Grades1 to 8
tag(s): holidays (141)
In the ClassroomUse this site to help ESL/ELL students improve listening, reading, writing, and cultural knowledge. Invite an ESL/ELL student to present a holiday from their home country to the class using an interactive whiteboard or projector. Many of the review activities would also work well as reading comprehension practice on interactive whiteboard, especially if students use highlighters and pens to mark up the text passage to locate key terms, etc.
Have students create online holiday posters on paper or do it together as a class using a tool such as Web Poster Wizard (reviewed here) or PicLits (reviewed here). Share this site with families of your ESL/ELL students to learn more about American holidays.
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomThe use of primary sources in teaching has been greatly increased by our digital access to documents like these. Peruse the list of "milestone" documents, and commit to using the photographs on an interactive whiteboard (or projector) when the document comes up in a lesson or discussion. For teachers who are supporting student projects for National History Day, this site also has a link to specific tips, although it appears the site has not been kept up to date with current information on individual competitions. Challenge cooperative learning groups to investigate one of the documents and create a multimedia project of their choice. Looking for some inspiration? How about having groups create a podcast using PodOmatic (reviewed here). Or have students create online posters on paper or do it together as a class using a tool such as Web Poster Wizard (reviewed here) or PicLits (reviewed here). Have students narrate a photo of the document (using a FREE and LEGAL photo) using a site such as Thinglink, reviewed here.
Grades4 to 7
In the ClassroomThis is a motivating webquest during the cold months of winter. The webquest incorporates literature, science, research, writing and more!
Instead of creating paper posters, make the assignment a little different and have them create online posters for the final product. Try a site like Web Poster Wizard (reviewed here) or PicLits (reviewed here). Students can create them on classroom computers, and can present them via projector or interactive whiteboard!
Grades3 to 5
tag(s): poetry (219)
In the ClassroomTake advantage of this free lesson plan during a language arts unit on poetry. For a twist on the skit idea, you could also have students complete the almost the same task by creating online posters on paper or do it together as a class using a tool such as Web Poster Wizard (reviewed here) or PicLits (reviewed here).
Grades9 to 12
In the ClassroomDivide students into cooperative learning groups to explore the site. Have them research a specific section and create a brief poster project of what they found. We recommend using a site such as Web Poster Wizard (reviewed here) or PicLits (reviewed here). This site would be a great supplement to any unit on Victorian England, from all aspects of history!
Grades6 to 12
tag(s): book lists (131)
In the ClassroomUse this resource in study of classical languages as well as cultural world history. Add the site URL to your list of top online libraries. In literature class, share this site and have students (or groups of students) explore one of the many works listed at this site. Challenge the groups to create electronic "posters" or word graphics (about their piece of literature) using a tool such as Piclits (reviewed here).
Grades7 to 12
tag(s): statistics (127)
In the ClassroomUsers must be knowledgeable of simple formatting and the various choices available for a survey. Follow the simple online guide to make your survey. View the demo on the main page for more information on how to use Obsurvey.
Consider creating a class account for students to use. Students can turn in a word document of questions to be able to attribute work to students. Be sure to spell out appropriate and inappropriate use, consequences, and then be sure to follow through.
Use a survey or poll to find answers to questions that are simple to collect data on (favorite food, color, vacation spot, number of siblings etc.) Use data to show averages, results of small and large samples, graphing, simple statistics, and more. Find results of what people believe about various issues or ideas to introduce in class discussions or debates. Want student input on a unit or possible next activity? Use a poll to find out! Use as a way to check for prior knowledge at the start of a unit. Polls and surveys are applicable for every subject at the beginning, middle, or end of a unit. Uncover misconceptions from students in your class as well as the school community.
Grades4 to 12
tag(s): poetry (219)
In the ClassroomIntroduce your poetry unit by showing this site on your interactive whiteboard and demonstrating the three types of poems created from items known to students. Create poetry from student-created websites for classroom display. Have students create poems from websites then use this site to create poems and compare the different outputs. Choose websites that aren't language arts related such as math, history, or science sites and create poetry from their content. For some interesting, high level discussion, ask students what makes something a "poem" vs. simply a collection of words.
Grades7 to 12
tag(s): biographies (91)
In the ClassroomShare this site with students as a resource when writing biographies of famous mathematicians (or women's history.) Share one woman mathematician on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) each day as students arrive in class. Use this site in history class to locate and research famous mathematicians alive during the time period being studied. Challenge students to research one of these famous women and create a multimedia presentation using one of the many TeachersFirst Edge tools reviewed here.
Grades2 to 12
In the ClassroomCreate quizzes to use for pre- and post- lesson assessments. Post the quizzes to your class website or blog as assignments. Insert videos, photos, and text into your quiz to reinforce concepts before students take the test. Assign students to create a quiz on a current topic as a wrap-up to a unit. Share the quiz on your interactive whiteboard or projector (use it as a center, rather than a "whole-group" activity. Learning support teachers may want to have students work with a partner to create review quizzes they can use as study aids.
Grades6 to 12
tag(s): blogs (85), charts and graphs (198), communities (37), experiments (69), geology (81), literature (272), news (262), search strategies (28), spreadsheets (22), statistics (127), tutorials (49), wikis (21)
In the ClassroomFor example, use the lesson It's a Statistical World to bring statistics and the use of spreadsheets into the classroom. Follow project ideas, suggestions, and how to's to complete the activity. Specific examples, suggestions, and tutorials for using the resources are given throughout. Find unbelievable ideas that are exceptional for many curricular areas. Mark this one in your Favorites to use when you need inspiration or a new approach to curriculum that never seems to "stick" the way you wish it would.
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomStir up interest in reading by making these teen appealing activities available to your classes on your teacher web site, bulletin boards, or in class. Be sure to share this annual event with families. Participate in some of the challenges with your class.
Grades3 to 12
In the ClassroomUse this tool for discussions, project collaboration, voting on issues, and sharing resources in and out of the classroom. Increase student participation and encourage in-class discussions and outside homework, extension of the classroom, and activity. Use for blended learning activities that include discussion questions to extend the discussions from in class to outside the classroom. Provide multiple choice questions that they can answer, agree or disagree with statements, post comments, or vote on other responses. Use the discussions to debate issues in the school community or within the country. Critique and comment on current events as they are happening. Use to discuss environmental problems. Use groupings to create literature circles. Watch the videos on the site from educators that show how they use the site in their classrooms.
Includes an education-only area for teachers and students
Parent permission advised before posting student work created using this tool
Includes social features, such as "friends," comments, ratings by others
Requires registration/log-in (WITH email)
Products can be shared by URL
Multiple users can collaborate on the same project
Includes teacher tools for registering and/or monitoring students
GradesK to 12
tag(s): grants (18)
In the ClassroomThis blog provides examples of grants that serve as wonderful models when writing your own. Most of the examples on this blog are for the iPod touch, but many of the same concepts pertain to iPad use or other tablets as well. Librarians or IT directors will want to access this site for valuable background information on how to manage the maintenance and circulation of e-readers, iPods, iPads, or other tablets. If outside funding or school support is an issue, look beyond the tool and examine their instructional practices. Much of the grant success is due to incorporation of voice recording. Consider having students record their reading or writing by using some of the free web resources TeacherFirst suggests such as PodOmatic reviewed here or Audio Pal reviewed here. Examine how these grants use multitasking in the classroom. Consider using audio books while students engage in less cognitively demanding tasks. ESL/ELL instructors will find the lesson examples and results valuable.
GradesK to 9
In the ClassroomSearch for literature to use with math lessons to make lessons more interesting and add cross-curricular connections. Use the lesson plans to supplement your current lessons. Share possible literature books with parents via your class website.
GradesK to 6
In the ClassroomCreate games to use for classroom centers, homework, or practice with classroom skills. Older students can be given directions and create their own card games. Use the card games on the site as inspiration for creating card games appropriate for your classroom.
Grades4 to 7
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tag(s): short stories (24)
In the ClassroomKeep this site in mind when you have a few minutes at the end of the day. Read one together and then set your students at computers in pairs to take turns reading aloud to each other.
GradesK to 12
In the ClassroomUse this site to differentiate for students of all levels by allowing students to create their own worksheet for practice or review. Make a shortcut to this site on classroom computers and use it as a center - students can then create their own individualized practice.
This site includes advertising.
In the ClassroomThe articles are short and interesting, a perfect match for non-fiction reading comprehension. With so many different activities to choose from, it will be easy for the classroom teacher to differentiate. There is an mp3 audio version of each article so students can listen as they read. Assign small groups of students to present the news each week, using the interactive whiteboard to show others the country and city from which the article originated. Make the newscasting experience even more real by having students read scripts of these news stories or their own original stories using a Easyprompter, reviewed here. Students can then go to another news source such as 4 News Wall, reviewed here, to see what else is happening in the news. For a project, have the small groups create a "talking map" using a site such as Zeemaps, reviewed here. This site allows students to create audio recordings AND choose a location (where their article/story took place). What a fabulous way to share the article with the rest of the class!
Grades2 to 8
In the ClassroomUse "Speak Up" as part of a mini-lesson about problem and solution or dialogue. Have students create their own cartoons as part of a craft lesson. Print out the cartoon and students can use it as an outline to help them write narrative text or plays. Demonstrate how to combine narration with dialogue in one text from this cartoon outline.
Use scenarios of social conflicts your class may be facing or are currently discussing in character education. For example, use bullying or peer pressure issues. Pair up classmates to re-tell a conflict similar to those students face during recess, in class, or from home. Together they can discuss ways to solve these conflicts. Use the results to open up dialogue about student issues and as a tool to brainstorm constructive ways to solve them.
World language teachers or ESL/ELL teachers can also use this tool for students to practice written dialog and appropriate social interaction.