Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomAdd this site to your Favorites and use it for an ongoing source of ideas and interesting websites to bring into the classroom and to explore. Challenge students to make a digital collection of "primary source" materials about your school or local community as they come to appreciate the value of such documents and artifacts through a historical eye.
Grades1 to 12
In the ClassroomShare this link on your class web page and/or in a parent newsletter to help parents learn about internet safety. Use the lessons that are found in the resources section with your students. The activities are cooperative and scenario based. Use the activities for adults to run a parent information night. Use the general internet safety presentation and present it to your staff or at back to school night. Have the students and parents both sign the family contract of digital safety.
GradesK to 12
tag(s): assessment (108)
In the ClassroomUse this site to search for rubrics for any type of assignment or classroom use. Material isn't limited to academic use, it also includes attendance, homework, and other types of rubrics.
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomStudents can use this cover to hold a music CD or DVD movie that relates to a literary work, but there are a lot of other great extensions you can implement as a means to assess critical thinking skills, especially when it comes to synthesizing and assimilating concepts. Rather than assigning a book review, literary essay, or standard research paper, adventurous technology users could burn a CD of PowerPoint slides or use the CD cover to hold a DVD slideshow of narrated photographs. Slightly less adventurous technology users could use it to house a written assignment related to plot, theme, or character study, or to illustrate a poem or narrative. Big Huge Labs offers other similar tools, such as Magazine Cover Maker reviewed here and Mosaic Maker reviewed here, which could be used in conjunction with the CD Cover Maker to make your projects even more amazing. Check out the Big Huge Labs educator account. Easily pre-register students to avoid creating logins, view and download their creations, and view the site advertisement free. You will find information about the Educator Account here.
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomFor security and safety, be sure to instruct students about copyright laws regarding the use of photos from the World Wide Web, and follow your school's internet security policies for use of social networking sites, such as Facebook and Flickr albums that are available from this web page. Students can use this tool to organize photos and images for numerous creative photo projects, such as report covers, to illustrate their interpretation of a theme, to analyze a character's traits, or to visually represent a topic or concept. For adventurous technology users, try pairing the Mosaic Maker together with another one of Big Huge Labs free photo projects, such as The CD Cover Maker reviewed here for designing an amazing way to "package" a book report, research project, or other assignment. In lower grades, use mosaic maker for teacher-made collages of words that start with a certain letter or of animal classifications and hang them on bulletin boards for students to guess. Check out the Big Huge Labs educator account. Easily pre-register students to avoid creating logins, view and download their creations, and view the site advertisement free. You will find information about the Educator Account here.
GradesK to 12
Visit this website to find out exactly what the national K-12 standards are for English language arts and literacy in history/social studies, science and technology, as well as mathematics, and to find out if your state is one many states (at the time of this review) that have already committed to adopt the Common Core State Standards. Watch videos and the recorded webinar, and read about the key points and rigorous curriculum standards, including the content and skills related to the use of media and technology for critical analysis and production.
tag(s): commoncore (95)
In the ClassroomTake a look at exemplars and sample performance tasks and students' writing to consider how you can integrate these ideas into your own planning to prepare students for the growing challenges of today's world. You can also sign up to receive updates via email. For more information about the Common Core and implementing it in your classes, see TeachersFirst's Common Core: The Fuss Over Non-Fiction, a Q/A article for elementary teachers, and TeachersFirst's resources tagged Common Core for many helpful sites.
Grades7 to 12
In the ClassroomProvide this link as a resource to your students. Allow them the opportunity to learn techniques to move and manage their online information. Consider putting this link on your class website for students (and parents) to access at home.
GradesK to 12
tag(s): creative commons (22)
In the ClassroomAddress the needs of the visual learner and include media files as part of the research process. Wikipedia Commons offers a way for students to gain an understanding of content through images, sounds, and video. Give students the opportunity to communicate their knowledge by narrating a slideshow of images found on Wikipedia Commons or create multimedia presentations on a site such as Lucidpress, reviewed here. These free media files will also help ELL or ESL teachers explain concepts and key vocabulary. This site is a valuable resource for imagery useful when creating presentations, lectures, digital stories, reports or to include on a class websites. Students learning a foreign language may benefit from using Wikipedia Commons to learn about more about the culture and lifestyle of the country whose language they are studying.
GradesK to 6
Kindersite collaborates with outside institutions to develop educational projects that compile resources, generate new curriculum models, create training materials, and implement teacher-training seminars. Researchers can gather user data from Kindersite that represents varying population sizes, geographical groupings, and languages.
General Tips and Reminders: Some sites originate from the UK, so some of the pronunciations and spellings may differ from those in American English. There is some advertising on the right side of the page. Some links may direct students to sites that also contain advertising. Warn your students to avoid them.
tag(s): literacy (107)
In the ClassroomInvigorate shared reading with Kindersite's songs and stories. View the colorful illustration and text on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Some stories and songs highlight the tracking of words. Other sites provide character voices when you click the text in quotations. The animation will definitely engage everyone even those who wiggle on the carpet. Differentiate computer centers with the "my page" function. Save interactive tasks that target the instructional needs of students. Make a shortcut to the "my page" site collections on classroom computers and use it as a center. Be sure to take advantage of the professional resources Kindersites provides as well. Post a link to this site on your school website for parents to access at home.
Grades2 to 12
tag(s): worksheets (62)
In the ClassroomUpload your test questions during the summer and feel free to add more as your school year progresses, but use this tool to save a bundle of time on test and quiz creation. Put your worksheet or activity sheet questions into the program and use the questions on quizzes.
Grades4 to 12
In the ClassroomSurprise your students and yourself with how effective any one of these programs can be with your material or THEIR presentations. Create a comic strip to replace a traditional grammar lesson. Use a class wiki to discuss and debate topics in history class. Once you see a tool that sounds interesting, read its full review on TeachersFirst to find even more ways to use it.
GradesK to 12
In the ClassroomProvide different search engines for students to use. Many students will obviously prefer one over the other and this is one more search engine that students can use. As an introduction to searching, provide a list of search engines and provide the task to rate each search engine and the results that are obtained. Discuss the top results as well as features of each search engine that make it user friendly, etc. Rate the top results to determine relevance to the search term as well as use in class.
Grades2 to 12
tag(s): images (275)
In the ClassroomProvide the link to this site for students to use in altering and resizing images for use in presentations and online applications. Be sure students understand the file size needed for the various sites that are used in class (for example, wikispaces has a 20 MB file size limit.)
Use this all the time. Easy to use and SO helpful. You can use online, don't have to download.Frances, CT, Grades: 6 - 8
Grades5 to 12
In the ClassroomUsers must be able to manage and share URLs and track changes in a document. (Titanpad makes this unbelievable easy.) Create an account in order to create a private space.
Use a private space for all of your classroom work. Simply create a new pad for new work. With an account, change the settings of your pad to public or keep it private. Be sure to share the URL on a wiki, blog, or site for access to the pad. Be sure final drafts (or rough drafts for that matter) are saved.
Use this site securely. If concerned about others stumbling into a collaboration, create an account to receive your own private space. As Titanpad does not require users to register for public space to begin editing, no email, logins, or passwords are required. Students are up and editing without taking precious classroom time logging in or creating accounts.
Host or record thoughts from brainstorming sessions. Use with groups for any type of project based learning. Students can enter not only during school hours but outside of school as well. Use to interview others including experts, people for school news, sports teams, and anything else you can think of. Use in curriculum planning, creating of review sheets (let your students help you on this,) drafting plans, and taking notes from meetings. Allow class scribes to use to enter material discussed during class. Use in workshops, trainings, etc. Common Core writing encourages collaboration as part of authentic writing process. Use the varied colors and revision history for students to demonstrate their collaboration.
Grades5 to 12
Here is an Example TF Edge "bag":
In the ClassroomUsers must be able to create an account, a new bag, and find relevant material to be placed into the bag. Use of embed codes or sharing of URL's are required to share the "bag" with others.
Create bags for each unit in your classes. Allow students to enter great resources that can then be used by all students. Build a bag for your class instead with resources that will be needed by students. Discuss annotating resources by creating short descriptors for each of the sites being linked. Create a class bag and then separate bags for units of study. Bags can be linked to each other, creating a great system to organize links and resources.
Parent permission advised before posting student work created using this tool
Includes Interaction w general public/ public galleries with unmoderated content
Requires registration/log-in (WITH email)
Products can be embedded
Products can be shared by URL
Grades6 to 12
Read the art concepts and try specific challenges to improve skills and refine your artist's eye. These "sessions" actually took place over a ten day period with professional artists participating and submitting work, but the archived results remain online. Note: Because the artwork is submitted by the general "artist" public, teachers would be wise to preview before sharing the site in class.
In the ClassroomShare portions of a "Session" on a projector or interactive whiteboard as the intro to an art lesson on text, fonts, or advertising. Share this link when students are creating their own digital comics in support of curriculum content in any class. Provide this link along with art options for student projects to address visual learners and feature visual/spatial intelligence. Art/digital arts teachers will want to share this link on their class web page as a student reference for working independently. Tech ed teachers will want to share the typography ideas and information from today's professional graphic artists.
GradesK to 5
In the ClassroomUse stories on the interactive whiteboard or projector to teach story elements - pause as the story is read to allow students to retell details to the stopping point then make predictions of what will happen next. Help students understand disabilities and adaptations to disabilities through watching the stories being told in sign language. This is also a great resource for students with deaf/hearing impaired parents or students/teachers trying to learn or practice sign language. In sign language classes, consider creating your own signed story videos for children's books and share them on a tool such as TeacherTube reviewed here.
GradesK to 12
tag(s): resources (112)