TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of Jan 5, 2014
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
Grades9 to 12
In the ClassroomA wonderful extension or enrichment project for responsible high school students, the Transcription Center allows students to interact with primary sources, learn about the importance of everyday records of the lives of those who go before us, and have the satisfaction of knowing they are contributing to the universe of information that will be available to future scholars. Small groups of students could share a transcription project and check each other's before submitting, or discuss the texts they have transcribed. Students interested in independent research might find a transcription project that adds to their understanding of a particular subject. You might even consider using transcription as a community service project or an initiative in your gifted ed class.
Grades5 to 8
In the ClassroomThe trick in using All About Explorers is to keep the real lesson a secret at the beginning and allow students to come to their own conclusion. Processing that "aha!" moment when students recognize that there is a hidden agenda here will have a much more lasting impression than simply telling students they cannot believe everything they read. Deep inside, students often believe they can easily tell the difference between the Truth and something that is misleading or downright false. All About Explorers will help them see how difficult that can be. They might also learn something about explorers in the process! Extend this lesson by having student groups find another suspect site and create a screencast of that "suspicious" site, pointing out characteristics that indicate an unreliable source. A tool such as Screencast-o-matic, reviewed here, or Screencastify (Chrome app), reviewed here, will allow them to create a "tour" of the fallacies they find.
GradesK to 6
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In the ClassroomSign up to receive site updates on Pinterest, Facebook, or through your RSS reader. Be sure to bookmark this site to search for science activities throughout the year. Share a link to an activity on your website or parent newsletter as an at-home activity. Ask parents to send pictures or videos of the activity done at home to share with the class. Complete activities in class then share them on a service such as TeacherTube reviewed here.
Great site for your IWBMelissa, , Grades: 0 - 5
Grades4 to 12
In the ClassroomThis site is perfect for use in any music classroom. Demonstrate how Chordify works on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Use this site for teaching any piece of music. Share a link with students for practice at home. If your school blocks YouTube, you could share the link with your music students on your class website to try at home.
Grades6 to 11
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tag(s): angles (86), area (70), charts and graphs (205), equations (156), exponents (44), factoring (32), factors (40), functions (69), geometric shapes (171), inequalities (25), polynomials (29), pythagorean theorem (34), quadratics (33), square roots (21)
In the ClassroomIf you don't want to provide an email address for quizzes, use a disposable email address tool such as Mail Catch reviewed here to obtain a temporary email address. Share links to videos on your class website or blog and on classroom computers for student viewing. Use videos as inspiration to create your own math videos or challenge cooperative learning groups to create videos and share them on a site such as TeacherTube reviewed here.
GradesK to 8
In the ClassroomThis site is perfect for use as an anticipatory set or "activator" to introduce a unit or lesson on a projector or interactive whiteboard. Look for authors of favorite read-alouds you use in your classroom and share their videos. Make a shortcut to this site on classroom computers and use it as a learning center. View an author's video then share their books in your classroom reading center or as an author of the month. Have students create an annotated image including text boxes and related links using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here to explain their own writing process.
In the ClassroomUse your projector to show your class the different dialects for different areas of the U.S. Choose one of the kid-popular questions, i.e. Do you call a carbonated drink a soda, pop, or Coke? Show students how the results for your geographical area compare to others. If the New York Times site is still available, have students try the survey themselves for homework. Help students to notice that language is dynamic and changes according to region. Emphasize that using a dialect is not incorrect. They do not represent a language deficiency. Speaking a vernacular dialect is not the result of poor or incomplete language learning. Correctness in language is a matter of social acceptability. Though there is a "standard" English taught in schools, dialects must be respected as evidence of social identity and linguistic expertise. What are some examples students can give for special ways their family says something? What about in a social context, as in country western fans vs rapper fans? This site is also helpful for ESL/ELL and world language students to REALIZE that pronunciations and word choice vary and can identify where the speaker is from.
Grades4 to 10
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In the ClassroomPair this information and the related activities with classroom content, video clips, and data about related events (spreading of disease, space travel, etc.) Create discussions about various technologies, discoveries, and more to engage your students in the topics you are studying. Share the video clips on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Share this link on your class website for students to explore at home and learn more about how Hollywood uses science and math in film, television, and beyond. Include this site in a careers unit so students can see how science can lead to many different careers.
Grades8 to 12
tag(s): charts and graphs (205), decades (10), division (159), equations (156), exponents (44), factoring (32), factors (40), inequalities (25), multiples (31), multiplication (209), polynomials (29), quadratics (33), ratios (66), venn diagrams (19)
In the ClassroomBe sure to save this site in your favorites (or bookmark) for use throughout the school year. View videos on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Create a link on classroom computers for students to view on their own. Share a link on your class website or blog for easy home reference. If students discover a particularly helpful video, encourage them to "review" it, explaining how it helped them understand. With so many math video collections available, your students can become "video critics."
Unfortunately, Patrick tends to make mistakes in some of his presentations. It is important to view the presentations before assigning them to students.Honora, FL, Grades: 6 - 12
Editor's Note: Thank you for making us aware of that you found an errors in a presentation. As far as our editorial team can tell after checking with the commenter above, this was single incidence. It is always wise for teachers to preview anything you will use in class.
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomBe sure to check with your Technology Department, as many districts require authorization to download or install new applications. Plan ahead as you request that this application be installed on your classroom or laptop cart computers. Alice provides an opportunity to enhance learning for students by creating and learning how to problem solve. Subscribe to the teacher list to receive updates and integration ideas for Alice. The purpose of this list is to provide an easy way to ask questions and collaborate with the Alice teaching community. View and use activities to increase programming knowledge and the use of the Alice program.
Students quickly catch on to Alice when allowed to play and easily see what they can make from it. Provide a simple assignment with defined rules/tasks to learn the tools as well as the drag and drop interface. Have students use a storyboard to organize their creation in order to keep tabs on students and their creations. Replace the paper and pencil storyboard by using a digital storyboard like Story Map, reviewed here, or Storyboard Generator, reviewed here. Build games to review curricular material for assessments. Have students create videos or digital stories to bring a subject to life. Teachers of gifted can turn their students loose to create animations about individual interests or research projects.
Grades4 to 12
In the ClassroomYour students' online research will be efficient and effective with Scrible. Students can take notes on their bookmarks. They only need to bookmark the part of the website they need for their assignment. Students can collaborate with peers on their research. Post articles and documents online for your students to highlight and annotate. Bookmark this tool on your website or blog for your students to access in or outside of the classroom. Use Scrible to annotate professional development articles or to highlight important information for your students. The best part? It will instantly create your bibliography for you!
How many times have we heard students complain during a group project, "But I couldn't get to his or her house to work on it?" Tell them to use Scrible 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 and share discussion assignments on specific articles or even parts of articles using the highlighting tool. Find a relevant article to your subject. Highlight the part that you want students to read. (If students are younger, keep it short to reduce the intimidating reality of too much information for kids.) Attach a note with a discussion question for the students. Have them comment on the link in a "class discussion" as an outside assignment. If you are fortunate enough to have all students with computer access in your class and at home, such as in one to one laptop (or BYOD) program schools, you can use this essentially to run your class. Post assignments or post readings. Science teachers can post online interactive labs, and more.
Grades1 to 4
In the ClassroomIn the classroom, use this information for your water cycle unit or weather unit. Use the interactives on your Interactive whiteboard (or projector). Share the activities with your whole class or small groups. Use at centers for further exploration. Use as a nonfiction text to help meet the Common Core standards. Add to your class website as a resource students can access both in and out of class.
Grades9 to 12
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