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OK2Ask: 3 Cool Tools for Digital Reading - TeachersFirst

Grades
3 to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session is from February 2024. You can register and immediately view the archive of the session.

Digital or online
...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session is from February 2024. You can register and immediately view the archive of the session.

Digital or online reading is different from reading print. Digital reading often includes a research component that is not linear, so when reading online, students need to clarify their purpose and then evaluate and synthesize information. Come learn about the processes involved in digital reading and explore three tools that will help you teach critical strategies to your students. As a result of this session, teachers will: 1. Understand skills and processes involved in digital reading. 2. Explore tools that help students find, evaluate, and synthesize what they read. 3. Plan for digital reading instruction in the classroom. This session is appropriate for teachers at all technology levels.

tag(s): digital reading (15), professional development (379), reading strategies (96)

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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Flaticon - Flaticon

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K to 12
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Flaticon offers an extensive repository of free icons and stickers for use with any project. Free accounts allow you to download icons in PNG format. Browse the home page to ...more
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Flaticon offers an extensive repository of free icons and stickers for use with any project. Free accounts allow you to download icons in PNG format. Browse the home page to find the top icons and stickers, or use the search bar to locate specific icons. Click on the icon to download or add to a collection. A free account is required to create up to three collections with up to 256 icons per collection.

tag(s): images (268), preK (254), presentations (15), symbols (15)

In the Classroom

Use images from this collection with any digital projects, and be sure to share them with students to use with their digital creations. These images are perfect for many projects, including book reports, newsletters, multimedia presentations, etc. Use images in various ways, such as to include in explainer videos created with Adobe Creative Cloud Express, reviewed here, in digital books made with Imagine Forest, reviewed here, and in multimedia presentations made with Sway, reviewed here.

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Pear Practice - Pear Deck

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K to 12
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Pear Practice is a gamified learning experience that promotes collaborative learning and independent practice using tools provided by Pear Deck, reviewed...more
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Pear Practice is a gamified learning experience that promotes collaborative learning and independent practice using tools provided by Pear Deck, reviewed here. Use Pear Practice to create learning experiences or choose from the large selection of activities in the practice sets. When creating a set, Pear Practice allows members to create multiple-choice, fill-in-the-blank, drawing, and drag-and-drop questions. Once a practice set is chosen, create an assignment for individual practice or start a live practice by choosing one of the game mode options. Options within live practice activities allow educators to set time limits for questions, allow guest students not in Pear Deck classrooms, and create random groups. Students join activities using the unique code or by sharing a link. When sharing as an assignment, specify a start and ending date and assign an accuracy goal for students to achieve. Students can retake the assignment as often as needed to meet the accuracy goal. Many activities in Pear Practice's public library correlate to Common Core Standards.

tag(s): assessment (145), differentiation (83), quiz (66), quizzes (88), Teacher Utilities (143)

In the Classroom

Include Pear Practice as part of your ongoing practice and formative assessment activities. Browse the site's public library to find many activities for all grade levels and subjects, then edit questions to fit your needs. Use this feature to differentiate practice materials and games to accommodate the different needs of your students. Create sets that meet your specific needs as you become comfortable using Pear Practice. For example, generate practice sets for multilingual learners to learn vocabulary before beginning a new unit or make a set for students needing additional math facts practice. Include a link to assigned Pear Practice activities on your class website or parent newsletter for at-home practice.

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OK2Ask: Engage & Inspire with Fake Websites - TeachersFirst

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3 to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session is from January 2024. You can register and immediately view the archive of the session.

Misinformation
...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session is from January 2024. You can register and immediately view the archive of the session.

Misinformation is rampant online. As educators, how can we prepare students to navigate this landscape? In this interactive workshop, participants will explore techniques for leveraging fake websites to build essential media literacy skills. Join us to explore this engaging approach to promoting digital citizenship and critical thinking. Leave equipped with practical strategies for developing media-savvy students through authentic learning experiences that incorporate analyzing fake websites. As a result of this session, teachers will: 1. Evaluate fake websites and identify specific indicators of misinformation, such as biased language, questionable sources, and misleading visuals. 2. Learn strategies for responsibly incorporating fake websites into instruction to foster critical thinking. 3. Plan to implement activities using fake websites in instruction. This session is appropriate for teachers at all technology levels.

tag(s): digital citizenship (83), media literacy (102), professional development (379)

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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Twitter Chat: Reading Reimagined in the Digital Era - TeachersFirst

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K to 12
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This archived Twitter chat is from February 2024 and will open in Wakelet. The title of this chat is: Reading Reimagined in the Digital Era. During this chat, participants: 1. ...more
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This archived Twitter chat is from February 2024 and will open in Wakelet. The title of this chat is: Reading Reimagined in the Digital Era. During this chat, participants: 1. Explored digital reading tools that meet diverse learning needs, 2. Discussed strategies for integrating digital reading resources into your existing curriculum, and 3. Gained insights into how digital reading resources can be used to differentiate instruction.

tag(s): digital reading (15), independent reading (84), reading comprehension (142), reading strategies (96), science of reading (31), twitterchatarchive (171)

In the Classroom

Find resources and information about reading reimagined in the digital era. Share this chat with your colleagues looking for strategies and resources for reading in the digital era.

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OK2Ask: Google My Maps Basics - TeachersFirst

Grades
1 to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session is from January 2024. You can register and immediately view the archive of the session.

Google Maps is
...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session is from January 2024. You can register and immediately view the archive of the session.

Google Maps is a familiar tool for finding directions, but it has so much more potential for dynamic learning in the classroom. Google My Maps allows educators to create customized, interactive maps to engage students with location-based projects across subjects and grades. In this workshop, participants will learn the basics of building customized maps and explore examples of how other teachers have used My Maps to enhance instruction, collaboration, and student projects. Learn strategies for using My Maps to allow students to guide their own explorations, tell location-based stories, visualize data, and demonstrate their learning. As a result of this session, teachers will: 1. Build a customized My Maps demo map incorporating markers, shapes, and multimedia elements. 2. Explore examples of My Maps projects and reflect on potential connections to their own instruction. 3. Plan for their own instructional My Maps project to try with students. This session is appropriate for teachers at all technology levels.

tag(s): map skills (56), maps (208), professional development (379)

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: Save Time, Enhance Learning, and Maximize Resources with TeachersFirst - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session is from January 2024. You can register and immediately view the archive of the session.

Spend less time
...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session is from January 2024. You can register and immediately view the archive of the session.

Spend less time searching and more time teaching with TeachersFirst.org! This workshop will empower educators by introducing them to the thousands of original and curated classroom resources on the site--all reviewed and rated by real teachers. You'll learn how to enrich instruction by taking advantage of lesson plan ideas and explanations of how to integrate top-rated resources into your classroom. You'll also discover how to stay on top of education trends through TeachersFirst's blogs, workshops, and weekly newsletter. Maximize your time and resources by finding everything you need in one place. As a result of this session, teachers will: 1. Discover time-saving strategies for finding top-rated teaching resources reviewed by real educators. 2. Learn how to integrate TeachersFirst's highly-rated resources into engaging and effective lesson plans. 3. Gain access to a network of support through TeachersFirst's blogs, workshops, and newsletter to stay on top of education trends. This session is appropriate for teachers at all technology levels.

tag(s): professional development (379), resources (87)

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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I Think That I Shall Never See - Using and Analyzing Poetry in the Classroom - TeachersFirst

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K to 8
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TeachersFirst Help! I Lost My Library/Media Specialist series, reviewed here shares this article that includes ideas and resources for teaching and...more
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TeachersFirst Help! I Lost My Library/Media Specialist series, reviewed here shares this article that includes ideas and resources for teaching and engaging students in learning about poetry. The background section covers the history of poetry, from epic poems of the ancient Greeks to modern free verse, addressing complex themes. The activities sections provide suggestions for poetry books and activities. Further down the page, the extensions share resources and ideas for students to create and share poems. Information includes correlation to ISTE and AASL standards.

tag(s): book lists (158), poetry (187)

In the Classroom

Use the ideas found in this article to find poetry books and activities that engage students while teaching the concepts and features of poetry. Ask students to share and illustrate their favorite poems, then create a class flip book using PDF to Flipbook Converter, reviewed here. If necessary, take pictures of student projects, then use SmallPDF, reviewed here to convert your JPG to a PDF document. Extend learning further by hosting a poetry slam or poetry reading that features students' poetry. Find ideas for hosting a poetry event by reading the TeachersFirst blog post, From Page to Stage: Hosting a Poetry Cafe for Poem in Your Pocket Day, located here.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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The Story of My Life - Using Biographies to Enhance and Extend Instruction - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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Biographies are crucial to learning about our past, present, and future. This article is part of the TeachersFirst Help! I Lost My Library/Media Specialist series reviewed...more
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Biographies are crucial to learning about our past, present, and future. This article is part of the TeachersFirst Help! I Lost My Library/Media Specialist series reviewed here and shares book suggestions and activities for including biographies in any classroom. Browse the activities to find recommendations for specific biographies and resources for additional book lists. Find directions for creating body biographies and other tools to help students identify important biographical information. Extension activities include information on living wax museums and "You Become the Biographer," an activity for students to conduct interviews and create a biographical presentation. Information includes correlation to ISTE and AASL standards.

tag(s): biographies (93), book lists (158), interviews (14)

In the Classroom

Browse this article to find activities and book lists for use in your classroom when teaching biographies. Take advantage of dozens of downloadable templates available from Free Templates, reviewed here to help students organize their biographical research. When students are ready to share their learning, use Adobe's Animate from Audio, reviewed here to create videos with animated characters that tell a story using the student's recorded voice. Watch this tutorial video to learn how to create engaging animated videos using your voice!
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Good as Gold - Figurative Language in the Elementary Classroom - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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Understanding and using figurative language enhances spoken and written words. This article from the TeachersFirst Help! I Lost My Library/Media Specialist series reviewed...more
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Understanding and using figurative language enhances spoken and written words. This article from the TeachersFirst Help! I Lost My Library/Media Specialist series reviewed here shares background knowledge, book suggestions, and classroom activities to teach figures of speech to elementary students. Each section in the activities portion includes "read" and "do" suggestions for teaching similes, metaphors, and other figures of speech. Also included are extension activities to reinforce these concepts. Information includes correlation to ISTE and AASL standards.

tag(s): descriptive writing (38), figurative language (14), idioms (32), writing (315)

In the Classroom

Add a link to this article to include with your other resources for teaching figures of speech. Wakelet, reviewed here and Padlet, reviewed here are excellent tools for curating and organizing resources. Use AI image-creation tools such as Bing Image Creator, reviewed here and Canva's Free Online Image Generator, reviewed here to create images based upon figures of speech to help students visualize each term. Canva's Image generator automatically exports images to their presentation software to create slide presentations for use when teaching figures of speech. Extend learning by asking students to create slide presentations sharing their understanding of the different figures of speech or create videos demonstrating their learning using free tools available at Adobe Creative Cloud Express, reviewed here.

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230+ Accessibility Improvements Added to Book Creator - Book Creator/Dan Kemp

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K to 12
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This article shares many accessibility features added to Book Creator, reviewed here that offers options that make it easier for all students to access...more
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This article shares many accessibility features added to Book Creator, reviewed here that offers options that make it easier for all students to access and use Book Creator. Highlights include dictation support for over 120 languages, video captions, and transcripts to audio recordings. Other additions include features that improve color contrast to make reading more accessible for all and screen reader support. Learn more about how this supports educators by watching the included video that shares the updated features and has suggestions for differentiating lessons using Book Creator.

tag(s): Accessibility (9), differentiation (83), ebooks (38), professional development (379), Special Needs (52)

In the Classroom

Bookmark and save this article to support your use of Book Creator in your classroom and develop your understanding of how to use this resource to differentiate learning for all students. Learn how to use Book Creator in your classroom by visiting Supporting Language Learners with Book Creator, reviewed here and completing the Book Creator Certified Author course, Book Creator, reviewed here.

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ReadTheory Reading Passage Generator - ReadTheory

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K to 12
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ReadTheory's Reading Passage Generator is a quick and easy tool for generating reading passages and questions for any topic and grade level. Enter your topic in the chat box, then ...more
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ReadTheory's Reading Passage Generator is a quick and easy tool for generating reading passages and questions for any topic and grade level. Enter your topic in the chat box, then move to the next step to select a grade level, and then generate text. Within about a minute, your reading passage is created. Use the edit button in the title or reading passage to tweak the contents as desired. When satisfied, choose the looking good link to generate multiple choice questions based upon the text. Enter your email to receive the passage and questions, or download them as a PDF document.

tag(s): artificial intelligence (79), differentiation (83), reading comprehension (142), worksheets (71)

In the Classroom

Use this reading passage generator to create introductory and review passages for any subject; no registration is required. Differentiate for student ability levels by selecting different grade levels while providing all students the same information. Take some time to practice generating texts and questions to understand different ways to create questions that meet your needs. For example, when choosing lower elementary grades, sometimes the passages are too short in length. When entering the topic for your prompt, include guidelines for the passage length to create. If you want a passage about stars and planets, have the instructions to make the passage longer than 100 words. Extend learning using other AI tools such as MagicSchool, reviewed here by copying your prompt into one of the many tools available. Use MagicSchool's translator tool to translate for multilanguage learners, generate a list of vocabulary words, or create a science lab activity to accompany your chosen text and topic.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Twitter Chat: Winter Wellness Wonderland - TeachersFirst

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K to 12
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This archived Twitter chat is from January 2024 and will open in Wakelet. The title of this chat is Winter Wellness Wonderland. During this chat, participants: 1. Shared winter wellness...more
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This archived Twitter chat is from January 2024 and will open in Wakelet. The title of this chat is Winter Wellness Wonderland. During this chat, participants: 1. Shared winter wellness tips to help maintain students' and teachers' physical and mental health, 2. Collaborated on ideas to create a wellness-focused culture within their classrooms, and 3. Explored innovative ways to incorporate short wellness breaks, movement activities, and mindfulness exercises to enhance the overall learning environment.

tag(s): mental health (33), twitterchatarchive (171)

In the Classroom

Find resources and information about winter wellness tips for teachers and students. Share this chat with your colleagues looking for strategies and resources for creating conversations in the classroom.

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Summarize.tech - Summarize, LLC

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4 to 12
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Summarize.tech saves you and your students time using artificial intelligence (AI) to summarize long YouTube videos. Paste the YouTube URL and submit it to view a video summary. Most...more
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Summarize.tech saves you and your students time using artificial intelligence (AI) to summarize long YouTube videos. Paste the YouTube URL and submit it to view a video summary. Most summaries include an option to expand the summary to view more information. Use the shared examples to see how Summarize.tech works with a State of the Union Speech, San Francisco School Board Meeting, and other videos. When using AI tools, always check the results for accuracy.

tag(s): artificial intelligence (79), summarizing (20), video (253)

In the Classroom

Use Summarize.tech as a time-saving tool when searching for YouTube videos in your classroom to get a quick overview of the video's content. Before sharing videos with students, provide a summary of the contents to give direction when students are viewing the video. Copy the summary onto a Google Document, then ask students to share information from the original video that provides additional information. Use the provided summaries as examples of how to write a summary, then ask students to summarize a video and compare their results to those given by this site.

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Patsy Mink - My Hero

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3 to 12
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This short biography of Patsy Mink highlights her accomplishments and lifelong advocacy for women's equity. This article includes information about her family history, ways she fought...more
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This short biography of Patsy Mink highlights her accomplishments and lifelong advocacy for women's equity. This article includes information about her family history, ways she fought racial discrimination, successful elections, and how she introduced and co-authored the legislation known as Title IX, The Patsy Mink Equal Opportunity in Education Act. Also included is a YouTube video featuring Patsy Mink. If your district blocks YouTube, then the video may not be viewable.

tag(s): biographies (93), heroes (21), politics (113), women (132)

In the Classroom

Include this biography of Patsy Mink in lessons on heroes, women in history, famous politicians, the 1900s, or influential Hawaiians. Use a curation tool such as Symbaloo, reviewed here or 3x3 links, reviewed here to share articles, videos, and activities easily with students. Use Timelinely, reviewed here to engage students and extend learning by adding information to the YouTube video included on this site. For example, use the 20th Century America (1945-2000) TeachersFirst Special Topics Page, reviewed here to find additional historical context to learn about women's political roles during the 1970s, then include a link to those resources on the video using Timelinely. As an alternative to a book report or written research project, provide students with different opportunities for sharing what they know at the end of your unit using Choice Boards. Activities to include might be creating interactive timelines with Canva Timeline Infographic Templates, reviewed here, a web site created with Google Sites, reviewed here, or an explainer video made with Animaker, reviewed here. Learn more about incorporating choice boards into any classroom by watching the archive of OK2Ask: Engage & Inspire: Choice Boards for Differentiation (Part 1), reviewed here.

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Science of Reading Podcast - Susan Lambert

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K to 12
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Explore the topic of the Science of Reading by listening to this series that showcases national models of reading excellence. Podcasts feature national experts and explore topics that...more
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Explore the topic of the Science of Reading by listening to this series that showcases national models of reading excellence. Podcasts feature national experts and explore topics that include knowledge and vocabulary, integrating science with literary activities, and focused implementation. Episodes typically run from forty minutes to an hour and are available on most podcasting services, including Apple, Spotify, and Google.

tag(s): dyslexia (11), literacy (106), podcasts (69), professional development (379), reading comprehension (142), science of reading (31), vocabulary (234)

In the Classroom

Include this podcast in your list of professional development activities. Start with the first season and listen to all episodes to catch up, or visit the information for each season to find podcasts of interest. Use Wakelet, reviewed here to curate and share your favorite podcasts with your peers, use the search feature on Wakelet to find other collections of teacher podcasts to find ideas to include with your collection.

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Kids Think Wide - Lucy Spruce

Grades
3 to 12
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Kids Think Wide uses artificial intelligence (AI)-created images to inspire student creativity and storytelling. Visit the pictures portion of the site to find vibrant images that include...more
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Kids Think Wide uses artificial intelligence (AI)-created images to inspire student creativity and storytelling. Visit the pictures portion of the site to find vibrant images that include discussion questions and writing prompts. Use the included filters to narrow the hundreds of images into text types such as poetry, descriptive, informative, and additional text types. The Choose Your Adventure section features picture prompts that engage students in collaborative storytelling as group projects. Navigate this section using the tags at the bottom of the page or choose from the different topics that take students on musical journeys, magic carpet adventures, and more.

tag(s): artificial intelligence (79), creative writing (121), descriptive writing (38), images (268), persuasive writing (55), poetry (187), writing (315), writing prompts (57)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of the many engaging writing activities and images to inspire student writers and offer flexible options that pique student interest. Incorporate the warmup questions in the pictures and the choices in the Choose Your Adventure activities to encourage students to show creativity while teaching necessary skills such as using adjectives, describing emotions, and exploring relationships between characters. Use student interactives available at Read Write Think, reviewed here to help students plan story maps, diagram plots, and edit writing projects. Extend learning by asking students to bring their stories to life by creating animated videos with Animoto, reviewed here.

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Twitter Chat: Creating Conversations in the Classroom - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This archived Twitter chat is from December 2023 and will open in Wakelet. The title of this chat is: Creating Conversations in the Classroom. During this chat, participants: 1. Defined...more
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This archived Twitter chat is from December 2023 and will open in Wakelet. The title of this chat is: Creating Conversations in the Classroom. During this chat, participants: 1. Defined and discussed the importance of using discussion strategies in the classroom; 2. Explored how to integrate technology tools and platforms to enhance discussions, and 3. Shared ways to create a supportive and inclusive classroom environment that fosters open and respectful discussions among students.

tag(s): difficult conversations (58), twitterchatarchive (171)

In the Classroom

Find resources and information about creating conversations in the classroom. Share this chat with your colleagues looking for strategies and resources for creating conversations in the classroom.

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Teachally - EZ Reward, LLC

Grades
K to 12
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Teachally uses artificial intelligence (AI) to create personalized, standards-aligned lesson plans that include enrichment activities and ideas for differentiated learning instruction....more
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Teachally uses artificial intelligence (AI) to create personalized, standards-aligned lesson plans that include enrichment activities and ideas for differentiated learning instruction. Free plans allow teachers to add up to fifty students, including twenty-five AI credits monthly and unlimited lesson plans, rewards, and messages. After creating an account, use the links on your dashboard to add a class, plan and teach, communicate, find templates, and more. Next, use the create lesson option to generate a lesson based on your objectives and standards. Options are available to upload resources and import standards. After developing lessons, use the edit options to adjust the lesson and activities as desired. Return to your lessons to find additional AI generation tools that create images, questions based on Bloom's Taxonomy, choice boards, exit tickets, and more. Teachally has many built-in video tutorials that guide members through the options offered. Always check your results for accuracy when using AI-generation tools.

tag(s): artificial intelligence (79), differentiation (83), Teacher Utilities (143)

In the Classroom

Teachally is a handy tool to use for many different purposes. Use Teachally to find ideas for choice boards, generate questions, and create exit tickets for any lesson. Quickly create a presentation from a lesson using the enrichment tools for flipped or blended learning lessons, and then share the activity on your class website or LMS. Use Teachally's trivia game creator as a quick, engaging formative assessment activity. Many enrichment activities, such as the presentations and trivia game creators, use Google Slides; after saving these slides, edit and change questions and information as needed. Use Teachally's message center to invite parents to the platform, then share updates and bulletins that inform parents about current classroom activities.

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Virtual Readability Lab - Shaun Wallace

Grades
3 to 12
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What font do you read fastest in? Take the test provided by the Virtual Readability Lab to test the best font for you. Begin by starting the test to view ...more
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What font do you read fastest in? Take the test provided by the Virtual Readability Lab to test the best font for you. Begin by starting the test to view the directions. The test shares several short reading passages along with comprehension questions at the end of each passage and takes approximately five minutes to complete. When finished, users receive a report that includes the number of words read per minute, the correct percentage of questions answered, and the font that best matches the users' reading style. The authors of the Virtual Readability Lab recommend participants complete the test on a computer, not a phone, to achieve the best results.

tag(s): digital reading (15), reading comprehension (142), reading strategies (96)

In the Classroom

According to studies, reading in a font that best matches your reading style can increase reading speed without affecting comprehension and lead to better focus. Knowing your readers' fastest font allows educators to support student learning by adjusting fonts when creating worksheets, sharing websites, or providing articles. Use the information learned to adjust font settings in computer browsers. Go to settings, appearance, and fonts in Chrome or Edge to change all websites' font families, sizes, and weights. Include this site in activities encouraging students to participate in active learning and reflective experiences. After completing the test, ask students to write a summary of their results that includes action steps based on the information received. This activity might make an excellent addition to your students' academic portfolios. Create their portfolios in Seesaw, reviewed here or about.me, reviewed here.

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