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Frame Games And Critical Thinking Puzzles by Terry Stickels - Terry Stickels

Grades
2 to 12
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Enjoy the ultimate of word puzzles at Frame Games! Terry Stickels has posted 53 of these, free, for solving. Not sure what a Frame Game is? It is a word ...more
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Enjoy the ultimate of word puzzles at Frame Games! Terry Stickels has posted 53 of these, free, for solving. Not sure what a Frame Game is? It is a word or words in a box (a puzzle of sorts) with funny spelling or shows the word in a special position or presentation. There are many names for this type of puzzle, and you will figure out how they work once you try one. The goal is to guess the meaning (usually a common phrase). Lighten up and have some fun by treating yourself to one of these puzzles when taking a break during the day. Build your mental flexibility. See the correct answers by advancing to the next puzzle.

tag(s): critical thinking (111), flexibility (5), gifted (94), logic (237), puzzles (207)

In the Classroom

Share these puzzles on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Use these puzzles as a morning opener to get students settled and ready for learning. Use as a break when transitioning between activities. ESL/ELL students will benefit by trying to solve these common American English phrases, and learning about them, too! Include these during a study of prepositions and positional words in a speech and language class or during a lesson on idioms in English class. Challenge students to create their own Frame Games of common idioms such as "over a barrel" and share with the class. Have students create posters to share their Frame Games using a tool such as Web Poster Wizard (reviewed here).
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Frontiers for Young Minds - Frontiersin.org

Grades
2 to 10
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This tool is a neuroscience journal that includes articles reviewed by kids! Approved student scientists, ages 8-16, review the articles, and neuroscientists serve as their mentors....more
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This tool is a neuroscience journal that includes articles reviewed by kids! Approved student scientists, ages 8-16, review the articles, and neuroscientists serve as their mentors. The scientific process is followed with young scientists writing their submission specifically for the Frontiers Journal. The article is then peer reviewed. Students and scientists serve as peer reviewers. The process shows how articles are reviewed in major publications and show the scientific process.

tag(s): brain (70), child development (25), human body (126), senses (29)

In the Classroom

Use these articles in Biology or Health class to learn about the brain and factors that affect it. Students will find many articles of interest to them. Articles focus not only on learning, but games, media, emotions, and other activities. Have a bright students looking for a challenge? Encourge him/her to follow the directions to apply as a Young Mind reviewer. Challenge cooperative learning groups to read an article and create an infographic sharing the highlights of what they discovered. Use a tool such as Venngage reviewed here. If you teach gifted science students or would like to offer an advanced option to a gifted student in your regular science class while studying the brain or human body, this journal offers an outstanding opportunity for real world collaboration with scientists and very bright students in other places. Differentiate by going outside school walls! Have your student write an article and/or apply to join the team of young scientists.

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Penflip - Collaborative Writing and Version Control - Loren Burton

Grades
6 to 12
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Penflip is a collaborative writing tool that allows groups of three or more to write together with complete version control. Write together without distractions or ads right in your...more
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Penflip is a collaborative writing tool that allows groups of three or more to write together with complete version control. Write together without distractions or ads right in your web browser! Click on "Share" at the bottom of the right menu to copy/paste the address into an email to your collaborators. Clicking on "Contributors" gives options to add users as editors or delete them as contributors. Once revisions are made and submitted, the contributor is notified via email of any future changes to that piece. When reviewing suggested changes, you can delete the changes you don't want and accept others. Accepting changes will merge these into the master (your original project). Penflip calls any writing a "project" whether it's a book, a short story, a poem, or a research paper. The free version makes all projects "public," but you have the choice to refuse pending revisions by clicking on "Contributors" in the right menu and clicking the minus symbol, deleting that contributor.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): creative writing (169), editing (66), process writing (45), proofreading (23), writing (362)

In the Classroom

Immerse students in the peer review process by allowing them to collaborate using Penflip! Teachers and students can use Penflip to make comments in a side box or directly in the writing. All suggested revisions are in a different color with the original wording left complete. Penflip is the perfect place for students to put their writing and get feedback. Student peers can suggest different wording and ideas, and all are color-coded so the author knows what has been contributed and what is original. This tool will fulfill the Common Core Standard requirements for using technology for collaborating and writing across the curriculum. Students will save time and learn from each other when working in small groups on projects or research papers in world language classes, science, math, or social studies. The best part of this site: it is EASY to use!

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Fantastic Contraption - KONGREGATE

Grades
1 to 12
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Test out your logic, mechanical understanding, and creativity as you create amazing 2D contraptions! Each contraption uses wheels, wooden stationary logs, and power moving water rods...more
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Test out your logic, mechanical understanding, and creativity as you create amazing 2D contraptions! Each contraption uses wheels, wooden stationary logs, and power moving water rods to create a moving vehicle to push a target to the goal. Get a taste of the challenge by trying your hand at the introduction activity. Then begin your regular contraption. Each level adds more challenge. Use the delete button, and try again until you succeed. Registration is not required to use this site. However, more options are available if you register (FREE). As you progress through a level, earn points and badges. Save your designs and send your best designs to your friends using a specific url. You can turn off the (rather annoying) music by clicking the speaker icon.
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tag(s): creativity (119), energy (203), gifted (94), inventors and inventions (95), logic (237), machines (30), motion (61), problem solving (272), STEM (148)

In the Classroom

In the classroom, develop logic, perseverance, and creativity for your gifted and high achieving students. These activities could be used with all learning levels. Use this activity as part of a unit on inventions or as a lead in to a Maker's Faire. Introduce this activity on your interactive whiteboard or projector and you will have all students hooked! Your ESL/ELL students and weaker readers will be on equal footing with their peers since this site requires very little reading after the introduction. Capture the attention of your students by gamifying science and logic. Continue with class discussions of movement, energy, logic, and strategy. Use as a stepping stone to begin a unit on geometry, energy, or motion. In elementary science classes, include this activity for students who have mastered required curriculum to go beyond the basics of simple machines and motion. Have students add a written explanation of the contraption to take sequencing to a new level. (A screenshot would help them illustrate their writing.) After drawing a scaled model, create the contraption using real objects. Discover the types of energy and movement that are in the model. Organize a contraption competition. Share this link on your class website for students (and their parents) to "tinker" with at home.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Eventbrite - Kevin and Julia Hartz

Grades
K to 12
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Eventbrite is an all-in-one event planning solution. Create your event page including logos, images, and other pertinent information using the templates provided. Take advantage of...more
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Eventbrite is an all-in-one event planning solution. Create your event page including logos, images, and other pertinent information using the templates provided. Take advantage of the option for creating bar coded tickets to send to participants (choose free tickets for the free account, paid tickets have a small charge to cover credit card costs). Once your event page is ready, get the word out using Eventbrite tools such as emailing personalized invitations or various social media options. Use the mobile features to check attendees in at your event and scan bar coded invitations.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): calendars (46)

In the Classroom

Use Eventbrite to increase excitement for any classroom event. Be creative and have students attend an "event" to review for exams (with bar coded tickets they can earn by sharing a student-made review activity). Offer tickets to in class enrichment "events" for those who test out of a unit. Have student groups design "events" instead of giving class presentations. The "event" could be a quiz show or game session that teaches a curriculum topic, such as "World War Wonders." Have your class work together to plan a culminating "event" such as a tea for famous Americans, and issue invitations and tickets to students who play the parts of the people they researched. Invite parents to Open Houses and Conferences. (Perhaps provide a small door prize for those using the Eventbrite app as their admission ticket!) Use Eventbrite to manage events with limited seating or a limited number of participants. If you provide professional development sessions, this is an excellent way to spread the word and manage participation. If you are an advisor for a school club, this tool would make club-sponsored events easier to organize.

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Edspire - Jim Moodie

Grades
11 to 12
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This tool is much like a trip advisor for your online learning. Find information to help with courses, learn for personal enjoyment, improve professional skills, or develop a hobby,...more
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This tool is much like a trip advisor for your online learning. Find information to help with courses, learn for personal enjoyment, improve professional skills, or develop a hobby, passion, or interest. Choose your path, then select from subjects or topics. Topics vary from Psychology to Literature to Engineering and countless others. Choose your learning style: from visual, audio, interactive, words, structured learning, learning at your own pace, or blended (a variety of the rest). Choose the time you have to spend as well as cost you are willing to pay, including free. What you get is a list of online courses and materials from which to choose. As these are mostly university open courses, the resources are useful to increase your knowledge or those of upper level students. Copyright law would prohibit teachers from using the materials on this site as their own.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): advanced placement (23), learning styles (20)

In the Classroom

Use this resource to learn information to increase your knowledge and extend learning beyond the textbook. Link to this site from your gifted resource page. Gifted students will find a great variety of courses and materials in many fields and interests that can stretch their learning past the High School level. If you teach an AP class in your school, encourage students to find a passion related to your class. If possible, create an assignment where students choose their area of interest, take a course related to it (many courses are only 4 hours in length), and present material to the rest of the class.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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OECD Data Lab - Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development

Grades
8 to 12
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Discover graphical displays of statistics about education, death, employment outlook, migration, income distribution, and more. The best way to understand our world and to educate people...more
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Discover graphical displays of statistics about education, death, employment outlook, migration, income distribution, and more. The best way to understand our world and to educate people is to know what is happening in the many aspects of our lives. Hover over a graph to view an abstract of the data used for the graph. Each graph is interactive. Choosing various countries or other parameters changes the graph. Click on the "Create Your Own" button on most of these graphs to enter your own data for viewing and comparison. Compare your graph to others and share. Graphs even showcase gender differences in responses. The Better Life Index is a great place to start.

tag(s): agriculture (56), charts and graphs (196), critical thinking (111), cross cultural understanding (117), financial literacy (80), foreign policy (16), migration (59), writing prompts (94)

In the Classroom

Start with the OECD Better Life Index that brings together many factors to numerically rank countries by happiness or well-being. Assign this graph as a "Make Your Own," with students rating the topics (or more importantly, asking their parents or grandparents). Compare their results and look at gender differences. Students can brainstorm reasons for gender differences or ranking of topics in importance. Compare the United States to other countries. Allow class time to look at other data found on this site and brainstorm how these are connected. Connect the data to curriculum being discussed in class: economic policies, wars, global problems with food and agriculture, social norms, and more. Connect the information to headlines from around the world, both past and present. Encourage students to write an essay, opinion piece, or elevator pitch on one aspect or social issue that is important to change. What a great example of argument and evidence as required by Common Core! This assignment can also be delivered as a podcast, video, or part of a news segment the class creates. Use a site such as PodOmatic (reviewed here) to create podcasts. Try creating a video and share it using TeacherTube reviewed here.
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Lookwork - Ben Pieratt and Eric Jacobsen

Grades
6 to 12
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Lookwork is an RSS Reader displaying images drawn from the "feeds" of over 400 of the world's most creative blogs. Browse by scrolling through images on the home page. Choose ...more
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Lookwork is an RSS Reader displaying images drawn from the "feeds" of over 400 of the world's most creative blogs. Browse by scrolling through images on the home page. Choose from subjects such as Photography or Architecture or Illustration to narrow your search. Create your own personal Lookwork feed after creating an account and choosing topics to include. Note: Content is unmoderated so take precautions when sharing with students.

tag(s): architecture (84), creative writing (169), design (82), graphic design (34), images (276), photography (162), writing prompts (94)

In the Classroom

Use Lookwork as an excellent inspiration for creative writing projects. Find interesting images to display on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) for students to use as inspiration. Use in Art class as a source for creative artwork and photography to discuss design elements and principles. Have your more advanced art students create their own accounts to "feed" their own artistic appetites.

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Critical Thinking Puzzles - Eldhose Baby

Grades
8 to 12
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Explore this large collection of problem solving puzzles and activities, posted blog-style. Although the site is rather simple, there is much here to challenge your mind! Some puzzles...more
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Explore this large collection of problem solving puzzles and activities, posted blog-style. Although the site is rather simple, there is much here to challenge your mind! Some puzzles are geared towards mathematics skills while others involve the English language or even logic. This site only contains the problems. No hints or correct answers are included. You may post your thoughts and view comments of others. Find previous puzzles in the Blog Archives. Please note that comments are not moderated. So please preview before you share with students.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): logic (237), problem solving (272), puzzles (207)

In the Classroom

Bookmark and use Critical Thinking Puzzles in your classroom throughout the year for problem solving and logic activities. Have students or groups collect ideas and findings using Padlet, reviewed here. The Padlet application creates free online bulletin boards. If your students (or you) have trouble figuring out a solution, post the problem on your classroom bulletin board and revisit throughout the year. View the comments privately, to see if you can give your students "a clue." Why not post a "question of the week" on your class website, using a link to this page! Challenge your gifted students to create their own critical thinking puzzles to share with the class. Create an online book of puzzles using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here. (Have them include the solutions in the back of the online book.)

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The Library of Congress American Memory - Library of Congress

Grades
4 to 12
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American Memory provides this digital record of American history and creativity through written and spoken words, sound recordings, still and moving images, prints, maps, and sheet...more
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American Memory provides this digital record of American history and creativity through written and spoken words, sound recordings, still and moving images, prints, maps, and sheet music that document the American experience. Some of the categories are Advertising, Environment and Conservation, Immigration and American Expansion, Performing Arts, Sports and Recreation, and many others. These materials, from the collections of the Library of Congress and other institutions, chronicle historical events, people, places, and ideas that make up America.

tag(s): advertising (33), african american (114), architecture (84), branches of government (49), cities (25), conservation (128), cultures (107), environment (321), immigration (58), industrialization (14), literature (276), maps (292), native americans (78), north america (19), presidents (131), religions (67), sports (97), women (92)

In the Classroom

Use American Memory in your study of either state, or United States history providing further primary and secondary resources to bring life into your subject matter. Discover point of view or popular opinion found in the collections. Use on your interactive whiteboard with the class, or even as a resource on projects to give a personal reference. Combine with literature for understanding of a place or time in American history. Look at the year of birth for your students to compare and contrast for today. Use as an example for your year of learning in your subject area or even grade level. Be sure to list as a resource on student computers or your class website.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Made By Milk Carton Construction Contest - Evergreen Packaging

Grades
K to 12
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Enter the Made By Milk Contest (a design and building challenge) for a chance to win up to $5,000 for your school or simply to learn. Offered each spring and ...more
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Enter the Made By Milk Contest (a design and building challenge) for a chance to win up to $5,000 for your school or simply to learn. Offered each spring and fall, this contest is sure to inspire creativity in all participants. Simple rules make it easy to participate. Create a design using 100 or more milk cartons. Take pictures of the completed project, and include a short essay explaining why your school should win. Be sure to check out the Past Winners page for ideas on what it takes to create a winning entry. (Hint: earn extra points if reward money is to be used for green projects.) Even if you do not want to join in the contest, the challenges offer wonderful STEM projects to try within your school or at home.

tag(s): architecture (84), counting (120), grants (19), STEM (148), structures (24)

In the Classroom

This project is perfect for individual classroom participation, Art Clubs, or after school clubs. Incorporate this project into your math class and have students count the number of cartons used, estimate how many cartons needed, or calculate how long it will take to gather the number of needed cartons. Join in the challenge in conjunction with a science unit on structures or a physics unit at much higher levels. Include as part of your nutrition unit to help students understand the importance of dairy in a healthy diet. Share this information with your PTO/PTA as a possible "makers movement" idea for an evening of fun and learning, even if you never enter the official contest. Let your gifted students (or a school service club) organize and plan a mini-version of the contest within your school, perhaps using the smaller milk cartons from the cafeteria. Make re-using milk cartons a creative event for Earth Day.

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TenMarks - Rohit Agarwal and Andrew Joseph

Grades
1 to 12
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TenMarks is an online support program for math instruction in grades 1-12. All instruction is correlated to Common Core Standards for use as a supplement to classroom instruction. Create...more
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TenMarks is an online support program for math instruction in grades 1-12. All instruction is correlated to Common Core Standards for use as a supplement to classroom instruction. Create your free account to begin. (One grade level is included with a free subscription.) Follow prompts to add your class roster. Create your curriculum using the drag and drop feature that allows 3 additional folders from other grade levels for additional support or enrichment. Assign topics to your whole class or individual students. When students complete assignments receive instant feedback through automatic grading and analysis of their most common mistakes. Videos and hints assist students throughout the assignments providing feedback and support along the way. Some of the video clips require 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): differentiation (49), gifted (94)

In the Classroom

Create a class account and provide login information to students. Share a link on your class website or newsletter for students to practice on their own. Use TenMarks as a great resource for differentiating needs among your students. Create a link on classroom or computer lab computers for in-school use. Share with other teachers in your building to supplement Common Core lessons. TenMarks isn't only for students needing extra support. Use with gifted students to supplement and enrich learning. Use TenMarks for homework assignments. Be sure to set the due date of the assignment.

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This Day in History Game - Shockwave

Grades
6 to 12
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Test your knowledge of history by placing eight events in order of occurrence. Drag each event to the correct order on the timeline then view your results. Change any incorrect ...more
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Test your knowledge of history by placing eight events in order of occurrence. Drag each event to the correct order on the timeline then view your results. Change any incorrect answers until all are in the correct order. Move on to the bonus round to guess the exact year each event occurred. Try your hand at the challenge of the day or games for the previous two weeks for free. Premium membership is required for any other dates. If you like learning more detail about historic events and why they matter, check out TeachersFirst's Dates that Matter.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): logic (237), problem solving (272), trivia (18)

In the Classroom

This is a challenging activity to sneak in some problem solving and logic lessons! Use the "This Day in History Game" as a fun class warmup activity on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Challenge students to problem solve dates of events with as much accuracy as possible. Choose items of interest for students to research. Then have students upload a photo they have taken and add voice bubbles to explain what they learned using a tool such as Superlame, reviewed here.
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MathFights - MathFights Ltd.

Grades
9 to 12
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Compete in the ultimate Math Challenge with opponents from around the globe on MathFights! Registration is required to access this site, and it requires email. The questions are challenging,...more
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Compete in the ultimate Math Challenge with opponents from around the globe on MathFights! Registration is required to access this site, and it requires email. The questions are challenging, much like those in Math Counts and other math competitions. Begin working your way up from division 10 all the way up to the highest level, division 1. Choose the "Fight" button to connect with a challenger. You can also challenge a friend registered with the site. Each round consists of five multiple choice questions to answer within the given time. Speed and accuracy scores determine the winner for each round. Following each round is an opportunity to review each task and view correct answers and explanations for incorrect responses. Be prepared, MathFights will offer a challenge to even the brightest math minds!

tag(s): gifted (94), logic (237), mean (25), order of operations (36), problem solving (272)

In the Classroom

Create a class MathFights account and have students play on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Allow students to create their own accounts using Gmail subaccounts and challenge each other from computer centers. Read tips for safely managing email registrations here. Create a link on your class webpage or blog and challenge students to share their levels and competition results. Choose difficult questions from MathFights to use as challenge problems in class. MathFights is excellent for use with gifted students as a Math challenge at any time they have completed lesson objectives.

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Honest Slogans - What People Really Think - Cliff Dickens

Grades
9 to 12
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Honest Slogans takes company slogans, adds a little twist, and creates new advertising images. These new slogans poke fun using a company's own logo and brands. Scroll through the many...more
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Honest Slogans takes company slogans, adds a little twist, and creates new advertising images. These new slogans poke fun using a company's own logo and brands. Scroll through the many pages to view images similar to the company's advertising but with a slightly different punch line that tells what people really think about the product. For example, see the Hallmark Cards logo stating "When you care enough to give a card mass-produced by a corporation." Each slogan includes a link for viewing notes shared by others. Please take caution in sharing these with students as they are unmoderated. Not all topics are appropriate for students (for example, alcohol).
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): advertising (33), media literacy (60)

In the Classroom

Use Honest Slogans as part of a truth in advertising lesson. Share examples with students and have them create their own Honest Slogans for different brands. Use this site as the inspiration for creating new book covers for classic literature or as an introduction to a social studies chapter or math unit. Create "honest" ads in a new language in your world language class. The ideas are endless! Use an online poster creator, such as Padlet, (reviewed here) to create and display finished products.

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DropTask - Think Productivity

Grades
4 to 12
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DropTask is a visual task management organizer for individuals and groups. Create tasks by dragging and dropping items, and assign priorities for completion. View tasks in List View...more
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DropTask is a visual task management organizer for individuals and groups. Create tasks by dragging and dropping items, and assign priorities for completion. View tasks in List View or a Venn Diagram style presentation. Share projects through email with friends, add files, and view changes in real-time. Short tutorials demonstrate how to start and create projects, add people to groups, and choose priorities for tasks. Sort tasks by priorities or due dates. Change settings to receive email notifications of upcoming tasks or completion dates. The FREE version includes collaboration for two members and up to five projects.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): calendars (46), DAT device agnostic tool (170), graphic organizers (43), organizational skills (129)

In the Classroom

Use DropTask to schedule staff meetings, PTA events, Science or Math fairs, club or student council events, parent volunteer meetings, and more. Student groups of busy high schoolers may want to use it to schedule work sessions. This is a great tool for teams of teachers to stay on the same page! Secondary learning support and gifted teachers can share this tool with their less organized students. This program will help them develop coping/organizational skills, and they can set intermediate deadlines with reminders for long term projects.

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Next Exit History - Historical Research Associates, Inc.

Grades
3 to 12
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Travel the United States and the world on your computer, tablet, or smartphone using Next Exit History, powered by Google Maps. Apps are available for iOS and Android. High quality...more
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Travel the United States and the world on your computer, tablet, or smartphone using Next Exit History, powered by Google Maps. Apps are available for iOS and Android. High quality historical information educates you as you visit and click the historical landscape of over 55,000 sites around the world. Join and save your information to "backpacks." Use the embedded links for easy reference. Discover culture, history, and tourism information all at your fingertips.

tag(s): cultures (107), DAT device agnostic tool (170), maps (292), primary sources (90), virtual field trips (50)

In the Classroom

Use Next Exit History for either primary or secondary information on any location for social studies, history, or even literature study. Use this tool as an example for a multimedia presentation or map drawing of state history or study about any geographic location. After reading The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Springs by Betty Birney, discover the wonders of your school, community, or state. Plan culminating projects where students create their own Google Earth Map (reviewed here). Create placemarker guides to your community using Next Exit History as an example. Be sure to share this link on your class website for instant reference.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Space Facts - Space Facts 2014

Grades
4 to 10
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Travel to Space Facts to see a growing collection of interesting facts about planets, the solar system, space explorations, and more. Information includes planet profiles, planet size...more
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Travel to Space Facts to see a growing collection of interesting facts about planets, the solar system, space explorations, and more. Information includes planet profiles, planet size compared to Earth, and basic facts about the planet. The blog area provides updates on current discoveries and space related features. The Gallery includes images available for use in other projects. Read the terms of use, but most are NASA images that are permissible for download and use in your own projects. Although this site is rather text heavy, it is full of great content! There are rather annoying advertisements, so readers who are easily distracted may find it disruptive.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): earth (232), mars (42), planets (126), solar system (123), space (216)

In the Classroom

Deepen your study of the planets through further reading and beautiful graphics. Focus on the use of nonfiction text in your classroom, combined with literature studies of space or planet fiction, such as Jules Verne's, "From the Earth to the Moon," or Roald Dahl's, "Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator." Find useful information, graphics, and diagrams for PowerPoints, Screencasts or Prezi's reviewed here. Include on your list of resources for science units on space on your classroom webpage. Be sure to show this tool on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) to introduce space. Visit before your trip to the planetarium or science museum. Use to inspire artwork inspired by space. Deepen your students' background knowledge in writing about space travel, future, or creativity.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Futility Closet - Greg Ross

Grades
6 to 12
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Futility Closet is a large collection of entertaining and interesting tidbits from history, language arts, literature, and more. There are mind-stretching puzzles and many thought provoking,...more
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Futility Closet is a large collection of entertaining and interesting tidbits from history, language arts, literature, and more. There are mind-stretching puzzles and many thought provoking, true tales. The collection contains close to 8,000 tidbits (some with photos or video clips). More are added daily. Choose from categories such as hoaxes, poems, puzzles, or technology to narrow your search. Scroll through the site to find items by date added. This entertaining site will have you returning over and over to explore and find new bits of trivia! Some of the 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): logic (237), poetry (225), puzzles (207), trivia (18)

In the Classroom

Bookmark and save Futility Closet as a resource for thought provoking trivia throughout the year. Share one item on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) at the beginning of each class for class discussion. Allow your gifted students to explore this site independently, and perhaps even start their own blog collections. Allow students to explore the site and find interesting items to research and explore further. Use the search tool on Futility Closet to search for trivia on current lessons such as Shakespeare, angles, or any keyword - you will be surprised at your findings! Some of the "curiosities" would be great writing prompts for students to take a position and research/support with evidence. Have students share one item they find interesting and create a project using a tool such as Padlet, (reviewed here). Subscribe to Futility Closet using your RSS Feed Reader. Teacher-librarians would love to use these as research prompts. Include one during your school newscast or PTO newsletter (with proper credit to the source, of course).
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Build with Chrome - Google Chrome and LEGO

Grades
K to 12
4 Favorites 1  Comments
 
A worldwide virtual LEGO playground, Build with Chrome offers online LEGO bricks to capture your creativity. Jump right in or take some lessons in the Build Academy from master...more
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A worldwide virtual LEGO playground, Build with Chrome offers online LEGO bricks to capture your creativity. Jump right in or take some lessons in the Build Academy from master builder, Vitruvius. Vitruvius guides you through a series of increasingly complex tasks as you unlock more bricks along the way. You must sign in to Google Chrome to publish your completed projects. You will also receive a URL to share your creation! If you do not have a Chrome account, you can take screenshots of the different views to save what you built. Explore other builds through a clickable Google Map. Choose a plot anywhere in the world to build! At the time of this review, Build with Chrome works only on the Chrome web browser and up-to-date Firefox browsers. It also works well on Android mobile devices. iOS mobile devices using the Chrome Browser do NOT support Build with Chrome. (Apple and Google are in competition, remember.) Piece together your ideas using Build with Chrome's collection of colorful bricks.

tag(s): architecture (84), creative writing (169), creativity (119), engineering (126), geometric shapes (166), structures (24), tessellations (6)

In the Classroom

Allow your students to explore a virtual LEGO playground without having to keep the plastic bins organized! Create a whole class account if your students do not have their own emails or use the Gmail sub account trick explained here. Challenge them to see how large a building they can build with only a limited number of bricks. Have your students build two dimensional tessellations or something that represents a geometric shape. Teach basic math concepts such as volume or multiplication by counting brick units. Your students can select a place in the world to build and research the architectural designs associated with that location. Challenge your students to build a design to fit that geographic environment. Encourage your students to locate and research different historical monuments or buildings around the world and recreate them using the virtual LEGO bricks. Have your students research the ecology and climate of where they are building. Your students can construct creations for humans or animals that live in that ecosystem. Integrate writing with your students Build with Chrome creations. Have them write descriptions and explanations of their designs. Your students can also write stories about events that may have occurred at the building they created. Assign your students different regions around the world and challenge them to build a cultural center for the area. Use the Google Maps interface to travel around the world as students use Swipe, reviewed here, to present information of their Build with Chrome building and the culture. Create your own town with the buildings created by your students. Create a newspaper for your town using a site such as Zinepal, reviewed here. Click to "Start with a blank e-Book." This is a great tool for cross-grade activities in a gifted program or sharing among students in several schools.

Comments

This is a great idea. My school has a lego club and this would be great for the students. Lorraine, VA, Grades: 1 - 3

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