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Taggstar - Taggstar.com

Grades
K to 12
3 Favorites 0  Comments
  
Taggstar is a widget for your website that makes photos interactive and exciting. It works on most sites -- except WordPress. They hope to include WordPress in the future. Install ...more
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Taggstar is a widget for your website that makes photos interactive and exciting. It works on most sites -- except WordPress. They hope to include WordPress in the future. Install the widget using directions provided after creating an account. Point and click to create hot spots on images. Add a video, music, or links to hot spots. Then click the hot spot on your image to view information and go to the link. View the example on the homepage to learn more about how to use this "cool tool."

tag(s): bookmarks (60), images (274)

In the Classroom

Use digital images of lab experiments or class activities for sharing on a class wiki or blog with clickable enhancements offering additional information. If individual computers aren't available, share the images on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Since audio options are available, even non-readers can use this tool! Have students add links or even a blog reaction or explanation to their project or experiment image. Use the site for making a photography or art portfolio blog. Have students annotate images to explain their work or various techniques they used. World language or ESL/ELL teachers can enhance images with links to sound files or other explanations for better understanding. Use in world language to label items in an image with the correct words in that language. Young students can write simple sentences to practice language skills while explaining about a favorite picture or activity. Use in Science to explain the experiment or parts of an animal or organism. Use in a Consumer Science class to explain cooking or other techniques. Consider creating a class account for student groups to use together. Teachers can create a Taggstar of an image with questions and links that students must investigate to respond as a self-directed learning activity. An image of a tree could have questions and links about types of leaves, photosynthesis, and the seasons, for example.

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Next Vista for Learning - Rushton Hurley

Grades
3 to 12
5 Favorites 0  Comments
   
Next Vista offers Learning videos for teachers looking for alternatives to YouTube. At the time of this review, they offered over 1,000 videos (most useful for in the classroom). Videos...more
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Next Vista offers Learning videos for teachers looking for alternatives to YouTube. At the time of this review, they offered over 1,000 videos (most useful for in the classroom). Videos are made by teachers and/or students. Search by three main topics: Light Bulbs, Global View, or Seeing Service. Better yet, use the right sidebar to search by topic: Math, Science, World Languages, History & Culture, Performing Arts, and more.Next Vista offers an extensive collection of career videos to use as a resource for exploring and discovering career opportunities. View videos directly on site or share using the link or embed code provided. Throughout the school year, Next Vista hosts video creation contests for students and teachers. Submit your own videos less than 5 minutes in length using directions provided. They even offer small prizes for winners.

tag(s): africa (178), asia (72), careers (133), computers (92), europe (75), literature (275), musical instruments (47), musical notation (37), north america (19), parts of speech (67), poetry (225), shakespeare (131), south america (39), speech (92), video (269)

In the Classroom

Explore the various topics to share with your students. In the math section, share the "How to Show Your Work" video on your projector or interactive whiteboard. There are useful videos in all sections, offered at a variety of levels. Bookmark and save this site for use throughout the year for student and teacher created videos. Challenge students to create a video to submit for one of the site's contests; who knows, they may win!

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DynaMath - Scholastic

Grades
3 to 6
1 Favorites 0  Comments
   
Check out this highly interactive online math magazine featuring rigorous practice problems reinforcing Common Core skills. The online magazine is offered in correspondence with the...more
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Check out this highly interactive online math magazine featuring rigorous practice problems reinforcing Common Core skills. The online magazine is offered in correspondence with the print magazine (available at an additional cost). The print magazine is not necessary to use the online features of the free digital edition (Click at left on "Try a Sample Issue" to see the free digital edition with videos and activities!) These articles are high interest and worth exploring a bit. Click on images to view the full digital magazine, browse through pages, or visit links to vocabulary, games, and videos. Choose also to view in teacher or student view. Separate links include teacher resources and skills sheets for printing and using.

tag(s): addition (238), angles (86), charts and graphs (194), division (167), fractions (235), geometric shapes (163), mean (25), multiplication (220), place value (55), subtraction (198), symmetry (54), time (141)

In the Classroom

Read an article each week together using your interactive whiteboard or projector. Try the math activities together to incorporate your language arts and math. Be sure to include this site on your class web page for students to access both in and outside of class for further practice. This site is excellent for enrichment and reading practice for fluency and comprehension. Use DynaMath as a classroom center. Have students explore articles and share with classmates. Use as part of a Guided Reading lesson to integrate math with language arts (and also science or social studies!).
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Punctuation Campground - Harcourt School

Grades
2 to 8
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This simple site asks you to add all necessary punctuation to sentences. You can try again until all marks are in the correct places. Options include getting a hint, solving, ...more
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This simple site asks you to add all necessary punctuation to sentences. You can try again until all marks are in the correct places. Options include getting a hint, solving, starting over, or checking.

tag(s): punctuation (42)

In the Classroom

Use this site to review for a punctuation test. This site makes for engaging morning work on your interactive whiteboard or projector while students write the sentence at their desks (or better yet, work on individual laptops). Bookmark this site on your classroom computers for extra practice when teaching direct quotations. ESL/ELL students and learning support students may find the extra practice useful. Since there are no directions or examples, you may need to demonstrate how to use this site before the students can use it.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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News in Levels - newsinlevels.com

Grades
K to 8
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Find high interest, leveled news articles (and lessons) for English language learners. Although this site was designed for ESL/ELL it could be very useful in any elementary classroom...more
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Find high interest, leveled news articles (and lessons) for English language learners. Although this site was designed for ESL/ELL it could be very useful in any elementary classroom looking for informational texts that can be differentiated for various reading levels (great for meeting Common Core standards). This tool could be used with any readers to increase comprehension, fluency, and vocabulary skills. There are three difficulty levels. Complete the Test Your Level exercise in the ESHOP section (free) to find out what level will be best. Many of the lessons include audio and practice exercises. In addition, interesting pictures pique the students' interest. The same story is presented in all of the various levels. The vocabulary at lower levels repeats at the higher levels with more vocabulary added as the level increases. Definitions for the vocabulary words, below the reading, assists with English meanings. The audio is hosted on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, you could always listen the audio at home and bring it to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid, reviewed here, to download the audio from YouTube. At the time of this review, most of the news story content was fine for all ages. However, please preview the story before you share it with your class to be certain it is appropriate.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): guided reading (47), news (261), reading comprehension (116)

In the Classroom

Add this website to your classroom computers, websites, and newsletters for parents of ESL/ELL students or beginning readers. This tool is especially helpful at the beginning of the year, as you are learning students' reading levels. Use this tool to differentiate in all primary classes. Although this site was created for English Language Learners, it could still be used by all students including gifted and learning support. Differentiate for your advanced/gifted students in elementary, while meeting Common Core standards of Informational Text. Use these news articles as informational text meeting your Common Core goals. Assign students of different levels the same story at the appropriate level or build skills by sharing the same story as a class. Challenge groups to compare the stories in pairs. Have students create a visual presentation of the story. First have students create a rough draft of their comic using Printable Comic Strip Templates, reviewed here. For Level 1 readers have them create their final comic using Comic Creator, reviewed here, for Level 3 readers use Write Comics, reviewed here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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TeachersFirst's BYOD Dream Tools: Free Tools that Work on ANY device! - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
4 Favorites 0  Comments
This collection of reviewed tools from TeachersFirst includes apps that are available for FREE on iOS (iPad, iPhone), Android, and web devices. Ideal for BYOD classrooms or 1:1 computer/tablet...more
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This collection of reviewed tools from TeachersFirst includes apps that are available for FREE on iOS (iPad, iPhone), Android, and web devices. Ideal for BYOD classrooms or 1:1 computer/tablet programs, these reviewed tools allow users to create and access projects using the same app, no matter what kind of device they have.

tag(s): classroom management (147), DAT device agnostic tool (167)

In the Classroom

Mark this page in your Favorites to use when choosing or recommending tools for your students (or their parents). Be sure to read the "Edge Features" list at the end of each review to know whether you need to create individual accounts, how products can be shared, and other tips on using these DATs safely and within school policies. This is a must-have list for students collaborating on projects using different types of devices! If you teach gifted students working on advanced projects or have students all working on different projects all at the same time, use this collection of tools as a trusted starting point for students to create their products on any device they may bring to class (or work on from home).

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TeachersFirst's Resources for the Sochi Olympics - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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Find resources to help you learn more about the Sochi Olympics, 2014. Explore the curriculum-related projects and classroom activities centered around the Olympic winter games in Sochi....more
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Find resources to help you learn more about the Sochi Olympics, 2014. Explore the curriculum-related projects and classroom activities centered around the Olympic winter games in Sochi.

tag(s): olympics (48)

In the Classroom

Use these resources to plan a special lesson or unit within your curriculum during the Olympics. Share articles for practice with informational text. Include the Olympics in study of world cultures, lessons on health and fitness, or discussions about personal goal setting and persistence. Share the link on your class web page for students to access both in and out of class for enrichment or individual projects.

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Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics - Organizing Committee of the XXII Olympic Winter Games

Grades
3 to 12
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Welcome to the official home of the 2014 Olympic Winter and Paralympic Games. Explore the site to learn about Olympic events, the culture of Sochi, and view schedules for all ...more
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Welcome to the official home of the 2014 Olympic Winter and Paralympic Games. Explore the site to learn about Olympic events, the culture of Sochi, and view schedules for all events. Choose the mascots link to learn more about the Olympic mascots and their place within the Olympic games. Some portions of the site may appear in Russian, choose the link at the top of the page to view in English.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): olympics (48), sports (97)

In the Classroom

Bookmark this site to use as a resource during the Olympic games to find information on scheduled events and venues. Share the Paralympics portion of the site as part of your unit on disabilities. Have students create timelines of the Olympic Games (with music, photos, videos, and more) using Capzles (reviewed here). Have students use facts from this site to make Bingo cards, or board games for small groups to enjoy. Use this site as an anticipatory set or "activator" to introduce a unit or lesson on values on a projector or interactive whiteboard. Ask your students to visit the site and create a multimedia presentation about teamwork. Have students make a mash-up using one of the many TeachersFirst Edge Tools reviewed here. Have students use Fakebook (reviewed here) to create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook about any of the Olympic athletes past or present.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Pinstamatic - Pinstamatic.com

Grades
K to 12
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Love to use Pinterest but wish you could pin text, links, and other non-image items? Enter Pinstamatic. This site can...more
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Love to use Pinterest but wish you could pin text, links, and other non-image items? Enter Pinstamatic. This site can jazz up more than images. Add quotes, links, and more with this simple tool. It is also helpful for the graphically challenged. Be sure you are logged into Pinterest, and then go to Pinstamatic. Choose from Sticky, Spotify, Quote, Twitter, Calendar, or Location. Enter text, URL, or other information and click preview. When you like the way it looks, click Pin.

tag(s): bookmarks (60)

In the Classroom

Expand classroom use of Pinterest to include Twitter items, quotes, and more. Make pinboards for different subjects or units where you collect videos, images, classroom blogs and websites, etc. In lower grades, pinboard make links more accessible for non-readers. Share your pinboards with students and parents by putting the link on your class website. Create pinboards highlighting topics being studied in class for use as study guides. Challenge your older students to curate their own pinboards as a research project. Use Pinterest to show their hobbies/passions, wise quotes, healthy recipes, art/lyrics, or travel Itinerary. Need your students to register for email to use Pinterest? Read tips for safely managing email registrations here.

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Infinite Oz - Syfy and Verizon Wireless

Grades
6 to 12
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This is an extraordinary piece of digital art that consists of zooming dreamscapes. Get lost in this never ending series of landscapes. As the interactive zooms in, aspects of it ...more
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This is an extraordinary piece of digital art that consists of zooming dreamscapes. Get lost in this never ending series of landscapes. As the interactive zooms in, aspects of it come into sharper focus. Use the slider to make it move faster or slower (even in reverse!) Use the dial on the upper left side to control your options.

tag(s): images (274)

In the Classroom

Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Use this to inspire other digital art work or as a creative writing prompt. In English class, talk about the motifs that are common in fantasy/science fiction and how to describe them using words instead of visuals. In art class, look for styles of drawing, line, color, and other design elements that "mean" fantasy to viewers. Allow students the opportunity to focus on an aspect or aspects of the visuals to inspire their writing. Turn off the sound and imagine the narrative, sounds, or music to accompany the images. Inspire poetry visually. Challenge artists to make a zoomable image of their own and "zoom" into it as they record a screencast accompanied by their own narration or music. Try Screencast-o-matic, reviewed here, to record the zooming narrative.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Medium - Ev Williams

Grades
10 to 12
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Medium is a site for sharing personal writing and stories. The focus is on the actual writing, rather than the extras like images, widgets, and other website clutter. You can ...more
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Medium is a site for sharing personal writing and stories. The focus is on the actual writing, rather than the extras like images, widgets, and other website clutter. You can use images to illustrate your point; however, the focus remains on the words. Upload your writing, and then link with other similar ideas to become more collaborative. One unique feature is the "get help before you publish" button. This allows others to engage and offer suggestions before publishing your work. If using the site for reading, options include following writers and finding articles with similar content through the use of tags. At the time of this review, a Twitter account is required to sign up for a Medium account. This tool is intended as a community for sharing among serious authors, not as a "school tool," so adult supervision is recommended. Not all topics are appropriate for the classroom. So be sure to PREVIEW.

tag(s): creative writing (168), independent reading (130), persuasive writing (55), writers workshop (32)

In the Classroom

Medium is similar to an ever changing and updating magazine. Talk about the etiquette of interacting as authentic writers, not "just a student." Use Medium to find and share interesting pieces of writing with students for independent reading or class discussions. Each article shows a suggested reading time, making it easy to choose a length that is appropriate for your needs. Have students create and share their writing using Medium as a resource for finding a broader reading audience. Have students locate and read articles of interest on Medium and write and post a response of their own. Common Core requires teens (grades 10-12) to write, respond, and revise based on input from a digital audience, and Medium could be an ideal tool for such interaction. If you are new to Twitter or looking for more ways to use Twitter in the classroom? Read more about Twitter at TeachersFirst's Twitter for Teachers page.

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Word Sense - codeLily LLC

Grades
6 to 12
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Word Sense is a dictionary and thesaurus presented in a unique, interactive display. Enter your word in the search box and view the definition. Click on any of the related ...more
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Word Sense is a dictionary and thesaurus presented in a unique, interactive display. Enter your word in the search box and view the definition. Click on any of the related terms to view definitions and connections from the associated words. Use links to go directly to the definition of any associated word or term to continue exploring and understanding terms. There is a link to "Learn How it Works" to learn more about the possibilities at this site. We strongly recommend that you explore how it works first! Note: This is a full service dictionary, so ANY word is available for search, including those not appropriate at school. Use caution with less mature students searching independently. Be certain to set clear expectations and consequences for inappropriate searches.

tag(s): antonyms (26), dictionaries (57), synonyms (38), thesaurus (24), vocabulary (325), vocabulary development (125)

In the Classroom

Have students create a word cloud of the important terms they learn from this site. Explore word meanings, connotations, and antonyms. Use a word cloud maker to create clouds of new words learned: Wordle (reviewed here), Tagxedo (reviewed here), or WordItOut (reviewed here). Use Word Sense to understand and explore vocabulary words of the day or week. Share with students as a resource for preparing for standardized testing, such as the SAT/ACT.

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Text Compactor - Knowledge by Design Inc.

Grades
7 to 12
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This simple, free tool can shorten or summarize an otherwise long passage or text. Simply copy and paste the text passage into the text box. Specify the percentage of summarization...more
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This simple, free tool can shorten or summarize an otherwise long passage or text. Simply copy and paste the text passage into the text box. Specify the percentage of summarization (there is a slider you can drag to the percentage that you want). Text Compactor produces a shortened version below the original. Summarization of text is now easy and fast. Be sure to mention to any student using this site the importance of not plagiarizing and using only original writing. To learn more about how the tool works (and possibly consider some of its "short" comings), see "About."

tag(s): creative writing (168), descriptive writing (42), expository writing (45), paragraph writing (17), process writing (45)

In the Classroom

Use this resource when reducing original passages (not plagiarized) to fit a specific number of words or characters. Use this resource when teaching summarization. Paste in a text to summarize and discuss/brainstorm what makes a great summary. Challenge students to look for ways that the tool may have actually missed an important concept through its automated process. Have the class decide whether their own summary or the one offered by this tool is best -- and why. Use this tool as one of many angles on revision during the writing process. Have students paste in their own writing to see what ideas "show" as the most important and to consider revising to emphasize what they really intended to say. If your emails get a bit too wordy, try this tool to shorten them! Shorten your assignment descriptions to make them easier for your ESL/ELL students and lower level readers to understand.

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English With Jennifer - Jennifer Lebedev

Grades
2 to 8
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This Youtube channel is designed for English Language Learners. Find a variety of subjects: beginning and advanced English, pronunciation, various grammar points, vocabulary, writing,...more
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This Youtube channel is designed for English Language Learners. Find a variety of subjects: beginning and advanced English, pronunciation, various grammar points, vocabulary, writing, punctuation, slang, language notes, and more. You can proceed through a series chronologically and build from one lesson into the next. You can also view individual lessons. This collection, started in 2007, continues to grow steadily and offer a great variety. The explanations on the videos are clear and easy to understand. Teachers and parents can subscribe to receive more offerings and assistance as well as updates. 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): grammar (213), video (269), vocabulary development (125), writing (363)

In the Classroom

Visit Jennifer's Blog to find ideas about how to use these lessons in the classroom and to find additional support. Jennifer frequently updates the offerings. Share these videos on your interactive whiteboard or projector. FLIP your classroom and have students view the videos at home and discuss the next day in class. (This is a great option if YouTube is blocked in your school.) Use the videos to introduce a grammar or punctuation point you would like to make, and assign others in the series for homework. Look at the "Word of the Day" each morning when you begin your ESL/ELL lesson. Use the slang offerings in a similar manner. Be sure to provide this link on your class website for students (and their families) to access at home for additional English practice.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Educore Tools for Teaching the Common Core - ASCD

Grades
7 to 12
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Ready, set, Common Core! Do you need middle and high school resources for your journey into Common Core? Find current, relevant, evidence based tools and professional development in...more
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Ready, set, Common Core! Do you need middle and high school resources for your journey into Common Core? Find current, relevant, evidence based tools and professional development in three specific areas: About the Common Core, Literacy Tools, and Math Tools. With your free account, find resources and bookmark them to your favorites. A free journaling tool allows you to add relevant notes. This site features the work of the Literacy Design Collaborative, LDC, using the structure of effective and meaningful literacy across the subject areas. Examples are also provided for science and social studies. Various lessons and student handouts are included. LDC is examined in the use of Common Core. Math activities include grades 7-12 and feature concept development, formative assessments, and lessons in action.

tag(s): commoncore (96)

In the Classroom

Find the resources that are right for you, and begin to implement and dig deeper into Common Core. Discover recommended best practices and find practical tools to begin using today. From professional development to ready to use lessons, keep yourself current and stretch your students to go further. Be sure to bookmark this site (or save it in your favorites).
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Online-Convert - online-convert.com

Grades
K to 12
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Online-Convert is your one stop shop for converting media files from one format to another. It is similar to Zamzar (reviewed here), with one advantage....more
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Online-Convert is your one stop shop for converting media files from one format to another. It is similar to Zamzar (reviewed here), with one advantage. There is no email requirement for converting files. Choose your converter to begin: Audio, Video, Ebook, Image, Document, Archive, or Hash. Use the drop box to choose the target format for your file. Upload or add the url for conversion. Also choose from options such as image quality, size, color, and enhancements. Click convert file, then wait for completion. Online-Convert stores your file for 24 hours and up to 10 downloads.
This site includes advertising.

In the Classroom

Mark this tool in your favorites (or bookmark) for easy access and professional use, no matter what grade you teach. Model ethical use of electronic resources (other people's work) for students. Making a "derivative work" from someone else's pdf handout should include a printed credit within the new document, giving credit for the original source, Ex. "Adapted from a handout by xxx available at www.theoriginalhandout.pdf." Such derivative use should only be done when the original copyright permits it, such as using materials that grant permission for classroom use. Be sure to give proper credit for videos and other files you save locally. Have students practice giving proper credit to their converted files.
 

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DropShots - WebMinds, Inc

Grades
K to 12
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DropShots is a free video/photo storage and sharing host. Create your membership using email or your Google or Facebook account. Drag and drop files from your computer to upload. Videos...more
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DropShots is a free video/photo storage and sharing host. Create your membership using email or your Google or Facebook account. Drag and drop files from your computer to upload. Videos and images are automatically sorted by date taken. Add a password so that only those who know your unique url and the password can view and access your page. Use links to easily share with social networking sites or embed onto any website. The free (basic) plan allows for up to 500 photos, 20 videos (each with a 2-minute video limit), password protection, and NO ads!
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): images (274), video (269)

In the Classroom

Create a classroom DropShots account for students to upload video projects or images for projects. Share raw materials for student multimedia projects, such as photos of lab experiments or local historic sites. Share classroom projects privately and easily from your DropShots account. In elementary classrooms, teacher can use this tool to share photos from field trips, assemblies, project presentations, and other special events. Share the password with parents only. Have older students create their own DropShots account for collaborating on multimedia projects. Consider having your students sign up using a Gmail account. Read tips for safely managing email registrations here.

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Cat At Bat - Random House

Grades
K to 3
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Practice basic phonics and rhymes with this baseball-themed game. Click on a ball that rhymes with the word on the scoreboard. If it is a rhyme, you score a home ...more
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Practice basic phonics and rhymes with this baseball-themed game. Click on a ball that rhymes with the word on the scoreboard. If it is a rhyme, you score a home run. If you do not swing because it is not a rhyme, it counts as a ball. This is a clever way to combine baseball with the idea of rhyming. This site works not only for finding rhymes but also for helping beginning readers to read sight words quickly. When students complete one game, the other team is up to bat.

tag(s): baseball (36), phonics (72), rhymes (32)

In the Classroom

Bookmark this site on your classroom computers or save it in your favorites. Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Put students in pairs at the computers, each representing one of the teams. Also put a link to this interactive on your class web page so students can play at home.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Story Town - Harcourt School Publishers

Grades
K to 5
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Story Town offers a writing and reading resources for language arts teachers and students. Main topics include: About Authors and Illustrators, Grammar Glossary, Ideas for Writers,...more
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Story Town offers a writing and reading resources for language arts teachers and students. Main topics include: About Authors and Illustrators, Grammar Glossary, Ideas for Writers, Lesson Vocabulary, and Language Support Posters. There are also links to parent resources, teacher resources, online assessments, and more. The Parent Resources include Internet safety, helping your child become a good reader (and writer), ideas on helping your child to become a better test taker, and more. Teacher resources include language support posters, word wall ideas, author celebrations, letter home ideas, and additional support lessons. This site is extremely useful whether or not your school (or student) uses Harcourt. There is something useful for all elementary students.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): authors (121), creative writing (168), expository writing (45), grammar (213), internet safety (105), word study (79)

In the Classroom

Story Town can add new life to your language arts classes. Find examples to share on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Share both grammar lessons and writing ideas. Bookmark this site as a reference for struggling learners or ESL/ELL students. Be sure parents have this site as a resource for suggestions to help their children with reading, writing, and test taking strategies.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Sail the Book - Sail the Book

Grades
8 to 12
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Sail the Book does what we all wish we had time to do: it pulls together works of literature--all of which are focused on maritime themes--and uses Google Earth technology ...more
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Sail the Book does what we all wish we had time to do: it pulls together works of literature--all of which are focused on maritime themes--and uses Google Earth technology to bring them to life. With so many online resources out there, it's great to encounter a truly well-integrated interdisciplinary site that draws on the strength of 21st century technology to transform classic literature. Each of six books, including Darwin's Voyage of the Beagle, is presented in full text form, chapter by chapter. Each chapter is accompanied by a "tour" linked to Google Earth, and here is where the fun begins! The tours include a number of Points of Interest that open in Google Earth as well as questions and activities that link to passages within the text. Taken as a whole, this is an interdisciplinary approach at its best, combining geography, history, science, art and literature into one tidy package. If you aren't sure where to get started, visit the Video Tutorials to learn more! The video clips 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): literature (275), marine biology (33), oceans (152)

In the Classroom

Developed by a teacher, Sail the Book is exactly what all good teachers wish they had time to do: create imaginative, integrated units that take advantage of today's technology. Sail the Book could be used in conjunction with a regular classroom study of one of the works of literature included. However, a reasonably self-directed student could undertake an independent reading of any of the books, using Sail the Book to gain further insight. Alternatively, the "tours" might help struggling readers or non-native readers get the most out of these works, helping the words come to life through more visual terms. The site seems uniquely suited to a multi-disciplinary setting like a gifted enrichment class, where students are free to pull from a variety of curricula--science, literature, geography, and history--to add value and rigor to the traditional classroom. The site is easily adaptable. Use one chapter. Use one full book. Do the tours with the activities or without the activities. And once your students have done a tour, ask them how THEY might construct a tour of their own related to some other work of literature they love. Creating their own could be an ideal unit for a gifted classroom or for gifted students going above and beyond the "regular" unit.

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