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Creative Routines - Info We Trust

Grades
6 to 12
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Creative Routines, a simple infographic, analyzes the self-reported daily routines of 16 creative geniuses from history. Traditional lessons on time management are so predictable. This...more
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Creative Routines, a simple infographic, analyzes the self-reported daily routines of 16 creative geniuses from history. Traditional lessons on time management are so predictable. This infographic makes creative time management personal (and more meaningful). Did they get the recommended 8 hours of sleep? Did they exercise regularly? When were they most productive? What did they do for fun?

tag(s): biographies (42), creativity (93), gifted (81), organizational skills (95)

In the Classroom

Display the infographic on an interactive whiteboard as a springboard for discussion about time management, creativity, study (or work) habits, perseverance, or multi-tasking. Surprise! Mozart spent 0 hours checking his Facebook account! The site might also be instructive in a discussion about what habits contribute to creativity or as information about the lives of famous people. Using these 16 24-hour clocks as exemplars, students can make their own "creative routines" clocks for comparison. As you talk about creativity or study skills, encourage your students to pay attention to the time of day that is best for them to generate creative ideas, write, draw, write music, etc. They may find that altering their routine can have a positive impact on both grades and creative satisfaction.

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A List of Twitter Educators by Subject Area - Alice Keeler

Grades
K to 12
1 Favorites 1  Comments
Are you looking for other educators to follow on Twitter? Check out this lengthy list of educator Twitter handles arranged by subject. The easiest way to view the full document ...more
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Are you looking for other educators to follow on Twitter? Check out this lengthy list of educator Twitter handles arranged by subject. The easiest way to view the full document is to click the link located under the heading "A Twitter Win." This link leads to a Google document with headings for all content areas as well as Ed Tech, Counselors, Administrators, and more. Use the scroll bar at the bottom of the document to view all categories. Add your own Twitter handle in the appropriate category for inclusion on this document.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): social networking (94), twitter (43)

In the Classroom

Explore the site to discover and follow educators who match your interests and needs. Read the Tweets about what is happening in other classrooms to gain some fresh, new ideas. Looking for more ways to use Twitter in the classroom? If you are the only person in your building who teaches a particular subject, such as gifted or learning support, this list can help you find like minds to share ideas or to set up collaborations between your students. Read more about Twitter at TeachersFirst's Twitter for Teachers page.

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what a great resource Susan, NY, Grades: 6 - 12

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Nourishing Gifted Through Technology in Any Classroom - Melissa Henning and Candace Hackett Shively

Grades
K to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
These pages, originally the support pages for a presentation at the ISTE conference 2014, offer resources, tools, and tips to nourish the needs of gifted in your classroom, along with...more
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These pages, originally the support pages for a presentation at the ISTE conference 2014, offer resources, tools, and tips to nourish the needs of gifted in your classroom, along with sanity savers to organize your multitasking class and your oftentimes "scattered" gifted learners. Find a multitude of reviewed tools, resources, and connections available via technology, so gifted students can work with differentiated academic content, leverage technology to foster their creativity, join in digital collaborations to extend the curriculum through individual interests, and even establish digital "me-portfolios." Start with the Helpful Background, basics about gifted students, and move through several pages to help you plan appropriate activities for your gifted students-- and help them be involved in the planning, as well. The authors of this article are both experienced teachers of gifted, so their suggestions are based on practical experience, not just "theory."

tag(s): differentiation (27), gifted (81)

In the Classroom

Mark these pages in your Favorites as a reference whenever you have gifted students. These students may or may not be officially identified, but sometimes trying these strategies will save you and the student a lot of frustration. When it comes time to offer choices, share the handpicked tool collections in this article with your gifted students so they have a solid place to start. For more ideas about gifted, try the gifted tag in reviews, use a keyword search including the term "gifted," or browse for the subject "Gifted" in the TeachersFirst Subject/Grade pages.

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Do Nothing for 2 Minutes - Alex Tew

Grades
K to 12
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Take a much-needed 2 minute break with Do Nothing for 2 Minutes. When you enter the website, the 2 minute timer begins. Relax and enjoy the soothing sounds of waves ...more
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Take a much-needed 2 minute break with Do Nothing for 2 Minutes. When you enter the website, the 2 minute timer begins. Relax and enjoy the soothing sounds of waves and the beautiful beach image. If you do anything, such as move your mouse, the timer resets challenging you to take the full 2 minutes of relaxation time. What a fabulous tool for lowering your stress or refocusing!

tag(s): stress (13)

In the Classroom

Use Do Nothing for 2 Minutess to settle students down after activities or during transition times. Use it to relax them before "big tests." This site may be perfect for those students that need a little quiet time in their daily routine. Use this site with any students who may need some quiet time between transitions. Share this site to use with students while studying. They could study for 15 minutes (or longer, depending on the age) and "earn" two minutes of relaxation. If students feel stressed out about a project, try starting with this 2 minute relaxation exercise to calm the nerves. Use this site for yourself: relaxing, destressing, and enjoying life for a quick 2 minutes. Use this tool during a unit in study skills to talk about ways to refocus as you study. There is great value in incubation time before actually launching into a new project or creative challenge, and this tool can help!

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Tapestry - readtapestry.com

Grades
K to 12
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Tapestry is a new way of storytelling across any device. Create and view beautiful "tappable" stories -- slideshows telling a simple story where readers tap to move forward. Explore...more
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Tapestry is a new way of storytelling across any device. Create and view beautiful "tappable" stories -- slideshows telling a simple story where readers tap to move forward. Explore Tapestries created by others sorted into categories such as popular, fashion, inspiration and more. To make your own Tapestry, click "Write a Tapestry" to view options. Options in the original editor include adding images, text formatting and color options, including a share button to send your Tapestry to others via social networking and email. Additional formats include resources for creating animated gif's and short stories. You do need an account to make your own Tapestry. There are free app versions for iOS and Android.

tag(s): DAT device agnostic tool (86), slides (54)

In the Classroom

Tapestry is perfect for use when creating and sharing short stories or poems. Use Tapestry to create quick slideshows for any classroom use. Set up a whole class account so students do not need individual logins. Easily share slides with information or (online) images on your website or blog to remind students about a project or assignment. Have students create presentations to "introduce" themselves to the class during the first week of school. Create a slide show to introduce any unit and have students guess what they will be learning. Create a Tapestry easily "on the fly" as a review resource to embed on your class website or blog. This site is perfect for your BYOD (bring your own device) classroom, since it is a "DAT." Make quick "cue cards" for students to read their lines off a projector, interactive whiteboard, or tablet for a video or school news broadcast! Paste your school or class announcements into slides and embed them on the class or school website.

Use this simple tool for students to make book promos for the library/media center. Display them on tablets or iTouches! Even the youngest gifted students can create simple presentations to go beyond regular curriculum in your class. Be sure to show young ones how to copy/paste the url for their finished work to send it to you or mark it in Favorites on the classroom computer or iPad. Have them make slide shows telling a story, explaining about a famous person, and more. During a unit on plants, have students create a guide to plant care or a show about the world's strangest plants. Have them write and illustrate slides as book reviews for independent reading they have done. This tool is simple enough for any student who can read.

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Classroom Authors - Classroom Authors

Grades
1 to 12
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Classroom Authors uses four easy steps to publish an e-book or a printed book: writing, editing, proofing, and publishing. Teachers create an account and a project. Have students join...more
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Classroom Authors uses four easy steps to publish an e-book or a printed book: writing, editing, proofing, and publishing. Teachers create an account and a project. Have students join the project with a code. Every student with the project code will have a chapter to create. Student accounts require email, but they can use a parent email address or an "+" extension of the teacher's email address, for instance, myemail+studentname@myschool.org. All students invited to the project can be working on their section, on multiple computers, at one time. Adding content is as easy as using a word processing program and uploading images to the gallery. Drag and drop the images into the chapter. Students can view the entire book, but only edit their own chapter. Teachers have complete control over editing, style and leaving comments. There are default templates so the books created are professional looking. Customize to give the book your own look. Classroom Authors is not only a vehicle for publishing; this tool will fulfill the Common Core Standard requirements for using technology for collaborating and writing across the curriculum. The best part of this site: it is EASY to use! Classroom Authors uses ePub to format e-books and offers one free printed book for each published project that has 10 or more students collaborating. Beyond that, there is a cost for printed books. E-books are FREE.

tag(s): creative writing (137), descriptive writing (31), ebooks (35), process writing (33), writing (321)

In the Classroom

Research proves publishing improves writing skills. Use Classroom Authors for class newsletters, an anthology of student written stories, and creating "choose your own adventure" type stories. Use this tool for research or opinion pieces in world language classes, science, math, or social studies. Some teachers have their students write novels for National Novel Writing Month, and at Classroom Authors they will be able to publish them.

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Khan Academy Common Core - Khan Academy

Grades
K to 12
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Prepare your students for success with Common Core Math skills at this excellent site presented by Khan Academy. 50,000 unique questions cover conceptual understanding, procedural fluency,...more
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Prepare your students for success with Common Core Math skills at this excellent site presented by Khan Academy. 50,000 unique questions cover conceptual understanding, procedural fluency, and real world applications. Use the link to "Browse Our New Common Core Map" to find interactive math problems for grades K-12. Each activity lists the number of skills and problems available for each level. View step by step solutions to each problem. Many problems even include video explanations. The Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium and Illustrative Mathematics partnered with Khan Academy to ensure the rigor of materials and full alignment to the Common Core Standards. Learn more about Khan Academy reviewed here. 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.

tag(s): addition (220), angles (79), base ten (10), coordinates (32), counting (117), data (142), division (150), equations (134), factoring (27), fractions (219), functions (63), geometric shapes (130), measurement (147), mixed numbers (12), multiplication (201), negative numbers (22), number lines (18), number sense (85), polynomials (28), prime numbers (28), probability (112), quadratics (28), rounding (22), square roots (23), statistics (111), subtraction (183), transformations (17), vectors (24), whole numbers (15)

In the Classroom

Share this site on your class website or blog for students to practice math concepts at home. Share with parents through your class website or newsletter as a great resource for review and reinforcement of math concepts. Share activities on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Use problems on the site to present new concepts or review information before end-of-unit assessments. Provide links to lessons on the class website or blog for students to review at home. Have students create their own lessons modeled on this site. Then have students create blogs to practice writing about their math solutions using Throwww reviewed here. Throww allows you to create "quick and easy" blogs for one time use. There is no registration necessary!
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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TinEye Labs - Idee, Inc.

Grades
2 to 12
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Search Creative Commons images by COLOR(s)! Choose up to five colors. As you choose each color, the tiled squares fill with a myriad of images that include that color. Click ...more
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Search Creative Commons images by COLOR(s)! Choose up to five colors. As you choose each color, the tiled squares fill with a myriad of images that include that color. Click a second color to view images that have both colors in them. Choose up to five colors. Click on "Next" in the lower right hand corner to view more pages of images. Click on the image you like to go to its Flickr site. Use CTRL-click (or right click) to view the different sizes of images and download pictures. Our editors did not notice any inappropriate photos. However, we highly recommend previewing this site before sharing with students. You will want to discuss what to do in the unlikely event that an image comes up that is not classroom appropriate. As with all Creative Commons images on Flickr, you will want to look at the details of the license to be sure you can use any image as you intend to. Some have limited use (such as no "derivative works"). Click the Rights link at the right when viewing an individual image to see the specifics.

tag(s): colors (74), creative commons (18), design (81), graphic design (29), images (221), media literacy (43), psychology (50)

In the Classroom

Use this tool when you seek specific color(s) to coordinate with a presentation or other class project. Use it to talk about the emotional impact of different colors, such as during a psychology unit on perception, a media literacy lesson on advertising color, or a discussion of color schemes in art class. Be sure to discuss the ethical use of images with proper credit, including Creative Common images. Start by having students carefully NAME files as they download and save them (include the photographer's name and a title). Remind them that they still need to give credit even if it is Creative Commons. This is a great site for looking at contrast, analogous and complementary color schemes, and other artistic expressions. Use TinEye Labs to uncover various elements of graphic design found in images. Art teachers will love the many options for demonstrating different color palettes on a projector or interactive whiteboard. Use the photo examples from Tineye Labs together with a tool such as Kuler, reviewed here, or Colour Lovers, reviewed here, to play hands-on with digital color. Share this with your gifted students who are especially interested in art or design.

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Mathigon - The Mathematics Education Project

Grades
3 to 12
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Get lost in the world of Mathigon - a visually beautiful, interactive online library of math animations, games, illustrations, and more. Choose to begin with the World of Mathematics...more
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Get lost in the world of Mathigon - a visually beautiful, interactive online library of math animations, games, illustrations, and more. Choose to begin with the World of Mathematics e-book or explore one of several slideshows, movies, and explorations. The Mathematical Origami and Panorama math applications sections are fabulous, though a little text-heavy. Take a trip with Alice in FractalLand using Disney clips to learn about sequencing, fractals, and triangles. Explore Mathigon Ideas containing short video explanations of important math ideas using only graphics and animations. There is much to explore and see on this interesting and colorful site. Be sure to allow plenty of time to find it all! Check back often as new explorations are currently under development. If your district blocks YouTube, then parts of this site 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. The site operates well on any mobile browser, too!

tag(s): charts and graphs (188), fractions (219), geometric shapes (130), origami (15), probability (112), problem solving (191), tangrams (12)

In the Classroom

If you are a math teacher at any level, this is a MUST-SEE (and share) site. Take the time to explore it for specific sections connected to your curriculum concepts. Students in a BYOD classroom can explore interactives on this mobile-friendly site. Mathigon is perfect for use on interactive whiteboards, projector, and classroom computers. Use Mathigon activities to excite and motivate math students. Some activities require reading so you may need to partner your weaker readers with a buddy. Create a link to games and activities on your class website or blog for students to explore at home. Use Mathigon with gifted learners to extend your current math curriculum.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Website Evaluator - ResearchReady.com

Grades
5 to 12
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The Website Evaluator takes you step-by-step through the process of evaluating any website. The site also creates a final report based on your input. Begin by adding the URL of ...more
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The Website Evaluator takes you step-by-step through the process of evaluating any website. The site also creates a final report based on your input. Begin by adding the URL of any website and clicking "Go." A sidebar set of questions appears alongside the site to guide you as you go. Questions consider purpose, accuracy, authority of the author and publisher, relevancy, and how recent the information is. Once finished, view responses and print or email them.

tag(s): evaluating sources (8), internet safety (97)

In the Classroom

Use the Website Evaluator as an integral part of your Internet safety, information literacy/research, or website evaluation lessons in any subject where you require online research. Demonstrate how to use the Evaluator on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Allow students to evaluate sites on their own. Share and compare printed evaluations on a classroom bulletin board or your class website (or wiki). Have students use the Evaluator to compare and contrast different websites to find the one that is the best fit for a particular need. Require that students include a site evaluation for any online source they use as part of a research project.

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Adventure '14 - Jason Elsom

Grades
K to 12
3 Favorites 1  Comments
Experience a worldwide, virtual, culture exchange in November, 2014. Adventure '14 is an opportunity to work with students from another culture. The only equipment needed is a computer,...more
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Experience a worldwide, virtual, culture exchange in November, 2014. Adventure '14 is an opportunity to work with students from another culture. The only equipment needed is a computer, webcam, reasonable Internet connection, and a projector. Signing up indicates an interest, not a commitment. Sign up requirements: contact information about the school or group, age range, and website address. Also, indicate if there is an interest in pairing up with others by subject, language, or interests. Although there are places to fill in Twitter account information, having a Twitter account is not required. Get to know about people in another culture, embrace the opportunity to work together on a global project, and create a website together (optional).

tag(s): cross cultural understanding (87), cultures (86)

In the Classroom

Consider the many ways your class could collaborate. Science students can collaborate on labs, history students on research, and math students can solve some of the world's most difficult equations together. ESL/ELL students might collaborate with students who want to know about their experiences where one does not speak the language.

Partner teachers can choose a collaborative platform students can use to brainstorm ideas they have about the other country and culture before they meet. Use a projector and Primary Wall (reviewed here, no membership required) to discuss and informally assess prior knowledge about the culture with whom they will be working. Once the project is underway, go back to Primary Wall occasionally, and add what they learned and whether it coincides with the students' original ideas. Ask the partner class if they will fill in the areas and ideas missed on your Primary Wall. Also, consider asking the partner school to blog together. It is amazing the improvement you will see in student writing when they know they have an authentic audience! If you never blogged before, you might want to check out TeachersFirst Blog Basics for the Classroom. Use the blogs as a way to discuss topics related to both culture AND your curriculum: environmental topics, different types of government, or simply day to day life.

Comments

I intend to use this. It sounds like a great idea. , MD, Grades: 1 - 1

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LessonPaths - MentorMob, Inc

Grades
K to 12
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Create, share, and explore learning lists of web-based resources with LessonPaths (formerly MentorMobEDU). Similar to Pinterest, but in a slide show format. This site shows thumbnails...more
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Create, share, and explore learning lists of web-based resources with LessonPaths (formerly MentorMobEDU). Similar to Pinterest, but in a slide show format. This site shows thumbnails of each resource. LessonPaths allows you to view and create "playlists." Browse through playlists by subject or keyword. Each playlist has links to online content correlated to the topics. As you browse through each playlist, choose Next to view an overview of each link. At the left side, roll over the list of steps to find out what to do at each stop on the playlist. Click within that link to go to the web content displayed. When ready, create an account and begin to create your own playlists.

tag(s): classroom management (89)

In the Classroom

Browse to find ready-made activities for classroom use. Create your own playlists for organizing classroom resources found on the web along with tasks to do at each place. Create playlists for students to view and/or add to as a whole class activity. Some ideas include things that use energy, food groups, or groups of items for primary level vocabulary/practice (clothing items, farm animals, clock faces for telling time, etc.). In lower grades, create very simple sequences of activities for students to try from a class computer center or at home. Since your directions will require reading, keep it very simple! In higher grades, make playlists for different subjects or units where you collect videos, images, classroom blogs and websites, etc. Share your playlists with students and parents by putting the link on your class website. Have them work through the tasks at their own pace. Challenge your older students to create their own playlists with thought-provoking questions as a product from a research project. For example, they can compile information about a disease and how it is transmitted, asking questions at each resource. (What a great way for them to read informational text and then generate questions that go further!) Teachers of Gifted or regular ed teachers trying to design independent tasks for gifted students to do will love the flexibility of the playlist format.

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CraftArt edu - Craft Media Network

Grades
4 to 12
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Learn, create, and connect with CraftArtEdu's free online "classes" on video. This colorful site offers free online "classes" on countless art and crafts topics. Topics range from wrapping...more
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Learn, create, and connect with CraftArtEdu's free online "classes" on video. This colorful site offers free online "classes" on countless art and crafts topics. Topics range from wrapping wire loops to fan fold blends to basic embroidery and much more. Join a class and receive step by step instruction. Find the free class section, and start your new learning adventure. Develop new talents and skills. Some of the videos are not in English, so preview (unless you are looking for language learning!). Don't miss the digital art tutorials about Photoshop!
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): crafts (34), holidays (129)

In the Classroom

Find projects for holidays or that tie in with current units of study on time periods in history, different cultures, or literature being read in class. In world language classes, share one of the videos in French or German and challenge students to follow along with the directions. Then have them try to make their own how-to videos to practice new vocabulary. Use these videos as examples of digital writing for information and have student groups create one of their own. Share this site with your "crafty" students for indoor recess or use the activities in family and consumer science. Share this link on your class website for students to find crafty ways to share knowledge in unusual displays. Some of the videos might even offer ideas they could use as science fair projects testing the strength of different materials.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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TeachersFirst's Editors' Choice Tools for Pretests - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This collection of resources was selected by TeachersFirst editors as the easiest or most useful tools for creating pretests, a must-have when working with gifted students in the regular...more
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This collection of resources was selected by TeachersFirst editors as the easiest or most useful tools for creating pretests, a must-have when working with gifted students in the regular classroom. This collection is part of a special section of TeachersFirst, Nourishing Gifted Through Technology in Any Classroom.

tag(s): differentiation (27), gifted (81)

In the Classroom

You may not always be able to pretest at the start of a new unit, and sometimes an informal assessment will tell you that a student is ready to move beyond the regular curriculum content right away. You may want to wait a day or two before offering a retest, since many truly gifted students will absorb or even seem to "intuit" the full unit of content very quickly after a short exposure. The great thing about using online pretests is that once you create them, you have them for the next year. Consider teaming up with other teachers in your subject/grade to build a library of pretests that you can share.

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Brief.ly - Brief.ly

Grades
K to 12
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Brief.ly is a simple way to share a "bundle" of links at the same time. Enter up to 30 links and captions you want to share (one per line or ...more
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Brief.ly is a simple way to share a "bundle" of links at the same time. Enter up to 30 links and captions you want to share (one per line or click the wrench for more options). Brief.ly will generate a unique URL. When opened, a Table of Contents page lists the sites included. When you open the bundle, each site appears and tabs appear along the top of the page that allow you to easily jump from one recommended site to the next. This site is very easy to use and helpful for all ages, as long as they can read. With your membership, you can edit the contents of your list later, without resending it or changing the single link.

tag(s): bookmarks (55), organizational skills (95)

In the Classroom

Brief.ly is a lifesaver for every classroom, teacher, or school. Whenever you are sharing multiple sites at centers, during small or whole group presentations, or even sites gathered for a research projects, Brief.ly takes away frustration and saves time! Save different content areas, subjects, or study links in one simple click. Gather all grade level websites on your school webpage, and list all classes. Unclutter your own class webpage or blog with just a few links. Sending links to parents or colleagues could not be any easier! Collaboration within classes, groups, or home is a snap! Improve organization for yourself and your class. As students work on group projects, they can share their link list easily. Use a class account so students do not have to register, and you can watch what they are using for sources.

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NCES Kids' Zone - NCES

Grades
4 to 12
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NCES Kids' Zone offers enrichment and informational data. Explore This Day in History, updated daily. Take a poll and compare your own answers with others. Try your problem solving...more
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NCES Kids' Zone offers enrichment and informational data. Explore This Day in History, updated daily. Take a poll and compare your own answers with others. Try your problem solving skills with the mindbender. Learn (and use) the word of the day. The Dare to Compare button leads to short quizzes where you can compare your knowledge with others. You can also explore data about your local schools and libraries and even find college information. Note that the upper menus do not work in all browsers, so not all areas of the site are readily accessible.

tag(s): charts and graphs (188), probability (112)

In the Classroom

Strike an interest in your school and community by finding out where you rank. Investigate college choices. After short quizzes, have a daily comparison of your students to see how they compare in civics, economics, geography, history, mathematics, and science at multiple grade levels. Inspire students to collect data and make their own graphs about school wide topics. Have students create an online graph using Amblegraph (reviewed here). Dig into probability problems to discover the odds.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Random Acts of Kindness - Random Acts of Kindness Foundation

Grades
K to 12
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Inspire people to practice kindness and pass it on to others. The Random Acts of Kindness (RAK) Foundation is a non-profit organization founded upon the powerful belief in kindness....more
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Inspire people to practice kindness and pass it on to others. The Random Acts of Kindness (RAK) Foundation is a non-profit organization founded upon the powerful belief in kindness. It is dedicated to providing resources and tools that encourage acts of kindness. Discover inspirational quotes, kindness ideas, and share your own ideas. Explore lesson plans, classroom materials, projects, ideas for courses, and RAK clubs. Discover research, videos, and stories about random acts of kindness. Sign up for the newsletter or join the blog.

tag(s): classroom management (89), emotions (27), service projects (18)

In the Classroom

Become a "RAKTIVIST" and start a kindness raid on unsuspecting communities, classes, or schools! Give children power and voice through their actions. Partner this with character education programs to make a difference in all the lives you touch. During social studies, find ways kindness has changed the world. Look for times in which kindness was thwarted, such as during civil wars, dictatorships, or wars. Start a research project on world leaders who have changed the world through nonviolence, education, or generosity. Explain the power of nonprofit organizations and all the lives affected. Look into your own community and school to find needs that are waiting for active, caring participants. Create school or classroom rules to promote the power of kindness. Challenge student to create "kindness" commercials. Share them using a tool such as SchoolTube reviewed here. Emotional Support or Autistic Support teachers may find some of the ideas here helpful for talking about how others feel and ways to show kindness in a very deliberate way.
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Chinese Checkers - Jerome Meriweather

Grades
1 to 9
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Put a technology twist on Chinese Checkers without losing any marbles! Play with 2, 4, or 6 players. Follow the score and number of moves. Just click on your color ...more
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Put a technology twist on Chinese Checkers without losing any marbles! Play with 2, 4, or 6 players. Follow the score and number of moves. Just click on your color choice to begin. The Help page wasn't working at the time of this review.

tag(s): gifted (81), logic (201), puzzles (183)

In the Classroom

Introduce Chinese checkers on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Offer this game as a writing prompt for students to learn how to write directions. Give it as a challenge without any spoken or visual directions. Challenge student groups to plan and explain a strategy to be the winner with the fewest moves. Have students determine ways to earn extra points in the game. Share this site with your gifted students for some extra mindbending challenges. Substitutes will want to keep this site tucked in their bag of tricks.
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Young Authors Guide - Denise Hill

Grades
2 to 12
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The Young Authors Guide provides an extensive list of contests and online literary magazines that accept submissions from student authors. Each entry includes a short synopsis of the...more
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The Young Authors Guide provides an extensive list of contests and online literary magazines that accept submissions from student authors. Each entry includes a short synopsis of the publication's target audience and genres. Click the link directly under the Publications title to view contests for student writing. Scroll through all entries, or view by monthly deadline dates. All entries include a direct link to the website offering contests or submissions. Be sure to check out the link to an article with advice on how to submit work for publications and how to avoid contest scams.

tag(s): competitions (11), creative writing (137), poetry (213), short stories (19)

In the Classroom

Encourage students to submit writing for publication throughout the school year. Use this resource to find magazines and publications to fit individual student strengths. Share a link to the Young Authors Guide on your class website for students to access (and submit publications) from home. Use the Young Author's Guide as a resource for finding ideas to use as writing prompts for stories, poems, and more. Share this site with your gifted students to extend their writing reach beyond the classroom and school community. Be sure that they have parent permission to submit, and have them keep a record as part of their personal writing portfolio of what they submit where.

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Easy Street Prompts - Writing Blogs

Grades
5 to 12
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Throw away the traditional story starters and inspire writing (and art) with Easy Street Prompts. The prompts include videos, random words, and picture prompts that will truly inspire...more
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Throw away the traditional story starters and inspire writing (and art) with Easy Street Prompts. The prompts include videos, random words, and picture prompts that will truly inspire you and make you think. There are over a thousand prompts in the archives, even though the site does not seem to be adding new ones anymore.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): creative writing (137), descriptive writing (31), journals (17), writing prompts (87)

In the Classroom

Save this website to your favorites or link from your class web page. These inspirational ideas are perfect for journals, quick writes, or to develop into a full story or essay. There are plenty of unusual ideas to give even your most reluctant writer or artist an inspirational nudge. ESL/ELL students can be motivated easily with the video or picture prompts. Share these prompts with your gifted students for some "out of the box" writing ideas. Keep these creative ideas in your "emergency" lesson plan folder for substitutes or for your own spontaneous writing needs. Challenge students to share writing aloud in a podcast format with websites such as PodOmatic (reviewed here) or Spreaker (reviewed here). Create a Prezi (reviewed here) or PowerPoint with artwork or quotes created.
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