TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of Sep 23, 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

 

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AllSides - John Gable

Grades
4 to 12
10 Favorites 0  Comments
Look at political, national and international issues from all sides: left, right, and center. Colored banners identify the perspective. Current content focuses on political discussions,...more
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Look at political, national and international issues from all sides: left, right, and center. Colored banners identify the perspective. Current content focuses on political discussions, but as the site evolves the plan is to include other topics such as health care, finances, and parenting. Find other specific topics by choosing the issues tab, then choosing from keywords such as energy, taxes, or violence in America. Choose from different tabs to view issues, bias, and the site's blog. Especially interesting is the bias section. Users rate their own bias on several issues to determine their bias toward left, center, or right. Email signup is available to become involved with the site but isn't necessary to access all of the articles and content.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): elections (74), media literacy (83), politics (100)

In the Classroom

This is an excellent site to easily find topics presented from various points of view. Use articles with students to demonstrate point of view in writing, bias in media, or for students to use as points for debates. Use an online tool such as Interactive Three Circle Venn Diagram, reviewed here, to create a visual comparison of different points of view.

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Sub Hub - Rachel Friedrich

Grades
K to 12
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This blog offers ideas and resources to help substitute teachers make the most out of every day. It includes practical ideas such as what to bring to school as a ...more
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This blog offers ideas and resources to help substitute teachers make the most out of every day. It includes practical ideas such as what to bring to school as a substitute (who would have thought to bring your own "teacher-friendly" pencil sharpener?). There are also free k-5 lesson plans. The best part is all of the tips, support, and stories provided for substitute teachers "in the trenches." Although geared toward elementary teachers, ideas and suggestions are appropriate for any grade level.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): classroom management (145), newbies (15), substitutes (16)

In the Classroom

Regular classroom teachers might want to share this in their emergency lesson plans for subs. Substitutes, don't go into the classroom empty handed. Bookmark this useful website (or make it a TeachersFirst Favorite so you can find it anytime) and be prepared for the unexpected! New teachers and student teachers can learn from the many tips. If you are mentoring or working with a student teacher, share some of these ideas. For even more, be sure to check out Teachers First's Ideas and Resources for Substitutes here.

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Rooh it: Instant Web Highlighter - RoohIt, Inc

Grades
4 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Highlight and share specific information within web pages with this application. Rooh it works instantly for highlighting information on web pages while web surfing. Automatically clip,...more
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Highlight and share specific information within web pages with this application. Rooh it works instantly for highlighting information on web pages while web surfing. Automatically clip, collect, bookmark, and share online content via e-mail, Facebook, Twitter and more with just one click. Create highlights using several different methods. Download Rooh it by dragging and dropping the bookmarklet on your browser's tool bar then click the bookmarklet before highlighting information. You can also try entering rooh.it/ before the http of any webpage URL and your cursor turns into a highlighter. It is actually easiest to simply enter the site URL in the box on the main Rooh it page.

tag(s): browser (6), note taking (36)

In the Classroom

Consider using this tool as a way to direct students to specific points of web pages. Include directions in your notes. Assign specific tasks, such as pre-reading questions using the notes feature. Even without "sharing" a URL, use this resource to keep track of specific points for discussion later. Have students use this tool for research papers and other projects. Share current events with others, highlighting specific points. Simply paste the highlighted URLs into a word doc to save and reopen later. Use this resource as an organizational tool for content found on the web. Have students annotate their own pages including their own pre-reading questions, main idea sentences, or summaries using highlighting and notes on a text-based page. Have them explicate poetry, annotate motifs in online literary works, point out fallacies in arguments used in blog posts, or highlight evidence of bias in web page content. They can "turn in" their assignments to you or share them with classmates by URL.

Keep a word document with the URLs to your annotated pages and notes about what they are if you plan to assign them to students. If you plan to use this as a TEACHER only, there are no safety/security concerns at all. Be sure to check with your IT department about installing bookmarklets and using this site on district computers. No registration is required. Encourage students to use this responsibly and not highlight information considered inappropriate for school.

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Mathematical Quotations Server - Mark Woodard, Furman University

Grades
6 to 12
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Find endless mathematical quotations. Search the site by keyword, browse by first letter of the authors' last names, or follow a link to receive a random quote. Download the entire...more
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Find endless mathematical quotations. Search the site by keyword, browse by first letter of the authors' last names, or follow a link to receive a random quote. Download the entire collection (83 pages) using the link on the home page.

tag(s): probability (113), quotations (21), statistics (117)

In the Classroom

Use this site to find a quote of the week for your math classroom. Ask students to respond with their own thoughts. Begin each new unit with an appropriate quotation to spark classroom discussion and determine prior knowledge. Hang the quote on your wall throughout the unit. Use the list as examples of mathematical quotes and challenge students to create their own quote. Then ask them to create a talking avatar using a photo or other image (legally permitted to be reproduced) using a tool such as Blabberize, reviewed here. The avatars can be say the quotation.

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Symphony of science - John Boswell

Grades
8 to 12
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This project "spreads scientific knowledge and philosophy through musical remixes." Audio and video snippets of television programs that feature popular scientists and educators are...more
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This project "spreads scientific knowledge and philosophy through musical remixes." Audio and video snippets of television programs that feature popular scientists and educators are used to explain phenomena and theories. The audio and video mashups are set to music. Be sure to check out two of the popular videos: "A Glorious Dawn" and "We are All Connected" to encourage discussion of the topics and themes being "discussed." Some topics may have offer a distinct side of a multi-faceted issue, but the videos will engage you and really get you thinking.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): atoms (48), ecology (111), life cycles (20), matter (52), space (215), video (240)

In the Classroom

Provide a link to the site on a classroom computer or class website. Introduce Big Ideas or themes in Science with one of the videos to encourage discussions and generate questions for research. Share the mashups on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Capitalize on gifted students' powerful sense of justice and concern about social issues and spark some truly creative music/science projects by sharing these examples in your gifted program.

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Dr. Carlson's Science Theater - Dr. Carlson Science Theater

Grades
6 to 12
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Find your way to the "home of the best science demonstrations on the web." Included are videos, interviews about chemistry, physics, and science and "Extras." Find videos such Walking...more
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Find your way to the "home of the best science demonstrations on the web." Included are videos, interviews about chemistry, physics, and science and "Extras." Find videos such Walking on Water, The Heisenberg Uncertainty, The Sweat Episode, The Bernoulli Effect, Inertia, Pendulums, Protein Folding and many others. Interviews with scientists give a clearer explanation of scientific concepts. If interested, subscribe by rss feed, email, or iTunes. Videos are mp4 files, so you may need to load a plug-in or "allow" your browser to play them.

tag(s): electricity (70), light (48), matter (52), motion (49), newton (23), optics (14), scientific method (59), waves (16), weather (176)

In the Classroom

Use as a reinforcement or enrichment tool, depending on the students' needs. Embed or link to relevant videos on your website, blog, or wiki for students to view (and review) outside of the classroom. Share the videos on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) and use as an anticipatory guide for science concepts presented -- or even as a review. Use as a creative example of a presentation in a subject area content. Challenge students to create their own videos about a specific science topic. Share the videos on a site such as TeacherTube reviewed here.

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Duplichecker - Duplichecker

Grades
4 to 12
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Take advantage of this FREE online plagiarism checker. Scroll down slightly to find the text entry boxes. Copy and paste your text to be checked or upload the file as ...more
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Take advantage of this FREE online plagiarism checker. Scroll down slightly to find the text entry boxes. Copy and paste your text to be checked or upload the file as a .txt file (maximum 1000 words) . Choose whether the quotes will be checked as a group of words (Without Quotes) or as a quote by clicking the appropriate button. Choose your choice of search engine: Google, Yahoo, MSN, or other. When choosing between the Advanced search option and New Version, the New Version option appears to provide the best results.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): plagiarism (31)

In the Classroom

Students can use this plagiarism checker to be sure they are turning in original work. Teachers can use this service to check the work of students (if submitted electronically). Model this site to explain what plagiarism IS and how students can avoid it. Share this site at the beginning of the school year. The hands-on experience will help them understand this challenging concept. You might even want to provide several examples of plagiarized writing as an exercise for student to check and correct before they copy/paste their way to trouble in a research assignment. Another interesting exercise for researchers is to locate an article on a how-to topic, such as "How to Paint a Room," then see how many sites use the exact same text. As a class, discuss whether this proliferation is good or bad (is the web spreading misinformation, too?). Be sure to check out their paraphrasing tool!

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