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TeachersFirst Wiki Walk-Through - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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There is nothing twicky about a wiki. Learn about this online collaboration tool: what a wiki is, how you might use it in your classroom, how to explain it to ...more
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There is nothing twicky about a wiki. Learn about this online collaboration tool: what a wiki is, how you might use it in your classroom, how to explain it to parents and administration, and how to get started. There are over 50 examples of activities you can do with a wiki and links to a free tool to get started. A fresh revision of the Walk-Through in 2008 includes comparison reviews of the top three wiki tools for education. We even give you the downloadable handout to send home.

tag(s): wikis (19)

In the Classroom

This is listed as a TeachersFirst "edge" entry, but our step-by-step walk-through takes the edge off and makes your wiki a walk in the park. Check it out now, while there is still FREE classroom wiki space available from the three wiki tools we review in detail.
 

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ThinkUKnow - Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre

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K to 12
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This timely website is a must-see if you are teaching computer and Internet safety. The site is divided into three age levels of activities: 5-7, 8-10, and 11-16. Students ages ...more
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This timely website is a must-see if you are teaching computer and Internet safety. The site is divided into three age levels of activities: 5-7, 8-10, and 11-16. Students ages 5-7 get to meet Hector and take a tour and see interactive information about Internet safety. There are several interactive cartoons and other educational material. Students ages 8-10 meet Griff and his friends to learn how to stay safe while using email, cell phones, chat rooms, and other new technologies. Turn your sound on to listen to Hector and Griff explain safety on a young person's level (and with charming British accents). The site for secondary students includes video clips, information, and more. All three sub-sites provide age-appropriate activities, with upbeat music and neat interactives. There are also links for parents and teachers. The teachers link features lesson plans to coincide with the cartoons and/or video clips. The lesson plans require membership (which is easy and free). Viewing the cartoons does not require membership. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): chat (51), internet safety (109), safety (92)

In the Classroom

Click on Parent and Teachers resources to access lesson plans and resources that teach alongside the Cyber Caf?. You must register to access these, but it is painless. Interact with the content of this site on an interactive whiteboard or projector with your entire class to generate a class discussion on this important topic.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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OnGuard Online - U.S. Government

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4 to 12
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Onguard Online has compiled resources for computer users to help keep their computers safe and internet transactions worry free. Topics range from e-mail scams to Identity Theft, Internet...more
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Onguard Online has compiled resources for computer users to help keep their computers safe and internet transactions worry free. Topics range from e-mail scams to Identity Theft, Internet Auctions, Spyware, Wireless Security, Phishing, Social Networking Sites, Online Shopping, Peer-to-Peer File-Sharing (P2P), VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol), Laptop Security, and Investing Online. There are games for Elementary students as well as useful tools and tips for more sophisticated users including adults. Spanish speakers can switch the site to Spanish for their convenience. The Federal Trade Commission maintains the site, but the information comes from an impressive collection of agencies including The Office of Homeland Security and i-Safe.

tag(s): internet safety (109), safety (92), social networking (112)

In the Classroom

Survey students about their online usage and behaviors. This can be done informally as a class discussion or as an online survey that is filled out by students. Create a quick poll using SurveyPlanet, reviewed here. Use a projector and or a whiteboard to display the results and discuss the results of the survey with the class. Emphasize the importance of online safety and introduce the OnGuard Online website as an important resource for accurate and current information. Why not have cooperative learning groups investigate one of the topic areas provided (such as identity theft). Then have the groups make a multimedia presentation to present their findings to the class. Use one of the many TeachersFirst Edge tools reviewed here. Younger students can be introduced to the online games that teach appropriate and ethical online behavior. A scavenger hunt or questionnaire can be created for older students to explore the many issues that arise while online. As an extension activity students can role play different scenarios that they are confronted with when they are online and how they can respond in a safe ethical manner.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Multimedia in Education - Chris Clementi

Grades
6 to 10
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This website will challenge students and teachers alike. The website is in WebQuest format, but could easily be broken down into a shorter lesson. The main topic is multimedia in ...more
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This website will challenge students and teachers alike. The website is in WebQuest format, but could easily be broken down into a shorter lesson. The main topic is multimedia in education and designing multimedia products to fit the content and the audience of the presentation. Nearly every student and/or teacher can learn something new about computer capabilities. This website is eye-opening and very well done. The "task" is to choose a topic (such as culture, weather, animals, or world issues) and to choose images and videos to complement the research topic. Students also have the option to add sound effects and music.

By completing this web activity, students learn about various computer programs available (such as Audacity, Movie Maker, iMovie, WMP, and Real Player). Other technology topics discussed include resizing images, identifying the differences between a jpg and gif, how to grab audio from videos, and much more. There are detailed directions available in PDF format. This website requires FLASH and Adobe, get both from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

Teachers, you might want to try some of these activities on your own. You might be surprised at how much information you will learn about computer capabilities and multimedia in education. Perhaps you can create a sample student project as an individualized professional development goal beofe doing this unit with your team.

tag(s): images (266), movies (65)

In the Classroom

What a fabulous website to use to integrate technology into your lessons (in science, social studies, LA, and other curriculum areas). Use this website as a process step the first time students research any topic so they can create an effective multimedia presentation as their final project. If you team teach (as in middle school), orient the entire team to multimedia projects using this site early in the year, so all teachers can assume the same skills in your students.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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ConnectSafely - Tech Parenting Group

Grades
K to 12
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This site is a discussion-opener on safe use of the "social web." Some of the tools included are social networking sites, virtual worlds, chat, cell phones, video-sharing, and more....more
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This site is a discussion-opener on safe use of the "social web." Some of the tools included are social networking sites, virtual worlds, chat, cell phones, video-sharing, and more. There are tips and advice for just about any medium kids and adults use today, as well as discussion forums where parents can ask questions and share information. Each article and advice section can be emailed at the click of a mouse. You can also download and share printable version (site creators do ask that you not modify them and that you simply tell them if you do download and share). While some posts may not represent your point of view, the important thing is to open dialog.

tag(s): internet safety (109), safety (92), social networking (112)

In the Classroom

Include this link on your teacher or school web page for parents to access as part of a plan to work together. Consider using it as a hub for an evening discussion session with parents and students in a "round table" to air concerns and work together. Simply blocking or ignoring these tools is not educating or helping our kids. We want our students to grow into safe and responsible citizens both online and in person. If your school can involve and inform parents and students, you will have a better likelihood of using the new tools of the web in productive classroom settings, as well.

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Common Craft - Common Craft Productions

Grades
K to 12
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This is a TeachersFirst Edge Entry for ANYONE who wants to know more about new technologies. No special skills needed. Watch and learn. If you are embarrassed to say that ...more
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This is a TeachersFirst Edge Entry for ANYONE who wants to know more about new technologies. No special skills needed. Watch and learn. If you are embarrassed to say that you don't know what all the "new web 2.0" terms are all about, this one is for you (and probably for your students' parents, as well). Common Craft uses a very simple, visual method of explaining all the latest technologies so that anyone can understand, using short video clips narrated by a positive and respectful voice. The next time you hear someone talking about RSS feeds or some other new doo-dad, stop here first so you will know what they are talking about. Did you think you were the only one who did not know? Fear not. This site has incredible popularity because there are LOADS of people quietly questioning -- just like you. To view the video clips FREE, click on "Video Library" and the topic that you wish to view. Despite a paid membership model, Common Craft still offers the videos for free, but it does have a watermark saying, "For evaluation only." If you wish to share this with a group, they will need to view it on individual/partner computers (or IOS devices) or on a projector that has a zoom function to enlarge a selected area of the screen.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): blogs (88), bookmarks (60), social networking (112), video (254), wikis (19)

In the Classroom

Start by looking at "Most Viewed" and "Most Popular Right Now," but don't be afraid to search for other topics that have you wondering. You will definitely want to make this site a Favorite and tag is as "professional" information to keep you informed. Share it on your teacher web page to help out your parents, too!
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Tiny URL - Gilby Productions

Grades
K to 12
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This very simple little tool allows you to copy a LONG URL (web address), paste it into this web page, and get back a very short URL that fits far ...more
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This very simple little tool allows you to copy a LONG URL (web address), paste it into this web page, and get back a very short URL that fits far more easily on your teacher web page, in your handouts, or on your blackboard for students to enter.

In the Classroom

If you make a map in Google Maps, an online graphic organizer, a set of online flash cards, to anything else that allows you to share my emailing or copying a URL, this tools will save you from endless errors or emails full of ten-line URLs. Be sure to show your middle and high school students how to use it, as well. This will solve the problem of URLs that get split and no longer work when the text wraps around to another line.

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OneWebDay

Grades
K to 12
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"The mission of OneWebDay is to create, maintain, advance, and promote a global day to celebrate online life." Started in 2006, One Web Day is a day for awareness of ...more
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"The mission of OneWebDay is to create, maintain, advance, and promote a global day to celebrate online life." Started in 2006, One Web Day is a day for awareness of the power of the Internet and activities to highlight its use in positive ways. While part of the mission of OneWebDay is a sort of "Earth Day for the web," a chance to highlight and preserve the things that make the web a healthy place to learn, work, and share -- all in an ethical way. Schools may want to take the day (or the closest school day)to highlight how much we benefit from the web and how students and families can use it safely and positively.

tag(s): internet safety (109), safety (92)

In the Classroom

Some ideas to celebrate the day: Send class emails to the web sites you find most useful to thank them for their contributions to your class' learning. Find a school web site in another town or country and email the webmaster to relay a "hello" to a classroom there. Make a class wiki to share all the positive things you gain from the web---and invite parents to join in, too. Have students keep a web "diary" for 24 hours, noting every time they use or benefit from someone else using the web (even the weather man on TV gets his/her information from the web!). Predict how many "web contacts" your class will have, then add them up to see how close you came. Plan a OneWebDay event for your school and share it on the OneWebDay site or with the local press. With primary grade students, take the time to point out which activities you do in class come from the web (these children see "the computer" as the genie of all things and do not distinguish between the web and a CD game). Make a giant "web" out of yarn and "connect" everyone on the playground. Send an email from your class to the principal, telling him/her about OneWebDay. What else can you think of?

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Safe Teens - safekids.com

Grades
7 to 12
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This site is the teen partner to safekids.com. Its additional offerings include a wonderful cyber-dictionary parents can use when they are totally puzzled by acronyms their children...more
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This site is the teen partner to safekids.com. Its additional offerings include a wonderful cyber-dictionary parents can use when they are totally puzzled by acronyms their children are using in email, chat rooms, and text messaging (Note: the language is realistically what some teens use---asterisks replace "bad" words, but the abbreviations could teach the timid more than they want to know). Highlights for teens include tips about safe blogging, warnings about grooming, general Internet safety info, and accompanying info for parents. A link to blogsafety.com allows users to report abuses and suspicious behavior that might occur on blogging or social network sites. Links to current articles about Internet misuse keep the site current.

tag(s): chat (51), internet safety (109), safety (92), social networking (112)

In the Classroom

Use this site as the starting point when teens have questions about blogging, cyber safety, and correct Internet behavior so they know what to watch for should something unethical occur. Be sure to share it with parents via your teacher web page or at open house, as well. As you begin web-based activities in class, take the time to repeat the basics found here, even if another teacher is supposed to "cover" this topic.

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Safe Kids - safekids.com

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1 to 12
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This site offers information to children, teens, and parents about how to stay safe online and keep your computer safe. It contains information sheets for various levels, downloadable...more
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This site offers information to children, teens, and parents about how to stay safe online and keep your computer safe. It contains information sheets for various levels, downloadable parent and child online safety pledges, and slide shows about Internet safety. The slide shows do require the user to register at myspace.com, so this requirement may preclude usage at school. There is even a SafeKids song, but it downloads slowly, even on a fast connection (opt for the dial-up version). Younger children will also enjoy the online safety quiz. This site requires Flash. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): internet safety (109), resources (112), safety (92)

In the Classroom

Include this site on your teacher web page for students and parents to access as a reference. Share the printables with parents at open house or conferences. As you introduce web-based activities in your classroom, pause to rmind students of these safety rules, even if someone else is supposed to "cover" them in their classroom. Parts of this site require the use of myspace, so be sure to preview it and match the requirements to your school's regulations.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Making Websites - Woodlands Junior School

Grades
K to 12
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This extremely useful website provides information on "how-to" create websites. The website provides seven easy steps to follow to create the website of your dreams. There are also...more
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This extremely useful website provides information on "how-to" create websites. The website provides seven easy steps to follow to create the website of your dreams. There are also links provided for finding free clip art, creating online games, and using the Internet in your classroom. This website requires FLASH, get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.. Note: The site is British, so beware of spelling differences!

In the Classroom

Whether you are looking to create a classroom website or looking for new ways to incorporate the Internet into your lessons - this website is sure to provide you with some new and creative ideas. Many of the tools may be challenging, but you can use the IDEAS on any simple web page, including the one provided with your free TeachersFirst membership.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Web Wise Kids - Web Wise Kids

Grades
6 to 12
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Although this site sells its programs to help parents and children stay safe on the Internet, the sections for Teens and Parents contain valuable information and tools. In addition...more
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Although this site sells its programs to help parents and children stay safe on the Internet, the sections for Teens and Parents contain valuable information and tools. In addition to examples of how scary and intrusive unsafe use of the Internet can be, the pages for parents and teens offer Safety Tips and a downloadable Internet Safety Plan. This site requires Real Player or QuickTime and Adobe Acrobat. Get them from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): internet safety (109), safety (92)

In the Classroom

Share the parent information on your teacher web page or in a classroom newsletter, especially if you ask students to use the Internet for homework assignments. It is easy to avoid the advertising or donation areas of the site and use the important information.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Get Net Wise - Internet Education Foundation

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K to 12
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This is a great compilation of information on internet safety, covering many hot topics including safety for your children, protecting your personal information, stopping unsolicited...more
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This is a great compilation of information on internet safety, covering many hot topics including safety for your children, protecting your personal information, stopping unsolicited email, and keeping your computer safe. The section on Safety for Children is especially appropriate for parents of school age children and includes an Internet Safety Guide, Tools for Families, a place to report problem sites and occurrences, and further web sites for children. Computer literacy teachers and those responsible for teaching INternet safety in any course will find the information wuite helpful. Sections are divided by age-ranges so information is age-appropriate.

tag(s): internet safety (109), safety (92)

In the Classroom

Share this site in your classroom newsletter or on your teacher web page to help parents protect their children, themselves, and their computers. Some of the safety information is directly aplicable in your classroom technology-based lessons, as well.

You may find some good tips for protecting your own home computer and children, too!

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Scoring PowerPoints - Jamie McKenzie

Grades
4 to 12
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This website provides teachers with methods of evaluating PowerPoint presentations. Although the material is lengthy, there is some good information included. At this website, you...more
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This website provides teachers with methods of evaluating PowerPoint presentations. Although the material is lengthy, there is some good information included. At this website, you will find rubrics, diagrams, examples, explanations and other information.

tag(s): assessment (100)

In the Classroom

If your students are creating PowerPoint presentations, use this tool to create a useful and practical assessment. Avoid the pitfalls of being "charmed by glitz" when your students use technology. This site will help you and your students look for appropriate substance. Be sure to include this link on your teacher web page all year long for students to use as a reference when doing multimedia projects.

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Google Drive - Google

Grades
6 to 12
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Use Google Drive to create and save your Google Docs. With Google Docs, you can create, edit, reformat, upload, and share documents you've created in WORD or other office applications....more
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Use Google Drive to create and save your Google Docs. With Google Docs, you can create, edit, reformat, upload, and share documents you've created in WORD or other office applications. You can also look at the editing history. Perhaps the best feature is the ability to collaborate on documents and spreadsheets with anyone or with a selected group. Groups share editing capabilities, making collaboration much easier. You can publish newly created, uploaded, downloaded, or revised documents and spreadsheets as well as making links to them on personal blogs. Easy directions and familiar-looking pages make exporting and importing documents simple; Google also helps keep you organized.

tag(s): editing (61), spreadsheets (17)

In the Classroom

A "tour" and simple to understand directions make this site easy to use. Have your students set up collaborative groups for projects, lab data, and more. Or set them up yourself, giving them specific passwords to access their "space." Help your gifted students stay organized (and collaborate) using this tool. Users are normally invited to "join" via an email message. This may be problematic in the many schools that do not permit student email access at school. Note that notifications sent by Google Docs may also land in "junk mail" folders or be blocked by spam filters. We suggest that you experiment with a small group of students to determine what will work in your particular situation. One option is to set up the groups with the teacher as a "member" but have students work from home, using their personal email addresses, for group projects. Make sure you are protecting the safety of student work and identity and are within your school's Acceptable Use Policy. Anything students can do on a single computer, they can do collaboratively on Google docs, accessing their work from any online computer.

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Quintura: See and Find - Quintura

Grades
4 to 12
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This new approach to search engine uses "clouds" of words related to your search topic to prompt you in narrowing your search. Quintura was launched as a beta test in ...more
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This new approach to search engine uses "clouds" of words related to your search topic to prompt you in narrowing your search. Quintura was launched as a beta test in late 2006 by a team of Russian and American developers. If you enter a search term and hit Enter (or click the magnifying glass), the left side of the screen displays a visual map of words related to your search. Click a word for a more precise view. You can also adjust settings and search images, video, and Amazon.com from the same search box. Another advantage: you can SAVE your search and share it with friends.

Realize that this search engine does not apparently have a reputability ranking system as Google does, but for students trying to narrow a topic or find out what else is related, this is a great tool. Visual and global students (and adults) will find it far easier to navigate than outline-type approaches. More linear, detail-oriented thinkers may find it annoying. See the Help explanations for some great information.

tag(s): search strategies (30)

In the Classroom

Display this search engine as an option as you start a research project. It would work extremely well on an interactive whiteboard for demo. If you teach younger studen ts, try the kids version.

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International Technology Education Association (ITEA)

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K to 12
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The International Technology Education Association (ITEA) is the professional organization for technology, innovation, design, and engineering educators. Their mission is to promote...more
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The International Technology Education Association (ITEA) is the professional organization for technology, innovation, design, and engineering educators. Their mission is to promote technological literacy for all by supporting the teaching of technology and promoting the professionalism of those engaged in this pursuit. ITEA strengthens the profession through state and national legislative efforts, professional development, membership services, publications, and classroom activities.

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NetSmartz Workshop - National Center for Missing & Exploited Children

Grades
K to 12
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Use this website to help students of all ages learn to be safe online and in the real world. Included are short video clips that are sure to catch ...more
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Use this website to help students of all ages learn to be safe online and in the real world. Included are short video clips that are sure to catch the student's interest along with plans for class discussions and activities. See the various topics under "choose an Issue" lower on the page. Activity cards and safety pledges are available in Spanish. There is a very rich collection of information here.

tag(s): internet safety (109), safety (92)

In the Classroom

If you know you will be using the Internet during class or assigning it for outside work, consider sharing some of the safety lessons ahead of time using a projector, especially with elementary and middle school students. Secondary English, information literacy, or computer teachers should consider requiring teens to report on an Internet safety topic as a research project as you are trying to both teach and USE research skills. This site could be a good topic-finder and starting point.

Provide a link on your teacher web page to give parents a resource for talking about Internet safety with their children at home. Bookmark this site on a classroom computer for students to visit when they have free time.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Google Guide - Google

Grades
5 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
Google has pulled together descriptions of how to use some of the new features available by just using the search box. In addition to searching and finding driving directions, ...more
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Google has pulled together descriptions of how to use some of the new features available by just using the search box. In addition to searching and finding driving directions, users can now check arrival times, do math problems, check the routes of packages, see travel conditions, obtain stock quotes, get definitions and more. At the bottom of the page, searchers can link to more shortcut offerings, including Google Guide's Cheat Sheet and Google Guide's Coffee page.

tag(s): stock market (13), weather (188)

In the Classroom

Show your students how to quickly find definitions and do simple math problems in an instant!

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Ways ESL/EFL Teachers Can Use Google.com - Charles Kelley

Grades
6 to 12
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Search like a librarian using the hints on this page! This re-do of a Google search page helps searchers know exactly what they're searching and what types of answers they ...more
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Search like a librarian using the hints on this page! This re-do of a Google search page helps searchers know exactly what they're searching and what types of answers they can expect to receive without understanding the complexity of Boolean search terms, etc. Especially valuable are tips on how to search precisely and, at the same time, avoid certain results such as bookstores or pages with only commercial intent. Use of the wildcard search "*" is explained so that it seems easy and useful. Searching sentences, phrases, and other collocations is simple after looking at this page. There is also a link to the original Google search page. Not only ESL teachers, but also all instructors looking for specific types of info will find ways to make their searches more fruitful and economical.

tag(s): search strategies (30)

In the Classroom

Show your high school students doing research how to use these search features to save time.

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