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National Cowboy Museum - National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum

Grades
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 (81), artists (81), native americans (80), westward expansion (31)

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 students research and discuss other artwork depicting American expansion, ask them to use Padlet, reviewed here, to organize and curate their saved resources. Ask 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.
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OK2Ask: Resource Roundup: Free Tools from the Edge - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session from June 2018, opens in Adobe Connect. Looking for new tech tools to use? Go to the Cutting Edge with TeachersFirst!...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session from June 2018, opens in Adobe Connect. Looking for new tech tools to use? Go to the Cutting Edge with TeachersFirst! Discover tools you and your students can use to create images, timelines, whiteboards, mind maps, and more. Learn how this collection is categorized so you can explore the Edge on your own. Find inspiration and timesaving tools in this fast-paced session while learning classroom applications for these tools. Participants will: 1. Explore the Edge categories and tools available at TeachersFirst; 2. Prepare to plan and implement a student-centered, curriculum-related use of the resource(s) of choice as part of an upcoming teaching unit; and 3. Plan how to use one of the Edge tools for digital storytelling, communication, or creating study tools for your classroom. This session is appropriate for teachers at all technology levels.

tag(s): DAT device agnostic tool (179)

In the Classroom

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

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National Geographic Education - National Geographic

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K to 12
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Explore the many resources shared by National Geographic at their home base created for educators. Monthly features highlight and share information related to current events. Select...more
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Explore the many resources shared by National Geographic at their home base created for educators. Monthly features highlight and share information related to current events. Select the "Teaching Resources" link to find ideas, activities, lessons, and units all searchable by grade and topic. Also, this section includes educational games and teacher guides. Choose the "Reference" link to find news and media information from the past plus current events. Be sure also to visit the "Mapping" section to find printable maps, mapmaking kits, and interactive maps.

tag(s): animal homes (63), biodiversity (35), climate (94), climate change (69), democracy (14), energy (209), habitats (108), map skills (80), native americans (80), oceans (164), planets (129), preK (286), space (225), stars (68), women (96)

In the Classroom

Bookmark and include the National Geographic site with your resources for planning social studies and science lessons. Share resources from the site on your interactive whiteboard then include a link on classroom computers for students to explore independently. There are many interesting articles and activities for students. Ask them to choose one and have them use an online notetaking tool like Webnote, reviewed here, to take notes or write questions as they research information online. Ask students to write blogs sharing information learned using a site like Easyblog, reviewed here. Easyblog offers tools for creating class and individual blogs.

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OK2Ask: Tech Integration Made Easy with Flipgrid - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session from May 2018, opens in Adobe Connect. Input and expertise from peers can help students learn and grow. Learn to use...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session from May 2018, opens in Adobe Connect. Input and expertise from peers can help students learn and grow. Learn to use Flipgrid, a video discussion platform, to increase student voice in your classroom. This tech tool can enhance social learning through sharing short videos centered around a topic. Getting started is easy, and after this session, you will be ready to use Flipgrid to encourage every student to share what they know. Participants will: 1. Learn to create a basic classroom Flipgrid; 2. Understand ways to use Flipgrid to increase student voice in the classroom; and 3. Plan for the use of Flipgrid in the classroom. This session is appropriate for teachers at all technology levels.

tag(s): assessment (116)

In the Classroom

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

Grades
3 to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session from March 2018, opens in Adobe Connect. Effective formative assessment can improve student learning. Explore how the...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session from March 2018, opens in Adobe Connect. Effective formative assessment can improve student learning. Explore how the use of infographics as a formative assessment strategy can both engage students and improve learning. This workshop will help you understand what infographics are, what makes them effective, and how powerful they can be when infused into content-area instruction. Infographic creation requires the application of a range of critical skills, such as synthesis, analysis, organization, and creativity. In order to summarize and convey information correctly, clearly, and concisely, students must understand the material and their audience. Join us and learn how to get started using infographics for formative assessment. Participants will: 1. Understand what infographics are and the elements that make them effective; 2. Explore strategies for using infographics to gather evidence of student progress; and 3. Plan for student use of infographics as formative assessment. This session is appropriate for teachers at all technology levels.

tag(s): infographics (51)

In the Classroom

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

Grades
K to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session from February 2018, opens in Adobe Connect. Making a learning environment accessible for everyone is critical to a successful...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session from February 2018, opens in Adobe Connect. Making a learning environment accessible for everyone is critical to a successful inclusive classroom. Today's classrooms are diverse and include English Language Learners and students with learning challenges, whether they have been identified or not. Every teacher needs to be able to create and deliver content in a way that is accessible to each student. Fortunately, teachers already have free technologies at their disposal to assist with this. Join us as we explore strategies and tools that facilitate an inclusive learning environment. Participants will: 1. Understand the importance of accessibility; 2. Explore Microsoft tools that can be used to create accessible materials; and 3. Identify an easy new habit, hack, and/or tool they can adopt to help make the material accessible for their students. This session is appropriate for teachers at all technology levels.

tag(s): Accessibility (2), differentiation (45), Microsoft (37), Special Needs (33)

In the Classroom

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

Grades
K to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session from January 2018, opens in Adobe Connect. Inspire technology integrated lessons for student learning based on web-based...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session from January 2018, opens in Adobe Connect. Inspire technology integrated lessons for student learning based on web-based resources. Learn about the features and benefits of your free TeachersFirst membership. This session will briefly share how to find and use resources on TeachersFirst to help you save time. Remember, it is OK2Ask questions at any time! Participants will: 1. Explore TeachersFirst membership features; 2. Identify and share resources to support classroom instruction; and 3. Prepare to use the features of TeachersFirst membership to maximize student learning. This session is appropriate for teachers at all technology levels.

In the Classroom

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

Grades
K to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session from November 2017, opens in Adobe Connect. Transform your classroom activities by learning how to use Sutori. Engage...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session from November 2017, opens in Adobe Connect. Transform your classroom activities by learning how to use Sutori. Engage students and deepen content area knowledge through digital stories. Text, audio, video, discussion forums, and quiz questions bring additional context to content area instruction for your students. Use student-created visual stories and timelines as formative assessment. Brainstorm with others how you and your students can use Sutori in your classroom. Participants will: 1. Learn basic use of Sutori; 2. Explore three different ways to use Sutori in the classroom; and 3. Plan for the use of Sutori in the classroom. This session is appropriate for teachers at all technology levels.

tag(s): digital storytelling (153), timelines (57)

In the Classroom

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

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OK2Ask: Google Earth Web: Oh the Places You Can Go - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session from October 2017, opens in Adobe Connect. Dust off your digital passport and join us on a journey using the new ...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session from October 2017, opens in Adobe Connect. Dust off your digital passport and join us on a journey using the new Google Earth web. Learn the key features of Google Earth web and how to incorporate this powerful tool into your classroom instruction. The reimagined version of Google Earth includes features that go beyond the use of maps and satellite imagery. Users can now explore the world with Voyager, Google Earth's showcase of guided tours, and try out the 3D button to view places from any angle. Leave with classroom ideas and lesson planning resources. Participants will: 1. Get acquainted with the key features of Google Earth web; 2. Explore interactive guided tours with Voyager; and 3. Start building your own Tour for Google Earth web. This session is appropriate for teachers at all technology levels.

tag(s): Google (27)

In the Classroom

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

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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. View this archive to learn tips and tools to use when teaching social studies. Find ideas about how to incorporate more social ...more
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This archived Twitter chat is from May 2017. 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 (161), twitterchatarchive (41)

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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Students Investigating Primary Sources - Florida Joint Center for Citizenship

Grades
2 to 12
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Students Investigating Primary Sources is a series of lessons designed through a collaboration with the National Archives, Pinellas County Public Schools, and Brevard Public Schools...more
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Students Investigating Primary Sources is a series of lessons designed through a collaboration with the National Archives, Pinellas County Public Schools, and Brevard Public Schools for 2nd grade through High School Students. Choose from topics including separation of power and women's right to vote. Each lesson correlates to National Standards and a PDF link to the original activity including vocabulary, handouts, and other necessary materials.

tag(s): branches of government (51), civil rights (119), constitution (88), primary sources (93), womens suffrage (25)

In the Classroom

Benefit from the free lessons on this site for use when teaching the use of primary sources. Challenge younger students to demonstrate concepts learned by creating a presentation using slides, reviewed here, and older students to use a presentation tool from Lucidpress, reviewed here. The easy drag and drop features of Lucidpress allow you to personalize flyers, posters, presentations, and more. Ask students to incorporate primary sources and other research materials into an interactive timeline using Timeglider, reviewed here, as a visual look at historical events over a certain period.
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Hold the Fort! - National Park Service, Fort McHenry

Grades
4 to 10
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Take charge of Fort McHenry during the Battle of Baltimore and save the fort from the British bombardment with this interactive. After an introduction to the situation, players prepare...more
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Take charge of Fort McHenry during the Battle of Baltimore and save the fort from the British bombardment with this interactive. After an introduction to the situation, players prepare for battle and manage resources to save the fort. Your goal is to keep the American flag flying at all times. Registration isn't required; however, it allows players to save their game at the end of each round. Total time to complete is 35-45 minutes.

tag(s): battles (20), game based learning (137), war of 1812 (15)

In the Classroom

This interactive requires the installation of the Unity Web Player, be sure to verify set up before students play the game. Create a link on classroom computers for students to play on their own or in groups. Have cooperative learning groups create podcasts describing events leading up to and during the Battle of Baltimore as if broadcasting a news event. Use a site such as podOmatic, reviewed here. Challenge students to create a fictional Twitter account (with bio and known associates) using the Twitter Fictional Account Template, reviewed here, or use Fakebook, reviewed here, to create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook about a soldier, commander, or British soldier during the battle.

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The Stock Market Game - Securities Industry and Financial Markets Assoc Foundation

Grades
4 to 12
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Using hands-on lessons, students work in teams to learn the basics of investing, create $100,000 portfolios, manage an investment portfolio in a real-world scenario of a dynamic marketplace,...more
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Using hands-on lessons, students work in teams to learn the basics of investing, create $100,000 portfolios, manage an investment portfolio in a real-world scenario of a dynamic marketplace, learn other economic concepts, and compete against teams across the globe while fostering teamwork and decision-making skills. Created in 1977 by the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association Foundation, The Stock Market Game (SMG) is an online simulation game for teaching students about the global capital markets and stock market. Teachers must register for their school and students and then will receive essential information on program requirements and important dates. Adults are welcome to play after registering. SMG is coordinated locally by non-profit partners dedicated to youth financial literacy who volunteer when help is needed. Each year 600,000 students participate around the world in exciting collaborative activities.

tag(s): business (59), game based learning (137), investing (8), money (187), stock market (14)

In the Classroom

Participants who register as "Teachers with Classes" receive extensive teacher support, including a searchable library of standards, curriculum materials, and assessments. While providing real-world practice, SMG engages students in the core academic subjects, such as math, English, and economics. Lesson plans include Teacher Background and materials to implement the lesson with students. Find more information by perusing additional publications, links, and other resources. Contact a local SMG Coordinator for additional assistance. Use the game in individual classes, school-wide, in after school clubs, or with home-schoolers. Families can play at home together or collaborate with others. Additional benefits include higher math and financial literacy scores on tests by students who play SMG. Also, teachers report that the program even taught them about financial planning, research, and investing wisely.

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iCivics, Win the White House - iCivics

Grades
4 to 12
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Make the presidential election process personal. Run for U.S. president by playing this free interactive online game which is best played on a computer using most current browsers....more
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Make the presidential election process personal. Run for U.S. president by playing this free interactive online game which is best played on a computer using most current browsers. In this lively, colorful simulation, students will experience being part of a campaign, including creating a candidate avatar, selecting either Democratic or Republican issues, participating in debates and developing a media campaign. Choose your level to start: elementary, middle, or high school and complete the easy-to-follow tasks which do involve some reading, especially the debates section. The "Campaign Manager" will lead you through the process ending with your final probability of winning. Loading the game may take a few moments. Sound begins immediately, but may be toggled off. Online assistance is available by clicking the Help button in the top right corner at each step of the game. Also, the Back button in the top left corner allows easy do-overs of sections. Students may play without registering, but will access more content, compete with others and earn badges after logging in. You can have separate accounts for students and teachers, but must have email addresses. An automatic username is generated when registering. The easy to use Extension Pack for Teachers provides more activities and assessments. Registered teachers can message students and create classes to give students a virtual class code to join without needing an email. If students register, they can check their My iCivics accounts to see points and message members of their groups which can be controlled by the teacher.

tag(s): elections (73), presidents (123)

In the Classroom

Start out using this site with your projector or interactive whiteboard with the whole class. Walk through the beginning of the game and demonstrate the built-in help which is useful for students who might need additional guidance. Have individuals play or create small group teams of campaign staff to guide the candidates. Students or groups may play multiple times. After registering, the site will save games and students can send messages. Use the Achievements badges and points for student assessments. Have students research the debate topics and compare the different aspects of the game to real-life examples in the news. An easy to use Extension Pack for Teachers provides more activities and assessments.
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Does Your Vote Count? The Electoral College Explained - Christina Greer

Grades
4 to 12
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Many students (and adults) don't fully understand the role of the Electoral College in presidential elections. Does Your Vote Count? is a YouTube video providing a clear explanation...more
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Many students (and adults) don't fully understand the role of the Electoral College in presidential elections. Does Your Vote Count? is a YouTube video providing a clear explanation of the Electoral College and how it works as part of the election process. 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): elections (73), electoral college (15)

In the Classroom

Share this video on an interactive whiteboard (or projector) as part of any election unit. Have students research the number of electoral votes available in your state. Use an online tool such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram, reviewed here, to compare the democratic process in the United States to that of another country. Have students create maps using Animaps, reviewed here, to identify the number of electoral votes available in each state. Students can add text, images, and additional information such as how the electoral votes were cast in previous elections.

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GeoInquiries - ESRI

Grades
4 to 12
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GeoInquiries offers standards-based collections for teaching map-based concepts. Choose from several different content topics such as Earth Science, US History, and more. Locate the...more
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GeoInquiries offers standards-based collections for teaching map-based concepts. Choose from several different content topics such as Earth Science, US History, and more. Locate the complete list of available collections on the left side of the homepage. After choosing a broad topic, select a specific activity, then click to open the PDF for easy access to content. In addition to the GeoInquiries, this site also includes several additional lengthier activities including all necessary teacher and student materials.

tag(s): agriculture (60), american revolution (85), civil war (144), climate change (69), cold war (30), demographics (19), earthquakes (50), landforms (49), maps (294), minerals (18), oceans (164), population (67), rocks (52), volcanoes (68), weather (201), world war 1 (55)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of the free lessons offered on GeoInquiries for use in your classroom. Divide students into groups to participate in different activities or use as enrichment for gifted students to complete independently. When finished with your inquiries, challenge students to create a presentation using Prezi, reviewed here, demonstrating information learned.
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Smithsonian Learning Lab - The Smithsonian Center for Learning and Digital Access

Grades
4 to 12
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Discover, create, and share digital resources from the Smithsonian Museum, the National Zoo, and nine major research centers with this visually appealing site. Use the search feature...more
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Discover, create, and share digital resources from the Smithsonian Museum, the National Zoo, and nine major research centers with this visually appealing site. Use the search feature to find digital resources including photos, recordings, videos, and text. Sign up to create your own collections, including those found on the site and your own resources. Add annotations and develop quizzes. Easily share your creations or curated collections using social networking links provided. If your district blocks YouTube, the videos may not be viewable. You could always view them 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): animals (322), architecture (85), art history (81), aviation (35), black history (57), civil war (144), dinosaurs (54), explorers (68), images (285), inventors and inventions (90), scientists (69)

In the Classroom

The Smithsonian Learning Lab is a must-add to your list of classroom bookmarks! Search for collections and information throughout the year on all topics. Add a link to classroom computers for the entire site or specific collections. Be sure to take advantage of the many features of this site to create customized collections, then have students add additional resources. Have students create quizzes for review of topics. Challenge students to create a simple infographic sharing their findings using Easel.ly, reviewed here.

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Newsela - Students Vote 2016 - Matthew Gross

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4 to 12
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Create informed citizens and voters with Newsela's Student's Vote 2016. At their reading level, students learn about the candidates and vote in the "student primary." Newsela publishes...more
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Create informed citizens and voters with Newsela's Student's Vote 2016. At their reading level, students learn about the candidates and vote in the "student primary." Newsela publishes high-interest news articles, from the best news sources, at five reading levels. See the TeachersFirst review here.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): elections (73), news (260), newspapers (98), reading comprehension (126)

In the Classroom

If you haven't already, sign up for Newsela and create your class. Add students by using a teacher (or parent) provided code rather than an email address. Go to the Election Text Sets and assign reading-level specific articles to individual students, or download printable PDF copies of the article in any of its reading level versions. Be sure to set up a time for your students to vote on election day.

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PBS Election Central - PBS Learning Media

Grades
3 to 12
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Stay up to date with current elections and learn about the electoral process with this all-inclusive site from PBS Learning. Take virtual field trips to the floor of Congress and ...more
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Stay up to date with current elections and learn about the electoral process with this all-inclusive site from PBS Learning. Take virtual field trips to the floor of Congress and Presidential Libraries to explore historical themes. Follow the election process with the interactive map to track candidates as they campaign across the country. Other content examines the election process and takes an inside look at the debates. Be sure to check out the Election Collection containing several activities such as Inside the Voting Booth and You're the Campaign Manager.

tag(s): debate (46), elections (73), electoral college (15), presidents (123), speech (87)

In the Classroom

Include Election Central as part of any election unit. Have students research candidate information and compare and contrast points of view. Use an online tool such as the Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram, reviewed here, or the Interactive Three Circle Venn Diagram, reviewed here. Pose a controversial question about an election issue and have students answer as one of the candidates. Use a tool such as WeJIT, reviewed here, for that exercise. Or, challenge students to use Fakebook, reviewed here, to create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook about a candidate's journey through the election process. Or, using Fakebook, have two candidates debate an issue. Be sure to take advantage of the free lesson plans offered on this site correlated to National History Standards.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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TPS Teachers Network - Metropolitan State University of Denver

Grades
K to 12
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TPS Teachers Network is a social networking site for social studies and history teachers. The Library of Congress funded this as part of their Teaching With Primary Sources Program....more
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TPS Teachers Network is a social networking site for social studies and history teachers. The Library of Congress funded this as part of their Teaching With Primary Sources Program. Create an account to begin using features on the site (email and password required). Once enrolled, options include participating in a chat, adding friends, and searching using keywords. Use the tag cloud on the main page to find specific information by grade level or topics such as primary source sets. Create albums on the site, including primary and secondary sources, to easily share with students or fellow teachers. Be sure to check out the Help section at the bottom of the page when you first get started for Quick Tip Tutorials to make the most of the site. If your district blocks YouTube, the videos may not be viewable. You could always view them at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as Online-Convert, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): bookmarks (67), primary sources (93), professional development (161), social networking (111)

In the Classroom

Bookmark and save TPS Teachers Network as an excellent professional development and social networking site. Share with your colleagues to create your own professional learning network on the site. Create albums with primary sources for use throughout the year in one easy to find location.

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