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IbisEye Hurricane Tracking - Herald Tribune

Grades
6 to 12
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Here's an elegant hurricane tracking resource that provides both current hurricane data and historical tracks, complete with damage totals. The site also shows current weather alerts...more
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Here's an elegant hurricane tracking resource that provides both current hurricane data and historical tracks, complete with damage totals. The site also shows current weather alerts and other storm-planning information.

tag(s): weather (188)

In the Classroom

This is a marvelous hurricane teaching tool. It's unclear, however, whether the site will be a reliable resource for real-time disaster response.
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The Basics of Fusion - Princeton

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6 to 12
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In May, 2006, an unusual international consortium signed a treaty that could lead to the eventual construction of the world's first commercial fusion reactor. With it would come the...more
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In May, 2006, an unusual international consortium signed a treaty that could lead to the eventual construction of the world's first commercial fusion reactor. With it would come the key to almost limitless energy. This backgrounder from a similar European consortium provides a much more basic introduction to how fusion works and why it presents such a challenge.

tag(s): energy (198), nuclear energy (24)

In the Classroom

In addition to its obvious applications in physics, this issue could have widespread economic and environmental implications. There are lots of "What if..." questions you could develop around this one.

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Losing Louisiana

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7 to 12
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Examine the current situation in Louisiana - a region still struggling to recover from the devastating effects of hurricane Katrina - through the lens of this compelling site. Visitors...more
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Examine the current situation in Louisiana - a region still struggling to recover from the devastating effects of hurricane Katrina - through the lens of this compelling site. Visitors are greeted with a beautifully designed introduction that leads to an interactive aerial view of the affected area. Click on a number of locations to explore photographs and audio segments featuring interviews with coastal restoration experts as well as residents who were directly affected by the hurricane.

tag(s): hurricanes (35), louisiana (11), wetlands (9)

In the Classroom

Everyone has heard about the catastrophic damage that occurred in New Orleans, yet these images show the full extent of the damage - even months after the event. This site provides some great 360 degrees visual imagery of the damage, as well as provides information about the levees and the flooding history/subsidence in new Orleans. There is also a great landloss map that shows the loss Louisiana has faced, dating back to 1932. This would be a great learning center or classroom activity in a cultural geography, US history or US government class. Have students research and explore the site, and use it as a starting point for a class discussion to the events, the impact, and ultimately the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. This could also be a great way to lead into a lesson about government aid and interventions in times of crises!
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You Think! - World Bank

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6 to 8
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Delve into global issues with this outstanding site that explores topics like education, conflict, nutrition, the environment, and more, within the context of what matters to kids....more
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Delve into global issues with this outstanding site that explores topics like education, conflict, nutrition, the environment, and more, within the context of what matters to kids. Students can read factual summaries of the problems then investigate the related photographs, videos, galleries, and games. Click on the "Issues" link to view all available topics. Includes downloadable materials for teachers.

tag(s): air (163)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of the free ideas and classroom guides provided in the "4teachers" section. This would be a useful accompaniment to a government or Geography class.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Science Update Podcasts - American Association for the Advancement of Science

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6 to 12
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Head to this site to subscribe to a free, weekly podcast on interesting news and developments in all areas of science. These weekly audio files run 3-5 minutes each. While ...more
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Head to this site to subscribe to a free, weekly podcast on interesting news and developments in all areas of science. These weekly audio files run 3-5 minutes each. While not designed specifically for instructional use, they provide current science news in an easily accessible format.

tag(s): news (261)

In the Classroom

Try this one for your own professional development, or play it in science class as students are getting settled in for their class period.

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Grading on a Curve - New York Times

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6 to 12
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Just how effective are the six key issues of President Bush's domestic agenda? This lesson gives students a chance to assume the role of political analyst as they critically examine...more
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Just how effective are the six key issues of President Bush's domestic agenda? This lesson gives students a chance to assume the role of political analyst as they critically examine the Bush administration. The goal is to create a report card addressing the efficacy of selected domestic topics. Includes suggestions for interdisciplinary activities and projects. Aligned to standards.

tag(s): foreign policy (16), presidents (131)

In the Classroom

Though a bit outdated for a current events class, this would be a great lesson in a US government class looking at the Presidency of George H.W. Bush. Save this lesson as a favorite on your desktop to allow for easy retrieval later on - though be sure to look closely at the lesson and make sure that students have learned enough of the contextual information to be able to make sense of the article. For differentiation, peruse the article before-hand, creating a list of words that students may have trouble with or may not be familiar with. Create a follow-along for the article, defining those words selected to help students as they read. This will allow lower achieving readers to be able to process the information more efficiently and with more comprehension.

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Avian Influenza: What You Should Know - U.S. Centers for Disease Control

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6 to 12
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The CDC's home page for information on "bird flu" (avian influenza) offers a variety of content written at an adult level, including basic fact sheets, current outbreak updates, etc....more
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The CDC's home page for information on "bird flu" (avian influenza) offers a variety of content written at an adult level, including basic fact sheets, current outbreak updates, etc. Used selectively, this information offers an authoritative look at the evolution of this new disease and the international response to its spread.

tag(s): diseases (66)

In the Classroom

Use this site as an introduction to the avian flu during the seemingly always present flu-season. Have students explore the site in cooperative learning group with the intentions of finding three things that they can do to prevent themselves from getting the flu, or what the government is doing to prevent a spread. Have students create a short presentation with the information, making online posters that summarizes their findings. Use an online poster creator, such as Padlet (reviewed here). This would be great in a Health class, or in a government class studying government responses during crises or the impact of globalization.

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John Roberts Nominated as Chief Justice - NPR

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6 to 12
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NPR's collection of stories about the Roberts nomination includes background on his career, a look at the confirmation process, and discussions of Roberts and the rare opportunity to...more
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NPR's collection of stories about the Roberts nomination includes background on his career, a look at the confirmation process, and discussions of Roberts and the rare opportunity to fill two court vacancies. Useful for individual or group use.

tag(s): senate (9), supreme court (22)

In the Classroom

Though there have been judges nominated and appointed more recently than Roberts, this site provides some excellent information that makes it a great resource for a lesson on judicial nominations. Use this site as a hands-on activity after a class discussion or lecture on the topic. Have cooperative learning groups explore the site with the intentions of showing how Roberts moved through the processes to become a judge. Have students create graphic organizers or concept maps demonstrating the process. Use a tool such as bubbl.us (reviewed here) to create and share the concept maps.

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2004 - The Year in Pictures - New York Times

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6 to 12
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The Times' review of 2004 includes some of the most powerful images from the past 12 months. While there's nothing here that hasn't already been published, teachers may want to ...more
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The Times' review of 2004 includes some of the most powerful images from the past 12 months. While there's nothing here that hasn't already been published, teachers may want to exercise some discretion with the images from the war in Iraq.

In the Classroom

Whether studying the War in Iraq or the election campaign, use these images to create a visual discovery activity to preface a lecture or classroom discussion on either. Select 3-5 images from this site, choosing the most powerful and moving images. Placing the images on individual slides, allow students 1-2 minutes to observe each image. During that time period, students should be taking notes based on what they observe, predict and infer about each image. The more powerful and detailed the image is, the more information students can take out. After the class has observed all the chosen images, have a class discussion based on the notes students took. This is a great way to introduce content in a way that gets students thinking, as well as avoiding the typical lecture format.
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2004 in review - CNN

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6 to 12
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CNN's annual review page includes fewer photos than many others, but it adds links to stories and expanded coverage about various events. There's a heavy focus on domestic US events....more
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CNN's annual review page includes fewer photos than many others, but it adds links to stories and expanded coverage about various events. There's a heavy focus on domestic US events.

In the Classroom

Though outdated for current events, use this site as a time capsule to iterate for students the political climate of 2004 when studying the now historic election. Introduce the site on the interactive whiteboard, showing students the context of the environment before studying the events that transpired. Great for a US government class!
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Day In Pictures - Reuters

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4 to 12
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Reuters' new photo service offers several image collections, including a review of every week and month. Users will need to scroll down the page a bit to find it, but ...more
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Reuters' new photo service offers several image collections, including a review of every week and month. Users will need to scroll down the page a bit to find it, but the images are striking, covering a wide variety of issues and events.

In the Classroom

Use these images as writing prompts in an English or government classroom focused on providing real-world examples. Post an image on the interactive whiteboard or projector and have students respond to the image by a specific written format, or to the content presented in the picture. This is a great way to provide a face to the content being learned in a government class, or to help students stretch their imaginations with new prompts in an English class.
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Mount St. Helen's Teacher's Corner - National Park Service

Grades
6 to 12
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Here's a collection of resources that teachers can use to help students understand the effects of an active volcano on the surrounding habitats. You'll also find a nice collection of...more
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Here's a collection of resources that teachers can use to help students understand the effects of an active volcano on the surrounding habitats. You'll also find a nice collection of information on the history of the volcano itself. Worth a visit if you're planning a unit on volcanoes or national forests.

tag(s): forests (29), volcanoes (61)

In the Classroom

Science teachers will love all the summary tables and resources offered on this site. In teaching about Mt St. Helens, many of the summary tables can actually be cleared and printed to allow students to use them as a graphic organizer to follow along a lecture. This site is also great for refreshing the events of that day as well as the volcanic history of the mountain. Save this site as a favorite on your classroom computer for easy reference.

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Genesis: Search for Origins - NASA

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5 to 12
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Despite its untimely crash to earth, the Genesis spaceship still managed to bring back tiny samplings of raw material from the sun for eager scientists to analyze. This site provides...more
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Despite its untimely crash to earth, the Genesis spaceship still managed to bring back tiny samplings of raw material from the sun for eager scientists to analyze. This site provides an overview of the entire mission, video clips, photographs, and descriptions of the processes scientists are using to investigate the Genesis canister and its contents. Younger students will enjoy the interactive games and activities related to the mission and follow-up investigation by NASA. Be sure to check out the Creator's Kitchen for teacher resources and suggestions.

tag(s): nasa (39), solar system (119), space (205), sun (71)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of the free lesson plans and classroom activities hosted on this site! Use the simulations to teach students about space, space travel, even elements. Great for science teachers of almost all grades!
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Scared of Cyber-Bullies? - CBS News

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1 to 12
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School bullying has taken a high-tech twist. This CBS article, with accompanying video and interactive features, describes this alarming trend and provides information for parents and...more
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School bullying has taken a high-tech twist. This CBS article, with accompanying video and interactive features, describes this alarming trend and provides information for parents and teachers on how to protect children and teens from cyber crime.

tag(s): bullying (52), safety (92)

In the Classroom

Though short, this article provides teachers and parents with an awareness as to the extent that cyber bullying can go. Discuss with students the consequences of online-bullying, and use this article to show the effects it can have on it's victims.Encourage students to bring the article home to parents, or take the middle man out and post it on a teacher wiki or webpage to allow parents instance access. This would be an appropriate prerequisite before a project that requires virtual interaction, such as googledocs, (reviewed here), or any other online classroom resource.

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Acronym Finder - Mountain Data

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6 to 12
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How often do your students come across unfamiliar acronyms related to current events, science, or computer technology? These pesky words and abbreviations can be a major source of confusion,...more
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How often do your students come across unfamiliar acronyms related to current events, science, or computer technology? These pesky words and abbreviations can be a major source of confusion, but this site helps make sense of the often overwhelming jungle of acronyms. Enter the acronym in question, and be rewarded with a complete list of definitions with links to more specific explanations. The site even addresses slang and "chat" acronyms that are used frequently by kids, but may mystify many teachers!

tag(s): slang (15)

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Adventures of Cyberbee

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1 to 12
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Library specialist Linda C. Joseph has assembled a useful, interactive, and entertaining collection of resources for students and teachers. Use the "primary source of the month" feature...more
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Library specialist Linda C. Joseph has assembled a useful, interactive, and entertaining collection of resources for students and teachers. Use the "primary source of the month" feature to spark discussions about why such a resource is so valuable. Links to Web treasure hunts, projects, and helpful how-to advice on a variety of Internet-related topics are included.

tag(s): resources (112)

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Frontline World - PBS

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6 to 12
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This site from the PBS Frontline series offers regular reports, video, and images that are extended versions of earlier video reporting. Topics vary, and the editorial slant is not...more
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This site from the PBS Frontline series offers regular reports, video, and images that are extended versions of earlier video reporting. Topics vary, and the editorial slant is not often without its own point of view. That said, the content can be good for getting students to answer the question, "What do you think?"

tag(s): news (261)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of these free lesson plans and classroom activities that incorporate math into various liberal art subjects! This is a great way to incorporate interest from all types of learners and in some situations, make the topic easier to understand.

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Lesson Plans from the State Department - U.S. State Department

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6 to 12
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The U.S. State Department offers a surprisingly rich collection of lesson plans and related information about American history and foreign policy, past and present. The units on Vietnam...more
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The U.S. State Department offers a surprisingly rich collection of lesson plans and related information about American history and foreign policy, past and present. The units on Vietnam and the Cuban missile crisis look particularly interesting.

tag(s): cultures (105), foreign policy (16)

In the Classroom

There's a wealth of information here; teachers will need to examine it closely to see how it might fit into secondary government or history curricula.
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Who's Who in Post-War Iraq - BBC

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6 to 12
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BBC's presentation on the key players in today's Iraq will help teachers and students sort out both the individuals and the many movements and factions that are now vying for ...more
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BBC's presentation on the key players in today's Iraq will help teachers and students sort out both the individuals and the many movements and factions that are now vying for influence in that nation. This one would make a great backgrounder for a discussion on balancing power in Iraq in the effort to build a democratic government there.

tag(s): iraq (32)

In the Classroom

Use this site as a learning center or station during a unit on the War on Terror and the fighting in the Middle East. Because there is a lot of information on this site, this activity works best with a follow-along or guide to highlight for students what's most important. For help creating easy graphic organizers, we recommend using Graphic Organizer Maker, (reviewed here).
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Beyond the War in Iraq - NPR

Grades
6 to 12
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National Public Radio's web content about the ongoing rebuilding efforts in Iraq offers a nice blend of interviews, factual reporting, and images from the scene. There's an emphasis...more
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National Public Radio's web content about the ongoing rebuilding efforts in Iraq offers a nice blend of interviews, factual reporting, and images from the scene. There's an emphasis on political, economic, cultural, and military issues and their relationships with one another. Try this one as a starting point for an in-depth current events discussion.

tag(s): iraq (32)

In the Classroom

Use this site as a resource for a class discussion on the effects of the Iraq war on both US soldiers and Iraqi civilians. Introduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students explore this site independently or in small groups. This allows students to prepare for a class discussion adequately. This would be a great resource for a US government or history class.
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