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Historic Maps in K-12 Classrooms - The Newberry Library

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K to 12
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This site has 18 maps with coordinated lesson plans that are designed to help the K-12 student improve their map reading skills. Using historical maps, students learn about history...more
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This site has 18 maps with coordinated lesson plans that are designed to help the K-12 student improve their map reading skills. Using historical maps, students learn about history and how geography has influenced that history. Sample themes include "Environmental History," "The Historical Geography of Transportation," "Political and Military History," and a few others. The themes each have lesson plans by grade level.

tag(s): critical thinking (108), maps (288), primary sources (86)

In the Classroom

In addition to using the provided lesson plans, use this site on an interactive whiteboard or with a projector. Use the whiteboard tools to highlight special features of the map. Print out the maps and have students label them with the provided vocabulary words. Use a drawing program like KidPix and have students create their own "historical" maps based on their own lives. Use the additional photos from the resource section and have students create an interactive online poster ("glog") using Glogster EDU, reviewed here about why their map is significant to history.
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Marco Polo - Mr. Dowling's Electronic Passport

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4 to 8
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Travel through time with Mr. Dowling's Electronic Passport to read about the history of Marco Polo and his adventurous family. This site offers a brief but thorough account of the ...more
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Travel through time with Mr. Dowling's Electronic Passport to read about the history of Marco Polo and his adventurous family. This site offers a brief but thorough account of the travels and life of Marco Polo. This site is a great reference tool for research and reports as well as an extension of a textbook lesson.

tag(s): explorers (61), marco polo (5)

In the Classroom

Use this site as a class webquest in conjunction with Marco Polo's Route to China and Back, reviewed here. Have students or groups research one area of this site and create a multimedia report to share with the class. Challenge students to narrate a picture using a tool such as Slidestory, reviewed here. Or have students create an online book using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here.

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Virtual Museum of Iraq - National Research Council, Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Grades
5 to 12
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Send your students to Iraq, virtually of course. The Virtual Museum of Iraq is an amazing multimedia website that highlights Iraq's historic role in the origin of civilization. The...more
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Send your students to Iraq, virtually of course. The Virtual Museum of Iraq is an amazing multimedia website that highlights Iraq's historic role in the origin of civilization. The site helps address the origins of human society, early civilization, religion, classical traditions, and the giant empires of Mesopotamia and Islam. The site houses a fantastic collection of antiquities from Mesopotamia. This collection dates from prehistoric times up to the Islamic period. The digitized images represent cultural artifacts found in not only the Baghdad museum, but also the 7,000 works lost to looting in 2003 and additional museums worldwide. The Italian government is the benefactor and author of this site. Google is the contributor of more than 14,000 digital pictures of the museum's artifacts. Due to these generous donations of time and money, viewers may roam through eight virtual halls covering the following periods: Prehistoric, Sumerian, Akkadian and Neo-Sumerian, Babylonian, Assyrian, Achaemenid and Seleucid, Parthian and Sasanian, and Islamic. A very impressive feature is the ability to rotate objects 360-degrees. The combination of short videos, maps, descriptions, and timelines create a clear explanation many of the important concepts behind these historic periods. The site is available in three languages: English, Italian and Arabic

tag(s): archeology (32)

In the Classroom

The Virtual Museum of Iraq is a valuable resource for World History teachers. Incorporate this site with your previous lesson plans or as an anticipatory set with a projector or interactive whiteboard. Ask students to use the site to compare and contrast the architectural elements of Egypt and Iraq. How is the tower of Babel similar to the great pyramids of Egypt? This site is also useful for comparing Iraq's past to current events and its present conditions. Have students record their findings using a tool such as the Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here).

Examine key moral concepts about the amnesty of museums during battle and the moral dilemma of how to preserve these collections during war. Art History teachers can take a break from the study of the artifacts of Rome and Greece and include the ancient treasures from Iraq. Use a class wiki to share images and spark dialogue about specific artifacts or videos. Not comfortable with wikis? Have no wiki worries - check out the TeachersFirst's Wiki Walk-Through.
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Census in Schools - US Census Bureau

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K to 12
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The US Census Bureau site provides a collection of materials, lessons, and information designed to teach the nation's students about the importance of the census and focusing on encouraging...more
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The US Census Bureau site provides a collection of materials, lessons, and information designed to teach the nation's students about the importance of the census and focusing on encouraging students to help ensure every child and every household member is counted in 2010. The site includes a copy of the census form, dozens of lesson plans/ideas for various grade levels and subjects, and a few simple interactive activities for both kids and teens.

tag(s): census (19), data (148), population (60), states (163)

In the Classroom

Because of the volume of materials and activities, introduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students explore this site independently or in small groups to put together a Public Service Announcement on participating in the Census 2010. Have students create video advertisements or infomercials. Share the videos using a tool such as Teachers.TV reviewed here. Try using the historical census data or the predicted population data for math projects related to statistics.
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Math Maps - Tom Barrett

Grades
K to 6
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This site is an interactive, collaborative project that uses Google maps with you and your students to provide content. You can also see Math maps created by others. By following ...more
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This site is an interactive, collaborative project that uses Google maps with you and your students to provide content. You can also see Math maps created by others. By following the directions, you can create math problems utilizing information from your own city or town. Once the math problems are posted on the map, you can tweet or blog to inform others about them. In addition to creating problems, your students can view the contributions of others and solve real world math problems. Be aware: pop-up messages do appear across the bottom of the screen. These messages are recent posts to the site. Teachers who wish to contribute must submit a Gmail address to be offered access to add their own "Maths Maps." (Note to U.S. educators and students: What you know as "math" is known as "maths" in the UK, Australia, and some other countries. The "s" is NOT a typo!)

tag(s): map skills (80), maps (288), measurement (159)

In the Classroom

What makes this site special is that the content comes directly from educators and students. Use the existing math problems as a challenge activity or to demonstrate how math can be used in the real world. Share the maps and math questions on your interactive whiteboard or projector. The different pin colors represent different age groups so you can choose appropriately leveled math problems. You can easily differentiate for individuals by telling them which color to explore. This site is a great way to get your students to learn more about their community. Have your students research a community spot and create a math problem about it as a class. Enter the information onto the map together or under teacher supervision for other classes all over the world to use. Allow students to explore on their own and keep a math log of all the problems they found and solved on a "trip around the world with math."

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Dare to Compare - Nation Center for Education Statistics

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4 to 12
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Students will enjoy comparing their knowledge with students around the country and the world through the interactive quizzes on this site. Six subject categories are offered (math,...more
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Students will enjoy comparing their knowledge with students around the country and the world through the interactive quizzes on this site. Six subject categories are offered (math, civics, history, geography, science, and economics)at 3 different grade levels (4th, 8th, and 12th). You can also choose 5, 10, 15, or 20 questions. Upon completion of quizzes, scores are shown along with all correct answers. Questions are provided from Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS), Civic Education Study (CivEd) and National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP) - all are institutes which are involved in assessing student achievement and performance. The questions are higher level, and many include diagrams and other visual aids.

tag(s): quiz (85), quizzes (97)

In the Classroom

Introduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector as a pre-assessment for a new unit or as a mind bending class challenge. Reinforce and review lessons previously learned with your students. This is a terrific site during the run-up to high stakes testing. Use the questions as classroom conversation starters after taking the quizzes. Print out questions from the quizzes and provide your students with the correct answers and see if they can match them up with the questions. List this link on your class website for students to practice at home. Challenge small groups of students to create their own set of 5 questions about a current unit of study and create a multimedia presentation. Why not have cooperative learning groups create online books (one question per page) using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here.
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Estuaries.gov - NOAA

Grades
K to 12
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Learn about estuaries using this interactive site. Bring to life our nation's estuaries. Participate in field trips to bring these precious coastal environments into the classroom....more
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Learn about estuaries using this interactive site. Bring to life our nation's estuaries. Participate in field trips to bring these precious coastal environments into the classroom. Use technology, data, and inquiry to learn about estuaries and coastal environments. Gain a perspective of the ecological, economic, and other benefits of estuaries. Follow EstuaryLive to experience a field trip to an estuary, compare different estuaries around the United States, and interact with scientists and other resources. Click on EstuaryLive for great interactive resources, Science and Data to read and interpret data, and About Estuaries for some great information.

tag(s): chesapeake bay (4)

In the Classroom

Find an unbelievable amount of information on this site. For example, click the Educators tab and then Life Science. Find some incredible activities such as "Survival in an Estuary." View Curriculum Overview for great classroom ideas and suggestions for management. Observe images and data under Science and Data and then under the Visualizations tab. Find data already packaged into Data Lessons as well. Students find games and other interesting activities under the Students tab.
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My Plant ID - MyPlantID

Grades
4 to 12
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Learning about plants and plant names? Use this resource to find names of unidentified plants or help in identifying unknown plants. An account is required to identify or name plants....more
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Learning about plants and plant names? Use this resource to find names of unidentified plants or help in identifying unknown plants. An account is required to identify or name plants. It is probably easiest to create a class account to use this site. Registration requires an email and general location information. Tip: rather than using your personal or work email, create a free Gmail account to use for memberships. Take pictures of local plants and upload including location for others to use on the site. View a Google map that shows the location of various plants.

tag(s): classification (25), plants (144)

In the Classroom

View unidentified plants in order to classify, name, and enter information to help others. Create groups to find, photograph, and identify native plants to add to this database as part of a classification, botany, or my community unit. Use this site to determine where many plants are found, which can lead to discussions of climate zones, native and invasive plants, adaptations of plants, as well as uses of various plants in our living spaces.
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Online Basic Skill Games - Jefferson County

Grades
K to 8
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This site provides links to basic skill games for math, language arts, science, and social studies. Although we don't typically review "hotlists" this one really has something to offer...more
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This site provides links to basic skill games for math, language arts, science, and social studies. Although we don't typically review "hotlists" this one really has something to offer anyone teaching elementary or middle school. Each subject area has several topics. Each topic has countless links for more information and/or activities. Language Arts topics include Letter Fun, Working with Words, Go Grammar, Spell It, and Read It. Science highlights Animals, Plants, Physics, Biology, Anatomy, Weather, and Space. Math includes everything from Money to Probability to Graphing to Patterns (and more). At the Social Studies link you will find Maps, 50 States, U.S. Presidents, History, The World, and Flags. The link to interactive websites includes activities for grades pre-K -12.

tag(s): charts and graphs (195), fractions (239), integers (41), money (193), patterns (85)

In the Classroom

Save this site in your favorites on classroom computers and use it as a center. Students can focus on areas of strength or weakness on a math game day. Because this site offers multiple levels and activities for many topics, it is easy to differentiate for ability levels within your class. Include this site on your class web page for students and parents to access for home based skills practice. There is a LOT here to explore.
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Google for Education - Google

Grades
K to 12
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Not sure how to use Google's innovative tools for your classroom activities? Follow lessons which include step by step directions with screenshots and self-check quizzes for many tools...more
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Not sure how to use Google's innovative tools for your classroom activities? Follow lessons which include step by step directions with screenshots and self-check quizzes for many tools including Calendar, Classroom, Google Docs, Google Play, Forms, Maps, Sheets, and much more. Choose from one of the many tools along the left side. View all the lessons available to learn about using the tool. Some of the training videos are hosted on YouTube. 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.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): maps (288), organizational skills (122), spreadsheets (17)

In the Classroom

Even those familiar with the Google tools will find information and uses they did not know about. Consider posting a link to your class web page for students to access. Your students are also valuable resources. Be sure to point out students who are able to use tools in unique ways that other students can learn from.

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New York Times Mathematics Lesson Plans - New York Times

Grades
7 to 12
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Tie math and reading into a neat little package in this convenient lesson plan page from the New York Times. With the daunting task of trying to have students see ...more
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Tie math and reading into a neat little package in this convenient lesson plan page from the New York Times. With the daunting task of trying to have students see the connection between algebra techniques and the real world, this tool is a must-have in the math teacher's arsenal. The site provides clear lesson plans that only require a quick read before implementing, along with links to different Times content.

tag(s): charts and graphs (195), statistics (122)

In the Classroom

Use the lessons found on this page to enhance mathematics class curriculum. Have students work on activities independently on laptops in class. If computer access is limited, print out activities and have students work in groups on calculations and guide them using the interactive whiteboard or projector. This also provides the automatic connection between real life and the math strategies and concepts. Take advantage of these timely topics. Be sure to save this site in your favorites and check back often for some fresh ideas.

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1000s of Museums Online - Discovery Media

Grades
6 to 12
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Looking for an online museum exhibit for a specific subject? Want to broaden your students' perspectives on what resources are available to them? If the answer is yes, this is ...more
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Looking for an online museum exhibit for a specific subject? Want to broaden your students' perspectives on what resources are available to them? If the answer is yes, this is a great site for you. There are 1000's of museums listed by topic and search able by term. The site includes science, history, art, world, and USA museums. Don't miss the "Fun" link. There you will find some interesting museum topics such as American Immigration Data, Darwinia + Evolution, Hot Wheels Collectors Virtual Museum, White House + Presidential History, and several others.

tag(s): ceramics (5), evolution (100), geology (81), museums (49), painting (66), sculpture (21), zoology (7)

In the Classroom

Plan virtual field trips for your students, or put the research in their hands and have them create their own online field trips. Have them post their trip to the classroom wiki. Follow up by requiring students to try out other students trips. Not comfortable with wikis? Have no wiki worries - check out the TeachersFirst's Wiki Walk-Through. Or, have students view online exhibits from the site, and then have them create their own exhibits.

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Legends of the American West - Legends of America.org

Grades
6 to 9
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Although this site is "plain vanilla," it offers a huge collection of information on topics of American History. Everything from Prohibition & Depression Gangsters & Outlaws to The...more
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Although this site is "plain vanilla," it offers a huge collection of information on topics of American History. Everything from Prohibition & Depression Gangsters & Outlaws to The Louisiana Purchase to Outlaws of the American West to the Sixties - The New Generation and countless others. Many of the topics that are either explained or mentioned are linked to more information on key terms. There are a few advertisement distractions on the site, however, they are minimal. This site is great for introduction and research! Text-based selections would also work well for comprehension practice, such as finding main idea or summarizing.

tag(s): photography (160)

In the Classroom

This website would be an excellent resource for researching in American History courses. Challenge students to take the information beyond plain vanilla. Try having students create an online tour of places along the Oregon Trail or a tour of mining towns of the gold rush. Have students use a mapping tool such as Mapskip, (reviewed here,) to create a map of the historic locations (with audio stories and pictures included)! Or challenge students to narrate an image using Thinglink, reviewed here. This site allows users to narrate a picture.

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Explore.org - Annenberg

Grades
3 to 12
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"Never stop learning" with this wonderful, high quality, and easy to use site. View videos, documents, and photos about people around the world who have devoted their lives to extraordinary...more
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"Never stop learning" with this wonderful, high quality, and easy to use site. View videos, documents, and photos about people around the world who have devoted their lives to extraordinary causes. Search through a wide range of places or causes. View a range of topics from health, animal rights, spiritualism, and education. Explore a variety of global issues to bring cultures and issues into perspective. View videos in HD. Download and embed videos for reuse. Remixing videos is against the acceptable use policy of the site. Read descriptions which provide the necessary background information and view links of related content and materials. This site is a must see! Selected videos can be used with younger elementary classes, depending on the curriculum connections.

tag(s): heroes (24)

In the Classroom

Find photos that speak to students and use them as an activator at the start of class. After viewing the picture, provide time for writing questions about the picture These questions will lead to search terms to find more information about culture, pollution, and socioeconomic problems. Encourage students to create poster or blog campaigns outlining problems and possible solutions. Why not create multimedia posters using a site such as Padlet (reviewed here). Find other areas in the world where similar or related problems are occurring. Identify the historical, economic, or geographical reasons for the problems. Challenge students to create a thematic Mapskip (reviewed here) This tool allows you to create a map with audio! Students can use this site as inspiration for "I believe..." style essays, photos, or videos. Looking for a FREE video sharing tool? Check out TeacherTube reviewed here.
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Temperate Oceans - MBGnet

Grades
4 to 10
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This colorful and informative site provides information about oceans. Specific topics include "How the Ocean Refreshes Itself," "Ocean Animals," "Food from the Ocean," and several others....more
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This colorful and informative site provides information about oceans. Specific topics include "How the Ocean Refreshes Itself," "Ocean Animals," "Food from the Ocean," and several others. Many of the topics include interactive presentations. There is also a link to find more "Ocean Links."

tag(s): animals (276), oceans (148)

In the Classroom

If your class is learning about the oceans of the world, delve even "deeper" by sharing this site on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Have cooperative learning groups explore specific areas of this site and create a multimedia presentation to share with the class. Have students create a UtellStory, reviewed here. This tool allows for narrating and adding text to a picture. Challenge students to find a photo (legally permitted to be uploaded), and then narrate the photo as if it were a news report. To find Creative Commons images for student projects (with credit, of course), try Compfight, reviewed here. Or, bring even more geography skills into the project by having groups create a Mapskip, reviewed here, sharing exactly WHERE the oceans are located (with audio stories and pictures included)!

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Shmoop US History, American History - Shmoop

Grades
9 to 12
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Useful for either teachers or students, Shmoop is a virtual cram session on a variety of topics. In this history section, choose a time period and you get a tabbed ...more
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Useful for either teachers or students, Shmoop is a virtual cram session on a variety of topics. In this history section, choose a time period and you get a tabbed overview of the era including a quick review, a more in-depth coverage, a timeline, important people, fun facts, web links, and a test review. There are featured stories, Hot Topics, and study guides. It's all written in a breezy, accessible style that students will appreciate, but it's not superficial.

tag(s): blues (21), civil war (145), constitution (79), fashion (10), gold rush (19), war of 1812 (14)

In the Classroom

Students will love this site for reviewing and preparing for exams. Share this link on your class website for students to access both in and out of the classroom. Take advantage of the FREE study guides. Why not have cooperative learning groups investigate specific topics relative to your current unit of study and create multimedia presentation. Create podcasts, using a site such as PodOmatic (reviewed here). Have students create a Have students create an annotated image including text boxes and related links using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here. Challenge students to find a photo (legally permitted to be reproduced), and then narrate the photo as if it is a news report about the event or topic. To find Creative Commons images for student projects (with credit, of course), try Compfight, reviewed here. Teachers can also use this site to differentiate between the typical lectures used to teach a US history project. Use the images on this site to create a "picture walk" in your classroom, introducing any one of the topics offered. Select 10-15 of the more powerful and diverse images, hanging them up in different locations around your classroom. Have students rotate around the classroom every 30-45 seconds, jotting down what they observe and infer about each image until the entire class has completed the circuit. After the class is back in their seats, have a class discussion based on what they observed and what this says about the topic.

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Caves at Lascaux - French Ministry of Culture

Grades
6 to 12
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This latest redesign of the Lascaux tour offered by the French government takes viewers on a video tour of the famous French caves. As you walk along, pop-ups label the ...more
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This latest redesign of the Lascaux tour offered by the French government takes viewers on a video tour of the famous French caves. As you walk along, pop-ups label the drawings being viewed. An outline map on the right lower side of the screen shows the path the "walker" is taking, and also demonstrates where the viewer is at any given part of the tour. In addition to the video walk, information about the caves appears in "Chapters" which students can click on. The original version of this site is in French. The left sidebar offers the options of viewing the site in French, English, German, or Spanish. This link automatically opens to the English version of the site.

tag(s): caves (5), europe (75), france (40), maps (288), painting (66)

In the Classroom

Introduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Since many of the functions work on mouse-over -- not click -- you may want to use a human being to operate the actual computer mouse, since many whiteboards do not "know" where you are mousing until you click! Then have students explore this site independently or in small groups. This is a great addition to French or Art class. Challenge students in your class to narrate an image orally in French as they present it on the big screen or have them create their own narrated "cave paintings" using a tool such as ThingLink, reviewed here.
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Hypercities Beta 2 - UCLA Academic Technology Svcs

Grades
4 to 12
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This beta site, created at UCLA and powered in part by Google, allows students, teachers, and parents to explore selected world cities. Users can also slide a timeline to view ...more
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This beta site, created at UCLA and powered in part by Google, allows students, teachers, and parents to explore selected world cities. Users can also slide a timeline to view images of that city in the past, compare its changes throughout the years, and study old and new maps. More cities will appear in the future. The site still has a few bugs, but it keeps improving. It sometimes loads slowly. Some web browsers do not work properly, so PREVIEW in your classroom. Internet Explorer 8 users will get a message: "HyperCities is optimized to work in Firefox or Safari. If you do not have Firefox installed, you can download it here" and will have to load an alternate browser to use this site.

tag(s): maps (288)

In the Classroom

Use this site as an anticipatory set or "activator" to introduce a unit or lesson on the cities or on maps using on a projector. Have students create a map in the old style of a city they are studying today. ESL and ELL students and weaker readers can easily use this site since there are few words! Have your ESL students check to see if cities in their countries are available here; have them do an introduction to the city and comment on what is different about the cities now. Use the timeline views to explore the impacts of world trade, transportation, and changes in government on different parts of the world.

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Free Documentaries - freedocumentaries.org

Grades
8 to 12
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This website is a source of free, downloadable documentaries. It is a nonprofit site. The site explains, "you can stream interesting and provocative documentary films for free!" Teachers...more
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This website is a source of free, downloadable documentaries. It is a nonprofit site. The site explains, "you can stream interesting and provocative documentary films for free!" Teachers will want to preview before you share with your class simply because of what "provocative" could mean. Most films are full length, but some are short. There is a helpful menu of topics on the right hand side of the computer screen. This menu makes it easy to navigate and find the type of documentary that is needed. Documentaries range from 9/11 and the London Bombing to The Road to Guantanamo to The Panama Deception to many others.

tag(s): movies (64), politics (99), sept11 (21)

In the Classroom

Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. View clips relevant to your topics of study. Use this website to contrast a documentary with the facts that are being taught. Use this site as a point-counterpoint to other perspectives available on the web as part of a discussion of bias. Compare and contrast analysis of the materials versus the known facts is one good use for this website. A short documentary could be shown during class as a launch point for students to create their own documentary style video projects. Share the videos using a site such as Teachers.TV (explained here). Teachers of gifted and high achievers will great possibilities for challenging critical thinking using this site.
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International Kids Club - Planet Pals

Grades
2 to 10
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This International Kids Club site has activities, books, and crafts to help students understand each other around the world. Information links include lots of material on world clocks,...more
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This International Kids Club site has activities, books, and crafts to help students understand each other around the world. Information links include lots of material on world clocks, religions, customs, organizations, and art. Specific links include "I" Kids, "I" Share, "I" Shop, "I" Learn, "I" Craft, and "I" Play. One fun part is finding out how speakers of different languages think animals sound. What is "meow" in an Asian language, for example? Sound files give examples of the sounds of many languages, as well. Some of the links are slow to open at times, so you may want to open them before you are ready to use them in class.

tag(s): flags (21), maps (288), tolerance (10)

In the Classroom

Use parts of this site when doing units on prejudice, diversity, and discrimination. Refer students to do research in some of the books listed here on those subjects. Have students interview people from other cultures to check the information given here on aspects of their cultures. Do they agree with what is said here? Even younger students will enjoy learning about flags and peace symbols. Make the craft links available for students doing reports on different countries or preparing for an International Day. Have students copy flags or other country symbols. Ask them to create their own "country" from these models. Challenge cooperative learning groups to research a specific topic at this site and prepare a podcast to share with the class using PodOmatic (reviewed here).
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