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Team Fink Book Groups: Extreme Speed Booking - Anastasis Academy

Grades
4 to 12
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Get inspired and motivated to explore different books with Extreme Speed Booking. Choose the "Books" tab to find a list of books. Take two minutes to look at the first ...more
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Get inspired and motivated to explore different books with Extreme Speed Booking. Choose the "Books" tab to find a list of books. Take two minutes to look at the first book. Click to go directly to the Amazon preview of the book, including several pages of the first chapter(s). When two minutes is up, record your impressions of the book and move on to the next one on the list. There is a "share page" option on the site to record responses; however, these go back to the site owners.
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tag(s): book lists (128), independent reading (128), literature (275)

In the Classroom

Inspire reluctant or hesitant readers with this site. Have the entire class participate in one session. Ring a bell every two minutes, allow one minute for quick responses, then move on to the next book. Create your own recording document similar to the one on the site using Google Docs reviewed here. Explore the Find a Book portion of the site and create your own Extreme Speed Booking site. Tailor it to your students' needs or class content using an easy to use website creator such as Weebly reviewed here or a class wiki. Have students create their own speed booking website based on books they enjoy reading. Create a graph to record students' interests in books to post for reading choices.

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Book Report Sandwich Station - Scholastic

Grades
2 to 6
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Take the old "sandwich" style book report and put a new spin on it. Enjoy using this simple book report format. After inputting your name and the name and author ...more
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Take the old "sandwich" style book report and put a new spin on it. Enjoy using this simple book report format. After inputting your name and the name and author of the book, write different parts of the book report as parts of a "sandwich." The lettuce is the plot summary, followed by the mayonnaise (plot climax), tomato, cheese, turkey, and bread. Each layer asks for a brief input. After filling in all the parts, you can select if you would like to leave room to draw a picture on the printed report. A print preview displays the completed report before you print it out. The printed version does not include the sandwich images, just the information you entered.
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tag(s): book reports (35)

In the Classroom

After reading a book as a class, demonstrate how to fill in the "layers" of the sandwich, all the while discussing the elements of fiction with your students. Share how to use this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. After that, put your students who have read the same book in pairs to create a joint book report. Alternatively, literature circle groups can use this report for a culminating project. Since the report isn't printed out in "sandwich" format, cut colored paper into the different parts of the sandwich and mount what prints. The sandwich book report is a perfect place to start upper primary, ESL/ELL, and special education students with the elements of fiction and what is required in a book report.

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Children's Music Song of the Month - Nancy Stewart

Grades
K to 4
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Download a free song each month including the audio file, sheet music, MP3 recording, and accompanying activities from Children's Music by Nancy. Also available on the site are monthly...more
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Download a free song each month including the audio file, sheet music, MP3 recording, and accompanying activities from Children's Music by Nancy. Also available on the site are monthly archives since 2006. Many songs include links to similar songs available on the site. Search by categories such as Science, Language, Holidays or alphabetically. Simple instructions for downloading resources are included on the site along with directions for making your own CD with the songs.

tag(s): holidays (147), preK (281), songs (52)

In the Classroom

Use content area songs on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) and speakers to introduce new units. For example, when beginning a unit on the Solar System, play "In Our Solar System (Bye Bye Pluto)" to introduce students to the planets' names. Share the site with your school's music teacher as a way to extend activities between subjects. Help students learn Spanish or French by learning songs from the site together. Be sure to share this link with parents. They may want to put some of the songs on the family MP3 player to enjoy on car trips.
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Reading Bear - Watch, Know, Learn

Grades
K to 2
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Reading Bear is a systematic program that teaches beginning vocabulary and concepts while introducing phonics patterns. The Getting Started video gives an overview of the program...more
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Reading Bear is a systematic program that teaches beginning vocabulary and concepts while introducing phonics patterns. The Getting Started video gives an overview of the program as it explains the software, videos, and tips for using the system. Choose from any phonics sounds or start from the beginning of the program. Then choose from different video or slideshow tutorials (such as sound it out quickly, let me sound it out, or audio and silent sentences). As sounds are pronounced, the corresponding letter is highlighted. Quizzes are available at the end of each section. Choose from different settings to adjust font, letter color, or order of presentation. At the time of this review, 16 presentations are available. The goal of the site is to create a total of 50 presentations. So check back often.

Some of the video clips are hosted on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable. You could always view the videos at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid reviewed here to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): alphabet (92), phonics (75), preK (281)

In the Classroom

This is an excellent resource for use on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Choose from the different options when presenting letter sounds in your classroom to present letters in different formats. Create a link on classroom computers to use as a phonics center activity. Share this site with parents through your classroom website or newsletter as a wonderful way to practice and learn letter sounds at home. Use this site with ESL/ELL students. Speech pathologists and special education teachers may want to bookmark this excellent site, too.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Wondermind - Tate Liverpool

Grades
4 to 12
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Wondermind is a set of four mini-activities with accompanying videos, illustrating the fascinating ways our brains work. Experience the activities/illustrations to help prepare for...more
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Wondermind is a set of four mini-activities with accompanying videos, illustrating the fascinating ways our brains work. Experience the activities/illustrations to help prepare for the interactive video that explains an aspect of the brain, such as how we learn language, how the brain develops from childhood to adulthood, how memory works, how we sense our own location, and how we learn self-control. Wondermind, set to the theme of Alice in Wonderland, will delight you with the quirky, clever, or just plain weird art inspired by Alice in Wonderland and used as part of the designs. The activities can be skipped if you prefer to just view the videos.

tag(s): body systems (57), brain (72), human body (121), logic (235), psychology (64)

In the Classroom

Create a link on classroom computers for students to try the challenges and then view videos on your interactive whiteboard together. Check out the learning resources link to view a video with additional ideas for visual perception games and activities. Use as part of your Alice in Wonderland or Lewis Carroll units. If you teach psychology, anatomy, or health, this exploration will offer a new angle into how the brain works. Use the game and video about memory during a unit on study skills and discovering how students learn best. Teachers of gifted may also want to explore this site as part of a unit on the gifted mind. Learning support teachers may also want to use portions to help students better understand why their minds operate differently -- not "badly." Bright Asperger's students might be fascinated by the portion on the prefrontal cortex and how we learn self-control.
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ICT Games - Literacy - James Barrett

Grades
K to 5
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Check out these free interactive literacy games for the emergent learner. Practicing basic skills is an entertaining experience at ICT Games. The skills include: spelling patterns,...more
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Check out these free interactive literacy games for the emergent learner. Practicing basic skills is an entertaining experience at ICT Games. The skills include: spelling patterns, phoneme patterns, blending sounds, high frequency words, beginning science vocabulary, using rhyming to read new and unfamiliar words, and reading for understanding. It also has interactive dictionaries for the beginner through upper elementary learner. There is no registration required. Note that the site is from England, so there are minor spelling and terminology differences from U.S. English in a few games. Preview the specific game to be sure.
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tag(s): dictionaries (56), literacy (103), preK (281), reading comprehension (116), rhymes (33), spelling (168)

In the Classroom

Use your projector and interactive whiteboard to introduce the site. You might start with "The Wordy Woods," an interactive resource for displaying useful words. Start by checking the lists, and have students identify words they've already learned in class. Populate the "woods" with those first. Save this! Then, as students learn new words have them fill in the forest.

ESL/ELL students with emergent literacy skills will benefit from this site by practicing spelling and reading skills. Make a shortcut to this site on classroom computers and use it as a center. Use a program like Symbaloo, reviewed here, to create link shortcuts on your student computers. Include a link to the ITC Games on your classroom website or blog for students to practice at home. This is a great site for students to use for additional practice on a skill that is difficult.
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AskKids.com - Ask.com

Grades
2 to 8
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AskKids is more than a search engine for elementary/middle school students. Here you will see reviews for movies and games. You can ask questions and search for information by typing...more
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AskKids is more than a search engine for elementary/middle school students. Here you will see reviews for movies and games. You can ask questions and search for information by typing in keywords. AskKids organizes search results in related images, current events, and encyclopedia results. The Ask.com editorial team selected each website as child appropriate or as a relevant and practical site for reference and learning.

tag(s): search engines (65)

In the Classroom

Introduce AskKids on your interactive whiteboard or projector, showing the different options available. Then have students explore this site independently or in small groups. They can learn how to use a search engine, and how to ask questions to get the best results, by looking at this site with guidance from an adult. Post a link to AskKids.com on your webpage for easy access for students and parents. Make AskKids the home page on classroom computers for easy access.

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Skloog - Skloog, LLC

Grades
K to 12
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Use this visual bookmarking program to help you keep your online favorites/bookmarks organized. Choose to make shortcuts (tiles with the logo of the site you are bookmarking) for places...more
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Use this visual bookmarking program to help you keep your online favorites/bookmarks organized. Choose to make shortcuts (tiles with the logo of the site you are bookmarking) for places you visit repeatedly. The tiles make it visual and so easy to use! Can't find the logo? Submit a site by clicking on a button at the bottom of the home page. Access and add to your Skloog bookmarks from anywhere using any computer, your mobile phone, or email. Make Skloog one of the tools on your browser's tool bar in order to add to your favorites quickly and easily. Add or change the preset category tabs that show at the top. Search your favorites by tags, URL, or website name. An added feature is the Skloog tab in the upper right corner of the menu on your short cut page. Click to find some of Skloog's favorite sites.

tag(s): bookmarks (60), resources (112)

In the Classroom

This resource is best used as a teacher sharing tool for sharing links, RSS feeds, and other resources for students to use on specific projects or as general course links. Use this site to share with other professionals, team members, or parents. Use the categories to save bookmarks for different units you have in your classroom. Make your Skloog page the homepage for your computer, too.

Consider having a category for student use for webquests, tools you want them to use, and creative commons images, music, etc. Also, create a category where students update with suggestions from class members. Use different colored alphabet tiles on a Skloog for younger, non-reader students. For example, give each subject its own distinctive color. They will also recognize logos well before they read!

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What's Your News? - Warner Brothers Entertainment

Grades
K to 3
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This "news show" aimed at 4-7 year olds introduces you to the wider world from a newsroom staffed by ants. News includes information such as the arrival of a new ...more
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This "news show" aimed at 4-7 year olds introduces you to the wider world from a newsroom staffed by ants. News includes information such as the arrival of a new sibling, friends coming for a sleepover, or purchase of a new game. Play games that teach how news is reported, watch videos from What's Your News on Nick, Jr. or print activities to make your own newspaper.

tag(s): journalism (46), news (261), newspapers (94), preK (281)

In the Classroom

This site would be great to include with a community or neighbors unit - share classroom news by posting to the site. Choose weekly classroom reporters to interview students or teachers and come up with weekly headline. Video your reporters and share them on a site such as TeacherTube reviewed here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Night Zookeeper - Joshua Davidson

Grades
K to 5
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Enter a fantastical online world in which you create your own magical animals. Read and create stories, play games, create fascinating (and funny) facts about your new animal, and more...more
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Enter a fantastical online world in which you create your own magical animals. Read and create stories, play games, create fascinating (and funny) facts about your new animal, and more while learning about animals. Explore creative writing and art activities. Read the story of the night zookeeper or listen by choosing the audio play button. Your completed animals can be uploaded to include with the story and suggestions are offered for describing the animals such as where does the animal live, and tell about what makes it special. You can also download a sample unit that includes literacy and art lesson plans. Simple registration of a username and password is required to access activities.

tag(s): creative writing (166), creativity (109), digital storytelling (144)

In the Classroom

Share this site on classroom computers for students to read and listen to the Night Zookeeper story then encourage students to create their own animal to be added to the zoo. Use the included graphic organizer to help students design their animal. Create a link to the site on classroom computers and allow students to explore and discover site activities. Use an online tool such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here) to create a visual comparison of animals included in the zoo or imaginary animals vs. real animals.

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How To Make Digital Flashcards With Google Docs Spreadsheets - MakeUseOf

Grades
4 to 12
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Want to make flashcards using tools you already know? Follow these step by step directions for making flashcards from a Google Spreadsheet. Directions also include screenshots, making...more
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Want to make flashcards using tools you already know? Follow these step by step directions for making flashcards from a Google Spreadsheet. Directions also include screenshots, making the process much easier. You need a Google Doc account and some familiarity with using spreadsheets. This site does include comments. At the time of this review, all comments were appropriate for classroom use.
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tag(s): flash cards (46)

In the Classroom

Create flashcards to share with your students. Students can run them from a computer or download an app that can read the two column format of a spreadsheet to view on the go. All information for using the flashcards is explained in this resource. Use for any subject matter for any age. Challenge students to create their own flashcards to use to study for the big test! This tool can be used in ALL subject areas.

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Mugeda - mugeda.com

Grades
4 to 12
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Try this high interest animation tool without expensive programs, downloads, or installations. Mugeda is a free, cloud-based HTML5 animation platform, where you can create, share, and...more
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Try this high interest animation tool without expensive programs, downloads, or installations. Mugeda is a free, cloud-based HTML5 animation platform, where you can create, share, and publish HTML5 animation. Basic tutorials guide you to create content with easy to follow instructions. Animation applications include; games, ads, cartoons, tutorials, or persuasive commercials. Use tablets, PCs, smartphones, or tablets. Note that HTML5 works on iPads and iTouches, where most Flash-based sites do not.

tag(s): animation (63), comics and cartoons (74), DAT device agnostic tool (200)

In the Classroom

Bring along Mugeda in your bag of tricks to capture and intrigue all of your students. Use Mugeda to illustrate class content, support debate, persuade, and entertain. The possibilities are endless! Add the creations to your website to share with your community. Use on school news programs to add student content without cost, and make information available for all levels of student abilities. Create commercials for your content or to convey information. In history classes go back in time to envision popular opinion that made history happen. Use during campaigns to promote your side of the debate. Science fairs will never be the same. Highlight projects to create anticipation. Send messages to students using the embedded tool. This programming tool has applications in all subject areas. Gifted students, ELL/ESL students, and remedial students will be captivated by this high interest way of expressing themselves.

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Inside Story Flashcards - Inside Story, LLC

Grades
2 to 12
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Stunning pictures, audio of each word, and short definitions all make this online vocabulary flashcard site visually stimulating and interesting. As a bonus, you can print all cards....more
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Stunning pictures, audio of each word, and short definitions all make this online vocabulary flashcard site visually stimulating and interesting. As a bonus, you can print all cards. Choose from basic, easy, medium, or hard levels of vocabulary to find and listen to words. Definitions can also be turned off for practice with word recall or guessing what the image represents. When ready to print the cards, choose the print button; then select words for the flashcards (or all). There is a paid portion of the site for other flashcards, but the free printable section contains more than enough words to make this site worth a visit.

tag(s): dictionaries (56), flash cards (46), vocabulary (324), vocabulary development (126)

In the Classroom

Display the site on your interactive whiteboard (or projector), turn off the definition under the flashcard and have students try to guess the meaning of the word. Split students into teams to see who can come up with the most creative sentence using the vocabulary word. Print out cards on card stock to use at a writing center as a resource for writing. Print out cards and have students separate by nouns, verbs, adjectives, etc. Have a word of the day and challenge students to use the word correctly throughout the day in the classroom. Secondary teachers may want to share this site with students preparing for ACT/SAT testing.
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Box - Aaron Levie and Dylan Smith

Grades
4 to 12
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Save files to the cloud and access them on a variety of computers and devices. Download Box on the computers and devices you wish to use. Save a document in ...more
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Save files to the cloud and access them on a variety of computers and devices. Download Box on the computers and devices you wish to use. Save a document in Box and it is accessible everywhere you use it. Copy, save, or move the document simply and easily. Syncing and sharing is simple. No access to Internet at one of your locations? No problem! Your Box file stays in your Box account, and the next time you are online it will upload it for you. Share Box files with others for easy collaboration. Apps for Box are available (at the time of this review) for Windows, iOS, iPod touch, iPad, iPhone, Blackberry, and Android.
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tag(s): writing (359)

In the Classroom

Use for any work students may wish to collaborate on. They can easily make documents public or private and share with others through the tabs in the Account Settings. Though not a complete back up of all your documents, Box can be used to collaborate and to finish work easily when on different computers. Any item you can work with using Word can be used with Box. Teams of teachers can also use this download to save tests, share activities, and more.

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Reach Every Child - Horace Mann

Grades
K to 12
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This blog offers at least 12,000 free resources and has over 200 features for every kind of teacher. Find features about the latest classroom innovations, lesson plans, information...more
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This blog offers at least 12,000 free resources and has over 200 features for every kind of teacher. Find features about the latest classroom innovations, lesson plans, information about scholarships, contests, and awards, and much more. Guest bloggers cover different areas of education.

tag(s): blogs (88), printables (38)

In the Classroom

Share ideas from the blog with other teachers and use images for inspiration in your classroom. Print and use free resources from the site such as bulletin board ideas, lesson plans, and more. Post a link to this blog on the school's website for others on your campus to use.

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Power My Learning - CFY

Grades
K to 12
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Find practice and skill interactives for many grade levels at PowerMyLearning. This site collects learning games, videos, and other activities from around the web and presents them...more
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Find practice and skill interactives for many grade levels at PowerMyLearning. This site collects learning games, videos, and other activities from around the web and presents them via simple search so you can learn and practice concepts across many curriculum areas. The actual interactives and videos are created by other organizations and displayed within PowerMyLearning's colorful frame and subject/grade level organizational structure. Brief descriptions and keywording accompany activity listings. To view an activity on full screen and in a new tab/window (with its own url), click the "expand window" arrow in the top right corner. The site is designed for cooperative use by teachers, parents, and students and has been used successfully in schoolwide efforts to raise student achievement in targeted cities. To actually view any of the activities, you must join the free site. There are varied management options for students, teachers, and parents.

tag(s): operations (126)

In the Classroom

Set up a teacher account so you can offer a "playlist" for certain students who may need skills reinforcement. If you want to know more about some of the specific activities within PowerMyLearning, TeachersFirst most likely has a complete review of them. Search the name of the game or site using TeachersFirst's keyword search for our full review. PowerMyLearning offers lesson plans for some activities and invites you to contribute your own, if you wish.
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Picturing Words: The Power of Book Illustrations - Smithsonian Institution Libraries

Grades
6 to 10
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Picturing Words is an online exhibit featuring 40 illustrated, rare books from history, science, and art. The illustrated books go back to the 1400's with illuminated manuscripts from...more
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Picturing Words is an online exhibit featuring 40 illustrated, rare books from history, science, and art. The illustrated books go back to the 1400's with illuminated manuscripts from The Canon of Medicine (980-1037) up to 1996 and The Graphic Alphabet. The categories include: Inspires, Informs, or Influences. Also included is a section on the process of illustration, detailed images, and examples organized by theme. Suddenly, you will notice illustrations!

tag(s): artists (75), medieval (27), primary sources (86), renaissance (34)

In the Classroom

History and English teachers studying the Medieval time period can show the primary source of the illuminated alphabet script on The Canon of Medicine. Then have students create a mini-bio for themselves, starting with illuminating the first letter of their name. Use this site to study how the power of pictures can enhance text. The Process section explains how the Gutenberg Press used wood blocks or metal cuts along with the letterpress to print a book with images. Have your students view the "Process" part of this site, and look at several books printed in the Gutenberg time period. You may want them to further investigate the workings of the Gutenberg Press and what it took to make a book (materials and time). Then have your students make a simple, illustrated book using a program like Bookemon reviewed here. Have them use Dipity reviewed here. to display the differences between publishing then and now. Dipity will display as a flip book, timeline, map, or list. In a gifted class, try some of these activities as you discuss Gutenberg, then ask how those illustrations compare in ease and efficiency to the digital means we have to add visual enhancements today. WHich do they consider more "valuable"?

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Draw.io - JGraph, Ltd.

Grades
4 to 12
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Take a look at this online graphic organizer creator/drawing tool that requires NO membership. Although a bit "plain vanilla" in appearance, this is a wonderful tool! Research shows...more
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Take a look at this online graphic organizer creator/drawing tool that requires NO membership. Although a bit "plain vanilla" in appearance, this is a wonderful tool! Research shows that graphic organizers promote strong thinking skills and comprehension for all ages. Draw.io is a simple, free online tool for creating mind maps -- or diagrams for any purpose -- using shapes and arrows. Just drop and drag the shapes (or nodes) you want to the panel, connect the nodes by dragging the arrow, and double-click in the shape to add text. Use the simple toolbar at the top to insert images, change, bold, color and enlarge text, etc. Printing and exporting is also an option. If you click on the "Help" tab at the top, you will see "Video Tutorial" which uses flash. Draw.io uses JavaScript, not Flash, so it works on iOS devices.

tag(s): brainstorming (23), concept mapping (22), graphic organizers (43), mind map (25), venn diagrams (16), visual thinking (10)

In the Classroom

Demonstrate creating a mind map or other diagram on an interactive whiteboard or projector, and then allow students to try to create their own. Use this site for literature activities, research projects, social studies, or science topics of study. Use Draw.io to create family trees or flow charts. Learning support students could team up to map out the important concepts from a unit visually as a review activity. Use this mapping website as an alternative to a traditional test, quiz, or homework assignment in literature, social studies, or science. Have students demonstrate their understanding by creating a graphic organizer about the main points or map out a step-by-step process (life cycle). Be sure they name their organizer BEFORE they start work with their name --or code name-- so you know who did it (they could EMAIL it to you!) or have them print their results to turn them in. Anonymously share and compare different students' "views" of a unit so students can "see it through someone else's eyes."

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Super Thinkers - SuperPages.com

Grades
4 to 6
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SuperThinkers encourages you to become a thinker, not a memorizer. The goal of SuperThinkers is to teach how to think by creating connections, looking for meaning behind facts, and...more
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SuperThinkers encourages you to become a thinker, not a memorizer. The goal of SuperThinkers is to teach how to think by creating connections, looking for meaning behind facts, and analyzing to understand. Choose a game from the Peetnik Mysteries, watch a short video, then begin using information on the site to solve the mystery. In addition to games, the site includes a Creativity Workshop that features short online books with ideas for creating a book, making a movie, or making a jigsaw puzzle. Many of the mystery pages include an audio button that will read the text for you.

tag(s): creativity (109), logic (235), mysteries (25), patterns (85), problem solving (272)

In the Classroom

Use SuperThinkers as part of a larger mystery unit or as a reading activity to encourage logic, problem solving, critical thinking, cooperative learning, analysis, pattern interpretation, mystery solving, writing, observation, sharing, discovery, imagination, self determination, reflection, and self expression. The mysteries take about 30 minutes to solve and would be best utilized in a computer lab 1-1 setting or as a whole class with a projector (or interactive whiteboard). The Peetnik Mysteries can also be used to teach students how to create a time line, to compare and contrast, or as story starters.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Oxford Owl Reading - Oxford University Press

Grades
K to 6
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Find pre-reading and beginning reading help for the very youngest readers through the pre-teen years. From phonics lessons to online books to story videos read by professional story...more
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Find pre-reading and beginning reading help for the very youngest readers through the pre-teen years. From phonics lessons to online books to story videos read by professional story tellers, this site offers comprehensive reading help and activities for educators and parents. There are plenty of activities that accompany the free e-books. Many other activities encourage reading. On the e-book page are also suggestions for other similar or related books. In addition, a special section addresses the problem of reluctant male readers. Assistance for instructors is also available. Accompanying book lists are arranged by level of reader interest. Although the site has links to books for purchase, there is enough free material to warrant inclusion in your reading helps lists. British English speakers read the e-books, so be prepared for the difference in accents.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): independent reading (128), preK (281), reading lists (75), reading strategies (45)

In the Classroom

Use this site as an anticipatory set or "activator" to introduce one of the free online books on a projector or interactive whiteboard. Then encourage students to use it individually or in pairs. Refer your ESL/ELL and learning support students to this site for extra, assisted reading practice.
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