TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of Jun 22, 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

 

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Audio Expert - AudioExpert

Grades
1 to 12
4 Favorites 0  Comments
  
Audio Expert is a free and simple online audio editor, file converter, and sound recorder. This tool has all of the standard functionality of an audio editor. It provides students ...more
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Audio Expert is a free and simple online audio editor, file converter, and sound recorder. This tool has all of the standard functionality of an audio editor. It provides students and teachers with an easy way to create a podcast or even a ringtone for a cell phone. The Audio Expert can also be used as a powerful audio file converter that will allow you to modify your file format, bit rate, and frequency. If your computer is equipped with a camera and microphone, you can use Audio Expert to record your own sounds. You can download completed files.

tag(s): podcasts (62)

In the Classroom

Use Audio Expert in early grades to promote literacy by recording your students and creating an audio portfolio record of their reading. Use this tool with ESL/ELL students to practice fluency and hearing themselves speak. Use Audio Expert to record parents, principals, lunch ladies, librarians, relatives, and bus drivers all telling your favorite class story. During writing time, allow students freedom from the pencil to express their true creative voices. Also dabble into digital storytelling to create a lesson in adding voice, emotion, and characterization. Record audio interviews at a local nursing home, fire stations, or museums to recollect times such as wars, the Great Depression, Civil Rights Movements, or as a primary source at memorable events. Record world language conversations as a student project. Make music class or the school band a gold recording!

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Literably - Tyler Borek and Habib Moody

Grades
K to 8
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Use Literably to assess students' oral reading and comprehension. Literably will display a text, administer the reading assessment, score it, generate an audio recording, and keep a...more
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Use Literably to assess students' oral reading and comprehension. Literably will display a text, administer the reading assessment, score it, generate an audio recording, and keep a running record. It will also report words correct per minute, percentage accuracy, and a leveling recommendation. Literably also provides readers' Lexile measures, grade levels, and guided reading levels. Test comprehension levels using open response or multiple choice questions. Register with an email, and set up a class easily. Keep your username short for ease of registration by primary students. The free account allows for testing 10 students per calendar month. Student sign in is extremely easy, even for a first grader. Print results or email to parents for easy sharing. IMPORTANT Note: Results (accuracy and WPM) are not available instantly and take up to 18-24 hours to arrive via email or be posted on the site. Literably is compatible with most browsers, and there is a free iPad app.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): assessment (127), fluency (23), literacy (108), reading comprehension (132)

In the Classroom

After creating a class list, either choose readings based on your estimate for each student or let Literably choose them. You will need to demonstrate on a projector or whiteboard where to click to Allow the mike to work. Set up a center (or several) in your classroom and rotate students through it. The free account allows your to test five students, but there is a work around. If you have Gmail, you can use the subaccounts feature to create "new email addresses." See how to do this here. This tells how to set up Gmail subaccounts to use for any online membership service. Using Gmail subaccounts will allow you to test more than five students. The Literably results and ability to give parents expert feed back on their students literacy skills make creating Gmail subaccounts well worth your time! You will probably want to use headsets with microphones to limit distractions when using Literably. However, the built in microphone on the computer will work just fine. This tool is perfect for reporting to parents and administrators. It's also great for resource teachers to share during IEP meetings. Turn this assessment tool into a teaching tool by having students listen to their recordings and follow the text to pause the incorrect recording and read it correctly. Have them try the same reading again to see if they can improve their score.

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Timemapper - Open Knowledge Foundation Labs

Grades
6 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
   
This free tool maps dates, information, and locations specified on a loaded spreadsheet into a timeline format. See the Examples on the middle portion of the page to see the ...more
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This free tool maps dates, information, and locations specified on a loaded spreadsheet into a timeline format. See the Examples on the middle portion of the page to see the results! You need a Google Docs/Drive account to create a timeline. Work anonymously or log in using your Twitter account. Click "Get Started Now" to read the details and create your spreadsheet, using a template Google Doc spreadsheet available by clicking where it says, "this template." Read the 1-2-3 steps AND the FAQ lower on the page to understand the steps and the reasons why you might want to create a free account using your Twitter login (not required). Once published with the url loaded into the Timemapper form, data from the spreadsheet is displayed in Timemapper in a slide style format. Data can include images, citations, locations, and more. Move along the timeline at the bottom of the screen or advance through the screens. Locations are pinpointed on a map that displays alongside the timeline. Click on individual locations or see them highlighted as you advance through the screens. Use the embed code to place the Timemapper in your wiki, site, or blog. You can also share it by url. Note: Timemappers cannot be made private.

tag(s): timelines (54)

In the Classroom

Create Timemapper timelines to introduce material in any subject. If your school uses Google Apps or Docs/Drive, your students (or groups) can create their own very easily. Map specific battles in history (World War II or the Revolutionary War, perhaps?) Map significant scientific discoveries in the progress of understanding about cell theory or genetics. Follow the works of various writers, artists, or musicians. Follow the life of famous people or noteworthy events such as elections, the Olympics, or even local history!

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Foodista - Foodista

Grades
3 to 12
2 Favorites 0  Comments
  
Foodista is a community of food lovers who share and exchange all things food! Find recipes and cooking ideas, food news, holiday ideas, health and nutrition, video directions, question...more
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Foodista is a community of food lovers who share and exchange all things food! Find recipes and cooking ideas, food news, holiday ideas, health and nutrition, video directions, question and answers, blogs, and an RSS feed. Add a recipe or share on social media.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): cooking (35), holidays (143), nutrition (167)

In the Classroom

Capture every student's heart (or stomach) with Foodista! Introduce on your interactive whiteboard or projector for learning how to write, read, and follow directions. This site is sure to make some stomachs grumble and some mouths water! In math class, explore or multiply fractions used in recipes. In science, FACS, or health class, explore the nutrition side of Foodista. Help students gain a better understanding of diabetes or food allergies. Use to create food for special celebrations of literature or in social studies as you study cultures around the world. Allow students to choose food for special class celebrations. In your FACS class, use the blog area as a weekly update for new recipe, home care, and nutrition ideas.

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School Report Writer - School Report Writer

Grades
K to 12
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Take the hassle out of report card comments and school report writing (by teachers) with School Report Writer. Join for free to keep your comments handy. This time saving, free ...more
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Take the hassle out of report card comments and school report writing (by teachers) with School Report Writer. Join for free to keep your comments handy. This time saving, free program gives you instant access to hundreds of comments. Use comments that are already there or create your own. Enter your comments in the create space, find automatic initial sentences, concluding sentences, synonyms, a grammar checker, and a spell checker. Save your comments on your own device, copy/paste into your school report card system, or share with the community. Take the time to view the screenshots or video from the links at top right to see how this tool works.
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tag(s): assessment (127)

In the Classroom

Avoid writers' block and embarrassing misspellings or errors by perusing through ready-made comments. Why reinvent the wheel when so many great comments are already available! If you choose to create your own comments, be sure to share them. Add your own topics, assignments, and lists to save to your free account. Save your best comments from each narrative to share with others or for years to come. Save time and sanity on report cards using this fabulous resource. You might even ask your students to suggest some positive comments they would like to see on their own report cards. If they know you have them ready to use, they may strive to achieve them!
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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