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Scrible - Scrible

Grades
8 to 12
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Scrible is an annotation tool that allows you to identify content on any web page. Add notes and tags, and then bookmark the notes into a research collection. Download the ...more
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Scrible is an annotation tool that allows you to identify content on any web page. Add notes and tags, and then bookmark the notes into a research collection. Download the Scrible bookmarklet to your toolbar to begin. Use multiple colors to highlight, underline, or strike through web page content. Add sticky notes to any web page to include your own comments and categorize annotations using type and color to organize saved content. Share annotations via email easily using the share function. You can also save it to your own library available in "the cloud" from anywhere. Free accounts offer 125 mb storage or 250 mb for student accounts. Student accounts also include features to capture citations, create bibliographies, and compile notes from multiple articles into one report. Note: student accounts require a school-issued email address (edu or k12 type).
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tag(s): bookmarks (60), citations (34), note taking (32)

In the Classroom

There are so many applications and possibilities for this site! Use prompts on articles to build Common Core skills analyzing informational texts. How many times have we heard students complain during a group project, "But I couldn't get to his or her house to work on it?" Tell them to use Scrible to interact online. The research and conversations created through highlighting and annotating what they read can greatly enhance both their research skills and their online interaction on academic level skills. Or use the site to post and share discussion assignments on specific articles or even parts of articles using the highlighting tool. Find a relevant article to your subject. Highlight the part that you want students to read. (If students are younger, keep it short to reduce the intimidating reality of too much information for kids.) Attach a note with a discussion question for the students. Have them comment on the link in a "class discussion" as an outside assignment. If you are fortunate enough to have all students with computer access in your class and at home, such as in one to one laptop (or byod) program schools, you can use this essentially to run your class. Post assignments or post readings. Science teachers can post online interactive labs, and more.

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Spelling Bees - Arcademics

Grades
2 to 4
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Spelling Bees allows up to four players to practice spelling by building a beehive with correctly spelled words. Begin by using the site-generated user name or typing your own; ...more
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Spelling Bees allows up to four players to practice spelling by building a beehive with correctly spelled words. Begin by using the site-generated user name or typing your own; then join a game or create your own. Use private game settings to create a private game with a password so only known users will join. When a game is full, play begins. Listen to each word and click or type letters to spell the word. After spelling the word correctly, the game continues until time runs out. At the end of the game, view your position in the finished game along with percentage correct and correct spelling for any missed words.

tag(s): spelling (168)

In the Classroom

Use Spelling Bee as an entertaining way to practice spelling on your interactive whiteboard or classroom computers. This site could be used with all levels and types of students: ESL/ELL, gifted, learning support, and others. Any student needing to practice spelling skills can benefit from this site. Allow students to create private games and compete against friends. Challenge students to increase the number of words spelled and improve accuracy. Unfortunately, you cannot enter your own word lists.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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News Action - News Action

Grades
4 to 12
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NewsAction shares student-created news stories from around the world. Scroll down the page to view recent stories or browse to recent or popular stories and videos. Have your own story...more
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NewsAction shares student-created news stories from around the world. Scroll down the page to view recent stories or browse to recent or popular stories and videos. Have your own story to add? Sign up (requires email), choose your region, and scroll down to find your dashboard. Create posts and polls and upload images or video using the Word Press software. Since this is student-created, you may want to preview before you share with your class.

tag(s): blogs (88), digital storytelling (144), journalism (46), news (261)

In the Classroom

View articles posted on the site together on your interactive whiteboard or projector to use as discussion starters or to view examples of student writing. These are student written informational texts perfect for close reading or for instruction about writing skills. Have students create their own articles to share on your class website. Have students create blogs using Throwww (reviewed here). This site allows you to create "quick and easy" blogs to be used one time only. There is no registration necessary! Create a class account on NewsAction to post stories, videos, and images from your classroom. If your school policies permit, you may want students over 13 to each create their own accounts.

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The Faculty Project - FacultyProject.org

Grades
9 to 12
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Take free online courses offered by outstanding professors from prestigious schools like Dartmouth, Vassar, Duke, and Northwestern. Choose from dozens of courses and lectures covering...more
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Take free online courses offered by outstanding professors from prestigious schools like Dartmouth, Vassar, Duke, and Northwestern. Choose from dozens of courses and lectures covering a broad spectrum of topics. Learn through video, PDF, PowerPoint, discussion boards, and educational articles. Scroll down the site to view course titles and click enroll to begin.

tag(s): china (66), constitution (79), greece (26), greek (41), poetry (228), religions (61), russia (38), sports (97), water (130)

In the Classroom

Allow gifted or advanced students to enroll in courses that interest them or that provide enrichment beyond classroom content. Share this program with others in your building as a resource for professional development. Explore the topics yourself for some new, engaging topics to round out your own expertise. Allow students to enroll in a course that would fit into their career goals as an exploratory opportunity in that field.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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TeachersFirst Featured Sites: Embeddable widgets - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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Share TeachersFirst's weekly Features SItes automatically on your teacher blog or school web page. If you can copy/paste and use embed codes, you can choose from two formats to show...more
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Share TeachersFirst's weekly Features SItes automatically on your teacher blog or school web page. If you can copy/paste and use embed codes, you can choose from two formats to show the current Featured Sites on your teacher blog, ed tech coaching page, or resource page for preservice teachers. The widget automatically updates your page with new content every week. Note that use of these widgets is limited to educators and is not allowed on fee-based or commercial sites. Once you place the widget on your page, it automatically updates with the new sites each week -- with no work by you! Share the reviewed resources you trust with your colleagues, parents, and students. Thinking Teachers Teaching Thinkers!

tag(s): professional development (123), resources (112)

In the Classroom

If you know how to use embed codes, use this widget to offer trusted, weekly new content on your web page. If you do not know how to embed, ask one of your tech-savvy students or colleagues. It isn't hard at all! Be sure to tell you edtech coach or instructional technology specialist and library/media specialist about this great, free service.
 

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OK2Ask'®: Writing with the Web August 2013 - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional development session from August 2013, opens in Adobe Connect. Writing with the Web: Tips and ideas for all levels. Writing is an important...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional development session from August 2013, opens in Adobe Connect. Writing with the Web: Tips and ideas for all levels. Writing is an important and powerful way to build and assess student understanding. As a result of this session and through individual follow-up, teachers will: Explore a sampling of web-based writing tools and resources, including writing prompts, word choice/vocabulary resources, common error help, tools for citations and research, writing templates, and more; Refer to Common Core or your own school's writing standards to guide in selection of appropriate resources; Locate specific TeachersFirst writing resources appropriate for the his/her subject and grade level; Investigate and discuss writing lesson ideas offered in the reviews and by other teachers in this online session; Explore web-based tools and resources for collaborating during the writing process and/or sharing/publishing student writing; List possible curriculum-related writing projects or activities that students could do in his/her classes using web-based resources; and (followup) Implement writing lesson(s) with students using web-based tools for at least one phase of the writing process. Applicable NETS-T standards (2008)*: 1c, 2a, c; 3a, b, d. * The text of these standards is copyrighted. Please read the full text at ISTE's NETS-T page.

In the Classroom

View this archived webinar to learn some new ideas for writing class. Take a look at the resource page full of wonderful writing ideas! Learn more about OK2Ask and upcoming sessions here.
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Kids Are Heroes - Kids Are Heroes, Inc

Grades
K to 6
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Kids Are Heroes showcases kids who are making a difference through volunteerism and giving. Read stories about each of these kids at the Lily's Heroes links. Scroll through or search...more
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Kids Are Heroes showcases kids who are making a difference through volunteerism and giving. Read stories about each of these kids at the Lily's Heroes links. Scroll through or search for kids from specific countries or states. Read about how they are helping people, animals, or the planet. Nominate a student as one of Lily's heroes.

tag(s): guided reading (47), heroes (24), service projects (25)

In the Classroom

Share stories from Kids Are Heroes with your students as examples of how kids can make a difference. Print and use stories for guided reading instruction. Use stories as a model and have students write about their own heroic activities. Plan a whole-class or whole-school service project. Have students create an annotated image including text boxes and related links using a tool such as Photocat, reviewed here to tell their story.

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40 Maps That Explain the World - The Washington Post

Grades
5 to 12
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The Washington Post offers this interesting variety of maps illustrating many different viewpoints and realities around the world. Topics include best and worst place to be born, child...more
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The Washington Post offers this interesting variety of maps illustrating many different viewpoints and realities around the world. Topics include best and worst place to be born, child poverty in the developed world, and the world seen from space over a 12 month time-lapse. Click to enlarge any of the maps. Several include links for further information.
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tag(s): agriculture (55), cross cultural understanding (115), cultures (105), ecology (135), inferencing (5), maps (287), religions (61)

In the Classroom

Bookmark and save this site for use with many social studies, reading, and higher level thinking topics. Use them to teach about interpreting graphical information in texts. Display on your interactive whiteboard and explore with your students. Use these maps to ask deep questions about meaning in maps. What inferences/conclusions can you draw based on this map? These maps are a perfect starting point for research projects on many subjects. Have students brainstorm questions they wonder about or collect ideas for possible projects on a collaborative bulletin board like Scrumblr, reviewed here (quick start- no membership required!).
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Twiddla - twiddla.com

Grades
3 to 12
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Twiddla is an online meeting space and collaboration tool that is like having a whiteboard skin placed over any website or image so you can draw and more. Discover options ...more
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Twiddla is an online meeting space and collaboration tool that is like having a whiteboard skin placed over any website or image so you can draw and more. Discover options available in the practice area named the Sandbox. Choose options for collaboration such as a url, uploaded image or document, or collaborate together on a blank screen. Use the Invite button to share the collaboration url via email or copy/paste. Take a snapshot of your session at any time and export as an image. Pro Accounts offer additional features, such as screen captures and password protection. Receive these services free as an educator, find the directions in the FAQ.
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tag(s): design (84), editing (61), iwb (31), note taking (32)

In the Classroom

Use Twiddla to explore and save information from any website. Display any website on your interactive whiteboard using Twiddla. Add text, highlight information, and mark up the site as you wish. Take a screenshot and add to your classroom webpage for students to view at home for review. Have a flipped classroom? Create a lesson from any image, document, or website using Twiddla then share the image for student use. Art teachers can have students annotate a web-based image to emphasize design elements. Teach notetaking by having students mark up important ideas on a web page (perhaps evidence found in informational texts?) Hold an online conference with students about their web-based projects using Twiddla. Use Twiddla with your bring your own device (byod) classroom or in the computer lab to highlight and share information from documents, images, and websites.

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ipadio - Andy Ayers, Mark Smith, and Giles Bryan

Grades
4 to 12
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Broadcast live to the Internet from any phone to create a phlog (live voice-blog) using ipadio. Register on the site with the phone number desired. Then call one of the ...more
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Broadcast live to the Internet from any phone to create a phlog (live voice-blog) using ipadio. Register on the site with the phone number desired. Then call one of the local numbers provided by ipadio. After the welcome message, enter your pin number and start recording for up to 60 minutes. Disconnect using the # button on your phone, and your phlog is complete! Once complete, login to your ipadio account to view the broadcast and find the embed code for sharing on your website. Ipadio has both iOS and Android apps, both free at the time of this review.

tag(s): blogs (88), podcasts (52)

In the Classroom

One interesting option available with ipadio is the ability for other users to call in with your account. Have students call in with answers to homework using your channel. View how to do this at the help section located in ipadio. If you already do podcasts, use ipadio in a similar manner to share course content or describe step by step procedures for math problems, etc. Create a weekly phlog to embed in your class websites with a summary of the week's activities. Do this during class and allow students to add to the summary. Have BYOD? Create a class phlog and assign rotating student groups to make audio summaries/review podcasts of class content. Invite them to be creative by developing characters and their own creative podcast format. Library/media specialists can invite students to create ipadio book reviews. World language teachers can assign students to create ipadio podcasts of dialogs or cultural topics to build spoken language skills.

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Making the Common Core Come Alive! - Just Ask Publications

Grades
K to 12
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Making the Common Core Come Alive provides many resources for implementing and teaching Common Core Standards. Scroll through this page to find templates for designing units, a self...more
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Making the Common Core Come Alive provides many resources for implementing and teaching Common Core Standards. Scroll through this page to find templates for designing units, a self inventory of understanding of the standards, curriculum templates, and much more. Download one of several units such as 1st Grade persuasive writing, middle school force and motion, or high school comparing and contrasting plant and animal cells. Each resource includes a short description along with a link to a PDF or Word document for your use.
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tag(s): africa (180), cells (102), commoncore (94), decimals (133), forces (45), fractions (239), organisms (21), percent (82), persuasive writing (55), professional development (123)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of the free resources including the templates for developing Common Core lessons. Share this site during professional development sessions. Use the templates for lesson and unit planning.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Diamante Poems - ReadWriteThink

Grades
2 to 8
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Diamonds are forever and so are diamante poems created on this free site. This is a great tool to shape up your poets through the structure of a 7 lined ...more
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Diamonds are forever and so are diamante poems created on this free site. This is a great tool to shape up your poets through the structure of a 7 lined diamante poem. Learn about the diamond-shaped poems that use specific types of words for each line. Rhyming isn't needed, but needn't be impeded. Describe a central topic or two opposing topics like night and day. View the examples before creating your poem. Each screen provides an organizer for any poet to complete. Click on the parts of speech for definitions while composing poems. Edit your poem, if needed, before printing, downloading it as a PDF, or sharing through email. Save your draft to continue at a later date. This site is a must during poetry month in April.

tag(s): antonyms (26), parts of speech (68), poetry (228), rhymes (33), synonyms (38)

In the Classroom

Diamante poems are a fun format to write about a single topic or to compare/contrast two topics. Review parts of speech and then apply these concepts with writing diamante poems. Work the idea of cause and effect into the diamante poem format for a challenging activity with your poets. Provide students with diamante poems with a few words missing and have them fill in the blanks to complete the poem. Compare or contrast text passages for any subject area or use the diamante format to summarize a selection. Provide your students with images, and have them write diamante poems about the images. Make homemade greeting cards with your students to give using this format of poetry or write "about me" poems using this tool at the start of school.
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PreKinders - Karen Cox

Grades
K to 1
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PreKinders offers printables and teaching ideas for pre-kindergarten and kindergarten teachers. Explore the learning areas to find quick and easy activities for literacy, math, and...more
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PreKinders offers printables and teaching ideas for pre-kindergarten and kindergarten teachers. Explore the learning areas to find quick and easy activities for literacy, math, and more. Choose from themes such as fairy tales and families. Search through the many printables in all subject areas as well as classroom management checklists, assessments, and posters.
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tag(s): alphabet (92), alphabetical order (19), back to school (58), classroom management (135), colors (79), counting (120), magnetism (36), musical instruments (48), numbers (204), nursery rhymes (18), preK (281), songs (52), sounds (68), weather (188)

In the Classroom

Bookmark this site to use throughout the year. Use the printables and images from this site for your bulletin boards. Take advantage of the free lesson plans offered. Check out the holiday and back to school activities for use in the classroom.
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Innovative Classroom - Innovative Classroom

Grades
K to 5
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Find "ready to use" lessons, thematic units, classroom management ideas, and much more at this one-stop resource for elementary teachers. Explore the reproducibles section to find templates...more
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Find "ready to use" lessons, thematic units, classroom management ideas, and much more at this one-stop resource for elementary teachers. Explore the reproducibles section to find templates for science observation, an excellent Problems with Dice activity, and an Internet usage survey. After choosing a reproducible, be sure to look on the right side of the page for other reproducibles not listed on the main page. The Innovative Classroom also contains an extensive list of center activity ideas, class certificates, and bulletin board suggestions. Be prepared to spend a lot of time here finding and saving ideas!
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tag(s): bulletin boards (16), classroom management (135), counting (120), density (21), fractions (239), gettysburg address (18), heat (15), holidays (147), human body (121), map skills (79), martin luther king (37), olympics (47), painting (66), place value (56)

In the Classroom

Bookmark this site for use throughout the year. Explore the center activities to use in your classroom. Search lessons for ideas to incorporate. Print behavior and classroom management ideas for use with students.
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Metta - Dragontape Ltd

Grades
5 to 12
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Metta is a multimedia presentation tool that allows you to combine videos, pictures, and text to create short movies. Create an account using your email address or Facebook to begin....more
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Metta is a multimedia presentation tool that allows you to combine videos, pictures, and text to create short movies. Create an account using your email address or Facebook to begin. Start with a title, choose to build a story from scratch or an RSS feed, and click create. Follow prompts to drag images from your computer or insert video URLs. Add new chapters (slides) and reorder as desired. Trim video clips using the tools provided with the editor. Add text or record audio using your computer's microphone in any chapter. Save and publish when finished. Share using the URL provided or embed code.

tag(s): images (266), multimedia (57), video (254)

In the Classroom

Use to create educational videos and projects to introduce and interest students in a topic. Use to generate questions prior to the discussion of topics. Create a multi-image slideshow where students brainstorm how the images are all connected. Have students create projects for class using Metta. Be sure to include this tool on your blog, wiki, or public page for easy student access. You may want to consider allowing your older students to create their own accounts, depending on school policies. Read tips for safely managing email registrations here. Upload pictures and videos once a month to share through your classroom website or blog, or allow a group of students to create each month's review. Create a project site for students to upload images and videos found when studying any subject. Upload images with squares, triangles, rectangles, etc. when learning about shapes. Upload pictures of plants for a science unit, etc. Have students upload family pictures when learning about families. World language students can create digital photo stories to narrate using new vocabulary. Present teacher professional development or an end of year display for the school media center. Have other staff members upload images and videos from the year of school activities.

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Sketchlot - sketchlot.com

Grades
K to 12
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Create a sketch on a virtual whiteboard, share it, and have recipients mark it up and share it back. This tool describes itself as a "web whiteboard for schools." Click ...more
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Create a sketch on a virtual whiteboard, share it, and have recipients mark it up and share it back. This tool describes itself as a "web whiteboard for schools." Click Demo to try the tools. Create your own account, and add a list of students. Students log in using your class code and a password. Share finished sketches using the share feature for others to view, sketch, and reply. Embed sketches to your website using code provided or share via Twitter. Sketchlot is a device-agnostic tool, designed to work on all current tablets, phones and computers. Use it from any device or move between several devices and still access your work. App and web versions may vary slightly. Note that the tools in Sketchlot are drawing only: lines, rectangles, and freeform drawing, but no text typing! Anything you can depict as a diagram with free-form writing can be a Sketchlot. (It may be easier to draw on a tablet than on a computer.) Make it easer to write with your finger by zooming in or out.

tag(s): brainstorming (23), DAT device agnostic tool (199), drawing (78), mind map (25)

In the Classroom

If you are one of the lucky ones with a classroom set of mobile devices, this site is an excellent resource for you! Use Sketchlot to write and share math problems for students to view, complete, then send back to you. Create diagrams for student viewing. Have students label items, then return. Create a simple diagram of a structure and have students label forces acting on that structure. Hand the main page over to a student on your interactive whiteboard during a presentation, then share with the rest of the class to add reviews and additional information. Send differentiated tasks to your gifted students by starting a partially completed diagram (a valley where they need to build a bridge) and having them investigate, complete the diagram, and add details. They can, in turn, pass back challenges for classmates (or you) to solve.

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Smarterer - Dave Balter, Michael Kowalchik, and Jennifer Fremont-Smith

Grades
8 to 12
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Smarterer helps identify what you know about many subjects and helps identify your weaknesses in others. Explore tests by categories such as games, language and writing, or math and...more
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Smarterer helps identify what you know about many subjects and helps identify your weaknesses in others. Explore tests by categories such as games, language and writing, or math and finance to begin. Choose a test and take a practice question which will not count on your score. Take complete tests after signing in using your Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn account. You can also use your email. View scores at the end of each test and your ranking on a scale from beginner to master based on comparisons to other test takers. Create your own tests easily using step by step directions provided on Smarterer. Give your test a title, then add questions and multiple choice responses. Choose to let others add questions to your test or not. Tests will appear on Smarterer after approval from the site moderators. The site continues to add new tests, many user-created.

tag(s): assessment (100), business (58), computers (95), quizzes (97), test prep (96)

In the Classroom

Use Smarterer to help students identify areas to improve in different skills. Use some of the tests for students to "test out" of curriculum such as email etiquette in computer class or to motivate students to learn about real world skills they will need in the job market. Share this site with students to use at home for quick assessments in many subjects. Create your own tests to use for review and share with students to take and identify areas for further study. Demonstrate how students can track progress through retaking tests (students will need their own account).

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Google Keep - Google, Inc.

Grades
4 to 12
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Use Google Keep to save notes directly to your Google Drive account. This tool requires that you have a Google account. Unlike some similar services, such as Evernote,...more
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Use Google Keep to save notes directly to your Google Drive account. This tool requires that you have a Google account. Unlike some similar services, such as Evernote, reviewed here, notes kept in Google Keep are saved to your Google Drive account. Use for notes, voice notes, lists, and photos. Access these on any web enabled mobile device. Keep works best with Chrome browsers and Android phones, but our editors had no issues using other browsers as well. Google Keep can also be also used with any school's Google Apps account. Keep is colorful, which is part of the design. Be sure to use the colors as an organizational tool. Keep has a low learning curve and is very simple to use. The quick note feature is invaluable: just type your notes in the text box without logging in or switching screens. To leave a voice note, tap the microphone icon and speak. Archive items easily when you are done. Though Keep is a more generic, basic tool, its value is in its simplicity and ease of use.

tag(s): note taking (32), organizational skills (122)

In the Classroom

Take pictures of things to do, buy, or finish. Create checklists of steps in a project. Place all of your notes in one place so you do not forget. Use this tool easily in your Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) classroom since all students will be able to access it for free, no matter what device they have. They could "keep" assignment information, reminders, and more. Consider creating a class account that can be used by all students. Spell out the use of the site and what is allowed and not allowed -- and the penalties. Even though all students have the same login, create different notebooks for different tasks that students can use to upload information to be shared by all. Create separate accounts for student groups who can then share their notebook with other groups. Use to snapshot and share links, documents, files, and pictures for any group project or class work. Whole class accounts can be used by a class scribe during class and accessed from home for review, by absentees, etc.

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Bouncy Balls - Neave Interactive

Grades
K to 4
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Captivate and challenge students while maintaining quiet times in your classroom with Bouncy Balls! Turn on the microphone to capture sound; balls bounce whenever there is noise. Although...more
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Captivate and challenge students while maintaining quiet times in your classroom with Bouncy Balls! Turn on the microphone to capture sound; balls bounce whenever there is noise. Although very simple in nature, this site is sure to be useful in many classroom (and other) applications. Unfortunately, this site does not work on mobile devices.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): preK (281), sound (101)

In the Classroom

Use Bouncy Balls during silent reading time, on reentering the classroom after lunch, recess or special classes or anytime you are trying to maintain quiet. Graph the length of time balls lay still; then challenge your class to improve their time each day or reach a set goal. Use with preK students during nap/quiet time as a visual reminder for quiet. Use this during silent reading time in class.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Weird Road Signs - TODAY; Paul A. Eisenstein

Grades
6 to 12
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Take the road less traveled by and check out these 14 wild, weird, and wacky street signs that were finalists for a Today Show contest. You will find humor, irony, ...more
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Take the road less traveled by and check out these 14 wild, weird, and wacky street signs that were finalists for a Today Show contest. You will find humor, irony, and signs that require a law degree to comprehend among the entries. Ignore the advertising on the site; the signs are worth it. Be aware of the content: some may not be suitable for middle school classrooms.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): creative writing (166), figurative language (16)

In the Classroom

These signs can spark writing, geography, and visual communication lessons. Project selected signs on the interactive whiteboard as ideas for students to use for creative writing pieces. Have the students create a fictional scavenger hunt of several signs around the world. Have students use a mapping tool such as Mapskip (reviewed here) to create a map showing the sign locations (with audio stories and pictures about what happened when people encountered the sign)! Use the locations offered in some of the descriptions for geography lessons to integrate geography with writing. Use the images on a bulletin board and have students write captions for the signs. Have student editors find grammatical errors on the signs. Students could create an annotated image including text boxes with captions and related links using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here. Have students upload a sign image and add voice bubbles with narration using a tool such as Superlame, reviewed here. Use the signs for ESL/ELL students to teach about the nuances of text translation.

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