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The Book Drum - Book Drum, Ltd.

Grades
5 to 12
8 Favorites 0  Comments
  
Book Drum has the ultimate in book reviews and more for classic and contemporary fiction and nonfiction. Reviews are so colossally informative that Book Drum calls them "profiles" instead...more
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Book Drum has the ultimate in book reviews and more for classic and contemporary fiction and nonfiction. Reviews are so colossally informative that Book Drum calls them "profiles" instead of reviews. All types of readers will enjoy the interactive, visual content and attention to detail. Each "profile" has what you would expect: a summary, author information, and a review. However, that is where the "normal" stops and the colossal will begin. Some of the pages also include videos, gorgeous photos with captions and explanations, and maps of the area. The glossary defines difficult, unusual, and world language vocabulary. The most impressive feature is the Bookmarks. This is a page-by-page commentary and illustrations of the text. Head over to Book Drum and type in your favorite book title to see how informative it is. If your favorite book that is not on Book Drum, contact them and ask for a "profile" to be created or volunteer to create one for them as a contributor. Some of the videos require Flash.

tag(s): authors (120), book lists (128), book reports (35), independent reading (128), novels (24), writers workshop (31)

In the Classroom

Whether you are a high school class studying "To Kill a Mockingbird" or an elementary teacher reading Roald Dahl's "Mathilda" with your class, you will want to share with the excellent research that has gone into the "Bookmark" pages at Book Drum. For instance, in the first 25 pages Dahl's "Mathilda" mention the novels or the authors of "The Secret Garden," "Great Expectations," "A Moveable Feast," "Heart of Darkness," "Secret Agent," and "Kim." You will find explanations about the books and authors and links for more information. This is a powerful way to introduce young readers to the classics, the authors who wrote them, and general background knowledge.

If you run a reading/writing workshop with your middle or high school students or want to promote books in your library media center, introduce students to "Twilight," "The Graveyard Book" (Neil Gaiman), or any other contemporary book to help satisfy their curiosity about the places and information mentioned. If Book Drum doesn't have a "profile" on the book your literature circles are reading, have your students create a final project modeled on the Book Drum example. Use a wiki for student groups to collaborate on book profile pages. To learn more about using wikis in your classroom, check out the TeachersFirst Wiki Walk-Through. Another good program for nonfiction literature circle projects is Meograph, (reviewed here).
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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MindMup: Zero-friction online mind mapping - Gojko Adzic, Damjan Vujnovic, David de Florinier

Grades
K to 12
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MindMup is an easy to use mind mapping tool. Click to create a new map. Double click the starter bubble to add your title. Use the tool box (left sidebar) ...more
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MindMup is an easy to use mind mapping tool. Click to create a new map. Double click the starter bubble to add your title. Use the tool box (left sidebar) to add or edit ideas. Use the mouse to drag and drop nodes. The mouse can also be used to scroll the map (drag the central node, or anywhere outside the map). As soon as you change a map, the Save button appears in the toolbar. Click it and your new map gets a unique URL. Every time you save, the map gets a new URL. Just copy and share the URL with colleagues and friends. You can also use one of the options in the Share toolbar (top-right) to send it to a social networking site. Anyone can edit the map, but won't change your original copy. The best part of this simple/easy site: no registration required!

tag(s): concept mapping (22), graphic organizers (43), mind map (25), organizational skills (122)

In the Classroom

This free organizational tool can be used in classrooms at every level. Use this tool to help organize learning units and share the organization on screen so students see how pieces fit together. Share the unit map with other teachers, students, or parents. Highlight goals, objectives, learning tasks, assessments, and resources. Share before your unit, and expectations become very clear. Use as a yearly overview for parents at the beginning of the year at Open House. Let parents see the multiple ways their child will be assessed through the year. Have students use this tool for direction in problem based learning situations. Use this tool in science for collecting data, experiments, or science fair outlines. Use the tool in writing class to make writing guides for narrative or expository writing. In reading use for predictions, sequencing of stories, inferences, or organizing genres of books each student has read. Have students map multiple ways to solve a single problem in math class. Have students keep daily requirements or schedules with readily available resources as links. Let students enjoy taking notes from content based classes. Have a student scribe create the notes each day and share with the class. Have student groups map the current unit before the test as a review activity. Or use an ongoing map as a whole class visual diagram of concepts learned, adding new knowledge throughout a unit. Don't miss the chance to color code to "sort" ideas and concepts!

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Learn American English Online - Learn American English Online

Grades
2 to 12
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This comprehensive English program offers complete ESL/ELL instruction on seven levels. The units/lessons are color-coded. The focus of the lessons is mostly on grammar. Blue for example...more
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This comprehensive English program offers complete ESL/ELL instruction on seven levels. The units/lessons are color-coded. The focus of the lessons is mostly on grammar. Blue for example focuses on "be," prepositions, this/that/these/those, and many other topics. You must be able to read and write English to successfully benefit from this website. Each color/level has more than 20 lessons, quizzes, tests, dialogues, and reading. Many of the lessons have an audio clip or a video (or a Voki) to illustrate the level. Answers are provided for the quizzes. Extras include a pronouncing dictionary (found under Vocabulary), extra video lessons, extra information on pronunciation, and extras in each level. The levels also contain reviews and checklists. Many of the videos are hosted on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable. You could always view the videos at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid reviewed here to download the videos from YouTube.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): dictionaries (56), grammar (216), grammar review (37), listening (91), pronunciation (44)

In the Classroom

Check this site if you need a quick grammar review of any topic. Share this site on your interactive whiteboard/projector. Provide a link to this site on your class webpage. Many of these lessons would be useful with non-ESL/ELL students, as well. It is easy to scroll through the lessons in each color-coded level. Put a link to this site on classroom computers and send it home with ESL/ELL students in school newsletters to share with their parents.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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TV411 - Reading - Education Development Center, Inc.

Grades
6 to 12
5 Favorites 1  Comments
  
Find entertaining videos, web lessons, and downloads to support learning about reading comprehension, test prep, and libraries and books at TV411. Each video includes a short description...more
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Find entertaining videos, web lessons, and downloads to support learning about reading comprehension, test prep, and libraries and books at TV411. Each video includes a short description of contents, then just click to view the video. Below the video text includes skills addressed. For example, the video Dorothea Lange, Photographer addresses the skill of reading pictures. Skills addressed include summarizing, point of view, newspapers, highlighting, and study skills. Most videos are approximately three to five minutes long and include links to related web lessons and print-ables to download. Although this site was originally created for adult English language learners, it would be useful with all secondary students.

tag(s): context clues (8), maps (287), news (261), newspapers (94), poetry (228), point of view (9), summarizing (13), word study (80)

In the Classroom

View videos on your interactive whiteboard as part of your reading comprehension or study skills unit. Use on an as-needed basis to address classroom deficiencies in particular areas. Have students complete the web lessons on their own during computer center time. Create links to certain videos on your class website or blog for students to view at home. Check out the Teachers portion of the site to find activities for improving or introducing skills along with ideas for using the videos in the classroom. Challenge students to create a talking avatar using a photo or other image (legally permitted to be reproduced). The avatars can be used to provide suggestions for study skills and improving reading comprehension. Use a site such as Blabberize, reviewed here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

Comments

This is an excellent site with a variety of short videos for concept instruction. Patricia, NJ, Grades: 6 - 12

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English Grammar Express - englishgrammarexpress

Grades
4 to 12
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Find many useful grammar lessons with practice exercises for ESL/ELL students at this site created and maintained by English teachers. The lessons are well organized and illustrated,...more
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Find many useful grammar lessons with practice exercises for ESL/ELL students at this site created and maintained by English teachers. The lessons are well organized and illustrated, with some in video format. The video lessons include grammar and comprehension questions (and answers). A newly added search feature allows you to look for exactly the lesson and subject you need. At the bottom of the page, there are links to related lessons. You also can print out entire lessons in PDF form. The opening page shares a "New Lesson" feature and links to other practical lessons. Some of the lesson topics include grammar mistakes, future tense, revision & comprehension, stative verbs, prepositions, plurals, party conversation, job interview information, and many more. Also featured on the "Ask Us" page are questions other teachers might have. If your district blocks YouTube, some of the video clips 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.Caution: at least one of the YouTube videos on the homepage was blocked due to copyright issues at the time of this review. Note that spellings are British, but this would only affect the usefulness of a few lessons for U.S. teachers and students.

tag(s): grammar (216), idioms (44), reading comprehension (116), verbs (41)

In the Classroom

Check here for the grammar lesson you have in mind, including for individual help for some ELL students. Many of the topics, such as verb agreement, are suitable for any English/Language Arts class. You may find helpful exercises, illustrations, or even a video to demonstrate what you plan to teach. Share the lesson on your interactive whiteboard or projector or as an individual task for certain students. Introduce your grammar lesson with one of the featured conversations which have a grammar focus. Challenge students to create their own grammar lesson using clips form YouTube (if permitted at your school) or try Dailymotion, if that site is permitted. Have students use ClipNabber reviewed here to grab favorite clips from online video sources such as YouTube and Dailymotion quickly and easily.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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The Readability Test Tool - Dave Taylor

Grades
K to 12
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Find readability scores for web pages and word documents in an instant! Upload a word document or enter a site url to begin. Readability tests include Kincaid, ARI, and five ...more
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Find readability scores for web pages and word documents in an instant! Upload a word document or enter a site url to begin. Readability tests include Kincaid, ARI, and five other indexes. View sentence info such as total characters, number of words, average word length, percentage of short and long sentences, and more. View word usage of types of verbs, conjunctions, and other parts of speech as well as type of words used to begin sentences. Click the link provided to view an explanation of each type of score.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): independent reading (128), readability (8), reading comprehension (116)

In the Classroom

Upload word documents to view instant feedback on readability, including the directions you write for assignments. Challenge students to make changes to their own writing and increase sophistication of their writing to a level appropriate for their own grade. Talk about how readability works: the types of sentences that make a passage "higher" level, sentence length, etc. Test passages of public domain texts from sites like Project Gutenberg, reviewed here, by famous authors to see how their writing ranks when discussing their writing style. View readability levels of websites before sharing with students to find appropriate reading levels for differentiation.

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Learning Edge - Wellington County Learning Center

Grades
3 to 12
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This online newspaper, designed for ELL/ESL students and adult learners, offers stories on a variety of topics. Topics in the issues include sports, heroes, current events, health,...more
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This online newspaper, designed for ELL/ESL students and adult learners, offers stories on a variety of topics. Topics in the issues include sports, heroes, current events, health, computer usage, and writing. The twelve available issues let you to hear the chosen story read aloud as it highlights words. There are also word work exercises and interactives related to each story. Listen again to any portion of the story as many times as you wish. Difficult words are highlighted and underlined. A click leads to a pronouncing dictionary so you can see the definition and hear the word pronounced. Some of the issues are appropriate for those pursuing vocational careers. Find them under Workplace. This site also offers you practice in writing and the option to submit your own writing for future issues.

tag(s): careers (132), descriptive writing (41), newspapers (94)

In the Classroom

If you work with ESL/ELL students, this is definitely a site to bookmark or save in your favorites! It would also work well with learning support students who need support reading informational texts. Share various segments of this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Allow students to peruse on their own (using earbuds). This is a great tool to use to differentiate for your ESL/ELL students' various levels. Spend some time exploring this site to find articles/activities applicable to your students. Be sure to check school policies to see if students can submit their own articles. Use this newspaper as a model for ESL/ELL students to create their own class newspaper. Have students collaborate on an online newspaper following the model of the site. Use a tool such as Crocodoc reviewed here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Vocabulary Web Games - Sheppard Software

Grades
2 to 12
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Enjoy language arts interactives suited for elementary students through adult learners at Vocabulary Web Games. Elementary activities offer review of grammar and punctuation...more
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Enjoy language arts interactives suited for elementary students through adult learners at Vocabulary Web Games. Elementary activities offer review of grammar and punctuation concepts. Activities include Magical Capitals, Comma Chameleon, Adjective Adventure, and more. More advanced (secondary+) activities include practice SAT and GRE prep vocabulary, medical vocabulary, and computer vocabulary using a flash card format. Play word games such as word scramble and hangman with other interactive games on this site.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): capitalization (19), grammar (216), parts of speech (68), puzzles (208), test prep (96), verbs (41), vocabulary (324), vocabulary development (126)

In the Classroom

Create links to games and practice vocabulary on classroom computers for students to practice language arts skills. Have students preparing for the SAT/ACT or GRE take vocabulary quizzes to find unknown words. Complement this site by creating your own vocabulary flash cards using an online flashcard maker, like Flashcard Stash (reviewed here).
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Freebook Sifter - FreebookSifter

Grades
K to 12
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Explore this useful catalog of all free e-books available for Kindles through Amazon. It is quite extensive with many categories: Advice & How-to, Biographies & Memoirs, Business &...more
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Explore this useful catalog of all free e-books available for Kindles through Amazon. It is quite extensive with many categories: Advice & How-to, Biographies & Memoirs, Business & Investing, Children's eBooks, Fantasy, History, Literary Fiction, Mystery & Thrillers, Politics & Current Events, Reference, Religion & Spirituality, Science, Science Fiction, Sports, Teens, Travel, and many others. At the time of this review, there were over 69,000 free eBooks listed on the site.

tag(s): book lists (128), independent reading (128)

In the Classroom

This site is a helpful classroom reference tool. Save this link on your classroom computers. Find books to use at learning stations, especially if you are a BYOD (Bring your own Device) school. Be sure to provide this link on your class website for students to use at home. The books available include all those in the public domain and titles whose authors have granted permission for free dispersal.

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ESL Games World - eslgamesworld.com

Grades
1 to 12
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ESL Game World is the place to go for interactives, PowerPoint activities and templates, printable board games, ESL/ELL games for kids and adults, grammar games, vocabulary challenges,...more
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ESL Game World is the place to go for interactives, PowerPoint activities and templates, printable board games, ESL/ELL games for kids and adults, grammar games, vocabulary challenges, and reading activities. Some of the featured activities include Snakes and Ladders, Hangman, and Wheel of Fortune games/templates. Some spelling appears to be different from Standard American English. Check to be sure. Avoid the online store section to stay with free activities.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): grammar (216), grammar review (37), verbs (41), vocabulary (324)

In the Classroom

Find ways to assist your ESL/ELL students in an engaging way! You can also use many of the games to reinforce basic skills with native speakers. Customize some of the activities for the content areas you are studying. Use as a whole class activity on your projector (or interactive whiteboard) to practice vocabulary, grammar, and content. Add as a resource for ESL/ELL learning or even struggling readers. Ideas and materials are gathered in one spot to help you reduce the time you need to meet your ESL/ELL students' differentiated needs. Add this link to your class website or share with parents as a resource.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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The Noun Project - The Noun Project

Grades
K to 12
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Find free, scalable vector images created by a community of designers whose goal is to create a universal global language of symbols that everyone can understand. Vector files are images...more
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Find free, scalable vector images created by a community of designers whose goal is to create a universal global language of symbols that everyone can understand. Vector files are images that do not change or become fuzzy when you resize them. Communicating visually is powerful and easy using symbols like these. Move beyond language and cultural barriers in learning and communicating by using these symbols. You must set up a free account to actually download. Note: Many programs cannot use the file format (SVG) but some programs, such as Adobe Illustrator, can. Don't have a program to open the image? Download the image, then upload to the Media Converter (reviewed here) to convert the image. No need to open the file- just convert! Note that the use of these vector images is FREE if the artist(s) attribution is easily viewable and accessible (linked back to the artist's page on the Noun Project site). Many images are in the public domain with no attribution required. Ethical use would still give credit. If you do not want to attribute each time it is used, icons can be purchased for unlimited use instead. Be patient. This site is often SLOW to open and offers slow downloads because of the larger image files.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): digital storytelling (144), graphic design (35), images (266), infographics (42), stories and storytelling (33)

In the Classroom

The symbols are useful for autistic support, emotional support, ESL/ELL, and even in world languages. Use these vector diagrams for creating infographics and pictograms in any content area. Use a site such as Easel.ly, reviewed here or Venngage reviewed here. Challenge students to tell a rebus-style story using simple symbols only. This is a fun and imaginative way for students to think creatively. Use these symbols to create classroom signs. Teach students digital citizenship along with creativity by learning to give credit for resources used as they explain. Try using icons like these in the navigation area of a wiki or class website instead of words to increase the accessibility to others. Be sure to include this site as a list of resources for students to use on your wiki or class website. Students can access images to tell their story or to relate/teach content to others. Encourage students to create their own symbols for use in telling a story (great if students have access to programs that can create vector images). Special ed teachers may want to use these symbols on communication boards. Note: since file downloads are slow, you may want to download a collection for your specific lesson or project outside of class time and offer the files to students locally in a shared folder or on a class wiki. Teachers of non-readers will find these symbols useful in making classroom rules or signs.

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Shutter Cal - ShutterCal.com

Grades
K to 12
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ShutterCal is a photo-based calendar site. Sign-up and upload an image each day to view a beautiful photo calendar created from your own images. Create an account using email, password,...more
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ShutterCal is a photo-based calendar site. Sign-up and upload an image each day to view a beautiful photo calendar created from your own images. Create an account using email, password, and user name. Click on the date, upload an image, add a caption, then submit. ShutterCal resizes the image and places it into the calendar. Share your calendar using the unique url provided. Embed into your website or blog using the code offered under the "My stuff" link. Premium features allow your calendar to be private; however, that isn't included with the free membership. This is a public site that isn't moderated. So preview any other calendars you plan to share.

tag(s): calendars (44), images (266)

In the Classroom

What a wonderful way to share your school year! Create a ShutterCal calendar to embed into your classroom blog or website. Forget a day? No problem, just click on the date and upload as usual. Have your student of the week be responsible for taking pictures for that week's calendar (and for uploading if savvy). This is a public site and content is not moderated. Take precautions when allowing students to view other calendars. In primary grades, a teacher can prepare a calendar for parents to access at home and have children talk about what they have learned. During science units, document the plants you grow or the labs you do using images on a daily calendar. Speech/language or ESL/ELL teachers can create calendars together with students to provide ways to practice oral language retelling events. Teacher-librarians can create calendars with a book a day or research questions shown as images.

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Trace Effects - U.S. Department of State

Grades
7 to 12
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The U.S. Department of State designed this interactive game to help ESL/ELL learners to learn American English. However, many non-ESL/ELL students could greatly benefit (and enjoy)...more
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The U.S. Department of State designed this interactive game to help ESL/ELL learners to learn American English. However, many non-ESL/ELL students could greatly benefit (and enjoy) this highly interactive experience and look at U.S. culture. Download Unity Player to begin. Registration is free, but does require an email address. Begin your mission with Trace, a teen back in time from the year 2045. Help Trace return to his regular time by completing several challenges. Trace must follow directions (called objectives) on each screen. He travels to 8 separate locations around the U.S. Learn about entrepreneurship, community activism, empowering women, science and innovation, environmental conservation, and conflict resolution. Travel to Kansas, New Orleans, the Grand Canyon, New York City, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C. Complete 28 practice activities. You will also find 4 multi-player practice challenges, 7 graphic novels for extension activities, and an American English dictionary integration activity. The game is so involved, that you will not even realize that you are also learning English.

tag(s): communities (35), conflict resolution (8), conservation (127), cross cultural understanding (115), women (101)

In the Classroom

This site offers a window on American culture that you can use in comparing cultures. It is a great way to engage ESL/ELL teens as they practice English skills. Since the State Department created it, an AP Civics or Government class might even want to critique or discuss its portrayal of U.S. culture. Have ESL/ELL students work on individual laptops and explore this site alone or with a partner. Provide this link for students to access both in and out of the classroom. Challenge your students to collaboratively write the dialogue for an additional visit Trace might make to a community near you using Google Docs/Drive reviewed here. Your more technologically savvy students may like to create another version of a Trace visit to go along with the dialog! In a world language class, have students work collaboratively to create a visit to a cultural site using this game as a model.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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TV411 - Vocabulary - Education Development Center, Inc.

Grades
4 to 12
2 Favorites 0  Comments
  
Find entertaining videos, web lessons, and downloads to support learning about dictionaries, thesaurus, and "How Words Work." Each video includes a short description of content and...more
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Find entertaining videos, web lessons, and downloads to support learning about dictionaries, thesaurus, and "How Words Work." Each video includes a short description of content and the skills addressed. Most videos are approximately three minutes long and include links to related web lessons and print downloads. This site was originally created for adult basic literacy students. However, many of these lessons could be useful with younger students learning the basics of vocabulary. Preview the video for appropriateness before sharing with younger students.

tag(s): antonyms (26), dictionaries (56), prefixes (16), reading comprehension (116), root words (13), spelling (168), suffixes (14), synonyms (38), thesaurus (24), vocabulary (324), vocabulary development (126), word study (80)

In the Classroom

Any vocabulary development unit needs to include lessons about how dictionaries and thesaurus' work. View videos on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) as part of your dictionary/word-study unit. Use on an as-needed basis to address classroom deficiencies in particular areas. Have students complete the web lessons on their own during computer center time. Create links to particular videos on your class website or blog for students to view at home. Check out the Teachers portion of the site to find activities for specific skills along with ideas for using the videos in the classroom. Challenge students to create a talking avatar using a photo or other image (legally permitted to be reproduced). The avatars can be used to provide suggestions on improving vocabulary and writing skills. Use a site such as Blabberize, reviewed here.
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Simple English News - simpleenglishnews

Grades
4 to 12
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Simple English News is a site that has very short articles about items from all over the world. It also features English in 30-Seconds videos on news topics and ...more
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Simple English News is a site that has very short articles about items from all over the world. It also features English in 30-Seconds videos on news topics and language oddities like slang and idioms. In addition, there are quizzes, participatory polls, written and oral interviews, recipes, and many other selections. This is not a site for breaking or controversial news. Besides appealing to ESL/ELL students, this site would work well with resource classes. Please remember to preview anything you wish to share, to be sure the content is appropriate for your classroom. Some of the videos are hosted on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable. You could always view the videos at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid reviewed here to download the videos from YouTube.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): grammar (216), news (261), video (254)

In the Classroom

Share the video clips on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Check with this site to see if it has a feature on a grammar or vocabulary lesson you are preparing. Check with your administration about the feasibility of students registering to participate in polls and make comments on news articles. Refer students to the article about five special apps for learning English.
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Find a Word You Can't Spell - TV411

Grades
5 to 12
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Students are often in a quandary about finding words in a dictionary they do not know how to spell. Share this video and they will enjoy the humorous banter between ...more
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Students are often in a quandary about finding words in a dictionary they do not know how to spell. Share this video and they will enjoy the humorous banter between two friends while learning to find a word they cannot spell. One needs to find a word he cannot spell, and the other gives several demonstrations of just how to use the dictionary without knowing the exact spelling for a word. Although TV411 was originally created for adult English Language students, this video could be useful in any secondary English classroom.

tag(s): dictionaries (56), spelling (168)

In the Classroom

Use this video as an introduction to dictionary skills. ESL/ELL students will benefit from this introduction to puzzling spelling and the use of phonetics, as well. Have students create their own comics to explain other phonetic hints they want to share with classmates such as the "ph" sounds like "f" illustration from the video. Have students create an online or printed comic using one of the tools and ideas included in this collection.
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Synonyms and Antonyms - TV411

Grades
5 to 12
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A poet uses one of his creations to explain the usage and choice of appropriate synonyms and antonyms. He refers the listener to the thesaurus to try the same technique ...more
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A poet uses one of his creations to explain the usage and choice of appropriate synonyms and antonyms. He refers the listener to the thesaurus to try the same technique he demonstrated. The tv411 videos were originally created for the adult English language learner, however, they could be useful to all secondary students. Please preview any video clip that you wish to share.

tag(s): antonyms (26), poetry (228), synonyms (38)

In the Classroom

Use this video clip as an introduction to word study and synonym and antonym usage. Share the video on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Challenge students to create a word cloud of synonyms and antonyms they might use, using a tool such as Wordle reviewed here. Have students write a simple poem and then several iterations using their new found synonym and antonym knowledge.
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What's a Thesaurus? - Education Development Center

Grades
5 to 12
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This short video creates a situation where it is necessary to choose synonyms to avoid using the same word repeated times. It goes on to explain how to use a ...more
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This short video creates a situation where it is necessary to choose synonyms to avoid using the same word repeated times. It goes on to explain how to use a conventional thesaurus. It uses the overly repeated word from the first situation to examine a thesaurus entry, and it explains how to know which group of thesaurus words to choose from. Although tv411 was originally created for English language learners (mainly adults), much of the content would be useful with secondary students. Preview the video before you share with your class.

tag(s): dictionaries (56), thesaurus (24)

In the Classroom

Use as an introduction to the thesaurus when teaching dictionary skills. Click on a related, non-video lesson on "Finding New Ways to Say Something" for more ideas about how to teach thesaurus skills.
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Pictolang - Michael R. Shaughnessy

Grades
5 to 12
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Pictolang offers four image-based language/culture learning activities. Visual Word Trainer provides flashcards with images and the word it represents from a choice of several languages...more
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Pictolang offers four image-based language/culture learning activities. Visual Word Trainer provides flashcards with images and the word it represents from a choice of several languages (Arabic, French, Italian, German, Japanese, Spanish, and more). Choose your language and the type of photos you wish to find. Picture Match offers a word with an assortment of images to match correctly. Word Match is the opposite of Picture Match - one image is offered with several words. Choose the correct word to match the image. Both of these activities also ask you to choose the language. The most difficult game is the Analyst Game. This activity "tests your visual intelligence." One image is presented, you choose the correct culture represented by the image. (Try it - not as easy as it sounds!)

tag(s): arabic (20), chinese (48), cross cultural understanding (115), french (88), german (64), images (266), italian (33), japanese (42), maps (287), spanish (108)

In the Classroom

Use Pictolang to help students learn and review languages on their own. This is a perfect site for ESL/ELL students, world cultures class, and world language studies. Display the Analyst Game on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) and play together as a class or as a small group center. Discuss images featured and why they represent different cultures. Allow ESL/ELL students to explore the site using the ESL (North America) option to match images to the English word. This is a great link to add to your class website for world language (or ESL/ELL) students to use for additional practice.

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Persuasion Across Time and Space Lesson Plan - Stanford University Graduate School of Education

Grades
6 to 12
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Stanford's Understanding Language offers this free five-lesson unit plan for English Language Learners on persuasive writing. Although geared towards middle school students, it could...more
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Stanford's Understanding Language offers this free five-lesson unit plan for English Language Learners on persuasive writing. Although geared towards middle school students, it could be useful with high schoolers as well. Each lesson includes an overview of content and goals for the end of lesson. Download the introduction and each of the five lessons using the PDF links provided. All lessons include correlations to Common Core standards and take approximately 4 to 5 days to complete. Each lesson includes all necessary handouts and assessment suggestions. Lesson topics relate to important events and people from American history: Gettysburg Address, civil rights, and others.

tag(s): advertising (33), civil rights (117), gettysburg address (18), martin luther king (37), persuasive writing (55), speeches (17)

In the Classroom

Print and use lessons (or portions of lessons) in your classroom. Although geared toward middle school ESL/ELL students, these materials can be adapted and used for any middle and high school students. Challenge your students to write their own persuasive writing pieces. Use this site to teach about historical events in America's past (Gettysburg Address, civil rights, Martin Luther King Jr, and more).
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