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KS3 Bitesize - BBC

Grades
5 to 9
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Pick your subject for Keystage 3, roughly equivalent to grades 6-8 in the U.S. (English, Math, or Science anyone?) Find interactive activities and lessons in a variety of topics in...more
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Pick your subject for Keystage 3, roughly equivalent to grades 6-8 in the U.S. (English, Math, or Science anyone?) Find interactive activities and lessons in a variety of topics in each subject area. At the end of each lesson is a review that recaps the main points. In the English section you will find Reading, Writing, Speaking, Listening, and Shakespeare. The Math section features Numbers (basic arithmetic), Algebra, Handling Data, Measurement, Shapes, and Space. Science includes Organisms, Behavior, Health, Chemical and Material Behavior, Energy, Electricity, Force, The Universe, Environment, and Earth. Within each area there are interactives, tests, and review (referred to as revise at this site, created in the UK). There are also specific activities within each of the categories, educational "games," and message boards. Use of the message boards requires registration but it is not required to use the other materials.

tag(s): data (148), measurement (159), shakespeare (131), space (205), symmetry (55)

In the Classroom

From Life Processes to Solids, Liquids, and Gases in Science, Orders of Operation to Probability in Math, and Writing Structure to Shakespeare in English, find a topic for any material you are covering. Share the interactive (or other sections) on your projector or interactive whiteboard). Provide this link on your class website for students to use to practice both in and out of the classroom. After viewing a topic, brainstorm the main points together as a class and use the information on additional problems or interactives within the classroom.
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When Weather Changed History - The Weather Channel

Grades
4 to 12
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Weather's impact on the course of history sometimes goes unnoticed. A heat wave brings about public policy change; a hurricane alerts the public to the need for better planning and...more
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Weather's impact on the course of history sometimes goes unnoticed. A heat wave brings about public policy change; a hurricane alerts the public to the need for better planning and an improved safety net; a father of our country dies due to extreme weather. This collection of full episodes and a few with shorter "preview" clips from the Weather Channel's regular series is ideal for use in the classroom to help students make connections between climate, geography, and history. The collection includes more obvious events such as Hurricane Katrina as well as numerous others: heat waves, George Washington, the Hindenburg, American colonial times, Nagasaki, D-Day, the Dust Bowl, smog, the Titanic, the Nome Serum Run and the green movement in the wake of tornado devastation. The video makes the events more real while the narration places then in context.

tag(s): climate (92), disasters (39), weather (188)

In the Classroom

Share one or more clips (selected from a full episode) on a projector or interactive whiteboard as part of your study of a time period in history or assign students to research different events, asking them to answer big questions such as, "What role does climate play in a community's growth and government?" or "What might have happened if the weather had been different on this day?" Have students write a blog post as an eyewitness to the events or create a class wiki on the impact of geography, climate, and other "earthly" factors on the decisions that humans make. Create one wiki page per event and assign small groups to write the pages as newspaper articles at the time and another page using historical perspective. Don't forget to add mock news pages about what might have happened if the weather had been different! Not comfortable with wikis? Have no wiki worries - check out TeachersFirst's Wiki Walk-Through. The same assignment could also be done on video as a series of podcast "news" stories. Use a site such as PodOmatic (reviewed here).

Use these videos as part of your science study of weather so students relate the hard data to human events. Have students use a multi-angle approach using both scientific data and human data about the event to create a weather wiki or multimedia project such as mock interviews at the time of the event and ten years later.
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How to Grow a Worm Farm - Museum of Science and Industry

Grades
2 to 9
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This site offers instructions on how to create a worm farm. The materials are everyday items that are inexpensive. The instructions are clear and easy to follow. The project itself...more
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This site offers instructions on how to create a worm farm. The materials are everyday items that are inexpensive. The instructions are clear and easy to follow. The project itself appeals to the "gross" factor that students love. Worms are easy to control and pose little threat in the classroom and observing them move through ground is entertaining for all.

tag(s): inquiry (37), worms (5)

In the Classroom

The worm farm could be created in class. For younger students, it could be a classroom project where students are in charge of care and making observations of the worms. Older students could be shown a teacher model of the worm farm, and discuss what conditions could be changed which would start an inquiry project. This could lead to students creating experiment plans and carrying out their own ideas in class or at home. Students could also discuss soil and the relationship between the living and non-living things in the soil or even in an ecosystem. Have students create videos of the worm farms and narrate the videos with what they learned through inquiry and investigation. Use a video sharing tool such as SchoolTube reviewed here.

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Study Stack - John Weidner

Grades
4 to 12
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This site is filled with study tools to help students learn information in a variety of subject areas. Stacks of topics related to geography, history, math, languages, medical, tests...more
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This site is filled with study tools to help students learn information in a variety of subject areas. Stacks of topics related to geography, history, math, languages, medical, tests (SAT, ACT, etc.), science and more are linked with collections of learning tools that include virtual study cards, matching games, word search puzzles, and hangman games. There really is something here for nearly all subject areas and grade levels! Students can select the tool that works best for them and work at their own pace until they are satisfied with their progress. If you can't find a stack to fit your needs, you can edit existing lists or create customized study stacks. The site also allows you to print out study cards, or export flash cards to study them via cell phones, PDA, or iPod. Email the stacks to peers or connect with Study Stack through Facebook. Some of the activities require Java. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): flash cards (45), greek (41), hebrew (14), latin (22), test prep (95), vocabulary (323)

In the Classroom

Encourage parents to use this site as a study-at-home tool for their students. Link your blog or website to this site by entering your url at the bottom of the homepage. Make sure your guidance counselor at your school is aware of this site as a tool for studying those college entrance tests. Be sure to save this site in your favorites.

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Science News for Kids - Society for Science and the Public

Grades
3 to 12
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Kid-friendly science articles to intrigue all ages fill this freshly-redesigned site. Browse menus for illustrated news articles on "Atoms and Forces, " "Earth and Sky," " Humans and...more
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Kid-friendly science articles to intrigue all ages fill this freshly-redesigned site. Browse menus for illustrated news articles on "Atoms and Forces, " "Earth and Sky," " Humans and Health," "Life" or "Tech and Math." A feature article, scientist, and "in the news" items splash across the home page to draw interest. Many articles list "POWER WORDS" at the end, highlighting terms and definitions used within that article. The page layouts and whitespace make the online articles uncluttered and legible. The site has reorganized into a structure that roughly parallels school curriculum, so it is even easier to find articles connected to specific science areas.

tag(s): agriculture (55), animals (276), computers (95), dinosaurs (57), engineering (125), environment (317), news (261), nutrition (154), weather (188)

In the Classroom

Use Science News for Kids as a great reading and reporting assignment. Weaker readers will need a reading buddy for some of the more challenging article. Classes in lower grades will want to read the articles together. A quick check on one article using Juicy Studio's Readability test (reviewed here) provided an approximate grade level of 6.5. Check articles before assigning to elementary students. Students can find an article of interest to read, summarize, and report to the class as part of a Science in My World unit or regular science current events activity. Have students create commercials about their topics. Video and share using a site such as SchoolTube reviewed here. Students can use these news articles to find additional relevant information on the internet. Students may find these topics to be great independent study topics. Teach reading comprehension using these factual articles on your interactive whiteboard, asking students to highlight key words and generate a "main idea" sentence using them. Articles offer ideal practice for informational reading questions on high-stakes reading tests.

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Teaching with Historic Places - National Park Service

Grades
4 to 12
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Do you have trouble finding suitable sites to teach state history for YOUR state? This site includes more than 130 "ready to go" lesson plans organized by state. You can ...more
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Do you have trouble finding suitable sites to teach state history for YOUR state? This site includes more than 130 "ready to go" lesson plans organized by state. You can also view the collection by states, social studies standards, U.S. History standards, specific skills, time period, or topic. This resource was pulled together by the National Park service. The specific topics vary from America's Space Program to Skagway: Gateway to the Klondike to Brown v. Board of Education to The Trail of Tears to Pearl Harbor to Lewis and Clark to the construction of the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal and countless others. Check out what it highlights for your state.

tag(s): cities (25), inventors and inventions (99), landmarks (26), maps (287), states (162)

In the Classroom

Search for your state and see what this site has to offer. Looking for a specific topic (i.e. Civil War or Pearl Harbor), search using topics. Take advantage of these ready to go lesson plans. Infuse your lessons with technology by creating a class wiki about the lesson/topic being discussed. Maybe make a wiki guidebook to your state. Not comfortable with wikis? Have no wiki worries - check out the TeachersFirst's Wiki Walk-Through. Save this site in your favorites, and check back as you plan throughout the year.

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All my faves - All my faves

Grades
4 to 12
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Not sure what sites exist for your topic? Start here and find sites listed by icon for Art, Encyclopedia, History, Languages, Science, Writing skills, Music, and numerous other topics....more
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Not sure what sites exist for your topic? Start here and find sites listed by icon for Art, Encyclopedia, History, Languages, Science, Writing skills, Music, and numerous other topics. Whether you are searching for research information, enrichment, or tutorials - check out this site. Notice that TeachersFirst is among the "faves" for teaching!

tag(s): dictionaries (56), literature (275)

In the Classroom

Why search for these sites, when the links can all be found in one place? Use this site in combination with TeachersFirst's rich reviews. Students can use these links as a springboard to research and projects. Be sure to save this site in your personal favorites! There is a lot to explore. List this site on your class website and/or wiki for students to access both in and out of the classroom.

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Solar Symphony Game: Sounds of the Solar System - Discovery Channel

Grades
3 to 12
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This visually exciting site offers both background information on the planets and a unique way for students to remember the order of the planets. To play the game, students hit ...more
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This visually exciting site offers both background information on the planets and a unique way for students to remember the order of the planets. To play the game, students hit the letter key that corresponds to the beginning letter of the planet name whenever the planet, rotating around the sun, hits the "hot zone." The music, flashing lights, planetary movement, and other effects make this activity extremely engaging. Students will love the excitement of this game so much they will not even know they are learning something! This site is up to date (Pluto is not included). Gustav Holst's famous composition, The Planets serves as the musical accompaniment! The site has some minor advertisements.

tag(s): planets (123), solar system (119)

In the Classroom

Share HOW to use this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students try out the site on individual computers. Make sure you provide headsets! Be sure to list this site on your class website, blog, or wiki for students to use as a review for their study of planet names, solar system planet order, and speed of rotation. Music teachers can use this site as an example of musical description as students explore the planets. Be sure to turn up the speakers!
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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ePals - ePals, Inc.

Grades
2 to 12
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ePals, a global community, offers students the chance to connect with other students around the world (200+ countries). The free student email feature is one of the most useful features...more
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ePals, a global community, offers students the chance to connect with other students around the world (200+ countries). The free student email feature is one of the most useful features of ePals, since complete teacher moderation is available. You may be able to convince a more conservative school administration to permit student email using this tool. This site is the largest worldwide community for global collaboration. Don't worry about the language barrier, there is built-in language translation! This content-rich site also offers lessons, interactives, printables, and more. The "Focus Areas" include Biodiversity, Black History, Election/Inauguration, Geography Central, and Human Rights. In addition, you can click on the "Projects" link to find several ready to use projects (Habitats, Maps, Natural Disasters, Water, and others). Click on "ePals Tour" to view an informative video clip about the site, downloadable brochures, and more.

tag(s): black history (59), disasters (39), environment (317), habitats (84), maps (287), natural disasters (20), water (130)

In the Classroom

Navigating this site is rather simple. Simply click on one of the tabs across the top of the website: Home, Focus Areas, Projects, Connect, Forums, How-To, and ePal Tours. Parts of this site require log-in. Registration does require an email address. The site does offer SchoolMail, the leader for FREE "kid-safe" email.

A lot of safety features are already put into place at this site. The SchoolMail (email service offered at this site) offers monitored mail, instant translations, spell-check, anti-spam filters, and virus protection. To learn more about the safety features at this site, check out the ePals Tour link.

This site offers an amazing assortment of class activities and possibilities. Collaborate with schools in Africa (or 200 other countries) for a geography project. Have your students find ePals to correspond with and practice writing skills in English or in a language you are studying. Use the ready to go lessons and interactives at the "Focus Areas" and "Projects" links. Get additional ideas for projects, by visiting the "Projects" link or propose one of your own based on ideas from TeachersFirst suggestions you read in other reviews, lesson plans, and articles. After viewing one of the informative videos, challenge your students to study one of the topics available at this site and create their own videos. Use a tool such as TeachersTube, to share the video clips, reviewed here.

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The Greens

Grades
3 to 8
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Meet the Green cousins, Dex and Izz, who are on a mission to make the world a little greener. Watch videos of Dex and Izz attempting to educate a whole ...more
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Meet the Green cousins, Dex and Izz, who are on a mission to make the world a little greener. Watch videos of Dex and Izz attempting to educate a whole cast of characters, including Dex's mom, Izz's dad, Granny, her cat, and the crazy neighbor lady, on how to become a little more earth friendly. These characters keep Izz and Dex on their toes throughout each comically, animated episode. Each episode has corresponding links that are filled with educational information about recycling, reusing and reducing. There is also a simple Blog (written by Izz and Dex). This site requires Flash.

tag(s): earth (228), earth day (112), environment (317)

In the Classroom

Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. This site is a perfect addition to Earth Day activities! Incorporate literacy skills into the site by having students read the silly blogs of each character. Extend into a writing assignment by having students create their own personal Green characters and write their own blogs for each episode.
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Mission H2O - Savewater

Grades
4 to 12
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Use this free game to identify how water is wasted and can be conserved in the home. Click Play Now to start the activity. This is part of a competition ...more
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Use this free game to identify how water is wasted and can be conserved in the home. Click Play Now to start the activity. This is part of a competition (that ends May 29, 2009). But the activities can be done without entering the contest. Choose from 8 rooms or places in the house that are identified by icons along the bottom and that portion pops-up. Click on the information areas designated with an "i" to view information about water use and conservation. Underneath each room, is an opportunity to play the game to save the family water. Many of the games are just for fun, but the whole experience is engaging. As this site originates in Australia, remember that many of the units of measure are different from ours.

tag(s): conservation (127), earth (228), earth day (112), water (130)

In the Classroom

Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students move through the rooms and take notes on conservation ideas and statistics. Students can use these notes to create a pamphlet on water conservation or a project that can be posted on a wiki. Do you want to learn more about wikis? Check out the TeachersFirst's Wiki Walk-Through.

Alternatively, post writing prompts that can be answered in a journal or a blog post about the thoughts, problems, and reasons for conserving. Students can analyze water usage in their homes or community and create suggestions or write a letter to the editor of the local paper or to local officials in favor of conservation.
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Virtual Forest - Scholastic.com

Grades
K to 8
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Teaching about our impact on the environment? Engage students through this game that moves through the choices in a daily life and the direct impact that they make. This site ...more
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Teaching about our impact on the environment? Engage students through this game that moves through the choices in a daily life and the direct impact that they make. This site requires Flash. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): earth (228), earth day (112), ecology (135), environment (317)

In the Classroom

Use this game as an introductory activity to an ecology unit. As students play the game, they will note ways that we have an impact on the environment. Brainstorm what they learned in the end, either as a small group or as a class. Groups of students can research more information on these topics or use class discussions. Students can survey peers or families to determine habits and impact. Create multimedia or traditional posters that bring awareness to these issues. Why not have the class create a video or videos highlighting their topic? Have the students share the videos using a site such as Teachers.tv (reviewed here). Or have students create an online book using a tool such as Bookemon (reviewed here) and share it via email with family members.
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Bell Museum of Natural History - University of Minnesota

Grades
2 to 8
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Find interactive activities at the online activities page from this museum. Hover over objects on the "Touch and See Room" page to view information or participate in activities. Take...more
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Find interactive activities at the online activities page from this museum. Hover over objects on the "Touch and See Room" page to view information or participate in activities. Take the restoration challenge by restoring a barren landscape back to a prairie on the "Build a Prairie" page. Try the "Life in a Diorama" activity to view the connections in an ecosystem by simply hovering over areas of the diorama. Play the "Watershed Game" by entering your name and choosing novice or one of the intermediate levels. Students earn points and can improve upon their score while learning about watersheds. This site uses Flash. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): air (163), conservation (127), earth (228), earth day (112), ecosystems (88), prairie (10), water (130), watersheds (16)

In the Classroom

Share the activities on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Use these activities as an introductory activity as you study each of these topics. For example, students can play the watershed game and note information that they learned. Students can compile this information to use as a starter for class discussion or additional research into watersheds. Have students create multimedia presentations to share with the class, such as a podcast using a tool such as Podomatic (reviewed here).

Follow up by visiting a local watershed and identifying the animals and plants and our relationship and impact on the ecosystem. Or map a local watershed with voice explanations using a tool such as Mapskip, reviewed here
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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The Story of Stuff - Annie Leonard and Free Range Studios

Grades
6 to 12
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Watch the story of stuff movie, an interactive 20-minute video about where our stuff comes from and the effects of consumption on our society. Use the tabs along the top ...more
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Watch the story of stuff movie, an interactive 20-minute video about where our stuff comes from and the effects of consumption on our society. Use the tabs along the top of the video to skip around to the specific chapters or click a link for more information about the topic. Play the video from the site or download to your computer. Other downloads include posters and related items. Subscribe to the blog and receive updates and new information. Playing the movie requires Flash. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): earth (228), earth day (112), environment (317), resources (112)

In the Classroom

The most difficult aspect in learning about the environment is understanding how the "stuff we use" impacts more than students can imagine. Use this thought-provoking movie to stimulate class discussions, get students thinking, and create awareness. Students can take aspects of the video and do group research of additional information needed to understand. Students can also create awareness campaigns, poll friends and families, blog, or create other multimedia articles. Looking for some creative multimedia options? How about having students create public service message podcasts ("Stop! Where do you think that ___ came from?") using a tool such as PodOMatic (reviewed here). Or create videos and share them using Teachers.tv (reviewed here).

Students can research the origins of many popular items in their lives, tracing the materials used and the resources needed to create and transport the materials and the product. Students can create a Google map or Mapskip (reviewed here) showing the movement of materials throughout the world from resource to send product to consumer.
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Rainforest - Myvocabulary.com

Grades
4 to 10
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As part of their extensive site for vocabulary, roots, and more, MyVocabulary.com has added a themed area for the Rainforest. Find interactive vocabulary activities using Rainforest-related...more
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As part of their extensive site for vocabulary, roots, and more, MyVocabulary.com has added a themed area for the Rainforest. Find interactive vocabulary activities using Rainforest-related vocabulary words. You will also find printable crosswords, fill in the blanks and more, all using the same theme words. This and other "themes" available on the site will make vocabulary development fun.

tag(s): environment (317)

In the Classroom

Share the puzzles on your interactive whiteboard or projector or make them available as links on your teacher public page. Have students (or groups) create their own illustrated dictionaries of terms using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here. As you add more vocabulary lists during the year, have them select their favorite 6-10 terms from each list to add to their "book."

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Act Green - Scholastic

Grades
K to 8
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Act Green provides many avenues for students to learn about going green and to put their green ideas into action. The site includes "100 Ways to Act Green," printables, and ...more
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Act Green provides many avenues for students to learn about going green and to put their green ideas into action. The site includes "100 Ways to Act Green," printables, and many other features! Join the site for free (no email address is required) and become part of the Green Team by fueling the Greenerator! Students earn points for taking green action and can even become Greeniacs! This site requires Flash and Adobe Acrobat. You can get both from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): earth (228), earth day (112), environment (317)

In the Classroom

This outrageously green site can serve as a guide for Earth Day activities. Extend it further and start a class project that could expand throughout the entire school and community. Share the interactives and other ideas on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Highlight some of the "100 Ways to Act Green" in your classroom. List this site on your class website for families to use at home. Have cooperative learning groups explore various facets of this site and complete a simple video sharing their findings. Share the videos using a site such as Teachers.tv (reviewed here).
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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USA Today Interactive Weather Graphics - USA Today

Grades
2 to 12
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This site has an expanding group of interactive weather graphics for those weather anomalies students like to explore. Clicking on a specific weather situation takes you to a page with...more
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This site has an expanding group of interactive weather graphics for those weather anomalies students like to explore. Clicking on a specific weather situation takes you to a page with a text explanation as well as a graphic that you can manipulate. See the seasons, fall foliage, tornado formations, lake effect snow causes, how winter storms bring rain, ice, and snow, atmospheric optics (rainbows, sun dogs, sun pillars, and halos), global warming, the landscape of natural disasters, a hurricane in action, and more. The topics range from simple weather to more complex topics for older students. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): disasters (39), fall (16), seasons (37), weather (188)

In the Classroom

Use this site as you discuss tornado warnings with your class or when a hurricane is looming nearby. Use it also when classes study geography or meteorology. Project the interactive portions on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Have cooperative learning groups explore one of the topics and present a multi-media or web presentation about it: a wiki page with embedded video examples or a simple interactive book using a tool such as Bookemon (reviewed here).
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Search - Community Gardens Page

Grades
1 to 12
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More a project than a lesson, this site offers a very complete guide to planning a community garden. Though not specifically designed for school settings, the steps and procedures would...more
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More a project than a lesson, this site offers a very complete guide to planning a community garden. Though not specifically designed for school settings, the steps and procedures would be a great guide for a class or school interested in developing its own garden. Depending on your local climate, this could be a full-year or summer project.

tag(s): earth day (112)

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Winter Weather - Myvocabulary.com

Grades
4 to 12
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Brr.. it is cold outside! This site is all about winter weather: arctic, blizzard, freezing, frost. Are you feeling cold yet? Come to this site to find several interactive puzzles,...more
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Brr.. it is cold outside! This site is all about winter weather: arctic, blizzard, freezing, frost. Are you feeling cold yet? Come to this site to find several interactive puzzles, a wordbank of 30+ vocabulary words, discussion questions, an alphalary of winter weather terms, some basic wintry fact, and more. Many of the activities are able to be printed FREE of charge. This site does have some basic advertisements.

tag(s): vocabulary (323), weather (188)

In the Classroom

Share the puzzles on your interactive whiteboard or projector or make them available as links on your teacher public page. Have students (or groups) create their own illustrated dictionaries of terms using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here. As you add more vocabulary lists during the year, have them select their favorite 6-10 terms from each list to add to their "book."

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Earth Day - Myvocabulary.com

Grades
4 to 10
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As part of their extensive site for vocabulary, roots, and more, MyVocabulary.com has added a themed area for Earth Day. Find interactive vocabulary activities using Earth Day vocabulary...more
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As part of their extensive site for vocabulary, roots, and more, MyVocabulary.com has added a themed area for Earth Day. Find interactive vocabulary activities using Earth Day vocabulary words. You will also find printable crosswords, fill in the blanks and more, all using the same theme words. This and other "themes" available on the site will make vocabulary development fun.

tag(s): earth (228), earth day (112), vocabulary (323)

In the Classroom

Share the puzzles on your interactive whiteboard or projector or make them available as links on your teacher public page. Have students (or groups) create their own illustrated dictionaries of terms using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here. As you add more vocabulary lists during the year, have them select their favorite 6-10 terms from each list to add to their "book."

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