Grades5 to 12
In the ClassroomEncourage students to connect with current events by sharing the daily post (or one per week) on your projector or interactive whiteboard as students enter homeroom or settle in for the start of class. If you teach reading, this is the perfect way to entice students to READ informational texts with a visual image in mind, adding a purpose to their reading of non-fiction. This is a very creative way to practice close reading, as students look for the reasons behind the illustrator's choices. Extend the activity by challenging students in reading OR social studies classes to create their own Wordless News illustrations to reflect a news story they find on their own. Share the challenges on a class wiki for other students to "guess" and include the links to the stories. Art teachers can use this blog as an example of the many ways artists find inspiration in everyday life. Even the very young can "draw" a news story they read. ESL/ELL teachers can use these illustrations to build speaking vocabulary as students discuss and guess the news stories and practice their language skills reading the actual text. Use this blog in social studies class to inspire historic " wordless news" stories with accompanying articles written by students (or primary source stories from the time). What would the illustration and article be like for the Emancipation Proclamation?
GradesK to 12
In the ClassroomUse this site as a potential funding source or make a donation. Join the site (free). Then take the time to write up a clearly-worded project proposal along with pictures and video. You can even make the project a challenge to your school community, if you wish. If you are a student council or Key Club adviser, make one or more of the projects on this site your targeted service project for the year. Or use this venue to collect funds to purchase materials for your own school or club service projects. Encourage philanthropy to support good causes: kids helping kids! Share with your school's Parent Teacher Organization as a fundraising tool for any and all projects. Don't forget to send the project descriptions with local media such as small town newspapers, local TV, or service groups who might make a donation.
Grades4 to 12
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In the ClassroomCompare different continents and brainstorm why some continents lose more land than others. Predict the areas that will be the hardest hit socially, politically, and economically. Research the population of these coastal areas to fully realize the enormity of the problem. Discuss the time frame needed to see these changes and begin looking for information that shows land loss is already occurring. (Note: There is research of land loss and reclamation efforts in Scandinavia and in Virginia.) How will this alter ecosystems and how humans depend upon the living things around them? Challenge cooperative learning groups to create simple infographic sharing their findings or predictions using Easel.ly, reviewed here or Venngage reviewed here.
Grades5 to 12
In the ClassroomThese interesting, topical lessons would make a great resource for days when a substitute will be in your classroom or may fit perfectly in your regular curriculum. The Internet plan is well suited for digital citizenship and/or research curriculum. Save in your sub folder for a ready-to-go class activity. Print and use lessons as part of class debates and projects. Use a tool like Zoho Show (similar to Powerpoint, but easier and free) - reviewed here) for students to present results.
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomUse Migrations Map during your study of any country to view immigration and emigration statistics in social studies, science, health, or even world language classes. Introduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students explore this site independently or in small groups. Ask WHY these immigration patterns exist. What factors lead to immigration? What environmental impacts does it have? Be sure to point out the data lag -- is from 2007. You can also send them to find updated stats at the World Bank and other online sources. Have students create a simple infographic sharing their findings using Easel.ly, reviewed here or Venngage reviewed here. Have students create maps using Animaps (reviewed here). Students can add text, images, and location stops!
Grades3 to 12
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In the ClassroomThis resource is useful to hook your students at the beginning of your lessons or simply to get them reading non-fiction text. Use these as hooks to get your students thinking about content that will be introduced in the lesson. Students can find a Zidbit they are interested in. Poll students about possible answers and then report the actual answer and content needed in order to understand and explain it. Learn a new Zidbit yourself every week. If you teach public speaking skills, have students use these stories as inspiration or "hooks" for informational speeches, as well.
Grades7 to 12
In the ClassroomCreate a class Minilog account to keep a running account of useful articles, videos, and items for use in class. Add content that the students find and discuss in class. Use for students to keep a running account of current events in the classroom, science news and the impact on society, and more. Minilogs could be used in music, art, government, and nearly any other subject. Create Minilogs about current (or past) presidents. Create a Minilog to share a specific art style or music genre. Collect videos on a certain topic, even from several content video sites like Khan Academy to "flip" your class with an entire playlist of options. The possibilities are endless. Challenge students to create their own Minilogs in cooperative learning groups or independently. If you are teaching about media literacy or advertising bias, Minilogs are the perfect way for students to create curated collections of videos with accompanying notes.
Grades4 to 12
In the ClassroomDepending on the age you teach and your school policies, you may want to use a class account with a teacher-controlled email address to create with Popcorn Maker. Use a video from a presidential debate and add layers that fact check the statements made or view the media consensus at the time. Use this tool to create a video of a science experiment while creating pop ups of relevant information. Create a remix of a popular play or story that includes pop ups of information about the characters. Include their motivations or give the reactions of the readers with each story. Do you have a snippet of a discoverer? Add layers that show map routes, legends, unintended consequences on local peoples, etc. Use videos of sports teams to overlay stats, congratulation tweets, and more. Use world language videos with overlays of translations, dictionary references, and help in understanding. Analyze commercials (for example, foods targeted at children) with facts about the food and relation to diet and health. Create elevator pitches and upload to YouTube. Invite classmates to overlay the pitches with comments and suggestions. Use student created or existing YouTube videos that help to explain math and science concepts. Further enhance their helpful potential with overlays that elevate the learning. Pose a problem in the form of a YouTube video and invite students to remix the video to include possible solutions. Students can create presentations using this tool and show their reactions to current events or other world problem. Allow other students to remix and comment upon the presentation and add their own thoughts. Share the remixes on your interactive whiteboard or projector. If permitted, share the links to students' remixes on your class website or wiki. Teachers of gifted will love the creative (and critical) challenges this tool offers.
Parent permission advised before posting student work created using this tool
Includes Interaction w general public/ public galleries with unmoderated content
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Products can be embedded
Products can be shared by URL
Grades4 to 12
In the ClassroomBookmark and save PAT as a resource for free printable maps for use anytime needed. Share with students to easily find and locate geographic information. Share the maps on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Share this link on your class website for students to use both in and out of the classroom.
GradesK to 12
In the ClassroomUse Slideful to create quick slideshows for any classroom use. Easily share images on your website or blog from field trips, classroom projects, or assemblies. Have students create presentations to "introduce" themselves to the class during the first week of school. Create a slide show to introduce any unit and have students guess what they will be learning.
Grades5 to 8
In the ClassroomFollow the directions to have your class build suspension bridges, individually or in pairs. Have students create an online book of images and captions about Ruby Bridges using Pixabay, reviewed here, for the images and Book Creator, reviewed here, to make the book. This activity could be an alternative to the hand written double entry journal. Challenge your students to use a site such as TimeGlider, reviewed here, to create an interactive timeline with event spans that can overlap each other and create a greater understanding of how events can influence other events in Ruby Bridges' life.
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomClick Classroom to find Lesson Plan 2 for using the game. Try using this Wonder Women lesson along with The HTML 5 Gender in Advertising Remixing reviewed here. This site may help students draw conclusions about advertisers targeting boys and girls differently. Then you can relate their newfound knowledge back to the gender stereotypes they discovered in Wonder Women. Next you might consider introducing students to the modern heroine Cat, who represents an unconventional superheroine in My So Called Secret Identity reviewed here. For a complete unit, add a project where students collect and annotate a group of web links that show gender stereotypes. Use a bookmarking tool from the TeachersFirst Edge.
GradesK to 12
In the ClassroomAssess prior knowledge as you start a unit by generating a class whiteboard. Save it under your class/teacher account to re-access throughout the unit, adding new topics and content. Make the URL available from your class web page for students to use as a review or for learning support teachers to reinforce what has happened in class. Have student groups map out the content of projects. Encourage visual prewriting for the students who "think in pictures." Have students create review organizers to share with classmates. Allow students to use their whiteboard as their visual during speeches. Map the sequence of steps in a chemical reaction. Then share the URL for absent students to "see" what happened in class. Annotate design principles directly on top of an uploaded image. Have young students use a whiteboard to draw out ideas before they can even write entire sentences. The real asset is that the files are saved and available from ANY computer!
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomFind great MapStory maps to introduce a concept or explain a portion of the concept that may be difficult to introduce in class. Use one to show initially, eliciting thoughts and questions from students. Because it is an open database, maps could contain errors. Have students be on the lookout for any possible errors. Students can fact check, research, and rewrite information as needed. Consider creating an assignment that shows a change in information over time. This project would be applicable to any subject area. Consider creating a class account to maintain the MapStories created by your students. Imagine new information being added every year with new updates to the map! World language (or world cultures) classes could collaborate to create a map story about a specific culture.
GradesK to 12
In the ClassroomWideo is much like Go Animate reviewed here. However, Wideo's advantage is in the ability to upload your media. (Note: This could be a disadvantage if inappropriate material from the general public is uploaded. The site does have a public gallery, but nothing inappropriate was viewable at the time of this review. It is always wise to check the gallery prior to using in class (or simply steer the class away from the gallery.) This tool has a wide variety of applications for the classroom. Have students make an animation about a historical figure or a character in a novel. As students write their own story, use Wideo to animate the characters. Use Wideo to explain lab procedures or make a commercial about the superpowers of an element. If you use a template, the work will be quick and can focus on content instead of glitz. Students can explain vocabulary words, chemical equations, solving for X and more. Challenge your gifted students to create an entire animated series. ESL/ELL or world language students could create animations to practice or explain their new vocabulary. Use one of the templates to "advertise" an upcoming class project or even the daily homework assignments on your class we page. Have students help create ads for new books in the library!
Grades5 to 8
In the ClassroomThe trick in using All About Explorers is to keep the real lesson a secret at the beginning and allow students to come to their own conclusion. Processing that "aha!" moment when students recognize that there is a hidden agenda here will have a much more lasting impression than simply telling students they cannot believe everything they read. Deep inside, students often believe they can easily tell the difference between the Truth and something that is misleading or downright false. All About Explorers will help them see how difficult that can be. They might also learn something about explorers in the process! Extend this lesson by having student groups find another suspect site and create a screencast of that "suspicious" site, pointing out characteristics that indicate an unreliable source. A tool such as Screencast-o-matic, reviewed here, or Screencastify (Chrome app), reviewed here, will allow them to create a "tour" of the fallacies they find.
In the ClassroomUse your projector to show your class the different dialects for different areas of the U.S. Choose one of the kid-popular questions, i.e. Do you call a carbonated drink a soda, pop, or Coke? Show students how the results for your geographical area compare to others. If the New York Times site is still available, have students try the survey themselves for homework. Help students to notice that language is dynamic and changes according to region. Emphasize that using a dialect is not incorrect. They do not represent a language deficiency. Speaking a vernacular dialect is not the result of poor or incomplete language learning. Correctness in language is a matter of social acceptability. Though there is a "standard" English taught in schools, dialects must be respected as evidence of social identity and linguistic expertise. What are some examples students can give for special ways their family says something? What about in a social context, as in country western fans vs rapper fans? This site is also helpful for ESL/ELL and world language students to REALIZE that pronunciations and word choice vary and can identify where the speaker is from.
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomUse the "Find a Lesson" search to discover population education activities and information that will be useful in your curriculum or classroom. Find demonstration videos of how to use the lessons within the classroom. Be sure to preview and show the World Population Video (aka: the "dot video") to your classes. Share the video on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Use these resources when discussing population of organisms and then discussing human population.
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomBe sure to check with your Technology Department, as many districts require authorization to download or install new applications. Plan ahead as you request that this application be installed on your classroom or laptop cart computers. Alice provides an opportunity for students to create and learn how to problem solve. Subscribe to the teacher list to receive updates and integration ideas for Alice. The purpose of this list is to provide an easy way to ask questions and collaborate with the Alice teaching community. View and use activities to increase programming knowledge and the use of the Alice program.
Students quickly catch on to Alice when allowed to play and easily see what they can make from it. Provide a simple assignment with defined rules/tasks to learn the tools as well as the drag and drop interface. Have students use a storyboard to organize their creation in order to keep tabs on students and their creations. Create a storyboard either with paper and pencil or try using a digital storyboard like the Amazon Storybuilder, reviewed here, or Storyboard Generator, reviewed here. Build games to review curricular material for assessments. Have students create videos or digital stories to bring a subject to life. Teachers of gifted can turn their students loose to create animations about individual interests or research projects.