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Jigsaw Planet - Tibo Software

Grades
K to 12
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Create quick and simple custom jigsaw puzzles. Upload a jpeg image to the site. Choose how many pieces you want and the shape. Jigsaw Planet does the rest. Instantly create ...more
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Create quick and simple custom jigsaw puzzles. Upload a jpeg image to the site. Choose how many pieces you want and the shape. Jigsaw Planet does the rest. Instantly create a custom interactive puzzle for your students to play! Change the background using tools at the bottom of the puzzle. Puzzles can be saved for your own account, shared with students via a url, or embedded into your classroom website for easy access. This site requires Java.

tag(s): images (275), puzzles (207)

In the Classroom

Use these puzzles on your projector or interactive whiteboard! Each puzzle is timed as you put it together. Split students into teams to see which team can complete the puzzle the fastest. Instead of the typical PowerPoint type presentation to teach students facts, create a puzzle for them to put together and have them read the fact once the puzzle has been completed. Turn your classroom rules into a series of jigsaw puzzles for students to put together. Honor your star student of the week by creating a puzzle of that student. Just take a picture of the student and upload to Jigsaw Planet. Students can use Jigsaw Planet to create their own puzzles. This is a great place for them to study. They can upload spelling words, math facts, maps, etc. Students will love creating their own jigsaw puzzles. If you have a projector or an interactive whiteboard, have students create a puzzle all about them. They can create a collage of things they like in a presentation program, take a screen shot of it, and upload the puzzle to Jigsaw Planet. Students can put together each other's puzzles and guess who the student is based on the pictures. This would be a great getting to know you activity for the first week of school!

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LearnClick: Create Gap-Filling Exercises - Learnclick

Grades
4 to 12
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Create interactive online activities quickly and easily with LearnClick's Create a Gap. Submit any text you'd like to learn and mark the text you want deleted for a fill-in-the-blank...more
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Create interactive online activities quickly and easily with LearnClick's Create a Gap. Submit any text you'd like to learn and mark the text you want deleted for a fill-in-the-blank type of activity. Easily create quizzes or tests for individualized students or your entire class. Create a free account with your email. Follow the simple steps to create tests in minutes with varying options for response style choices; blank boxes, generated drop downs, or drag and drop. Search the quiz bank to save time. The free version allows you to make up to five quizzes, which are published on your public page. Your public page allows a direct link to your quizzes.

tag(s): quiz (88), quizzes (100)

In the Classroom

In the classroom, use as a review tool on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Assign as homework for a study aid. Create study aids for ELL/ESL, or learning support students to review and learn with a "techie twist." Let students take control! Have students create the tests, in order to find the main idea or quiz each other. Use in centers for a fun review of current vocabulary, concepts, or even mathematical practice. Divide the class into cooperative learning groups to cover all aspects of one topic. The subject areas are limitless. Use as a "Jeopardy" style competition. Post on your website as a resource for parents to help their students keep motivated to study in a fun way!

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NetVibes - NetVibes.com

Grades
6 to 12
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Create a personalized dashboard that pulls together feeds and tools into one place -- for any topic. Optional registration allows access to updated information at anytime. This tool...more
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Create a personalized dashboard that pulls together feeds and tools into one place -- for any topic. Optional registration allows access to updated information at anytime. This tool has power as s simple resource collector "on the fly" or as a customizable way to monitor many tools from one place. Creation of multiple dashboards requires an email address and password or Facebook sign-in. Use it the simple way by typing in any topic into the search bar; wait a few seconds while information is compiled then explore the results. Results are posted in widgets that can be moved around to personalize the dashboard as needed. A wizard will walk you through it if you wish. Tabs are also included that separate news items, videos, conversations, and more. View pages in reader format or with widgets by choosing from options at the top of the page. You can copy the url of a basic topic dashboard to access over and over. Signing in on a free account allows you to customize and save your dashboards and harness the real power to pull everything into one place.

In the Classroom

Demonstrate the power and uses of this site on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) with students to use as a resource for gathering research information. For example, create a dashboard on an environmental ("oil spill") or political topic. Gather current events from multiple sources into one place. Set up a dashboard on earthquakes or weather during science units so students can connect real world information with curriculum. Use this site for group projects, have team members work together to gather information, then share using a tool such as Crocodoc reviewed here. As a professional tool, create a dashboard for monitoring feeds from student activity on multiple web-based tools at a time (wikis, blogs, etc.). You can also create a dashboard on professional topics to keep yourself well informed.

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AnswerBag - Joel Downs

Grades
8 to 12
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Answerbag is a collaborative online database where questions are asked and answered by you. Search through questions using categories such as arts, education, science, and more. Responses...more
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Answerbag is a collaborative online database where questions are asked and answered by you. Search through questions using categories such as arts, education, science, and more. Responses are posted in order of ratings. Email registration is required to post and answer questions. An optional poll can be added to each question. Share questions using links to email share, Facebook, Twitter, and many other share tools. Warning: if you are using questions from their database, be aware, questions may update frequently so it is a good idea to take a look immediately before sharing in front of young people.

tag(s): polls and surveys (54), questioning (33)

In the Classroom

Post a question as a homework assignment for student response using a specific url directly to that question. Challenge cooperative learning groups to create their own questions. Search for interesting questions already posted to use as a discussion/debate starter. You may want to preview the questions before using in the classroom as posts can sometimes contain language or content not appropriate for the classroom. Monitor use by using a whole class account to submit questions.

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ShowMe - The Online Learning Community - San Kim and Karen Bdoyan

Grades
K to 12
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ShowMe is an open learning community where you can learn or teach any subject. Explore topics such as math, science, world languages, social studies, art, and more. Explore the links...more
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ShowMe is an open learning community where you can learn or teach any subject. Explore topics such as math, science, world languages, social studies, art, and more. Explore the links on the home page or search for a topic with the search bar at the top of the page. Results are divided into subtopics and can be sorted by featured, popular, or recent videos. High school teachers may be especially interested in the ShowMe SAT offerings available through a link at the bottom of each page. Creating a ShowMe of your own requires a download of the app from the iTunes store (and an iPad). The download is free. If you are worried about students seeing questionable material, you may want to provide the link directly to the video you wish students to view. At the time of this review, all material appeared appropriate. Although it is not available yet, Showme hopes to offer an Android version of the app, as well.

tag(s): test prep (96), tutorials (49), video (275)

In the Classroom

Share the site (or individual videos) with your students to access at home for homework help using the Facebook, Twitter, email, or embed link on each video. List the ShowMe link on your class website. View tutorials on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) as a whole class. Encourage students to share links to specific videos they find helpful on a "Video Reviews" page of your class wiki. For a very real challenge, have students create their own simple review videos using the ShowMe app on iPads (if available) then embed them on your class wiki for a year-to-year student-made study guide! For examples of sophisticated topics simplified in whiteboard stick figure videos, see Common Craft, reviewed here.

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Vokle - Robert Kiraz

Grades
6 to 12
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Vokle allows you and others to connect through an interactive video conference format. There are three main components to the program: text chat, audio, and video. Registration is required...more
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Vokle allows you and others to connect through an interactive video conference format. There are three main components to the program: text chat, audio, and video. Registration is required to host an "event" but isn't necessary for viewing recorded events available on the site. After registering, create an event (or series) by providing a title, description, and category. Schedule an event for a future time or go live immediately. Invite others to the event by embedding the code on your website, Facebook page, Twitter link, or by sharing the url. Encourage participation through viewer comments and questions that can be screened and chosen by the host. Sessions are recorded and can be viewed at a later time making this very useful for the classroom. Search for sessions by browsing events and viewing available categories. The learning category may be a useful starting point.

tag(s): chat (53), video (275)

In the Classroom

This site would be perfect to use when collaborating with other classrooms, for holding an author visit, or for professional collaboration. After hosting an event, share the link with students (or parents) who could not attend or who want to watch it over again. Encourage students to host their own event with topics such as book talks, interactive discussions on solving difficult math problems, or discussions of current events. Create a Vokle for parents to view, sharing your educational philosophy, classroom procedures and expectations, and other school-related information. Create a Vokle for students who were absent from class or who may want to watch the lesson again. Even elementary classes can make a Vokle under teacher supervision for special events such as Earth Day or the 100th day of school.

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Critical Past Stock Footage Archive - Jim and Andy Erickson

Grades
6 to 12
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Critical Past offers a collection of more than 57,000 historical videos and more than 7 million historical photos. All of the photos and videos are royalty free, archival stock footage....more
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Critical Past offers a collection of more than 57,000 historical videos and more than 7 million historical photos. All of the photos and videos are royalty free, archival stock footage. The site is in the business of selling these images and clips. "Royalty free" means that purchasing an image/clip will not require additional fees to the photographer, but it does NOT mean that the images/clips are "free" to download and use at will. Most of the footage comes from U.S. Government Agency sources. All of the videos and photos can be viewed for free online and shared with others via url, Twitter, or Facebook. Search the site either by decade, topic, or keyword. Along the right side bar of Critical Past, you will find "related videos" that correlate to the current search.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): 20th century (53), afghanistan (7), africa (175), american revolution (89), china (67), europe (74), north america (18), south america (38), video (275)

In the Classroom

Use photos or videos on Critical Past to help illustrate what students are learning in history. Ask students to be "eyewitnesses" of history and watch a video before they have context for it. Students can write or blog about what they think they are witnessing. Afterward they can research the event in more depth and write a follow-up reflection on what was actually happening in the clip. Challenge your students to use a site such as Timetoast reviewed here to create timelines of topics researched on the site. Use images from public domain sites, such as the collections reviewed here, to illustrate the events.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Genographic Project - National Geographic Society

Grades
8 to 12
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This tool provides videos, interactives, and lesson plans to understand the genetics of humans and to explain migration, genetic markers, and more. Use these lessons to understand more...more
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This tool provides videos, interactives, and lesson plans to understand the genetics of humans and to explain migration, genetic markers, and more. Use these lessons to understand more about genetics across many disciplines. Suggested test kits are not required for the activities, though they might add interest if your school permits.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): genealogy (7), genetics (95)

In the Classroom

Bring many genetic topics to light and answer the question "Where do I come from?" The lesson plans are an important means to understand the scientific, political, and social impact of how we are all interconnected.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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NASA eClips - NASA

Grades
K to 12
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This NASA site showcases vast educational resources. eClips videos are arranged by grade level: K-5, 6-8, and 9-12. Be sure to check out the general public section. The short video...more
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This NASA site showcases vast educational resources. eClips videos are arranged by grade level: K-5, 6-8, and 9-12. Be sure to check out the general public section. The short video clips are designed to showcase NASA work and its importance and impact on everyday life here on Earth. The clip lengths make them perfect for classroom use or for young people to view on their own. Each age range has a different focus. K-5 videos show students how NASA research provides information about the Earth and our solar system. 6-8 videos focus on real-world problem solving. Problem solving is the central theme for 9-12 videos. View the videos online or download onto a computer. The entire eClips library is also available on YouTube here for those who want to use YouTube tools with the videos. There is closed captioning available from the CC button on all the videos.

tag(s): earth (231), nasa (39), problem solving (278), solar system (121), space (217), STEM (156)

In the Classroom

Find viewing guides and project ideas to use in the classroom. Use the YouTube versions to embed a video in your class wiki and have students respond to questions there. As a STEM career exploration, have students watch a video of their choice and write a plan for how they might become a scientist involved in such a project.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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BioMedia - BioMEDIA Associates, LLC

Grades
7 to 12
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This site features unbelievable microscope images and videos to engage you in tiny life you cannot see with your eye alone. Though a commercial site that actually sells images and ...more
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This site features unbelievable microscope images and videos to engage you in tiny life you cannot see with your eye alone. Though a commercial site that actually sells images and footage, several tabs are worth a close look. The "Micronaturalist Notebook" tells a story about the organisms with detailed and labeled pictures. Use the information to learn about the intricacies of microscopic life. Find specific organisms in the "Biogalleries." Many of the pictures showcase the larva and the adult forms of these organisms.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): animals (291), microorganisms (15), microscopes (13)

In the Classroom

Use these organisms to discuss various Phyla or Classes of organisms to identify the similarity and differences among them. Use the Micronaturalist Notebook as a template for students to create information pages about what they see in their class lab. Create pages on a blog, wiki, or site to share with others. Use these images on an Interactive Whiteboard (or projector) and make them larger than life! Ask stimulating questions such as "How do these organisms show that they are indeed living?" or "Which of these organisms are most like another?" Share the responses to identify the characteristics of living things or discuss the similarity of structure and function among them.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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VocabAhead Vocabulary Videos - VocabAhead Team

Grades
9 to 12
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Use VocabAhead in your classroom for teaching SAT and ACT vocabulary words (or simply to build vocabulary). This free vocabulary building system offers vocabulary videos, searchable...more
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Use VocabAhead in your classroom for teaching SAT and ACT vocabulary words (or simply to build vocabulary). This free vocabulary building system offers vocabulary videos, searchable by beginning letter of the word. You can also create your own word lists, share your lists with students, use flash cards for quick review, and test yourself by taking the online quizzes. You will welcome the fresh perspectives and interactive learning activities for teaching and practicing ACT and SAT words.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): vocabulary (325), vocabulary development (125)

In the Classroom

Project this vocabulary website on your classroom whiteboard or projector and share a few quick ready-made vocabulary videos. They are quick, fun, and memorable. They also provide a way to associate words and make the definitions stick. This will especially have value for visual learners and ESL/ELL students. Use the easy to navigate, alphabetized word lists as they appear on the website, or create your own sets from the lists for assignments. Sign up to receive the Word of the Day. Share the link to this site on your web page for students to access at home. Let your students create their own vocabulary videos to share with your class. Share the videos using a site such as TeacherTube reviewed here.

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Spreeder - 7-Speed-Reading

Grades
7 to 12
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Learn to read at a faster pace with much better reading comprehension using Spreeder, a free online speed reading service. Use passages of your choice by simply loading (or copy ...more
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Learn to read at a faster pace with much better reading comprehension using Spreeder, a free online speed reading service. Use passages of your choice by simply loading (or copy and paste) the text, and Spreeder will pace through it at a speed you set. You can adjust your speed as your reading comprehension increases. There is also a feature to increase "chunk" size, an effective strategy used in reading instruction. Get the free app for Chrome or use the practice box on the site. There is a paid "training" portion for this tool. This review is only for the free portion.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): reading comprehension (119), test prep (96)

In the Classroom

In this era of high-stakes testing, it is imperative that students be able to read and comprehend at an expected rate in order to complete the tasks within the designated time. Think about the implications for improving state test scores and PSAT or SAT college entrance exams! Demonstrate Spreeder on your classroom projector or interactive whiteboard by copying and pasting practice passages from your state's Department of Education link to state testing. Link to SAT practice sites such as College Board SAT Preparation Center, reviewed here, or Test Prep Review, reviewed here. Provide opportunities for students to try it on individual classroom computers. Provide a direct link to Spreeder from your classroom web page or wiki. This will enable motivated students to take charge of increasing their own reading speed, or you may want to incorporate it with homework assignments and make parents aware of it.

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101 Questions - Dan Myer

Grades
2 to 12
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At 101 Questions, look at the image or video, and then write a question for the picture. The question can only be 140 characters total. You can also click to ...more
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At 101 Questions, look at the image or video, and then write a question for the picture. The question can only be 140 characters total. You can also click to skip a picture. Submit your own picture or video, and get points for the perplexity it inspires, or even join the top 10 lists. Save images to your favorites and classify by tags using your membership. Note that the public can participate so some responses may not be appropriate for younger viewers. Preview and monitor or have an adult operate the site together.

tag(s): creative writing (171), creativity (120), images (275), writing prompts (94)

In the Classroom

Creative fluency begins here! Set up a whole class account. Use this site in language arts: discover main idea, details, cause and effect, or even an inspirational writing prompt. Find ways to group images together based on characteristics or attributes. Use in gifted or enrichment situations, for inspiration for problem-based learning. Sequence the images to find ways to form a logical plot. Find ways to make Perplexors out of the given image. In math, write short word problems to accompany images or videos. Find ways to illustrate vocabulary definitions with examples and non-examples. As a morning work challenge, find questions, details, or even other questions. As a writing challenge, look for the image that conveys the mood or feeling you are trying to convey. In science, submit examples to illustrate scientific concepts. Use to generate scientific method style questions based on the given image. In social studies, find images to convey feelings represented by the time being studied. Challenge students to make a historical statement or political statement by finding and adding to an appropriate image. ESL/ELL students can use this site to help acquire conversation/questioning skills. In world language class, have students generate questions in their new language, even if they do not post them. In art, find mood, theme, style, or self expression images. Be sure to monitor the blog content. Put similar content on your own classroom blog. Challenge students to create their own 101 question images or videos to share on your class blog, inviting viewers to respond with questions in the comments.

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ThinkExist - Harold S. Geneen

Grades
4 to 12
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ThinkExist is a Quotation Search Engine and Directory with over 300,000 quotations by over 20,000 authors in the English language. Find quotes by author, topic, keywords, or contributors....more
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ThinkExist is a Quotation Search Engine and Directory with over 300,000 quotations by over 20,000 authors in the English language. Find quotes by author, topic, keywords, or contributors. Narrow your search by subtopics such as nationality or theme such as love or wisdom. Membership to the site isn't required to find and share quotes; however, registration with email allows you to save favorite quotes, receive a quote of the day email, and become a contributor. This site does include significant advertisements that seem to adjust depending on what you search. Preview and monitor young people suing the site. Depending on what search terms they enter, the ads may not be "student appropriate."
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): famous people (21), quotations (25), search engines (64), writing prompts (94)

In the Classroom

Use the site to have a quote of the day (or week) for your interactive whiteboard or projector. Share the site with students to use when in need of a quote for classroom projects. FInd writing prompt quotes based on a search term. In literature or social studies classes, look at the list of quotes by an author or famous person. Invite students to create online posters (or traditional bulletin boards) about the author/person using selected quotes. Use an online poster creator, such as Padlet (reviewed here).

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Pomodoro Timer - Ryhan Hassan

Grades
3 to 12
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Manage time more effectively using this online timer that reflects the Pomodoro time management technique. Based on the belief that proper time management and use of materials will...more
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Manage time more effectively using this online timer that reflects the Pomodoro time management technique. Based on the belief that proper time management and use of materials will increase productivity, this timer is set for 25 minutes. This allows for a 5 minute rest period before restarting the activity. Click start and the timer counts back from 25 minutes with a digital display and timeline bar.

tag(s): organizational skills (127), time (141)

In the Classroom

Display the timer on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) to encourage students to maintain focus and put forth effort for 25 minutes with the understanding that a break will follow. Challenge older students to research the Pomodoro time management method and share other time-management techniques.

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Rich Chart Live - Blue Pacific Software

Grades
8 to 12
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Rich Chart Live is an online chart creator that instantly creates Flash charts (and other formats) that can be easily shared. Choose a template from the many options. Begin adding ...more
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Rich Chart Live is an online chart creator that instantly creates Flash charts (and other formats) that can be easily shared. Choose a template from the many options. Begin adding data, style choices, color options, and layout. An animation option is available to apply to the chart's axes and elements and can be customized with speed options. When finished, click Publish. Charts can be opened in a new page, saved to a PowerPoint, or embedded into a blog via copy and paste. You can also "drag and drop" the link to the char onto your desktop (and thus get its url). Opening the link in "free mode" asks for an email address first, but even abc@123.com works.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): charts and graphs (196), data (153)

In the Classroom

Create colorful and interactive charts on the fly at anytime by using this website. Display the website on your interactive whiteboard (or projector). Watch charts change by using different inputs and customization options. Challenge students to predict and draw what charts will look like before changes are applied. Use the site to compare and contrast different ways to present information and discuss styles that work best in different situations. Create a class wiki and embed different examples of charts with explanations of how the chart was created. Have student use the discussion on the wiki to explain what the chart tells them. Not comfortable with wikis? Have no wiki worries - check out the TeachersFirst Wiki Walk-Through.

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Photoshop Express Online - 2012 Adobe Systems

Grades
6 to 12
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Photoshop Express Online is a free online storage site for all of your digital photos. Upload, edit, and organize your own library with 2GB of free storage. Create your own ...more
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Photoshop Express Online is a free online storage site for all of your digital photos. Upload, edit, and organize your own library with 2GB of free storage. Create your own personalized homepage that can be private or shared with friends. Find online tutorials such as; Light, Color, and Composition, Envisioning Improbable Realities, Keeping Ideas Fresh, and Combining Artistic Mediums. Submit questions or join the blog, After photo editing, add a description, or share with friends and family. Fill out a profile to get notifications of the latest products (NOT free).
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): images (275), photography (161)

In the Classroom

Find plenty of room for all of your classes photos! Edit the photos to create quality prints. Organize into libraries to share with students and parents. Have a library for every class, assignment, every year, or yearbooks. In lower grades, set up a teacher account for the whole class. Communicate with parents, pen pals, or with collaborations between schools. In art classes, look at the possibilities of quality photography. In upper grade technology classes, create free galleries for each student (over 13), and highlight some of the latest photo editing software and apps. Use in science classes as a way to store data in digital images. In language arts, create stories through photos or make wordless picture books. Store student portfolios in digital format in your gallery. Journal throughout your school year in pictures.

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Edublog - Edublogs.org

Grades
K to 12
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Blog your way into the latest social technology using Edublogs. Use the free service to set up a blog as a student, teacher, or campus. This education friendly tool avoids ...more
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Blog your way into the latest social technology using Edublogs. Use the free service to set up a blog as a student, teacher, or campus. This education friendly tool avoids some of the "public interaction" that can offer inappropriate content. Upgrade to more advanced features, to include more options. The additional information on blogging makes this site very valuable even if you already have a blogging platform. Find a plethora of advice, tutorials, pdfs, and lesson plans for blogging. This site is a great reference site for all who are beginning to use blogs, or even look for more varied and effective ways to log with students, or even other classes. Compare this tool to other free blogging tools mentioned in TeachersFirst's Blog Basics for the Classroom . This is a device-agnostic tool, available on the web but also available for free as both an Android and iOS app. Use it from any device or move between several devices and still access your work. App and web versions vary slightly.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): blogs (85), DAT device agnostic tool (173)

In the Classroom

Save this site as a favorite for all of your blogging needs. Find very informative instructions on blogging, and follow the student blogging challenge lesson plans. ) Use this tool easily in your Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) classroom since all students will be able to access it for free, no matter what device they have. Peruse through the various subjects and discover how other teachers use blogging in their classrooms. Using the given PDFs on blogging start up, parent guidelines, incorporating into subject areas, and adapt to make them suitable for you. Look at a variety of examples to help devise your own unique style to meet your students' needs.

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In-sites to Einstein - Jen Farr

Grades
7 to 12
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Find everything you would want to know about Einstein on this cool site! Read information such as a bibliography, his work and contributions, specific information about his theories,...more
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Find everything you would want to know about Einstein on this cool site! Read information such as a bibliography, his work and contributions, specific information about his theories, and even quotes he has made. A vast array of sites is listed in each section, and much of the information is actually located elsewhere on the web.

tag(s): inventors and inventions (96), scientists (70)

In the Classroom

Have groups of students spend time perusing the topics and taking time to collect information. Share information learned with other members of the class to get a great background on the life and works of Einstein. Use to understand the theories he developed and discuss the difference between laws and theories. Have students (or groups) explore a specific part of this site and write a blog post about what they learn. If you are beginning the process of integrating technology, have students create blogs sharing their learning and understanding using Pen.io, reviewed here. This blog creator requires no registration. Use this site as part of a unit for the gifted on Great Minds.

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Cellular Visions - Harvard University

Grades
9 to 12
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Find great videos of animations (including narration) of the inner life of the cell, the mitochondria, and other topics. Each video opens in a new window, and the web address ...more
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Find great videos of animations (including narration) of the inner life of the cell, the mitochondria, and other topics. Each video opens in a new window, and the web address can be copied to be shared on a blog, wiki, or website. The inner life videos also can be found without audio. Some of the videos require Flash; others require QuickTime.

tag(s): cells (105)

In the Classroom

Use the animations without audio as an introduction to cell biology. Allow time for students to note what they observe and to guess which cell parts that these may be. Show the video with audio to marvel at what we now know about the internal working of the cell and the cell parts. Follow the video with activities that allow for modeling of the cell on a larger scale to learn the parts.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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