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Mosaic Maker - Big Huge Labs

Grades
6 to 12
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Use digital photographs or online images to quickly and easily create a collage that you can download and print. You can search for photos for a particular theme or browse ...more
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Use digital photographs or online images to quickly and easily create a collage that you can download and print. You can search for photos for a particular theme or browse your own collections. Then, select a layout, colors for the background and border, how many images you want to include, and start choosing your photos or entering the URL of the image you want to use. Next, simply scroll to the bottom of the page to click Create. It's that simple!

tag(s): back to school (58), book reports (35), collages (17)

In the Classroom

For 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.
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Common Core State Standards - Common Core State Standards Initiative Team

Grades
K to 12
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The Common Core State Standards Initiative is a nationwide effort led by the National Governor's Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers to establish a common set...more
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The Common Core State Standards Initiative is a nationwide effort led by the National Governor's Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers to establish a common set of educational standards which aligns benchmarks and expectations across state lines. This system builds on what states are already doing by providing an opportunity to share experiences, best practices, and lessons, while maintaining high expectations that insure the quality of education across America to enable our students to maintain a competitive edge in the global economy.

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 (94)

In the Classroom

Take 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.
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The Data Liberation Front - Google

Grades
7 to 12
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Do you use various Web 2.0 items and are unsure how to move information from one to the other (or from the cloud to your computer?) Use this site to ...more
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Do you use various Web 2.0 items and are unsure how to move information from one to the other (or from the cloud to your computer?) Use this site to learn how to move information from one area to another. For example, learn how to import and export bookmarks. Also learn how to import, export, or zip google documents to your computer.

tag(s): directions (20), resources (112)

In the Classroom

Provide 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.
 

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Wikimedia Commons - Wkimedia Foundation

Grades
K to 12
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Wikimedia Commons is a huge database of free media files (images, sound, and video clips) available in a wide range of languages. You can both access or contribute files. Using ...more
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Wikimedia Commons is a huge database of free media files (images, sound, and video clips) available in a wide range of languages. You can both access or contribute files. Using the same technology as Wikipedia, you can edit, upload, and embed media file projects into any Wikimedia project. Every media file comes with a description, name of the author and complete licensing details. Search for videos, images, or sound media by keyword, content categories, nature, science, or society. This is an amazing resource to use when searching for any multimedia content.

tag(s): creative commons (21)

In the Classroom

Address 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 Glogster (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.

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Quiznator - Quiznator

Grades
2 to 12
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Quiznator is a free, web-based worksheet, test, and any other type of learning document creator. Membership is free and is promised to always be free. You are able to access ...more
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Quiznator is a free, web-based worksheet, test, and any other type of learning document creator. Membership is free and is promised to always be free. You are able to access your creations online from anywhere! Email is required to join, however, verification is not required. Add your documents, test questions, and worksheets and let Quiznator organize and update them for you. This makes creating multiple version of the same exam quick and painless. This is a great way to back up files on the web for school!

tag(s): worksheets (60)

In the Classroom

Upload 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.
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A New Way to Lecture - Michael Zimmer

Grades
4 to 12
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At this site you will find a slide show with at least fourteen different programs you can use instead of PowerPoint for your lectures. Are your PowerPoint lectures boring you ...more
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At this site you will find a slide show with at least fourteen different programs you can use instead of PowerPoint for your lectures. Are your PowerPoint lectures boring you and your students? Take a look at this online slide show, and choose one of fourteen different programs to convert just one of your PowerPoint lectures. Not only is each program explained, but many have suggestions for integrating your lectures with the program. Take a look. Learn about some great web 2.0 sites (Glogster, Prezi, TypeWith.me, Animoto, ToonDoo, and many others). Note that many of the tools mentioned are also reviewed on TeachersFirst in greater detail if you want to learn more.

tag(s): chat (51), comics and cartoons (74), digital storytelling (144)

In the Classroom

Surprise 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. Create an online poster "glog" on using Glogster to demonstrate a new math concept. Once you see a tool that sounds interesting, read its full review on TeachersFirst to find even more ways to use it.
 
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Bingle.nu - bingle.nu

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

In the Classroom

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

Grades
2 to 12
1 Favorites 1  Comments
 
This site is quick, easy, requires no registration, and FREE. Upload your image to this site in order to create a smaller file size for use on other sites and ...more
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This site is quick, easy, requires no registration, and FREE. Upload your image to this site in order to create a smaller file size for use on other sites and applications as well as adding effects such as corner rounding, rotating, tinting, changing contrast/brightness, or adding borders/edges. Upload an image up to 5 MB to alter easily with this site. Web resizer automatically reduces the file size to create an optimized image. Be sure to click "apply changes" once you have finished making selections. Click "start over" to remove previous changes. Download the image easily in a JPEG format.

tag(s): images (266)

In the Classroom

Provide 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.)
 
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Comments

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

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Titanpad - Titanpad authors

Grades
5 to 12
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Looking for an easy way to collaborate with students? Use TitanPad. Easily create a new public document, share the unique url, enter your name, and begin writing. Each collaborator...more
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Looking for an easy way to collaborate with students? Use TitanPad. Easily create a new public document, share the unique url, enter your name, and begin writing. Each collaborator receives their own color, making it easy to track each person's changes. Note that in order to keep a working document private, the url should not be shared with those not involved in the collaboration. Changes to the document are made in real time. Save the final document as html, bookmarked file, plain text, word, PDF, or as an open document. See past revisions and view the history slider to see the changes in order they occurred. This is a great way to "witness" the writing process and have simple and easy collaboration! If you were an EtherPad user, TitanPad is the reincarnation of your old favorite! Note: Be sure to READ the policy about how long TitanPAds remain before being deleted. It is linked at the start of every new pad! If you do not make many revisions, your work may only remain for 2 weeks since you last accessed it.

tag(s): editing (61), process writing (42), writing (359)

In the Classroom

Users 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.

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Bag the Web - BagTheWeb

Grades
5 to 12
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Want a location to place and share all of your vital links and information? Use Bag The Web to find a great place to view and share these links. Create ...more
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Want a location to place and share all of your vital links and information? Use Bag The Web to find a great place to view and share these links. Create an account easily and create your bag. Name it, find links, and paste them along with the titles and brief description. Find suggested resources below based upon information already entered. Add these easily with the click of a button. Use the embed code to place into a site, wiki, or blog to share with students or others. Share also by using Twitter, Facebook, or other services.

Here is an Example TF Edge "bag":

tag(s): resources (112), webquests (29)

In the Classroom

Users 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.

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Creative Sessions - Tuts+

Grades
6 to 12
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Explore the world of graphic design and cartooning through mini-lessons on Character Illustration and Illustrative Lettering, and more. Click "Browse sessions" to see the latest offerings...more
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Explore the world of graphic design and cartooning through mini-lessons on Character Illustration and Illustrative Lettering, and more. Click "Browse sessions" to see the latest offerings on this blog-style graphic arts site intended to help users of (expensive) Adobe creative software. You need not own the software, however, to click on images and explore a series of ten mini-lessons and galleries of images created by artists in the field. See inspiring new ways to create graphic fonts and artwork either on paper or using free digital paint tools such as Queeky reviewed here or Tuxpaint reviewed here.

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.

tag(s): design (83), graphic design (35)

In the Classroom

Share 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.

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Curriki - Global Education and Learning Community

Grades
K to 12
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Curriki is a website that has been designed to help educators connect online - the name comes from "curriculum" and "wiki". Teachers can search and find resources and lesson plans ...more
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Curriki is a website that has been designed to help educators connect online - the name comes from "curriculum" and "wiki". Teachers can search and find resources and lesson plans in all subjects. In addition, educators can share their resources within the community. After becoming a member you can save favorite resources to your favorites page for easy access anywhere. Resources can be rated and reviewed to help narrow down search findings. Curriki also offers online communities that can be created and joined by its members.

tag(s): resources (112)

In the Classroom

Use Curriki as a resource to find materials to use in your classroom. Join communities of educators with common interests to share and find resources.

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Cyberbullying Help: Preventing Bullying in the Digital Age - CyberBullyHelp.com

Grades
3 to 12
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This site contains all of the information that educators and parents need to know about cyber bullying. It contains resources, publications, lessons and links to help teach students...more
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This site contains all of the information that educators and parents need to know about cyber bullying. It contains resources, publications, lessons and links to help teach students about cyber-bullying.

tag(s): bullying (52), internet safety (106), safety (89)

In the Classroom

Share this link on your class web page and/or in a parent newsletter to help parents learn about cyber bullying. Assign students Olivia's Letter lesson as a homework assignment. Using the ABC's of cyber bullying, have students work in cooperative groups and create their own cyber bullying ABC book using information from the site. Challenge students to create an online book using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here. Though the curriculum needs to be purchased, the site does include a scope and sequence for the cyber bullying curriculum. It is a great place to start if you are thinking of implementing a cyber-bullying curriculum. Use the downloadable PowerPoint slides for a parent information night. You can also listen to an interview with the books authors.
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Wired Safety - Parry Aftab, Esq

Grades
K to 12
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This site contains all of the information that educators and parents need to know about keeping kids safe online. It contains games, resources, publications and links to help teach...more
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This site contains all of the information that educators and parents need to know about keeping kids safe online. It contains games, resources, publications and links to help teach students about internet safety and cyber bullying. Click on the link for parents, tweens, kids, educators, or teens. The site challenges students to learn about the rules of cyber world and find their inner superhero. This site provides wonderful information to educators on a variety of "cyber" topics. For students to fully use this site, they must register (via snail mail). However, many of the informational links are available online with no registration required. Please note the link to their safe search engine was broken at the time of this review, but there were links to other safe search engines. In addition, the site of the week seems to be from 2005. Even so, there is a lot of useful information available at this site for students, teachers, and parents.

tag(s): bullying (52), internet safety (106), safety (89)

In the Classroom

Share this link on your class web page and/or in a parent newsletter to help parents learn about internet safety and cyber bullying. Educators use the site as a place to gather information to create a cyber-bullying curriculum. Have your students visit the kids or tweens section and have them read the articles written by real kids. After reading have your students choose a topic and write their own article. Have them publish the articles to a blog or use a Web 2.0 tool like Bookemon, reviewed here, to create an online book. Have students take the quiz to find out if they've ever been cyber bullied.
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Ad Out - adout.org

Grades
K to 12
2 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Make any web site advertising free using the cool tool. Tired of directing kids back to the web site they should be using due to accidental clicks on ads? ...more
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Make any web site advertising free using the cool tool. Tired of directing kids back to the web site they should be using due to accidental clicks on ads? Use this free resource to make the page you are using ad free. Paste the web url into the field on this site to view your site in an ad free manner. To share the adfree resource, simply copy the new web address that is now ad free to share with your students. Note that some websites may be blocked by adfree. Check on your school computers to see if adfree is blocked or whether district filters already block ads. Missing ads show up as blank spaces on the pages.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): advertising (33)

In the Classroom

Use this resource to use sites without ads to keep students on track and not be distracted by information that is not content Be sure to share this link on your class website for families to use at home..
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Using Videoconferencing to Support the Use of Quality Texts - Mark Warner

Grades
3 to 12
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This site has some very clever ideas for using videoconferencing to help students delve deeper into quality texts, or extend their knowledge of a topic of study. As the creator ...more
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This site has some very clever ideas for using videoconferencing to help students delve deeper into quality texts, or extend their knowledge of a topic of study. As the creator of this site says, "Some of the ideas shown could easily be used as drama activities but there are some which would be improved by bringing in an outside helper using videoconference." Another very special aspect of this site is the book titles used, and the variety of age groups represented. This is a must see site!

tag(s): authors (120)

In the Classroom

One of the ideas presented is the "Interview." Use your interactive whiteboard for students to create questions to ask the author or an expert about the book or the subject of the book. Video the interview, or save the video conference, and have students reflect on the quality of the questions once the students have had the opportunity to illicit answers to their questions. Use your interactive whiteboard to have students brainstorm what they would do differently next time as far as developing good questions.
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Reading Strategies for All Ages - Jen Farr

Grades
K to 12
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This collection of reading strategies will make you feel like you just hit the jackpot for the best ways to teach reading strategies that are sometimes difficult to explain or ...more
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This collection of reading strategies will make you feel like you just hit the jackpot for the best ways to teach reading strategies that are sometimes difficult to explain or for students to grasp and apply. This site is full of activities directly linked to printable guidelines and worksheets. Better yet, there are Power Point Presentations and Videos in ready-to-show formats all organized, described, and available from the home page. You will find a wide variety suitable from elementary to secondary, earmarked by grade levels, as well as ideas for how and when to use them effectively. Whether you are searching for a fresh approach to the tried and true, such as brainstorming or think aloud strategies, or for more innovative approaches, such as interactive notebooks or sociograms, you will be delighted with this discovery.

tag(s): brain (72), brainstorming (23), reading strategies (45)

In the Classroom

Save this site in your favorites on your class computer or TeachersFirst membership. Open the doors to engage students in the active reading process to enhance levels of comprehension between the text and the reader. The flexible framework lets you choose to use any of the strategies as a stand-alone, ready-to-present on the interactive whiteboard, or as a lesson for whole class viewing. Many familiar literary works are used as examples, or you may easily apply the strategy to any literary work that your class is currently reading. Videos and Power Points for modeling and practicing the strategies are embedded, so all you have to do is click to start and let them work their magic. Follow up by downloading the printable study guides, graphic organizers, and other handouts to use before, during, and after reading.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Creative Commons Search - Creative Common

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

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

In the Classroom

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

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Head Magnet

Grades
3 to 12
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HeadMagnet is a new twist on flashcards. You can create flashcards for any subject that you wish or use cards already available on the site. Once the cards are made, ...more
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HeadMagnet is a new twist on flashcards. You can create flashcards for any subject that you wish or use cards already available on the site. Once the cards are made, there are different study modes to choose - slide show, self-test and normal (type in responses). Study sessions can even be timed. After completing the study session HeadMagnet predicts which items will need more study time, enabling you to spend more time on material that hasn't been learned yet. Study lists can be shared with others, and you can search for already created materials. After completion of a study session, you can access statistics that show your overall memory of the material. You need to register to create your own materials but all items are free. Registration requires and email address. Tip: rather than using your personal or work email, create a free Gmail account to use for memberships. If you plan to have students register individually, you may want to create your own Gmail account with up to 20 subaccounts for each group of students (by code name or number) within your classes. Here is a blog post that tells how to set up GMail subaccounts to use for any online membership service.

tag(s): flash cards (45)

In the Classroom

Create flashcards for any subject to review material being learned in class. Use this as a review for vocabulary before tests. As a pre-assessment, create a study list to use on the interactive whiteboard or projector to find out what students already know. Provide this link on your class website for students to use to create flashcards both in and out of your classroom. Learning support teachers may want to show students how to create their own cards. The process of creating the will actually reinforce skills, as well.

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Scriblink - Your Online WhiteBoard - Scriblink

Grades
K to 12
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Need an effective, no nonsense, online visual communication tool? Here it is! Scriblink is an online whiteboard application that allows you to create images, drawings, signs, and so...more
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Need an effective, no nonsense, online visual communication tool? Here it is! Scriblink is an online whiteboard application that allows you to create images, drawings, signs, and so much more. Best of all, once you have created your information you can save it to a URL or email it. Communicate with students, colleagues, friends and family with this tool! No membership is required! This tool will not work unless you have Java enabled in your browser. Many Mac computers have Java disabled.

tag(s): iwb (31)

In the Classroom

This resource could be used if you do not have an interactive whiteboard in your room. It operates from your computer so all you need is to connect to a projector,and there is your makeshift interactive whiteboard. Or you could use this resource to create "board space" on your classroom wiki to convey information to your students. It would be very helpful for online teaching as well! Have students create their own Scriblink whiteboard presentations as culminating activities in any subject area. Learning support and highly visual students will benefit from the opportunity to make "visual notes" for study and review. Offer Scriblink as one of several review options in addition to a graphic organizer tool and flashcard tool so students can experiment to find their most effective study support, World language students can use Scriblink to create illustrated vocabulary/conversation in their new language.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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