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Scene at the Signing of the Constitution of the United States - Teaching American History

Grades
6 to 12
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Students are ordinarily much more familiar with the signing of the Declaration of Independence than the signing of the Constitution, even though the signing of the Constitution may...more
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Students are ordinarily much more familiar with the signing of the Declaration of Independence than the signing of the Constitution, even though the signing of the Constitution may arguably be the more important event. A painting by Howard Chandler Christy documents the event, and this site provides an interactive look at the characters depicted in the painting. There is also a link to more information about the painting, which is one of the most historically accurate paintings of the founding of our country, despite the fact that it does not actually depict all of the signers. A number of other resource links may be worth pursuing for further information.

tag(s): constitution (79)

In the Classroom

A great resource for the interactive whiteboard or projector, although be aware that you may need to disable your pop-up blocker to get the information to display properly. Challenge students to find other paintings depicting famous events in United States (or another country). Have cooperative learning groups create multimedia presentation about the paintings. Create fictitious blog entries from one character in a painting to another character within another painting at another famous event. What would John F. Kennedy write to Benjamin Franklin?
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Mesopotamia-The British Museum - The British Museum

Grades
6 to 12
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The British Museum presents this visually stunning site about the "cradle of civilization," Mesopotamia. Approach your study from one of several perspectives: geography, time, gods...more
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The British Museum presents this visually stunning site about the "cradle of civilization," Mesopotamia. Approach your study from one of several perspectives: geography, time, gods and goddesses, or writing. Each module has information, some extension narrative, and a challenge game (with requires Shockwave). For teachers, the best part is the Staffroom section which offers step by step information about using the site in the classroom. Start there to quickly discover how you can best use this resource.

tag(s): architecture (84), mesopotamia (6), middle east (30), writing (359)

In the Classroom

An interactive whiteboard or projector will take advantage of the strong visual impact of this site, but it will also be useful for individual exploration by students either in a computer cluster or from home. Students can try the "challenge" games as an extension, or for those who finish other work quickly. Bookmark the site (or save in favorites) for independent research.

Challenge students to research a various portion of this site and create a multimedia presentation (either independently or in cooperative learning groups.) How about having students use a tool such as Woices (beta) (reviewed here). This site allows students to create audio recordings AND choose a location (on a map) where the story takes place. Challenge students to narrate while the exact location is shown on a map! What a fabulous way to link history, geography, and presentation skills!
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Box Templates - Paperandmore

Grades
1 to 8
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This site offers nine templates to make a variety of shaped boxes from folded card stock or paper. Create a pyramid, hexagonal, matchbox, takeout, trapezoid, flap, candy, bon-bon, or...more
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This site offers nine templates to make a variety of shaped boxes from folded card stock or paper. Create a pyramid, hexagonal, matchbox, takeout, trapezoid, flap, candy, bon-bon, or puffy box with these printable templates and directions.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): angles (88), area (66), crafts (41), geometric shapes (163), holidays (147), perimeter (32), printables (38), volume (45)

In the Classroom

Teach volume, area and perimeter while also creating useful gift boxes for holiday presents. This site will provide opportunities for visual spatial learners to learn mathematical principles about 2D and 3D figures, lines, angles, and planes. Download and print out the free templates onto vellum or card stock paper. Take advantage of the site's online directions and allow students to work on it in pairs so they can easily assist each other. Save this site in your favorites on classroom computers so students can practice paper folding independently. As a clever review activity for almost any curriculum topic, have students make and decorate a box, such as "secrets of the solar system" or "favorite vocabulary words" box, filling it with slips of paper with terms to define or explain. The decorations can be hints or images to fit the topic. Have student trade boxes to review.
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Bookemon - Bookemon, Inc.

Grades
K to 12
42 Favorites 1  Comments
 
Write your own original books, add images and artwork as illustrations, and read your published books in interactive, online form. There is no fee for the online publication and sharing....more
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Write your own original books, add images and artwork as illustrations, and read your published books in interactive, online form. There is no fee for the online publication and sharing. This is the ultimate in "digital storytelling." Click "Explore" to browse many "public" examples on the templates page of books created by others. Take advantage of the free apps that make Bookemon even easier to use with any device! Use Bookemon Reader to READ books you created in Bookemon or Bookemon edCenter (available for both iOS and Android). BookPress for iOS devices only allows you to CREATE books from scratch, including using photos from your iPad/iPhone. InstaPress (for iOS only) offers options to make books from documents, pdfs, etc. to be shared on mobile devices as eBooks. Here is an example of a book created by the TeachersFirst Edge editors. Once you set up free membership in this site, students (or teachers) can select to create from a blank start or using templates provided. You can also create a book starter of your own as an example so students can follow the prompts you have created. The book creator allows you to upload your own images and to create books from a Word document or PowerPoint file you have already made. EdCenter users can collaborate on books.

After you save and publish the work, share the URL so people can read the entire thing online, either among an audience of "just my friends" or publicly. They also offer the embed code to place your books in a class or school web page, wiki, or blog. The easiest option is to copy the address of the new window displaying the interactive book. There is an option to have the book printed for a fee, but this is not required. You can also read books created by others (if they make them public). Use the fully-public option to create learning materials for classes to access year to year for at-home review or reading practice.

This site requires a simple registration. Teachers can set up an edCenter for their school or class in accordance with school policies. See more detailed suggestions "In the Classroom" below and in our sample book! Newer mobile device options include players to view your books on iPads and more.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): creative writing (166), digital storytelling (144), writing (359)

In the Classroom

SKIP the profile and friends areas to get to the book creator to play with the tools a bit. Before you get too involved, create an edCenter to minimize advertising and create books in your own teacher-friendly class environment. Use the edCenter to register students and establish privacy settings for your class. No student emails are required.

On the Create Books page, choose from using a blank book, starting from a file, or using a template. Choose "school" to see projects from other classes or a sample created by you or a student team working in advance along with you. Explore ready-made themes (seasonal, topical, etc.) or use "open theme." Choose book dimensions (match layout shape to any uploaded files, such as PowerPoint slides). Enter settings and description of your book (editable later), including who is allowed to "see" it: everyone, just friends, or private. Again choose a "theme" - more of a category where Bookemon will list your completed book. A logical option is "school." Experiment with tools to upload files (within file limits), add images, add text, etc. Written help is offered as you go, but there is no video demo. SAVE often. Turn margins on to avoid chopping content. To share the book, you must "publish" it (i.e. finalize).

Once published, locate the book under "My Books" and use options to share (by email--and see the URL to copy from there), "Make a new edition" to create a new version--also useful for treating the original as a template for later books), Post to Other Sites offers embed codes. The BEST option is to click the book COVER which opens a new window without ads or "stuff," and copy the ADDRESS of that window to paste into email, etc. You can also mark that clean window view as a Favorite on a classroom computer!

Use your edCenter settings to manage social networking features. This will avoid the "public" Bookemon features such as opportunities to share address books, use social tools such as Facebook to share your books, etc. Teacher-controlled edCenter accounts are probably the easiest option for managing within school policies.

With younger students, have them begin their work in PowerPoint then upload for whole-class books. See an example, created by the TeachersFirst Edge editors . The example is full of ideas for classroom use from Kindergarten to high school, including science concept tales, poetry books, general writing, math problem solve-its, and more. ANY grade can use this tool, depending on the amount of direction by the teacher. (By the way, the correct answer to the problem in the sample book is c. 27.) Another idea: have students create personalized books for their parents or grandparents for special occasions (Mother's Day, Father's Day, or Grandparent's Day).

Use the mobile device features offered in your BYOD classroom to make and share books, PDF's, and more. Tip: Use this site for a guided introduction to social networking as a class, an excellent teaching opportunity for digital citizenship in the context of a project.

This is one of the best creative tools for gifted students to go above and beyond regular curriculum. Don't let the "juvenile" appearance fool you. Even older students can write and include images to create and share books of any length. Any independent research or writing project can become an interactive book. Even advanced science experiments and lab reports can be shared online using this tool. Once you have one book, you can use that as a template for others. Inspire your gifted students to create literary magazine or even a personal online "portfolio" of writing, artwork, or photography presented in interactive book form.

Comments

This is one of my all time favorite creative tools. Very versatile. Great for making "buddy books" or for teacher-created learning "books." Make one as a whole class to summarize a science unit in primary grades. I even use it personally to make fee online "gifts" for children I know. I did purchase one print version, and it looked great. Thinking, PA, Grades: 5 - 10

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Cycles vs. Checklists: Fostering Creative Process in an Accountability World - TeachersFirst/Candace Hackett Shively

Grades
6 to 12
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Accountability for curriculum creates a tug-of-war with creativity in the data-driven world of education. Find ideas and examples for respecting and incorporating students' creative...more
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Accountability for curriculum creates a tug-of-war with creativity in the data-driven world of education. Find ideas and examples for respecting and incorporating students' creative process as an overlay to even the most restrictive curriculum in these pages, originally part of a presentation by Candace Hackett Shively at the ISTE 2011 conference. Take a high-level look at what theorists and practicing "creative people" say about creative process, and find practical ways to make that process a habit in your classroom. Download customizable assignments and rubrics as examples to use with middle and high school students. This resource is a "macro" overview of creative process, companion to the "micro" (skills based) analysis offered in our Dimensions of Creativity pages.

tag(s): creativity (109)

In the Classroom

Teachers in any subject will find ideas for fostering creativity in their classroom, especially with students developmentally ready to talk about their own creative process (usually middle school and up). Make this professional information a discussion item among your teaching peers and with parents. Share it with colleagues for an informal inservice session. Use the many resources to help students discover their own creative process just as you would help them discover their learning styles. Make creative process a habit in your class assignments through electronic idea bins and more.

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Hands Off, Vanna! Giving Students Control of Interactive Whiteboard (IWB) Learning - TeachersFirst/Candace Hackett Shively

Grades
K to 12
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If you have an IWB, use it well. These pages, filled with practical ideas and examples for student-directed use of the interactive whiteboard as a collaborative learning space, originally...more
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If you have an IWB, use it well. These pages, filled with practical ideas and examples for student-directed use of the interactive whiteboard as a collaborative learning space, originally accompanied a presentation by Candace Hackett Shively at the ISTE 2011 conference. Find specific ideas and web tools for making the IWB a student tool and avoiding the trap of being a teacher-Vanna (or Vance). See examples and classroom management tips to share this kinesthetic learning tool among students and leverage its capabilities in student-centered activities. The presentation is brand-agnostic, though some of the examples use SMART brand software (viewable with SMART Notebook Express, a free online tool, reviewed here). There are downloadable handouts and files along with the many suggestions.

tag(s): iwb (31)

In the Classroom

Teachers in any subject and grade level will find ideas for IWB learning in their classroom. Make this professional information a self-guided tour to improve your use of a new or existing IWB. Share it with colleagues for an informal inservice session. Everything is here for you to explore and learn. If you are in charge of leading professional development about IWBs, this new perspective on student-centered use will send Vanna packing and inspire many new avenues for learning.
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Fun Photo Box - FunPhotoBox

Grades
K to 12
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Create amazing photo effects, animations, magazine covers, and more with this free site. Choose the effect, upload a picture, and save to your computer for use anywhere. Ads appear...more
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Create amazing photo effects, animations, magazine covers, and more with this free site. Choose the effect, upload a picture, and save to your computer for use anywhere. Ads appear throughout this site. Be sure to warn students to only use the tabs along the top and choose the photo effects under each tab.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): animation (63), images (266), photography (160)

In the Classroom

Users need to be able to find and upload a photo on their computer or find the direct URL of an image on the Internet. Younger students would need a lot of assistance navigating this site. Adjust the picture using the easy to use tools (experiment to master them). Once the effect has been applied, you need to know where you are saving the picture and how to give it a meaningful file name to be found later. Be sure to check district policy about using student pictures, though the web site does not "keep" them. If using pictures from the Internet, be sure to discuss copyright issues and approve pictures that students use. Use these fun photo effects for creating interesting pictures for About Me information on blog and other sites. Use for pictures of lab events in science. These pictures can be incorporated into presentations or other multimedia products using online tools or PowerPoint. Students can dress as a historical figure, take and upload a picture, and use in classroom projects. Have students narrate their creative images using Thinklink, reviewed here.
 
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ArtRage 2.6 Starter Edition - Ambient Design

Grades
3 to 10
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Traditional art media become digital with the free ArtRage 2.6 Starter Edition paint program. Pencil, chalk, paint and marker tools smear, smudge, blend,and flow just like real art...more
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Traditional art media become digital with the free ArtRage 2.6 Starter Edition paint program. Pencil, chalk, paint and marker tools smear, smudge, blend,and flow just like real art materials. You and your students can paint with thinned oils, use wet or dry markers, soften the pencil and control the hardness of the crayon, and much more. Scroll down the page to find the FREE 2.6 Starter download instead of the 30 day free trial of ArtRage 3.0.

tag(s): graphic design (35), photography (160)

In the Classroom

ArtRage 2.6 Starter Edition can be downloaded and installed on machines running Windows 7, Vista, XP, 2000, and Macintosh OS X 10.3.9 or later. Check with your IT department or administrator for download and installation approval and help (if needed). ONly the need to download and install pushes this tool to the "Edge."

The ArtRage 2.6 interface is simple and intuitive, with large icons which clearly identify tools and options. While the program has a user guide and the website offers a quick start tutorial plus several technique-specific tutorials, fifteen minutes of clicking on icons, exploring the menus and playing with tools will give you a good start creating works of art. Teachers and students who are familiar with standard paint programs included in Windows and Mac machines will quickly grasp the basics and enjoy exploring the artistic possibilities of ArtRage 2.6. The program supports English, French or German language labels on tools and menus.

Be sure to ask student "experts" to demonstrate the ArtRAge tools on your interactive whiteboard. Students can use ArtRage 2.6 to create illustrations, drawings and paintings for storybooks, book reviews and author posters in English or language arts activities. Math and science concepts can be explained through illustrative drawings, such as a diagram of a flower's parts or the steps in oxidation. Make visual representations of mathematical operations or concepts such as fractions. Have ELL or foreign language students import images into ArtRage 2.6, trace and color them to create unique vocabulary cards and posters illustrating new words. Recognize and celebrate your students by importing their digital photos and applying textures and effects to create special birthday cards, awards, bulletin board pictures, and desktop signs. Share students' curriculum-related digital art projects on your class web page, blogs, or wiki (with parent permission) as well as your bulletin board. There are no safety concerns with this program because it is locally installed and does not involve interaction with the "general public" or social networking.

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Dimensions of Creativity: A Model to Analyze Student Projects - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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These pages, sparked by a presentation by TeachersFirst's own Candace Hackett Shively, provide a way to plan and conduct curriculum projects to build creativity skills along with curriculum...more
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These pages, sparked by a presentation by TeachersFirst's own Candace Hackett Shively, provide a way to plan and conduct curriculum projects to build creativity skills along with curriculum concepts. Using the lens of Guilford's model of divergent thinking: fluency, flexibility, originality, and elaboration (FFOE for short), teachers and students have a shared vocabulary and specific creativity skills to evaluate and develop. Find specific ways to differentiate for varied student creativity skills while creating curriculum projects using free web 2.0 tools. The pages include the "Prezi" visual presentation from ISTE 2010 about this model (no audio, just the visuals). These pages provide explanations and, most importantly, practical ways to look at the projects that teachers plan and the products that students produce so they can continue to build FFOE skills as part of any grade level or curriculum. Customizable rubrics make implementation easier at any grade level.

tag(s): creativity (109)

In the Classroom

Do more than simply tell your students to "be creative." Try the ideas and practical suggestions on these pages if you ask: How do I help students who struggle with "being creative" in project-based learning? How do I differentiate tools/projects to match students' varied creativity skills? How do I know that more "creative" students are moving forward, challenging their creative thinking and not simply using past "tried and true" ideas, wrapped in a little glitz? How do my students and I talk about the creativity skills they used (or did not use) in making a project?

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Imgur - Imgur

Grades
K to 12
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Looking for easier ways to share images? Pronounced "Imager," this site is easy to use. Use the super-simple photo-sharing site to upload photos or insert image URL addresses. Click...more
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Looking for easier ways to share images? Pronounced "Imager," this site is easy to use. Use the super-simple photo-sharing site to upload photos or insert image URL addresses. Click the upload button or enter the URL of the image from the Internet (obtainable by right clicking the online image and selecting "properties" or "Get info"). No need to register for an account. Uploaded images are private and only the person who uploaded has the URL of the image. Use the simple editing options to be sure the image fits in the blog, wiki, or site you are using it on. File upload is limited to 2 MB. Use a direct link or embed code to share your uploaded image wherever you need.

tag(s): images (266), photography (160)

In the Classroom

Use in the classroom to quickly upload and share images. Create albums where individual photos can be titled or captioned. Have students categorize photos and describe them. Use for any project, class explanation of concepts, experiments, or demonstrations. Share pictures of class happenings, speakers, field trips, and other opportunities you would want to share.

Users must be able to find a suitable image for upload from their computer or the Internet. Follow the very simple directions to manipulate the image. Since no registration is necessary, Imgur is easy and safe to use. Be aware that relying on services such as these can be a problem if the site no longer exists in the future. Be sure that students understand rules for sharing appropriate and inappropriate images and copyright concerns.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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SlideShare - SlideShare, Inc.

Grades
K to 12
3 Favorites 0  Comments
   
Have no fear, SlideShare is here! Whether you consider yourself techno phobic or ultra savvy, this site offers something for every level of user. This site hosts tons of prefabricated...more
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Have no fear, SlideShare is here! Whether you consider yourself techno phobic or ultra savvy, this site offers something for every level of user. This site hosts tons of prefabricated slide shows or Power Point presentations, and considers itself the largest presentation sharing website available. As educators, we know the value of professional borrowing and this site puts slide show resources for any content area right at your fingertips. For the more daring, upload your own slide presentation creations. Once posted, you can see how many people have viewed your show. View comments left by people who have viewed your show to gain feedback and participate in educational discussion. Shows can be embedded in blogs, social networking sites, or downloaded to your computer (Where - YES! You can edit it to suit your specific needs!) This is not a slide show creation tool, but rather a sharing resource for educators and civilians alike.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): images (266), photography (160), slides (63)

In the Classroom

Pull published slide shows for use in your classroom. Download a slide show as a template and modify it for your specific needs. In science class, have students record each other completing a lab activity. Then have the students put that footage into a slide show with snapshots of work and products of the lab. Have students create a voice over track and sync it using the slidecast part of the site. It would make for a powerful learning experience. Post slide shows of class notes and have students comment on what they understand or do not understand as an online discussion. If you teach online through cyberschool or virtual learning programs, use slidecast to create "teaching tracks" to go with your notes. It allows you to create a short, but helpful lecture for your distance learners. They will appreciated the verbal aspect of the learning.

This website allows you to upload, so you will need a basic understanding of where your files are located on your computer to do this. However, you are not required as a member to upload anything unless you want to do so. An interesting and valuable feature of this site is that it will allow you to sync audio files or podcasts with your slide show, creating what the website has coined a slidecast. You can create groups to share slideshows privately to only your group members.

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Storybird - Storybird Inc.

Grades
K to 8
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Write your own story or collaborate and create a story using pictures, themes, and other prompts generated by the site. Students and families also can view stories created by others....more
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Write your own story or collaborate and create a story using pictures, themes, and other prompts generated by the site. Students and families also can view stories created by others. The final story is available for sharing via URL or email (or keeping private) and printing it is an option. Basically, write text and titles, create a book cover, add graphics, and pass the product to a co-writer (if collaborating) who adds more until both feel the story is complete. A demo video explains the basics. A special section for artists encourages art contributions and explains how to use the art to enhance the stories. an Education area provides a way for teachers to set up accounts for a class with or without student email. If your district blocks YouTube, the video may not be viewable. You could always view the video at home and bring it to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid, reviewed here, to download the video from YouTube.

tag(s): stories and storytelling (33), writing (359), writing prompts (92)

In the Classroom

Have pairs of students create a story by working collaboratively after you have explained and demonstrated the basics. Encourage your older students to use this tool for projects created in response to research or extra study. This is a great find for gifted students who want to include art work and use their creativity in productive ways. ESL/ELL students can use the site to recreate folk tales and recreations from their home countries.

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Drop Event - dropevent.com

Grades
K to 12
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This fabulous site allows you to post and share photos related to a certain event with others. Create an "event" and share the link for others to upload photos. Only ...more
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This fabulous site allows you to post and share photos related to a certain event with others. Create an "event" and share the link for others to upload photos. Only the creator of the event must register on the site. All others upload without registering. Email photos to the event site as well. Set permissions for instant sharing or moderate pictures before they show on the Drop Event site. Choose to make your event public or private. Note: If public, it will show up in Drop Event searches and be visible to others. When you create your event, answer questions to create your free account. Note: Most recent events appear on the main page of this site. Be sure to check for appropriate content before showing to students. Consider directing students to the URL of the actual event page.

tag(s): images (266), photography (160)

In the Classroom

This site is great for students to upload photos from field trips or other events. Keep track of project accomplishments by uploading pictures of the process. Have a class project such as DNA models or types of plants? Get them out of the classroom by taking pictures and uploading them to Drop Event. Make a collection for local history or photos of lab results during a bridge-building or pumpkin seed counting activity. Collect images that students can then use in Thinglink, reviewed here, "lab reports" about their discoveries. Place the link to the event page you have created and invite parents to view the creations. Take snapshots to create a Day In The Life event for your classroom. What better way to share memories! Have parent volunteers? Have them upload their pictures too! Whatever project or event you have, sharing and collaborating with Drop Event is easy and fun!

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Bitstrips - Core Matrix

Grades
3 to 12
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Bitstrips lets you create comics. You will also find comics to read or remix, created by others in the Bitstrips community. Create professional-looking comics in minutes. Choose the...more
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Bitstrips lets you create comics. You will also find comics to read or remix, created by others in the Bitstrips community. Create professional-looking comics in minutes. Choose the number of panels, type of characters, style of speech bubble, and various props and settings. Several actions are available: clicking and dragging the items to go into the comic strip, typing dialog into the bubbles, scaling items in the frame, rotating items, and more. There is a "Bitstrips for Schools" link; this feature does offer a 30-day free trial, however it is fee-based after 30-days.

tag(s): comics and cartoons (74)

In the Classroom

Have small groups of students each create one panel as a summary of something you just read in class. Use comics in math and turn a word problem into a comic strip/cartoon. In social studies create a comic strip/cartoon about a historic event, person, place, or speech. In language arts take a novel or non-fiction book and create a comic strip/cartoon about the characters and plot. You can also have your students write summaries of current events or responses to reading assignments. With younger students, use an interactive whiteboard or projector to create a class comic on a current topic of study, such as the different parts of a plant or the planets.

Register and play with the simple tools to choose how many frames, settings, people, dialog bubbles, and props. Save your work to come back later or you may "publish" right away. You have a choice about whether others are allowed to view and "remix" your work. You also have the option to edit work or embed it in a website, blog e-mail or wiki. It would be wise to preview whatever you wish to share with your students since the general public can create comics with their own ideas. Students should submit their work without identifiable names and location, according to your school policy, (since you own the master account).

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Zooburst - zooburst.com

Grades
K to 12
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Create a 3D digital pop-up book that can be seen without the 3D movie glasses. Be sure to check out the Gallery to view great examples. Use ZooBurst's editing tools ...more
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Create a 3D digital pop-up book that can be seen without the 3D movie glasses. Be sure to check out the Gallery to view great examples. Use ZooBurst's editing tools with public domain (or Creative Commons) pictures or clipart to create your book. Create an account, choose a title, and read their instructions. Take your idea, manipulate with the simple to use tools, and add text, images, and animation. Edit the angle of the pop-up, speed of the pop-up, and even view your creation from a variety of angles. Use the left side panel to search the web for an image by simply entering a search term. Upload a picture from your computer easily. Click on the picture to add to your book. Drag and drop these elements into various positions in the book. Use the right side panel to change size, rotation, and color of the images. Add a chat bubble to the pictures and fill with text. Use the text box below the book to describe the scene on the page. Add new pages or switch between pages through use of the bottom window. Easily save your book and find your creations in the My Stuff link along the top. For those interested in Augmented Reality, here is a screencast that shows it in action.The free version of the tool currently allows 10 books up to 10 pages each. A free iPad app is available. Premium memberships offer more features--at a price.

tag(s): creative writing (166)

In the Classroom

Create a Zooburst book to embed in a wiki, blog, or site to provide back to school information about your class or teaching team. Introduce the teacher(s), subjects, curriculum content, contact information, sites to view, etc. Use for creative writing in any subject area. Have students: make a book to recreate a historical event (or create an alternative ending), explain a scientific term in simpler words, write their own story, or explain how a math concept can be applied in the real world. Create a book and read it to the students during story time. Use Zooburst to create an introductory story for a new concept or unit. Use as a means for students to deliver presentations, reports, or explain complex concepts. You can put together a story using digital pictures from around your school and share it with your students during story time. Or have students work on stories in groups or individually to exercise their creativity, and maybe produce the next classic children's book.

If you have a gifted one or two in your class, set up a free class Zooburst account for them to create extensions of the curriculum in Zooburst: a Civil War tale, a modern day restaging of a Shakespeare play, a biography of a famous scientist or author.

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PBWorks - PBWorks. Inc.

Grades
K to 12
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This online tool lets you and your students create a collaborative "space" online in any subject, allowing as many people as you want to edit, make changes, add new content, ...more
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This online tool lets you and your students create a collaborative "space" online in any subject, allowing as many people as you want to edit, make changes, add new content, etc. You may be familiar with wikipedia, but wikis can be so much more! A recent poll of "high tech" educators cited wikis as the one web-based tool they could not live without! If you have not tried a wiki yet, visit the TeachersFirst Wiki Walk-Through for a detailed, step-by-step explanation and starter help, including dozens of ideas for ways to use a wiki in your classroom.

If you are not sure which wiki tool is best for you, see our detailed TeachersFirst review of PBWorks (formerly PBWiki) features, pros, and cons(done as part of the TeachersFirst Wiki Walk-Through). Ignore the persistent and pervasive suggestions that you upgrade to a fee-based membership!

tag(s): social networking (112), wikis (19)

In the Classroom

Click through the first two steps to create a free wiki, including the name (which becomes part of the wiki URL). Be sure to select "education" as the answer to "What is this wiki for?" Wait for your confirmation email (may take a while...check junk mail folder). After the email, choose whether your wiki is public or private (visible to members only or to the public). Set a "key" (password), if you wish. Bypass the offer to PAY. Use the Quickstart steps to configure the wiki just the way you want it or simply play to learn the Clickable editing toolbar. Add and edit pages, invite new members, explore the three template options and a few options for "skins." You may want to become familiar with the tool as a teacher-created site at first so you know its capabilities before turning students loose.

See the TeachersFirst Wiki Walk-Through for practical management and safety tips.

Safety concerns: Students need email accounts to have individual log-ins. Note: with this wiki tool, you do not have the option of "locking" certain pages or setting different "levels" of users. You and your students have equal access to make changes, once you make them "members." There are also "plug-ins' (widgets) available from the toolbar, some of which may connect you to sites with unmonitored content. Decide ahead of time what you policies are concerning use of the "plug-ins."

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Mathematical Interactives - Mr. Hellam

Grades
3 to 12
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This site offers many different math interactives, puzzles, and activities for all learners of math! Math games include popular puzzles such as the frog puzzle, matching, and an interactive...more
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This site offers many different math interactives, puzzles, and activities for all learners of math! Math games include popular puzzles such as the frog puzzle, matching, and an interactive 100's chart. Number puzzles included are magic squares and triangles, multiplication tables, mazes, and much more. Be sure to check out the interactive algebra online section for some great conversation starters and practice. This site isn't always updated with the creator's most current resources, but there is a link provided to his weblog to find the most current information.

tag(s): measurement (159)

In the Classroom

Create a link on classroom or computer lab computers for students to explore or practice specific math skills. Choose a different game or activity each week as a game of the week. Ask students to respond to activities in math journals by describing thought processes when solving problems. Create a class math wiki to share the activities they have tried and their successes and challenges. For more information about wikis, check out the TeachersFirst's Wiki Walk-Through.
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MathsMasters - MathMaster.org

Grades
3 to 8
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This site offers short videos explaining math concepts of numbers, algebra, space and shape, and data and probability. Each video offers a short, concise explanation on how to perform...more
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This site offers short videos explaining math concepts of numbers, algebra, space and shape, and data and probability. Each video offers a short, concise explanation on how to perform tasks such as adding numbers in a column or graph transformations. One of the best parts of this site is the activities section which offers video explanations of some fun math activities for students such as curves of pursuit and sequence designs. Each activity is based on using math concepts to create beautiful art.

tag(s): geometric shapes (163), sequences (16)

In the Classroom

Share the site with the art teacher when integrating math and art concepts. Ask students to create sequence designs and have others find the sequence used to create the design. Create a link to concept videos on classroom computers for students to use as review. Share a link to concept videos on your classroom website or blog for students to access at home. Have students create commercials about a math concept and share the video using a tool such as SchoolTube reviewed here.

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Sistine Chapel Virtual Tour - Villanova University

Grades
6 to 12
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Tour the Sistine Chapel from every angle. Villanova's virtual tour allows you to fly, rotate, zoom, and scroll over Michelangelo's frescos from every perceivable point of view. They...more
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Tour the Sistine Chapel from every angle. Villanova's virtual tour allows you to fly, rotate, zoom, and scroll over Michelangelo's frescos from every perceivable point of view. They even enhance the chapel's celestial aura with music. If it were not for the wonderful food in Rome, this tour could possibly challenge the merits of an actual visit.

tag(s): artists (75), renaissance (34)

In the Classroom

This site is perfect to support coursework in Art History, Studio Art, and World History. Introduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students explore this site independently or in small groups. Be sure to include a link to this site in a hot list of sources concerning Renaissance art. Consider asking a group of students to do additional research about the Sistine Chapel and it's fresco. Have students act as a virtual docent and record a screencast presentation using Screenr (reviewed here). Take still screen shots of the frescos to use in reports or other multimedia presentation format such as Animoto (reviewed here) or PodOmatic (reviewed here). This site is excellent for enrichment. Include it on your class web page for students to access both in and out of class.
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Robie House Interior Restoration - Frank Lloyd Wright Preservation Trust

Grades
6 to 12
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Catch a glimpse of the restoration of Frank Lloyd Wright's Robie House. Using digital age tools, preservationists are able to virtually reunite the Robie House with its original furnishings....more
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Catch a glimpse of the restoration of Frank Lloyd Wright's Robie House. Using digital age tools, preservationists are able to virtually reunite the Robie House with its original furnishings. Additional information about Wright's Prairie style architecture, the interior architect George Mann Niedecken, the Avery Coonley, and Dana House is also available.

tag(s): architecture (84), biographies (87)

In the Classroom

This site is a valuable resource for potential biography reports, and history students. The short biography of Frank Lloyd Wright and George Mann Niedecken provides an informative introductory look at these two great artists. Art history students will enjoy viewing the virtual restoration tour. The concept of reuniting dispersed artwork with their original home is a fascinating subject for class discussion. Consider posing questions such as "Should we return artifacts to original location for the sake of preservation?" and if so "What other American artifacts would you return?" Possibly museum curators would like to hear these suggestions? TeachersFirst contains links to major online museum collections such as The National Gallery of Art (reviewed here), The National Museum of the American Indian (reviewed here, and many more.
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