TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of Oct 14, 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
Grades2 to 8
tag(s): animals (265), brain (53), butterflies (10), earth (173), earthquakes (44), environment (220), human body (91), hurricanes (28), insects (59), light (47), oceans (133), planets (109), plants (136), solar system (95), spiders (10), stars (60), sun (59), tornadoes (12), volcanoes (52), weather (156), whales (10)
In the ClassroomEnroll on the site using your email address. Access and use teacher guides along with Seymour Simon books during Guided or Independent Reading. View videos on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) to learn more about the author and watch ebooks. Share Seymour Simon's bio with students when using his books as part of a non-fiction unit -- perfect for Common Core informational texts! Challenge students to create a talking avatar using a photo or other image (legally permitted to be reproduced). The avatars can be used to explain or review any of Seymour Simon's books or articles from the Science blog. Use a site such as Blabberize, reviewed here, to create "talking" avatars. Create a link to the site on classroom computers for students to explore items such as the Science Dictionary or read and discuss items from the Science News.
Grades4 to 12
In the Classroom"Gamification" of learning is a hot topic in 21st century learning. Use this simple tool to make it happen. Use for any digital storytelling: fact or fiction. In social studies, have students create an interactive game based on life during the Depression or any historic era. Have them create a "Where in the world is ..." for geography. World language students could make a simple game (in the language they are studying) about daily life. Gifted students will love creating games on their favorite topics, so make this a research-and-create-a-game approach for independent projects. Science students could make a game about what might happen in certain weather or life as a fossil. Have your language arts students create mystery or survival stories or even a different ending to a story you've read together. Warning: all stories are PUBLIC and your students will be able to view other's stories. You'll either want to have a class account or monitor this closely.
Grades8 to 12
In the ClassroomView field trip resources on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) during your Civil War or Civil Rights units. Use this site to demonstrate Google Earth tours and Google Sketchup (used to create 3 dimensional models of buildings). Challenge students to create their own model or tour of any place discussed in class. For more information about Google Earth see our full review (here). Likewise, if you want to learn more about Google Sketchup see our full review (here).
Grades7 to 12
In the ClassroomUse these articles for research when discussing genetic disorders, infectious disease agents, or any other research topic. Health classes and biology classes can use this as one source for research projects. Be sure to include this link on your class site as places to find information.
GradesK to 12
This site includes advertising.
In the ClassroomUse to alter documents that may have been saved as a PDF in the past. Save this site in your professional resources. If you work with students who request college recommendations or need to fill out forms for scholarships or jobs, be sure to share this tool with them!
Grades7 to 12
This site includes advertising.
In the ClassroomYour students, 13 and over, may register by email if you want them to create a page to present a project, or for club web pages. Use a whole class account for students under 13. This program would be nice for developing student portfolios, small group presentations, even journals about career research. Create a Wix website page to publish biographical information about any historical figure in any subject area. Use Wix to create pages about characters in a novel. Create pages about scientists and their contributions including reactions of others to their discovery or invention. Research why these inventions were particularly important and the scientific knowledge that changed as a result. Create a page about artists, musicians, politicians, etc. using the same guidelines as above with scientists. Challenge students to step into the person's character to create an informative understanding about the person and their contribution. In upper elementary grades, have all students generate a starter page offline about a famous person (or people) you are studying. Then vote on one to publish as a class using this online tool. Have teens begin a "Me" portfolio in middle grades, one that they can continue to develop as they approach college and/or career. Encourage them to showcase links to online projects, favorite images they have taken or created, artwork, music, writing samples, and personal interests. This is the ideal way to build a positive digital footprint that students can actually use well into the future. If you teach gifted students, encourage them to add suitable projects from your class to their portfolio site, especially projects that involve connections with the "real world."
Parent permission advised before posting student work created using this tool
Includes Interaction w general public/ public galleries with unmoderated content
Includes social features, such as "friends," comments, ratings by others
Requires registration/log-in (WITH email)
Premium version (not free) includes additional features or storage
Products can be shared by URL