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School Digger - Schooldigger.com

Grades
K to 12
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This site has assembled statistical data about the best and worst schools, public and private, state by state. Besides ranking, the site compares schools by student test scores. It...more
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This site has assembled statistical data about the best and worst schools, public and private, state by state. Besides ranking, the site compares schools by student test scores. It also offers tons of other data about student and teacher make up. The school search feature is invaluable to parents who are contemplating moving their student to a different school, district, or area. Before moving, parents can check the school in the area and even find a list of homes for sale in the district.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): statistics (122)

In the Classroom

Refer visiting parents to this site when they make an initial school visit.

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Kids and Guns - Common Sense

Grades
5 to 12
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This site strives to present facts, news headlines, safety issues, gun information websites, and state by state information about gun safety and the dangers of guns in the home. Although...more
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This site strives to present facts, news headlines, safety issues, gun information websites, and state by state information about gun safety and the dangers of guns in the home. Although the site is definitely pro gun control, the presence of many fact pages and articles by reputable sources provides balance and objectivity.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): safety (92)

In the Classroom

Use this site when students are preparing to debate the controversial topic of guns. Have students work in cooperative learning groups and explore a portion of this site and then complete a multimedia project using one of the many TeachersFirst Edge tools reviewed here.

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Back to School Tips - American Academy of Pediatrics

Grades
K to 8
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Parents of elementary and middle school students will be delighted with this helpful collection of ideas for successfully entering a new school year. Backpack safety, study habits,...more
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Parents of elementary and middle school students will be delighted with this helpful collection of ideas for successfully entering a new school year. Backpack safety, study habits, bullying, television use, and homework and study habits are just a few of the topics discussed.

tag(s): vision (87)

In the Classroom

If you have a summer newsletter, be sure to highlight this website. List this website on your class website during the summer months for parents to view during the break.

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Free Technology Toolkit for UDL in All Classrooms - Karen Janowski

Grades
K to 12
13 Favorites 1  Comments
  
Free Technology Toolkit for UDL in All Classrooms is the reference tool that gives you all the necessary free websites to promote learning for all students. UDL, or Universal Design...more
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Free Technology Toolkit for UDL in All Classrooms is the reference tool that gives you all the necessary free websites to promote learning for all students. UDL, or Universal Design for Learning, is a concept promoting learning for all learners using assistive technology to promote motivated, strategic, flexible, lifelong learners. UDL reduces barriers and offers support and challenge for each individual learner. Create a free account to make your own wiki or to join in another wiki. Some available resources are free text-to-speech, graphic organizers, multimedia and digital storytelling, study skills tools, literacy tools, writing tools, collaborative tools, research tools, math tools, and tools that compensate for handwriting issues.

tag(s): differentiation (47), graphic organizers (43), literacy (103)

In the Classroom

Refer to this site when you have a struggling learner who needs more support or the student who needs a challenge. Dig through these sites to use in your classroom. Go down the list and incorporate two a week. Many are also reviewed in more detail on TeachersFirst, so don't forget to search for our in-depth reviews to learn more. Ask your student technology crew to investigate and find their favorite from a list of three sites. Add to your class website as a reference. Use this site at Back to School Night to help parents jump into educational technology! Add more to the list! This only opens the doors to technology.

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Deborah, LA, Grades: 0 - 12

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TeachersFirst's Internet Safety Resources - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This collection of reviewed resources focuses on Internet safety and its many concerns: protecting your digital footprint, protecting your identity, 'netiquette, email use, and much...more
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This collection of reviewed resources focuses on Internet safety and its many concerns: protecting your digital footprint, protecting your identity, 'netiquette, email use, and much more. Find varying levels of information for different age groups and materials to help parents cooperate in educating their children for digital citizenship and safety.

tag(s): internet safety (109), safety (92)

In the Classroom

Use these resources in toto or select the best ones for YOUR students to continually model rational, safe behavior online. Share the links with parents and among your colleagues so you can promote positive action instead of fear about the Internet. Find specific projects and lesson plans to fit student/curriculum needs from this extensive collection.

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Understanding H1N1, the Swine Flu: TeachersFirst Editors' Choices - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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The potential spread of Swine Flu in schools and among young people is a major concern. TeachersFirst's editors have collected this helpful information for teachers, students, and parents...more
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The potential spread of Swine Flu in schools and among young people is a major concern. TeachersFirst's editors have collected this helpful information for teachers, students, and parents to better understand the virus, how it is spread, and what YOU can do to stay healthy. This collection of resources has been hand-picked for accuracy and for age-appropriateness with students and so we may all participate in healthy prevention of the swine flu.

tag(s): h1n1 (13)

In the Classroom

Share these resources with your colleagues and school parents by emailing the page or sharing the link from your school web page and in your school newsletter.

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TeachersFirst's Summer Sparklers - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This collection of editors' choices from TeachersFirst will spark summer excitement for parents and kids alike. Whether your want to create something, ignite new learning, or hold on...more
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This collection of editors' choices from TeachersFirst will spark summer excitement for parents and kids alike. Whether your want to create something, ignite new learning, or hold on to what you already know, you will savor these safe, reviewer-recommended resources. Be sure to share with your friends, neighbors, and family. Teachers will want to share this page with students departing for summer break. Summer will never be "boring" again!

tag(s): enrichment (13), summer (12)

In the Classroom

Share the link to this special collection via your class web page, newsletter, or email to all your students as they depart for vacation. You will help parents and students alike. Avoid the "summer slide."

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Autism Speaks, Family Services - Autism Speaks Inc.

Grades
K to 12
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Autism Speaks offers many resources for parents and educators. Autism Speaks describes themselves as a "School Community Toolkit" and was designed to provide information to anyone who...more
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Autism Speaks offers many resources for parents and educators. Autism Speaks describes themselves as a "School Community Toolkit" and was designed to provide information to anyone who has or works with autistic children. The site contains downloadable resources and video clips.

tag(s): autism (22), resources (112)

In the Classroom

Teachers, plan professional development using the free videos and resources from the site. Share the web link on your school's webpage for parents to access. In addition, encourage your PTO/PTA to host an Autism Speaks evening for all interested parents. If you are dealing with an autistic child in your own classroom and feel ill-prepared or uncertain of the best strategies to use, the explanations and ideas on this site will definitely help.
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Whichbook.net - Opening the Book Ltd.

Grades
7 to 12
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Whichbook is an intuitive way to find books that match students' interests, topic choices, and other elements and serves as a welcome replacement for the traditional way of...more
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Whichbook is an intuitive way to find books that match students' interests, topic choices, and other elements and serves as a welcome replacement for the traditional way of searching the stacks and card catalogs in the library or browsing in bookstores or on the web. Whichbook starts with the individual reader and what they are looking for. It enables students to input criteria that is not limited to the typical title, author, genre search, but includes characteristics such as funny/sad, easy/demanding, and short/long to find books that they consider to be a "good read." Whichbook finds titles that match your preferences. There are millions of possibilities so if you don't like any of the books offered, change your choices and try again! Public libraries have played a key role in creating the database. It is important to note that all of the books are either fiction or poetry, available in paperback, and published since 1995.

tag(s): independent reading (128)

In the Classroom

Trying to motivate reluctant readers to pick up a book or to require independent reading is not always an easy task. Make the task more glamorous by providing your students the link to Whichbook. Demonstrate the site and invite students to try it on your whiteboard to witness the fun they will have discovering books they want and need. Then, provide a direct link on your class web page or wiki to make it easily available. Technology has built-in appeal; therefore, the idea of using it as a method to choose a book offers an imaginative way for promoting reading. As always, while in the classroom or computer lab, caution should be taken to oversee students' use of the website as it is possible to type in characteristics that may not be appropriate for the grade level. As an extension or book report alternative, challenge students to make their own simple graphics categorizing books they have read using the same system, determining where they would fall on each of the different scales. Have them explain why they would label the book that way. Share the student-made graphics and explanations on your class wiki.
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Digizen.org - Childnet International

Grades
4 to 12
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This site provides information for kids, parents, and educators on the topic of digital citizenship. The site is broken down into three sections and is color coded so you know ...more
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This site provides information for kids, parents, and educators on the topic of digital citizenship. The site is broken down into three sections and is color coded so you know whether the material is for children, parents or teachers. The site contains interactives, lesson plans, movies and activities.

tag(s): bullying (52), cyberbullying (43), internet safety (109), safety (92)

In the Classroom

This site will be a good addition to any internet safety and awareness program. Teachers, counselors and librarians could put this site on the school or class webpage as a resource for parents and students to access. Use a projector or an interactive whiteboard and view the movie "Let's Fight it Together." Afterward have students do one of the activities contained in the downloadable lesson plan. Be sure to check out the "Things to Do" section for additional student activities, like password creation, digital values, and role playing scenarios. Videotape the role plays and have student groups upload them to TeacherTube, reviewed here. Challenge students to create an online poster using CheckThis, reviewed here, about the information they learned from Digizen.
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B4USurf - Business Software Alliance (BSA)

Grades
3 to 12
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B4USurfis a free educational program for grades 3-12 that is designed to raise awareness of copyright laws and reinforce responsible behavior online. This site has safety tips,...more
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B4USurfis a free educational program for grades 3-12 that is designed to raise awareness of copyright laws and reinforce responsible behavior online. This site has safety tips, lesson plans, resources, and interactive activities for helping educators, parents, and youths with cyber-ethics and cyber-safety by having fun on the web while learning to surf safely and responsibly. The information is pertinent for elementary, middle, and high school students, who communicate, work, socialize, and entertain themselves on the internet. Unlike many of the other internet safety sites, the B4USurf educational initiative is dedicated to promoting both a safe and legal digital world by addressing unlawful copyright behavior through educating and guiding students to use computer technology responsibly.

tag(s): copyright (47), internet safety (109), safety (92)

In the Classroom

Use this site for your own background information and to help students make smart choices and learn the rules and responsibilities of using copyrighted work and technology safely. You will find a wide range of materials that may be shared on your interactive whiteboard or projector or adapted to meet the needs of your class, including quizzes, games, and suggested lessons designed to teach the skills and raise awareness for the risks they face online while searching for information, blogging, or engaging in other internet activities. Have students work with a partner and research various facets of this site and then create a multimedia presentation to share their findings. How about having students create a word cloud of terms about cyber-ethics and/or cyber-safety using a tool such as Wordle reviewed here.
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Disability Fact Sheets - San Ramon Valley Unified School District

Grades
K to 12
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Make IEP (Individualized Educational Plan) reading easy with more than 25 separate fact sheets presented for school based disorders. This is a great resource whether you are a school...more
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Make IEP (Individualized Educational Plan) reading easy with more than 25 separate fact sheets presented for school based disorders. This is a great resource whether you are a school psychologist, social worker, speech/language pathologist, special education teacher, classroom teacher, or school administrator. The list is organized alphabetically starting with ADHD-Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and runs the gamut of all kinds of disabilities in the areas of behavior, developmental, emotional, hearing, learning, reading, speech/language, and vision. Each fact sheet provides an easy to understand description of the disorder, numerous identifying characteristics, as well as classroom implications, practical tips for teachers, a glossary of acronyms such as OCD for Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, and additional resources.

tag(s): disabilities (20), speech (92)

In the Classroom

Special education teachers, school psychologists, and the Special Education department will appreciate being able to download these pdfs for handy references that can be shared with parents and teachers. You may want to distribute them as an attachment to the student's IEP in order to make that document more meaningful and understandable. Another valuable way to use this resource is to send the link and description of this site via email to the entire faculty to use as a means to become familiar with the expectations of students with disabilities included in regular education placements and as a checklist as to whether a referral for intervention or full blown multidisciplinary evaluation is warranted.
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Center for Safe and Responsible Internet Use - Center for Safe and Responsible Internet Use

Grades
4 to 12
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This site provides professional resources, articles, and handouts for parents, teachers, counselors and librarians to use to educate themselves and students about cyberbullying. Nancy...more
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This site provides professional resources, articles, and handouts for parents, teachers, counselors and librarians to use to educate themselves and students about cyberbullying. Nancy Willard is the head of the center. She is one of the top U.S. researchers and voices on Internet Safety and teaching about responsible Internet use. There are some materials for sale on this site, but there is plenty that is free.

tag(s): bullying (52), cyberbullying (43), internet safety (109), safety (92)

In the Classroom

Use the handouts and resources as part of a schoolwide anti-cyberbullying campaign. Have a parent information night, and provide them with the Parent Information Handbook that can be found in the "Articles and Reports" section. Send articles home with your weekly newsletter to keep parents informed about the latest information on cyberbullying. Have students create anti-cyberbullying glogs using GlogsterEDU (reviewed here) or traditional paper posters.
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Cyberbullying Research Center - Cyberbullying Research Center

Grades
4 to 12
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This site provides parents and educators with handouts, publications, and videos that can be used to educate students, parents and teachers about cyberbullying. This website is updated...more
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This site provides parents and educators with handouts, publications, and videos that can be used to educate students, parents and teachers about cyberbullying. This website is updated frequently, so check back often as you teach your students about the dangers of cyberbullying.

tag(s): bullying (52), cyberbullying (43), internet safety (109), safety (92)

In the Classroom

This site is a one stop shop for information on cyberbullying. Use the resources from this site to put together a parent information night on cyberbullying. Teachers, librarians and counselors can use the videos and present them at a staff meeting. Purchase copies of the book "Bullying Beyond the Schoolyard" and run a book club. Post the links to the resources for students on your website for students to access from home or during library time. Include this resource as part of a schoolwide anti-cyberbullying campaign, challenging students to make their own anti-cyberbullying posters, glogs, or songs.
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TeachersFirst's Resources for Red Ribbon Week - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This collection of reviewed resources from TeachersFirst is selected to help students learn about drugs and alcohol for Red Ribbon week/month or at any time during the year. Use these...more
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This collection of reviewed resources from TeachersFirst is selected to help students learn about drugs and alcohol for Red Ribbon week/month or at any time during the year. Use these resources to plan events for Red Ribbon week or projects and classroom activities for drug and alcohol prevention. No matter what time of year, you can find information and activities to maintain the anti-drug message in your classroom and school.

tag(s): red ribbon week (8)

In the Classroom

Share these resources among all the teachers in your school as you prepare for Red Ribbon Week. Make this link available on your class web page for projects and more during any drug/alcohol unit.

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Too Smart to Start - U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Grades
3 to 12
1 Favorites 1  Comments
   
This site discusses ways to prevent underage drinking, provides advice, and suggests useful situation strategies. There are free downloadable materials, interactive activities, Web...more
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This site discusses ways to prevent underage drinking, provides advice, and suggests useful situation strategies. There are free downloadable materials, interactive activities, Web links, and videos. The comic strip graphics they use are effective and give the site a hip feel. This site also encourages youth to examine the influence the media can have.

tag(s): media literacy (58), red ribbon week (8)

In the Classroom

Share this site on your school website. Embed their widget onto a school website and have the class view a scrolling list of the latest news on underage alcohol use. Too Smart too Start is a great resource to support Red Ribbon Week and health studies. Use this site to develop Media Literacy." Have students test their knowledge about the "media" before opening up discussion about how to analyze the media's message. Brainstorm media forms students view on a daily basis and record them on graphic organizers using a site such as Padlet (reviewed here).
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Comments

This is another "go to" site for information. It is linked to the study conducted by NIH, "Teen Brain Under Construction," that is particularly informative for adults and teens alike. Patricia, NJ, Grades: 6 - 12

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D.A.R.E - Drug Abuse Resistance Education

Grades
K to 12
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The Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) program has a colorful new "cool" website that cleverly teaches students how to resist peer pressure, abstain from drugs, violence, and...more
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The Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) program has a colorful new "cool" website that cleverly teaches students how to resist peer pressure, abstain from drugs, violence, and gangs. Fun features such as Lucky Kat TV provide cartoons and videos about Internet safety, confronting bullies, and the correct use of prescription drugs. There are opportunities to share photos, poems, and videos and engage in interactive activities. Follow the adult link for more in-depth information meant for parents and caregivers.

tag(s): bullying (52), red ribbon week (8)

In the Classroom

Classes that are participating in the D.A.R.E program may want to bookmark this site on the computers in the learning station and use it as a center. Turn a podium style lecture into a more active learning experience. Project activities such as "D.A.R.E. Squares" onto an interactive whiteboard or projector and enjoy learning about the dangers of using prescription drugs that belong to others. Many of the site features will work as great starting points for individual or group projects. Have your students create an interactive online poster ("glog") using Glogster EDU, reviewed here. Even if your school does not have a D.A.R.E. program in place, this site will support content taught during red ribbon week or health class. Share this link on your class web page and/or in a parent newsletter for those who are dealing with these challenges.
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National Family Partnership - National Family Partnership

Grades
K to 12
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Download a free planning guide and additional resource materials for Red Ribbon week. The National Family Partnership was the sponsor of the first Red Ribbon week back in 1988. They...more
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Download a free planning guide and additional resource materials for Red Ribbon week. The National Family Partnership was the sponsor of the first Red Ribbon week back in 1988. They work to educate youth about dangers of underage drinking and drug abuse. Articles on this site include tips on how to prevent substance abuse and inspire adults to participate in drug prevention activities.

tag(s): red ribbon week (8)

In the Classroom

Schools participating in Red Ribbon week may want to post a link to this site on the school website to explain the history and purpose of this campaign. This site focuses primarily on parent support. This is a helpful resource to stay up to date with drug abuse trends and advice to offer families dealing with these issues.
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Girls Health - The Department of Health and Human Services

Grades
4 to 12
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The goal of Girls Health is to "promote healthy, positive behaviors in girls between the ages of 10 and 16." The site addresses issues all young teenage girls face. It ...more
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The goal of Girls Health is to "promote healthy, positive behaviors in girls between the ages of 10 and 16." The site addresses issues all young teenage girls face. It provides constructive advice on a number of health issues such as; body changes, nutrition, relationships, bullying, Internet safety, drugs, alcohol, and smoking. There are separate sections for educators and parents that include additional links and materials free to download. In 2008, Girls Health won the Aesculapius (Greek god of healing) Award of Excellence.

tag(s): red ribbon week (8)

In the Classroom

Girls Health's "Body" page is a great resource to support a reproductive health class. Make sure your guidance counselor knows about this site. Project this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Demonstrate how to navigate the site and then ask students to research various content areas in small groups or independently. Students can find the definition to key terms in the text by following their direct link to the glossary. Use the Drugs, Alcohol, and Smoking as a reliable source during Red Ribbon Week. Use this site as an anticipatory set or "activator" to introduce a unit on drugs. Ask the class to take an on-line quiz to determine what students already know about drugs and what misconceptions they may have. This site is an excellent resource to have students' access during Red Ribbon week. They can create a multimedia presentation to define various drugs and reveal the harmful effects they have on the body. Consider having students create a drug prevention booklet with PocketMod (reviewed here) from the information they learn.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Smilebox - Smilebox, Inc.

Grades
5 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
   
This resource allows you to create slide shows, greetings, scrapbooks, invitations, collages, and more. The download is free, but there are paid upgrades available if desired. For educational...more
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This resource allows you to create slide shows, greetings, scrapbooks, invitations, collages, and more. The download is free, but there are paid upgrades available if desired. For educational purposes, the upgrades are not needed. Photos, videos, and music can all be added to your creations. A Smilebox template must be used to make your creations. Products made with this program can be shared to web pages and blogs, social networking sites, emailed, saved, or printed for free. All themes are free. This is a free download, so make sure you have computers that have the capability to download before creating a lesson with this tool. See the reviewer's sample here.

tag(s): blogs (88), images (266), movies (65), photography (160), slides (63)

In the Classroom

You will need to be able to download this program, and you will need 4 MB of space on your computer to do so. The program will automatically pull some photos from Windows Media or iPhoto depending on what your computer uses for photos. You can save web images or use screen shots, as well, to be used in your creations. Watch copyright! Check out the review of Jing reviewed here for details and a down-loadable screen shot taker. (It is what our reviewer used to capture extra images for the sample!) From here, it is easy to simply click and follow the on screen instructions. The program is simple to navigate and very user friendly for those who are accustomed to web tools.

With the variety of formats, this program has a wide variety of applications in any type of classroom! Use in history class to have students create collages of different periods of time such as the American Civil War. Create topics such as the Lincoln's Election, the Gettysburg Address, Battle of Antietam, Emancipation Proclamation, Battle of Gettysburg, and Lee's Surrender. Have pairs or groups of three select topics at random, and then have them create a collage or "scrapbook" of the event. Try having students choose a role from which to create their assignment such as a Rebel soldier, a Union Soldier, a volunteer nurse, a mother or father of children fighting on different sides of the war, etc. Have students collect copyright free images online for their use or create their own by reenacting and creating visuals to take pictures for their productions. Unleash student creativity by showing them this tool as resource in creating presentations and projects for your class and others. What a fabulous tool to use on the first day of school (as a welcome), beginning of a new unit, or back to school night with the parents! Elementary classes could create whole-class scrapbooks of curriculum projects, such as their science garden or Colonial Days celebration.

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