TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of Feb 9, 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
Grades4 to 9
tag(s): animals (259), atoms (41), cells (80), climate (79), dna (44), energy (129), human body (94), matter (46), molecules (38), moon (69), motion (44), rock cycle (11), water cycle (21), weather (159)
In the ClassroomPlay songs on an Interactive Whiteboard or Projector for the entire class. Embed videos on your teacher page for review by students. Use these songs as an introduction to units. After viewing a video, brainstorm to identify words students know or are not familiar with. Copy the lyrics into a document and, as you discuss the material in class, encourage students to annotate the lyrics with notes about the content. Be sure to play the video often throughout the unit to reconnect with material. Challenge your more musical students to team up with a class poet to write your own songs-- for extra credit and extra fun! They could use Soundtrap, reviewed here, for this musical endeavor.
Grades6 to 12
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In the ClassroomFind interesting photographs to use as creative writing prompts and for daily journal writing. Be sure to explore the site on your own before sharing with students who will be distracted by ads as this site is heavy with unfiltered advertising. Project the image full screen to avoid seeing as many distractions. Art and photography teachers will enjoy using this site for sharing interesting examples of design principles on the fly. It is not easy to "find" a photo from another session easily, so open the site and keep it open if you want to keep a certain photo on your screen. Alternatively, open the image to the large view and copy the url for the photo (or mark in Favorites) to revisit it later. Assign students (those who can ignore ads) to "collect" urls for a curated collection of images illustrating a design principle or demonstrating a photographic style they would like to present to the class.
GradesK to 12
In the ClassroomUse Calendly to schedule parent or student conferences that meet mutual scheduling needs. Create events for professional development sessions. Have participants choose a time for attending or presenting at sessions. Share with your school's Parent Teacher Organization as an excellent scheduling tool for any event. Link this up with your Google Calendar and save time, emails, phone calls, and more!
Grades7 to 12
In the ClassroomThis site is perfect for use on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Use with practice problems or when comparing different processes for obtaining solutions. Create a link on classroom computers for students to use when checking work. Share a link on your class website for students to use at home. Have students provide their attempts at problem solving. Print the solution using cym@th. Have students share where they were stuck or having problems in finding a correct answer. How do you prevent this from becoming an instant homework "cheat"? Always start with actual word problems, not equations, so students must first generate their own equations. Require students to "show their work" on paper as they solve, including the explanation of each step. Even if they are copying from the web site, they are still copying down the explanations. If they use their own words, that will show comprehension. How else could you prevent using this tool as a "cheat"? Feel free to add a comment!
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomThis site is perfect for use on your interactive whiteboard or with a projector. View together to explore and learn about different portions of the brain. Discuss various strategies that are shared at this site. Have students create a word cloud of the important terms they learn from this site using a tool such as Wordle (reviewed here), Tagxedo (reviewed here), or WordItOut (reviewed here). Have students create a simple infographic sharing their findings using Easel.ly, reviewed here or Venngage reviewed here.
Grades3 to 12
In the ClassroomShare polls on a projector or interactive whiteboard to discuss and informally assess prior knowledge as you start a new unit, asking questions about the material. Discuss in groups why students would choose a particular answer to uncover misconceptions. Use for Daily quiz questions to check student understanding as a means of formative assessment. Use a class account to have student groups alternate to create a new poll for the next day. Place a poll on your teacher web page as a homework inspiration or to ask questions to increase parent involvement. Older students may want to include polls on their student blogs to increase reader involvement. Have students create polls to use at the start of project presentations. Use polls to generate data for math class (graphing), during elections, or for critical thinking activities dealing with the interpretation of statistics. Use "real" data to engage students on issues and current events that matter to them.
Grades4 to 12
tag(s): 1600s (15), american revolution (72), civil war (122), colonization (14), great depression (23), industrial revolution (17), literacy (82), native americans (74), westward expansion (32), world war 2 (130)
In the ClassroomFind many lesson plans, resources, and primary documents to enrich your history lessons. Make a splash with visual learners by starting class with artifacts from an era displayed on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Explore primary sources and historic texts as part of a Common Core literacy program cooperating among English, reading, and history teachers. Have your students sign up to enjoy access to all the resources. Challenge cooperative learning groups to choose a specific historical time period and become "experts." Have the groups create presentations to share with the class about what they learn. Use a tool like Zoho Show (similar to Powerpoint, but easier and free) reviewed here.
Grades8 to 12
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