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Thrively - Thrively

Grades
1 to 12
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Thrively is a free tool that gives strengths and interests assessments in an engaging and entertaining way. Based on 23 factors and developed for children, you receive a profile that...more
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Thrively is a free tool that gives strengths and interests assessments in an engaging and entertaining way. Based on 23 factors and developed for children, you receive a profile that is personal, positive, and celebrates each child's core strengths and unique talents. Children, teachers, and parents all have a dashboard displaying activities and videos selected specifically for the child's strengths and interests. Explore a comprehensive activity index with over 120,000 activities and hundreds of videos designed to inspire. The videos feature interesting ideas, leaders, and a range of insights into careers and opportunities that are a good fit for the child's unique strengths. The Activity Boards are a way to discover and research the activities and collect them all in one place. If your district blocks YouTube, the videos may not be viewable. You could always view them at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): back to school (58), differentiation (47), multiple intelligences (11)

In the Classroom

Begin your school year with a more personal touch, by knowing what your students' interests are. On the teacher dashboard, examine each student and match interest to activities to differentiate instruction. Students can explore careers, apps, and activities matching their profile. With interest and strengths targeted, you can sail smoothly into a highly engaged class of individualized learning. During career explorations, open up worlds of possibilities for students and families to begin planning a successful path. Add a link to this tool to your class website for possible enrichment activities for families. Offer suggestions to parents for enriching after school activities found around your area.

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Television Archive News Search Service - TV News Archive

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5 to 12
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The Television Archive News Search Service is a comprehensive resource for finding news video clips from the United States and Great Britain. Scroll through to view clips by most popular...more
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The Television Archive News Search Service is a comprehensive resource for finding news video clips from the United States and Great Britain. Scroll through to view clips by most popular or sort by title, date, archived, or creator. Use the search bar to search by keywords for specific information. Choose any clip, and then choose any minute from the filmstrip to view clips.

tag(s): journalism (46), news (261)

In the Classroom

This site is ideal on an interactive whiteboard or projector, learning station, or on individual computers (with headsets). Provide students with a topic for a keyword search and allow them to explore on their own. Embed video clips into your class web page or view together on an interactive whiteboard as an anticipatory set or "activator" to introduce a unit or lesson.

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Johnny Appl - United Nations and Eden Projects

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6 to 12
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Johnny Appl is an online trivia activity that also helps fight deforestation in Haiti, Madagascar, and Ethiopia. For every activity played, a micro-donation is made to a tree planting...more
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Johnny Appl is an online trivia activity that also helps fight deforestation in Haiti, Madagascar, and Ethiopia. For every activity played, a micro-donation is made to a tree planting site benefiting local workers and the environment. Choose from quiz topics such as General Geography, What's That Mammal?, English Vocabulary, Flags of the World, Fruit Explorer, and MANY more. As you play, earn badges and view your personal Carbon Meter showing the amount of CO2 offset through your gameplay.

tag(s): animals (276), carbon footprint (11), environment (317), landmarks (26), trivia (17), vocabulary (324)

In the Classroom

Share Johnny Appl with students during any study of the environment. Create a link on your class web page and classroom computers for students to play. Record and display carbon savings as you work together as a class to earn money for planting trees.

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History/Social Science Resources - Los Angeles Unified School District

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K to 12
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The Los Angeles Unified School District offers a large selection of resources for teaching history and social sciences aligned to Common Core Standards. Choose from elementary, middle,...more
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The Los Angeles Unified School District offers a large selection of resources for teaching history and social sciences aligned to Common Core Standards. Choose from elementary, middle, or high school to find curriculum maps and lessons. One very useful portion of the site includes lessons created in partnership with Reading Like a Historian, reviewed here, that engage students in the creation of historical knowledge. Both sites are a must-visit for anyone teaching Social Studies!

tag(s): assessment (100), commoncore (94), professional development (123)

In the Classroom

Bookmark and save this site for use throughout the school year. Be sure to take advantage of the lesson plans and curriculum guides. Share with other teachers as you collaborate and plan together.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Easy Tweets - easytweets.net

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8 to 12
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Practice reading with real Tweets sorted by difficulty level with Easy Tweets. Choose easy, medium, or difficult and add a topic to receive a list of Tweets. Sorted using Cambridge...more
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Practice reading with real Tweets sorted by difficulty level with Easy Tweets. Choose easy, medium, or difficult and add a topic to receive a list of Tweets. Sorted using Cambridge University's English Vocabulary Profile Project, Tweets correspond to reading levels. Please note - Tweets are real Tweets and have not been monitored for content so you may want to preview results before sharing with students.

tag(s): chat (51), microblogging (44), twitter (50)

In the Classroom

Use Easy Tweets with ESL/ELL students as an authentic way to practice reading skills. Use to differentiate with different abilities of readers as you follow certain current events to learn more. Use Easy Tweets to model writing skills. Have students compare the differences between Tweets at different levels. Consider using this tool for finding Twitter information about possible people of interest (i.e. scientists, politicians, singers, actors), to follow. Looking for more ways to use Twitter in the classroom? Read more about Twitter at TeachersFirst's Twitter for Teachers page.

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O2 Internet Safety for Kids - O2 and NSPCC

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K to 12
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Provide kids with a safe online experience with tips and information from O2 Internet Safety for Kids. Choose from several different categories including meeting strangers online, online...more
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Provide kids with a safe online experience with tips and information from O2 Internet Safety for Kids. Choose from several different categories including meeting strangers online, online addiction, safe downloading, and more. Each category includes a short video and specific information about keeping kids safe online, including what to do if each proper behavior is compromised. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable. You could always view the videos at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube. The site was created in the UK, so some of the pronunciations and spellings may differ from those in American English.

tag(s): cyberbullying (43), digital citizenship (59)

In the Classroom

Although this site was created in the UK, the message is universal and information included is relevant to all classrooms, regardless of location. Include this site on your class webpage for students and parents to access as a reference. Use information from the site as part of your online safety lessons. Have students create an annotated image, including text boxes and related links using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here, to demonstrate online safety.

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Ice and Sky - Association Wild-Touch and Luc Jacquet

Grades
8 to 12
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Learn about the history of climate change through the scientific explorations of Claude Lorius. View the entire interactive as a slide show or use the menu to explore specific content...more
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Learn about the history of climate change through the scientific explorations of Claude Lorius. View the entire interactive as a slide show or use the menu to explore specific content such as Exploring Ancient Climates or Man Disrupts the Giants of Nature. The tutorial explains how to display and download related documents from the site. Add any screen to create a personalized lesson, or download and display documents from the Ice and Sky educational program. Downloads include videos and educational booklets. The site seems to work well on Chrome, and not as well on Safari.

tag(s): antarctica (29), climate change (64), slides (63), video (253), weather (188)

In the Classroom

Introduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students explore this site independently or in small groups. Challenge students to create a multimedia presentation on climate change using UTellStory, reviewed here. This tool allows for narrating and adding text to a picture. Challenge students to find a photo (legally permitted to use), and then narrate the photo as if it is a news report. Have students create a map (choose locations, add text, images, and videos to demonstrate the effect of climate change) using Tour Builder, reviewed here. Have students use Bio Cube, reviewed here, to create a biography about Claude Lorius.

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Reddit - Reddit.com

Grades
9 to 12
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Reddit democratizes news through voting on the headlines that matter to you. Though informative, it is not eye catching. Simply "upvote" or "downvote" a headline to bring it higher...more
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Reddit democratizes news through voting on the headlines that matter to you. Though informative, it is not eye catching. Simply "upvote" or "downvote" a headline to bring it higher (or lower) in the news column. Curate the best stuff on Reddit by creating a Subreddit. Note: New accounts are unable to make a Subreddit without time spent being active in the community. Search or view the various Subreddits for a topic of your choice. To make a Subreddit, choose "Create your own Subreddit." On the left-hand side are the boxes for your Subreddits (under the Multireddit label). Subscribe to various threads of interest through the subscribe button. As you subscribe to the threads, your Reddit page will change to show these subscriptions. Some threads are Ask Me Anything (AMA), and the poster will answer when you ask. As Reddit is Social Networking, be sure to look at the comments of others before sharing with students. Since you can curate your own topics, this may not be a major concern.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): microblogging (44), news (261), social networking (112)

In the Classroom

Use Reddit to show the uniqueness and value of topics by the upvotes and downvotes. Also discuss the thinking behind the upvotes and downvotes. Comments to the posts offer more detailed information to portions of the topic that can lead to different points of view, deeper analysis, and discussion of related topics. Since the average person and professionals use Reddit, students can ask a question to get crowdsourced answers such as "How to write a better term paper?" View the various topics that have high or poor ratings and determine whether rating is based upon facts or opinion. Students can find various topics for term papers or research by viewing the Reddit topics. Reddit is also popular for finding peer review journals and tutorials.

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Pantheon People Rankings - MIT Media Lab

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7 to 12
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Explore and discover the most influential people in history using Pantheon People Rankings. Prepare to be immersed in the many different features of this site. Search by period, country,...more
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Explore and discover the most influential people in history using Pantheon People Rankings. Prepare to be immersed in the many different features of this site. Search by period, country, or domain to view rankings of the most influential people in that category. Set search parameters using drop down boxes to the left of the chart. Hover over colored result boxes to view specific information for each result. Click on any individual name to get a short Wikipedia overview and ranking information.

tag(s): cultures (105), explorers (61), politics (99), scientists (69), sociology (22), sports (97)

In the Classroom

Bookmark this site for use throughout the year when looking for ideas for research projects, biographies, and more. Have students create a list of whom they think is most influential and compare their lists to the actual results. Use information to find the most influential people around the globe or throughout time. Have students create timelines (with music, photos, videos, and more) using Capzles, reviewed here.

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The Global Flow of Refugees - Nikola Sander & Ramon Bauer

Grades
7 to 12
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The Global Flow of Refugees offers an interactive look at refugee flows between countries during the past few years. It is based on a New York Times visualization. Choose a ...more
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The Global Flow of Refugees offers an interactive look at refugee flows between countries during the past few years. It is based on a New York Times visualization. Choose a year to view the complete flow circle for that year. Click any segment to narrow down information to individual countries showing the flow to or from that country. In addition to the interactive chart, scroll down further on the page to view two static versions of the chart featuring 50 selected countries.

tag(s): continents (50), countries (77), cross cultural understanding (115), immigrants (20)

In the Classroom

Share this site on a projector or interactive whiteboard to research and understand the flow of refugees throughout the world. Use this as an introduction to understanding complicated events in the Middle East and other volatile regions in the world. After viewing the interactive, have students study the regions for large migrations of refugees from one region to another. Have them share their findings with a multimedia presentation using one of the many TeachersFirst Edge tools reviewed here. Have students use Little Memory, reviewed here, to create a diary entry as a refugee traveling to a new country.

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GeaCron - The GeaCron Project

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6 to 12
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Explore the changing boundaries of the world's countries through maps and timelines found on GeaCron. Type in any date to view the shape of the world at that time. Click ...more
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Explore the changing boundaries of the world's countries through maps and timelines found on GeaCron. Type in any date to view the shape of the world at that time. Click the timeline link to search for period or event. Move the bar on the timeline to move through different time periods or change the look of the timeline to include more or less information using the + or - icons.
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tag(s): continents (50), countries (77), maps (288), timelines (62)

In the Classroom

Use GeaCron's maps and timelines for an excellent visualization of changing borders of countries throughout time. Have students compare and contrast world borders during any different period. If your class discusses current events, this would be an excellent tool to use to track the history of certain issues. Allow students to explore on their own and create an infographic to share their findings using Easel.ly, reviewed here.

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Five Myths - The Washington Post

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6 to 12
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Five Myths takes on everyday subjects and challenges widely held beliefs every time. For example, are panda bears really cuddly and gentle? Has technology really changed how we fight...more
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Five Myths takes on everyday subjects and challenges widely held beliefs every time. For example, are panda bears really cuddly and gentle? Has technology really changed how we fight wildfires? Each short article is written by a content expert and explores little-known facts to debunk commonly held beliefs.

tag(s): journalism (46), myths and legends (25)

In the Classroom

Share Five Myths on an interactive whiteboard or projector as an excellent starting point for lessons on the subjects included. Be sure to review comments on each section before sharing since they are unmoderated. After viewing the articles on this site, start a discussion about what students know about urban legends and Snopes. Have students research and find five myths for any topic, then create a simple infographic sharing their findings using Easel.ly, reviewed here.

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Heatmap News - Heatmap News

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7 to 12
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Heatmap News provides a quick look at the latest world news using hotspots and news provided by Google News and Google Earth Maps. Click on any of the hotspots to ...more
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Heatmap News provides a quick look at the latest world news using hotspots and news provided by Google News and Google Earth Maps. Click on any of the hotspots to read short articles about events in that area. Use the drop-down box labeled Date to include only the last hour, today, this week, or any date back to August 18, 2014.

tag(s): journalism (46), news (261)

In the Classroom

Share Heatmap News on an interactive whiteboard or projector as part of any current events lessons. Create a link to this site on your class website and have students find news and then research to learn more about an event. A side benefit of using Heatmap News for your current events is that students will become more knowledgeable about world geography. Challenge students to use a tool such as Zeemaps, reviewed here, to create a map with images and an audio recording for what they learned about an event where the story takes place. Students can add details for news from around the world.

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Celebrate Pi Day - NBC Learn

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5 to 12
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Celebrate Pi Day (or any day) with this collection of 9 video stories and accompanying activities. Taken from NBC news stories, each short video includes an opportunity to apply math...more
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Celebrate Pi Day (or any day) with this collection of 9 video stories and accompanying activities. Taken from NBC news stories, each short video includes an opportunity to apply math concepts to real world situations. Use tabs on the side of each video to view a transcript or suggested math and statistics activities relating to the topic.

tag(s): journalism (46), news (261), pi (22), problem solving (272), statistics (122), video (253)

In the Classroom

Stash this site in your bag of tricks for when you need an easy to teach lesson for a teacher in training or a substitute teacher. Use the videos as inspiration for finding math in other news stories. Have students find videos and create their own math and statistics questions for classmates to answer.

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Jellybean Scoop - Jellybean Scoop

Grades
1 to 10
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Use the news and improve reading scores. Jellybean Scoop offers different news articles, written daily, at four different Lexile reading levels. Levels for articles are Starter, Single,...more
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Use the news and improve reading scores. Jellybean Scoop offers different news articles, written daily, at four different Lexile reading levels. Levels for articles are Starter, Single, Double, and Triple. Find articles in categories of World News, Nature and Science, Odd News, Inspiration and Health, and Fun Facts. Each story has an audio recording and the ability to record yourself reading it. Find activities such as vocabulary, sentence scramble, and a quiz. See the many Demo Videos to really understand the powerful features on Jellybean Scoop. If your district blocks YouTube, the videos may not be viewable. You could always view the videos at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): audio books (32), DAT device agnostic tool (199), differentiation (47), news (261), reading comprehension (116), sound (101)

In the Classroom

Achieve three goals here: differentiate, help students improve their reading comprehension, and keep students current with what is happening in our nation and the world. When assigning articles, choose to have the class read at one reading level, or choose individuals and set the reading level for them. Set up different articles at different learning stations on the computers in your room. Since Jellybean Scoop is cloud based, even absent students can complete the missed work easily. Teachers of gifted students can use this site to accelerate or enrich reading for students. Teachers of Learning Support students and ESL/ELL students will love this alternate way for their students to meet current events requirements. Teachers with free accounts can have up to 25 students. If you have a larger class, there is a "work around" for this. If you have a Gmail account, you can add subaccounts (see directions to do this here). You could create another Jellybean account with this subaccount, but you would end up with two different accounts on Jellybean Scoop.

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Global Trend Map - Paul Bourke

Grades
6 to 12
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Discover what is trending on Google with the interactive Global Trend Map. Use the drop down box to choose a country and change the visual appearance of the map if ...more
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Discover what is trending on Google with the interactive Global Trend Map. Use the drop down box to choose a country and change the visual appearance of the map if desired. The top Google searches for that country appear in a list with the top trend written across the chosen country. Click the Translate button to translate into English. Get the embed code to share this on your website or blog.

tag(s): cross cultural understanding (115), maps (288), news (261)

In the Classroom

This site is excellent for enrichment during current events lessons. World language classes can keep up with hot topics in the countries where the language they are learning is spoken. Include this link on your class web page for students to access both in and out of class. Challenge students to compare and contrast trends across different countries using an online tool such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram, reviewed here. Have students create a presentation on any of the trending topics using Swipe, reviewed here.

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Scaling Everest - Washington Post-Richard Johnson, Bonnie Berkowitz, Lazaro Gamio

Grades
6 to 12
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Climb the icy path of Everest's most popular route as you experience this journey from the mountain base up to the summit. Scroll up to discover the height of Everest ...more
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Climb the icy path of Everest's most popular route as you experience this journey from the mountain base up to the summit. Scroll up to discover the height of Everest compared to familiar buildings. Learn about animals found on the way up to the summit, read fast facts, and listen to an audio of those who have made this strenuous climb. Read the related news story and learn how climbs will now be different from those in the past.

tag(s): field trips (12), mountains (13), virtual field trips (48)

In the Classroom

Use this site as an activator, introducing the topic of Mt. Everest, Nepal, or the Himalayas. This website would benefit a Geography class, exploring the significance of the Himalayas while simultaneously studying the geographic forces that made the mountain chain. Have students create timelines of a Mount Everest adventure (with music, photos, videos, and more) using Capzles, reviewed here. Have students use Fakebook, reviewed here, to create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook about climbing Mount Everest from the perspective of the climber or a Sherpa guide. This is perfect informational reading (with images and charts) to meet Common Core Standards.

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Teaching and Learning for a Sustainable Future - UNESCO

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6 to 12
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Make a difference in students' lives and the world as you practice teaching and learning for a sustainable future. This site includes a teacher education program focused on the many...more
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Make a difference in students' lives and the world as you practice teaching and learning for a sustainable future. This site includes a teacher education program focused on the many aspects of a sustainable future and directing education to meet these needs. The first five modules provide background knowledge for the global challenges and need for education to address these problems. The topics include exploring global realities, understanding sustainable development, future perspectives, reorienting education for a sustainable future, and accepting the challenge. The next four modules illustrate ways to integrate these themes into your curriculum. The next nine interdisciplinary modules explore how to form a sustainable future. Find areas such as culture and religion, indigenous knowledge, women, population, world hunger, agriculture, tourism, communities, globalization, and climate change. There are resources and lesson plans for experiential learning, storytelling, values education, inquiry learning assessment, future problem-solving, learning outside the classroom, and community problem solving. See sections that provide explanations, characteristics, analyzation, and reflections to help you effectively integrate these classroom teaching practices into your curriculum.

tag(s): cross cultural understanding (115), cultures (105), debate (41), problem solving (272), sustainability (19)

In the Classroom

Connect students globally with challenges that people face around the world. Begin by building your knowledge with the activities and resources provided. Continue by choosing different areas to explore as a class, in small groups, or individually. These activities can become a focal point of problem-based learning scenarios. Consider viewing Google Lit Trips, reviewed here, and challenge students to create a "sustainable earth" trip. Document areas on the globe with videos, images, and text that you and students find. Add a link to Pinterest, reviewed here, to have an ongoing brainstorming session of all possible solutions. Use parts of the site to begin a Global Connections Club either in class or after school. Students can share a Google doc or wiki to foster group collaboration. Not comfortable with wikis? Check out the TeachersFirst Wiki Walk-Through. Focus on problem solving by sharing parts of Teaching and Learning for a Sustainable Future. Teach debate through the different sides of the issues presented. During current events, engage students in saving our most valuable resource, our Earth. Use as a nonfiction passage for close reading. Have students take information research further, and present to others in a different format. Begin a blog for each student to share reflections. Create a newspaper using a site such as Zinepal, reviewed here. Use at a community night to promote awareness of the need for sustainability in your community.
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Think Before You Link - Discovery Education

Grades
1 to 12
2 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Empower your students with Think Before You Link In School by Intel and Discovery Education. Encourage safe, smart, and good digital citizenship in your classroom. Modules offer lessons...more
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Empower your students with Think Before You Link In School by Intel and Discovery Education. Encourage safe, smart, and good digital citizenship in your classroom. Modules offer lessons in cybersafety, cybersecuriuty, and cyberethics. In the educator section, find resource guides for the lessons. Additional tips include Think Before You Link Online Tips, Family Safety Blog, Parent Tips, Activities for Kids, and a link to the National Cyber Security Alliance. The toolkit includes word documents to include in emails to parents, newsletters, social media, frequently asked questions, a banner, and a Think Before You Link logo. Occasionally this site offers sweepstakes for prizes. Sign up for the latest updates.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): digital citizenship (59), internet safety (109)

In the Classroom

Use Think Before You Link at the beginning of the school year to review the most important lessons you can give to students, safety and good digital citizenship! In this manner, you can refer back to these lessons when needed. The beginning of the year Acceptable Use policies students sign, will be more meaningful and relevant. Be sure to give to parents to help educate them on ethics and safety. Feature at a "Tech it Out Night" for a timely reminder. Give students similar topics on healthy digital citizenship and digital safety and let them design their own multimedia presentation using Slideshow, reviewed here.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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4 News Wall - Channel 4 Television News (UK)

Grades
6 to 12
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4 News Wall presents the latest news condensed into animated GIFs. Each thumbnail also includes an animated title. Click the image to open and read the news story. Scroll through ...more
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4 News Wall presents the latest news condensed into animated GIFs. Each thumbnail also includes an animated title. Click the image to open and read the news story. Scroll through the site to view previous stories or click a date to highlight that day's news. The site was created in the UK, so some of the pronunciations and spellings may differ from those in American English.

tag(s): images (266), journalism (46), news (261)

In the Classroom

Use the 4 News Wall as a quick and catchy way to capture student interest in world news. Although this is a UK site, news stories are from around the world and offer a variety of interesting topics for any classroom. Have students choose an article, then research how that information was presented by the US media or in other countries. Use this site as an example, and have students create animated GIFs as part of any multimedia project. Use the GIF Maker, reviewed here, to create and share images.

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