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Thinking With Type - Ellen Lupton

Grades
6 to 12
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Thinking with Type offers a classroom companion to the book Thinking with Type: A Critical Guide for Designers, Writers, Editors, and Students. The book (and site) contain...more
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Thinking with Type offers a classroom companion to the book Thinking with Type: A Critical Guide for Designers, Writers, Editors, and Students. The book (and site) contain more information about type than you ever knew existed!. Resources include lectures, project ideas, handouts, and more to use for teaching not just with the book but also as a resource for anyone that uses type. Choose the letter category to view information such as size, scale, type families, and font formats. Explore line spacing, alignment, and tracking within the text portion of the site. Discover different grids such as single and multi-column grids. Be sure to check out the section for teachers loaded with information, exercises, projects, and demos.

tag(s): descriptive writing (34), graphic design (46)

In the Classroom

This site is an excellent resource for web design and graphic design classes. Share portions of this site on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) for lessons in type basics, typeface history, and more. Use some of the project ideas (see Extras: Tools for Teachers) to have students create poetry posters for poetry month using artistic type and their own words. Have students explore the site and create a simple infographic sharing their findings using Easel.ly, reviewed here or Venngage reviewed here.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Creativity Games - Ryan Chadwick

Grades
5 to 12
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Creativity Games offers challenges, games, and puzzles to encourage creative thinking. Find new activities each week such as random word identification, code breakers, or creative challenges....more
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Creativity Games offers challenges, games, and puzzles to encourage creative thinking. Find new activities each week such as random word identification, code breakers, or creative challenges. Choose the Random Word Generator link to generate a set of random words to use in creative writing, or choose a preset creativity game from the drop-down box provided. Read several great creative writing tips in the creative writing prompts section of the site. This site also features blog entries on a variety of topics related to creativity and education.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): creative writing (115), creativity (90), logic (175), poetry (178), puzzles (152), substitutes (15), writing prompts (63)

In the Classroom

Use any of the challenges on this site as a brain warm-up as students trickle into class or before the homeroom bell rings. Display the Random Word Generator on your interactive word (or projector). Choose a link to provide a set of random words to use in poetry or creative writing assignments. Use logic games to warm up brains in math class. Assign weekly games for students to complete in free time or for use with gifted students. Read through the creative writing tips together as a class then add you own ideas. Post your ideas in your classroom using an online poster creator, such as Padlet, reviewed here. Teacher-librarians can post a weekly brain challenge to inspire students who visit the media center. Any teacher will want to include this link on your class web page for students to access from home or during study periods. Substitutes will want to mak this one in favorites to always have something ready to go when the lesson plans go missing!

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Kaizena - Kaizena

Grades
1 to 12
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Do you wish you had enough time in your schedule for one-on-one personalized writing conferences with your students or writers you know? Kaizena (previously 121Writing) can make that...more
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Do you wish you had enough time in your schedule for one-on-one personalized writing conferences with your students or writers you know? Kaizena (previously 121Writing) can make that dream a reality. Kaizena allows you to give feedback on writing via an audio recording. Writers often have difficulty reading the margin notes from teachers or other readers, or they need more explanation. An audio recording of the feedback provides a personalized experience to enhance the writing process. Kaizena works best by synching with your Google Drive account. There is an option at the bottom of the page to sign up by sending in your name and email address. However, this can take a while, so plan ahead! Sign in with your Google account to watch a helpful video and learn how to connect to your Google Drive account or school Google Apps account.

Start by highlighting a text selection, hit record, and provide your feedback. Writers will be able to listen to your feedback and revise or edit their writing as though you were face to face. Tag your highlighted text with keywords that can be tracked in a mastery-based rubric. You could tag conventional errors, mistakes, or selections that are amazing. Verbal feedback can be played on an iPad so students can listen in the best learning environment to meet their needs. Writers will progress as you enhance the writing process with explicit audio feedback. Kaizena can enhance feedback for written work for any school subject or even outside of school. With the free Kaizena you can create up to 5 lessons.

tag(s): communication (99), editing (78), process writing (38), writing (280)

In the Classroom

Editing and revising are better with audio feedback. Provide explicit details to improve student performance. Students can record peer edits and share audio recordings with classmates. Classroom time is more efficient and effective when students can listen to your feedback before meeting face to face. Have students highlight passages of text and provide their reflections on the selection. World language classes can speak text or respond to questions in their new language. Learning support students will better understand audio feedback on their writing than detailed comments written in "teacher-ese." This is a great tool for students to highlight poetry and record their thoughts and feelings on the text. Students can highlight and record their thought process as they solve math word problems. Highlight and record opinions on current event articles. Highlight an entire passage of text to model reading fluency. Students can listen and read along with the recording to help with phrasing and expression. Highlight text and model fluency for ESL/ELL students. Highlight assessment questions or text for lower-level readers to provide a level playing field in the classroom. Challenge students to provide audio feedback to their peers on passages where they would like to know more, questions they have as readers, and positive feedback on passages they enjoy.

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Telescopic Text - Joe Davis

Grades
2 to 12
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Looking to write with more detail and description? Telescopic Text is a humorous way to demonstrate the art of elaboration. Type a short simple sentence (or line of poetry). Click ...more
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Looking to write with more detail and description? Telescopic Text is a humorous way to demonstrate the art of elaboration. Type a short simple sentence (or line of poetry). Click on a word or phrase and add a little bit more detail. Through this site, you will learn how to identify words or phrases to expand on, creating passages that are more meaningful. Once the sentence (or more likely a paragraph) is complete, replay the writing process. The text can be either "unfolded" (opened up) or "folded" (narrowed down). It is just as easy to reverse the writing process. Start with a long piece of text, and practice how to eliminate words or phrases. This site presents the writing process as a lighthearted play of words. Telescopic Text is an opportunity to generate writing ideas. There is a published library with a few examples posted that are for teacher use. Anyone can write his or her own text without having to register. Register to be able to save, manage, and publish your writing! Be sure to check out the "How to Use" portion of the site for a complete explanation.

tag(s): descriptive writing (34), paragraph writing (13), parts of speech (41), sentences (24)

In the Classroom

Use this site to support a mini-lesson about word choice, meaning, elaboration, or the importance of using detail and description. It would also be a way to build imagery into a poetry writing lesson. Project this site onto an interactive whiteboard or projector for whole class or small group exploration. Use the examples already posted or create your own to demonstrate how the tool works. After the mini-lesson, have students work in small groups to create a telescopic text (or poem) of their own. This website lends itself to a powerful mini-lesson or to craft lessons that will really "stick".
 

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Love Your Dog - Janet and Rick Wall

Grades
K to 12
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Enter the world of canine love. Find information on dogs, training, choosing a name, breed information, and more about raising a puppy/dog. Much of the information includes short video...more
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Enter the world of canine love. Find information on dogs, training, choosing a name, breed information, and more about raising a puppy/dog. Much of the information includes short video clips. You will also find poetry, book lists, and lesson plans to accompany books about dogs. Some of the books included: Because of Winn Dixie, Call of the Wild, Old Yellar, The Incredible Journey, Where the Red Fern Grows, Shiloh, Love that Dog, Sounder, and White Fang . Some of the videos require the QuickTime plug-in.
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tag(s): animals (259)

In the Classroom

Use as a comprehensive resource site for career day, with detailed information on dog care and careers. Use the videos on your projector or interactive whiteboard as a way to illustrate a "how to" report. Capture the hearts of your reluctant readers with dog stories and engaging lesson plans. Write poetry and join the dog lovers' community. Use as resource information for science projects. Explore the role of therapy dogs in your career exploration. Use as an example for detailed reports on animals for your class. Have students make their own multimedia presentation using one of the many TeachersFirst Edge tools reviewed here. Some tool suggestions are (click on the tool name to access the review): Adobe Spark in K-12, Animatron, Renderforest, and Beautiful.AI.

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TV411 - Writing - Education Development Center, Inc.

Grades
8 to 12
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Find entertaining videos, web lessons, and printable downloads to support learning about writing. This site was originally intended for adults working toward a GED or equivalent, but...more
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Find entertaining videos, web lessons, and printable downloads to support learning about writing. This site was originally intended for adults working toward a GED or equivalent, but has much to offer all secondary students. There are activities for creative and personal writing, writing for work, and the GED. Each video includes a short description of contents; then just click to view the video. Topics include poetry, revisions, the writing process, setting tone, sentence fragments, and many others. Most videos are approximately 3 minutes long and include links to related web lessons and print downloads.

tag(s): creative writing (115), descriptive writing (34), grammar (137), grammar review (29), letter writing (15), poetry (178), writing (280)

In the Classroom

View videos on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Use this site as part of any writing unit or on an as-needed basis to address classroom deficiencies in particular areas. Have students complete the web lessons on their own during computer center time. Create links to particular videos on your class website or blog for students to view at home. Check out the Teachers portion of the site to find activities for specific skills along with ideas for using the videos in the classroom. Challenge students to create a talking avatar using a photo or other image (legally permitted to be reproduced). The avatars can be used to provide suggestions on improving specific writing skills such as run-on sentences, proper use of commas, etc. Use a site such as Phrase.it, reviewed here. Share the "blabs" as peer help on your class wiki.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Thirty Something and Fabulous: Using Marzano Question Stems in a High School Classroom - Stacy

Grades
6 to 12
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Stacy at "Thirty Something and Fabulous" has taken Marzano's rework of Bloom's Taxonomy and created questions that "address all the literary elements as well as purpose and style" for...more
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Stacy at "Thirty Something and Fabulous" has taken Marzano's rework of Bloom's Taxonomy and created questions that "address all the literary elements as well as purpose and style" for all levels and categories on the taxonomy. Use these questions with any type of reading. They are downloadable (with credit) from her blog. With Common Core and its emphasis on critical thinking and reading nonfiction, these questions are helpful. This review is for the May 17, 2012 blog entry only. TeachersFirst feels this blog post was valuable for teaching. The remainder of the blog is off topic and not a part of this review.
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tag(s): blooms taxonomy (5), critical thinking (101), independent reading (105), literature (218), reading strategies (54), thinking skills (12)

In the Classroom

If you like to compare fiction or poetry with nonfiction, you can choose a few of these questions for students to answer for both pieces. Then ask students to compare which answers are similar and different for both pieces, and why that happens. If you would like to start pairing fiction with nonfiction you can start by using a site such as Earth Care reviewed here. You will find a link for Focus on Books that has lessons for The Lorax, Diary of a Worm, and several others.

If your students write in reading journals, you may want to assign a few of these questions as prompts for reflection. Challenge your students to think of additional writing prompts following this same pattern.

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ReadWorks - ReadWorks.org

Grades
K to 12
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ReadWorks provides a free, research-based, and Common Core-aligned reading comprehension curriculum. Search through hundreds of lesson plans organized by grade level, topic, or titles....more
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ReadWorks provides a free, research-based, and Common Core-aligned reading comprehension curriculum. Search through hundreds of lesson plans organized by grade level, topic, or titles. Register to download materials and save lessons to your folder. (A valid email and password is required). Be sure to start with the Teacher Guide to see all the many features ReadWorks offers about using and teaching the provided lessons and differentiation. For a quick start, click Find Content then select options from the right menu: Text Options - Reading Passages, Aritcle a Day, and Paired Text, Curriculum Support, Grade, Topic, Text Types - Nonfiction, Fiction, or Poetry, and Lexile. There are thousands of reading passages along with question sets to support learning activities for grades K-12. Each selection contains the text with audio, a vocabulary link, and a questions set. In the left margin, you will find related resources such as standards and related materials.

Teachers can create classes to assign reading and track assessments (which are automatically graded). After signing up with email, click on Admin from the top menu and create a class. Students join the class by using a code and their Google account. No Google account? No problem. Create a roster and provide the class code to students. Easily create assignments for the whole class, or individuals as a way to differentiate. This is a perfect tool to use for remote (or distance) teaching and learning!

tag(s): characterization (10), context clues (5), figurative language (14), guided reading (37), independent reading (105), main idea (8), parts of speech (41), plot (6), point of view (7), reading comprehension (121), reading strategies (54), sequencing (16), Teacher Utilities (111), themes (10), vocabulary (233)

In the Classroom

Show students how to sign up and log in to ReadWorks using a projector or interactive whiteboard. Complete a sample assignment together. Use ReadWorks in blended learning or flipped classrooms leaving class time for asking questions and clarifying. Post the link on your website and consider assigning the Article-A-Day for at home reading. Rotate the subjects weekly and discuss the topic the next day in class. Consider using a back channel tool such as GoSoapBox, reviewed here, for the discussion, so even your quiet and shy students feel comfortable participating, and you can get analytics after the discussion. Teachers of all subjects, but especially science and social studies, can find topics for students to read for their subject. Then challenge students to research the topic further. Redefine learning by having students submit their findings to a special class magazine using Underline, reviewed here, created for the topic. Differentiation can be accomplished easily by assigning to individual students, or you can create multiple classes, which would actually be small groups, who read at the same level or have the same topic interest.

Once the students are familiar with the site use Symbaloo Learning Paths, reviewed here, to assign reading to groups at the same reading level. Older students, once they know their reading level, can their select reading and create their own Symbaloo Learning Paths. Check these to make sure students include all types of reading, and that they are challenging themselves. After several selections, ask older students to choose the topic they were most interested in, find resources to learn more about the topic, then extend their learning by presenting their findings using a multimedia tool such as (click on the tool name to access the review): Canva Infographic Maker, Lucidpress, Powtoon, or Biteable.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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The Poem Farm - Amy Ludwig VanDerwater

Grades
K to 8
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The Poem Farm is a wonderful resource for poems of all kinds by poet Amy Ludwig VanDerwater. Though there is a "Goodbye For Now" note, everything still works. Browse ...more
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The Poem Farm is a wonderful resource for poems of all kinds by poet Amy Ludwig VanDerwater. Though there is a "Goodbye For Now" note, everything still works. Browse the Poetry Peeks section to peek into poetry creations in classrooms everywhere. Find poems sorted by topic. Beware, there is an extensive list of topics! Looking for poems using different techniques? Search through the site for mask poems, riddle poems, personification, and much more. Another interesting portion of the website is the dictionary hike. View and listen to a poem for each letter of the alphabet. One unique feature of the website is that the author includes additional information with each poem such as teaching techniques, thought process during the poem's creation, and other ideas for creating similar poetry. There are also some lesson plans to explore.

tag(s): poetry (178), rhymes (21), riddles (15)

In the Classroom

Use this site on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) as inspiration for lessons in poetry writing. Share it on your teacher web page for enrichment. Have students create their own poems using this site as inspiration then augment classroom technology use by having them create podcasts of a poetry reading. Use a site such as podOmatic, reviewed here.

Comments

It's impossible to have writer's block after visiting this blog--there are always so many inspiring writing prompts and ideas to try here. (And the blog has a very comfortable, inviting, homey feeling--feels like visiting a friend for tea.) janet, , Grades: 0 - 12

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TagCrowd: Make Your Own Tag Cloud From Any Text - Daniel Steinbock

Grades
K to 12
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TagCrowd is a web application to visualize word frequencies in any text through creation of a word cloud, text cloud, or tag cloud. Simply type or paste in any text, ...more
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TagCrowd is a web application to visualize word frequencies in any text through creation of a word cloud, text cloud, or tag cloud. Simply type or paste in any text, import from any website, or upload a file to begin the word cloud. Choose from options such as language to use, limit number of words, exclude words based on frequency, or exclude unwanted words. Save as a PDF, print, or embed the finished image using links included with the finished product. The most frequently used words appear larger and in a bold font.

tag(s): speech (70), vocabulary (233), word clouds (12)

In the Classroom

This is a great visual tool to use. Take a poll and have your students type their answers into the word cloud builder. Then display on an interactive whiteboard or projector and see which answer was the most popular. Use this site as a way to help students see and memorize text, especially visual learners. Use it also when writing poetry or to "see" themes of repeated words and images. Have students paste in their own writing to spot repeated (and monotonous) language when teaching lessons on word choice. Use this site to surprise students with words that appear often in their writing. Have students work in groups to create word posters of vocabulary words with related meanings, such as different ways to say "walk" or "said" and decorate your classroom with these visual reminders of the richness of language. More ideas for primary grades: Dolch words, class names, numbers to 20, words with the same beginning letters, collection of ALL the words that hang in the classroom (so students can walk around and find/touch them on a laminated Word cloud card in their hands), or any collection of similar words.

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Dr. Seuss Lesson Plans and Other Teaching Resources - Carla Beard- webenglishteacher

Grades
K to 8
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Find lesson plans, ideas, activities, materials, and resources for using the whacky, whimsical, words of Seuss in this collection of links to many places on the web. The mere ...more
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Find lesson plans, ideas, activities, materials, and resources for using the whacky, whimsical, words of Seuss in this collection of links to many places on the web. The mere mention of the name Dr. Seuss has become synonymous with kindergarten nursery rhymes, but even he would be pleased and amazed to see how useful and diversified his books are for not only teaching reading skills, but also for use in science to help students understand contemporary concepts like going green, or in social studies classes to teach World War II political cartoons, or in elementary math classes to learn basic operations. Click on the well-known book titles for creative ways to discuss, analyze, compare, contrast, sequence, write, resolve conflicts, recycle, and examine important concepts. Of course, there is also plenty of phonics, word play, and building comprehension activities for the language arts teachers who have always been loyal fans. Note: some of the links are no longer active, but the collection still has enough working to make it worthwhile.

tag(s): dr seuss (8), poetry (178)

In the Classroom

If there was anything that Dr. Seuss wanted us to learn in his later years that you won't find in Oh, the Places You'll Go, you'll not only discover just about everything else here, you will also find out how to do it. Compare the works of Seuss and Silverstein by having students work in groups to prepare critical thinking questions about issues of friendship or making wise choices, exploring the relationship between sound and spelling using onomatopoeia in a standards-based lesson from Mr. Brown Can MOO! Can You?, reading Trees for Many Reasons to examine the importance of conserving natural resources, or introducing One Fish, Two Fish as a way to demonstrate Venn Diagrams with Teachersfirst Venn Diagram tool (reviewed here), you'll add humor that will liven up instruction. Permission is granted to link to any educational site, so feel free to post your favorite Seuss games and activities on your class page.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Poetry Read-Alouds - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 6
1 Favorites 0  Comments
 
This read-aloud collection is part of TeachersFirst's Help I lost my library/media specialist series, written by an experienced elementary library/media specialist. Although...more
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This read-aloud collection is part of TeachersFirst's Help I lost my library/media specialist series, written by an experienced elementary library/media specialist. Although nothing can replace the specialized knowledge of a teacher-librarian, this collection of poetry books to read aloud and related activities and lessons will inspire young poets -- even reluctant ones. Invite them to read and write poetry on their own. Find both printable and online resources to extend the poetry reading and writing. Try this terrific read-aloud collection during April, National Poetry Month. If your library does not have the books you want from this list, try using the ISBN numbers to borrow them on interlibrary loan from a public library nearby.

tag(s): book lists (121), poetry (178)

In the Classroom

Use the before, during, and after reading activities in this read-aloud collection as the core of a poetry unit or simply to honor National Poetry Month. Mark it in your Favorites so you can use it from year to year. Share some of the activity ideas and links with parents to use at home or with other teachers to make poetry a schoolwide literacy celebration.

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Fiction Teachers - Meadowbrook Press

Grades
2 to 8
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Jump into fiction and poetry with fictionteachers.com. Find information about teaching reading, poetry, readers theater, and inviting such authors to visit your classroom. Write a Girls...more
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Jump into fiction and poetry with fictionteachers.com. Find information about teaching reading, poetry, readers theater, and inviting such authors to visit your classroom. Write a Girls to the Rescue, a mini mystery, or a new fangled fairy tale. Lesson plans have creative ideas to inspire students, teachers, and parents.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): poetry (178), readers theater (10)

In the Classroom

Jazz up your language arts class with fun, laughter and great readers theater scripts. Find links for other websites for more resources. Discover book resources to make your language arts workshop become the favorite part of your students' day. Use on an interactive whiteboard (or projector), at centers, for parent resource, or additional advice for tutors.

After students have experienced two or three of the reader's theater scripts from this site, have them create their own script for a favorite story. Use the script writing tips found on Aaron Shepard's Reader's Theater Page reviewed here.

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Tammy Worcester's Tech Tip of the Week - Tammy Worcester

Grades
K to 12
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Find a wealth of ideas and tips for using technology in your classroom. Tammy Worcester, an instructional technology specialist for ESSDACK and ISTE presenter, compiles her tips of...more
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Find a wealth of ideas and tips for using technology in your classroom. Tammy Worcester, an instructional technology specialist for ESSDACK and ISTE presenter, compiles her tips of the week here. Other portions of the site include her book sales and paid training and consultation services. See a list of over 100 technology of the week tips, such as creating lesson plans as a Google spreadsheet, sharing lesson plans using Google, as well as publishing them. Follow simple step by step instructions with screen shots embedded for even the most wary technology user. You will also find lists of internet resources given by category. Find 18 ideas and activities explained in simple formats. Some activities include: All about me scavenger hunt, idiom slide show, multiplication charts, Tall Tales, and poetry. This site is ever-growing, so check back often.
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tag(s): folktales (34), idioms (34), number sense (76), operations (92), tutorials (42)

In the Classroom

Trying to think of new ways to use technology with your students (in all grades?). Want to learn just one small tip each week? The weekly tips are a great ice-breaker to using technology and new teaching ideas in your classroom. Try that one tip that is suggested and explore more as you feel comfortable.

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The Explorers' Graveyard - TeachersFirst

Grades
3 to 6
17 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Combine writing, an explorers' study, and fall celebrations using this activity which asks students to compose an epitaph for an explorer of their choice. Writing and art opportunities...more
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Combine writing, an explorers' study, and fall celebrations using this activity which asks students to compose an epitaph for an explorer of their choice. Writing and art opportunities abound, and the end product makes a great display for parent-teacher conferences.

tag(s): explorers (59), poetry (178)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of this free and interactive lesson plan! Just be sure to save it as a favorite to allow for easy retrieval later on!

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Using Creative Dramatics With the Teaching of Poetry - Tracy 4/5 teacher

Grades
3 to 5
2 Favorites 0  Comments
 
This is a teacher-created lesson trying to get upper elementary students interested in poetry by involving them in groups. It is simple and easily adapted to different grade levels....more
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This is a teacher-created lesson trying to get upper elementary students interested in poetry by involving them in groups. It is simple and easily adapted to different grade levels.

tag(s): poetry (178)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of this free lesson plan during a language arts unit on poetry. For a twist on the skit idea, you could also have students complete the almost the same task by creating online posters on paper or do it together as a class using a tool such as Web Poster Wizard (reviewed here) or PicLits (reviewed here).

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Word Clouds for Kids - ABCya.com

Grades
K to 7
8 Favorites 0  Comments
 
This word cloud generator is made specifically for children. This site takes any text and creates a "word cloud" (graphical display) of the words in a passage of text. The ...more
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This word cloud generator is made specifically for children. This site takes any text and creates a "word cloud" (graphical display) of the words in a passage of text. The most frequent words appear larger. Paste in any passage or grouping of text to create a word cloud of the text. Students can choose their own colors, type of display, font, and the final cloud can be printed or saved.

tag(s): speech (70), vocabulary (233), word choice (15), word clouds (12)

In the Classroom

This is a great visual tool to use. Take a poll and have your students type their answers into the word cloud builder. Then display on an interactive whiteboard or projector and see which answer was the most popular. Use this site as a way to help students see and memorize text, especially visual learners. Use it also when writing poetry or to "see" themes of repeated words and images. Have students paste in their own writing to spot repeated (and monotonous) language when teaching lessons on word choice. Students will be surprised to see what words appear to be dominant. Have students work in groups to create word posters of vocabulary words with related meanings, such as different ways to say "walk" or "said" and decorate your classroom with these visual reminders of the richness of language.
 

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Soar into Spring with Kites - Education World

Grades
3 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
 
This web page consists of an adaptable lesson plan and information that is chock full of creative, interactive, practical, ready to use activities based upon the discovery and usefulness...more
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This web page consists of an adaptable lesson plan and information that is chock full of creative, interactive, practical, ready to use activities based upon the discovery and usefulness of the kite. There are interdisciplinary projects including art/history, science, geography, language arts, and math that are fun for students of all age ages. Spring, or any season, is the perfect time to introduce your students to the fascinating world of kites. At the time of this review, two of the links were no longer active. However there are many useful links that make this site a worthwhile tool!

tag(s): crafts (42), seasons (31)

In the Classroom

Check out this educational page for many ideas, links, and ready to do projects. This all-encompassing lesson plan challenges students to participate in enthusiastic learning activities about why kites have often appeared in poetry, legends, and folk tales, and have led to important scientific discoveries. Invite students to try one of the many ideas to create and decorate a kite that represents flags from various countries. Ask them to label the kite with that country's word for kite, using the link provided for the Kite Translation Table. Allow your students to be adventurous with technology by providing them with the opportunity to create online posters using Animoto for Education reviewed here.

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WordArt - WordArt.com

Grades
4 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
 
This site takes any quotation or poem and creates a "word cloud" (graphical display) of the words in a passage of text. Paste in any passage or the URL for ...more
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This site takes any quotation or poem and creates a "word cloud" (graphical display) of the words in a passage of text. Paste in any passage or the URL for any blog entry or web page (including newspapers online) to create a word cloud of the text. This resource is currently free while in beta and intends to keep it free for NON PROFIT only. Enhance basic word clouds by using this site to create clouds in various shapes, use mouse rollover options, use font effects, and more. Elevate your word clouds into an art form. Once registered, change your password by clicking on the profile tab and entering your changes. Before creating a word cloud, agree to their terms that includes only using appropriate content. Copy and paste series of words or use the URL of a page where the words can be found. Choose a shape such as a heart, cloud, or geometric patterns. Choose a font as well as other options, and then click "Build the Cloud." Preview your cloud before saving.

tag(s): images (253), vocabulary (233), word choice (15), word clouds (12)

In the Classroom

You must be able to copy and paste text or provide a url to a page of text as well as determine parameters of more advanced word clouds. Alternately, these word clouds can be kept very simple. After creating the word cloud, be sure to save the image (or use a screen capture) to share with others. Another idea, use the url of the cloud or embed into a place to share such as blog, wiki, or site.

This is a terrific visual tool to share on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Help students develop creative fluency by creating their own WordArt and ideas from scratch. Paste in a passage or URL for a political speech to visualize the politician's "message." Analyze advertising propaganda by visualizing the language used in TV or print ads. Create WordArt of historical texts of inauguration speeches as time capsules of the issues of the day. Use this site as a way to help students see and memorize text, especially visual learners. Use it also when writing poetry or reading passages of great literature to "see" themes and motifs of repeated words and images. Have students paste in their own writing to spot repeated (and monotonous) language when teaching lessons on word choice. Students will be surprised to see what words appear to be dominant. ESL and ELL students will eagerly use this site since word order will no longer be a problem for them. Have students work in groups to create word posters of vocabulary words with related meanings, such as different ways to say "walk" or "said" and decorate your classroom with these visual reminders of the richness of language. Collect thoughts about the class subject at the beginning of the year and then again at the end of the year to determine changes in thoughts about the subject matter.

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Tagxedo - Hardy Leung

Grades
K to 12
15 Favorites 1  Comments
 
Want a word Cloud with Style? Create one here! A word cloud is an image of words that show the most frequent word in a larger font than the others. ...more
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Want a word Cloud with Style? Create one here! A word cloud is an image of words that show the most frequent word in a larger font than the others. Create a visual representation of a passage to pull out and identify important words or show the text in an interactive, visually appealing way. The resulting cloud pops out the words as you roll over them, so viewers can "see" each word separately. Explore the gallery for many inspiring examples, including some that use the customizable image shapes uploaded from your own computer (premium feature).
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): firstday (17), vocabulary (233), word choice (15), word clouds (12)

In the Classroom

NO membership required to create a cloud, though saving may require a (free) membership in the future, according to developer Hardy Leung. Click "Create" and then "Words." Paste URL to "cloud" words from a web page or copy/paste (or type) a passage of words into the given field. (Repeat words to make them larger). Experiment with various settings and "themes" to create the different colors and shapes of the word cloud. Change the theme, shape, direction, layout, and other parameters easily. Click SAVE to easily download a static image of various sizes or take a screenshot using shortcut keys. Saved images do not have the cool "pop-out" feature (rats!), though the developer tells TeachersFirst that users will be able to download animated versions in the future. You can also save and obtain the direct URL to your animated cloud. Be sure to bookmark it or copy/paste the URL for safe keeping in a document, wiki, etc. During beta, the tool allows you to save and copy embed code, but this feature will cost money later.

In the classroom: This is a terrific visual tool to share on an interactive whiteboard or projector. In primary grades. Enter a group of related words into the text box, such as sight words, words with the same spelling cluster, or vocabulary terms. Then have students roll over the words to read them aloud as they pop out (only works in the ONLINE version of the clouds). Paste in a passage or URL for a political speech to visualize the politician's "message." Analyze advertising propaganda by visualizing the language used in TV or print ads. Create word clouds of historical texts of inauguration speeches as time capsules of the issues of the day. Use this site as a way to help students see and memorize terms and important vocabulary, especially visual learners. Use it also when writing poetry or reading passages of great literature to "see" themes and motifs of repeated words and images. Have students paste in their own writing to spot repeated (and monotonous) language when teaching lessons on word choice. Students will be surprised to see what words appear to be dominant. ESL and ELL students will eagerly use this site since word order will no longer be a problem for them. Have students work in groups to create word posters of vocabulary words with related meanings, such as different ways to say "walk" or "said" and decorate your classroom with these visual reminders of the richness of language. Use themes and shapes that coordinate with the word cloud (for example, use a bird shape when creating a cloud about flight or a heart when interpreting a love poem. Consider using a word cloud as a first week of school activity where students discuss summer vacation or what they did over the summer. As a first day activity, students could also make a cloud with words about themselves, then have classmates guess which cloud matches which person.

For a free gift for special occasions, make word clouds about mom for Mother's Day or Thanksgiving "I am thankful" visual poems. Share them by emailing the URL or in printed form.

Comments

Very versatile, creates word clouds in specific shapes. Adds another dimension. Frances, CT, Grades: 6 - 8

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