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Year-End Roundup, 2016-2017: Questions for Writing and Discussion - New York Times/The Learning Network

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7 to 12
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The Year-End Roundup includes 179 questions asked by the New York Times Learning Network between September 2016 and June 2017. Each prompt promotes discussion on current events appropriate...more
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The Year-End Roundup includes 179 questions asked by the New York Times Learning Network between September 2016 and June 2017. Each prompt promotes discussion on current events appropriate for students 13 years and older. Choose the link to any question to read a short article with background information and suggested points to consider. Download the complete list in a PDF form for easy reference; however, this form doesn't include links to the articles and additional information.

tag(s): debate (37), persuasive writing (51), process writing (39), writers workshop (32), writing (282)

In the Classroom

Bookmark and save this site as a resource for writing prompts, current events discussions, or as a springboard to debate topics. Before writing, encourage students to research their topic and take notes. Use an online note-taking site like Google Keep, reviewed here, to save and share notes. Have students share their completed projects in a blog and ask for feedback from their peers using Telegra.ph, reviewed here. There is no registration with Telegra.ph and you just click on an icon to upload images from your computer, add a YouTube or Vimeo, or Twitter links. Take completed writing projects one step further and ask students to create a Story Map, reviewed here. Story Map offers the ability to tell a story through interactive maps including video, images, and more.
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The Library of Congress Flickr Albums - Library of Congress

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6 to 12
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Stroll through time with the many Flickr photo albums containing images provided by the Library of Congress. Sorted by topics, pictures include subjects such as Civil War Faces and...more
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Stroll through time with the many Flickr photo albums containing images provided by the Library of Congress. Sorted by topics, pictures include subjects such as Civil War Faces and Baseball Americana. Choose any album for a first-hand look at America's past.

tag(s): 1900s (50), aeronautics (9), baseball (31), bridges (11), civil rights (149), civil war (125), gettysburg (17), images (254), jazz (10), lincoln (57), world war 1 (58), world war 2 (133)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of the many photographs included on this site for use as primary sources for lessons on American History. The site's settings allow for sharing and download of images. When sharing, be sure to follow guidelines for correct attribution of sources. Use any album from the site as an anticipatory set or "activator" to introduce a unit or lesson on a projector or interactive whiteboard. Have students create an annotated image telling the story of the time including text boxes and related links using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here.

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Timeline Eons - Maani.us

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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 (80), DAT device agnostic tool (167), geologic time (9), space (201), 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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Imperial War Museums - IWM

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7 to 12
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The Imperial War Museums are a family of five museums in the United Kingdom with a focus on conflicts from World War I through current times. The War and Conflict ...more
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The Imperial War Museums are a family of five museums in the United Kingdom with a focus on conflicts from World War I through current times. The War and Conflict portion of the site contains many resources for teaching and learning about wars through quick reads, photo, and video stories. Choose any war to browse through information and images. Be sure to check out the Learning Resources that includes teaching suggestions and PowerPoint downloads. The site was created in the UK, so some of the pronunciations and spellings may differ from those in American English.

tag(s): afghanistan (6), churchill (7), cold war (23), d day (7), holocaust (38), world war 1 (58), world war 2 (133)

In the Classroom

Discover the many ready-to-go, free resources on this site as you teach about wars and conflict. Use this information to compare and contrast British involvement in conflicts vs. those in your country. Have students create an annotated image including text boxes and related links using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here, to describe images taken during wartime. Create a class wiki about the conflict you are studying. Not comfortable with wikis? Check out the TeachersFirst Wiki Walk-Through.
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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 (253), twitterchatarchive (115)

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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OneHistory - Hilary Mac Austin and Kathleen Thompson

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6 to 12
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OneHistory uses stories, images, biographies, editorials, and essays to tell the history of America through the diversity of its people. Use links on the site to view information through...more
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OneHistory uses stories, images, biographies, editorials, and essays to tell the history of America through the diversity of its people. Use links on the site to view information through reading history and visual history. Be sure to check out the teacher feature index containing tips for teaching through photographs and links to great speeches and documents.

tag(s): 1800s (55), 1900s (50), african american (92), biographies (86), cross cultural understanding (143), essays (19), great depression (23), primary sources (96), speeches (18)

In the Classroom

Bookmark OneHistory as a resource for primary sources when teaching American History and as an excellent tool for finding information featuring diversity throughout the years. Have students create a multimedia presentation using Slidestory, reviewed here. This site allows you to narrate a picture. Challenge students to find a photo (legally permitted to be reproduced), and then add music to their narration. Slidestory allows you to add narration to a picture. Challenge students to find a photo (legally permitted to be reproduced), and then narrate the photo as if it is a news report. Take advantage of the high interest, low readability level stories on the site to differentiate for the variety of reading levels in your classroom and to include informational (nonfiction) reading standards.

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Founding Principles: American Governance in Action - Bowdoin College

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6 to 12
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American Governance in Action is a 15 chapter video series providing an overview of the fundamental tenets of the American Government. Videos run approximately 15 minutes or less, and...more
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American Governance in Action is a 15 chapter video series providing an overview of the fundamental tenets of the American Government. Videos run approximately 15 minutes or less, and the narration by Andrew Rudalevige, a professor at Bowdoin College, is easy to understand. Each video also includes a transcript; use the search box to find and highlight terms discovered in the narrative.

tag(s): branches of government (56), civil rights (149), congress (37), constitution (88), elections (75), electoral college (18), presidents (116), supreme court (23)

In the Classroom

Watch videos together as a class, or flip your class and have students watch at home before introducing lessons on the government in class. Allow students to watch videos at their own pace on 1:1 devices or at home, then create a simple infographic sharing their findings using Infogram, reviewed here. Challenge cooperative learning groups to create podcasts demonstrating their understanding of one of the concepts of American Governance. Use a site such as podOmatic, reviewed here.

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Stumped!? Decoding Elections - NewseumEd

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6 to 12
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Don't shy away from teaching about the elections because of all the nastiness and confusion. Instead get help from NewseumEd's latest Collection: Election 2016: Stumped!? Study the...more
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Don't shy away from teaching about the elections because of all the nastiness and confusion. Instead get help from NewseumEd's latest Collection: Election 2016: Stumped!? Study the historical conditions and circumstances of controversial political campaigns to gain an understanding of today's campaign tactics and messages. Go back as far as the 1880s to learn about mudslinging and nasty accusations in the election and where and when nasty ads got their start. This NewseumEd Collection approaches understanding by using primary sources and case studies (use the drop down menu for Education Collection). The case studies start at the very beginning of an election and go right through to the end. They all include lesson plans with an issue summary, debate question, tools for organizing evidence for the discussions, election essentials, primary sources, guiding questions, and an extension activity. Optional resources for some of the case studies include NewseumEd's Pinterest pages (links provided with those Case Studies). To get started there are a few helpful interactives to go with this Collection: the Political Personality Quiz, Candidate Match, and Predict the Election. Registration with NewseumEd is necessary to access all sources, but is entirely free.

tag(s): democracy (15), elections (75), presidents (116), primary sources (96)

In the Classroom

Whether the nation or your local government is going through an unpleasant, combative election campaign, or even during a yearly unit on the elections this collection from Newseum will help students understand our political system. Pique student interest by having them take the Political Personality Quiz. In small groups have students discuss whether or not they agree with the results. Next, you may want to use the Candidate Match to refine their political profile further, and then discuss how they feel about the candidate they matched up with and why they feel that way. While using any or all of the case studies with your students, don't forget to download the Activity, Handout, and Worksheet. All of the case studies have discussion topics.

All students need to have a voice during discussions, whether discussing as a class or in small groups, allow everyone to share their opinions and concerns using a backchannel tool for the class such as GoSoapBox, reviewed here, or with older students, in small groups, using a tool like Slack, reviewed here. Extension activities encompass making charts, lists, (use tools like 25 Language Arts Graphic Organizers, reviewed here, or Holt Interactive Graphic Organizers, reviewed here), researching a candidate creating a slogan and explaining why the slogan fits that candidate, and creating a campaign event. For the latter two extension suggestions use a tool such as Adobe Spark for Education, reviewed here.

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Students Investigating Primary Sources - Florida Joint Center for Citizenship

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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 (56), civil rights (149), constitution (88), primary sources (96), womens suffrage (31)

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 Preceden, 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

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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 (18), game based learning (156), war of 1812 (13)

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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Of the People: Art and History of the White House - Discovery Education

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6 to 12
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Go behind the scenes for an in-depth video discussion of the art and history of the White House with White House Curator William Allman. The actual discussion begins after the ...more
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Go behind the scenes for an in-depth video discussion of the art and history of the White House with White House Curator William Allman. The actual discussion begins after the 14-minute mark on the video with an interview led by a high school student.

tag(s): art history (73), presidents (116), video (245), white house (13)

In the Classroom

Before viewing this video, challenge students to brainstorm what a curator's job is and what kind of artifacts they might find in the White House. After viewing, extend learning by having students create a simple infographic of important White House artifacts sharing their findings using Venngage, reviewed here. Ask students to curate their own collection of items such as things found in their room at home, a collection of items from your school, or a collection of artifacts from your hometown. Create a book featuring these items using Ourboox, reviewed here. Ourboox creates beautiful page-flipping digital books in minutes, and you can embed video, music, animation, games, maps and more truly redefining learning.

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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 the 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 completing the online registration.

tag(s): business (44), DAT device agnostic tool (167), game based learning (156), investing (5), money (128), stock market (7)

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. Encourage families to 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. Because this is ongoing activity, enhance learning with the use of technology throughout. Have students share financial resource sites using a bookmarking tool like SearchTeam, reviewed here. In addition to curating and sharing bookmarks, SearchTeam allows you the opportunity to add notes and comments to sites shared. Have students use a video creation tool like Powtoon, reviewed here, to make explainer videos of financial concepts. Ask groups of students to produce and share podcasts (perhaps weekly or bi-weekly) to discuss their learning and progress within the Stock Market Game. Buzzsprout, reviewed here, is a free tool for creating and sharing podcasts.

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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 (75), presidents (116)

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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Television Commercial Analysis Chart - The Learning Network/New York Times

Grades
6 to 12
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This PDF provides a very easy to use chart for providing information found in political candidate's tv commercials. Fill in the blanks to describe what the commercial shows, what you...more
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This PDF provides a very easy to use chart for providing information found in political candidate's tv commercials. Fill in the blanks to describe what the commercial shows, what you hear, and what you think the producers want you to get from the commercial. The final box provides an opportunity to discuss your thoughts on the effectiveness of the ad.

tag(s): advertising (24), elections (75), presidents (116)

In the Classroom

Print and use this form to include with your election unit as you analzye the candidates and their pitch for votes. This form is pretty basic, use it as a starting point for a more in-depth look at political commercials. Ask students to list ideas to include on your form. Include information from your analysis of political commercials and have students make a multimedia presentation using one of the many TeachersFirst Edge tools, reviewed here.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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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.

tag(s): elections (75), electoral college (18)

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 Zeemaps, reviewed here, to identify the number of electoral votes available in each state. Zeemaps allows students to create audio recordings AND choose various locations on a map, and additional information such as how the electoral votes were cast in previous elections. You could use EdPuzzle, reviewed here, to share the video with students. Use EdPuzzle to add comments, questions, and point out highlights within the videos. YouTube videos are viewable in EdPuzzle, even if your school blocks YouTube!Use EdPuzzle to add comments, questions, and point out highlights within the videos.

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Electoral College - The Lou Frey Institute of Politics & Government

Grades
5 to 12
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This 5 minute YouTube video explores one of the misunderstood elements of presidential elections - the Electoral College. Using easy to understand language, the moderator explains the...more
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This 5 minute YouTube video explores one of the misunderstood elements of presidential elections - the Electoral College. Using easy to understand language, the moderator explains the role of the Electoral College and how the popular vote translates into votes in the Electoral College. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable.

tag(s): elections (75), electoral college (18)

In the Classroom

View this video together on an interactive whiteboard to illustrate the impact of the Electoral College voting on the election of the US President, both today and in the past. Alternatively, embed it in your class web page for the duration of your elections unit. Have students create their own "in plain English" video about a topic in government using Typito, reviewed here, and share them using a tool such as SchoolTube, reviewed here. Use an online tool such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram, reviewed here, to compare and contrast differences between the popular vote and Electoral College votes. Add questions to this video for students to explore further using a tool such as EdPuzzle, reviewed here.

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Civil War - Tale of Two Titans - Norwich University's Master of Arts in Military History Program

Grades
5 to 12
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Discover this interesting infographic comparing two leaders of the Civil War. Learn about Ulysses S. Grant and Robert E. Lee with comparisons of both their personal life and careers....more
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Discover this interesting infographic comparing two leaders of the Civil War. Learn about Ulysses S. Grant and Robert E. Lee with comparisons of both their personal life and careers. Information also includes famous battles during the Civil War and their careers following the war. Scroll past the infographic to view sources used and additional information.

tag(s): 1800s (55), civil war (125)

In the Classroom

Use the provided embed code to insert the infographic into your class website. Have students use this as a starting point for further research on Civil War leaders. Enhance learning and use an online tool such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram, reviewed here, to compare and contrast information. Challenge students to redefine their learning by creating Civil War timelines (with music, photos, videos, and more) using Timeline JS, reviewed here.

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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 (44), american revolution (73), civil war (125), climate change (72), cold war (23), demographics (13), earthquakes (41), landforms (37), maps (217), minerals (16), oceans (130), population (51), rocks (37), volcanoes (51), weather (156), world war 1 (58)

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, enhance srudent learning by challenging students to create a presentation using Prezi, reviewed here, demonstrating information learned.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Data USA - Deloitte, Datawheel, and Cesar Hidalgo

Grades
6 to 12
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Data USA provides a comprehensive and in-depth look at data across the United States using public government data. Search for data using cities, states, or topics such as education...more
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Data USA provides a comprehensive and in-depth look at data across the United States using public government data. Search for data using cities, states, or topics such as education or occupations. When searching for locations, Data USA provides an exhausting overview of demographics, economy, health, and more for the locations. In addition to searching for data, this site also offers many maps demonstrating statistics for population, median age, workforce, and much more. Choose the stories link to read stories written using the data found on the site.

tag(s): cities (17), communities (31), data (133), demographics (13), population (51), states (122), statistics (112)

In the Classroom

Bookmark Data USA to use as a resource for finding and comparing U.S. statistics. Explore information about your city or state and compare to other locations. Show students a purpose for these facts by assigning different articles from the Stories section. Dig deeper into current events using this site. Explore the demographics and economy of any place in the news to help understand local issues. If your class has a partner class in another part of the country, Data USA is a perfect resource for sharing and comparing community information. Depending on the topic of study, after exploring this site, Redefine learning by challenging students to make a multimedia presentation such as a poster using Lucidpress, reviewed here, infographic with Infogram, reviewed here, or a slide show using Slidestory, reviewed here.

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How the Electoral College Works - CGP Grey

Grades
5 to 12
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Many students (and adults) don't fully understand the electoral college process; this short video explains the electoral college in easy to understand terms. The moderator delves into...more
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Many students (and adults) don't fully understand the electoral college process; this short video explains the electoral college in easy to understand terms. The moderator delves into some of the complications and misunderstandings involved with the electoral college and discusses how some U.S. citizens don't have electoral college representation. If your district blocks YouTube, the video may not be viewable.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): elections (75), electoral college (18)

In the Classroom

Use the site on an interactive whiteboard to illustrate the impact of Electoral College voting on the election of the US President, both today and in the past. Share this video on an interactive whiteboard or projector during election season or a unit on voting and elections. Alternatively, embed it in your class web page for the duration of your elections unit. Have students create their own "in plain English" video about a topic in government and share them using a tool such as SchoolTube, reviewed here.

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