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Project BudBurst - Chicago Botanic Garden

Grades
K to 12
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Collect data about plants, learn about climate change, and participate by posting your findings for both with Project Budburst. Join Project Budburst and become part of a community...more
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Collect data about plants, learn about climate change, and participate by posting your findings for both with Project Budburst. Join Project Budburst and become part of a community of citizen scientists! Record the observations of first leafing, first flower, etc. (especially for native plant species), and have them reported to a national database. Under the education tab at the top find a grade level (K-12, Informal Education, Higher Education, Buddies, and more). For K-12 there are lists for National Science Education Standards (NSES) and Common Core Standards for English Language Arts and Mathematics. Under each level find helpful guides for using the site, supplemental activities, and videos. There is no need to register to enjoy these features. However, registration allows for reporting data and becoming a citizen scientist. If your district blocks YouTube, the videos may not be viewable. You could always view them at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as Freemake Video Converter, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): environment (323), plants (159), scientific method (66)

In the Classroom

Bring your science class to life and the "real world" for students using Project BudBurst's free resources. Captivate student interest by having them discover the importance of nature and our interactions with it. Participants must be 13 years of age to set up an account. Be sure to click the "I am an Educator" option to facilitate the participation of younger students, by creating a teacher account. Younger students do not require an email or personal information this way. Add to the growing database and document plant phenology as seen in your area. As you discuss various types of plants, assign students to take pictures of the stages observed, make observations about the stages, and create an infographic sharing their findings using Canva Infographic Creator, reviewed here.

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Educators Guides to Lyme Disease - Bay Area Lyme Foundation

Grades
3 to 8
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This site offers a free mini-unit on tick bite prevention and Lyme disease. Download the teacher overview (correlated to Next Generation Science Standards), PowerPoint, and student...more
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This site offers a free mini-unit on tick bite prevention and Lyme disease. Download the teacher overview (correlated to Next Generation Science Standards), PowerPoint, and student packet for use in any classroom. The full-color presentations include easy to understand information and activities including a graph, crossword puzzle, wordsearch, fill-in-the-blank worksheet, and a design your own brochure assignment.

tag(s): diseases (74), insects (72)

In the Classroom

Explore these free materials when teaching about insects or disease. Are you integrating technology in your class? Instead of the traditional brochure suggested use Lucidpress, reviewed here. As a follow-up, you could assign students to investigate and create reports on other insect-born diseases, then use Flipsnack, reviewed here, to turn their Word documents, PDFs, and images into an online book. Have students create an annotated image describing ticks and Lyme disease including text boxes and related links using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here.
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OK2Ask: Getting Started with Google Draw - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional development session from May 2017, opens in Adobe Connect. Learn how to make interactive lessons and activities with ease using the drawing...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional development session from May 2017, opens in Adobe Connect. Learn how to make interactive lessons and activities with ease using the drawing tools and sharing ability of Google Draw. Learn how to navigate through Google Draw to make engaging lessons, interactive graphic organizers, exciting assignments and much more. With the amazing sharing abilities within Google, it is easy to share information with students and colleagues and work toward a more paperless classroom. This session is appropriate for teachers at all technology levels. As a result of this session teachers will: 1. Learn the basics of creating in Google Draw; 2. Explore examples of ways to integrate Google Draw into the classroom; 3. Create a Google Drawing that you can use; and 4. Plan for the use of Google Draw in the classroom.

tag(s): drawing (83), Google (25)

In the Classroom

The archive of this teacher-friendly, hands-on webinar will empower and inspire you to use learning technology in the classroom and for professional productivity. As appropriate, specific classroom examples and ideas have been shared. View the session with a few of your teaching colleagues to find and share new ideas. Find additional information and links to tools at the session resource page. Learn more about OK2Ask and upcoming sessions here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Makerspaces - Andrew Miller

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K to 12
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Makerspaces is a resource created to help schools and libraries learn about, build, and run makerspaces. Choose the Maker Projects link to find many project ideas including tutorials...more
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Makerspaces is a resource created to help schools and libraries learn about, build, and run makerspaces. Choose the Maker Projects link to find many project ideas including tutorials that incorporate tools such as 3D printers and circuits. Download a free ebook with over 250 resources for any makerspace program. Find out what others are doing with makerspaces by choosing the Makerspace tab, this includes tweets from makerspace users, project ideas, and a showcase of makerspaces in action. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable. You could always view them at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as Freemake Video Converter, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): crafts (43), inquiry (35), makerspace (8), STEM (167)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of the many ideas and tutorials found on this site when creating a makerspace in your classroom or school. Collaborate with peers to create different makerspaces within your classroom communities. Ask parent volunteers to help teach students about circuits and other technology used in your makerspace.
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Paper Circuits for Makerspaces - Andrew Miller

Grades
4 to 12
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Paper Circuits for Makerspaces provides many tutorials and ideas for creating paper circuits for teaching electricity and circuits. Scroll through the page to find many examples of...more
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Paper Circuits for Makerspaces provides many tutorials and ideas for creating paper circuits for teaching electricity and circuits. Scroll through the page to find many examples of paper circuits created in classrooms and complete tutorials. Also included on this page is a linked list of resources for buying materials needed to make circuits. Be sure to click on the ebook link for a free download with over 250 resources for your makerspace program. If your district blocks YouTube, the videos may not be viewable. You could always view them at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as Freemake Video Converter, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): circuits (21), crafts (43), creativity (121), electricity (89), engineering (129), makerspace (8), STEM (167)

In the Classroom

Paper Circuits for MakerSpaces is perfect for use with an after-school science program or as a resource for science fair projects. Create a center throughout the school year for students to work on circuits and build skills at an individual level. If you don't feel comfortable working on this topic, find a parent volunteer to help, or partner with another classroom to work together. Need funding to buy materials? See GetEdFunding, reviewed here, to write for a small grant.
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Wind Energy Virtual Lab - 3M and Discovery Education

Grades
6 to 12
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Your challenge at the Wind Energy Virtual Lab is to build a high efficiency, low-cost turbine supplying energy to 400 homes. Follow the steps to choose the appropriate location, design,...more
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Your challenge at the Wind Energy Virtual Lab is to build a high efficiency, low-cost turbine supplying energy to 400 homes. Follow the steps to choose the appropriate location, design, and material for your turbine and view the results. When finished, the lab displays up to three design attempts for comparison of outputs. Be sure to download the Teacher's Guide including explanations of the different lab components and ideas for classroom use.

tag(s): conservation (130), energy (205), weather (195)

In the Classroom

Share the Wind Energy Virtual Lab on an interactive whiteboard or with a projector. Then let students explore and design turbines on their own. Ask them to take a screen shot of three designs and compare the results. Have them discuss their findings on a podcast using a site such as podOmatic, reviewed here. Have students create a simple infographic sharing their findings using Easel.ly, reviewed here.
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World of 7 Billion - Population Connection

Grades
6 to 12
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World of 7 Billion provides a broad variety of resources and information for teaching about world population. Discover the ever changing world and United State's current population...more
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World of 7 Billion provides a broad variety of resources and information for teaching about world population. Discover the ever changing world and United State's current population count near the top of each page. Explore the Teachers Resources for activities to use with middle and high school students. Encourage students to participate in the annual video challenge contest sponsored by the site highlighting different global challenges with prizes up to $1,000.

tag(s): conservation (130), environment (323), population (63)

In the Classroom

Encourage students to take part in World of 7 Billion's annual video contest. Benefit from the free lessons for middle and high school students as well as the ideas for school-wide events. Provide time for students to browse through the site and to generate questions about it. Brainstorm not only questions but what students learned from it. Allow groups time to research the economic and social issues that have caused such a change in population and how people live. Challenge students to create a presentation with their findings using Prezi, reviewed here. Have students use a mapping tool such as Zeemaps, reviewed here, to create a map of population changes around the world (with audio stories and pictures included)!
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Free School - YouTube Channel - FreeSchool

Grades
K to 8
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FreeSchool, a YouTube Channel, provides an extensive selection of educational videos and adds two new videos each week. Videos provide content in art, music, science, literature, and...more
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FreeSchool, a YouTube Channel, provides an extensive selection of educational videos and adds two new videos each week. Videos provide content in art, music, science, literature, and more. Browse through the site to find content or choose the playlists to find videos by specific topics. Most videos run less than 10 minutes in length making them perfect for use in many situations. If your district blocks YouTube, the videos may not be viewable. You could always view them at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as Freemake Video Converter, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): angles (85), animals (297), biographies (91), fractions (225), grammar (210), literature (273), martin luther king (36), planets (127), punctuation (43), scientific method (66), space (221), states (165), weather (195)

In the Classroom

Use as a way to introduce new topics or subjects to establish background knowledge. Share these videos on your projector or interactive whiteboard to provide an introduction (or review) on various topics. If you allow students to explore on their own, take caution since they could click and go elsewhere on YouTube. Share a link to this site with parents through your classroom website or newsletter for students to view at home.

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Microsoft Educator Community - Microsoft

Grades
K to 12
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Welcome to the Microsoft Educator Community! This extensive network of educators is the place to find lessons, collaborate with fellow teachers, and earn badges and certificates through...more
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Welcome to the Microsoft Educator Community! This extensive network of educators is the place to find lessons, collaborate with fellow teachers, and earn badges and certificates through training courses. Register for virtual field trips from across the globe with exciting partners such as an elephant sanctuary or climbers hiking up Mount Everest. Sign into your account to add lessons as favorites or upload your lessons to share with the community.

tag(s): collaboration (17), PLN (8), preK (294), professional development (162), skype (13), virtual field trips (51)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of the many resources on the site for use in your classroom and to share with peers. Find partners for Skype lessons, participate in virtual field trips, and download lessons for use. Watch tutorials to learn how to use Microsoft Tools such as OneNote, Sway, and others with your students. Enroll in the online courses for personal learning in many topics or share with others in your building and learn together. Earn badges and points and become a Microsoft Innovative Educator. Include all courses as part of any professional development plan.
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The Great Fire of London - Museum of London

Grades
6 to 12
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Learn all about The Great Fire of London that took place in 1666 through gameplay, a Minecraft experience, and an extensive website explaining events from several different perspectives....more
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Learn all about The Great Fire of London that took place in 1666 through gameplay, a Minecraft experience, and an extensive website explaining events from several different perspectives. The game unfolds through six chapters beginning with the fire through the last day and the beginning of rebuilding. The Minecraft experience offers players the ability to enter maps as they dig deeper into the experience of The Great Fire. Explore the website's interactive timeline to understand the unfurling of events while clicking on icons to learn more about specific circumstances and documents of the time. The site was created in the UK, so some of the pronunciations and spellings may differ from those in American English.

tag(s): 1600s (14), england (54), fire (27), fire prevention (11), fire safety (12), game based learning (126), gamification (81), great britain (17)

In the Classroom

This site is perfect for use on an interactive whiteboard (or with a projector) to understand the background and impact of the Great Fire of London as well as what life was like in 1666. Include this as part of any study of this period of time in Europe. Share this site during fire prevention week as an example of how society has learned about the dangers of fire and adapted building safety throughout time. Allow students to explore the site independently or in small groups, then compare and contrast life in London then to modern life. Have students create a multimedia presentation using Voicethread, reviewed here, to share their findings. This site allows users to narrate a picture. Challenge students to find a photo (legally permitted to be reproduced), and then narrate the photo as if it is a news report.

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Infographic Portal - infographicportal.com

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K to 12
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Infographic Portal offers an extensive collection of infographics sub-divided into several categories. In addition to viewing infographics on the site, under Infographic Designers,...more
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Infographic Portal offers an extensive collection of infographics sub-divided into several categories. In addition to viewing infographics on the site, under Infographic Designers, see design tips, and then submit original designs for inclusion on the site. Choose categories from topics listed at the top of the website with an orange background. Infographics in the education section include titles such as Verb Grammar Rules: Your Complete Handbook and A Typical School Week Around the World. Be sure to review the site before sharing with students, some images may not be suitable for all ages or school-appropriate.

tag(s): digital storytelling (151), infographics (47), professional development (162)

In the Classroom

Click on any infographic link to see it in full along with additional information including the image source and a link to download and save to your computer. Take advantage of the infographics on this site for both classroom use and professional development. Introduce a topic by sharing the Infographic and allowing time for students (or peers) to identify various items they notice about the chart. Allow students the chance to think-pair-share and list questions for further understanding. Choose a new infographic each week to share on your classroom website. Make curriculum content more real with infographics students can relate to. Consider creating Infographics of material students are learning in class for better understanding and connection with other topics and the world around them. Have students create a simple infographic sharing their findings using Piktochart, reviewed here.

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OK2Ask: Free Microsoft Tools to Ignite Student Engagement and Increase Productivity! - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional development session from May 2017, opens in Adobe Connect. Who doesn't love free tools? Come join us as we take a look at ...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional development session from May 2017, opens in Adobe Connect. Who doesn't love free tools? Come join us as we take a look at some of Microsoft's top free tools for empowering teachers and students and making learning fun. Learn how these tools can be used across the curriculum to increase productivity and student engagement. This session is appropriate for teachers at all technology levels. As a result of this session teachers will: 1. Increase awareness of top Microsoft free tools that can ignite the classroom in all content and curriculum areas; 2. Discover ways to increase productivity and student engagement; 3. Expand skills into industry leading trends: Flipped and Blended Learning, Global Learning, Gaming/Coding, and Productivity; and 4. Explore learning beyond the classroom walls with resources like Bing in the Classroom and Skype in the Classroom.

In the Classroom

The archive of this teacher-friendly, hands-on webinar will empower and inspire you to use learning technology in the classroom and for professional productivity. As appropriate, specific classroom examples and ideas have been shared. View the session with a few of your teaching colleagues to find and share new ideas. Find additional information and links to tools at the session resource page. Learn more about OK2Ask and upcoming sessions here.
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OK2Ask: Make the Most of Your TeachersFirst Membership - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional development session from May 2017, opens in Adobe Connect. Inspire technology integrated lessons for student learning based on web-based...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional development session from May 2017, opens in Adobe Connect. Inspire technology integrated lessons for student learning based on web-based resources. Learn about the features and benefits of your free TeachersFirst membership. This session will briefly share how to find and use resources on TeachersFirst to help you save time. Remember, it is OK2Ask questions at any time! This session is appropriate for teachers at all technology levels. As a result of this session teachers will: 1. Explore TeachersFirst membership Features; 2. Identify and share resources to support classroom instruction and; 3. Prepare to use the features of TeachersFirst to maximize student learning.

In the Classroom

The archive of this teacher-friendly, hands-on webinar will empower and inspire you to use learning technology in the classroom and for professional productivity. As appropriate, specific classroom examples and ideas have been shared. View the session with a few of your teaching colleagues to find and share new ideas. Find additional information and links to tools at the session resource page. Learn more about OK2Ask and upcoming sessions here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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OK2Ask: Meet Google Classroom - TeachersFirst

Grades
3 to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional development session from May 2017, opens in Adobe Connect. Want to go paperless? Try Google Classroom, an online tool that incorporates...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional development session from May 2017, opens in Adobe Connect. Want to go paperless? Try Google Classroom, an online tool that incorporates G-Suite apps into a dynamic classroom environment. Learn how to create, distribute, and grade assignments. Understand how to organize class resources, post announcements, and questions. Google Classroom makes it easy to coordinate and organize your G-Suite and tech-infused students projects. This session is appropriate for teachers at all technology levels. NOTE: To participate you must be able to sign into a Google account that has been set up by your school district. You must have access to G-Suite with Google Classroom turned on. As a result of this session teachers will: (1) Set up a basic Google Classroom; (2) Create an assignment and import a document into either a question, announcement or topical post; and (3) Plan for the use of Google Classroom in their setting.

In the Classroom

The archive of this teacher-friendly, hands-on webinar will empower and inspire you to use learning technology in the classroom and for professional productivity. As appropriate, specific classroom examples and ideas have been shared. View the session with a few of your teaching colleagues to find and share new ideas. Find additional information and links to tools at the session resource page. Learn more about OK2Ask and upcoming sessions here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Taskade - John Xie & Stan ChangKhin Boon

Grades
K to 12
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Taskade is an easy to use to-do list creator and manager. Just start typing to create a list, no registration required. As soon as you start the list, a link ...more
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Taskade is an easy to use to-do list creator and manager. Just start typing to create a list, no registration required. As soon as you start the list, a link appears for sharing and collaborating. To save, create a free account with a username, email, and password to find and manage previous items. Change the theme when you click to share a list on Facebook or Twitter (but you don't have to share; just open one of them and go back to your list to change the theme). You can even add Taskade to your Chrome browser for easy access or when you open a new tab your current list will appear as the opening page!

tag(s): note taking (39), organizational skills (128)

In the Classroom

Create checklists of steps in a project. Place all notes in one place, so you do not forget. 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. They could use Taskade for assignment information, reminders, and more. Consider setting up a class account that can be used by all students. Spell out the use of the site and what is allowed and not allowed -- and the penalties. Set up separate accounts for student groups who can then share their notebook with other groups.

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Name Picker Ninja - Zack Vogel

Grades
K to 12
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Randomly select a name for any activity with Name Picker Ninja. Add your list of names, and Go! The Name Picker Ninja will scroll through the list and stop on ...more
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Randomly select a name for any activity with Name Picker Ninja. Add your list of names, and Go! The Name Picker Ninja will scroll through the list and stop on a random name. Delete that name and continue. Alternatively, if you want to keep all names active, click Go! again.

tag(s): classroom management (156), gamification (81), preK (294)

In the Classroom

The obvious use for this tool is for selecting students to answer a question or do an activity. Other uses could include forming groups/pairs or creating seating charts. Allow students to use it when it's time to choose the next student. Instead of names, enter activities for P.E., rainy day recess activities, the next book your class will read together, or anything where you need to make a choice. Save your lists as a template with a Word doc or PDF so you can copy and paste them for reuse later.
 

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OurStickys - Fabrizio Parrella

Grades
4 to 12
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OurStickys is a Chrome extension that allows users to add a sticky note to any web page or PDF and has some unique features not found on most sticky note ...more
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OurStickys is a Chrome extension that allows users to add a sticky note to any web page or PDF and has some unique features not found on most sticky note tools. Your sticky note appears each time you open that page, even on another machine! Once installed, right-click on any page to add a note. Personalize notes by color, font, size, and position. Add YouTube videos that will play directly in the sticky. Drag and drop text from any program. Even convert a sticky to a "to-do" list! Follow directions to install the extension on your Chrome browser. Plans for the future of this tool include adding the ability to have a simple chat per sticky and to have reminders with notifications.

tag(s): brainstorming (26), note taking (39), organizational skills (128)

In the Classroom

Make notes for conferences, lab materials, books needed, or even parent conferences on any web page. Add sticky notes to any webpage or PDF shared with students on your interactive whiteboard to remind them of important information or as a list of important items to watch for when viewing a page. Create a list of vocabulary words from any website as you view it together. Share this extension for students to use on their personal device for note-taking.

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Sugarcane - IXL Learning

Grades
3 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Create and play learning games with Sugarcane. Choose from eighteen options for game types including matching, associating, ordering, and categorizing activities. Sugarcane offers several...more
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Create and play learning games with Sugarcane. Choose from eighteen options for game types including matching, associating, ordering, and categorizing activities. Sugarcane offers several additional options within each of those categories. Next, enter data in the template or import CSV or Excel files with your information. The last step provides options for personalizing games. For additional help, Sugarcane includes tutorials each step of the way. To learn more about the types of games available, browse through topics on the home page of the site to find and play games created by others. Use Google or Facebook to make an account or fill in a username, your email, and a password. You can play and create games without an account; when creating a game, you need an account to save it.

tag(s): flash cards (45), game based learning (126), puzzles (202)

In the Classroom

Bookmark and save this site throughout the year. New to using technology or games in your classroom? Not comfortable creating games? Use the ready-made learning games on class computers or provide links to activities on your class website or blog for use at home. Another option is to challenge older students to create educational games for their peers using the templates and instructions provided. Instead of a research report, they can create a game! Share with parent helpers or classroom tutors to create review activities for student practice. Learning support teachers can have small groups create a game together to help review any material. Assign a small group of students to work with different game templates and then act as "host" of the game to quiz the rest of the class. Sugarcane is an ideal review or way to present student research information on a topic and keep the "audience" engaged.

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Podcast Generator - Alberto Betella

Grades
1 to 12
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Podcast Generator is a free download for uploading and publishing audio and video podcasts. Install the software using the three-step setup wizard to begin. The generator also includes...more
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Podcast Generator is a free download for uploading and publishing audio and video podcasts. Install the software using the three-step setup wizard to begin. The generator also includes options for customizing the appearance of podcasts using themes. Podcast Generator works on most desktops, laptops and web browsers, AND this download seamlessly integrates with the Apple store for uploading podcasts to iTunes.
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tag(s): podcasts (59), video (278)

In the Classroom

Create regular or special podcasts to share on your class web page or wiki. Create a mini cast of images taken during a lab or a portfolio of images from photography, art, or any other class. Add music and share as part of a digital portfolio. Looking for even more ideas? Record class assignments or directions. Record story time or a reading excerpt for younger ones to listen to at a computer center AND from home! Have readers (perhaps older buddies) build fluency by recording selected passages for your non-readers. Launch a service project for your fifth or sixth graders to record stories for the kindergarten to use in their reading and listening center. Challenge students to create "you are there" recordings as "eyewitnesses" to historical or current events. Make a weekly class podcast, with students taking turns writing and sharing the "Class News," encourage students to create radio advertisements for concepts studied in class (Buy Dynamic DNA!). Invite students to write and record their own stories or poetry in dramatic readings. Language students or beginning readers could record their fluency by reading passages. Allow parents to hear their child's progress reading aloud, etc. Compare world language, speech articulation, or reading fluency at two points during the year. Challenge your Shakespeare students to record a soliloquy. Write and record a poem for Father's or Mother's Day (or other special events) and send the URL as a gift to that special person.

If you have gifted students who lean toward the dramatic, this tool is simple enough for them to create dramatic mini casts without needing a video camera. Have students upload their own images and write a drama to accompany them, showing what they have learned in independent learning beyond the regular curriculum.

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asymetrica - Aysmetrica Labs, Inc.

Grades
2 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
 
aysmetrica is an interesting web browser extension designed to adjust the spaces in text to create an easier reading experience. View the examples on the How it Works page to ...more
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aysmetrica is an interesting web browser extension designed to adjust the spaces in text to create an easier reading experience. View the examples on the How it Works page to understand what aysmetrica offers and why it makes reading easier in many instances. Reduce cognitive load by creating chunks of text instead of one space between each word; this makes content easier to read and understand. Use the slider to adjust the amount of formatting provided. Be sure to follow the links, found in the top menu under More, to download the free browser extension for aysmetrica for personal use. This site requires email registration.
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tag(s): reading comprehension (124), reading strategies (50)

In the Classroom

Install aysmetrica on classroom computers for student use when reading text-heavy online content. aysmetrica may be especially helpful for ESL/ELL and special education students to use as an aid in reading and comprehending text. Share text on an interactive whiteboard or with a projector using aysmetrica as part of a lesson on reading skills to demonstrate "chunking" of text.

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