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What Browser - Google

Grades
3 to 12
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The tagline, says it all: "World, meet your browser." Use this site to identify the browser you are using, learn specific features and how it works, and identify useful tweaks. ...more
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The tagline, says it all: "World, meet your browser." Use this site to identify the browser you are using, learn specific features and how it works, and identify useful tweaks. Click on "Try a new browser" to view other browser options to identify the differences, understand the uses of browsers, and learn what exactly a web browser is.

tag(s): browser (6), search engines (65)

In the Classroom

Students can use different browsers when starting class, visit this site, and learn specifics of their browsers. Consider a group of students each looking at a different browser and reporting back to the group about their specific browser. Alternatively, use a jigsaw approach by having student number off in their groups. Have each number 1 meet and work on a specific browser (and the same with the other members.) Students in the group work together to understand the browser and then report bac to their group about their specific browser.
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Google's: Help your students become better searchers - Google

Grades
4 to 12
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Find lesson plans and presentations to teach your students "how to search," all ready for your classroom. The lesson plans are divided up by category and ability level. There ...more
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Find lesson plans and presentations to teach your students "how to search," all ready for your classroom. The lesson plans are divided up by category and ability level. There are beginner, intermediate, and advanced levels. The five main categories include: Picking the right search term, Understanding search results, Narrowing a search to get the best results, Searching for evidence for research tasks, and Evaluating credibility of sources. To access the lessons you MUST have a Google account. There are also current and past training sessions: Power Searching, Beyond the First Five, Creative Commons, When Time is Tight, and several others. These video clips are open to all and appropriate for various grade levels/subjects. There are also occasional contests listed on the site.

tag(s): creative commons (21), search engines (65), search strategies (30)

In the Classroom

If you are planning an inquiry or research unit, this site would be a good starting point. These lessons could end up saving you class time, and your students won't become frustrated while looking for their research information. Present the first lesson using your projector or interactive whiteboard. Next, have your students try to search the answer for one of the more complicated questions on "A Google a Day" reviewed here. Once that is done, or students give up in frustration, have each student invest in their education by deciding if they need to complete the basic, intermediate, or advanced lesson for Understanding search results. Group students who need basic instruction together, intermediate together, etc. Let them work through the lessons on their own, helping each other. Once they have completed their lesson, have them test their skills on "A Google a Day" again reviewed here to see if they need to go on to the next set of lessons, i.e. intermediate or advanced, or if they can move on to the next lesson. View the video clips (Live Trainings) to freshen up your own knowledge or share them on your projector or interactive whiteboard with your students.
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Get Creative - Creative Commons

Grades
4 to 12
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Find a great explanation of what Creative Commons is, including the ethical use of electronic information. This site offers highly interactive explanations that are simple to use, exciting...more
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Find a great explanation of what Creative Commons is, including the ethical use of electronic information. This site offers highly interactive explanations that are simple to use, exciting to share, and extremely informative. Share with others in your district, with your students, and where parents can also see and discuss with their students.

tag(s): copyright (47), creative commons (21)

In the Classroom

Be sure to place this link in a prominent location on a wiki, site, or blog for discussion and review by students. Allow students to remix the video (really, you are allowed!) to show specific examples of copyright and the use of creative commons in your class. As you teach about ethical use of electronic media, compare and contrast what users are permitted to do under Copyright vs. Creative Commons. Conduct a mock debate where students play the roles of writers, artists, publishers, and end users. Even if you are teaching computer literacy skills, the understanding of "rights" is essential in knowing what is possible vs what is ethical (and legal). Start with this video.
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Springfield Library-Google Options - Joyce Valenza

Grades
4 to 12
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Find a collection of Google search tools all in one place! For those trying to figure out all of the wonderful options for searching on Google, this is the site. ...more
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Find a collection of Google search tools all in one place! For those trying to figure out all of the wonderful options for searching on Google, this is the site. It was created using GlogsterEDU reviewed here which makes this site interactive. Just click on the type of Google search you want to learn about, and you will be there! Whether you need to search for books online, scholarly articles, or want to search the New York Times or the Washington Post, this is the place to start. Whether your search is professional, for research, or personal, make it easy on yourself and start with this site.

tag(s): search engines (65)

In the Classroom

Share on your projector or interactive whiteboard to give kids an overview--or explore yourself to learn all the options! This is a great resource for searching through different tools. Students could each take one of the sites for video and dissect it to look for things like intended audience, subject matter it's best for, and advantages and disadvantages of the site as a source. This is a great link to share on your class website for students (and parents) to use at home.

TV and Yearbook Classes: The links under "Copyright-friendly" would be a great starting point for a dialogue on what is fair or unfair to use, and would be a wealth of resources for students as they work to complete projects and pages. TV: The student video portion as a go-to for high-quality student-produced content is a must for any class in production. Have students share news from around the world posting on your class Wiki. Not familiar with wikis? Check out the TeachersFirst's Wiki Walk-Through. Have student groups "Advertise" different Google tools by doing a live demo on projector or interactive whiteboard for the class. Then use a poll such as Flisti, reviewed here, to find out which tool students vote as "most useful."
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Taking the Mystery Out of Copyright - Library of Congress

Grades
3 to 12
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The Library of Congress created this animated series of quick, short videos explaining what copyright is all about and why it is important for your students to protect their creations....more
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The Library of Congress created this animated series of quick, short videos explaining what copyright is all about and why it is important for your students to protect their creations. There is a timeline of some of the milestone copyright laws, frequently asked pertinent questions such as, "Is it okay to use someone else's work or for anyone to use my work?" and everything you need for actually registering a copyright electronically. For those of you who may choose to use a printed version of these materials, you can click on the link to view a plain text version of all the activities. Students are never too young or too old to learn about and be reminded about copyright responsibilities.

tag(s): copyright (47), plagiarism (35)

In the Classroom

Students have become "copy and paste" fanatics, but do they know the answer to, "If the material is on the Internet can I use it?" Even though they might not see a copyright notice on a website, that doesn't mean they're free to copy whatever they see or hear. Project these no-nonsense, impressionable videos on your classroom whiteboard or projector to set the tone for expectations when doing research and other projects, or use the printable versions, (these may be more adaptable and appropriate for older students), to emphasize your position on plagerism. Be sure to provide this link on your class website.

You may want to take it full circle by having the class compose and submit a song, poem, or other work to the Library of Congress to register a copyright. Be aware that there is a fee to submit the application, so you might want to consider doing a whole class project to send as one registration.
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Twurdy - twurdy.com

Grades
K to 12
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Twurdy is web search that includes a readability index! Think of the implications: Everyone has different reading abilities. Some people searching the web are seven or eight...more
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Twurdy is web search that includes a readability index! Think of the implications: Everyone has different reading abilities. Some people searching the web are seven or eight year old children, while others are in high school or beyond. Twurdy provides access to search results that suit individuals' reading levels, by providing an easy color coded system to help you quickly determine how simple or hard the page will be to understand. The beauty is that it is not an extra step! Twurdy is powered by Google. Try it right now. It only takes a few seconds. Just go to the Twurdy website (by clicking on the title in this review) and copy/paste the URL - http://www.teachersfirst.com/index.cfm in the search box. Not only will you see Twurdy's value, you will have the added bonus of discovering our TeachersFirst website if you are not already a frequent user. While this site could be independently used by intermediate and secondary students, teachers of the primary grades may also find this site useful as a professional resource.

tag(s): readability (8), search engines (65), search strategies (30)

In the Classroom

Twurdy is useful for all grades and subjects. Teachers can spend hours looking for age/grade appropriate websites to display on classroom whiteboards, include in webquests, and recommend for usage with assignments. Save valuable time by finding the information that is most appropriate for your students. This will mean that more time can be spent actually getting the assignment done, rather than clicking through material that is either too difficult or too simplistic to use. Bookmark this site in your favorites and provide the link on your class web page to save yourself and your students a lot of time finding what you are looking for. Remember that you can "organize" recommended sites for students using a tool such as LiveBinders (reviewed here, share them with readability tips using Diigo reviewed here, or even color code them by reading level for younger students using Symbaloo reviewed here.

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Sweet Search - Dulcinea Media, Inc.

Grades
K to 12
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Use Sweet Search to search the web for student friendly and informative sites for students of all ages to use. Simply enter your search term in the box. Use "Get ...more
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Use Sweet Search to search the web for student friendly and informative sites for students of all ages to use. Simply enter your search term in the box. Use "Get Widget" to place on a wiki, site, or blog for easy access by students. Use resources listed on the search page for more effective searching and specific lists for various subjects such as Social Studies. Although the search tool does not include TeachersFirst's teacher-friendly review and classroom use suggestions, the sites they find are solid.

tag(s): search engines (65), search strategies (30)

In the Classroom

Provide Sweet Search for your students to find some of the best student friendly material on the web. For older students, evaluate Sweet Search with other search engines to determine which provides the best information.

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Symbaloo EDU - Symbaloo BV

Grades
K to 12
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Create, find, and share visually appealing Webmixes (web based screens of link "tiles") to share web resources. Choose EDU Teachers site tour (a blue tile) to learn more about Symbaloo...more
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Create, find, and share visually appealing Webmixes (web based screens of link "tiles") to share web resources. Choose EDU Teachers site tour (a blue tile) to learn more about Symbaloo EDU or begin exploring color-coded links on your own. Choose the EDU Tools WebMix to find links to classroom resources for social networking, video and image tools, and much more. Other WebMixes designed specifically for educators include widgets for classroom use, educational headlines, and much more. Tailor web resources to your individual need by creating your own WebMixes. Add tiles to instantly connect students with the resources you choose. Accounts are free but require a password (and email verification). Click "Edit WebMix" to change the background, rename the webmix, and edit the tiles. Link tiles to website URL's or RSS feed links. Hover over a tile to bring up a simple menu. Click "edit" to paste the URL of the resource, enter a title, and change icons and colors. Select any name to be displayed on the tile. Be sure to click "Done editing" when finished, and then "Share" to choose publicly or privately with friends. Use the embed code to embed directly into your class website or blog. Download the free iPhone or Android apps for use on mobile phones or use Symbaloo in your tablet browser as it has been maximized for use on these devices.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): bookmarks (60), DAT device agnostic tool (196), gamification (65)

In the Classroom

Be sure to know the URL's of the resources you are planning to share or have them open in other tabs to copy/paste. To share you must be able to copy/paste URLs (web addresses). Have older students create their own webmixes, but this resource is best used as a teacher sharing tool for sharing links, RSS feeds, and other resources for students to use in specific projects or as general course links. If shared with the world, the webmix can be viewed by others and is public.

Create a webmix of the most used sites for your class and first demonstrate how the webmix works on a projector or interactive whiteboard if you have special instructions or color coding for its use. Some examples include links to copyright free images, online textbooks, or online tools such as Google Docss, ThingLink, Glogster, and more. Link to teacher web pages, webquests, resource sites for your subject, and any other resource that is helpful for students. Consider creating a login for the whole class to update with suggestions from class members. Use this AS your class website. Color code the tiles on a webmix for younger, non-reader, or ESL/ELL students. For example, color each subject differently from the others. Differentiate by color coding varying levels of skills practice at a classroom computer center or to distinguish homework practice sites from in-class sites. Differentiate difficulty levels using the various colors enabling you to list resources for both your learning support students and gifted students and all in between. Use color to organize tools for different projects or individual students. You may want to share this resource with parents at Back to School Night and the color-coding system for differentiation. This will help parents (and students) find what sites are ideal for their levels. Be sure to link or embed your webmix on a computer center in your room for easy access. Share a review site webmix for parents and students to access at home before tests, as well. Team up with other teachers in your subject/grade to create chapter by chapter webmixes for all your students.

Challenge you gifted students to curate and collaborate on their own webmixes as a curriculum extension activity on topics such as climate change or pros and cons of genetically engineered food. They can use color coding to sort sites by bias (or neutrality) as well as to group subtopics under the overall theme. Use the student-made webmixes with other students to raise the overall level of discussion in your class or as an extra credit challenge. If you embed the webmix in a class wiki, all students can respond with questions and comments for the gifted students to moderate and reply, creating a student-led community of learners.

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YoLink - TigerLogic Corp.

Grades
4 to 12
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Go beyond a normal search with YoLink. YoLink looks into pages and documents for context based searching. One click tools seamlessly edit and use the content in a new document. ...more
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Go beyond a normal search with YoLink. YoLink looks into pages and documents for context based searching. One click tools seamlessly edit and use the content in a new document. Use the desktop application or the browser plug in. Add a search widget to your blog or site. The desktop application requires Windows. Browser plug-ins can be used with Firefox, Chrome, or Internet Explorer on Windows or Mac. Use the search bar in the upper right hand corner of the YoLink site to search your term. View the search results not only by a title and link, but also excerpts of paragraphs with the search term highlighted. Click on the excerpt to be taken to the exact spot on the website where it is found! No more scanning page(s.) Click to check the box next to the excerpt, and choose from options in the upper left to star, share (with a social network,) or save (to Google Docs.) Others can use the search tool right from the box at top right to "see into" their search results with new tools.

tag(s): note taking (32), search engines (65), search strategies (30)

In the Classroom

Familiarize yourself with the specifics of YoLink by viewing the information on the front page.

Be sure to teach copyright (for material instantly copied to a Google doc) and how to use good keywords to search when using this tool. Students may find comparing results of YoLink with those of Google, Wolfram Alpha, Yahoo, and other popular search engines very productive. Compare the findings on an interactive whiteboard or projector to discuss not only the usefulness of the search results but also how different words in the search query can bring different results.

Use this site as you discuss how to search and use materials on the web. Practice showing different searches and aspects of the searches that are useful. Challenge students to use these sites for individual research projects. Use YoLink to find specific information about a curriculum topic and use the search results to begin discussion of the concepts.
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Bingle.nu - bingle.nu

Grades
K to 12
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Use Bingle to search topics of interest and find results from both Bing and Google. Simply enter your search term. Narrow your search for shopping, images, news, videos, etc. ...more
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Use Bingle to search topics of interest and find results from both Bing and Google. Simply enter your search term. Narrow your search for shopping, images, news, videos, etc.

In the Classroom

Provide different search engines for students to use. Many students will obviously prefer one over the other and this is one more search engine that students can use. As an introduction to searching, provide a list of search engines and provide the task to rate each search engine and the results that are obtained. Discuss the top results as well as features of each search engine that make it user friendly, etc. Rate the top results to determine relevance to the search term as well as use in class.
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Goofram - goofram.com

Grades
K to 12
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Looking for the most from your search? Use Goofram to find the best of both Google and Wolfram alpha all in one place. View top Google searches using Safesearch as ...more
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Looking for the most from your search? Use Goofram to find the best of both Google and Wolfram alpha all in one place. View top Google searches using Safesearch as well as Wolfram alpha (which include definitions and abundant resources.)

tag(s): resources (112), search engines (65)

In the Classroom

This site is very simple to use. Simply type in the term you are searching and click "search."

This site is as safe as any other search engine. Just be sure students are aware of the consequences of misusing the search engine.

Use Goofram the next time that you use search in your classes. Discuss the difference between each side of the screen where both parts appear. What is the advantage of Wolfram Alpha vs. Google? Use this site as you discuss how to search and use materials on the web. Practice showing different searches and aspects of the searches that are useful. Challenge students to use these sites for individual research projects.
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Creative Commons Search - Creative Common

Grades
4 to 12
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Find digital images that are available for use without violating copyright. This search tool finds images licensed for use under Creative Commons licensing. While most major search...more
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Find digital images that are available for use without violating copyright. This search tool finds images licensed for use under Creative Commons licensing. While most major search engines have advanced features the allow you to filter out content by copyright privileges, the CC search website makes is easy and convenient. Be sure to READ the information about verifying licensing. The results are somewhat cluttered but provide extensive options that can be legally (and ethically) used in wikis, blogs, reports, and more, as long as you provide the attribution information. What a fabulous tool for students to use for interactive or traditional projects!

tag(s): air (163), copyright (47)

In the Classroom

Teaching students to understand and respect copyright of digital information can be difficult and overwhelming. The first step in helping students understand digital copyright is to get them to explore the terms of use and copyright of a variety of information. Create a scavenger hunt for students to find the terms of service and/or copyright for common websites. Once they realize that not all information is "free" for them to use, introduce the Creative Commons website and the symbols that are used to describe how the content is licensed by the owner. Use an interactive whiteboard or projector to demonstrate searching using the CC search site. Perform searches that yield results that show several different types of licenses. Discuss each type using scenarios of how the information can and cannot be used. As an extension activity for this site, students can create their own work and publish the work using a creative commons license. The work can be as simple as using a digital picture or as complex as creating their own derivative artwork, such as a collage or "photoshopped" image. It can be published on a commercial site such as flickr or on your school webpage. Make sure to follow any school guidelines before publishing student work. Perhaps you can create a class wiki of annotated creative images created by students with explanations of where they found the "parts" and how they created the original works from these parts. What a wonderful model to share with future students, as well. Teachers will also appreciate being able to find images you can freely use on class web pages and in online project samples, etc. (with attribution).

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Kwout - kwout

Grades
1 to 12
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Use kwout to grab a screenshot or quote of any web site to post anywhere else you need. Show snippets of information from anywhere on the web and insert on ...more
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Use kwout to grab a screenshot or quote of any web site to post anywhere else you need. Show snippets of information from anywhere on the web and insert on any site, blog, or wiki where items can be embedded. Add a "my kwout" badge to your blog or website that will display your quoted items in one place. Here is a sample "kwout" of the Kwout site:

kwout | A brilliant way to quote via kwout

tag(s): bookmarks (60), quotations (23)

In the Classroom

Use kwout by adding a bookmarklet to your browser. Users will need to know how to add bookmarklets in the specific browser being used. You can test out kwout by using the demo on their home page, but this will slow down your ability to kwout pages as you browse the web. Network administrators may block download and installation of bookmarklets on district machines. Be sure to check with your IT department on the possibility of adding bookmarklets. Users of kwout need knowledge of using embed codes to display quoted image maps in the site of their choice.

After adding the bookmarklet to your toolbar, find a website you wish to quote. Click the kwout bookmarklet and view the popup screenshot of the webpage being viewed. Drag your mouse to choose the portion of the screenshot wishing to be quoted. Click "Cut out" to cut that portion of the screenshot that will now become an image map and hyperlink. Copy the embed code that is displayed to paste into the site being used to show the image map.

Add the bookmarklet to your browser window of computers authorized to do so. Be certain to only quote items that are appropriate for viewing and use in the classroom. Require students to show work prior to embedding in a blog, wiki, or other site to be certain of appropriateness.

Use as a way to aggregate content in one place. This tool is best suited for teacher use below grade 6 because unless your students are familiar with embed codes! As students find quoted material, use for discussions of different viewpoints or content needed to understand a specific subject area or topic. For example, have students create a wiki collection of kwouts to show different perspectives on an environmental issue such as global warming. Use teacher-made kwouts as prompts for blog posts or free writing activities in the classroom. Find a specific kwout (quote) that students must respond to and embed in a blog, wiki, or site of your choice. After students read the quote, provide time to respond to the quote and post their thoughts in a blog post or other type of writing. If students require more information or wish to read more, advise them to click on the quote to view the entire resource. View snippets or quotes from a variety of sites for students to analyze. Use this idea for many subject areas including history (multiple viewpoints of conflicts), environmental or economic problems, or other issues. You can also use kwouts to provide a collection of links to review and enrichment sites on your class web page. Non-readers will be able to "see" the sites and now where to click.
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Ecosia - ecosia.org

Grades
K to 12
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Looking for a different way to search the internet and do good for the world at the same time? Search using Ecosia and save areas of the rainforest with ...more
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Looking for a different way to search the internet and do good for the world at the same time? Search using Ecosia and save areas of the rainforest with every search. Learn how they do it with their informative video and frequently asked questions.

tag(s): ecology (135), search engines (65)

In the Classroom

Use Ecosia along with other search engines for the same information and compare the results and order of the most popular searches. Share the informative video with your class on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Discuss differences in search results, display of information, and other factors. Use as examples in media and internet safety classes.
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Common Craft - Lee Lefeever

Grades
K to 12
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No special skills needed. Just watch and learn. Embarrassed to say you don't know what all the "new web 2.0" terms are all about? This is for you (and probably ...more
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No special skills needed. Just watch and learn. Embarrassed to say you don't know what all the "new web 2.0" terms are all about? This is for you (and probably for your students' parents, as well). Common Craft uses a very simple, visual method of explaining all the latest technologies so that everyone can understand, using short video clips narrated by a positive and respectful voice. The next time you hear someone talking about RSS feeds or some other new doo-dad, stop here first so you will know what they are talking about. Did you think you were the only one who did not know? Don't be overwhelmed. This site has incredible popularity because there are LOADS of people quietly questioning -- just like you. 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): blogs (88), media literacy (58), movies (64), tutorials (47), video (253), wikis (19)

In the Classroom

Start by looking at any video that catches your eye, but don't be afraid to search for other topics that have you wondering. You will definitely want to make this channel a Favorite to find information to keep you informed. Share it on your teacher web page to help out your parents, too! Create an account to add as favorites and subscribe to the channel to inform you when new videos are added.

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Compfight - Compfight

Grades
K to 12
5 Favorites 0  Comments
Discover a slick way to find Creative Commons pictures (pictures you are ALLOWED to use without copyright problems, simply by giving credit). Compfight searches Flickr pictures and...more
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Discover a slick way to find Creative Commons pictures (pictures you are ALLOWED to use without copyright problems, simply by giving credit). Compfight searches Flickr pictures and locates those with licenses that permit use in other activities and projects. Enter text or tags, and Compfight does the rest, providing thumbnail images for you to choose from. After you search, be sure you have checked the box in the LEFT sidebar of the search results, specifying that you want Creative Commons images, NOT commercial ones. Click to search again, if necessary. Choose from the results that appear below the dotted line. (Those above the line are images you must pay for!) Click on the image you like and double-check the license information under item 1 to be sure it is available for non-commercial use with attribution and can be used for "derivative works." Click the image itself to copy and paste its URL to use in image credits. Remember that Creative Commons DOES require that you give proper credit!

tag(s): creative commons (21), images (265), search engines (65)

In the Classroom

Users need to be able to use good search terms to find the best pictures possible as well as knowing how to save images on their computer. Use in the classroom any time that an image is needed for projects, even if it is not going to be put on a website for others to see. Be sure students are aware that any time another person's image is used, they must give full credit for it, even if that owner cannot see it. Demonstrate Compfight on a projector or interactive whiteboard so students know how to use it. Student groups can use Compfight to collectively find the best image to use for a project. Have students create a multimedia presentation using ThinkLink, reviewed here. For example, students studying renewable energy can use Compfight to find images of various renewable energy sources, then explain them using ThingLink. Teachers can collect Creative Commons images for use on their interactive whiteboard for sorting activities (monocots and dicots, producers and consumers, etc). Never assume that your students, even the gifted ones, understand about giving proper credit and only using copyright-safe images (CC or public domain). Compfight makes it easier. Be sure to hold students accountable by including a "digital citizenship" category in your project rubric, requiring proper credit for all images. You will want to spot check a few of the URLs to be sure they are actually correct credits. Share Compfight as an important tool on your class web page, wiki, or blog so students can access it anywhere, anytime.
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Refdesk - Refdesk

Grades
2 to 12
0 Favorites 0  Comments
Use this free site for finding the best information on the Internet. Enter the search term directly into the fields you wish. Refdesk provides many search engines to choose from. ...more
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Use this free site for finding the best information on the Internet. Enter the search term directly into the fields you wish. Refdesk provides many search engines to choose from. Use the dictionary and thesaurus, search literature, scan news, or read about articles, pictures, or headlines of the day. Refdesk provides one place to find an abundant amount of information at your fingertips. Students should be cautioned to not click on ads which are scattered throughout the site.

tag(s): news (261), thesaurus (24)

In the Classroom

Use this link in the resources section of your wiki, blog, or website for students to quickly find or use information from the Internet. Build information literacy as your students do research. As a beginning activity, have students use the same search term but use different search engines and identify the differences in the top results. Use Refdesk to find interesting information for writing prompts or discussions/blog posts for the day. Use this site for research projects, homework help, and more.

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Spezify (beta) - Spezify

Grades
K to 12
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Get an overview of any web search visually using Spezify. Spezify is a search engine that provides both visual and verbal results for the search terms you enter. It pulls ...more
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Get an overview of any web search visually using Spezify. Spezify is a search engine that provides both visual and verbal results for the search terms you enter. It pulls in images from Flickr and anywhere on the web as well as print excerpts, and (coming soon) video. Click on the image or text box you wish to read just as you click on text in search results lists. Visually display the "big picture" on any topic. Searching "edison inventions" brings up pictures and articles for visual learners, ELL/ESL students, or non-readers to get the gist of the topic at a quick glance. Spezify also suggests possible additional search terms and related topics across the top of the page as white text within the narrow black stripe. If you click the plus sign (+) next to one of these terms, it will add that term to your search, narrowing the results. If you click on the word itself, Spezify will search that term instead (not adding it to your previous search). There does not appear to be any specific ranking (as Google has) or sorting of the results by reputation, popularity, etc. No "about" information is provided to explain how Spezify determines which results show first. The tool is still in beta and provides a way for you to provide feedback, as well. NOTE: as with any online image search, you should be careful what you enter as search terms, since Spezify will pull up images without any "filter."

In the Classroom

Use Spezify on an interactive whiteboard or projector as you introduce a new topic in science or social studies or when the class asks "What is ____?" . With very young students or non-readers, use Spezify to help them find information they can understand and to inspire them to try to read some of the short text excerpts alongside the images. Activate students' prior knowledge as they recognize the images and remark, "I didn't know Edison was the one who invented that!" Visually show the "big picture" on any topic. As you teach research skills, try a comparison of Spezify results with Google results for both functionality of the search engine and reputability of the results. NOTE: Preview any search terms you plan to display in class if the terms could possibly bring up inappropriate images. You may need to adjust your terms. Of course your students know what they are supposed to do if something inappropriate comes up when using a search themselves, right? If you have not discussed this, now is the time!

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Video: Web Search Strategies in Plain English - Common Craft

Grades
4 to 12
2 Favorites 0  Comments
  
This site offers a VERY short video (under 3-minutes) that offers tips on how to get the best responses to your web searches. This is a perfect addition to your ...more
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This site offers a VERY short video (under 3-minutes) that offers tips on how to get the best responses to your web searches. This is a perfect addition to your research unit, helping students to find information FASTER. Despite a paid membership model, Common Craft still offers this video for free, but it does have a watermark saying, "For evaluation only." If you wish to share this with a group, they will need to view it on individual/partner computers (or IOS devices) or on a projector that has a zoom function to enlarge a selected area of the screen.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): search engines (65)

In the Classroom

Share the video clip on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students apply the tips from this video during independent or cooperative learning research projects.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Visual Dictionary Online - Merriam-Webster and QA International

Grades
3 to 12
2 Favorites 0  Comments
Be sure to save this site in your favorites for your visual learners! As its name implies, this dictionary 'defines' the word a student types by providing a detailed, labeled ...more
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Be sure to save this site in your favorites for your visual learners! As its name implies, this dictionary 'defines' the word a student types by providing a detailed, labeled graphic. In 15 category themes, there are over 6000 images and 20,000 definitions available. Use the index for easy access to the words you need locate. Once the image is seen, click on the audio button to hear the correct pronunciation. Scroll down the page to find words and phrases that relate to the word being investigated. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): images (265)

In the Classroom

Science teachers will love this site. Most of the 15 categories revolve around science terminology that benefit from images. ESL and learning support students who have difficulty with verbal definitions will also find this resource helpful. Speech and Language teachers can use the Clothing and Articles categories to build student vocabulary. Use your whiteboard alongside your science text to clarify terms. Encourage students to study for tests by perusing this site.
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