TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of Feb 26, 2017
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
GradesK to 12
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In the ClassroomEvery teacher will want to bookmark this site as a resource for book ideas throughout the school year. Be sure to share this site with your school's media teacher for finding new materials to add to your school library. Search to find books on any topic or subject to use in your classroom library. Create a classroom center with books found through this blog. Don't forget to look through the many excellent classroom teaching ideas. Create a link to The Classroom Bookshelf on your class website for parents; they will appreciate the many book ideas to read at home. Challenge cooperative learning groups to create video book reviews using a tool like Moovly, reviewed here, or Powtoon, reviewed here, and share them on a site such as TeacherTube, reviewed here.
GradesK to 9
In the ClassroomIf you teach reading or are an ENL/ESL or resource teacher for students with special needs, you will want to bookmark this site! Take advantage of all of the free downloads on the site, including forms, checklists, lessons, and reading passages. Share this site with parents to help them understand the process of learning to read and finding materials for their student. Share this site during professional development sessions when discussing reading instruction and alignment to Common Core Standards. Be sure to sign up for TextProject's monthly newsletter to stay up to date with all new additions to the site.
GradesK to 3
In the ClassroomSight Words is an excellent resource to share with parents. Include a link to this site on your class website and newsletters. Share this site with classroom tutors and helpers for use when working with students. Share this link with student teachers as an excellent resource for beginning reading instruction. Find ideas to implement in your classroom. Create flashcards for your students. Try the Sight Word Games in your own classroom as a learning center or even whole class games!
Grades1 to 7
tag(s): book lists (124), book reports (27), classroom management (139), guided reading (36), independent reading (105), reading comprehension (123), remote learning (46), social networking (83), Teacher Utilities (114)
In the ClassroomCreate your account with one of several social media programs, or your email, teacher name, username, and some basic information. Create your dashboard by adding a class and class name. You can create multiple classes. From the teacher dashboard on right menu choose Teacher Resources to view the several teacher video tutorials to get started. Click the class name to add students; student accounts can be created manually or by importing an XLS or CSV file. Students will automatically be "friends" with other students in the same class, but can also invite students from different classes. Share this site with students (and parents at back to school night) using your interactive whiteboard or projector. Students also have video tutorials; show students the video tutorial "How to Add Books" to get them started. In your blended or remote learning classroom enhance students' learning for this tool using the tutorial (s) along with Vizia, reviewed here, to add comments and information. Students can create bookshelves for books they are reading, that they have read, and that they want to read. Students can earn points and badges for the books they read. This tool will get students excited about reading since they can connect with friends to share book reviews and swap book recommendations. Students also practice persuasive writing, comprehension, and typing skills by completing reviews, reports, and reading logs online. This tool is great to keep track of student home reading or if you are teaching remotely! Besure to list this site in a parent newsletter or on your website as one to use to avoid the "summer reading slide."
Grades2 to 12
In the ClassroomTake your students to the next level in their reading and reading skills! Sign up students yourself (assigning a password and username). Students can sign up for themselves if they have an email (and school policies permit). The first task is to provide the reading level. Use this site to differentiate reading levels for your students. Use this tool in a blended learning or remote learning classroom so students can have time to read at their own pace, or set up a learning center for use during your L.A. block. This will allow you one-on-one time to begin the program. In a learning support or remedial reading class, especially at upper levels where "reading" is no longer a regular subject, this tool will allow students some autonomy in improving their skills. It will also let them see progress. Discuss with individual students the questions they answered, where the answer was in the reading, etc. Be certain to save this site in your class favorites and list it on your class website for students to access both in and out of the classroom. If students cannot have their own email accounts, consider using a "class set" of Gmail subaccounts, explained here; this tells how to set up Gmail subaccounts to use for any online membership service. Using Gmail subaccounts will provide anonymous interaction within your class.
Grades7 to 12
In the ClassroomChoose a piece to use with your students and model for them how the program works on your interactive whiteboard (or projector). Then assign students to read a piece with a partner in class. Once students are familiar with the format and tools, assign reading for them to complete on their own. Upload current event articles into Actively Learn and write open ended questions for students to answer. Include images or video to go with the article. Use a tool like the Questioning Toolkit, reviewed here, to create some intriguing questions and writing prompts. This is a great tool to use for students with learning differences and ESL/ELL students due to the ability to adjust the text size, color and background, include audio, and the built in dictionary. Besure to check out the blog for ideas about teaching divisive topics, an infographic for close reading stategies, and more.
GradesK to 8
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In the ClassroomAdd this website to your classroom computers, websites, and newsletters for parents of ENL/ESL students or beginning readers. This tool is especially helpful at the beginning of the year, as you are learning students' reading levels. Use this tool to differentiate in all primary classes. Although this site was created for English Language Learners, it could still be used by all students including gifted and learning support. Differentiate for your advanced/gifted students in elementary, while meeting Common Core standards of Informational Text. Use these news articles as informational text meeting your Common Core goals. Assign students of different levels the same story at the appropriate level or build skills by sharing the same story as a class. Challenge groups to compare the stories in pairs. Have students create a visual presentation of the story. First have students create a rough draft of their comic using Printable Comic Strip Templates, reviewed here. For Level 1 readers have them create their final comic using ToonyTool, reviewed here, for Level 3 readers use Write Comics, reviewed here.
Grades1 to 6
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tag(s): authors (97), book lists (124), dyslexia (10), literacy (84), literature (220), parents (61), phonics (37), reading comprehension (123), reading lists (72), reading strategies (56), speech (70), spelling (87)