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Virtual Field Trip to Ellis Island - Scholastic

Grades
3 to 8
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This 30-minute video guides viewers through the history of Ellis Island and the process faced by immigrants reaching the island. The narrator shows different areas of the buildings...more
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This 30-minute video guides viewers through the history of Ellis Island and the process faced by immigrants reaching the island. The narrator shows different areas of the buildings on Ellis Island and interviews park rangers sharing stories of their families along with personal stories of immigrants. Choose from the links at the top for the Teacher's Activity Guides for additional Scholastic resources for teaching about immigration and Ellis Island.

tag(s): ellis island (7), immigrants (27), immigration (55)

In the Classroom

Include this video with your other resources for students using a bookmarking tool like Symbaloo EDU, reviewed here. Symbaloo includes icons to make organizing and sharing information easy for any topic. Enhance learning by asking students to interview family members to learn about immigrants in their family tree or research famous immigrants. Have them create a webpage using Hashify, reviewed here, to share information about their family member including country they came from, reasons for leaving, their immigration experience, and their life in America. In addition to telling stories about immigrants, create a timeline using Timeline Maker, reviewed here.

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Your Guide to Literary Road Trips Across America - carrentals.com

Grades
6 to 12
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Inspired by road trips from the past, this quirky infographic shares facts from literary road trips of famous authors. Featured authors include Hunter Thompson, Jack Kerouac, F. Scott...more
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Inspired by road trips from the past, this quirky infographic shares facts from literary road trips of famous authors. Featured authors include Hunter Thompson, Jack Kerouac, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and others. Each portion of the infographic includes route length, travel time, and starting and end points. Additional information on this site includes a short description of the featured road trip including the name of the novel, period background, and a link to a map with the entire route.

tag(s): infographics (51), maps (218), novels (24)

In the Classroom

Use this infographic as a starting point for many activities. Have students create their own infographics using Canva, reviewed here, to share facts and information from novels they read. Use the included maps as inspiration and have students create a roadmap based on a novel. Google My Maps, reviewed here, includes tools for creating personalized maps and you can upload images to create a virtual field trip. Ask students to create a multimedia presentation using Sway, reviewed here, to share information about places featured in novels they read. With Sway, include maps, videos, and images to tell about the various locations or featured time periods.

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National Cowboy Museum - National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum

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3 to 8
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Learn about the exploration and pioneers of the American West through two online unit studies for middle school students. "Emigrants Crossing the Plains" utilizes the paintings of Albert...more
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Learn about the exploration and pioneers of the American West through two online unit studies for middle school students. "Emigrants Crossing the Plains" utilizes the paintings of Albert Bierstadt created during his journeys along the Oregon Trail. "End of the Trail" focuses on the sculptures of James Earle Fraser depicting spiritual representations of Native Americans. Each unit includes an introduction, discussion questions, and three teaching activities. Be sure also to check out the link on this site to the "Wandering Western Chest" that includes reading suggestions and lesson ideas for grades 3-5.

tag(s): art history (73), artists (72), native americans (81), westward expansion (35)

In the Classroom

Add these teaching units to your current resources for teaching about westward expansion of America, Native Americans, the 1800's, or explorers. Have all students research and discuss other artwork depicting American expansion, ask them to use Padlet, reviewed here, to organize and curate their saved resources. Ask your more tech-savvy students to build a timeline of events based on westward expansion or Native Americans using Timeline Maker, reviewed here, or choose from other timeline creation tools located here. Include images, web links, and videos to create interactive timelines. Use the "Wandering Western Chest" links as a starter to creating your own Western Chest. Include books, artifacts, drawings, and more and share as an introduction to your western unit.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Microsoft Bing - FUN - Microsoft

Grades
4 to 12
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Bing Fun offers a selection of web-based mini games in a variety of formats like puzzles and trivia quizzes. Scroll down the page to choose from the available options including ...more
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Bing Fun offers a selection of web-based mini games in a variety of formats like puzzles and trivia quizzes. Scroll down the page to choose from the available options including quizzes on current news and geography. Most quizzes offer several options for level of difficulty, the current news quiz allows users to select quizzes for several different weeks.

tag(s): logic (172), Microsoft (64), problem solving (220), puzzles (150), trivia (16)

In the Classroom

Include Bing Fun as a link on your classroom computers and share the link on your class webpage. Have students try their skill on Sudoku and other logic puzzles to increase problem solving skills. Use the current news questions as a starting point for discussions in social studies classes. Ask students to choose one of the questions as a starting point for digging deeper into the topic. Have students share weekly podcasts discussing current topics and background information. Radionomy, reviewed here provides free podcasting tools.

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Dollar Street - Gapminder

Grades
3 to 12
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Think of everyone in the world living on one street; the poorest people are on the left and the rich on the right. Everyone else falls somewhere in the middle. ...more
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Think of everyone in the world living on one street; the poorest people are on the left and the rich on the right. Everyone else falls somewhere in the middle. That is the setup of Dollar Street, a searchable, visual database sharing income features from 264 families from around 50 countries and including over 30,000 photos. Take a quick tour to learn how to use the interactive and understand financial guidelines used based on income per month. Use the drop-down boxes to select specific criteria including the number of beds, homes, or family snapshots. An additional dropbox allows you to select specific countries to view.

tag(s): cross cultural understanding (145), cultures (97), family (54), financial literacy (93), globe (13), homes (7)

In the Classroom

Most teachers will want to bookmark this site to use in many different situations. Share Dollar Street on your interactive whiteboard to compare and contrast your community and living situation to those around the world. When reading books mentioning other countries, look up financial information using this site to help students understand typical living situations. Use Dollar Street as a starting point for research projects. Ask students to create a virtual field trip to their chosen location using Google My Maps, reviewed here. Google My Maps includes tools for labeling stops on a map as participants follow locations created.

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Encyclopedic Entries - National Geographic

Grades
3 to 12
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Think of this site as a digital, illustrated encyclopedia of environmental words and terms. Choose any entry to find beautiful images along with complete encyclopedic entries and additional...more
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Think of this site as a digital, illustrated encyclopedia of environmental words and terms. Choose any entry to find beautiful images along with complete encyclopedic entries and additional resources. Use filters to search by keyword, grade level, or subject.

tag(s): continents (29), ecology (97), environment (219), oceans (128), space (200), weather (154)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of the information on this site for use throughout the school year. Consider choosing an entry each week to share with students and explore further. Use a bookmarking site like Symbaloo, reviewed here, to share other links on the same topic. Ask students to locate information on Google Maps and create a story to tell about their topic using a site like Heganoo, reviewed here. Heganoo allows you to create interactive maps including images, videos, and more to tell a story.

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America's Rainforests - Prince William Network

Grades
4 to 12
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Join science experts to visit America's rainforests in Puerto Rico and Alaska through an electronic field trip shared on this site. The hour and a half long webcast presents information...more
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Join science experts to visit America's rainforests in Puerto Rico and Alaska through an electronic field trip shared on this site. The hour and a half long webcast presents information on plants, animals, and features of the rainforest. America's Rainforests also includes a variety of lesson plans aligned to science standards for teachers along with a student section with more information about this biome.

tag(s): biomes (114), rainforests (15)

In the Classroom

Include this site with your teaching materials on the rainforests. After learning about America's Rainforests, have students find and map rainforests around the world. Have students create maps sharing this information using Zeemaps, reviewed here. Zeemaps allows students to create audio recordings AND choose various locations on a map where they find rainforests. Use Zeemaps to modify technology use by creating animated maps featuring various location stops that can feature text, video, and audio. As a final project, have students create a Symbaloo Learning Path (reviewed here). This site allows users to personalize a learning activity featuring videos, games, quizzes, and more.

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Rainforest Lesson Plan - The Wild Classroom

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K to 8
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Don't let the basic look of this website fool you; it contains many resources for teaching about the rainforest biome. In addition to the information on the home page, there ...more
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Don't let the basic look of this website fool you; it contains many resources for teaching about the rainforest biome. In addition to the information on the home page, there are many resources found by clicking on icons near the top of the page next to the arrow stating "Click on me." Learn about species found in the rainforest, scientist profiles, rainforest conservation, and a small selection of locations around the world containing rainforests.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): biomes (114), habitats (79), rainforests (15), scientists (61)

In the Classroom

Include this site as part of your teaching resources for the rainforest biome. Instead of creating a folder on student computers with links to various resources, consider using a bookmarking site like Symbaloo, reviewed here, to gather all of your favorite sites into one easy to use place for students. Instead of taking notes into a notebook as students gather information about the rainforest, have them write blogs sharing facts, images, and discussion of conservation efforts. Replace paper pen by asking students to write blogs sharing information learned using a tool like Edublog, reviewed here. Edublog offers tools for creating class and individual blogs. As a way to enhance student understanding, challenge students to complete a culminating project for your biome unit by creating and sharing custom maps using Google My Maps,reviewed here, to send visitors on a virtual field trip of rainforests across the globe. With Google My Maps students can embed images and videos on pointers and shapes for any given location.

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Google My Maps - Google

Grades
4 to 12
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You may already be familiar with Google Maps, reviewed here, but Google My Maps takes working with maps a step further. Use Google My Maps to create...more
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You may already be familiar with Google Maps, reviewed here, but Google My Maps takes working with maps a step further. Use Google My Maps to create custom maps with features you add. Add points or shapes to any location, use the embedded search to find places then save to your map, import information from spreadsheets, and customize your map with colored icons and your uploaded images and videos. Collaborate on your project just like you would with Google Documents, then embed maps into your website or blog.

tag(s): maps (218), virtual field trips (66)

In the Classroom

Share Google My Maps on an interactive whiteboard or projector to create virtual trips for many situations. Create a trip to biomes around the world, visit places mentioned within books, map out battlefield locations for different wars, or find and save different kinds of landforms on your map. The possibilities are as endless as your imagination. Embed completed maps onto your class webpage or blog for students to view when reviewing for tests or quizzes. Have older students complete their own Google My Map project to create their own virtual field trips. This site is perfect to use in conjunction with TeachersFirst Reading Treks to follow the adventures of characters in the featured stories. Not ready to create your own maps? Use the explore feature on the site to find many examples of maps made by others.

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ClustrMaps - Free Website Map Widget - ClustrMaps

Grades
K to 12
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Add a real-time map of your website or blog's visitors with this geo-location hitmap. Download then customize the widget with your preference of colors, size, and stats available for...more
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Add a real-time map of your website or blog's visitors with this geo-location hitmap. Download then customize the widget with your preference of colors, size, and stats available for viewing. Follow the steps to create your customized code then place on your site.

tag(s): blogs (73), computers (99), maps (218)

In the Classroom

Students will love seeing the wide variety of visitors to their classroom website. Have a student share locations of viewers with other students, then research to learn more about those areas around the world. Challenge students to create an interactive map with images and videos using a tool such as Stepmap, reviewed here, for where the visitors to their blog live. With Stepmap students can colorize specific areas including national parks, or the city and neighborhoods of their visitors to their blog; additional options include latitude and longitude lines, and icons. Ask students to create an annotated image of any location including text boxes and related links using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here. Display a world map in your classroom and pin locations of viewers on the map for students to see at all times.

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TeachersFirst Reading Treks - Make Learning a Journey - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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Your students can visit the world and build their background knowledge when they choose to read a book in conjunction with Reading Treks. Find fiction and informational books at every...more
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Your students can visit the world and build their background knowledge when they choose to read a book in conjunction with Reading Treks. Find fiction and informational books at every reading level. Each Reading Trek unit has a downloadable PDF with Common Core State Standards, ISTE Standards, Grade Level, Ideas and Activities for using the Reading Trek in class, and a list of Helpful Resources. There is also a Google Maps (KMZ) file. Under the About TeachersFirst Reading Treks on the home page find step-by-step instructions for when you're ready to use a Reading Trek. TeachersFirst is just getting started creating Treks for books. Do you have a suggestion? Select Suggest a Trek from the left menu to let us know about it. We'd love to hear from you!

tag(s): independent reading (105), maps (218), reading comprehension (122), reading lists (72)

In the Classroom

These units are perfect for use with a whole-class novel, literature circles, or individual reading! Ask students to keep a journal about what they are reading and learning. Replace traditional paper and pen journals using an easy virtual journaling tool such as Penzu, reviewed here. With Penzu you can add images or your own artwork as illustrations. If you are conducting literature circles a good tool to use for small group assignments and communication is Asana, reviewed here, or Edmodo, reviewed here. For students or student groups to share their book with their peers, challenge them to enhance their learning and design an interactive multimedia poster using Genial.ly, reviewed here.

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Bing Maps - Microsoft

Grades
K to 12
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Use Bing Maps as your online resource for mapping locations and more. Allow Bing to recognize your location, then find and map directions anywhere. Additional features allow you to...more
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Use Bing Maps as your online resource for mapping locations and more. Allow Bing to recognize your location, then find and map directions anywhere. Additional features allow you to view current traffic along the route. Additional icons offer nearby locations for restaurants, gas stations, and more. Choose different views for viewing maps including road, aerial, and street-side views. Sign in to Bing Maps using your Microsoft account to save and access your collections from any device.

tag(s): directions (12), maps (218), Microsoft (64)

In the Classroom

If you teach geography, this one's a must. It is also helpful for showing students WHERE a story or news event takes place. In lower grades, use it to show students the basics of their community. Teach map skills by showing students their own community. Zoom in on their street or the school. This site is perfect for sharing on an interactive whiteboard. Set up a class Microsoft account (or use student accounts if permitted). Have students create their own custom route plans to tour historic sites. Challenge math students to plan the most economical route to visit several vacation destinations, including gas mileage and gas prices. Have students create place-marker files of the important places in the life of a famous person or the route traveled by a particular unit during the Civil War. Have student groups create place-marker files to show environmental sites, habitats, landforms, or anything you can place on a map. Share or embed student-created maps using the links and embed code provided.

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Timeline Eons - Maani.us

Grades
6 to 12
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Timeline Eons presents the history of the world from the Big Bang through current time on an interactive timeline. Additional events predict changes to the earth 22,000,000,000 years...more
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Timeline Eons presents the history of the world from the Big Bang through current time on an interactive timeline. Additional events predict changes to the earth 22,000,000,000 years in the future. Scroll left or right to move through developments on the timeline or set the timeline to run automatically. Zoom in to view events or use the search feature to find specific events. Many events feature an illustration or photograph; others include a short video. When viewing on a computer, choose the link with three dots on the upper-left side of the screen to see information on the timeline's features.

tag(s): climate change (72), conservation (79), DAT device agnostic tool (166), geologic time (9), space (200), timelines (47)

In the Classroom

Have students explore the timeline on their own, then research and share information on any given period of time. Encourage students to view future predictions on the timeline as a research project to find the basis of the predictions. Have students create a simple interactive infographic sharing their findings using Easel.ly, reviewed here .

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Anyplace America - AnyplaceAmerica.com

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4 to 12
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Anyplace America provides an extensive resource of free topographical maps of the United States. Choose maps by water, land or man-made features, or browse maps featuring each state....more
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Anyplace America provides an extensive resource of free topographical maps of the United States. Choose maps by water, land or man-made features, or browse maps featuring each state. Maps include local information including nearby points of interest, weather statistics, and photographs. Most also include a link to download a color PDF of the featured map. Google and the U.S. Geological Survey provide the maps used on this site.

tag(s): bridges (12), glaciers (16), landforms (37), maps (218), mountains (12), national parks (18), natural resources (36), rivers (13), volcanoes (50), water (96)

In the Classroom

Bookmark this site to use when teaching about landforms, bodies of waters, or geographic features. Be sure to create a link on classroom computers or your class website for students to access at any time. Have students use a mapping tool such as Click2Map, reviewed here, to create a map of local landforms with audio stories and pictures included.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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The Grassland Biome - University of California Museum of Paleontology

Grades
7 to 12
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This short, but informative, site shares information about the grasslands biomes. Learn about the differences between savannah and temperate grasslands. Explanations include detailed...more
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This short, but informative, site shares information about the grasslands biomes. Learn about the differences between savannah and temperate grasslands. Explanations include detailed information on locations, climate, and vegetation found in each biome.

tag(s): biomes (114), climate (78), environment (219)

In the Classroom

Include this site with other resources when teaching lessons about biomes. The text portions may be challenging, so you should pair weaker readers with a partner as they research on this site. Have students create a simple infographic sharing their knowledge about grassland biomes using Visme, reviewed here.

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Grassland - Jeremy M.B. Smith/Encyclopedia Brittanica

Grades
7 to 12
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Explore the grasslands biome in-depth with this article from Encylopedia Brittanica. Read through to learn about the origins of grasslands, the type of environment necessary to maintain...more
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Explore the grasslands biome in-depth with this article from Encylopedia Brittanica. Read through to learn about the origins of grasslands, the type of environment necessary to maintain a grassland, and common uses such as grazing and agricultural production. Be sure not to miss links near the top of the page to View All Media, and to Print, Cite, and Share the article.

tag(s): biomes (114), ecology (97), environment (219)

In the Classroom

Before exploring the site as a class, download images of grasslands and have students identify the biome and its properties. The text portions may be challenging, so you should pair weaker readers with a partner as they research on this site. Include this site as a resource for your biome unit by sharing a link on your class website. Upon completion of your biome unit, have students make an infographic showing what they learned using Visme, reviewed here.

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A Guide to Anthropogenic Biomes of the World - Andrew Petit de Mange & Kelly Kennedy

Grades
7 to 12
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Find a guide to understanding our planet through the ways human impact has changed ecological patterns and processes. Choose from the six biomes for a broad overview of information,...more
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Find a guide to understanding our planet through the ways human impact has changed ecological patterns and processes. Choose from the six biomes for a broad overview of information, then dig deeper by selecting one of the subtopics within a biome to view facts as related to climate, population, and land use.

tag(s): biomes (114), earth (172), ecology (97), environment (219)

In the Classroom

Include this site with your class resources when teaching about biomes and ecology. Have students create online posters individually or together as a class to display human impact on your local environment using a tool such as Adobe Spark for Education, reviewed here, or PicLits, reviewed here. Have cooperative learning groups create podcasts sharing ideas on how to reduce the impact of humans on our environment. Use a site such as Buzzsprout, reviewed here.

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GameOn.World - Jeff Borland and Orkhan Nadirli

Grades
6 to 12
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Increase your knowledge of the world and geography in an entertaining way with GameOn.World. Select from one of the nine categories (Sports, Entertainment, Science, Cities, Facts, People/Things,...more
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Increase your knowledge of the world and geography in an entertaining way with GameOn.World. Select from one of the nine categories (Sports, Entertainment, Science, Cities, Facts, People/Things, and more), and challenge others to join in using the Game I.D. and their name. Play GameOn.World on any device with Internet access; No registration is required! Switch the audio on or off at the bottom of the screen.

tag(s): famous people (20), game based learning (157), sports (81), trivia (16)

In the Classroom

GameOn.World is addictive and not just for teaching geography! It is a whole class activity, so introduce it to your students with a projector and their own devices or classroom computers. The questions are on your large screen or whiteboard, and students answer on their devices. Also, projected on the large screen will be the participant names and results. GameOn is an interactive activity; for instance, for location and timeline games, students respond to questions by moving a marker on a map or clicking a date on a timeline. Use GameOn.World at the beginning of class to engage students immediately. With categories like Sports, Entertainment, Science, Cities, Facts, People/Things, and more, there is something for any student to enjoy and excel in. Use GameOn.World to wrap up the end of class. Students will leave class reluctantly with a smile on their faces! Coming soon to GameOn will be the ability to create your own games, so play what they have, often, and watch for that announcement.

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MetKids - The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Grades
2 to 12
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Explore over 5,000 years of art in three exciting ways at this vibrant, interactive site from The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Along the menu at the top find Explore the ...more
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Explore over 5,000 years of art in three exciting ways at this vibrant, interactive site from The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Along the menu at the top find Explore the Map, where you choose and double click red or yellow markers to explore fun facts and videos about art from all over the world. Next, hop into the Time Machine to learn more about specific time periods, geography, and big ideas such as inventions or creatures. Also find, Watch Videos that teach about celebrations, share art made by kids, or provide detailed directions for creating your art.

tag(s): art history (73), artists (72), inventors and inventions (68), myths and legends (23)

In the Classroom

This site is perfect for use on classroom computers or for a blended class for students to explore on their own. Streghthen student learning by asking them to find information for a specific period of time or country and label what they find important using Webnote, reviewed here; tell students to be sure to save the URL to share their notes and questions with you and their peers. Next, transform classroom technology and extend learning by showing students how to embed media into an interactive time line using Sutori, reviewed here. With Sutorie you can include images, text, and collaboration, or Preceden, reviewed here, for creating multi-layer timelines for over lapping events.

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Twitter Chat: Social Studies When Time is Limited - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This archived Twitter chat is from May 2017 and will open in Wakelet. View this archive to learn tips and tools to use when teaching social studies. Find ideas about ...more
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This archived Twitter chat is from May 2017 and will open in Wakelet. View this archive to learn tips and tools to use when teaching social studies. Find ideas about how to incorporate more social studies when your time is limited during the school day. Browse the strategies offered by the chat moderators and participants.

tag(s): professional development (259), twitterchatarchive (117)

In the Classroom

Is your social studies time limited? Check out this archived chat for tools and tips to use in your class to make social studies stretch past the limited time allotted. Share this tool with your colleagues interested in learning more tips and tools to use in social studies lessons.

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