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e-learning for kids - Life Skills - Dr. Nick van Dam

Grades
3 to 8
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Explore fifteen Life Skills lessons ranging from Emotions to Stress to Choosing the Right Career. One of the activities, Dunkin' Doc, is a Jeopardy type word game for words associated...more
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Explore fifteen Life Skills lessons ranging from Emotions to Stress to Choosing the Right Career. One of the activities, Dunkin' Doc, is a Jeopardy type word game for words associated with school, communication, emotions, relationships, and family. Another area of the site, You and Others reviews peer pressure, fitting in, and cliques. Read and learn about self image and puberty in Growing Body and Personal IDM.

tag(s): bullying (48), careers (132), child development (25), emotions (35), family (59), human body (121), stress (15)

In the Classroom

Initially, share this site on an interactive whiteboard or projector as part of a relevant health unit , guidance class, or career unit. Suggest this site when students have clashes with others or are experiencing stress in their family life. If you have computers for at least half the students in your class or you are lucky enough to work in a "Bring Your Own Device" school, you might consider sharing the site with everyone and have them use Today's Meet reviewed here, to ask questions. Next set up rotating stations where students can learn about several social/emotional skills in a week. The text portions might be challenging for ESL/ELL and younger students. Pair your weaker readers with strong readers as necessary.
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Easy Street Prompts - Writing Blogs

Grades
5 to 12
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Throw away the traditional story starters and inspire writing (and art) with Easy Street Prompts. The prompts include videos, random words, and picture prompts that will truly inspire...more
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Throw away the traditional story starters and inspire writing (and art) with Easy Street Prompts. The prompts include videos, random words, and picture prompts that will truly inspire you and make you think. There are over a thousand prompts in the archives, even though the site does not seem to be adding new ones anymore.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): creative writing (166), descriptive writing (41), journals (21), writing prompts (92)

In the Classroom

Save this website to your favorites or link from your class web page. These inspirational ideas are perfect for journals, quick writes, or to develop into a full story or essay. There are plenty of unusual ideas to give even your most reluctant writer or artist an inspirational nudge. ESL/ELL students can be motivated easily with the video or picture prompts. Share these prompts with your gifted students for some "out of the box" writing ideas. Keep these creative ideas in your "emergency" lesson plan folder for substitutes or for your own spontaneous writing needs. Challenge students to share writing aloud in a podcast format with websites such as PodOmatic (reviewed here) or Spreaker (reviewed here). Create a Prezi (reviewed here) or PowerPoint with artwork or quotes created.
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Webnode - Webnode AG

Grades
K to 12
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Webnode is a free and easy website builder. Create an account. Choose from hundreds of template design options, including personal blogs. Add many site features: photo galleries, polls,...more
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Webnode is a free and easy website builder. Create an account. Choose from hundreds of template design options, including personal blogs. Add many site features: photo galleries, polls, forums, social features, and much more. Webnode saves changes as you make them, so information is stored in real time. Possible uses are only limited by your imagination!
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): blogs (88), social networking (111)

In the Classroom

Create a Webnode class website at any grade level for parents and students to stay updated about what is happening in the classroom if your school does not offer a class web site tool. With teens (and in accordance with school policy), try using Webnode for: "visual essays;" digital biodiversity logs (with digital photos students take), online literary magazines, and personal reflections in images and text. Consider using Webnodes for research project presentations, comparisons of online content, such as political candidates' sites or content sites used in research (compared for bias). The tool requires that a member be 13+, so you will want to create an account for your younger students to use. Using a whole-class account under your supervision, students can create pages documenting experiments or illustrating concepts, such as the water cycle, and "Visual" lab reports. Create digital scrapbooks on a class or individual page using images from the public domain and video and audio clips from a time in history -- such as the Roaring Twenties, Local history interactive stories, and Visual interpretations of major concepts, such as a "visual" U.S. Constitution. Imagine building your own online library of raw materials for your students to create their own "web pages" as a new way of assessing understanding. For younger students, provide the digital images, and they sequence, caption, and write about them on the class site under your supervision. For older students, provide the steps in the design as a template, and they insert the actual content of their own. After the first project where you provide "building blocks," the sky is the limit on what students can do. Even the very young can make suggestions as you "create" a whole-class product together using an interactive whiteboard or projector. You might consider making a new project for each unit you teach so students can "recap" long after the unit ends.

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Cosmo Learning - CosmoLearning.com

Grades
6 to 12
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Cosmo Learning aggregates an extensive library of subjects (42 total), courses (thousands to browse), video lectures, documentaries, images, books and other multimedia in dozens of...more
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Cosmo Learning aggregates an extensive library of subjects (42 total), courses (thousands to browse), video lectures, documentaries, images, books and other multimedia in dozens of subjects, all from sources all over the world. Their goal is to be a free online school. Subjects range from Anthropology to Entrepreneurship to Political Studies to Veterinarian Medicine. Find specific content using the search feature. You can also search using links to academic subjects or type of materials such as courses, documentaries, videos, or images. Registration isn't required, but allows you to save and rate features on the site. Be warned: there is a LOT to explore at this site! If your district blocks YouTube, videos may not be viewable. You could always view the videos at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid reviewed here to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): anthropology (11), archeology (32), architecture (83), business (58), engineering (125), environment (317), geology (81), german (62), marine biology (33), medicine (67), paleontology (41), politics (99), psychology (64), religions (62), sociology (22)

In the Classroom

Use materials from Cosmo Learning as part of any unit or lesson plan. Use materials on the site for flipped lessons or share with gifted learners as an enhancement to current course content. Using the flipped classroom format is helpful if YouTube is blocked at your school. Share lessons on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Teachers of gifted can share this with their students whose interests fall outside typical school curriculum to encourage independent study or projects. Provide the link to this site on your class wiki or website for students (and families) to access anytime.
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10 Myths About Gifted Students and Programs for the Gifted - Carolyn Coil

Grades
K to 12
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Stereotypes and myths abound surrounding the characteristics of gifted students and methods for teaching advanced learners. This short article discusses ten of the most common myths...more
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Stereotypes and myths abound surrounding the characteristics of gifted students and methods for teaching advanced learners. This short article discusses ten of the most common myths related to gifted education. The author discusses reasons why each myth is incorrect in a short, no-nonsense manner. For more information, be sure to check out links provided to resources at the end of the article.

tag(s): gifted (96)

In the Classroom

Read through this article for ideas on appropriate instruction for gifted learners in your classroom. Print and save this article (or bookmark on your computer) to include with your gifted teaching resources. Share this article during professional development sessions in your school and with parents of gifted students.

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Screencastify (Beta) - Chrome Web Store

Grades
K to 12
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Screencastify is a screen capture/screencast software created for use ONLY with Chrome browsers. It even runs on Chromebooks. Choose the "Free" link to add the extension to your Chrome...more
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Screencastify is a screen capture/screencast software created for use ONLY with Chrome browsers. It even runs on Chromebooks. Choose the "Free" link to add the extension to your Chrome browser. Screencastify captures video and audio within tabs. Find the application icon on your browser toolbar and click Record to easily record presentations, tutorials, and more. Be sure to ALLOW Screencastify access to your microphone to enable voice recordings. Choose from recording tabs or your entire desktop. Recording the desktop is currently experimental, however, and may not work as well as the tabs option. Once your recording is complete, return to the Screencastify icon on your browser to name the recording, download to your computer, or upload to YouTube.

tag(s): tutorials (46), video (259)

In the Classroom

Create screencasts showing how to do various computer tasks or navigate websites. Demonstrate how to use a website or software for specific tasks within the classroom. For example, show how to use the comment feature in Word for annotating class notes, reading passages, and other items. Make how-to demos for instructions on using and navigating your class home page, class wiki or blog, or other applications you wish the students to use in creating their own projects. By narrating how students should navigate through a certain site or section, you can eliminate confusion, provide an opportunity for students to replay the information as a refresher for the future, and maintain a record for absent students. Software demonstrations add an increased flexibility with helping students who need it while allowing students to begin and work at their own pace. Added audio is a great asset for many students, including learning support and those who might need to access the material in smaller "chunks." Use this site for students to give "tours" of their own wiki or blog page. The presentation of their web-based projects and resources can be more engaging. Use screencasts to critique or show the validity of websites, identify a resource site they believe is most valuable, or explain how to navigate an online game. Social studies teachers could assign students to critique a political candidate's web page using a screencast. Reading/language arts teachers could have student teams analyze a website to show biased language, etc. For a powerful writing experience, have students "think aloud" about their writing choices as they record a screencast of a revision or writing session. You will probably need to model this process, but writing will NEVER be the same! Math teachers using software such as Geometer's Sketchpad could have students create their own narrated demonstrations of geometry concepts as review (and to save as future learning aids). Teachers at any level can create screencasts to demonstrate a computer skill or assignment, such as for a center in your classroom or in a computer lab. Students can replay the "tutorial" on their own from your class web page and follow the directions. As a service project, have students write and record how to screencasts to help elderly or less tech savvy computer users navigate the web, register to vote, or find important health information. Writing for such a project would fit right in with CCSS informational writing and digital writing standards in middle and high school.

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OK2Ask'®: Gifted Resources Galore April 2014 - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional development session from April 2014, opens in Adobe Connect. Learn new ways to meet the needs of your gifted students. Participants will...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional development session from April 2014, opens in Adobe Connect. Learn new ways to meet the needs of your gifted students. Participants will view and explore tools that offer enrichment, advancement, differentiation, promote organization and focus, and more. There will be a question/answer period to meet individual challenges. Use exploration time to discover and discuss TeachersFirst resources available to use with gifted students. This fast paced session is appropriate for teachers at all technology comfort levels. As a result of this session and through individual follow-up, teachers will: Gather ideas by exploring 6 -10 specialized resources on TeachersFirst; Explore and practice with selected resources; Investigate and discuss lesson ideas offered in reviews and by other participants; List and discuss other curriculum related projects or activities that could be done using the resources in the teacher's own teaching situation; Have individual questions/concerned addressed by both our experienced Gifted/Talented specialists and other participants; and (Follow-up) Implement one of the provided resources into an upcoming teaching unit or lesson. Applicable ISTE-T standards (2008)*: 1a, b, c; 2a, b, c, d; 3b, c, d; 4c. Please read the full text at ISTE's page

tag(s): gifted (96), organizational skills (121)

In the Classroom

Having a hard time finding materials to enrich and advance your gifted students? Explore (and share) the many resources from this site. Share the organization tips/sites with your students. Share these resources on your class website for both students and parents to access. Take a look at the resource page full of GREAT ideas! Learn more about OK2Ask and upcoming sessions here.
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Cumberland Trace Gifted - DAP Tool - Julia Roberts and Tracy Inman

Grades
K to 12
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The DAP (Developing and Assessing Products) Tool is a set of rubrics developed to assess student products at varying levels of expertise. The intent of the DAP Tool is to ...more
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The DAP (Developing and Assessing Products) Tool is a set of rubrics developed to assess student products at varying levels of expertise. The intent of the DAP Tool is to differentiate while taking the ceiling off higher level and creative thinking skills (perfect for gifted learners). There are four components for all products: content, presentation, creativity, and reflection. The tool offers rubrics at three performance levels. Especially appropriate for removing a "ceiling" for gifted students is the inclusion of an expert or "professional" performance level rating. This rating acknowledges work that one would expect from a professional in the content area. The criteria for each level increase in sophisticated. Level 1 would be for younger students or those with less expertise. Level 3 might be for high school and/or your most gifted students-- at any grade level. There are fourteen different product rubrics and a blank rubric at each level. The blank rubric suggests descriptions for all but the presentation component. Some of the products are PowerPoint, poster, pamphlet, diorama, service learning, monologue, model, and more. Download the rubrics in PDF format.

tag(s): critical thinking (111), differentiation (48), essays (22), interviews (16), posters (36), rubrics (32), service projects (25), speech (91), writing (361)

In the Classroom

Offer individualized rubrics for every project so each student can demonstrate appropriate expertise. These rubrics are perfect to use in the heterogeneous classroom where you might have a mix of ESL/ELL, gifted, and learning support students. Many of these activities are ideal for differentiating for your gifted students and providing challenges more suited to their ability, creativity, and thought process.
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Frame Games And Critical Thinking Puzzles by Terry Stickels - Terry Stickels

Grades
2 to 12
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Enjoy the ultimate of word puzzles at Frame Games! Terry Stickels has posted 53 of these, free, for solving. Not sure what a Frame Game is? It is a word ...more
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Enjoy the ultimate of word puzzles at Frame Games! Terry Stickels has posted 53 of these, free, for solving. Not sure what a Frame Game is? It is a word or words in a box (a puzzle of sorts) with funny spelling or shows the word in a special position or presentation. There are many names for this type of puzzle, and you will figure out how they work once you try one. The goal is to guess the meaning (usually a common phrase). Lighten up and have some fun by treating yourself to one of these puzzles when taking a break during the day. Build your mental flexibility. See the correct answers by advancing to the next puzzle.

tag(s): critical thinking (111), flexibility (5), gifted (96), logic (237), puzzles (209)

In the Classroom

Share these puzzles on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Use these puzzles as a morning opener to get students settled and ready for learning. Use as a break when transitioning between activities. ESL/ELL students will benefit by trying to solve these common American English phrases, and learning about them, too! Include these during a study of prepositions and positional words in a speech and language class or during a lesson on idioms in English class. Challenge students to create their own Frame Games of common idioms such as "over a barrel" and share with the class. Have students create posters to share their Frame Games using a tool such as Web Poster Wizard (reviewed here).
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Literably - Tyler Borek and Habib Moody

Grades
K to 8
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Use Literably to assess students' oral reading and comprehension. Literably will display a text, administer the reading assessment, score it, generate an audio recording, and keep a...more
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Use Literably to assess students' oral reading and comprehension. Literably will display a text, administer the reading assessment, score it, generate an audio recording, and keep a running record. It will also report words correct per minute, percentage accuracy, and a leveling recommendation. Literably also provides readers' Lexile measures, grade levels, and guided reading levels. Test comprehension levels using open response or multiple choice questions. Register with an email, and set up a class easily. Keep your username short for ease of registration by primary students. The free account allows for testing 5 students per calendar month. Student sign in is extremely easy, even for a first grader. Print results or email to parents for easy sharing. IMPORTANT Note: Results (accuracy and WPM) are not available instantly and take up to 18-24 hours to arrive via email or be posted on the site. Literably is compatible with most browsers, and there is a free iPad app.
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tag(s): assessment (102), fluency (23), reading comprehension (114)

In the Classroom

After creating a class list, either choose readings based on your estimate for each student or let Literably choose them. You will need to demonstrate on a projector or whiteboard where to click to Allow the mike to work. Set up a center (or several) in your classroom and rotate students through it. Test all students at one time (or at least 15 students) if you are lucky enough to have that many devices in your room or a lab at your school. You will probably want to use headsets with microphones to limit distractions. However, the built in microphone on the computer will work just fine. This tool is perfect for reporting to parents and administrators. It's also great for resource teachers to share during IEP meetings. Turn this assessment tool into a teaching tool by having students listen to their recordings and follow the text to pause the incorrect recording and read it correctly. Have them try the same reading again to see if they can improve their score. Test a class of 30 within a month's time by testing 15 students at the end of one calendar month and 15 more at the beginning of the next calendar month. The site looks only at the actual date in limiting your free account to 15 per month!

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Timeline - ReadWriteThink

Grades
2 to 12
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Create a printed or pdf timeline using this handy tool. There is no registration required. This tool allows you to easily add, drag, and rearrange items as work progresses. Timelines...more
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Create a printed or pdf timeline using this handy tool. There is no registration required. This tool allows you to easily add, drag, and rearrange items as work progresses. Timelines can be organized by day, date, or event. Add an image for each event to make a timeline visually appealing. The event label can include an annotation for the image with short or long descriptive text. Save as a draft to make revisions later or finalize and share the timeline via email (as a pdf). You can also download and save the file. Click Get Started and begin your timeline by simply entering your name and the name of the project. Teachers will want to explore lessons that use this timeline tool. Lessons are divided up by grade level. For more explanation about saving work in progress, go to the Videos menu and click "Using RWT" to find a video about Saving Work With the Student Interactives.

tag(s): timelines (63)

In the Classroom

Demonstrate how to use this tool with your projector or interactive whiteboard. In lower grades, you could make a timeline of the months and add images of all who have birthdays each month. This tool is so versatile it can be used for a variety of topics and subjects, including autobiographical incidents, plots of a story or book, the cell cycle, stages in volcanic eruptions, any history topic, steps in a math problem, or steps in a plan to create a project. As students learn about informational texts in CCSS, they can also learn about adding (and interpreting) graphical information to accompany their words. Students who cannot complete their work during the class time can save their work in a local computer (in its own rwt file format) to finish later. Just make sure the student names it logically and knows WHERE the file is saved!!
 
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Hemingway - Ben and Adam Long

Grades
5 to 12
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Make revising your writing easy and enjoyable using Hemingway. Simply copy/paste your text into this website, and receive instant feedback. The visual aspect of this program helps one...more
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Make revising your writing easy and enjoyable using Hemingway. Simply copy/paste your text into this website, and receive instant feedback. The visual aspect of this program helps one to see exactly where the errors are and where to make improvements. There are color coded suggestions for wordiness, weak adverb use, passive voice, and complicated words and phrases. Did you know that the most effective writing is at or under grade level ten? The goal of the program is to help writers make their missives concise and clear.

tag(s): editing (62), proofreading (19), writing (361)

In the Classroom

Use this highly visual revision program with your students who are ready to refine and improve their writing. This is a wonderful program to use for revision after editing of grammar and mechanics is complete. Discover what is making your writing too wordy (excessive prepositional phrases or adverbs?) Partner an advanced writer with one not so advanced and have them use Hemingway to improve their styles. Put the URL on your website for students and parents to use from home. Remind seniors to use it for their college essays. Use this tool to polish your own professional writing, parent newsletters, blog posts, and papers for grad classes!

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Penflip - Collaborative Writing and Version Control - Loren Burton

Grades
6 to 12
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Penflip is a collaborative writing tool that allows groups of three or more to write together with complete version control. Write together without distractions or ads right in your...more
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Penflip is a collaborative writing tool that allows groups of three or more to write together with complete version control. Write together without distractions or ads right in your web browser! Click on "Share" at the bottom of the right menu to copy/paste the address into an email to your collaborators. Clicking on "Contributors" gives options to add users as editors or delete them as contributors. Once revisions are made and submitted, the contributor is notified via email of any future changes to that piece. When reviewing suggested changes, you can delete the changes you don't want and accept others. Accepting changes will merge these into the master (your original project). Penflip calls any writing a "project" whether it's a book, a short story, a poem, or a research paper. The free version makes all projects "public," but you have the choice to refuse pending revisions by clicking on "Contributors" in the right menu and clicking the minus symbol, deleting that contributor.
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tag(s): creative writing (166), editing (62), process writing (43), proofreading (19), writing (361)

In the Classroom

Immerse students in the peer review process by allowing them to collaborate using Penflip! Teachers and students can use Penflip to make comments in a side box or directly in the writing. All suggested revisions are in a different color with the original wording left complete. Penflip is the perfect place for students to put their writing and get feedback. Student peers can suggest different wording and ideas, and all are color-coded so the author knows what has been contributed and what is original. This tool will fulfill the Common Core Standard requirements for using technology for collaborating and writing across the curriculum. Students will save time and learn from each other when working in small groups on projects or research papers in world language classes, science, math, or social studies. The best part of this site: it is EASY to use!

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Paste to Grid (Beta) - pastetogrid.com

Grades
K to 12
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Create custom photo collages with Paste to Grid. Choose one of the templates that include up to 9 images. Select your border color and size, or select "no border." Click ...more
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Create custom photo collages with Paste to Grid. Choose one of the templates that include up to 9 images. Select your border color and size, or select "no border." Click in each box to add an image from your computer. Lesson learned from our editor: Be sure to select border options before adding images; choosing them after causes the images to disappear. The site's authors state this feature will be improved in the next version. When complete, choose to save as PNG or JPG file to your computer.

tag(s): collages (17), images (269), vocabulary development (125)

In the Classroom

Create and share collages of classroom activities, field trips, and much more. In lower grades, create the collage together with your students. Embed collages into your class website or blog for viewing at home. Have students create collages using their own pictures of land formations, types of plants, colors, words beginning with the same letter of the alphabet, and whatever else you can think of! This is a great tool for your visual learners. Special ed, speech and language, or ESL/ELL teachers can create collages of images together with their students to promote vocabulary development. World language classes could create them on their own or use them as prompts for oral language practice. A collage could feature articles of clothing or types of weather, for example. Create cards as gifts for moms or dads or for thank you's to members of the school community. Print the cards, fold over, and handwrite messages inside. Practice simple thank you notes on your own creative cards. Older students can use this tool to to create collages they can then annotate using a tools such as ThingLink, reviewed here.

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Fantastic Contraption - KONGREGATE

Grades
1 to 12
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Test out your logic, mechanical understanding, and creativity as you create amazing 2D contraptions! Each contraption uses wheels, wooden stationary logs, and power moving water rods...more
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Test out your logic, mechanical understanding, and creativity as you create amazing 2D contraptions! Each contraption uses wheels, wooden stationary logs, and power moving water rods to create a moving vehicle to push a target to the goal. Get a taste of the challenge by trying your hand at the introduction activity. Then begin your regular contraption. Each level adds more challenge. Use the delete button, and try again until you succeed. Registration is not required to use this site. However, more options are available if you register (FREE). As you progress through a level, earn points and badges. Save your designs and send your best designs to your friends using a specific url. You can turn off the (rather annoying) music by clicking the speaker icon.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): creativity (110), energy (199), gifted (96), inventors and inventions (97), logic (237), machines (30), motion (60), problem solving (273), STEM (135)

In the Classroom

In the classroom, develop logic, perseverance, and creativity for your gifted and high achieving students. These activities could be used with all learning levels. Use this activity as part of a unit on inventions or as a lead in to a Maker's Faire. Introduce this activity on your interactive whiteboard or projector and you will have all students hooked! Your ESL/ELL students and weaker readers will be on equal footing with their peers since this site requires very little reading after the introduction. Capture the attention of your students by gamifying science and logic. Continue with class discussions of movement, energy, logic, and strategy. Use as a stepping stone to begin a unit on geometry, energy, or motion. In elementary science classes, include this activity for students who have mastered required curriculum to go beyond the basics of simple machines and motion. Have students add a written explanation of the contraption to take sequencing to a new level. (A screenshot would help them illustrate their writing.) After drawing a scaled model, create the contraption using real objects. Discover the types of energy and movement that are in the model. Organize a contraption competition. Share this link on your class website for students (and their parents) to "tinker" with at home.
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OK2Ask'®: Specialized for Special Needs April 2014 - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional development session from April 2014, opens in Adobe Connect. Learn how to adapt your teaching for your students' special needs using...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional development session from April 2014, opens in Adobe Connect. Learn how to adapt your teaching for your students' special needs using TeachersFirst resources. Participants will view and explore tools to help students needing emotional support, learning support, speech/language support, autistic support, ESL assistance, and more. Find resources that promote organization, focus, and differentiated learning. Use exploration time to discover and discuss how selected resources can be utilized in your classroom. This session is for teachers at ALL technology comfort levels. As a result of this session and through individual follow-up, teachers will: Gather ideas by exploring at least 6 -10 specialized resources on TeachersFirst; Explore and practice with selected resources; Investigate and discuss lesson ideas offered in reviews and by other participants; List and discuss other curriculum related projects or activities that could be done using the resources in the teacher's own teaching situation; and (Follow-up) Implement one of the provided resources into an upcoming teaching unit or lesson. Applicable NETS-T standards (2008)*: 1a, b, c; 2a, b, c, d; 3b, c, d; 4c. Please read the full text at ISTE's NETS-T page

In the Classroom

Explore ideas to use with your learning support, autistic, ESL/ELL students, and other special needs. Take a look at the resource page full of GREAT ideas! Learn more about OK2Ask and upcoming sessions here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Skillwise - BBC

Grades
7 to 12
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Find extensive assistance for older ELL/ESL students with reading, writing, word forms, sentences, and speaking/listening activities. This site even includes some math skills. Explore...more
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Find extensive assistance for older ELL/ESL students with reading, writing, word forms, sentences, and speaking/listening activities. This site even includes some math skills. Explore the videos, activities, exercises, quizzes, and games to improve English. In addition to practice activities and interactives, the site contains tips and other help for tutors who work with students desiring to improve basic verbal and math skills. Although the site is aimed at adult survival skills, the basic learning required would be beneficial for most ELL/ESL students. At the time of this review, all content appeared appropriate for secondary students. However, always preview before you share - since activities were designed for adult learners. The site is created in the UK so spellings will vary from American English.

tag(s): capitalization (19), grammar (217), parts of speech (68), punctuation (43), reading strategies (46), sentences (52), spelling (169), verbs (41), writing (361)

In the Classroom

Bookmark (or save in your favorites) on your classroom computers for ESL/ELL students to use when they are working on their own. Pair up ESL students and native speakers, having the better English speakers follow the tutor guidelines. Learning Support teachers will find many activities suitable for middle and high school students to reinforce grammar and writing skills. Share this tool on your class website for ESL families to explore and learn together and for ALL students to use for extra practice.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Noisli - Stefano Merlo

Grades
K to 12
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Stressed? Unable to concentrate or complete a task? This tool will generate background sounds and colors to create a positive thinking environment! Choose from a variety of sounds that...more
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Stressed? Unable to concentrate or complete a task? This tool will generate background sounds and colors to create a positive thinking environment! Choose from a variety of sounds that sooth and relax while promoting creative productivity. These sounds are much better than plain, white noise. Classic sounds for relaxation include thunder, rain, waves, summer night, forest, white noise, and more. Even Coffee House is a sound that is the general hum of a business and not distracting to your work. As the music plays, the background color changes through a variety of harmonious colors to match the mood of the sound. Click on multiple sounds to create your own mix that is sure to please. Note: Be patient for the music to start, and be sure to click the icon again to stop it before choosing another sound if not mixing them. There is also a link to click and be taken to a blank writing page. (It may not be a white background though, but rather red, yellow, or green.) Click on the lines on the right side of the site to access the writing area. Click the arrow to SAVE your work. Use the music to inspire your writing.

tag(s): creative writing (166), learning styles (19), sounds (68)

In the Classroom

Be sure to share this link with students (and their parents) looking for less distracting sounds while brainstorming or working. Reading a book to the class or conducting a science lab? Turn up your speakers and use these background sounds as mood music to set the stage for your story. Why not listen to waves or water while studying it! Play a few minutes of relaxing sounds before a major test. Let a student "DJ" create a class relaxation or creativity soundscape. Consider using as background sounds for student presentations. Have students make a multimedia presentation using one of the many TeachersFirst Edge tools reviewed here. Use the writing tool available at this site to motivate your students with music, color, and more. If you talk with students about discovering their own learning styles, offer this site as a suggestion for them to try while prewriting or studying for tests. Emotional support (and autistic support) teachers may want to experiment to see if these sounds can help their students. Some students may find them overstimulating, while others may find the sounds very helpful.

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Writing Reviser - SAS Curriculum Pathways

Grades
6 to 12
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Writing Reviser is a powerful, kid friendly writing revision tool, and it's FREE! Watch a two minute video to get an overview. Check out the demo to learn how to ...more
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Writing Reviser is a powerful, kid friendly writing revision tool, and it's FREE! Watch a two minute video to get an overview. Check out the demo to learn how to use the features and how to revise your writing. You do have to join to be able to see anything beyond the general demo video. Once logged in, you can paste in an essay, explaining your intended audience and purpose. There is automated feedback about organization, style, and grammar. See statistics about your writing and discover things to improve and revise. You can delve into very specific aspects of your writing, such as verbs, pronouns, cliches, sentence variety, power sentences, and much more. The explanations are a little bit text-heavy, but they are very helpful. There is also free access to the Writing Planner and Writing Drafter from this tool. Explore the entire writing process at your fingertips!

tag(s): editing (62), process writing (43), writing (361)

In the Classroom

Give students the benefits of immediate feedback. Use this formative tool to help students focus on their purpose, audience, structure, and use of language (sentence economy, variety, power, and clarity). Start with whole-group instruction by projecting the demo, and work on one strategy at a time. Suggest individual areas for each student or let each one decide on an area of personal writing "need." You might want to start with Sentence Power (verbs). Show students the "About" and how to change "was" to an active verb. Allow students time to work on their own sentence power before moving to the next revision strategy or letting them choose another. Once the students know the program, use it for peer conferences or at home on their own time. Once you set up your account, enroll your students with your school. Their parents can also set up an individual student account. In 2014, SAS plans to develop a teacher "dashboard."

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My Study Life - Virblue

Grades
7 to 12
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My Study Life is a web-based and mobile app for a student to manage classes, tasks, and assignments. Features include tracking tasks, adding exam dates, managing classes, and notification...more
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My Study Life is a web-based and mobile app for a student to manage classes, tasks, and assignments. Features include tracking tasks, adding exam dates, managing classes, and notification reminders of upcoming events. Enroll through email, Facebook, or Google. Once enrolled, add course schedules to set up a schedule. After entering courses, add tasks with due dates or exam dates. All tasks and information displays on the homepage along with approaching due dates. My Study Life shows both tasks completed and unfinished.

tag(s): DAT device agnostic tool (159), organizational skills (121)

In the Classroom

Start the school year off by sharing this tool with students for planning homework assignments, tasks, and exam dates. Create an account to share with your learning support teacher and specialists to collaborate and know upcoming events in each other's classrooms. Share with parents as an option for student use. Use this site personally to keep yourself organized! If you have students aged 13 and up, encourage them to choose a consistent planning tool like this one to stay organized. Share this site with gifted elementary students to help them stay organized and manage their life. Promote organizational skills with your learning support or gifted learners.

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