TeachersFirst - What's Popular

This page shares the 25 resources most frequently marked as Favorites by TeachersFirst Members in the past 60 days. See what tops the list of TeachersFirst's database of well over 15,000+ educator-reviewed web resources. Find out what other teachers are excited about. Not a TeachersFirst member yet? See the time saving benefits of free TeachersFirst membership

 

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50 Mini-Lessons for Teaching Student Research Skills - Kathleen Morris

Grades
5 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
This PDF provides quick and useful tips for teaching research skills to students from the middle primary grades through high school. The author offers a variety of topics, including...more
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This PDF provides quick and useful tips for teaching research skills to students from the middle primary grades through high school. The author offers a variety of topics, including searching, clarifying, and citing sources, and then gives ideas for activities to teach the skill. The information on the site is concise and to the point, making it perfect for use as a resource in all classrooms.

tag(s): citations (34), Research (20), search strategies (25)

In the Classroom

Bookmark this page to use as a reference when teaching research skills. Consider using this site as a beginning outline of research skills to teach throughout the year then divide each topic into a unit for planning purposes. Use digital tools to reinforce and enhance the lessons. For example, when using the ideas for teaching how to clarify questions, begin with choosing a topic idea. It states to write as many questions as you can for an idea such as koalas. Gather student ideas on your whiteboard, then create a word cloud using Wordsift, reviewed here, to highlight recurring ideas and thoughts. Use this information as a starting point for research, and ask students to share online information into Padlet, reviewed here. Ask older students to use Fiskkit, reviewed here, as a collaborative tool for sharing and discussing online articles. Fiskkit includes tools for sharing online articles and adding highlights and notes with others. Upon completion of research projects, ask students to share their learning using a multimedia presentation tool like Adobe Spark, reviewed here. Have students include original work, images, videos, and more to share their research projects.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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The Wright Experience - The Wright Experience

Grades
5 to 12
3 Favorites 0  Comments
  
The Wright Experience lets you rediscover the innovation and designs of the Wright brothers. Follow the steps in analyzing photographs, making designs, and running tests to make an...more
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The Wright Experience lets you rediscover the innovation and designs of the Wright brothers. Follow the steps in analyzing photographs, making designs, and running tests to make an actual life-sized reproduction of the Wright kites, airplanes, and gliders. In every model, find the design, assembly, control, and flight tests. Follow wind tunnel testing to analyze flight performance and see the reinvention of the Wright Brother's works. Explore the different parts of Orville and Wilbur's planes. The education area features videos showing testing or flights. Find links to many other useful sites. Find the latest news about any flight re-creations. If your district blocks YouTube, they may not be viewable; be sure to look at alternatives for sharing the videos on classroom computers.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): design (89), flight (30), inventors and inventions (84), wright brothers (19)

In the Classroom

Bring the spirit of invention alive in your classroom. Follow the process, from the earlier designs through each later design, each building upon its predecessor. Discover the many types of testing done to determine limits for each problem. The videos of flight will bring your class on board with Wilbur or Orville! Share the videos on your projector (or interactive whiteboard). Discover the steps to the scientific method or design process to apply in other projects. Include this project in a study of leadership or as a lesson in the perseverance of innovation! Use it as an introduction to your Discovery Fair or Science Night.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Wright Brothers - Vocabulary University

Grades
3 to 12
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Learn about the Wright Brothers while you also learn some pivotal aviation vocabulary words. Explore the various vocabulary puzzles offered at this site. At the time of this review,...more
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Learn about the Wright Brothers while you also learn some pivotal aviation vocabulary words. Explore the various vocabulary puzzles offered at this site. At the time of this review, you could complete interactive puzzles, fill in the blank activities, and a definition match. Learn over 205 new vocabulary terms all related to airplanes and aviation.

tag(s): aviation (37), flight (30), wright brothers (19)

In the Classroom

This is a perfect addition to a lesson about the Wright brothers or a science unit about aviation (physics and more). Share the puzzles on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Provide the link on your class website for students to explore at home.

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Re-Living the Wright Way - Tom Benson - NASA

Grades
3 to 12
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This site provides information and resources about the Wright Brothers, their flights, and the science behind their work. The site was created to celebrate the centennial anniversary...more
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This site provides information and resources about the Wright Brothers, their flights, and the science behind their work. The site was created to celebrate the centennial anniversary of the Wright Brothers historic flight. Although the site may appear simple in design, it has many nooks and crannies to explore.

tag(s): aviation (37), flight (30), gravity (52), inventors and inventions (84), motion (70), scientists (71), wright brothers (19)

In the Classroom

This site provides teachers with resources on the topics of Newton's Laws of Motion, The Four Forces of Flight, Lift, Drag, Thrust, Weight, Center of Gravity, Roll, and Pitch. View the videos using an interactive whiteboard or projector. Download the simulations to your classroom computers and have students work in groups to solve them. Have students work cooperatively to complete one of the many activities found on the site like building a model airplane. Students can then conduct an investigation to see whose plane can fly the farthest.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Read Ahead - Full Tilt Ahead, LLC

Grades
3 to 12
2 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Transform any text into a guided reading activity presentation using vocabulary, keywords, and phrases with Read Ahead. Create a presentation highlighting critical components of a text...more
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Transform any text into a guided reading activity presentation using vocabulary, keywords, and phrases with Read Ahead. Create a presentation highlighting critical components of a text passage by choosing keywords or phrases, add your vocabulary list, or use the Smart Skimmer to select items automatically. When complete, your presentation shares featured words and terms with readers before beginning to read the text. Share with students using the created link or through social media links.

tag(s): literacy (107), reading comprehension (131), vocabulary (301), vocabulary development (115)

In the Classroom

Include Read Ahead with your other resources for teaching vocabulary. Read Ahead is perfect for introducing any reading passage to struggling readers, special education students, and ESL/ELL learners. Create presentations for articles found in science or social studies materials to prepare students for difficult vocabulary and phrases. Take advantage of this site to use reading material with your students that might otherwise be above their reading level. Instead of asking students to use vocabulary in sentences to demonstrate understanding, ask them to use the words to create digital stories using an online tool like Book Creator, reviewed here. Book Creator can be used for a variety of assignments in any classroom that is integrating technology as an enhancement, modification, or transformation.

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OK2Ask: Low-Tech and No-Tech STEM - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session from November 2019, opens in Adobe Connect. STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) is a necessary component...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session from November 2019, opens in Adobe Connect. STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) is a necessary component in all classrooms today. As educators, we need to find ways to reach all students and help them to understand the topics within STEM better. In this session, we will share a few no-tech and low-tech STEM activities, for those educators with limited tech options or simply looking for a no-tech or low-tech STEM lesson. Management is key in any classroom, but when working in cooperative groups, it is imperative. During the session, we will reflect on the activity suggestions and discuss possible management concerns. Participants will: 1. Explore no-tech and low-tech STEM activities; 2. Understand the engineering design process; and 3. Plan for the integration of no and low-tech STEM activities in the classroom. This session is appropriate for teachers at all technology levels.

tag(s): professional development (196), STEM (213)

In the Classroom

The archive of this teacher-friendly, hands-on webinar will empower and inspire you to use learning technology in the classroom and for professional productivity. As appropriate, specific classroom examples and ideas have been shared. View the session with a few of your teaching colleagues to find and share new ideas. Find additional information and links to tools at the session resource page. Learn more about OK2Ask and upcoming sessions here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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What is a Solstice? - National Geographic and Michael Greshko

Grades
4 to 12
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This article takes readers through a lesson on the science of summer solstice with video and written explanations. Also, the author provides information on historical structures and...more
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This article takes readers through a lesson on the science of summer solstice with video and written explanations. Also, the author provides information on historical structures and celebrations related to the solstice. Another highlight of this site takes a look at misconceptions about the longest day of the year.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): seasons (37), solar system (125), sun (75)

In the Classroom

Include this site with your other resources when teaching about the sun, earth, and seasons. Create a complete unit using ActivelyLearn, reviewed here, and include this article with the other texts and videos available on the site. If you happen to be in school during the summer solstice, use Skype, reviewed here, to find a classroom in a different country to compare and contrast how the solstice affects different parts of the world. Ask students to demonstrate learning by creating a game using Minecraft Education Edition, reviewed here, to create an immersive environment demonstrating the features of summer solstice.

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ArtsNow - ArtsNow.org

Grades
K to 12
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ArtsNow provides a large variety of resources for teaching and integrating art across the curriculum. Choose from Curriculum Guides, Modules, or Integrated Units to begin. Browse the...more
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ArtsNow provides a large variety of resources for teaching and integrating art across the curriculum. Choose from Curriculum Guides, Modules, or Integrated Units to begin. Browse the Curriculum Guides by grade level or content. Download any guide in PDF format for a complete lesson overview including, correlation to National and Georgia state standards. This site also includes several integrated units for grades K-7. Download any unit for all unit resources including, activities, rubrics, and suggestions for differentiation. Choose modules for grades K-5 that integrate STEAM activities. Modules include a strong focus on integrating the arts with science concepts such as magnets and ecosystems.

tag(s): animals (323), art history (78), civil war (147), geometric shapes (171), maps (297), matter (65), seasons (37), STEM (213), stories and storytelling (34), temperature (35), weather (211)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of these free lesson plans and classroom activities to integrate art into your everyday classroom activities. Consider coordinating lessons with your school's art and music teachers. Expand upon the ideas found on this site to bring other art forms into the lessons. For example, take advantage of poetry resources and interactives found at ReadWriteThink, reviewed here, and have students create diamante, acrostic, and haiku poems relating to your lessons. Enhance student learning further by asking students or groups of students to create webpages sharing their learning activities using a resource like Carrd, reviewed here. This very simple tool allows users to add images and text to create a beautiful website using the provided templates. Be sure to ask students to include a reflective writing piece describing their learning throughout your unit. Take learning to the highest level and ask students to design and create a series of podcasts using Anchor, reviewed here. Ask students to discuss their learning activities, and also hypothesize on different outcomes of experiments when changing elements or activities. For example, if creating a podcast discussing changes in matter, have students share their thoughts on how the room and outdoor temperature affects outcomes. What if they used juice instead of water? Would the change from ice to liquid take the same amount of time?
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Brush Ninja - Ben Gillbanks

Grades
4 to 12
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Create animated gifs using Brush Ninja's paint tools and online editor. Use the paintbrushes to draw and color each frame. The toolbox contains a variety of features, including pencils,...more
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Create animated gifs using Brush Ninja's paint tools and online editor. Use the paintbrushes to draw and color each frame. The toolbox contains a variety of features, including pencils, text, shapes, and more. Use the control panel to adjust and play the animation. The timeline allows you to see the frames making up an animation, then drag and drop any frame to change the order. When finished, export your gif as an image for each frame, animated gif, or as an animated gif adjusted for Twitter.

tag(s): animation (59), drawing (74)

In the Classroom

Use Brush Ninja in a variety of ways. Share this site with students and give them time to explore and experiment. When working with troubled students, use this site to let students share their thoughts and emotions through an animation. This is an excellent site to use with students who love art and enjoy sharing their learning through creative expressions. Take a look at the images created by other users in the gallery as inspiration for how to use animations. Ask students to create animations demonstrating science concepts like erosion, weathering, or chemical reactions. Use this site to have students create animations demonstrating events from stories, share their thought process in math, or animate an event from history. Have students include their animations when creating multimedia projects in an online tool like Sway, reviewed here.

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Journey North - Journey North

Grades
3 to 12
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Journey North is a citizen-science program for collaborating and documenting the migration of animals and insects. Become involved by adding your images and sightings, or follow the...more
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Journey North is a citizen-science program for collaborating and documenting the migration of animals and insects. Become involved by adding your images and sightings, or follow the site to view the observations of others through maps, images, and descriptions. Choose from a diverse selection of animals, including whales, earthworms, and many others to begin. Within each topic find information about the animal and their migration habits along with links to additional resources. Take your journey a step further and choose the live cam link to view webcams and animal videos from around the world. Make sure to check out the educator's section to find vocabulary, reading, and inquiry activities.

tag(s): animal homes (67), animals (323), insects (73), migration (60), scientists (71)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of this site to teach students about animal migration and the activities of scientists. Include a link to the site on classroom computers to follow updates and record sightings. Even if you don't participate by sharing information on the site, consider using the site as a model for observations in your area. Use Microsoft Office or Google Docs to create a spreadsheet to record sightings including dates, images, and the person doing the sighting. As students view different animals, encourage them to research and learn more about them and share their learning by creating infographics using Canva Infographic Maker, reviewed here. Extend classroom technology use by having students include their infographics on webpages created using Carrd, reviewed here. Carrd is a simple yet attractive-looking tool for creating websites for even less tech-savvy users. Redefine classroom technology use and learning and ask students to use Story Maps, reviewed here to design an interactive map including images, text, and other multimedia to tell the story of migration.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Solar System Exploration - NASA

Grades
3 to 12
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Take a journey deep into the solar system with this engaging site from the Planetary Science Communications team at NASA. Choose a destination within the solar system to explore facts,...more
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Take a journey deep into the solar system with this engaging site from the Planetary Science Communications team at NASA. Choose a destination within the solar system to explore facts, information, and images or scroll down the home page to read about the latest news about the solar system. Dig deeper into the site to learn about careers in space, space missions, and much more. Some portions of the site also feature a downloadable app for 3D exploration of planets, moons, asteroids, and more. Stay up to date with the picture of the week and monthly skywatching tips.

tag(s): explorers (69), moon (81), planets (139), solar system (125), sun (75)

In the Classroom

Use this site to offer students the opportunity to explore our solar system through interactives, facts, and informative articles. Introduce the site on your interactive whiteboard then allow students to explore on their own. Because the site is dense with content, you might want to provide students specific areas and content for exploration. As students learn about different pieces of the solar system, ask them to share information using PostIt, reviewed here, a labeling tool; have students use an image and create notes about information learned. For example, find a free image to use of the sun and add notes with interesting facts, including distance from the earth, the temperature on the sun, and more. Use PostIt to create an image for each planet either together as a class, or have students create their own. Use the information learned to create a lively learning game using Baamboozle, reviewed here. Baamboozle is a quick and easy two-team quiz creation game that keeps track of the score as you play. Have older students create their own quiz game for classmates to play based on the material they learned from this site and others. Take student learning a step further and modify classroom technology use by asking them to create books about the solar system using Book Creator (Chrome and app), reviewed here. Book Creator includes features for students to easily create digital books using their own text, videos, and images. Use BookCreator for a variety of assignments in any classroom that is integrating technology as an enhancement, modification, or transformation. Be sure to include your students' books on your class website as part of your digital library for students and parents!

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PictureStem Project - Tamara Moore, Kristina Tank, and Elizabeth Gajdzik

Grades
K to 3
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The PictureStem Project offers STEM teaching units for grades K-2 incorporating the engineering process and correlated to science standards. These three units - one each for grades...more
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The PictureStem Project offers STEM teaching units for grades K-2 incorporating the engineering process and correlated to science standards. These three units - one each for grades K, 1, and 2 include modular features that contain content within different lessons throughout the school day. Each lesson within a unit provides science concepts based upon literary connections using picture books. Select any unit to view and download the entire unit including printables.

tag(s): animal homes (67), animals (323), engineering (132), geometric shapes (171), main idea (8), measurement (177), numbers (191), patterns (89), phonics (68), preK (281), reading comprehension (131), STEM (213)

In the Classroom

Enjoy these free, high-quality STEM units to use in your elementary classroom. As you teach lessons found on this site, enhance learning using a portfolio-creation tool like Seesaw, reviewed here, to share student work and reflections. Upload images of student projects then use Seesaw to add video reflections, students' written responses, and more. Share Seesaw portfolios with parents during parent/teacher conferences to demonstrate student learning. If you are unable to use the complete units in your classroom, be sure to look through the many lessons to "mine" for shorter activities that work in your teaching situation.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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National Geographic 101 - National Geographic

Grades
6 to 12
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Learn about and discover some of the world's most fascinating and timely topics with National Geographic's 101 video series. Each short video is under 5 minutes and features an overview...more
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Learn about and discover some of the world's most fascinating and timely topics with National Geographic's 101 video series. Each short video is under 5 minutes and features an overview of the issue. The diverse range of video subjects includes pollution, human origins, and the flu virus. Click the "more" button next to each video for a transcript and tags for related videos.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): animals (323), chemicals (51), climate (97), climate change (74), dinosaurs (51), diseases (73), drugs and alcohol (26), energy (212), evolution (106), genetics (91), hiv/aids (20), moon (81), planets (139), plants (175), pollution (67), religions (74), romans (37), solar energy (38), solar system (125), space (232), STEM (213), sun (75), weather (211)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of the share feature included with each video to share a link or embed videos on your class website or student computers. These videos provide a wonderful opportunity for students to explore a variety of science topics that aren't always included in the science curriculum. As students find a topic of interest on the site, ask them to research additional information, and then use Canva, reviewed here, to modify their learning and create posters or infographics sharing their findings with their peers. Include student-created posters or infographics as part of an overall presentation using a portfolio-building site like About.me, reviewed here. Use About.me for students to create a portfolio as their future self as a scientist sharing their research that includes posters, written work, cited research, and more.

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Classroom Management Resources - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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Classroom management covers a wide range of tasks or routines: collecting assignments, designing seating charts, promoting positive behaviors, creating cooperative learning groups,...more
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Classroom management covers a wide range of tasks or routines: collecting assignments, designing seating charts, promoting positive behaviors, creating cooperative learning groups, and so much more. If you are looking for some new tools to ensure that your classroom lessons run smoothly and disruptive behaviors are kept to a minimum, check out this collection to maximize your management. Classroom management matters at all grade levels and we have tools for all ages and for all subjects.

tag(s): classroom management (144), Teacher Utilities (89)

In the Classroom

Find management tips and tools to make your class run smoother. Share this collection with your colleagues.

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Your Plan, Your Planet - Google/California Academy of Sciences

Grades
2 to 12
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Your Plan, Your Planet is an interactive that demonstrates how simple changes at home have a positive impact on our environment. The interactive focuses on three components: water,...more
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Your Plan, Your Planet is an interactive that demonstrates how simple changes at home have a positive impact on our environment. The interactive focuses on three components: water, food, and energy. Select any of the three items to begin your exploration of ways to change individual habits at home for the greater good of the planet.

tag(s): energy (212), environment (319), recycling (58), water (137)

In the Classroom

Share this site with your class on a projector or an interactive whiteboard to learn about ways to save water, food, and energy in your school then have students explore on their own. As you and your students learn about ways to positively impact the environment, ask them to create infographics sharing statistics and vital information using a tool like Canva, reviewed here, as an alternative to a written research paper. Have older students create video explainers using My Simpleshow, reviewed here to share with younger students and teach them about environmental awareness. Instead of oral reports sharing student research, consider enhancing student understanding by having them create an ongoing podcast to share with your school community. Include tips for reducing food and energy waste at school, and share success stories from different classes. Buzzsprout, reviewed here is a free tool for uploading and sharing podcasts.

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MSN Kids - MSN Worldwide

Grades
K to 8
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MSN Kids features content and search features geared toward elementary and middle-school aged kids. In addition to news stories around the world of interest to kids, the site also includes...more
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MSN Kids features content and search features geared toward elementary and middle-school aged kids. In addition to news stories around the world of interest to kids, the site also includes crafts and videos that appeal to students. Use the links to different categories including animals, science and tech, and more to narrow down features. One very nice feature for classrooms is that this site does not include any advertising or sponsored content.

tag(s): bookmarks (54), cross cultural understanding (142), search engines (59)

In the Classroom

Set the home page on classroom computers to MSN Kids for students to explore and learn about current events around the world. Have students choose an article and use it as a basis for a research project. Challenge students to create an infographic using Canva, reviewed here, to share information learned from the site. After researching information using MSN Kids, ask students to create an explainer video using Biteable, reviewed here, to provide facts, background information, and discuss any topic.

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Space School Musical - Jet Propulsion Laboratory California Institute of Technology

Grades
3 to 12
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Introduce students to planets, the moon, and more through this "hip-hopera" correlated to science standards. The materials are designed to be used as a whole production, or as individual...more
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Introduce students to planets, the moon, and more through this "hip-hopera" correlated to science standards. The materials are designed to be used as a whole production, or as individual stand-alone parts. Each section includes a video download and transcript. Total runtime of the videos is 30 minutes. If your school blocks YouTube, the videos may not be viewable.

tag(s): moon (81), planets (139), readers theater (14), space (232), STEM (213)

In the Classroom

Appeal to your students' love of music and drama to teach key space concepts with this site. Instead of just watching the videos, enhance learning using EdPuzzle, reviewed here. Use EdPuzzle to upload the video then add questions to help student comprehension or as a starter for further exploration. Have students interested in music and theater create their own production of Space School Musical (or their original space production). Allow students who aren't interested in being featured in the production to create scenery, be authors and add additional information, or help videotape and share the finished project. Redefine learning by having other students create video explainers using a video creation tool like My Simpleshow, reviewed here. Use these explainers as part of your ongoing assessment of student learning in place of a written report.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Science News for Students - Society for Science and the Public

Grades
4 to 8
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Science News for Students publishes daily science articles aimed at readers 9-14 years old. Written by science experts, this site features a variety of topics geared toward preteens....more
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Science News for Students publishes daily science articles aimed at readers 9-14 years old. Written by science experts, this site features a variety of topics geared toward preteens. Each story includes highlighted "power" words including providing definitions for lesser-known vocabulary. At the end of each article, find a readability score using the Flesch-Kincaid algorithm. Browse the site's home page for the most recent posts or use the Topics link to find information sorted into categories. This site also includes a keyword search to use when looking for specific information. Some articles include YouTube videos; if your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable.

tag(s): body systems (60), brain (65), careers (148), earth (226), environment (319), evolution (106), genetics (91), human body (133), space (232), STEM (213)

In the Classroom

Include a link to Science News for Students on classroom computers to include with other non-fiction reading resources for students. Have students browse through the site to find information of interest when choosing science fair or research topics. Alter students' learning by asking them to create an infographic related to a science topic using Canva Infographic Maker, reviewed here. This very easy to use tool includes drag and drop tools for easy creation of infographics using included templates or your own design. Take student research a step further and redefine their learning by having students use ThingLink, reviewed here, to upload an image related to their science research and add annotations. Thinglink offers tools for adding text, audio, video, and more to images. Weaker readers will need a reading buddy for some of the more challenging article. Classes in lower grades will want to read the articles together. A quick check on one article using Juicy Studio's Readability test, reviewed here, provided an approximate grade level of 6.5. Check articles before assigning to elementary students. You might also want to use Word Sift, reviewed here, to quickly identify important words that appear in the text.

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Monarch Lab - University of Minnesota

Grades
K to 12
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This site is an undertaking of the University of Minnesota to develop a citizen science project including volunteers from around the country to share long-term data on monarch butterfly...more
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This site is an undertaking of the University of Minnesota to develop a citizen science project including volunteers from around the country to share long-term data on monarch butterfly populations and their milkweed habitat. Sign up and share your data, or explore the site to learn more about monarch butterflies. The site includes monitoring data from around the US, training information, and ongoing updates and newsletters.

tag(s): animal homes (67), butterflies (13), data (156), habitats (113), insects (73)

In the Classroom

Use the downloadable worksheets on this site to monitor and learn about monarch butterflies in your area. Use Google Sheets and Documents to include images and data together. Compare your class data to those around the country. Take advantage of this project to show students how every piece of data is significant for scientific studies. Ask students to share information through blog entries using Edublog, reviewed here. Edublog includes tools for easily creating interesting blogs including student writing and images.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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The Science of Snowflakes - Marusa BradaA''''?

Grades
4 to 12
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Take a fascinating look at the secret life of a snowflake with this TED-Ed lesson. This lesson includes a video and a series of discussion questions. Take advantage of the ...more
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Take a fascinating look at the secret life of a snowflake with this TED-Ed lesson. This lesson includes a video and a series of discussion questions. Take advantage of the large selection of additional resources offered on the site to explore snowflakes further. Log in to your free account to save and modify the lesson as you desire. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable.

tag(s): seasons (37), snow (21), weather (211)

In the Classroom

This lesson is perfect for saving for a snowy day or use during winter lessons. Create your free TED-Ed account, reviewed here, and save this lesson and others for use in your classroom. Before introducing this lesson to students, ask students to share what they know about snowflakes on an online bulletin board like Lino, reviewed here. At the end of your lessons, revisit your bulletin board to add additional information learned and correct previous misconceptions. View the video together as a class, then allow students to research and find answers to the included discussion questions. Create a Google form for students to respond to discussion questions. Ask them to back up their response by including information and/or images found during their research.

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Babble Dabble Do - Ana Dziengel

Grades
K to 6
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Connect the arts and sciences through hands-on exploration with creative projects shared on Babble Dabble Do. Begin by selecting one of the four categories - art, science, engineering,...more
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Connect the arts and sciences through hands-on exploration with creative projects shared on Babble Dabble Do. Begin by selecting one of the four categories - art, science, engineering, or design for kids. Each topic includes many ideas for projects for preschoolers and up. Project ideas all include step-by-step directions with pictures, many also include videos.
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tag(s): design (89), engineering (132), makerspace (28), STEM (213)

In the Classroom

Be sure to add this to your toolbox of ideas for teaching STEAM topics and for ideas to use in classroom makerspaces. In addition to adding this site to your favorite bookmarks, consider creating a board on Pinterest, reviewed here, of sites with ideas for STEAM projects. Share the board with your peers and collaborate on adding STEAM sites as a group. Extend learning throughout and after project activities as you include student work as part of a portfolio on Seesaw, reviewed here. Seesaw offers tools for all ages of students to create digital portfolios including written or audio reflections on work. Instead of just sharing images of student creations on your Facebook page or school web page, help students enhance their learning by creating digital books using WriteReader, reviewed here, to share online for family and friends. WriteReader is a site specially created for use with younger students to share their writing and images.

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Curious George STEM Collection - PBS Kids

Grades
K to 6
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The Curious George STEM Collection contains a variety of hands-on lesson plans teaching STEM concepts through Curious George videos. Concepts taught include simple machines, measurement,...more
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The Curious George STEM Collection contains a variety of hands-on lesson plans teaching STEM concepts through Curious George videos. Concepts taught include simple machines, measurement, sorting, and more. Each lesson begins by watching a video, then using the concepts presented in the video to participate in a variety of learning activities. In addition to the complete lesson, each activity also includes a variety of additional resources for extending learning. Lessons align to National and Next Generation Science Standards.

tag(s): air (141), architecture (83), careers (148), charts and graphs (204), engineering (132), measurement (177), recycling (58), rockets (18), senses (32), simple machines (33), soil (20), sorting (12), STEM (213), water (137)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of these free lessons and videos to add to your current STEM teaching resources. Ask students to blog about their experiences as a substitution for handwritten journals using a tool like Seesaw, reviewed here. This tool makes blogging easy, even for the youngest students. To enhance learning for students, take pictures of class activities, then have students annotate images using ThingLink, reviewed here. Use ThingLink for students to modify their learning by adding a voice recording of their understanding of science and math concepts learned during lessons.

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Skype - Skype Technologies S.A.

Grades
K to 12
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Every teen and college student knows Skype, the free tool for making calls from computer to computer anywhere in the world. By downloading and installing free software and setting up...more
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Every teen and college student knows Skype, the free tool for making calls from computer to computer anywhere in the world. By downloading and installing free software and setting up a free account, you can talk and/or make a video call to a similarly equipped computer elsewhere in the world for free. Skype uses a lot of "bandwidth" so is not suitable for very slow networks. It may also be slow at high-traffic times on a good network. Some patience and pretesting is required before you can be sure it will work for your needs. Connect to classrooms, experts, authors, virtual special speakers, or interview subjects using Skype.

tag(s): virtual field trips (58), webcams (8)

In the Classroom

Download and install the Skype software. If you are not allowed to install software on school computers, ask to have a single laptop available that is Skype-capable so you can borrow it or else explain to your principal that you are planning a series of Skype visits in your classroom so your techies will install it in your classroom. You will need a computer with built-in or separate microphone and speakers and optional webcam. If you plan to use a webcam, you must know how to start it. A single teacher-controlled Skype account will work in most school settings.

If you prefer written directions go to More >> Get Help, and then slide to Skype Support to get started. Or ask a student to show you (without seeing your password). You will need to explore the tools in Skype to locate where to enter the SKYPE name of the person you wish to call, start the call, and answer calls. Do NOT set your copy of Skype to "remember me" on a school computer! If students are to participate in the Skype call, you may want to have a "hot seat" at the Skyping computer so they can sit at a mike so their questions will pick up better for the person at the other end.

Be sure to set Skype so it does not open every time you start up the computer. Manually start the program when needed and do not leave an obvious Skype icon on the desktop for "clever" students to find. Protect your password -- do not post it on the computer. A teacher-controlled account is best for Skype classroom use to prevent unauthorized calls by students. Your user name will show on the screen for students to see, so be aware of that when you create your account.

Anything you can do by telephone or video call you can do on a projector with your entire class. Connect the Skyping computer to a projector or whiteboard for the entire class to see if you are using video. (The video may be fuzzy, but good enough to follow a person's face.) Use Skype to talk to authors (check out their web sites or this blog for contact information). Have students write questions in advance. Use your contacts, web page "contact us" emails, and parent contacts to find others willing to Skype into your classroom. Interview scientists or government officials, deployed military personnel, or classes far away in a different culture or language. Younger students can compare weather, family life, community events, and more. Learn other ideas for using Skype in your classroom

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Glogster EDU - Glogster

Grades
K to 12
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Glogster EDU is a tool to create online multimedia "posters" that can incorporate all types of elements into a visual space: links, images, text, videos, music, and more. Your students...more
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Glogster EDU is a tool to create online multimedia "posters" that can incorporate all types of elements into a visual space: links, images, text, videos, music, and more. Your students will have multiple ways to express themselves and to learn from each other, making it easy for you to differentiate and engage each student. See examples of glogs right on the home page to envision the possibilities.

The EDU community offered by Glogster is designed to alleviate the problems of inappropriate content and contact with "outsiders" not welcome in your class electronic community. The EDU area provides classes advertising-free glogs and easy teacher monitoring of student work. Students can comment and interact within a "gated community" with education-friendly options for collaboration and learning. Remember those "All About Me" posters you used to make during the first month of school, or science fair stand-up tri-folds, or magic-marker-drawn visual aids for speeches? Translate 20th century "visuals" into the 21st century using Glogster EDU, extending your students' intellectual reach and mastering the media to incorporate new technologies and richer messages. Here is an example glog created by the TeachersFirst Edge team. Note: Check the details of the free vs premium options, since they change periodically. One teacher can create a free account with 30 students.
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tag(s): digital storytelling (147), posters (43)

In the Classroom

Start by creating a glog together as a class to try out the tools (don't forget to name it). Keep it simple or add all the bells and whistles. Preview as you work or return later to complete and publish your Glog. Add ready-made graphics, images from files on your computer or by URL on the web, links (hyperlinked from text or other objects), text boxes or bubbles, backgrounds ("walls"), animated graphics ("vinyl and toys"), recorded audio, embedded video from SchoolTube or TeacherTube, uploaded media file, and much more. You can also "grab" video or audio from your computer's webcam and mike. [Our editors had some trouble "grabbing" video from a Mac using Firefox, so TEST in advance. A very responsive Glogster EDU tech crew tells us they are working to correct that glitch.]

Of course you will want to model and teach appropriate documentation of any sources of images and media you use and to use copyrighted works legally. If you limit access to your class only by keeping a glog "private," you can use copyrighted materials under Fair Use. YOU must limit the distribution of the URL, however.

When you are done working, decide whether the glog is "unfinished" or "finished" (and published), and decide whether it will be public or not. Share finished work with "friends" (classmates) in the Glogster EDU area or via URL and other social networking tools. You can access ALL your glogs and your students' glogs from your teacher dashboard (if you have one of the premium accounts,) including the glog URLs. What can you do with your free teacher account? You can embed a glog in your class wiki or blog, as a landing page for all of your important links. This same glog can be embedded anywhere you need. Your wiki, blog, school website, and more. The advantage? Change your glog whenever you want and it changes all the other places. Watch the tutorials on embedding so you can learn how to adjust the size of the embed window and which codes work best for wikispaces.

Possible uses: (in addition to those shown in the sample glog here) Create "visual essays;" digital biodiversity logs (with digital pictures students take); online literary magazines; personal reflections in images and text; research project presentations; comparisons of online content, such as political candidates' sites or content sites used in research (compared for bias); documenting science experiments or illustrating concepts, such as the water cycle; "Visual" lab reports; Digital scrapbooks using images from the public domain and video and audio clips from a time in history -- such as the Roaring Twenties; Local history features; visual interpretations of major concepts, such as a "visual" U.S. Constitution. Build a library of sample Glogs by you or by former students, then ask students to create their own as a new way to assess understanding: you could even provide links to images and raw materials they may use (especially if you have students who need extra scaffolding), and they can work with them to sequence, caption, and write about the pieces. After a first project where you possibly suggest "building blocks," the sky is the limit on what they can do. Even the very young can make suggestions as you "create" a whole-class glog together using an interactive whiteboard. Consider making a new project for each unit you teach so students can "recap" by visiting the glog long after the unit ends. Save student glogs from year to year as examples, possibly even awarding prizes for "best" examples. Have upper elementary or middle school students create "glogs for understanding" for "little buddies" two or three grades lower.

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Automotivator - Zach Beane

Grades
K to 12
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Create your own motivational poster easily and effortlessly. Choose a random picture, one from the Internet, or one chosen from your computer. Choose colors to border the picture and...more
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Create your own motivational poster easily and effortlessly. Choose a random picture, one from the Internet, or one chosen from your computer. Choose colors to border the picture and the type of text to be used. Enter your text and preview the result. Once complete, save to Flickr, your computer, or print using a separate site. Remember you can use a saved image in PowerPoint shows and on a class wiki, as well.
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tag(s): firstday (23), images (273), photography (145), posters (43)

In the Classroom

You need to know how to browse and upload a file from your computer or find the URL of an image already on the web (one you can legally use, of course!).

Make sure students are aware of copyright laws. Use this site to encourage proper use of photographs that students have the authorization to use. Model including appropriate photo credits on the posters.

Younger students can use this tool together as a whole-class activity or simply enjoy the posters their teacher creates. Have students create a picture about what has been studied with a caption of what has been learned. For example, create posters about predators and prey or classifications of animals. Students can create a poster of a study skill or learning activity that helps them learn. Create a caption that explains how the student learns the best. Every subject area can use this resource to create interesting presentation posters for display or as springboards to talk about what was learned. For example, in Biology, students could create a poster about a cell part with a clever caption about the importance of the job. In Literature or History, students can create posters about the perspectives of others in the story or at that time of history. Rather than a traditional research project. Have cooperative learning groups use this site to show their knowledge in any subject area. Ask students to apply concepts such as constitutional rights by illustrating them in poster images with captions. Teachers can create bulletin board images, as well. Have a classroom motivation poster competition to start off the school year! Share the winners on your class wiki or in a PowerPoint presentation at back to school night/open house. As special occasions approach, have students bring in or take a digital picture they can make into a poster as a family gift with their own inspirational saying.

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