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Flubaroo - Flubaroo.com

Grades
4 to 12
6 Favorites 1  Comments
   
Use the Flubaroo add-on tool with Google docs for an easy way to create self grading documents and forms. Be sure to check out their 3 minute demo video and ...more
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Use the Flubaroo add-on tool with Google docs for an easy way to create self grading documents and forms. Be sure to check out their 3 minute demo video and overview links to understand how easy it is to use. Flubaroo provides easy to use step by step directions. Use this tool for multiple choice type answers for an easy way to receive feedback. Students easily see their responses to the questions when grades are emailed providing feedback.

tag(s): assessment (100), quiz (85), quizzes (97)

In the Classroom

Users must be familiar with Google documents and forms. You must also have a Google account (FREE). Follow the demo and overview to become acquainted with this tool. This tool is best used by teachers for ongoing formative assessment. If allowing students to create formative assessments, be sure to create a separate class Google and Flubaroo account for use. Consider assigning groups to to make daily quizzes for the whole class to take as an ongoing formative assessment. Use for check point quizzes to check on terminology, general understanding, and to identify weaknesses in student understanding. Be sure to save this site in your favorites to use professionally to save time and keep your learning tasks organized.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

Comments

I would be curious to know how good you have to be with Google docs to be able to use this. Sounds like a summer project for me! Thinking, PA, Grades: 5 - 10

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Big Huge Labs - Big Huge Labs

Grades
K to 12
2 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Check Teachers First reviews for specific fun and creative tools from this expansive site. As Big Huge Labs continues to expand upon their offerings, be sure to check back to ...more
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Check Teachers First reviews for specific fun and creative tools from this expansive site. As Big Huge Labs continues to expand upon their offerings, be sure to check back to the main page of the site to find what is new. Be sure to check out the Trading Card Maker reviewed here, the CD Cover Maker reviewed here, The Big Huge Thesaurus reviewed here, and many others! Take time to play with some of these tools before sharing the site with students. Many of these tools are more suitable for play than a valuable tool for demonstrating student knowledge.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): collages (17), images (266), maps (287), multimedia (57), photography (160), thesaurus (24)

In the Classroom

It is helpful to have a Flickr account to organize photos. Users must be able to find and upload/provide the URL of a specific photo. This tool is so simple with very little steps for creating. Simply upload your photo, select from a few options, and then create.

Check out the Big Huge Labs educator account. Easily pre-register students to avoid creating logins, view and download their creations, and view the site advertisement free. You will find information about the Educator Account here.

Options here are endless. Find out what students understand about a concept by creating a 6 word story. Students find a suitable picture and sum up the concept in 6 words. Students can use the Motivator tool reviewed here to create. Place their creation on a blog, wiki, or site and have students write about how their understandings of the concept have changed throughout the study of it. Create Badges for field trips and other activities. Use the Trading Card Maker reviewed here to identify what a student understands about a concept. Create trading cards of the many species that exist in the world or of places to visit, past leaders of nations, or states and other countries. Create vocabulary trading cards. Use social networking in the classroom? Create an Avatar to use on these spaces. Reading a book or viewing documentaries? Create Movie Posters to share information or to inform others about various times in History. Whatever you use this tool for, it is powerful for students to use a great image and word captions to display their knowledge.

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Photo Timelines - LIFE - Life Magazine

Grades
6 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
 
This site allows you to view, create, and share interactive timelines. Browse timelines from the 1900s (or before) through the present on various topics and current events. Scroll to...more
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This site allows you to view, create, and share interactive timelines. Browse timelines from the 1900s (or before) through the present on various topics and current events. Scroll to the bottom of the page to search by decade. A series of pictures centered around a theme in a specific time period accompanies a short summary of what is happening in the picture. There is also the option to create your own unique timeline and share it by URL or by embedding in your class blog, wiki, or web page. Click "Log-In To Life" to get started creating your own timeline. To create a timeline you MUST register at the site. Login requires a Facebook, Twitter, Google, or Yahoo account.

tag(s): timelines (62)

In the Classroom

If you only plan to VIEW timelines, no extra skills are needed. Step by step directions are provided. You will also need to choose a username to create your timeline.

There are many uses for the ready-made timelines: use your interactive whiteboard or projector to learn about historical events, research literature, learn about different decades and events throughout the world, and more. Have students create timelines for research projects using Photo Timelines. Use this tool to make a timeline of your class,''''?,"'''? school year for younger classes who are just learning the graphical representation of time. Create author biographies, animal life cycles, or timelines of events and causes of wars. Challenge students to create a timeline of the plot of a novel, interspersed with the ways themes appear throughout the novel. If you teach chemistry, have students create illustrated sequences explaining oxidation or reduction (or both). Elementary students could even interview grandparents and create a class timeline about their grandparents,''''?,"'''? generation for Grandparents' Day. Why not create a timeline highlighting students' family events for a special gift for Mother's Day, Father's Day, or other holidays? You may need to assign students to do some investigative work first (years of births, marriages, vacations, etc.). In world language classes, have students create a timeline of their family in the language to master vocabulary about relatives, jobs, and more (and verb tenses!). Students can learn about photo selection, detail writing, chronological order, and photo digitization while creating the timelines of their choice. Making a timeline is also a good way to review history and cultural developments.

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Penzu: Write in Private - Alexander Mimran and Michael Lawlor

Grades
4 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Penzu offers a FREE service to write journals or diaries online with exceptional privacy options. As an added benefit, you can add images or your own artwork as illustrations. There...more
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Penzu offers a FREE service to write journals or diaries online with exceptional privacy options. As an added benefit, you can add images or your own artwork as illustrations. There is a very short demo video on the home page. On Penzu you can keep everything completely private or share selective posts by email or URL. Perhaps share selections on a class wiki page? Don't have a wiki? See the TeachersFirst Wiki Walk-Through for practical management and safety tips for a class wiki. Note: Premium service is available, but this review is for the free version.

tag(s): DAT device agnostic tool (199), homework (44), journals (21), writing (359)

In the Classroom

A class journaling program has limitless possibilities. Engage students in discussions using a topic from current events, current social issues, independent reading, literature, and more. Any class using a journal can use Penzu. For example, science lab write ups or the problem of the week in math. Penzu can even be used for homework. Just think, no more lugging heavy boxes full of notebooks around! In language arts have students journal daily and harvest from their musings and ideas to create a short story or a poem. They can even use Penzu to develop their brainstorms and rough draft. Once they are ready to present a final project have them use Bookemon reviewed here reviewed here or Glogster reviewed here to share with their peers and others and possibly add other media. For social studies classes, students can write posts and ideas about famous people or daily life in a time period being studied, then create a "diary" for the famous person in Bookemon or a poster about daily life in Glogster reviewed here. See more ideas for student blogging/journaling at TeachersFirst's Blogging Basics for the Classroom. Share journals with parents as appropriate by URL. Be sure to respect student privacy before sharing.

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Pictures of the Floating World - National Gallery of Victoria

Grades
5 to 12
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At Floating World your students will do more than create a video of their own story. They will learn about Japanese history and culture through the explanations of the classic ...more
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At Floating World your students will do more than create a video of their own story. They will learn about Japanese history and culture through the explanations of the classic Japanese art work. There is a demonstration video to show students how to make their own movie and a pdf file to download 64 cards so students can work together to rough out story ideas before starting their animation. On each page of the site you will also find a button marked "Add this page." This allows you to build a useful resource to map out a story.

tag(s): art history (70), drawing (78), folktales (65)

In the Classroom

You will have to know how to type and drag and drop the images, backgrounds, and sounds you want in your animated story.

When saving the video you are also asked for your name. You will want to give the students a code to use instead of their name.

Use this site to make animated short stories in any content area. Have students create new events for a literary character or tell the story of a famous person. Post student work to your classroom website or blog for students to use at home for review and for parents to view. Be sure to share the presentations on your projector or interactive whiteboard at school.

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Weebly - Weebly

Grades
2 to 12
2 Favorites 0  Comments
   
Weebly is an easy, free website creator with tons of features for you to choose from. The easy, "drag and drop" elements allow even the novice technology user to create ...more
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Weebly is an easy, free website creator with tons of features for you to choose from. The easy, "drag and drop" elements allow even the novice technology user to create their own website. Besides the basic "drag and drop" features for the title, text, text with a picture, etc., the free version allows you to use cool items: photo gallery, slide show, YouTube videos, Google Maps, an assignment form, and lots more. They promise that the free service will remain 100% feature packed.

tag(s): blogs (88), gamification (65), microblogging (44), social networking (112)

In the Classroom

If you plan to have students create their own web pages, under your account, no email is needed for them, and they will have a special log in page. You will have to enter each student's name, username and a password. What's nice about Weebly is they will print out a list for you to give to students with their log in information. Though you can make your site private, you want to be sure not to use student's real names. Use a code or acronym. Suggestion: You can use the first two letters of the students last name, the first three letters of their first name, and if you have multiple classes, have them put the class period or code after the last letter. This works well if you're going to be grading web pages, since most grade books are in alphabetical order by last name.

Possible uses are only limited by your imagination! Create your own Weebly website for parents and students where they can stay updated about what is happening in your classroom, where students can submit their assignments, contact information, and anything else you might want to put on your website. You can add up to 40 students on one free website, so students can use their pages for projects and assignments. There is a free blogging tool that you may want your students to use for writing assignments, reflection, or reading journals, just to name a few ideas. You can have everything you need on one Weebly website! Find more specific blog ideas in TeachersFirst's Blogging Basics ideas.

Try using Weebly for: "visual essays;" digital biodiversity logs (with digital pictures students take); online literary magazines; personal reflections in images and text; research project presentations; comparisons of online content, such as political candidates' sites or content sites used in research (compared for bias); science sites documenting experiments or illustrating concepts, such as the water cycle; "Visual" lab reports; Digital scrapbooks 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; 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: you provide the digital pictures, and they sequence, caption, and write about them (younger students) or you provide the steps in a project as a template, and they insert the actual content of their own.

After a first project where you provide "building blocks," the sky is the limit on what they can do. Even the very young can make suggestions as you "create" a whole-class product together using an interactive whiteboard or projector. Consider making a new project for each unit you teach so students can "recap" long after the unit ends.

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Expedition Lit Trips - Thomas Cooper

Grades
8 to 12
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Expedition Lit Trips is a version of Google Lit Trips (reviewed here) where students read books that depict various historical and modern expeditions...more
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Expedition Lit Trips is a version of Google Lit Trips (reviewed here) where students read books that depict various historical and modern expeditions and produce a "geographical book report" with Google Earth technology. Learn more about Google Earth in this TeachersFirst review. Objectives may include collecting and analyzing various historical documents in order to understand the relationships between the time and place that writers' described and their significance on today's world. Students use modern technology, (Google Earth), to learn about and map, the explorations of literary and historical figures, or authors, and even poets. There are many sample projects to look at from this Wiki page, with all the "soup to nuts" detailed directions, ideas, templates, links to tools, and supports to get you started and guide you throughout the various layers. If you are not familiar with Google Earth, there is a link provided right at the bottom of the page that enables you to download a free Google Earth Pro license for your school and watch tutorial videos to guide you through all the amazing features.

tag(s): earth (228), literature (275), maps (287), setting (11)

In the Classroom

Integrate technology with your study of the achievements and adventures of great nonfictional or fictional men and women to discover and navigate what it was like to live and work in a particular place and period of time, or research themes and challenges that were influenced by various locations and cultures during different historical periods. Start by projecting on your whiteboard some of the student pages to explore and inspire your class to make their own "trips" that fit your curriculum. Some of the many samples include a Google Map created to correspond to The Boy in the Striped Pajamas and projects such as the one created to accompany John Krakauer's Into Thin Air. The ideas work well for both individual or groups and are perfect for teaming up with colleagues in other departments to work on as an interdisciplinary project. All the resources and "how to" information that you will need are accessible directly from the site, so you will not have to hunt for anything.
 
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Teach Collaborative Revision with Google Docs - Google

Grades
8 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
    
Teach Collaborative Revision with Google Docs helps you teach some of the final important steps of the writing process in a meaningful and practical way. The secure, sharing features...more
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Teach Collaborative Revision with Google Docs helps you teach some of the final important steps of the writing process in a meaningful and practical way. The secure, sharing features of Google Docs enable your students to engage in group work and peer editing in a safe online environment. This will add a critical piece to your classroom writing curriculum and everything you need to know to get started, along with easy-to-follow directions, are available right from this web site. There are several reproducible PDF articles filled with student-friendly tips and techniques for revision, as well as a teacher's guide that provides innovative ideas for lesson plans and how to use these materials with Google Docs. To begin, treat yourself to Teachersfirst "tour" of Google Docs by clicking on this link link. You will be amazed at how easy it is to get started!

tag(s): editing (61), proofreading (19), writing (359)

In the Classroom

Create an innovative, exciting revision experience for students to edit each other's writing and engage in the peer review process by using the collaboration feature of Google Docs. This tool facilitates teacher comments on student essays by not having to wait until students turn in their papers. Check essays online, monitor progress, and even make suggestions for revisions to provide feedback along the way to drive successful proofreading and editing skills. After students are entered as collaborators, they will each have a different color to distinguish what they contributed to the document, and you can easily see who made what revisions. Suggested lesson plans for peer editing, complete with downloadable, reproducible handouts and online tutorials are provided. The ease of access to Google Docs makes these lessons a breeze to carry out from any internet connection, so you may start it in the classroom and continue as a homework assignment.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Middlespot - Middlespot

Grades
2 to 12
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Use this innovative website for social bookmarking in a unique, visual way. Add search material from anywhere on the web by dragging and dropping elements around the screen. Search...more
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Use this innovative website for social bookmarking in a unique, visual way. Add search material from anywhere on the web by dragging and dropping elements around the screen. Search directly from within Middlespot and view results through hovering and mouse clicks without leaving the site. Annotate information collected and share with others. Find the tools easily in a bar along the top. Click Add to enter elements, including stickies. Drag and drop the materials into a more pleasing arrangement. Create a workspace -- they call it a "mashup"-- without registering but use a login to save them. Mashups are private but can be changed to share with others.

tag(s): bookmarks (60)

In the Classroom

Only a little play is needed to learn how to use this tool. Create a class account for students to use in order to collaborate with others.

Create teacher-made mashups to collect materials for a web-based assignment. Use this site for student groups to collect materials in mashups for their group projects. Assign students a topic and allow them to interact online. The research and conversations created through highlighting and annotating what they read can greatly enhance both their research skills and their online interaction on academic level skills. Or, use the site to post discussion assignments on specific articles or even parts of articles. Add stickies to highlight areas or for others to comment. Have students comment on the link in a "class discussion" as an outside of class assignment. Post assignments, post readings, science teachers - post online interactive labs, and more. Create whole-class mashups on a unit topic in lower grades, such as "things we learned about frogs" or "things that use energy."

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Courosa's library - Alec Couros

Grades
K to 12
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Need to create an email account(s) to sign student(s) on to various web 2.0 tools? Use this screencast to learn how to create subaccounts for your gmail account. Follow the ...more
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Need to create an email account(s) to sign student(s) on to various web 2.0 tools? Use this screencast to learn how to create subaccounts for your gmail account. Follow the additional information in the screencast for creating filters when subaccount emails come into your inbox.

tag(s): video (254)

In the Classroom

Depending upon the age of your students and whether they are allowed to make their own accounts for Web 2.0 tools, consider making subaccounts to register students for accounts. Use the subaccounts for websites requiring email verification. Remember to create a master list of logins, passwords, and even subaccount email names.

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Todoist - Todoist

Grades
4 to 12
13 Favorites 1  Comments
   
Todoist is a simple, free, task manager. Your students need to know about time management skills. Todoist will help you teach them and give them practice. It has a built ...more
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Todoist is a simple, free, task manager. Your students need to know about time management skills. Todoist will help you teach them and give them practice. It has a built in calendar, and you can create sub-projects and sub-tasks easily. Set up free accounts in minutes.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): calendars (44), DAT device agnostic tool (199), organizational skills (122)

In the Classroom

Any student would appreciate having an online time management account, but learning support students and disorganized gifted students need one. You may want to model using this online tool to help middle and high school students learn better personal organization. Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector the first week of school to help students set-up their own accounts. Parents may appreciate learning about this site also. Use this site professionally to keep yourself organized! Make a demo account for a mythical student and organize his/hers together so students can see how it works.

Comments

What a fabulous organizational tool for teachers and students! Melissa, , Grades: 0 - 5

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Google Earth - Tech hints - Louise Maine

Grades
K to 12
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For educators looking for some great links and help with Google Earth (as well as other Google products.) Even though this site was developed for a training in-service, find some ...more
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For educators looking for some great links and help with Google Earth (as well as other Google products.) Even though this site was developed for a training in-service, find some great screenshots, tutorials, and links to great Google Earth examples. Be sure to check out the navigation list on the left for tutorials of other Google products and technology hints. For more information on Google Earth, find our review here. Also, find more support at Google Earth in the Classroom.

tag(s): earth (228), landforms (45), landmarks (26), maps (287)

In the Classroom

Use this resource to learn about and become acquainted with Google Earth. Google Earth is a free application download.

Find some great resources and project ideas on this technology hints site. Be sure to check the Google Earth review here for other great ideas. Take your students around the world using the fabulous tool. Create narrated tours for students (or have students create their own). The possibilities are immense with Google Earth.

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Motivator - Big Huge Labs

Grades
K to 12
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Create your own motivational posters easily and simply. Choose a random picture (one from Flickr or Facebook) or use one already on your computer. Choose colors and other options as...more
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Create your own motivational posters easily and simply. Choose a random picture (one from Flickr or Facebook) or use one already on your computer. Choose colors and other options as well as the type of text to be used. Enter your text and preview the result. Once complete, save to Flickr, your computer, or print. Remember you can use a saved image in PowerPoint shows and on a class wiki, as well as blogs and other sites.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): collages (17), images (266), photography (160), posters (36)

In the Classroom

Make sure students are aware of copyright laws. Use this site to encourage proper use of photographs that students have the authorization to use. Model including appropriate photo credits on the posters. Check out the Big Huge Labs educator account. Easily pre-register students to avoid creating logins, view and download their creations, and view the site advertisement free. You will find information about the Educator Account here.

Younger students can use this tool together as a whole-class activity or simply enjoy the posters their teacher creates. Have students create a picture about a unit topic with a caption using new terms learned. For example, create posters about predators and prey or classifications of animals. Students can create a poster of a study skill or learning activity that helps them learn. Create a caption that explains how the student learns the best. Every subject area can use this resource to create interesting presentation posters for display or as springboards to talk about what was learned. For example, in Biology, students could create a poster about a cell part with a clever caption about the importance of the job. In Literature or History, students can create posters about the perspectives of others in the story or at that time of history. Rather than a traditional research project, have cooperative learning groups use this site to show their knowledge in any subject area. Ask students to apply concepts such as constitutional rights by illustrating them in poster images with captions. Teachers can create bulletin board images, as well. Have a classroom motivation poster competition to start off the school year! Share the winners on your class wiki or in a PowerPoint presentation at back to school night/open house. As special occasions approach, have students bring in or take a digital picture they can make into a poster as a family gift with their own inspirational saying. Create a portfolio of 6 word stories, utilizing a powerful picture and 6 words to demonstrate the concept that was learned. Assign students the task of placing their project on a blog with a larger explanation of their understanding of the concept used in the picture.

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Wedoist - Wedoist

Grades
4 to 12
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Wedoist is an easy, free project manager. Do you have groups working on projects? Do they need to plan out their work and who will do what? Your students need ...more
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Wedoist is an easy, free project manager. Do you have groups working on projects? Do they need to plan out their work and who will do what? Your students need to know about time management skills. Wedoist will help you teach them. At Wedoist you'll find a simple, free task manager. It has a built in calendar and you can create sub-projects and sub-tasks easily. The free account is for groups of three or less. Be aware: this site is still operating, however support staff is no longer available.

tag(s): classroom management (135), organizational skills (122), time (144)

In the Classroom

When older students sign up for an account, be sure to tell them to use their code or acronym instead of their real name. For younger students you can create an account and as many groups as you need. Invite students to the group they will be working with. Older students can sign up for the program and create their own project and invite their group members. Have the students agree on tasks and who will complete them and post it on Wedoist. Use this site to help students organize for individual or collaborative research projects. Take the "time" to actually teach about time management skills, one of the most sought-after skills listed by today's employers.

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Psykopaint - Mathieu

Grades
3 to 12
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Turn a photograph into a painting without all the mess. Psykopaint is an on-line painting program that is easy to use. You do not need to be artistic to transform ...more
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Turn a photograph into a painting without all the mess. Psykopaint is an on-line painting program that is easy to use. You do not need to be artistic to transform a personal or stock photo into artwork reminiscent of impressionism, cubism, or tile mosaics. Adjust any image's color intensity, value, and hue. There are also transparency layers and effects that are fun to play with. When a masterpiece is complete, simply save it to the desktop and it is available for a wide range of uses. Users may submit work to the Psykopaint gallery through a Facebook account, but no Facebook account is needed for creating and saving an image. There is also a blank canvas: a free form drawing option that does not require photography. This site may or may not be fully accessible inside your school filtering. You will want to check all portions that you plan to use in class.

tag(s): images (266), multimedia (57), painting (66), photography (160)

In the Classroom

Users need to know how to select and upload a photograph from a computer. Be sure to take advantage of the helpful on-line tutorials. Enjoy spending some time experimenting with the site before introducing it to your class. The on-line gallery takes submissions and lets users view artwork. This is only accessible with a Facebook account. Many schools block Facebook entirely, so check first. Facebook accounts DO require a valid email address. One option is to register for a class Facebook account using a free class gmail account. It is essential that permissible use and consequences are set before introducing the site. Get parent permission before posting any student work on the sharing site. Downloading drawings allows "local control." Without a Facebook account it is possible to view the work of others but not, comment, rate and submit artwork. Preview artwork in the user's gallery before having your class accesses it. Students will also need to know how to cite the original source of a photograph. Psykopaint is a wonderful alternative to hand drawn pictures. Students can liven up reports, stories, websites, and podcasts with manipulated photographs. Model how to use this site on your projector or interactive whiteboard and then give students at least one full class session to experiment. Create your own set of pictures in advance and limit students to the class set so they do not search and find pictures inappropriate for the classroom. Have students take photographs of historic landmarks or important buildings in their town and then use Psykopaint to transform them into illustrations. Help students use these images to create an online, multimedia, town history poster using a "glog," using GlogsterEDU, reviewed here. Consider scanning or photographing student artwork and then use this site to edit their creation. Let students photograph themselves acting out scenes for a story they wrote then transform them into painterly illustrations. Have students create a multimedia presentation using Thinglink, reviewed here. This site allows users to narrate a picture. The artwork students can create on this site will spice up any published projects.

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Wolfram Alpha - Wolfram Alpha LLC

Grades
6 to 12
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Looking for a great search tool for quantitative information? Use Wolfram Alpha to find responses in a whole new way. Use the power of Wolfram Alpha to get to the ...more
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Looking for a great search tool for quantitative information? Use Wolfram Alpha to find responses in a whole new way. Use the power of Wolfram Alpha to get to the heart of computational and mathematical data with corresponding information and explanations. You must be exact in the wording of your query since Wolfram Alpha may not know what to do with your request. Wolfram alpha is peer reviewed vs. user generated and should be considered a valuable resource. To better understand this entirely different approach, watch the "Take the Tour" video available by clicking on "About." Browse the examples to notice the subtleties. To see the vast differences between Wolfram Alpha and Google using Goofram, reviewed here.

tag(s): resources (112), search engines (65)

In the Classroom

Experiment together with your students to understand how Wolfphram Alpha works. For example, type in two cities (such as New York and Melbourne Australia.) Results from the search can include: distance between in various units, flight path on a map of the world, time to travel (as a person, light beam, or sound wave), portion of circumference of the Earth, population, elevation, and time zones. Use this site to not only get numerical answers but the computations behind them. Compare this to Google which provides great search results, but sends you mostly to another site for the math. Use Wolfram Alpha to uncover and connect a vast amount of factual scientific, mathematical, socio-economic, biographical, cultural, and linguistic data. View National Mortality Rates and follow these numbers down to view chances at specific heights and weights. Use to examine DNA sequences, various biochemical reactions and equations, and investigate particle physics. Wolfram Alpha can handle tough advanced math problems, not only providing the answer but walking step by step through the solution. Practice different queries for students to learn how to be more exact in searching. Be sure to compare Wolfram Alpha and Google side by side to determine the advantages for each.
 
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Exploratree - Futurelab

Grades
4 to 12
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Exploratree is a free online library of thinking guides where you can choose a graphic organizer/mind map and fill it in. Or, you can create your own thinking guide. There ...more
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Exploratree is a free online library of thinking guides where you can choose a graphic organizer/mind map and fill it in. Or, you can create your own thinking guide. There are many highly interactive features: printing, emailing, and collaborating with others in real time. The home page has several videos that show you how to use the features of the site, and it has many ideas for how to use Exploratree in your classroom.

tag(s): brain (72), brainstorming (23), graphic organizers (43)

In the Classroom

Play with the tools and toolbars to create a mind map; use toolbars to collaborate, publish, or print diagrams. Creating the organizers is of easy to medium difficulty depending upon how elaborate your organizer is. You and your students must be registered and logged in to share, or comment on each other's thinking guide. Note: to use the collaboration feature, collaborators need individual email accounts to gain access. You can also export the mind maps in pdf format, text, or as an image (gif).

Make sure your students use a code name or number when registering. Be sure to save their names/numbers, for when they "forget."

Have students create graphic organizers in cooperative groups as a study guide for unit content, to collect information for a group research project, or show examples of an important concept. In science classes, have groups generate visual illustrations of processes such as photosynthesis. In literature, generate story maps or diagram the relationships between characters. In social studies, illustrate different factors that lead to a war or economic meltdown. Share and compare the organizers on an interactive whiteboard or projector in class and allow classmates to suggest changes. Use student-made organizers as an informal formative assessment part way through any unit.

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Homestyler - Autodesk

Grades
5 to 12
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Homestyler is a free online interior design planner. Users choose a layout plan, add details such as doors, windows, and furnishings, and then decide on color schemes for interior decorating....more
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Homestyler is a free online interior design planner. Users choose a layout plan, add details such as doors, windows, and furnishings, and then decide on color schemes for interior decorating. Designs are viewable in both a 2D and 3D format. This is a free online program that requires no downloading. Registration does require an email address. This site may or may not be fully accessible inside your school filtering. Check to make sure all portions of this site are available when using your school's network. Homestyler does have a retail component that suggests certain name brands for appliances, and building supplies but the 3D designing capability outshines this form of advertising.

tag(s): architecture (84), area (66), design (84), volume (45)

In the Classroom

Users click and drag design components onto the main layout page. The free draw tool is a bit trickier to control but is similar to drawing tools in other programs. The perimeter measurement scrolls alongside the line you are drawing. The interface for such a complicated concept is intuitive. Students will need explicit instructions on how to operate this program.

Use an interactive whiteboard or projector to share the tutorial presentation and demonstrate how to use the design tools. Divide students into cooperative learning groups to explore the site. Consider this resource to help math students visualize how to compute the surface area of three-dimensional shapes and understand how area and volume change with scale. Social Studies and History teachers can ask students to re-create the interior of an early American home, Greek Temple or even their own classroom. With guidance, this could be a wonderful tool to help younger students understand interior mapping skills. Classrooms focusing on "real-world learning" may find this a valuable resource tool to help students create design plans for an alternative environment.

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Flisti - Flists

Grades
2 to 12
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Create free online polls easily without creating an account. Enter your question and possible answers. Click create a poll. Want to place the poll on a website or blog? Copy ...more
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Create free online polls easily without creating an account. Enter your question and possible answers. Click create a poll. Want to place the poll on a website or blog? Copy the URL and use it as a link. Or click the link below your poll to copy the embed code to paste wherever you want. Click view results to see votes in a bar graph form. Copy the graph by using the print screen function of your computer. Use Print screen for PC or Apple/Shift/4. Print the graph or upload to a wiki, blog, or site of your choice.

tag(s): quiz (85), quizzes (97)

In the Classroom

Users must be able to copy/paste the link to the poll or know how to use embed codes if placing in a wiki, blog, or site. Since this service is free and does not require signup, use this site whenever a quick and easy poll is needed.

Be sure that students use the poll appropriately and that personal information is not given out in poll responses.

Use this site anywhere quick answers are needed. Have students create a poll about what they are interested in and allow time to analyze responses and report findings. Use this site to vote for correct answers in math class, project ideas for science or social studies, social issues in current events, and practically any other subject area. In an elementary math class, collect quick data to show how graphs can be used. Provide options for students to gain confidence in generating and analyzing statistics they have created. Make a quick parent poll to include on a class web site to keep the lines of communication open.
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Quicklyst - Shantanu Bala

Grades
6 to 12
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This application for note-taking is extremely simple to use, but performs in a very sophisticated way. There is a very easy text tutorial and FAQ to tell you about such ...more
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This application for note-taking is extremely simple to use, but performs in a very sophisticated way. There is a very easy text tutorial and FAQ to tell you about such features as creating an outline, accessing the DuckDuckGo search engine or looking up a word on the Merriam-Webster online dictionary without ever leaving your notes. It also connects to definitions from Wikipedia. And, you can automatically send your notes to your Amazon Kindle device. For math and science, the text tutorial will also show you how you can enter equations in your notes using the LaTeX format.

tag(s): note taking (32)

In the Classroom

If you do not approve use of Wikipedia, you will want to state this up front to your students. Before turning your students loose with this program, use your interactive whiteboard, projector and Quicklyst to show them how to put information in their own words. Then you can have them use Quicklyst to take notes for any type of summarizing or research. Create separate accounts on Quicklyst for student research groups. Students can then easily share their notes with their group members. Create a class account, and use your interactive whiteboard and projector along with Quicklyst to have the class create a study guide for a test on any subject. These can be saved and used for notes for a final test. If there is a common class password, students will be able to access the notes from home.

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