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Open Explorer - National Geographic

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6 to 12
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Open Explorer is a digital field journal sharing community stories of global exploration, science, and storytelling. The site offers a variety of ways to explore content. Choose from...more
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Open Explorer is a digital field journal sharing community stories of global exploration, science, and storytelling. The site offers a variety of ways to explore content. Choose from map locations or popular and recent explorations. Additional filters allow you to narrow choices to selected types of investigations including air, land, sea, urban, or backyard. Each research project includes a map and is set on a timeline for viewers to follow the progress of the journey. Although registration is not necessary to use the site, it allows you to monitor the ongoing activities of chosen explorations. The videos reside on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, they may not be viewable.

tag(s): animals (319), descriptive writing (42), habitats (108), journals (22), scientific method (67), scientists (69), writing (364)

In the Classroom

This site isn't just for science teachers! Use these journals for non-fiction reading in language arts classrooms or as examples of journal writing. Explore features around the globe in social studies class as part of your geography lessons. In science class, use this site as part of your lessons on animals, habitats, or scientific inquiry. Use this site as a model for science research projects. Complete the entire project digitally beginning with an online notetaking tool such as ReadWriteThink's Notetaker, reviewed here. Notetaker allows students to organize and plan research projects with their different outline formats. During the revision portion of the project, use PeerGrade, reviewed here, for students to share their writing, extend their learning, and receive constructive feedback from classmates. For the final presentation redefine learning, by using a multimedia tool like Sway, reviewed here, to create a presentation including video, images, text, and other research information.

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Makerspace for Education - Trish Roffey

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K to 12
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Makerspace for Education provides information and resources for incorporating makerspaces into the classroom for educators new to makerspaces and "makerspace maniacs" like the author....more
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Makerspace for Education provides information and resources for incorporating makerspaces into the classroom for educators new to makerspaces and "makerspace maniacs" like the author. This site takes you from the basics of the makerspace pedagogical framework through materials and tutorials for using makerspaces in the classroom. Use the links at the top of each page to find makerspace lessons and challenges, view videos to understand the constructs of makerspaces, and learn more about the different materials used in makerspaces. Videos reside on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, they may not be viewable.

tag(s): coding (72), makerspace (22), professional development (161), robotics (25)

In the Classroom

Both experienced and newbies to makerspaces should bookmark this site as an excellent resource for developing makerspaces. If new to makerspaces, consider using this site similar to a book study group with your peers. Break the site into different portions beginning with the Why Makerspace? section to learn about constructive ideology and the benefits of makerspaces. Work together to build a database of makerspace resources including professional development information and lesson ideas. Share these resources using Padlet, reviewed here. Padlet offers tools for collaborating and organizing information, use the column feature to organize resources by topics such as professional development, lesson ideas, videos, and makerspace blogs. As you use makerspaces, don't forget to share student successes and struggles as part of the learning process. Have students create a weekly or monthly podcast using Buzzsprout, reviewed here, to enhance their learning. Buzzsprout makes it easy to record podcasts in advance, then publish them on your desired time and date. Use FlipGrid, reviewed here, as a video response tool to have students modify their learning and share ideas and problem-solving methods with you and their classmates.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Babble Dabble Do - Ana Dziengel

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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.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): design (89), engineering (133), makerspace (22), STEM (199)

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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Learning with Santa Tracker - Google

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K to 8
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Google for Education provides a collection of games and lesson plans tailor-made for the December holidays at their site for teachers. Choose from games for social studies, language,...more
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Google for Education provides a collection of games and lesson plans tailor-made for the December holidays at their site for teachers. Choose from games for social studies, language, computer science, and geography. Games include topics like coding, learning other languages, and understanding maps. Further down the home page choose from lesson plans offered in several languages. Each lesson plan is offered for different grade levels and are available in PDF for easy download. Lessons also correlate to national teaching standards.

tag(s): christmas (52), coding (72), cross cultural understanding (127), cultures (111), holidays (138), map skills (80), maps (292)

In the Classroom

Add this site to your tool kit of December teaching resources. Include the games on classroom computers and add to your class website. Replace paper posters and have students share their favorite activities using an on line poster creator like Web Poster Wizard, reviewed here, or PicLits, reviewed here. After practicing coding using the games provided on this site, modify learning by challenging students to create their own game using a tool such as Scratch, reviewed here.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Santa's Village and Tracker - Google

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K to 6
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Google's annual Santa Village features a Santa Tracker for Christmas Eve along with an advent calendar full of surprises. The calendar features change each year, past years have featured...more
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Google's annual Santa Village features a Santa Tracker for Christmas Eve along with an advent calendar full of surprises. The calendar features change each year, past years have featured holiday games and educational resources like coding games and a visit to the North Pole. Start checking this site on December 1 to find the latest goodies offered!

tag(s): christmas (52), cross cultural understanding (127), cultures (111), holidays (138), maps (292)

In the Classroom

Share a link to the Santa's Village on your class website and classroom computers. Allow students to explore and try options offered each day. Replace paper and pencil and have students share information from the daily activities on a blog using Edublog, reviewed here. Include images and videos of activities with blog posts. Use the site to introduce a unit on Holidays Around the World and for a final project modify learning and have students use Google My Maps, reviewed here, to create a virtual field trip around the world featuring some of Santa's stops.

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Patches - vizorvr

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6 to 12
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Design and create WebVR and WebGL experiences without writing code using Patches. Patches offers over 350 options from simple programming to more complex options. Learn more about how...more
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Design and create WebVR and WebGL experiences without writing code using Patches. Patches offers over 350 options from simple programming to more complex options. Learn more about how to use the site and explore ideas by browsing the sample projects and viewing tutorials on the site's YouTube and Vimeo channels.

tag(s): coding (72), creativity (120), virtual field trips (55)

In the Classroom

Share Patches with your students who are familiar with virtual reality and coding to use to expand their ability to create vr experiences. For those not familiar with this technology, consider beginning with the Vizor 360 link located at the bottom of the home page. Use this tool to drag, drop, and create 360 interactive experiences of any location. Begin by creating a virtual tour of your classroom together and sharing on your class website. Be sure to take advantage of the many tutorials found on the site to help you and your students to get started or work through problems along the way. Begin using the WebVR portion of the site by sharing examples with students on your interactive whiteboard to demonstrate the different ways the tool has been used. Have students choose one of the tools, then use the edit feature to make changes. After exploring options in the available projects, have students create their own project from the beginning. Instead of assigning written reports, or craft projects, offer students the option to create an experience using Patches to demonstrate landforms, types of plants, or a virtual scene from a novel. Have students explain their finished project using Free Screen Recorder Online, reviewed here. Ask students to share challenges faced in making their projects and how they were able to resolve their issues along the way.

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CodeSpark Academy for Teachers - CodeSpark

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K to 5
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Teach students to code with the free, engaging activities and curriculum from CodeSpark. Available free to verified teachers and librarians, this program provides all you need to set...more
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Teach students to code with the free, engaging activities and curriculum from CodeSpark. Available free to verified teachers and librarians, this program provides all you need to set up and manage your classroom and monitor student progress. CodeSpark adds new content each month providing an ongoing resource for coding activities for your students.

tag(s): coding (72), differentiation (50), logic (246), problem solving (292), STEM (199)

In the Classroom

Even if you aren't familiar with coding, use CodeSpark Academy as the perfect opportunity for you and your students to "get your feet wet" with coding skills. After sharing and demonstrating the site with students on your interactive board add a link to CodeSpark on student computers. If you don't have enough computers in your classroom, take advantage of the free Unplugged activities available on your Teacher Dashboard for use as a coding center. Don't forget to use this site to find ideas for your Hour of Code activities. Instead of sharing pictures of students participating in CodeSpark activities on your class newsletter, record and share videos of students engaged in problem-solving discussions and enjoying learning how to code.

Have students share their thinking process through blogging as a reflection on their learning and include their writing, images, and video in a digital portfolio using a tool like bulb, reviewed here. As students become more proficient in coding, introduce new programs that provide additional learning opportunities such as Scratch, reviewed here. Scratch includes many different activities for creating games, stories, and animations through coding. Have student experts share their secrets for successful coding by creating video explainers with My Simpleshow, reviewed here. Add these videos to your other resources available for student access.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Disney Hour of Code Digital Toolkit - Moana: Wayfinding with Code - Disney and Code.org

Grades
2 to 6
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Participate in Hour of Code activities using Disney's Moana as an engaging introduction to computer science. This site includes videos, a printable toolkit, and a hands-on coding adventure...more
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Participate in Hour of Code activities using Disney's Moana as an engaging introduction to computer science. This site includes videos, a printable toolkit, and a hands-on coding adventure geared toward students ages eight through twelve. There is information in the toolkit sharing suggestions for preparing for your Hour of Code activities including coordinating volunteers and providing the appropriate technology needed for the session.

tag(s): coding (72), STEM (199)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of these free materials to plan your Hour of Code activities for your school or classroom. Although created for Hour of Code, use these materials to create student interest in computer science at any time. Find many other coding activities and tutorials for all ability levels at Code, reviewed here. Instead of using the invitation provided in this activity, enhance learning and have students personalize and create their own flyer and invitations using Canva, reviewed here. Use Canva after your activity to send thank you notes to volunteers. Extend learning and have students share their coding stories (including successes and failures) using FlipGrid, reviewed here. Encourage students to continue to learn about coding and computer science using Scratch, reviewed here, to create their own learning games.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Turtle Academy - TurtleAcademy

Grades
4 to 12
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Turtle Academy offers lessons in LOGO programming language for beginner programmers. Select the lessons link to begin and follow lesson activities. For those with some programming experience,...more
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Turtle Academy offers lessons in LOGO programming language for beginner programmers. Select the lessons link to begin and follow lesson activities. For those with some programming experience, this site allows you to select any portion of lessons as a starting point. In addition to lessons, take advantage of Turtle Academy's playground to create, share, and save programs.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): coding (72), computers (102), logic (246), STEM (199)

In the Classroom

Share Turtle Academy with students as part of a computer coding center. The ability to select different portions of lessons makes this a great tool for both novice and experienced programmers. Ask more proficient students to become advisors to newer programmers and share their knowledge and skills. Begin using this site by demonstrating lessons and activities on an interactive whiteboard or with a projector. Modify student learning and understanding by asking them to create video explainers for different skills using a tool like Rawshorts, reviewed here, then share videos on your class website for student use at any time. Looking for other coding activities for your classroom? Find more at TeachersFirst's Coding in the Classroom special topic page.

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STEAM Art Lessons - Tricia Fuglestad

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K to 8
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Do you need inspiration for art and technology-rich STEAM lessons? Take a look at the many ideas on this site created by art teacher Tricia Fuglestad. Lesson topics include ideas ...more
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Do you need inspiration for art and technology-rich STEAM lessons? Take a look at the many ideas on this site created by art teacher Tricia Fuglestad. Lesson topics include ideas based on famous works of art like Edvard Munch's The Scream and Gilbert Stuart's George Washington portrait. Each lesson consists of a link to the blog post describing the lesson, many of these also include a video overview of the activity. Editor's Note: Some links in the lessons go to a paid site to purchase lesson materials such as PowerPoints. The free lesson ideas and suggestions on this site are sufficient for creating and teaching these ideas without having to buy anything additional.

tag(s): black history (59), coding (72), collaboration (33), creativity (120), digital storytelling (151), dr seuss (11), drawing (78), environment (320), graphic design (38), great depression (27), literacy (103), nutrition (157), photography (155), poetry (222), problem solving (292), qr codes (19), read across america (6), STEM (199), stories and storytelling (34), symmetry (51)

In the Classroom

If you feel that you are strong in the arts but not technology (or the other way around), find a teaching partner that complements your strength and work together to teach lessons from this site. Use ideas from here in your classroom makerspace. Download the browser extension, Surfmark, reviewed here, to add notes and questions as you prepare to teach lessons from this blog. Surfmark offers the ability to collaborate and share with others through the addition of written and audio notes to any web page. Use lesson activities found on this site as a replacement for traditional research projects, book reports, or written reports. Have students use a blogging tool like Edublog, reviewed here to share images and videos of their work from start to finish and to reflect upon learning. Have older students extend learning through the use of Symbaloo Learning Paths, reviewed here. Ask them to research and find additional information on the topic of your lesson and create a learning path for other students to complete. For younger students, create a Symbaloo Learning Path for students to complete as a center activity to complement your STEAM learning activities.

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Curious George STEM Collection - PBS Kids

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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, 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 (144), architecture (84), careers (145), charts and graphs (197), engineering (133), measurement (179), recycling (59), rockets (18), senses (31), simple machines (35), soil (21), sorting (12), STEM (199), water (132)

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. For augmentation of lessons take pictures of class activities, then have students annotate images using ThingLink, reviewed here. Use ThingLink for students to add a voice recording of their understanding of science and math concepts learned during lessons.

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Microsoft Virtual Academy - Microsoft

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8 to 12
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Find free online training for a variety of skills and products, delivered by experts in the field, at Microsoft Virtual Academy. Choose from the many courses offered for developers,...more
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Find free online training for a variety of skills and products, delivered by experts in the field, at Microsoft Virtual Academy. Choose from the many courses offered for developers, IT pros, and data pros by topic or product. Some options include beginner courses and learning paths for students interested in technology careers. Participate in courses by viewing a series of videos then completing a final course assessment.

tag(s): computers (102), Microsoft (59), STEM (199)

In the Classroom

Share the Virtual Academy with students interested in learning more about technology and considering careers in computer programming. Have students choose courses of interest to complete on their own as part of a computer technology course. Share with the leader of after-school computer clubs to supplement their current material.

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Scratchwork - Scratchwork LLC

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8 to 12
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Scratchwork is a collaborative whiteboard tool developed by mathematicians. This site uses LaTex code formatting for use with science and math documents. Draw, write and upload PDF...more
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Scratchwork is a collaborative whiteboard tool developed by mathematicians. This site uses LaTex code formatting for use with science and math documents. Draw, write and upload PDF documents for use on the whiteboard. Another unique feature allows you to scan written equations then access individual portions for use within the whiteboard. Collaborate in real time using chat, audio, and video features. When complete, download and save your whiteboard activities. Sign up with email or Google is required, and it allows you to access boards and share them at a later time. Free options include four boards with up to 100 MB storage with basic math recognition.

tag(s): collaboration (33), drawing (78), equations (153), iwb (32), problem solving (292)

In the Classroom

Use Scratchwork in place of other whiteboard tools in secondary math and science classrooms for collaboration purposes. Scan written work while in a video chat as you and your student discuss questions and problem-solving activities. Share Scratchwork with students to use with peers to discuss and collaborate on homework. Ask students to use this site, then export their discussions in PDF format to demonstrate the exploration of concepts. Have students document learning from this site and other problem-solving activities using a blogging tool like Edublog, reviewed here.

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Microsoft MakeCode - Microsoft

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K to 12
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Learn computer science through hands-on learning projects for all ages at Microsoft MakeCode. Take advantage of project ideas to inspire computing projects for your classroom. Introductory...more
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Learn computer science through hands-on learning projects for all ages at Microsoft MakeCode. Take advantage of project ideas to inspire computing projects for your classroom. Introductory courses for middle school students teach the basics of coding and beyond. Learn more through live sessions offered weekly by Microsoft team editors as they share tips for using different editing programs. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable.

tag(s): coding (72), makerspace (22), Microsoft (59), STEM (199)

In the Classroom

Make use of the resources offered by Microsoft to share with your students as they learn how to code. Share project ideas with students and include materials for them to create their projects as part of makerspace activities. Have students take pictures of their creation and enhance their learning by using ThingLink, reviewed here, to add audio to describe their creative process. Add images to your class website as part of your student work gallery. Challenge students to redefine learning by using Sway, reviewed here, to create an online multimedia page including images, video, and text to describe, evaluate, and share their work with coding projects. Include project ideas from the site and set up a makerspace during open house events at your school.

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OK Go Sandbox - University of St Thomas and Dr. AnnMarie Thomas

Grades
6 to 12
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Capture the interest of your most reluctant students with these STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Math) projects presented through music videos and guided inquiry challenges....more
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Capture the interest of your most reluctant students with these STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Math) projects presented through music videos and guided inquiry challenges. Rock videos provide the basis for the learning concepts followed by a series of question and answers along with student challenges. Examples found on the site include lessons on simple machines demonstrated through a chain reaction and creating sound through everyday objects. Other resources include educator guides and student journal worksheets. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable. You could always view the videos at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as ClipGrab, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): gravity (51), mass (25), motion (70), sound (106), STEM (199)

In the Classroom

Delight your students with the videos and activities provided on the site to include with your current science lessons. Place students in groups to complete the challenges offered. Have students take collaborative, digital notes using Webnote, reviewed here; tell students to be sure to save the URL to share their notes and questions with you and their peers. Ask students to record their work images and video. Share final projects including the digital research notes, images, and videos using a multimedia presentation tool like Sway, reviewed here.
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Twitter Chat: Using Social Media Practice Spaces in the Classroom - TeachersFirst

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K to 12
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This archived Twitter chat is from June 2018 and will open in TweetChat. The title of this chat is - Using Social Media Practice Spaces in the Classroom. Through ...more
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This archived Twitter chat is from June 2018 and will open in TweetChat. The title of this chat is - Using Social Media Practice Spaces in the Classroom. Through this chat participants will: 1. Discuss ways to promote digital citizenship within the classroom, 2. Share tech tools and activities that can be used to allow students to practice social media skills, and 3. Collaborate with other educators to share promising practices around edtech in the classroom. Check out the resources that are shared and try the tips that are provided.

tag(s): social media (31), twitterchatarchive (57)

In the Classroom

Share this chat with your colleagues looking for sites and information about using social media practice spaces in the classroom. Explore the various tools that are shared.

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Web Cultures Web Archive - Library of Congress

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8 to 12
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The Library of Congress offers this collection to document and share information on emerging cultural traditions on the web. Information includes communication created through the use...more
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The Library of Congress offers this collection to document and share information on emerging cultural traditions on the web. Information includes communication created through the use of technology including GIFs, memes, online communities, emojis, and slang. Browse the site to view current entries or use the filters to sort by date or title. Other links allow users to find information on specific topics or languages.

tag(s): cross cultural understanding (127), cultures (111), digital citizenship (68), STEM (199)

In the Classroom

Include this Library of Congress collection with your other resources shared with students for research. Consider using Padlet, reviewed here, to share resources with students. Sort information by topic and add notes then embed your Padlet onto your class website for student use. After studying information found on this site, ask students to create a short animated video using a tool like Powtoon, reviewed here, to compare and contrast the cultures of different time periods or countries.

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STEM Resource Finder - The Concord Consortium

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K to 12
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Do you struggle to find quality resources for teaching STEM lessons? Check out over 260 lessons and units provided on this comprehensive website. Use filters to choose grade level,...more
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Do you struggle to find quality resources for teaching STEM lessons? Check out over 260 lessons and units provided on this comprehensive website. Use filters to choose grade level, content, and type of activity, or use the keyword search to locate specific content. All resources include correlation to science standards and most include several interactives and online response options.

tag(s): animals (319), cells (99), earthquakes (51), engineering (133), equations (153), measurement (179), plants (175), pollution (65), problem solving (292), space (226), stars (69), STEM (199), temperature (33), weather (206)

In the Classroom

Be sure to bookmark this site as a resource for many interactives and activities for teaching STEM topics. Place students work in groups to complete activities or share ideas from this site for science fair projects. Ask students to share their research and projects using a tool like PortfolioVillage, reviewed here. PortfolioVillage offers a variety of options for building a personalized webpage without knowledge of coding.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Citizenship in the Digital Age (Infographic) - Diana Fingal

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4 to 12
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Discover the parallels and differences between a good citizen and a good digital citizen with this interesting infographic. The nine points shared compare the hallmarks of good citizenship...more
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Discover the parallels and differences between a good citizen and a good digital citizen with this interesting infographic. The nine points shared compare the hallmarks of good citizenship to the similar applications in digital citizenship. Be sure to check out the related links shared on this page to learn more about promoting good digital citizenship.

tag(s): cyberbullying (45), digital citizenship (68), infographics (51), internet safety (117)

In the Classroom

Share this infographic on an interactive whiteboard or with a projector with students as part of ongoing discussions on becoming good digital citizens. Ask students to create their own infographics using Canva Infographic Creator, reviewed here, to share different components of online safety and responsibility. Consider having groups of students create weekly podcasts sharing tips and information on digital citizenship. Podcast Generator, reviewed here, is a free tool for creating and sharing podcasts.

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Twitter Chat: Infusing STEM Into Any Classroom - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This archived Twitter chat is from June 2018 and will open in TweetChat. The title of this chat is - Infusing STEM Into Any Classroom. Through this chat participants ...more
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This archived Twitter chat is from June 2018 and will open in TweetChat. The title of this chat is - Infusing STEM Into Any Classroom. Through this chat participants will: 1. Discuss ways to incorporate STEM into any content area, 2. Share tech tools that promote STEM activities, and 3. Discuss ways to promote critical thinking skills through STEM education. Read the many comments and suggestions by both the moderator and other participants.

tag(s): STEM (199), twitterchatarchive (57)

In the Classroom

Are you ready to infuse STEM into your classroom? Learn new STEM trends and tools for your classroom. Share this chat with your colleagues looking for sites and information about infusing STEM into the classroom. Explore the various tools that are shared.

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