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Cobocards - Cobocards

Grades
K to 12
2 Favorites 0  Comments
   
This site allows you to create flashcards, and includes sharing and group capabilities. Many teachers will be able to navigate this free site very easily. Enter vocabulary terms and...more
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This site allows you to create flashcards, and includes sharing and group capabilities. Many teachers will be able to navigate this free site very easily. Enter vocabulary terms and definitions as well as any html (web page language), such as images and charts to create electronic flashcards and quizzes for word study to use in language or other content areas. Create individual sets of flashcards, or invite others to interact and learn the same words. Teacher or students can create groups to share word lists. As with other collaborative tools, the revision history is easily accessible.

tag(s): flash cards (46), grammar review (37), word study (80)

In the Classroom

Sharing with friends for collaboration does require the sending of an email invitation.

Explore the guided tour to learn an overview or find answers to specific use questions. Save your "sets" and decide whether you want them to be completely public, just for you personally, or shared with a "group." Create your own groups for each class or subject. Publish your cards for others to use. Published sets can be altered to create a new and personalized set.

Teachers in lower grades will want to create cards their students can use and perhaps have more techno-savvy help with the process. Content and English teachers may choose to set up their own network of users. Learning support teachers could suggest that their students create their own flashcard sets to assist learning of the concepts. Use the interactive whiteboard or projector for quick flashcard or electronic testing using your sets as a whole class or in small groups in the classroom. Collaborate with other teachers to create useful sets for all to use. Rotate responsibility each marking period among student groups in your class to create a set for each chapter/unit/week for the rest of the class to use as review. Give a special award (or bonus points) for the most creative, complete set that marking period.

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Google Earth Lessons - David (a Central Florida Computer Teacher)

Grades
4 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
    
This site offers a collection of lesson plans to correlate with Google Earth. There are lessons in math, social studies, language arts, and science. View "How To" videos, "Student Controlled"...more
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This site offers a collection of lesson plans to correlate with Google Earth. There are lessons in math, social studies, language arts, and science. View "How To" videos, "Student Controlled" lesson plans, "Teacher Controlled" lesson plans, "mini lessons," or search the lessons by content area. Click on Home to read the latest news at the site. The lessons are ready to go. Some include standards. This site does require Flash and Adobe Acrobat. Google Earth How-To links use Quicktime video. You can all these plug-ins from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): capitals (24), latitude (13), longitude (13), maps (288), migration (59), time (144), time zones (8)

In the Classroom

Search the site for your content area. Take advantage of the free lesson plans. If you aren't familiar with Google Earth check out the site (reviewed here). There is a lot to explore with this multi-faceted tool, Google Earth. If you do not have it installed for FREE on your school computer, use this lesson blog to demonstrate to your administration why you should.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Bubblr - Pimpampum.net

Grades
2 to 12
2 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Create free comic strips from flickr pictures. Search tags in flickr or search by user to choose pictures then add words in the caption bubbles. If you use flickr ...more
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Create free comic strips from flickr pictures. Search tags in flickr or search by user to choose pictures then add words in the caption bubbles. If you use flickr reviewed here, you can set up your own tagged collection of images for students to use, as well. Quickly publish, email, or embed your comic strip.

tag(s): comics and cartoons (74), images (265), photography (160)

In the Classroom

Knowledge of use of tags and familiarity with flickr is required. Each picture is labeled with the title and the picture creator's name.

Type in the name of a topic in the tag area or the name of a known flickr user. Entering information into both fields is not required. Pictures will appear in the top area. Choose a picture you wish to use by clicking on it. To add another picture, choose the options in "Add frames." Drag a caption bubble onto the picture and type in your caption. Easily delete pictures by clicking the "Delete" button at the bottom of the picture. When finished, click "Publish." Comics can be deleted afterward, and sharing gives the option for sending an email link or using an embed code to include within a website or blog.

Clicking on "...or visit the archive" takes you to other users' content. The archive of this site includes changing "featured" content.

Consider creating anonymous ways to enter names in order to track student contributions. All projects are public. Check your school policy for posting student work online. Written permission is always a good idea.

Use this site for students to take pictures of lab experiment steps and explain the experiment or the concepts behind the experiment. Students can create a story using pictures taken from home and uploaded to a class flickr account. Any school subject can easily use the comic strip generator to show knowledge learned in class. World language or ESL/ELL students can create dialog strips. Reinforce vocabulary by having students create strips with characters using the new words. Assess student understanding of concepts by providing a collection of tagged photos on Flickr and having the class create a Bubblr strip on the interactive whiteboard (collaborating for a whole-class or group grade). Share completed strips on your class web page or wiki. Example created for review: Angiosperms by Mrs. Maine

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Computer Lab Favorites - Scholastic

Grades
K to 5
9 Favorites 0  Comments
  
All of the activities at this site are designed to take 15-30 minutes and include language arts, math, science, social studies, and Spanish. You can also choose your grade levels: ...more
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All of the activities at this site are designed to take 15-30 minutes and include language arts, math, science, social studies, and Spanish. You can also choose your grade levels: k-2 or 3-5. There are over 50 interactive stories and activities here to share. Examples of activities include Rhyme with Reggie, Myth Brainstorming Machine, Practice Counting Stars, Figure out a Pizza Puzzle, Tour the Mayflower, Build a Plane, Build a Dinosaur, Play Sports on the Moon, Make Weather Happen, and countless others.

If you click on the Student View a spinning wheel will appear. Students can spin to choose a random activity! Many of these activities require Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): dinosaurs (57), pilgrims (17), poetry (227), preK (279), spelling (168)

In the Classroom

Save this site in your favorites on your classroom computers. Introduce this site on your projector or interactive whiteboard. If a student finishes early and needs some enrichment or is struggling and needs some extra practice, look here for some interactive help! Share this site on your class website for students to access outside of the classroom.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Johnnie's Story Page - Johnnie Wilson

Grades
K to 12
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This website offers a compilation of links to interactive stories designed in the categories of Beginning Readers, Classic Stories, and Older Readers. The site was created by Johnnie...more
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This website offers a compilation of links to interactive stories designed in the categories of Beginning Readers, Classic Stories, and Older Readers. The site was created by Johnnie Wilson, a mentor math coach and former 5th grade teacher. He has found the "best of the best" interactive stories and activities on the web! The reading levels vary, so preview the stories before sharing them with your students.

tag(s): spelling (168)

In the Classroom

What a fabulous way to share classic stories, fables, fairy tales, and myths! Use your interactive whiteboard or projector to introduce your students to these wonderful stories. Use this website in your language arts classes, special education classes, with your ESL and ELL students to share these classic stories, or the other topics provided. Challenge your gifted students to create new "classics." Have students investigate the sites on their own (using headsets). Save this site as a favorite on your classroom computers. With elementary students use this site during your language arts block, use this website as a learning center for students to explore independently. (Be sure to provide headsets). Don't forget to list this link in your class newsletter or on your class website, so students can practice their reading skills at home or maintain skills during vacations.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Myths and Legends - E2BN

Grades
3 to 8
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If myths are part of your classroom's curriculum, then check out Myths and Legends (an English site). Most stories are spoken in English (British and Gaelic). Not only can you...more
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If myths are part of your classroom's curriculum, then check out Myths and Legends (an English site). Most stories are spoken in English (British and Gaelic). Not only can you listen and read myths and legends from countries around the world, but you can also record your own. In order for your class to upload myths and legends, you must do a quick registry at the site. Registration does require an email address. If you plan to have students register individually, you may want to create your own Gmail account with up to 20 subaccounts for each group of students (by code name or number) within your classes. Here is a blog post that tells how to set up GMail subaccounts to use for any online membership service.

Click on the Teachers link to explore lessons and other resources. Your class may wish to leave comments after they listen to the stories. Check out the Gallery, which shows photos of the actual setting for the myth. Unsure of the archaic terms? Then use the glossary that's provided for each myth and legend. Flash is required and can be gotten here: TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

In the Classroom

Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. With younger students, use this site in your listening/computer corner for students to listen and read along the multitude of stories at this site. Your class may opt to write their own story of local myths or legends, and then submit it to this site. Have students write online legend or myth books using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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The Story Starter - Joel Heffner

Grades
4 to 12
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This site is quite simple, but also rather magical for writing. It has a link for young writers ("The Story Starters, Jr") as well as the original story starter generator ...more
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This site is quite simple, but also rather magical for writing. It has a link for young writers ("The Story Starters, Jr") as well as the original story starter generator which claims to have "373,067,200 creative ideas and writer prompts." The Story Starter, Jr. link has over 700 story starters especially for younger students. Clicking on the random story starter sentence generator gives an idea and students develop their own ideas from there. There is also a link that shows completed stories begun with the story starters given.

tag(s): creative writing (166), writing (358)

In the Classroom

Demonstrate HOW to use this simple site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. This is great not only for writer's block, but also ideas for stories, poems, dramas, and group stories. In the primary grades, use this site to create writing centers. With secondary grades, have the class create a collaborative wiki using a story starter. Have students create blog entries using the story starter.

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Zamzar - Zamzar

Grades
K to 12
6 Favorites 1  Comments
   
Need an offline copy of a video? Need to make changes to pdf documents? This online tool allows you to download videos or convert files between different formats, including conversion...more
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Need an offline copy of a video? Need to make changes to pdf documents? This online tool allows you to download videos or convert files between different formats, including conversion of .pdf files to Word documents and Word to .pdfs. You can also convert music, video, and photo files to different formats of your choice. This is a VERY useful tool. Select the file to import or the URL of the video to download, the change to be made, and receive a link to the converted file in the new format via email. Then click to download the file from the link. You have only 24 hours to retrieve the file (RIGHT- click to download or Save Target as)!

The documents are editable after conversion. Images will not be as "editable" as text. The text comes in within a text box, but can be edited. Be aware that many school email spam filters may block the Zamzar emails because they view them as "spam." If emails do not come through or you cannot download from Zamzar's link, request the converted files be sent to a home email address and bring them to school "on a stick."

Be aware: there are MANY advertisements at this site, so this many not be a site that you want students to explore independently. Also, the site mentions having to register. You do not need to register to use most of the features.
This site includes advertising.

In the Classroom

Mark this tool in your favorites for easy access. Teachers should model ethical use of electronic resources (other people's work) for students. Making a "derivative work" from someone else's pdf handout should include a printed credit within the new document, giving credit for the original source, Ex. "Adapted from a handout by xxx available at www.theoriginalhandout.pdf." Such derivative use should only be done when the original copyright permits it, such as using materials that grant permission for classroom use. Be sure to give proper credit for videos and other files you save locally.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

Comments

One main problem with the site is that you need to enter the email address and wait for the email to download the file. There is a nice pdf conversion site http://www.pdfaid.com where you can convert and download the file instantly. Disclaimer: I am the owner of the website. pdf, , Grades: 0 - 12

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Mother's Day Crafts and Children's Activities - DLTK

Grades
K to 3
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DLTK has created this website that features crafts, songs, cards, poems, puzzles, interactive games, recipes, language arts activities, themed writing paper and more. Some of the activities...more
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DLTK has created this website that features crafts, songs, cards, poems, puzzles, interactive games, recipes, language arts activities, themed writing paper and more. Some of the activities require ShockWave, Flash, or Adobe Acrobat. You can get them from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): mothers day (13)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of these ready to go resources. Share the puzzles and educational activities on an interactive whiteboard or projector. In art class, try some of the crafts. Challenge students to write their own poems to their mothers. Have students narrate a photo of their mother (or another influential female in their lives) using UtellStory, reviewed here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Grade 2 - Go For Grammar Gold - Harcourt School Publishers

Grades
1 to 3
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This site, created especially for second grade students, includes several interactive grammar lessons. Topics include "Using Nouns and Pronouns Correctly," "Forms of Be," "Forms of...more
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This site, created especially for second grade students, includes several interactive grammar lessons. Topics include "Using Nouns and Pronouns Correctly," "Forms of Be," "Forms of Have," "Parts of a Sentence," among others. The lessons include audio, so most non-readers can use the interactives independently. Shockwave is required. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): sentences (52), verbs (41)

In the Classroom

Use this site as a class activity on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students work with partners to explore certain topic areas together. Or use this site to create a Language Arts center. List this site in your class newsletter or on your class website for students to use both in and out of the classroom. Save this site in your favorites on your class computers.

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The Teachers' Corner - The Teachers' Corner

Grades
K to 12
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This is a great site to mine for quick lesson plans, ideas on thematic units, or simply daily writing prompts. There are detailed lesson plans available for math, arts and ...more
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This is a great site to mine for quick lesson plans, ideas on thematic units, or simply daily writing prompts. There are detailed lesson plans available for math, arts and crafts, nutrition, health, music, math, reading, physical education, technology, writing, science, and social studies. Visit the Seasonal Items link to find even MORE resources related to Read Across America, 100th Day ideas, Daily seasonal writing prompts, and much more! Many of the links will take you to other sites, but the onsite printable worksheets and calendars make it worth a visit. Note: the site is laden with advertising, something TeachersFirst users may not appreciate! This site requires Adobe Acrobat. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): fractions (239), nutrition (154), parts of speech (68), phonics (75), speech (92), themes (12), writing (358)

In the Classroom

Although this site has a TON to explore, one of the best places on this site is the daily writing prompt section (find seasonal prompts at the Seasonal Items link). You can share them on your interactive whiteboard or projector with a picture and fact about the day and a question requiring a written answer. This is a great discussion starter or activating strategy with any grade level and it can already be posted when the kids enter the room or used as a prompt for blogging. Whatever subject area you teach, if you are looking for some new strategies to reach your students, check out this site.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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The Write Prompts - Squidoo, LLC

Grades
4 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
This site is full of writing ideas and different prompts. You can get a different prompt for every day, including printing them out by the month and daily word prompts. ...more
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This site is full of writing ideas and different prompts. You can get a different prompt for every day, including printing them out by the month and daily word prompts. There are prompts for younger students up through 12th grade. Powered by Squidoo, it has a lot of ads, which makes it more suitable for teacher use than student, but the variety of prompts and links to other writing prompt sites makes it worthwhile.

tag(s): writing (358)

In the Classroom

Use this as a source for any kind of daily or specialty writing you would like to do with students. Take a look and choose a few options for your students to use. Have students model them on your interactive whiteboard in conjunction with a specific writing or grammar skill. For example, choose a prompt to challenge the class to use quotation marks correctly or to add vivid verbs. Have students use the writing prompt of their choice to create a blog entry.

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Jeopardy Labs - Matt Johnson

Grades
K to 12
6 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Looking to make a great jeopardy game with no fees, registration, or powerpoint slides involved? Now you can with Jeopardy Labs! Create your own Jeopardy game or browse the already...more
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Looking to make a great jeopardy game with no fees, registration, or powerpoint slides involved? Now you can with Jeopardy Labs! Create your own Jeopardy game or browse the already created jeopardy games! Be aware: there are over 6,000 Jeopardy Templates ready to use in the classroom, beginning at kindergarten! You may notice that some of the already created Jeopardy Templates are not in "question" format. The topics include nearly everything one can imagine: European Settlement, South America, various books, specific math topics, media, aircraft, and many, MANY more.

Note that all jeopardy templates created become part of the domain and can be used by others.

tag(s): grammar (216), keyboarding (38), literature (275), meiosis (15)

In the Classroom

Use any already-created game as a quick assessment of prior knowledge or review on projector or interactive whiteboard.

To prevent others from editing your template you create a password when you start. Others will be unable to edit your created game without your password. After creating your password, you are taken to the familiar blue jeopardy screen. Here, enter the title at the top and the topics at the top of the columns. Click on a dollar amount under each topic to enter the clue and the What is... question in a pop-up box. Click done to enter the information. The dollar value square becomes blank to let you know it was completed. When done, click "Save." Click on Browse to view random template titles or enter a term into the search bar. On the "Build" page, follow the quick instructions and even browse tips for editing. When done, an internet link will be given for your Jeopardy game. Put this link in any website, blog, or wiki for students to click on and review information for study.

Use this as an introductory activity to uncover misconceptions. For example, prior to a unit on viruses, create a jeopardy game about myths and truths about viruses. Share the Jeopardy activities on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Use these as a starting point for understanding concepts in the unit. Create review games for students to learn and remember content. After making one game together as a class, allow students to make their own games to challenge each other on segments of the material. This not only provides students with material to review, but the creation of a game takes thought and understanding of the material. Be sure that students understand how to create such a game and how to choose parts carefully. Check student games prior to saving. Maintain a page of Jeopardy links for review of a wide range of curricular topics.

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Befuddlr - Erik Kastner and Amy Hoy

Grades
K to 12
2 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Add some fun to your pictures by making them into puzzles using this free site. This easy-to-use, free site offers choices of Flickr picture groups to choose from, such as ...more
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Add some fun to your pictures by making them into puzzles using this free site. This easy-to-use, free site offers choices of Flickr picture groups to choose from, such as "Patterns," "Hello kitty," "Water drops," and many others. Choose a picture you wish to "befuddlr." Pieces of the original picture are moved around in a new order. Continue to choose a different combination, change the lines that divide segments of the picture, and even drag a button to your toolbar to "befuddlr" any picture. Once done, use the snapshot function of your computer to take a picture. In Mac, use apple-shift-four to take a snapshot. In PC, use the print screen (Prt Sc key) function to "copy" the picture and then paste it into a document or elsewhere. You are able to submit your own photos to the site (found on Flickr, of course). Learn more about flickr, a photo storage and sharing site, in the TeachersFirst review here.

tag(s): images (265), puzzles (208)

In the Classroom

To use the pictures provided, simply chose a "group" title, such as water drops, and click to befuddlr it. If you wish to befuddlr your own pictures, you must first upload them to Flickr, so you will need to learn that simple tool. Be sure to TAG your pictures so you can FIND them again! No membership or saving are available on befuddlr. Its is an on-the-spot tool. Be sure to use your own images or copyright free images and images that are available to be built upon. If students click to choose other pictures from Flickr, they could encounter ANYTHING that someone has uploaded, so be sure to guide them to the pictures you want them to use and have a stated policy and consequence for those who wander off into inappropriate places. Flickr does have anti-porn policies, but girls in bikinis, for example, are still available! Use snapshots of animals, numbers, letters, or other pictures and have students scramble the pieces. Befuddlr a picture on your interactive whiteboard to start a language lesson! Students can create their own and provide hints using a variety of constraints such as no more than 5 words, a poem, using adjectives only, etc. in order to help those guessing the original picture. In Art, create new patterns for analysis. Use befuddled pictures to practice new vocabulary for young ones or for ESL and world language students. Accompany student poetry with befuddled pictures
 
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Vocaroo - Vocaroo

Grades
K to 12
10 Favorites 0  Comments
  
Record a message and embed it into your favorite site or provide a link to share for free. Send to a friend by entering your email and the email of ...more
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Record a message and embed it into your favorite site or provide a link to share for free. Send to a friend by entering your email and the email of the recipient. Recording the message is easy and embedding into a site such as a wiki or blog has never been simpler! No login or registration is needed. Although, if you choose to send a message via email, you must choose a password to use at the site. Vocaroos are stored on their server. Created messages can also be downloaded to individual computers. Visit their FAQ's for frequent questions and responses.

tag(s): speech (92)

In the Classroom

You need to be able to navigate controls on the website and sound levels on your computer. Copy/pasting embed codes is also a necessary skill for insertion in a website. Email the sound clip very easily.

Future saving of Vocaroos is unsure depending upon server space. Before using with students, you may wish to obtain permission from administration and/or parents. Be sure to check your school's acceptable use policy. Students should be made aware of acceptable use and consequences of misuse of the service.

Record snippets of information as reminders on your class website or instructions for students to follow. This is terrific for learning support students or non-readers! Have students describe aspects of classroom learning experiences to share with others, such as what they learned from a science experiment or found out about life in Colonial America. Record a quick message for an absentee and email the link to him/her explaining how to catch up on missing work. Create tutorial pieces that students can use as study aids (or have them create them for each other). Use this site in world language classes or for ELL students: have students record and listen to their own pronunciation or send short messages to each other to translate. Have students use this site to practice speeches before the presentation to hear their speed, tone, and words. Use this site for research presentations, instructions for a substitute, or many other possibilities. With younger students, read a short story on Vocaroo, and have student follow along using a picture book. Or have the students read their own stories into Vocaroo and email the readings to their parents! For Mothers Day, why not have students record messages for mom or grandma? Another idea: create a class wiki where parents can "find" the entire selection of Vocaroos for Mother's Day (or another holiday). Record Vocaroos of each student talking about the importance of Moms for Mother's Day or how grateful they are for certain things at Thanksgiving. Embed them all in a class wiki to share with parents. Just email the URL for the collection.

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The Magic Key - Adventures - BBC

Grades
K to 2
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This site (created by the BBC) offers nine interactive language arts activities. HMS Sweet Toothdiscusses "full stops" also known as the ends of sentences. Lug and the Giant...more
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This site (created by the BBC) offers nine interactive language arts activities. HMS Sweet Toothdiscusses "full stops" also known as the ends of sentences. Lug and the Giant Storks talks about capital letters, and there are several other topics. Once you click on the activity you wish to teach, you are presented with a choice of "Game, Worksheet, or Teachers Resources." The Teachers Resources include detailed lesson plans with standards (matched to UK standards), extension activities, and other classroom ideas. This site requires Flash and Adobe Acrobat. You can get both from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): patterns (85), sentences (52), sound (100), sounds (68)

In the Classroom

If you are teaching any of the nine concepts that are highlighted at this site, be sure to take a look. Share HOW to do the activities on an interactive whiteboard or projector, and then allow students to explore on their own. Use the ready-to-go lesson plans, worksheet pages for homework practice, and interactives as learning stations or centers. Use this site with emergent readers, special education students, or your ESL and ELL students. List this link on your class website for students to use to practice at home.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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PicLits - PicLits.com

Grades
K to 12
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The title says it all: "Inspired Picture Writing!" Use this free drag and drop literacy tool to create great sentences inspired by beautiful pictures. Or add inspirational or humorous...more
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The title says it all: "Inspired Picture Writing!" Use this free drag and drop literacy tool to create great sentences inspired by beautiful pictures. Or add inspirational or humorous captions to pictures.

NOTE: Our editors regret that PicLits occasionally allows advertising on their home page to include images that are not classroom-friendly. Teachers should preview to determine whether or not your students can ignore the ads.

"Learn It" provides learning opportunities and examples for creating captions, compound sentences, or paragraphs. Advanced lesson plans for teachers are viewed in the "Learn It" tab as well. "View the Gallery" to see already-created PicLits as well as comments and ratings. After selecting a picture (or using the one they provide) and dragging a word onto the screen, choose different forms of the word by using the drop-down menu next to the word. Move your words anywhere on the screen for creative writing. You can also click "freestyle" instead to type in your own words instead of choosing from their list. Word lists change, depending on the image selected. Note: Advertisements run alongside the PicLits screen. Caution students to ignore these. Here is an example:
See the full PicLit at PicLits.com
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): creative writing (166), digital storytelling (142), images (265), sentences (52)

In the Classroom

Users of PicLits must be able to navigate tabs on sites, manage logins, and use URL's and embed codes to share results on websites and blogs. Play to learn the tools before or after joining. Help also provides a short-and-sweet text explanation of the tools.

Registering for a PicLits account requires the use of an email address. PicLits can be used without an account but users are unable to save or blog about their creation without an account. A class account can be created instead of individual student accounts. However, it does not show which work is attributable to which student. You may want to require that students initial their contributions in order to get credit. All work on the site can be seen without a login. All projects are public.

You may want to create a word doc, Favorites folder, or other "collection" of the URLS to all your students' projects in one place for easy work at grading time. Some teachers use a class wiki or blog with links to all projects from there. You may allow students to self-register, but be sure to keep a written record of their passwords for when they "forget." It may be worth your time to do advanced registration for your younger students or simply use a whole-class account.

Share a PicLit on your interactive whiteboard at the start of a grammar or writing lesson to discuss word choice, figures of speech, or vocabulary. Use the visual picture prompt for journal or blog writing, allowing each student to compose a unique poem or haiku. Even science classes can write about concepts illustrated in the many nature photos. Emotional support teachers will love the chance to discuss feelings and how to describe facial expressions in the pictures. Make a collection of PicLits for a curriculum topic or as a literary magazine online. ESL students can create PicLits to learn new vocabulary. Have students create PicLits for special occasions and special people (mom, dad, grandparents, school nurse, or others). Use the embed code to place your creations on many other sites, including your class wiki or blogs. Share your PicLit by using a URL or code for an embedded widget.

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Character Scrapbook - Scholastic

Grades
2 to 6
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Create a Character Scrapbook to analyze characters in a book that the class is reading or for books that students are reading individually. This colorful site asks for the "Book ...more
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Create a Character Scrapbook to analyze characters in a book that the class is reading or for books that students are reading individually. This colorful site asks for the "Book Title" and the "Character's Name." Then the fun begins! You can design a face (hair, eyes, nose, and mouth). You can enter up to ten things that you know about the character. You can choose to analyze a person or animal. There are many options available at this site. Other highlights include "draw your own" options, print option, a help button, and a link for teachers. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

In the Classroom

What a fabulous twist to a character analysis. Use this site to have your students analyze the main character in a story that your class is currently reading or one they read independently or in lit circles. Make the activity a group project, by using an interactive whiteboard or projector. Use the print option and have students create character scrapbooks in place of a traditional book report. Compare the characters from diverse books being read in different lit circles.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Real Trees 4 Kids - The National Christmas Tree Association

Grades
K to 12
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Trees, trees, and more trees - that is what you find at this site. There are lesson ideas and activities for all grade levels (K-12). The activities are broken down ...more
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Trees, trees, and more trees - that is what you find at this site. There are lesson ideas and activities for all grade levels (K-12). The activities are broken down into grades K-2, 3-5, 6-8, and 9-12. Each level includes several "Teacher's Guides." In grades K-2, the site's goal is for students to learn about trees and their parts using writing, science, and math! The Grades 3-5 section focuses on the life cycle of conifer trees. This level also discusses how real trees are recycled, the types of trees grown on farms, and new vocabulary words. In grades 6-8 students learn about the life cycles and scientific names of the trees and take a look (first-hand) into the life of a real tree grower. Grades 9-12 challenges students to dig deeper into the soil and check out how REAL TREE growers keep their crops healthy, how supply and demand works, and more details about conifers. There are many other highlights at this site: ready to go units, photos, and more. The TF editorial staff checked many of the links; there were two not working at the time of this review. However, the other 30-40 links did work. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): conservation (127), earth (228), earth day (112), plants (144), trees (30)

In the Classroom

Use this site to "spruce" up Earth Day or your study of plants and trees! The Teacher's Guides are basically ready-to-go units of study. Some of the activities are more interactive than others. If you are looking for a more "technology" friendly activity, consider having students create a wiki guide to the various trees in their hometowns (or around their school). Or have them create a video "Tree Tour." Share the videos using a tool such as SchoolTube (reviewed here).
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Punny Costumes - Bonnie Neubauer

Grades
4 to 7
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Who needs Halloween when you can have costumes based on word play? Think beyond October 31. At Punny Costumes, you will find a list of simple (no sewing required) Halloween ...more
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Who needs Halloween when you can have costumes based on word play? Think beyond October 31. At Punny Costumes, you will find a list of simple (no sewing required) Halloween costumes that are all based on word plays. The website claims that these idiom costumes will, "elicit moans and groans from bad puns." Some of the costume ideas include "All Thumbs," "Black Holes," and "Hip Chick".

tag(s): costumes (6), halloween (40), idioms (44)

In the Classroom

You may want to list this link on your website for parents and students to use at home (to create some "unique" costumes). Challenge your students to create some additional "Word Play Costume" ideas. Plan a Punny Costume day as a culmination of your idioms unit! Be sure to share pictures (unidentifiable) on your class wiki or have students vote for their favorite costume picture using an embedded polling tool such as Poll Junkie (reviewed here).

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