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Energy Kids - US Energy Information Administration

Grades
K to 8
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Find a great source for all your energy information at Energy Kids! Discover energy sources, forms of energy (renewable and non-renewable), electricity, hydrogen, and recent statistics...more
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Find a great source for all your energy information at Energy Kids! Discover energy sources, forms of energy (renewable and non-renewable), electricity, hydrogen, and recent statistics on energy use. There are games and activities to help reinforce the concepts presented. Detailed lesson plans, science fair experiments, field trip information, and more help you provide a more comprehensive unit. Don't miss the history of energy timeline with all the famous people. There is even a link "For Teachers" where you can find lesson plans from K to secondary.

tag(s): conservation (86), energy (130), natural resources (38)

In the Classroom

Share the resources found here on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Use this site as part of your wiki on energy, renewable resources, and conservation. Add to a center to improve reading skills as well as new literacies in technology. Find excellent information to include for your Prezi, Powerpoint, or Live Binders on energy. Enhance your ESL/ELL students understanding of your energy unit using the visuals and reinforcement of basic concepts.
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The Noun Project - The Noun Project

Grades
K to 12
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Find free, scalable vector images created by a community of designers whose goal is to create a universal global language of symbols that everyone can understand. Vector files are images...more
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Find free, scalable vector images created by a community of designers whose goal is to create a universal global language of symbols that everyone can understand. Vector files are images that do not Snappa, reviewed herehange or become fuzzy when you resize them. Communicating visually is powerful and easy using symbols like these. Move beyond language and cultural barriers in learning and communicating by using these symbols. You must set up a free account to actually download. Note: Many programs cannot use the file format (SVG) but some programs, such as Adobe Illustrator, can. Don't have a program to open the image? Download the image, then upload to the Media Converter (reviewed here) to convert the image. No need to open the file- just convert! Note that the use of these vector images is FREE if the artist(s) attribution is easily viewable and accessible (linked back to the artist's page on the Noun Project site). Many images are in the public domain with no attribution required. Ethical use would still give credit. If you do not want to attribute each time it is used, icons can be purchased for unlimited use instead. Be patient. This site is often SLOW to open and offers slow downloads because of the larger image files.
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tag(s): digital storytelling (144), graphic design (48), images (257), infographics (58), stories and storytelling (43)

In the Classroom

The symbols are useful for autistic support, emotional support, ENL/ELL, and even in world languages. Use these vector diagrams for creating infographics and pictograms in any content area. Use a site such as Snappa, reviewed here. Challenge students to tell a rebus-style story using simple symbols only. This is a fun and imaginative way for students to think creatively. Use these symbols to create classroom signs. Teach students digital citizenship along with creativity by learning to give credit for resources used as they explain. Try using icons like these in the navigation area of a wiki or class website instead of words to increase the accessibility to others. Be sure to include this site as a list of resources for students to use on your wiki or class website. Students can access images to tell their story or to relate/teach content to others. Encourage students to create their own symbols for use in telling a story (great if students have access to programs that can create vector images). Special ed teachers may want to use these symbols on communication boards. Note: since file downloads are slow, you may want to download a collection for your specific lesson or project outside of class time and offer the files to students locally in a shared folder or on a class wiki. Teachers of non-readers will find these symbols useful in making classroom rules or signs.

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Sound Around You - University of Salford

Grades
2 to 12
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Listen to soundscapes recorded all over the world. Find a place of interest on the map, listen to the recording, and read the information about the location. Some locations have ...more
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Listen to soundscapes recorded all over the world. Find a place of interest on the map, listen to the recording, and read the information about the location. Some locations have a link to a Google Map tour. Upload your own soundscapes using the site or through the iPhone/iPad app.

tag(s): cross cultural understanding (155), listening (77), maps (208), senses (20), sound (73), sounds (43)

In the Classroom

Those who teach geography and world cultures will like this! Use this resource to get your students thinking about the sounds around them. Include it when studying sound or the human ear in science class. Connect with other subjects by envisioning smells that would be there or craft a story inspired by the sounds heard at a specific location. Play sounds for your younger students and ask what they hear. Create sound stories together -- or as a creative project --by playing a series of sounds to tell the tale! Use your imagination to add this resource to other location projects used throughout the year. World language teachers could assign students to create a sound and word story about a cultural location. Use these sounds as background and add the dialog!

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Cyberchase - PBS KIDS

Grades
3 to 7
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Join Jackie, Matt, and Inez in the PBS world of Cyberchase, using the magical powers of math and science to take adventures. The "Motherboard" heads the team against the evils ...more
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Join Jackie, Matt, and Inez in the PBS world of Cyberchase, using the magical powers of math and science to take adventures. The "Motherboard" heads the team against the evils of the universe, Hacker. Visit "Games" to find interactives. There are printables found at the "Activities" link. And finally, watch different episodes (see Video) of Cyberchase to practice various math skills. After the show, find links to the math presented in the show. Examples of content topics include: fractions, geometry, math, weather, money, problem solving, using data, using numbers, science and engineering, pre-algebra, measurement, math and sports, and geometry.

tag(s): data (148), engineering (120), fractions (159), money (119), problem solving (226), sports (81), weather (165)

In the Classroom

Introduce math concepts in a unique way, using Cyberchase adventures on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Use this site at your centers/stations to practice, use, and apply math and science skills. Put a link on your class website for students to use for review, reinforcement, and enrichment.
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Multiplication - Krimsten Publishing

Grades
1 to 6
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Practice your multiplication skills using this comprehensive site including games, tips, tricks, free worksheets, quizzes, flash cards, and bingo cards. There are also addition and...more
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Practice your multiplication skills using this comprehensive site including games, tips, tricks, free worksheets, quizzes, flash cards, and bingo cards. There are also addition and subtraction activities. Discover a multiplication table that has a picture with a story for every multiplication fact. Listen to a story about every fact. Beginning (or struggling) learners will benefit from the plethora of multiplication activities that will interest, intrigue, and motivate the varied style of learners in your classroom.
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tag(s): multiplication (122), operations (71)

In the Classroom

Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector when introducing new facts. Use this site at centers or as a homework activity. Find all necessary tools for your class including flashcards, quizzes, practice sheets, and bingo cards. Motivate your reluctant learner as well as add challenge to gifted learners. Give this site to parents as a resource to practice multiplication at home.
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Comments

Good web site with lots of interacting games. Kevin, SC, Grades: 0 - 5

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Fetch - PBS Kids

Grades
2 to 8
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Join Ruff Ruffman in the PBS Kids Game show, Fetch. Learn about animal science as you view (and participate) on this educational game show including 5 contestants ages 10-14. "Ruff"...more
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Join Ruff Ruffman in the PBS Kids Game show, Fetch. Learn about animal science as you view (and participate) on this educational game show including 5 contestants ages 10-14. "Ruff" hosts the game show, reality style with children contestants, learning about science and also crazy challenges. Topics include (but are not limited to) animals, engineering, deserted islands, dinosaur footprints, hover crafts, mummies, song birds, and more. There are past episodes and games available.

tag(s): animal homes (56), birds (45), dinosaurs (40), diseases (67), literacy (110), machines (14), simple machines (17), vocabulary (236)

In the Classroom

Invite Ruff Ruffman into your classroom to add spice to your science, language arts, and math curriculum. Although contestants are ages 10-14, younger students would benefit by watching the activities. Some may be too challenging for younger students to complete on their own. Students will identify with the contestants as they learn and laugh along with Ruff. Add a Ruff adventure or interview as an anticipatory guide for a unit. Share a clip or experiment on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Use as a way to enrich during your unit on mammals, motion, or problem solving. Have older elementary students (or middle school) become familiar with the show's format, and create an "episode" based on your unit of study. Challenge cooperative learning groups to create videos to share using a site such as TeacherTube reviewed here. Create a writing experience from episodes given. Use an episode as a spark to begin a further area of inquiry. Add to your computers as a center time activity, or even as a special earned award. Share on your website as an enrichment source, or a great place for educational learning.

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Martha Speaks - PBS Kids

Grades
K to 3
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Join Martha (the dog) from the book and animated children's series, Martha Speaks. This interactive website focuses on vocabulary and word usage. The site includes interactives,...more
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Join Martha (the dog) from the book and animated children's series, Martha Speaks. This interactive website focuses on vocabulary and word usage. The site includes interactives, printables, videos, and "Martha's Stories" for students to explore. Make newspapers, dog tags, vocabulary word pictures, and more. Vocabulary introduced are not necessarily sight words, yet specialized content area words. Apply and learn new vocabulary in a wide variety of interactive ways. Some game features require Shockwave and/or a webcam. Don't worry. It does not keep your picture.

tag(s): literacy (110), preK (259), rhymes (21), sight words (22), vocabulary (236), vocabulary development (89)

In the Classroom

Intrigue your students to follow the dog, Martha, into new vocabulary learning. Share a book (or video of the show) with your students before introducing this site. Students from Kindergarten through second grade will benefit from the variety of learning activities. Add this site to your centers for an engaging way to learn vocabulary. Add this link to your class website for review or enrichment.
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Dance, Factors, Dance - Stephen Von Worley

Grades
4 to 10
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Dance, Factors, Dance is a wonderful visual display of numbers and factors. The numbers begin at 0 and continue through 10,000. Each number displays as a visual image sorted by ...more
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Dance, Factors, Dance is a wonderful visual display of numbers and factors. The numbers begin at 0 and continue through 10,000. Each number displays as a visual image sorted by factors, or in one large group if prime. At the top of the screen, the actual digits show along with the factorization represented. For example, 10,000 displays as 5X5X5X5X2X2X2X2 with a beautiful star-like image. Speed up the dance or stop at any given point using icons (at the bottom of the page) or go backwards to watch numbers unfold.

tag(s): factoring (25), factors (29), number sense (70), prime numbers (26)

In the Classroom

This is an excellent visualization tool for demonstrating factors and prime numbers. View as a class on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) and explore the different patterns displayed. Have students watch for patterns as numbers grow, or question what happens when numbers are odd or even. Have students explore the site on their own; then use as a journal prompt for students to discuss their exploration of numbers. Ask students how they visualize numbers in their own heads. You may be surprised to learn that some students have visual images of number concepts! Teachers of gifted or visually talented students may want to ask them to create their own "visualizations" of numbers using an animation tool from the Edge.

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I Fake Text - iFakeText.com

Grades
2 to 12
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iFakeText is a tool to create fake screenshots of a series of iPhone text messages. Write a name, then choose an operator and write text in the provided box. Click ...more
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iFakeText is a tool to create fake screenshots of a series of iPhone text messages. Write a name, then choose an operator and write text in the provided box. Click the link "Create your Screenshot" to view the picture. Have the operator READ the text message (great for non-readers). Take a screenshot or share via different social networking platforms or via a link.
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tag(s): creative writing (119), text to speech (19), writing prompts (58)

In the Classroom

Have two characters from a book or two famous people text each other. Create short poetry using this tool. Provide some opening text and ask students to write their guesses of the other person's answers. Have students practice a dialogue or questions and answers. Create a fake text of a conversation and have students use inference skills to state what happened before and after the conversation. You could even use it as a writing prompt. Teach important texting etiquette using this tool. Use a fake text on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) to display word definitions in a fun way. Use this site with your ESL/ELL students (or those learning to read) and have the site READ the text to the students. The ability to use the "text to speech" makes this an easy tool for any age student to try! Tear down the boundaries of delayed reading. Create fake texts of homework or project reminders and post them on your class wiki or web page.

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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 (16), context clues (5), figurative language (15), guided reading (33), main idea (8), parts of speech (40), plot (9), point of view (7), reading comprehension (142), reading strategies (99), sequencing (17), Teacher Utilities (149), themes (10), vocabulary (236)

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, Marq (Lucidpress), Powtoon, or Adobe Express Video Maker.
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CurriConnects Book List: 100 Leaders - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This CurriConnects list offers books for student independent reading about leaders. This list of leaders includes a wide sampling from politics to literature and the arts to entertainment....more
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This CurriConnects list offers books for student independent reading about leaders. This list of leaders includes a wide sampling from politics to literature and the arts to entertainment. CurriConnects thematic book lists include ISBN numbers for ordering or searching, interest grade levels, ESL/ELL levels and Lexiles'® to match student independent reading levels to challenge, not frustrate. Don't miss other CurriConnects themes being added regularly. If your school or public library does not have the books, try an inter-library loan!

tag(s): artists (78), book lists (162), politics (113), presidents (122), scientists (63)

In the Classroom

Use this list as you study any topic that features leaders: the founding fathers, famous scientists, and much more. Encourage students to read about leaders in diverse fields - including the one you are studying - to compare and discuss what makes someone a successful leader and why people rise to the top among their peers across time, place, and circumstance. You could also form an afterschool book club around this list or use the nonfiction listings as practice with informational texts.

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Lingo Hut - lingohut.com

Grades
4 to 12
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Set your sights high to learn world languages! Find both visual and audio lessons. Choose a language from Chinese, Dutch, Japanese, Polish, Russian, or Spanish. A list of lessons with...more
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Set your sights high to learn world languages! Find both visual and audio lessons. Choose a language from Chinese, Dutch, Japanese, Polish, Russian, or Spanish. A list of lessons with tutorials appears and vocabulary for the lesson in your language and the language you wish to learn. Learn colors, counting, days of the week, common phrases, or more challenging language skills. Practice speaking using the microphone tab and say words on your own. Click on the symbols between the tutorial and the vocabulary to try the interactives: matching games, flashcards, listening, and tic tac toe.
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tag(s): chinese (44), japanese (47), russian (24), spanish (105)

In the Classroom

This is a wonderful site to use with students to get a taste of other languages, including during study of world geography or cultures. Assign different tutorials that complement classroom activities. Share this site on your class website or blog as a resource for practice at home. Use this site on your interactive whiteboard to introduce and review world language terms. Obviously this site has many uses in the world language classroom. But this tool could also be used as enrichment for students or even an after-school club! Your verbal-linguistic gifted students would also enjoy learning and comparing basics in several languages. If you have ENL/ELL students who speak one of these languages, invite others to learn basics to converse with and respect their peers.

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Wild Kratts - Kratt Brothers Company / 9 Story Entertainment production.

Grades
2 to 7
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Join Aviva, Chris, Martin, Jimmy, and Koki on their quest to save the animals of our world. Based on the PBS television show, explore biology, zoology, and ecology of our ...more
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Join Aviva, Chris, Martin, Jimmy, and Koki on their quest to save the animals of our world. Based on the PBS television show, explore biology, zoology, and ecology of our planet. You will also learn small ways to make a big impact on saving our world. With a login, you can save points earned from games and receive special powers from animals to compete and survive in the games using your avatar. You do not need any email account to register/sign in. Explore the avatar creation area, games, creaturepedia, habitats, and videos to help learn about animals. Click on the Teachers Link (For Grownups) at the top of the page to find lesson plans, printable PDFs, objectives, and more.
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tag(s): africa (139), animal homes (56), animals (284), ecology (99), habitats (86), zoology (7)

In the Classroom

Capture kids' interest in biology, zoology, and ecology with Wild Kratts. Joining in adventures with the gang, allows students to learn about animals, habitats, and the planet. Use this site as a resource in science. Share the videos and/or interactives on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Add the site as an enrichment area for everyone to explore. Use the adventures to inspire either narrative or expository writing. Use as a technology resource for digging in deeper for your common core content area. With using your avatar, students can experience and make connections with each of the animals given. ENL/ELL and learning support students will find this site useful with reading, video, and demonstrations of the different featured animals. Your science club will enjoy the experiences of the Wild Kratts. Using the area you live in, have students work in groups to study the animals, birds, reptiles, fish, and arthropods. Create a wiki with the research of your area. Or have students create their own blogs highlighting what they have learned. If you are beginning the process of integrating technology, exchange paper and pen and have students create blogs sharing their learning and understanding using Webnode, reviewed here. If you are teaching younger students and looking for an easy way to integrate technology and check for understanding, replace pencil and paper and challenge your students to create a blog using Edublog, reviewed here. Share your research and stories with other classes in your own school, students' families, and more.
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Fakebook - Class Tools

Grades
4 to 12
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Create a "fake" Facebook-style page for anyone or anything! It's a good idea to do a little planning ahead of time, then just follow the directions on the landing page. ...more
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Create a "fake" Facebook-style page for anyone or anything! It's a good idea to do a little planning ahead of time, then just follow the directions on the landing page. Give your page a name and add an image from your computer. (They insert an image for you if you do not select one, however, you can change the image by clicking on it and selecting one from your computer.) Of course you will need to use a Creative Commons or other copyright-safe image. You can also add videos and links, edit the profile, and your page is almost ready. You must add at least one post and one friend to save work. Under the "Friends" block, you can add blocks such as Family, Major Speeches, etc. Choose "save" from the options on top left side of the page, enter a password, and your unique URL for your Fakebook page appears. Be sure to copy and save this link as it is the only time it is given in the setup process. If you are prepared with images and links, page creation is quick and easy with a small learning curve. Share your Fakebook page with the link to your page.
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tag(s): back to school (63), book reports (28), creative writing (119), digital storytelling (144), firstday (22), social networking (65)

In the Classroom

Engage and create interest in classroom learning with Fakebook. Fakebook is terrific for creating interest in many subjects. Instead of a typical biographical report in social studies, students create a Fakebook page about their famous person. Write about presidents, founding fathers, famous scientists or artists, Civil War soldiers, and more. Have students create a timeline of any historical event (name the page for the event, such as World War II). Use Fakebook to outline a book, play, or film plot, then share with students while studying the material. To use Fakebook to study literature, create a page for the central character, the book's author, or the book's setting. For a unique twist in science class, create a Fakebook page for a periodic element or another science topic. Use the page to describe "the life" of that atom or element. In world language classes, have students do this activity (about themselves) in the second language they are learning. Create a Fakebook page for the first day of school to introduce yourself to students or at Open House for parents. Challenge students to create and share a page about themselves during the first week of school. Share a Fakebook page with students to demonstrate proper netiquette and social sharing. Be sure to share a rubric with students for all expectations of what should be included on their page. Make Fakebook one of the options for your gifted students doing projects beyond the regular curriculum. With no membership required, this tool is simple enough for younger gifted students with parent permission to post work to the web.

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inklewriter - Joseph Humfrey and Jon Ingold

Grades
4 to 12
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Create interactive, choose your own adventure (branching) style stories with inklewriter. This site is ideal for anyone to create a story and then share with others via a unique URL....more
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Create interactive, choose your own adventure (branching) style stories with inklewriter. This site is ideal for anyone to create a story and then share with others via a unique URL. These stories allow for others to create their own path or choose an existing one. Begin by choosing to read stories or create your own. Type parts of the story including the title, author, beginning, introduction, and add sections as needed. After each paragraph is the option to create different outcomes of the story, offering choices the reader makes. The site contains excellent tutorials for getting started with stories. When finished, share the URL for your story using Twitter or Facebook or copy the URL to share and bookmark as you wish. Of course, your "story" need not be fiction! You could also write an opinion piece with branches for people to ask (click) on questions about facets of your argument! NOTE: When you click to begin writing, you should click SIGN IN and choose to make a new account. Do this before you start writing in order to be able to save. The tool will then save your work as you go along. Although you do not HAVE to sign in before you start, it is risky to sign up later! . Inklewriter has also made it easier for teachers to sign up students WITHOUT student email addresses. Read the directions about how to do this on the landing page by scrolling down and finding "Sign-up and email addresses."
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tag(s): creative writing (119), digital storytelling (144), narrative (14), persuasive writing (55)

In the Classroom

View stories on the site together to understand the components of the site and discuss how different choices in characters and settings lead to different story outcomes. (Be sure to preview stories before sharing, since there is "public"' content.) Watch the tutorials together on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) before students begin to write stories. Use a graphic organizer to "map out" the story before writing. Create a short story together as a class to become familiar using the site. Assign a group of students to create an interactive story each week to share on your classroom website or blog. Have students create a story map before beginning a story on inklewriter; use a tool such as 25 Language Arts Graphic Organizers, reviewed here. Create class stories to teach about literature, geography, reading comprehension, history, science concepts, and more. As a more "serious" approach, use Inklewriter to present opinion pieces where you take a position and allow readers to click on questions about it. They could also click on statements expressing opposing views so you can write counterarguments to their points. This could end up being a powerful way to present an argument and evidence as required by Common Core writing standards. A graphic organizer for planning and organizing evidence is a must! Teachers of gifted could use this for students to develop elaborate fictional or informational pieces. If you work with students who struggle, scaffold with a template for them to organize their thoughts.

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Talk Typer - 2012 TalkTyper

Grades
K to 12
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Your spoken words are instantly changed to written text. Just click on the microphone and speak. Follow simple directions and immediately begin to dictate. As soon as speech is ready,...more
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Your spoken words are instantly changed to written text. Just click on the microphone and speak. Follow simple directions and immediately begin to dictate. As soon as speech is ready, it appears in red, and you push ok. Corrections are suggested in red. If your speech is not recognized, there is an alternatives button to help you dictate correctly. You can also click on the speaker button to hear the written words played back to you. Click the blue arrow to move the text down to the larger text box. There you can store several phrases or sentences together. Choose to print, email, or tweet your message. Talk Typer is also available in a variety of languages. Be sure to speak slowly and clearly. This is best used with short phrases or sentences.
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tag(s): communication (133), differentiation (85), note taking (35), speech (66), writing (318)

In the Classroom

Talk Typer is a very versatile tool, for students, parents, and teachers alike. Bypass poor typing skills, dysgraphia, dyslexia, and physical disabilities. Use this tool in emails, documents, or anything requiring typed text. Use in your writing class so students can either write or edit their work. Use when you are in a hurry with emails requiring long text. Use for your newsletters or family emails. Share this on your class website and at Back to School Night. Emerging literacy students will enjoy the success they have with their oral language into written word. Improve content and forget about mechanics of writing or typing. Focus in on grammar and mechanics after seeing the recognized mistakes. Include this website on every tool bar and as a favorite on your class web page. ELL students can speak English, play it back, and correct it until it "sounds right" and expresses their ideas correctly.

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Playfic - Andy Baio and Cooper McHatton

Grades
4 to 12
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Create interactive, text-based games with this simple tool. Perhaps you remember a text-based game called "Adventure" from back in the early days of computers. Be sure to use the tutorial...more
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Create interactive, text-based games with this simple tool. Perhaps you remember a text-based game called "Adventure" from back in the early days of computers. Be sure to use the tutorial on the home page that also teaches you how to navigate the stories themselves. By clicking on the "About Us," you can view the "cheat sheet" that will certainly make your first creative attempt at Playfic more enjoyable. Experiment with Playfic games created by others and time yourself. if you get stuck, you can look at the source code. Create your own Playfic for any topic that interests you, whether it's fiction or not. Note that there is no moderation on games created by others, so preview before sharing with young people.

tag(s): creative writing (119), creativity (90), digital storytelling (144), gamification (76), mysteries (21), puzzles (143)

In the Classroom

"Gamification" of learning is a hot topic in 21st century learning. Use this simple tool to make it happen. Use for any digital storytelling: fact or fiction. In social studies, have students create an interactive game based on life during the Depression or any historic era. Have them create a "Where in the world is ..." for geography. World language students could make a simple game (in the language they are studying) about daily life. Gifted students will love creating games on their favorite topics, so make this a research-and-create-a-game approach for independent projects. Science students could make a game about what might happen in certain weather or life as a fossil. Have your language arts students create mystery or survival stories or even a different ending to a story you've read together. Warning: all stories are PUBLIC and your students will be able to view other's stories. You'll either want to have a class account or monitor this closely.

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Drama in the ESL Classroom - Jessica Davis

Grades
2 to 12
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Find a wealth of resources for using drama in the ESL/ELL classroom. The same activities can also be useful for other subjects. The improvisation resources are especially exciting,...more
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Find a wealth of resources for using drama in the ESL/ELL classroom. The same activities can also be useful for other subjects. The improvisation resources are especially exciting, offering definitions, examples of activities, links, and visual examples of how you can use improvisational techniques. In addition, information and activities on using plays, process drama, and reader's theater for language teaching abound. Use play writing for another aspect of language teaching. There is a complete curriculum for offering an independent class in drama for ESL/ELL students. Although this site may appear plain vanilla, there are sprinkles throughout, making this tool very valuable and informative.

tag(s): acting (18), creative writing (119), plays (27)

In the Classroom

Use this site as the starting point for group projects like having the students write and produce their own play(s). This is a great find for gifted students as well as students studying any modern language as the play writing and acting techniques can easily be adapted. Challenge cooperative learning groups to create videos of the plays they write and produce then edit and save them using using wevideo, reviewed here. Share the videos on a site such as TeacherTube reviewed here.

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Catch the Science Bug - Catch the Science Bug Foundation, Inc

Grades
2 to 6
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Solve science puzzles, do scientific investigations, or learn more about what scientists do on the job with this lively and entertaining site. Based on the PBS science series of the...more
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Solve science puzzles, do scientific investigations, or learn more about what scientists do on the job with this lively and entertaining site. Based on the PBS science series of the same name, the goal of this site is to get children, especially girls and minorities, excited about science. Choose from different components of the site such as the Science Files. Here you will find adventures include engineering enigmas, great pumpkins, and several other topics. Topics include a short explanation, video, and several activities including worksheets with investigation logs. Scibug Investigators offers several activities to complete in your backyard. View videos and read about scientists connected with the series. Be sure to check out the Reading Bug link with an extensive list of books listed by topic. There is a teacher's guide for the site but it is a little hard to find. Go to the About Us section. Scroll down to Parents and Teachers. Here you will find links to the teacher's guide with a complete list of activities included on the site along with a short description, topics taught, and topics activities can supplement.

tag(s): animals (284), birds (45), data (148), engineering (120), environment (238), plants (147), solar energy (34), trees (18), water (101)

In the Classroom

Although the standards listed are for grades K-4, much of the material has far higher reading levels. View videos on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) as a class when introducing a science unit. Then complete activities provided on the site. The text passages on this site are at upper elementary to middle school level, so you may need to read them aloud or have weaker and stronger readers work together. The visual materials are quite useful for elementary and up. View videos and read biographies of the scientists during a career unit. Share this site as a resource for fun science activities to do at home and with gifted students for self-exploration. Add this to your list of recommended sites to prevent "summer slide." The teacher's guide on the site is an excellent resource for finding activities. Bookmark this on your computer or print and include in your lesson planning guide to use when planning lessons and units. Choose books from the reading list to include with guided reading instruction. For more science reading selections, check out TeachersFirst's CurriConnects lists for various science topics.
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Let's Play Math! - letsplaymath.net

Grades
K to 12
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Let's Play Math! is a blog by a homeschooling mom that shares resources, ideas, and an excitement for teaching mathematics to all students. Find popular posts on the right-hand toolbar...more
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Let's Play Math! is a blog by a homeschooling mom that shares resources, ideas, and an excitement for teaching mathematics to all students. Find popular posts on the right-hand toolbar or browse by topic tag. Topics with the most entries are highlighted and in a larger font making them easier to find. Search within the blog using the search box included. You may also want to check out the link to the Best of the Blog. This includes some of the author's favorite posts sorted by subject and includes favorite games, puzzles, activities, and more. Although this blog was designed by a homeschooling parent, the information is useful in any math classroom setting.
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tag(s): mental math (18), preK (259), puzzles (143)

In the Classroom

Bookmark this blog to use as a resource for classroom lessons and activities. Subscribe to the blog or "like" the Facebook page to be notified when new posts appear. Share this link on your class website for students and parents to use at home.

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