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Edublog - Edublogs.org

Grades
K to 12
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Blog your way into the latest social technology using Edublogs. Use the free service to set up a blog as a student, teacher, or campus. This education friendly tool avoids ...more
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Blog your way into the latest social technology using Edublogs. Use the free service to set up a blog as a student, teacher, or campus. This education friendly tool avoids some of the "public interaction" that can offer inappropriate content. Upgrade to more advanced features, to include more options. The additional information on blogging makes this site very valuable even if you already have a blogging platform. Find a plethora of advice, tutorials, pdfs, and lesson plans for blogging. This site is a great reference site for all who are beginning to use blogs, or even look for more varied and effective ways to log with students, or even other classes. Compare this tool to other free blogging tools mentioned in TeachersFirst's Blog Basics for the Classroom . This is a device-agnostic tool, available on the web but also available for free as both an Android and iOS app. Use it from any device or move between several devices and still access your work. App and web versions vary slightly.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): blogs (85), DAT device agnostic tool (180)

In the Classroom

Save this site as a favorite for all of your blogging needs. Find very informative instructions on blogging, and follow the student blogging challenge lesson plans. 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. Peruse through the various subjects and discover how other teachers use blogging in their classrooms. Using the given PDFs on blogging start up, parent guidelines, incorporating into subject areas, and adapt to make them suitable for you. Look at a variety of examples to help devise your own unique style to meet your students' needs.

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Agriculture - 4-U - Mark Thompson

Grades
K to 12
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Agriculture - 4-U offers an explanation of where and how we get our food. Though developed for the United Kingdom, much of the information also applies to the United States ...more
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Agriculture - 4-U offers an explanation of where and how we get our food. Though developed for the United Kingdom, much of the information also applies to the United States or any other country. There are sections for teachers, learners, and the "Farm Yard." The teacher portion contains many links to videos, lessons, and activities divided into student age ranges from Foundation (preschool) through Secondary. The Farm Yard contains videos and data on crops, livestock, disease, and agricultural careers. The learner portion has sections to learn about crops, livestock, and careers. Although some activities are immediately available (especially those in the learners and Farm Yard portions), you can access everything on the site after completing the free trial application (free until further notice!) requiring your name, email, and school information.

tag(s): agriculture (60), careers (139), plants (174), preK (289)

In the Classroom

Include this site during a unit on farming or careers. You can also include it in geography class discussions about use of natural resources and regional economies. Show videos on your interactive whiteboard or create a link on classroom computers. Challenge students to create a word cloud of terms about agriculture or farming using a tool such as Wordle reviewed here. Use an online tool such as the Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here) to create a visual comparison of crops found in the United Kingdom verses those found in your area.
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The Dream Flag Project - Jeff Harlan and Sandy Crow

Grades
K to 12
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The Dream Flag Project is a poetry-humanity project that fits into any unit on writing, poetry, character development, history, art, social issues, or community service. Reading, writing,...more
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The Dream Flag Project is a poetry-humanity project that fits into any unit on writing, poetry, character development, history, art, social issues, or community service. Reading, writing, critical thinking, and artistic expression activities are available for a wide range of abilities and grades. Start with Langston Hughes, "The Dream Keeper" and his collection of poetry. Explore an introduction to the Harlem Renaissance and black history or focus on goal-setting to make the dream come true. This collaborative project is created by teachers for teachers with a step-by-step approach. The resources include ideas, lesson plans, printable handouts, opportunities to collaborate, and examples.

tag(s): black history (56), poetry (219), service projects (24)

In the Classroom

Transform your classroom into a community of poets and dreamers and even choose to participate in a global project by writing and sharing poems with students around the world. Share this site during Poetry Month. You'll love seeing the pride in students as they engage in reading, writing, creating, and sharing poetry that reflects their hopes and dreams for today and the future. Introduce the extensive photos, videos, and other resources on a projector or an interactive whiteboard. There are "quick links" to an abundance of resources. The outcomes can range from poetry reading and writing to integrating music, theater, videotaping, or social networking (be sure to check with your school's policies). Have students make a multimedia presentation using one of the many TeachersFirst Edge tools reviewed here. This can be done in a sixty minute lesson or expanded to a year long theme. It's your choice!
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Internet Safety: Rules of the Road for Kids - Common Sense Media

Grades
3 to 12
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This site contains all the information that educators and parents need to keep kids safe online. There are resources, articles, videos, and links to help teach students about digital...more
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This site contains all the information that educators and parents need to keep kids safe online. There are resources, articles, videos, and links to help teach students about digital citizenship.

tag(s): cyberbullying (48), internet safety (118)

In the Classroom

Share this link on your class web page and/or in a parent newsletter to help parents learn about Internet safety. Use the videos to help students learn how to be safe online. Share the videos on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Use the information to run a parent information night.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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NetFamilyNews - Anne Collier

Grades
K to 12
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Founded in 1999, NetFamilyNews has become one of the leading sources of current technology information for parents. Subscribe to the site to receive a weekly email of the latest articles....more
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Founded in 1999, NetFamilyNews has become one of the leading sources of current technology information for parents. Subscribe to the site to receive a weekly email of the latest articles. Parents that subscribe to a web reader can add an RSS feeder to receive the updates. For information on a specific topic just make sure the www.netfamilynews.org button is checked under the search box before you search otherwise you will be searching the entire web using Google. Monitoring a child's use of technology is a difficult daunting task. NetFamilyNews will help parents make knowledgeable and informed decisions.

tag(s): cyberbullying (48), internet safety (118)

In the Classroom

Include this site on your class web page for parents as a reference to help them deal with technology issues at home. If you do not have a web-page consider sending a newsletter home. If you are doing an Internet safety lesson with your class, parents can reinforce the lesson at home with information and ideas from NetFamilyNews. Have students make a poster with rules that help them stay safe when using technology such as the Internet and cell phones. Students can take this poster home, share it with parents and add rules for use at home. The poster can be displayed by the computer or in students' bedrooms.

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Just for Kids Who Stutter - The Stuttering Foundation

Grades
1 to 8
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Read stories written by children who have problems with stuttering. One selection is available in pdf book form, and offers crayon colored drawings to go with the complete story of...more
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Read stories written by children who have problems with stuttering. One selection is available in pdf book form, and offers crayon colored drawings to go with the complete story of one child's experiences. Other offerings include poems, drawings, cartoons, and short essays, and FAQ information about stuttering. Students of any age are welcome to contribute here. Offerings are written in English and French.

tag(s): disabilities (20), speaking (25), speech (89)

In the Classroom

Share these stories during an anti-bullying lesson. Talk about how you would feel if you stuttered or were bullied for another reason. Make a list of ways to react to bullies. Encourage students to add their own experiences to this site, if appropriate permissible under school policies (check with your administrator). Get parent permission before posting any student work on this sharing site.
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MailFreezr - Duncan McLaud

Grades
K to 12
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Use this memorable service to store your emails waiting to be sent. This site will deliver your emails after a given number of years. Emails can be sent to any ...more
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Use this memorable service to store your emails waiting to be sent. This site will deliver your emails after a given number of years. Emails can be sent to any address and can be sent in 1 year increments from 1-100 years! Just type in your name, email, the recipient's email, and your message. Choose how many years to freeze the email and you are done. Of course, there are many limitations: will these email addresses be available 100 years from now? What happens if you change your mind? Although the site would be much more useful if the dates could be personalized more to specific dates or months, it might be worth using for simple items.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): new years (11), organizational skills (125), writing prompts (93)

In the Classroom

A good use for this would be for emails to yourself with reminders for annual events, not for personal use. Send an email to yourself at the end of a unit with information on resources that worked, classroom tips, where to find additional information, etc. Set up emails when you receive your annual schedule with reminders before each event. Use this tool as a writing prompt. Ask students to write an email to themselves as a high school senior or even to themselves at the end of the next year to see if they have met personal goals such as New Years resolutions. Have your entire "graduating" elementary class write a class time capsule about what was important to them in the year 20XX and "send" it to themselves, set to deliver at the end of middle or high school.

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CurriConnects Book List: Books for Tough Situationa - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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Use this CurriConnects list to find independent reading books to help students facing difficult circumstances such as divorce, loss, bullying, deployed parents, friendship issues, eating...more
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Use this CurriConnects list to find independent reading books to help students facing difficult circumstances such as divorce, loss, bullying, deployed parents, friendship issues, eating disorders, and more. CurriConnects thematic book lists include ISBN numbers for ordering or searching, interest grade levels, ESL levels and Lexiles'''® to match with student independent reading levels to challenge, not frustrate. Don't miss other CurriConnects themes being added regularly.

tag(s): divorce (7), eating disorders (7), emotions (36), social skills (21)

In the Classroom

Build student literacy skills and help students facing personal challenges. Reading about personally meaningful topics will help students work through them. It will also build the important reading strategy of connecting what they read to what they already know. Keep this list handy in your Favorites to suggest options when a student seems to need them. Since the list includes topics for all levels of maturity, you might want to share portions of it rather than the entire list. You may also wan to tell parents about it during parent conferences or when situations arise. as always, allow students to self- select independent reading books from a list of options. Don't forget to share the list with the school and local libraries so they can bring in some of the books on interlibrary loan, if needed. Your school counselor will also appreciate this list. CurriConnects are a great help for teachers and parents who have lost school library/media specialists due to budget cuts.

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Thanks for Teaching Us - T.B.D.

Grades
3 to 12
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Whether you have a favorite professor or elementary teacher, here is a way to thank them publicly. It's very simple. There is no registration. Click on "Submit a Story" ...more
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Whether you have a favorite professor or elementary teacher, here is a way to thank them publicly. It's very simple. There is no registration. Click on "Submit a Story" to fill in the teacher name, what you are thanking him/her for, and other details. You can include your Twitter picture. You can even email the letter to the teacher. Read the letters posted by others. This site could be used for thanking a favorite past teacher, or anyone affiliated with a school. There is a multitude of people who work in schools and are kind to children.

tag(s): letter writing (19)

In the Classroom

What a nice way to teach letter writing! Teach your students how to write a friendly letter for an authentic audience. Have them put their final copy on Thanks for Teaching Us. In lower grades, work together to write letters to "community helpers" in your school. What about that favorite coach? The custodian who got the ball off the roof? The lunch lady who gave your student a lunch even though his/her account had no funds? The principal? Counselors? Avoid having students identify themselves on the Internet. Use first names only with parent permission.

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World Science - World Science

Grades
4 to 12
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Find science news featuring the latest research, discoveries, and questions facing science today. Find interesting questions to inspire all of your students to wonder why and continue...more
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Find science news featuring the latest research, discoveries, and questions facing science today. Find interesting questions to inspire all of your students to wonder why and continue guessing. Examples of articles include: Second "Mozart effect" Premature Babies May Grow Faster, Huge Hidden Saturn Ring Found, and New Anti-Cancer Strategy Makes Tumors Age. Latest breaking news and science in images add a greater depth to the site.
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tag(s): animal homes (61), animals (322), diseases (72), genetics (88), news (262), planets (128)

In the Classroom

World Science empowers your students to recognize that they too can ask questions, and they too can understand the latest science questions and answers. Inspire thinkers to find questions and seek answers. Set as your home page and always captivate your students. Use as a reference site to add the latest science news. Subscribe and send to each of your students emails. Reinforce the scientific method in everyday research. Have your classes create their own science news on your website. This is an excellent site for inspiring critical thinking skills and creative thinking. Be sure to include this site as part of your current events and curriculum in gifted and advanced classes.

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Behavior Doctor Forms and Tools - Laura A. Riffel, PHD

Grades
K to 12
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Behavior Doctor Seminars offers resources to be used in schoolwide "Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports." The site offers paid seminars; instead you can start positive behavioral...more
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Behavior Doctor Seminars offers resources to be used in schoolwide "Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports." The site offers paid seminars; instead you can start positive behavioral interventions in the classroom or even schoolwide. Try these positive behavior interventions at home as well. The interventions are powerful and may sound a little too "happy" at times. But you get more with sugar than vinegar! The topics vary greatly and include parenting articles such as "100 Free Ways Parents Can Reward Their Children" and teaching articles such as "Desk Fairy Coupon for Neat Desks." There is something here for all grade levels.

tag(s): behavior (46), classroom management (159), organizational skills (125), parent conferences (23), parents (57), Special Needs (33)

In the Classroom

Read about positive behavior interventions and use this site as a resource for implementing the practices that you are comfortable with. If nothing else, try some of the "100 free ways to reward children." These simple ideas can mean a lot to your students. Check out the list of Character Education books. Educate yourself using some of the special education information available here. Be sure to share useful ideas with parents by sharing this link on you class web page or i newsletters. You may want to suggest specific ideas to individual parents at conferences.
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PBS Learning Media - PBS

Grades
K to 12
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This PBS site is a reorganized collection of over 16,000+ public media offerings (including radio and photographs), arranged specifically for preK-12 teachers. You can search by subject...more
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This PBS site is a reorganized collection of over 16,000+ public media offerings (including radio and photographs), arranged specifically for preK-12 teachers. You can search by subject and grade level across many subjects. After viewing three offerings, you must join (for free) to continue. Membership includes the option of saving favorites. You can also find correlations to state standards. The site is still in development, so material is being added frequently.

tag(s): alphabet (86), careers (139), dance (27), data (161), decimals (125), diseases (72), human body (132), mark twain (9), multimedia (62), music theory (44), percent (82), probability (141), problem solving (294), psychology (66)

In the Classroom

Find more details and teacher information under "Customization for States and District" to align the offerings here with your state's standards. Check this site for an introduction to a curriculum topic or unit or when looking for support activities to reinforce concepts. Use this site as the starting point for individual or group projects. Share the interactives as a learning center or on your interactive whiteboard or projector. This is one that you want to save in your favorites.
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Compare & Contrast Map - Read, Write, Think - International Reading Association

Grades
3 to 12
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This interactive graphic organizer helps students develop an outline for one of three types of comparison essays: whole-to-whole, similarities-to-differences, or point-to-point. A link...more
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This interactive graphic organizer helps students develop an outline for one of three types of comparison essays: whole-to-whole, similarities-to-differences, or point-to-point. A link in the introduction to the "Comparison and Contrast Guide" gives students the chance to get definitions and look at examples before they begin working. The tool offers multiple ways to navigate information, including a graphic on the right to move around the map without having to work in a linear fashion. The finished map can be saved, e-mailed, or printed. There are many additional interactives and lesson plans (with standards included!).

tag(s): charts and graphs (197), concept mapping (20), graphic organizers (39)

In the Classroom

Use this site to introduce comparisons to your students on your interactive whiteboard or projector. After demonstrating how to use the site, create a link on classroom computers for students to make their own comparisons to be printed and shared. Divide students into 3 groups - one for each type of comparison essay - and have them create comparisons for their type, then share and compare with other students. Have students create "talking pictures" to illustrate the different types of comparisons using Fotobabble reviewed here. Use this site with gifted students as a way for them to explore subjects more deeply than discussed in class. Use this site with ESL/ELL students to help organize information easily and as a visual representation of class material.
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Decico - Decico.com

Grades
4 to 12
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How do you make a decision and weigh all of the factors? Use Decico. This decision making tool uses a decision matrix technique to look at the problem in context ...more
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How do you make a decision and weigh all of the factors? Use Decico. This decision making tool uses a decision matrix technique to look at the problem in context and calculate favorable alternatives. Select the alternatives you want to compare, choose how you want to compare them, and then compare the generated score. Highest score should be given consideration. Create a login to save your decision matrices. Link, download, or embed the results.

tag(s): concept mapping (20), debate (46), mind map (22), persuasive writing (57)

In the Classroom

Use for many kinds of societal, political, or environmental discussions and decisions, such as paper or plastic bags, drilling or not in ANWAR, etc. Use in literary discussions of alternatives faced by characters. Use in preparation for debates or persuasive writing. Generate a list of actions and alternatives and create the decision matrix. Use multimedia or conventional posters to generate information about the advantages and disadvantages of each position. Try a site like Piclits (reviewed here) or Typogenerator (reviewed here). Create a case study about a real life situation where a decision would have to be made and provide roles for students. Students use the decision making matrix with their assigned role to generate a vote for the issue. Consider using this tool for a project actually occurring in their neighborhood. For example, a field and trees being taken down as well as the changing of the landscape for a proposed development. Use the decision making matrix in Decico to determine why the decision to proceed happened or should happen.

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Sqworl - Caleb Brown

Grades
K to 12
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Sqworl is a site for combining multiple links into one single link. Registration is required; however, it is very easy. You create a username and password, add your email and ...more
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Sqworl is a site for combining multiple links into one single link. Registration is required; however, it is very easy. You create a username and password, add your email and it is done. After registering, a personal homepage is created, this is where the magic can begin! The homepage is where groups will be created to combine url's. Then adding some groups of link begins the process of creating groups. At this point a title is given to the group being created (examples might be Math sites, American History, etc.). The final step is to add a short description. After choosing start, simply copy and paste the url you want to use and add a short description and click finish. Once a group is created, it can be shared through the url shown on the page. Sqworl also has a bookmarklet that can be added to the browser toolbar making it easier to add items to your groups without having to open the homepage. There is also a mobile app for iPhone.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): bookmarks (68)

In the Classroom

In the classroom use this site to combine url's of online class projects into one group. Create a group of resources for students or parents for different subjects and share the url through your classroom website or newsletter. Create a group with videos relating to classroom content. Create a classroom account and let students add resources they have found to groups to share with others. Show students how to follow other groups on Sqworl and share resources by creating their own groups. Share this site with others in your building or district as an easy way to save and share online resources.

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Research Building Blocks - Read, Write, Think - International Reading Association

Grades
3 to 12
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This site offers a complete lesson plan to use with students prior to beginning a first research project. The lesson takes students through the process of analyzing book titles to ...more
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This site offers a complete lesson plan to use with students prior to beginning a first research project. The lesson takes students through the process of analyzing book titles to determine ones that would be helpful in their research. It then builds on class discussion to enable students to make informed decisions on appropriate research material. One especially useful part of the lesson is the Hints About Print interactive link included in the lesson plan. This would be a wonderful site to use on your interactive whiteboard to lead the class through basics of choosing materials for research. Other useful items on the site are the nonfiction book reviews and nonfiction book evaluation forms that are available in pdf form for easy classroom use. Find all resources and print material by choosing the Resources and Preparation tab near the top of the page.

tag(s): book reports (36), interactive stories (30)

In the Classroom

View the Hints About Print interactive with your class on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) to demonstrate different concepts on choosing appropriate resources for research. If you don't have an interactive whiteboard, create a link on your classroom computers for students to view as a center. This site is perfect to use with older students who may have already done research projects as a review for choosing materials. ESL and Special Education teachers may want to use materials included in this lesson as an aid for students who have been assigned research projects.
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Inspire My Kids - Mike Stutman and Kevin Conklin

Grades
K to 12
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Find inspiring, age-appropriate, real-life stories, videos, and projects to share with the children and teens. The site hopes to help these students take positive actions and become...more
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Find inspiring, age-appropriate, real-life stories, videos, and projects to share with the children and teens. The site hopes to help these students take positive actions and become the best people they can be. Stories offer great examples of values like courage, determination, honesty, humility, kindness, responsibility, and tolerance. The stories range from incredible kids inspiring other kids, to amazing animals demonstrating admirable qualities, to the invention of inspirational social causes. Stories are searchable in several ways - by values, topics, age range, and format. Formats include articles, podcasts, reference, and videos. You can also sign up for the site's newsletter including updates and new article information.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): bullying (51), disabilities (20), school violence (13), service projects (24)

In the Classroom

Share stories from the site on your interactive whiteboard or projector when learning about character traits such as sportsmanship, perseverance, and responsibility. Use the site as a resource when problems arise in the classroom such as bullying, intolerance, or special needs awareness. Have students use resources from the website as models for writing their own articles or creating a podcast. Use a site such as PodOmatic (reviewed here). Use the stories as models for writing activities and essays. Your students could also draw inspiration from this site to create values comics using one of many comic creation tools in this TeachersFirst collection.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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CurriConnects Book List - What do you do? - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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Use this CurriConnects list to find books related to careers. CurriConnects thematic book lists include ISBN numbers for ordering or searching, interest grade levels, ESL levels and...more
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Use this CurriConnects list to find books related to careers. CurriConnects thematic book lists include ISBN numbers for ordering or searching, interest grade levels, ESL levels and Lexiles''''''® to match with student independent reading levels to challenge, not frustrate. Don't miss other CurriConnects themes being added regularly.

tag(s): book lists (131), careers (139), reading lists (81)

In the Classroom

Build student literacy skills, reinforce what students are learning about Careers, and help students build the important reading strategy of connecting what they read to prior (classroom!) knowledge. Share this link on your class web page or wiki so students can select independent reading books to accompany your unit on careers. Don't forget to share the list with the school and local libraries so they can bring in some of the books on interlibrary loan. CurriConnects are a great help for teachers who have lost school library/media specialists due to budget cuts.

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Portfoliovillage - Site Maker Software Company

Grades
4 to 12
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PortfolioVillage is a powerful eportfolio site where you or your students can showcase all types of work. PortfolioVillage is a free and easy to use program. Their unique drag and ...more
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PortfolioVillage is a powerful eportfolio site where you or your students can showcase all types of work. PortfolioVillage is a free and easy to use program. Their unique drag and drop editor makes it easy. There are also editable flash widgets and the thousands of stock images and animations. You can create a flash portfolio website with media rich components: videos, audio, a play list, create forms, chats, and blogs. Be sure to watch the introduction video and read about the features provided.

PortfolioVillage must be updated every six months to stay free. Your portfolio will be deleted if not updated.

For those of you with iPads, this Flash site won't work for you. However, you might try Google Swiffy reviewed here. Google Swiffy is a tool that lets you convert Flash SWF files to HTML5 to view on non-Flash devices such as iTouch, iPad, and iPhone.

tag(s): creativity (118), portfolios (32)

In the Classroom

There are a gazillion ways to use an eportfolio! Have your students upload their current and past work that they think they might want to showcase. They can have an area for all their different talents whether it is drawing, writing, acting, creating games or codes, designing anything, or athletic prowess. Students could create an online presence to share in college or job applications.

You may want to start out slowly, allowing your students to choose a talent that may fit within traditional curriculum. Have students select several pieces to demonstrate their talent and upload it to a working portfolio. You can then have the students reflect on each piece in writing. Students should then choose one artifact to showcase; have them write about why that was their choice. The eportfolio can be presented in class by students using a projector or an interactive whiteboard. Teachers who have students for more than one year (such as in a gifted program or Art classes) can encourage students to show growth in their talents.

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Amelia Earhart Birthplace Museum - Amelia Earhart Birthplace Museum

Grades
4 to 12
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Amelia Earhart's birthplace and home in Atchison, Kansas has been turned into a museum to honor her accomplishments. Their website offers several resources geared toward showcasing...more
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Amelia Earhart's birthplace and home in Atchison, Kansas has been turned into a museum to honor her accomplishments. Their website offers several resources geared toward showcasing her life and accomplishments. Visitors to the site can take a virtual tour of the museum to visit the parlors, kitchen and other rooms of her childhood home including several original artifacts. You can visit the link entitled Amelia Earhart to read a short biography, childhood information, aviation accomplishments, fun facts, and much more. Be sure to check out the News Clips portion for actual copies of news articles about her adventures.

tag(s): aviation (35), careers (139), women (94)

In the Classroom

Have students create an online presentation on Amelia Earhart or women in aviation using one of the many TeachersFirst Edge presentation tools reviewed here. Have students create "talking pictures" as an alternative to a traditional reports using Fotobabble reviewed here.

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