TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of Jan 8, 2012
Here are this week's features. Clicking the tags in the description area of each listing will present a list of other resources with this topic. | Click here to return to the Featured Sites Archive
Grades5 to 12
In the ClassroomReel Life Wisdom supports character education programs with a parent PDF offering useful tips. Use relevant quotes in discussions on theme, choice, and empowerment. Lead your students to understand they are in charge of their lives. Improve reading comprehension of any text, by making connections or comparisons to a movie. Strengthen writing skills by critiques, explanations, and point of view essays. Challenge students to reach a deeper understanding of theme by finding a quote to match the theme. Use movies as an example for positive, effective goal setting strategies. Develop written or oral language by using the quotes as writing/speaking prompts. Challenge students to discover the many choices available to every individual. Encourage a meaningful sense of story development while connecting to each student's interest. The movies also offer a personal story into the study of people, government, and values. Create a thematic bulletin board of quotes on a topic, or have students generate word clouds from several favorite quotes on the same theme. Use a tool such as Wordle, reviewed here. Post the clouds for class inspiration. During the first week of school, share this site and ask each student to share a favorite quote on a class blog or wiki for students to get to know each other.
Grades4 to 12
Embed the videos easily into your blog, wiki, or site for use with students. This site does allow users to submit their own videos, but this appears to be for a fee and mainly for businesses looking to advertise or promote a service.
This site includes advertising.
In the ClassroomShare these short videos on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Find videos related to the content you are teaching. For example, the "What is the flu?" animation gives a great amount of information about colds and flu. Begin your lesson by asking students common statements or questions about what they understand about the cold or the flu. Show the results on a board and then share the video. (Embedding it in a site that you already have is a really great idea.) Identify the actual information to counter the common misconceptions. Find great animations related to technology and using computer and Web 2.0 tools. Divide students into cooperative learning groups to explore the site. Have them report information learned to the others. Challenge groups to create an animated explanation using one of the many TeachersFirst Edge animation tools here.
Grades5 to 12
In the ClassroomMake a flipbook of a presentation as an engaging alternative to a web page or PowerPoint. If you have a Word doc or image instead of a PDF, not to worry! Use PDFaid, reviewed here, to convert them to PDF format. Share classroom information such as rules and expectations in an easy to read format. Use for a great way to bring digital storytelling up front in your classroom. Make photosynthesis a story instead of bits of equations and information. Portray a time period in history or create books of different political or societal opinions. Create a flipbook with the viewpoints and personalities of characters in a story. Practice a different language by creating a themed flipbook. Lower grades can combine writing into a class flipbook to be shared online or read aloud. Any written assignment can easily be re-visioned as a flipbook! Make your literary magazone a flipbook or build new poetry collections during poetry month. Share all your flipbooks on individual laptops, or the interactive whiteboard or projector. Create simple flipbooks of Dolch words for beginning readers.
Parent permission advised before posting student work created using this tool
Requires registration/log-in (WITH email)
Premium version (not free) includes additional features or storage
Products can be embedded
Grades3 to 12
In the ClassroomShare this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Allow students to explore specific composers on their own (or in cooperative learning groups). Have students make a multimedia presentation using one of the many TeachersFirst Edge tools reviewed here. Some tool suggestions are (click on the tool name to access the review): Adobe Spark for Education, Animatron, Sway, and Beautiful.AI.
U.S. and world history teachers will love this site! (As well as music teachers) Use interactives to integrate music into history classes, math classes (for timing and fractions), and English classes (reading and writing about music). All teachers can check out the thematic links for their subject to music. Take advantage of the FREE lesson plans. Chances are good that you could incorporate music into every type of class. Simply check out the education link, and your imagination and educational wheels will start spinning!