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Eclipse Crossword Creator - Eclipse Crossword

Grades
1 to 12
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Create crossword puzzles quickly and easily with this fast and free site. Crosswords can easily be customized with settings within the program. Advanced users can fine-tune the settings...more
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Create crossword puzzles quickly and easily with this fast and free site. Crosswords can easily be customized with settings within the program. Advanced users can fine-tune the settings to the way they like them, everything from the positioning of the first few words to how important it is to have a compact puzzle. To get started, download the software and install on your computer (be sure to follow school rules regarding download and installation of software if using school computers). Next, input your list of words and clues, then create your puzzle. Once created, you can print puzzles, save it as a web page, or choose from different types of interactive pages that your visitors can play right in their web browser, without installing new software.

tag(s): crosswords (18), puzzles (206)

In the Classroom

Create puzzles for any subject or topic for review or introduction to new materials. Allow students to create puzzles for other students to solve. Add a puzzle to your classroom newsletter or blog to create interest. Share puzzles on your interactive whiteboard for students to solve together.

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Digg.com - Digg Inc.

Grades
7 to 12
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Digg is a social news network. Similar in some qualities to Facebook and other such social media. You can post stories you find interesting and browse "Top Stories" which are ...more
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Digg is a social news network. Similar in some qualities to Facebook and other such social media. You can post stories you find interesting and browse "Top Stories" which are more or less the most popular stories being shared on the Internet. It is meant to be a snapshot of the most interesting, relevant, quirky, and fun content on the web! Once you sign up, you can start to Digg your own favorites. This site also features "Digg Dialogg" where members submit questions to notable leaders and community members decide on which questions will be asked and interviews are shared on the site. Be sure to preview items that you wish to share. A few "violent" warnings were noted at the time of this review, but the other 99% of the shared items were excellent for using in the classroom.

tag(s): debate (43), news (261), social networking (114)

In the Classroom

Try using Digg as a warm up Internet activity in the beginning of the school year by having older students sign up for their own account. Have them scan and read as part of current events teaching. The articles can be controversial which provides a great place to start debates. It also provides a great resource for research. Have students make a multimedia presentation using one of the many TeachersFirst Edge tools reviewed here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Copyright free/Public domain images - Jen Presley

Grades
K to 12
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Discover a nice collection of source for public domain and copyright free images from around the web. This Livebinders...more
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Discover a nice collection of source for public domain and copyright free images from around the web. This Livebinders site features a wonderful array of images and photos on a variety of topics.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): images (274), photography (161)

In the Classroom

When looking for copyright free materials for use in projects or to place on websites, begin your search here. Be sure to keep a link to this site on your wiki, blog, or web page for students to use whenever they are working on a project.

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wickED - Science Interactives - Ministry of Education, Wellington, New Zealand

Grades
4 to 8
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Enjoy learning about the earth's geography with these engaging interactives. This site includes six different interactives that show the earth's make-up and more about plate tectonics...more
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Enjoy learning about the earth's geography with these engaging interactives. This site includes six different interactives that show the earth's make-up and more about plate tectonics and rock formation. Explore about the rock cycle or a lab to find out what the earth is made of. Each activity gives just enough information to pique interest and allow for further exploration. If you are using a Mac, you will need to download the free Shockwave plugins to make the interactives work on your Mac. Download the Shockwave plugin here.

tag(s): plate tectonics (25), rock cycle (10), rocks (51), volcanoes (65)

In the Classroom

This site would be perfect to use when introducing a unit on rocks and the rock cycle, plate tectonics, or heat and pressure within the earth. Allow students to explore the interactives and compose questions that they would like to have answered. Challenge students to create a word cloud of terms from one of the interactives using a tool such as Wordle reviewed here. Continue to add to the Wordle throughout your unit.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Educreations - Educreations, Inc.

Grades
6 to 12
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Use Educreations' simple web-based whiteboard (works in any browser that supports flash) or the iPad app to record lessons and share with your students. Create your course(s) and control...more
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Use Educreations' simple web-based whiteboard (works in any browser that supports flash) or the iPad app to record lessons and share with your students. Create your course(s) and control privacy settings from the beginning. Make the content pubic, private to your students, or private to all within the school. Create a lesson by using the online whiteboard and your microphone. Easily upload images from your computer and switch between whiteboard screens. Click on the Students tab to provide a link for students to be able to find your course. Students can self-register using the unique classroom code. Each lesson has a unique URL you can share, as well. Students can access your lessons via the web or an iPad. You can remove students from registration lists in this section.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): homework (46), video (269)

In the Classroom

Use this resource to create homework help for students to peruse when they are stuck on their own trying to complete assignments. Create mini lessons for students to review or learn the material they may have missed. Consider allowing students to use your account to write a script and record mini lessons for use by other students. Even two recordings of the same lesson is valuable as information can be explained differently from more than one person. Be sure to include this link on your class website for students (and parents) to access at home.

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World Science - World Science

Grades
4 to 12
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Find science news featuring the latest research, discoveries, and questions facing science today. Find interesting questions to inspire all of your students to wonder why and continue...more
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Find science news featuring the latest research, discoveries, and questions facing science today. Find interesting questions to inspire all of your students to wonder why and continue guessing. Examples of articles include: Second "Mozart effect" Premature Babies May Grow Faster, Huge Hidden Saturn Ring Found, and New Anti-Cancer Strategy Makes Tumors Age. Latest breaking news and science in images add a greater depth to the site.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): animal homes (42), animals (285), diseases (68), genetics (92), news (261), planets (126)

In the Classroom

World Science empowers your students to recognize that they too can ask questions, and they too can understand the latest science questions and answers. Inspire thinkers to find questions and seek answers. Set as your home page and always captivate your students. Use as a reference site to add the latest science news. Subscribe and send to each of your students emails. Reinforce the scientific method in everyday research. Have your classes create their own science news on your website. This is an excellent site for inspiring critical thinking skills and creative thinking. Be sure to include this site as part of your current events and curriculum in gifted and advanced classes.

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Creative Puzzles - Respective Authors

Grades
3 to 12
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Here you will find educational computer activities that challenge problem solving and critical thinking skills. Multiple levels meet your students' needs. A Holy Sphinx offers hints...more
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Here you will find educational computer activities that challenge problem solving and critical thinking skills. Multiple levels meet your students' needs. A Holy Sphinx offers hints to solve problems.

tag(s): critical thinking (110), logic (236), problem solving (272), puzzles (206)

In the Classroom

Strengthen your student's problem solving and critical thinking skills. Offer class competitions to increase motivation and thinking. Gaming provides high interest in your hardest to motivate students. Many of these games easily intrigue gifted and advanced classes. Inspire computer classes to create their own games with a place to post with high usability. Use as center time activity, reward time, or extra challenges.

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Syvum - Syvum

Grades
4 to 12
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Enter the world of Syvum, a site of logic, math, reasoning, words, and general knowledge puzzles. Join others in playing the many games offered. Every challenge offers background information...more
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Enter the world of Syvum, a site of logic, math, reasoning, words, and general knowledge puzzles. Join others in playing the many games offered. Every challenge offers background information to help you understand the puzzle. With a free membership you can even create your own quizzes and puzzles.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): creativity (118), critical thinking (110), logic (236), problem solving (272)

In the Classroom

As a teacher, get a free membership with some capabilities to manage your class such as creating your own quizzes and monitoring class progress. This is the sure-fire way to increase problem solving and creative thinking skills through gaming. Use as a whole class activity, individual, or reward time options. Expand the way gifted and advanced classes think! Put a link to this site on your class webpage, wiki, or blog.

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World Population Clock - Galen Huntington

Grades
6 to 12
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This World Population Clock offers a world population counter. It is not perfect but it is an effective tool to show just how dramatic and quickly the population is growing. ...more
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This World Population Clock offers a world population counter. It is not perfect but it is an effective tool to show just how dramatic and quickly the population is growing. "Freeze" the site and resume the counter later to show just how big changes can take place in small amounts of time. The calculator can also estimate the population at a chosen date.

tag(s): conservation (127), environment (319), population (61)

In the Classroom

Try using this website in science class during environmental science units on human population growth. Start the class by sharing this website on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) for students to see. Explain the concept of a population counter, and pause the clock. Have students copy down the number in their notes. Continue with class discussion and activities. With five or so minutes left in the class, bring the students back to the website and quickly unfreeze and re-freeze. Have students compute the change in population during their class. This site offers a real connection to the concept of population growth, easy for students to SEE.

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QR Treasure Hunt Generator - Classtools.net

Grades
4 to 12
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Interested in using QR codes in an engaging way? Try this Treasure Hunt Generator that uses QR codes. It's simple. Enter your questions and answers. Then click Create the QR ...more
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Interested in using QR codes in an engaging way? Try this Treasure Hunt Generator that uses QR codes. It's simple. Enter your questions and answers. Then click Create the QR Challenge. These are generated as text files which can be printed and posted wherever you want. Students use a QR reader (such as on iTouches, iPads, or phones) to scan and open the question and directions. Students then continue on by finding and answering the questions.

Note: QR code readers exist for every type of phone and are easily found on the Internet. For computers, add-ons exist for Firefox and Chrome as well as a desktop application from Adobe.

tag(s): game based learning (109), gamification (71), qr codes (21)

In the Classroom

Use to make any class content into a treasure hunt for knowledge. Keep students engaged by creating learning centers that have a question requiring an answer and perhaps another activity at the center before going on to the next. Have students learn and answer questions about mystery objects, art prints, or books/authors with accompanying QR codes. Identify trees by creating a QR code with a question about the tree and perhaps another link taking them to specific information. Create a scavenger hunt around the school asking questions about activities in the school or certain student projects found in showcases. (The first QR code could be printed in the school newsletter.) Create a treasure hunt with books in the library to test library search skills or to find a specific book and answer questions from the index, table of contents, etc. Use QR codes on objects in Geometry to ask questions about the shapes or solve a problem based on a physical object. Any subject area and content could find a use for this Treasure Hunt Generator. Challenge students to create their own QR treasure hunts as a way to "present" research projects. Use in social studies for the entire class to create a QR code hunt around your community to bring local history to life for all residents.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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SearchTeam - Zakta LLC

Grades
5 to 12
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This search engine is designed for you to search collaboratively with others. Avoid duplicate search results and record comments and "likes." Once you register (requires email), click...more
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This search engine is designed for you to search collaboratively with others. Avoid duplicate search results and record comments and "likes." Once you register (requires email), click Contacts (or Invite Friends To Search Together) to add others with whom you can collaborate on searches. All collaborators must have email and be registered. Be aware: as with most search engines, inappropriate words can be used/searched. Be sure your students know the rules, expectations, and consequences for inappropriate searches.

tag(s): search engines (65), search strategies (30)

In the Classroom

Use this resource for any project or other classroom research where students can benefit from collaborative research. This is a great alternative to meeting at a group member's house or the library. And it saves gas! For students under age 13, use a whole class account and have each group use a different TAB that you set up for them. A how-to video on the site will guide you through set up.

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Sound Cloud - SoundCloud Ltd.

Grades
K to 12
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SoundCloud is a sound sharing site. Upload your favorite sounds and share using your sound cloud free account. Share via a link or a choice of embed widgets to add ...more
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SoundCloud is a sound sharing site. Upload your favorite sounds and share using your sound cloud free account. Share via a link or a choice of embed widgets to add into a website, blog, podcast, Wordpress, email, instant message, or social network. You can choose to use previously recorded sounds or record your own sounds using this site. Share the sounds on the web, with your group, or privately between users. Use your drop box to receive recorded material from others.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): creative writing (168), descriptive writing (42), expository writing (45), sound (103), sounds (68)

In the Classroom

Add the dimension of sound into your language arts classes with SoundCloud! Turn written stories or poetry into works of spoken art. Use SoundCloud recordings of places such as; the city, the forest, the beach, or a cafeteria to bring settings to life. Make and share audio writing prompts. Challenge students to create their own story using sounds. Add sound into projects such as webquests, PowerPoints, podcasts, or blogging to hear the results! Emphasize important messages to your parent or student emails using sound. What a practical solution for ESL/ELL learners. Record and share poetry readings during Poetry Month. Save quarterly recordings of speech articulation students s they can hear their own progress (and you can share it with parents). Check school policies, of course, before uploading any student recordings to the web. Instrumental music teachers can share clips of musical pieces for students to emulate during at-home practice.

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CAST Science Writer - CAST, Inc.

Grades
6 to 12
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Get help writing science reports. Follow the steps of a science report, already broken down to show where all the information goes. This tool includes sentence starters and checklists...more
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Get help writing science reports. Follow the steps of a science report, already broken down to show where all the information goes. This tool includes sentence starters and checklists that are helpful when editing and revising a report. Follow the process of creating a draft, revising the report, and final editing. Use the text to speech tool found in the resource to hear your report being read back to you, a powerful way to hear whether it makes sense. The site states "This tool is geared toward middle school and high school students." However, there are activities applicable to upper elementary grades.

tag(s): science fairs (25), scientific method (64)

In the Classroom

Be sure to place this link on the school blog, wiki, or class website for easy access throughout the year. Demonstrate in class or use as a group. Share the site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Students will find it a great resource. Knowing when to discuss information is difficult for most to decide when writing a lab report. After creating a report, have students discuss or create a display that shows where information needs to be placed in a lab report.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

Comments

This resource is described as being for students in grades 6 through 12, but the interface has animated "helpers" that would be more appropriate for younger students. The breakdown of report writing into sections also seems a bit simplistic--also more appropriate for younger students. I think it would be better to describe this resource as being for grades 2-5. Note from the editorial team: The site states that this tool is designed for middle school and high school students. However, after further review, we agree that it would be useful in the elementary grades. We have adjusted our review based on your recommendations. Rita, WA, Grades: 6 - 12

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Show(R) USA - SHOW(R)

Grades
6 to 12
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See a new way to look at the USA (or the World, or Japan). This site resizes countries on the map in relation to various issues: population, resources, employment, religion, ...more
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See a new way to look at the USA (or the World, or Japan). This site resizes countries on the map in relation to various issues: population, resources, employment, religion, death, business, the environment, and more. Each main topic also has numerous sub-topics to explore. Maps adjust to correspond to data. For example, click on "unemployed" on the U.S. map and you see the states in proportion to the number of unemployed workers. Mouse over the state and you can see the percentage of unemployed workers. A list on the right ranks states from 1 to 50 for the percentage of unemployed (or other specified topic). New maps/topics are constantly being added, and you can make suggestions as to what types of maps you would like to see.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): agriculture (56), elections (76), energy (202), environment (319), infographics (42), maps (290), politics (100), population (61), religions (66), resources (112), sports (97)

In the Classroom

When studying a specific topic in class (unemployment, AIDS, drunk driving, religion, energy resources, crops, etc.), share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Ask students why certain state or countries might differ from others. Are there issues that appear to be related, such as alcoholism and unemployment? Is it cause/effect or simply a coincidence? During election years, explore political leanings/polls and other statistics from this site. Have cooperative learning groups explore a specific topic (or state) and possible reasons for the data. To show what they have learned from this site, challenge groups to create an online graphic to share using Tabblo reviewed here. Have students make a multimedia presentation using one of the many TeachersFirst Edge tools reviewed here. Remember that you can always take screenshots of a map using PrtScrn key in Windows (then paste it where you want it) or using Command+Shift+4 on a Mac to save the image on your computer. Use the screenshots in explanations and presentations.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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GE Data Visualization - General Electric

Grades
7 to 12
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View data visualizations (infographics) about GE's initiatives. Click or rollover each interactive graph and review the data that can be found within it. Share these data visualizations...more
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View data visualizations (infographics) about GE's initiatives. Click or rollover each interactive graph and review the data that can be found within it. Share these data visualizations by email, twitter, or Facebook, as well as downloading each for further use. The topics range from energy use to health issues to innovation. Don't miss the retrospective of the year 2011 shown through data visualizations!
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): charts and graphs (194), data (148), energy (202), infographics (42)

In the Classroom

Use for basic information about energy and economic issues that can be discussed in class and researched even further. Share the graphs and information on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Challenge cooperative learning groups to explore different graphs and report back to the class. Use this site to inspire infographic projects in any social studies or science class.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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My Susthouse - Mysusthouse

Grades
3 to 9
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Explore the concept of sustainability interactively. Listen to information about sustainability and then play one of two games: Environment game (ages 8+) or Building game (ages 12+)....more
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Explore the concept of sustainability interactively. Listen to information about sustainability and then play one of two games: Environment game (ages 8+) or Building game (ages 12+). Follow the information in the videos to help you make decisions on where to live, how to save energy, and other decisions that impact our energy use. Learn how to build a house with alternative energies and materials to increase the sustainability.

tag(s): ecosystems (89), energy (202), environment (319), nuclear energy (24), population (61), solar energy (40), STEM (144), sustainability (19), water (130)

In the Classroom

Use as an introduction and discussion starter to a unit on environment, energy, population, or other topics in art, science, or STEM programs. Allow students the time to peruse the information and games on the site and return to the entire class to share what they have learned. Have students identify information used in the student's own homes, or what they would need to change to make their home more sustainable. Have your students create a public service announcement that can help others save energy and the environment. Consider using Tildee, reviewed here. With Tildee students can use text, screen shots, and video to develop their public service announcement.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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IndyKids - IndyKids

Grades
3 to 8
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IndyKids is an online newspaper for kids. This online version is the same as the printable version that produces 10,000 copies of each issue, reaching kids in 36 states of ...more
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IndyKids is an online newspaper for kids. This online version is the same as the printable version that produces 10,000 copies of each issue, reaching kids in 36 states of the US. Articles are written by both kids and adults, featuring topics related to current events and topics of interest to kids. Articles written by kids are noted as such and include the writer's age. At the time of this review, some of the "kid written articles" included Growing Poverty: Hard to Ignore At Home, Wasps: Do I Know You, and several others. Be sure to check out the category search on the lower right-hand portion of the site with topics such as: Kids Around the World, Culture and Activism, Education, and much more. Newspapers are archived in PDF format for easy printing and dated back several years.

tag(s): creative writing (168), expository writing (45), journalism (52), persuasive writing (55), writing (363)

In the Classroom

Share this site with students and have students choose an article to read, summarize, or expand upon. After reading articles on the site, have students choose a current topic that interests them and have them write an article as practice of informational writing. In science or social studies, study the newspaper format as students write articles reporting on scientific discoveries or famous people. Use the format of this newsletter as a resource for creating and publishing your own classroom newsletter online. During newspapers in education month, use this site to findaccessible articles for any age. Create a newspaper using a site such as Zinepal (reviewed here). Click to "Start with a blank e-Book."
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Infographics archive - Infographics Archive

Grades
7 to 12
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Find fascinating Infographics on a variety of topics: Technology, Environment, Business, Food Facts, Politics, Health Safety, and even Interesting Facts. What are Infographics? A graphic...more
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Find fascinating Infographics on a variety of topics: Technology, Environment, Business, Food Facts, Politics, Health Safety, and even Interesting Facts. What are Infographics? A graphic visual representation of information, data, or knowledge.
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tag(s): charts and graphs (194), data (148), graphic design (35), infographics (42)

In the Classroom

Use as an introduction to a lesson or unit. Use Think-Pair-Share to list and share information provided by the graphic. Develop questions to be answered to understand the information or questions that they just wonder. Allow students or groups of students to choose an Infographic that interests them and report on the information given. Consider assigning the creation of an Infographic as an assignment to understand content and connect it with the real world, such as showing the many ways electricity is used in the world or the impact of slavery on an economy. Or have them explain an experiment and report the results with graphical information to provide meaning. Since infographics are often key to understanding an article, reading teachers will appreciate this large collection to use in teaching/practicing how to interpret informational graphics within a text. Share one each day for students to practice telling you the "main idea" of the graphic.

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BBC - Sing - Learn to Sing - BBC

Grades
2 to 12
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"BBC- Sing- Learn to Sing" gives you a step by step tutorial on how to properly stand, warm up, sing, and improve your singing explained through text instructions, images, and ...more
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"BBC- Sing- Learn to Sing" gives you a step by step tutorial on how to properly stand, warm up, sing, and improve your singing explained through text instructions, images, and videos. This videos give you the basics; what you do with them is up to you! This a fun and interesting way to bring singing into your schools, especially where funding cuts have eliminated staffing for music.

tag(s): music theory (41), sound (103)

In the Classroom

This site would be great for music, choral teachers, musical directors, or individual students hoping to improve their singing. Use the tutorial with students who are new to singing and group performance. The more students know and practice, the more comfortable they will be with their own abilities. Assign this link from your webpage or wiki so that students may access the lessons from home to practice in their own comfort zone. This would also be great if you are the adviser of a musical club or group. Guitar clubs could even benefit from this, as they could learn how to sing better along with their instruments. In science class, include this site in a unit on sound as you investigate how human anatomy creates and adjusts sounds in singing.

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Wridea - Octeth Ltd.

Grades
4 to 12
6 Favorites 1  Comments
 
Wridea is an idea management, brainstorming, and collaboration tool. It's a place to organize and categorize your ideas, share them with others for input, and store them. To collaborate...more
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Wridea is an idea management, brainstorming, and collaboration tool. It's a place to organize and categorize your ideas, share them with others for input, and store them. To collaborate using this tool, you must have individual memberships (email required). Note that maps that are shared can be seen by the public, but not altered. You specify the members who may collaborate and make alterations. At this time, this site does not work properly in Internet Explorer. However, it is a great tool to use in Firefox, Safari, Chrome, or other browsers.

tag(s): brainstorming (24), concept mapping (22), graphic organizers (42), mind map (24), organizational skills (127)

In the Classroom

Demonstrate the activity on an interactive whiteboard or projector, and then allow students to create their own Wridea tool. Use this site for literature activities, research projects, social studies, or science topics. Have students collaborate together (online) to create group study guides or review charts before a test. Have students use Wridea as a study guide by brainstorming all the important concepts they remember about the unit being studied in history or science, and then have them share their Wridea with another student who will add concepts that were left out. Build student creative fluency by having them use Wridea to create categories of wonder, question, and answers for research; map out a story or plot line, or map out a step-by-step process (life cycle); map a real historical event as a choose-your-own-adventure with alternate endings based on pivotal points.

Comments

This resources looks like it has a wide variety of applications suitable to upper elementary and secondary classrooms. Sign up was quick and easy, but I received a message upon completing those steps that Wridea doesn't support Internet Explorer. It "suggested" using Mozilla Firefox instead. I'm a strong advocate for being comfortable with using several browsers, so, this doesn't throw up any huge roadblocks to me, but if you do not have or use Firefox, you will need to take that extra step as well before actually making use of this tool.

Editor's Note: the review has been updated to reflect this new information.
Rita, WA, Grades: 6 - 12

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