classroom.
Grades4 to 12
tag(s): 1600s (12), american revolution (86), civil war (145), colonization (16), great depression (24), industrial revolution (25), literacy (106), native americans (78), westward expansion (29), world war 2 (142)