July 28, 2019

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Featured EDTECH Resources Reviewed by TeachersFirst

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Get Off to a Great Start!

As schools get ready for back-to-school, this week we share resources to help you prepare for the new year. We begin with three tools to help you prepare for the first day. 

Grades K-12

Classroom Architect

Design the layout of your classroom: select basic dimensions and then move desks, arrange tables, and add carpet with the drag-and-drop feature. You can also free-draw custom items not already listed on the site.

Grades K-6

Back to School Read-alouds

Build classroom community during those all-important first few weeks of school by reading with your students. To get started, check out this collection of read-aloud suggestions, books are divided by grade level.

Grades K-6


Get organized with this tool that offers options for communicating with parents, behavior record keeping, and online tools to assist in the classroom, including timer, bell, random name picker, seating chart, awards, checklists, and virtual chalkboard.

Make the Most of the First Weeks

Teachers know the importance of setting the classroom climate during the first few weeks of a new year. Make the most of this pivotal time with tools to share goals, adjust seating charts, and help students be organized.

Grades K-12

Future Me - Write a Letter to the Future

Students can create emails to be sent to themselves in the future (up to 50 years later)! Ask students to set yearly goals and then schedule an email to send halfway through the school-year so that they can check their progress. See review for more ideas.

Grades K-6

Happy Class

As you get to know your class, you may want to rearrange the desks/tables. Create charts in minutes based on students' needs and relationships with this online seating chart maker.

Grades 5-12


Help students get organized with an electronic planner! The planner will track homework, assignments, tests, and more. Students enter class information including start and end times, classroom number, teacher information, homework, and notes.

Get to Know Your Students

From creative introductions to classroom ice breakers to needs assessments, there's a tool for that! Connect and get to know your students with these three helpful finds.

Grades 2-9

Trading Card Creator

Challenge students to create and share their own trading cards to introduce themselves to the class. (Don't forget to create one for yourself!) Detailed instructions are provided. Hang the trading cards on the bulletin board for other students to view.

Grades K-12

Getting to Know You Ideas from TeachersFirst

Try these activities from TeachersFirst to help you and your students get to know one another early in the school year. There are activity ideas for elementary and secondary level students. And, there is a link to even more ideas to explore!

Grades 1-12


Try this during back to school time! Based on 23 factors, Thrively offers a strengths and interests assessment for your students. The educator receives a profile that is personal, positive, and celebrates each child's core strengths and unique talents.

This Week at TeachersFirst

Our summer learning opportunities continue to sizzle this week with two OK2Ask® virtual workshops and a Twitter chat. And, please take a moment to answer our weekly poll.

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OK2Ask Virtual Workshops

Learn About Hyperdocs and Wakelet

OK2Ask offers free, quality, virtual learning for K12 educators. Join us Tuesday (7/30) for Believe the Hype! Using Hyperdocs for Innovative Instruction. Come back on Wednesday (7/31), for Tech Integration Made Easy with Wakelet.

Get the details and register for summer workshops »

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OK2Ask Twitter Chats

Share Resources for a Successful Back to School

Tweet with us this Thursday (8/1) at 8 pm ET to discuss instructional trends and hot topics for the 2019-2020 school year. Share management strategies for creating an organized and successful start to the year.

Use the hashtag #OK2Ask to join the conversation »

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Weekly Poll

Share Your Thoughts

This week our poll asks: What are you most excited about relating to back to school? Share your response on our poll.

What makes you excited about back to school? »

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About TeachersFirst
TeachersFirst is a collection of curated, classroom-ready content and ideas — including teacher-authored reviews of thousands of web resources. Built-in guidance from seasoned professionals makes effective classroom technology use trouble-free. TeachersFirst is made available free to K12 teachers by The Source for Learning, Inc., a nonprofit that has been providing educational resources for more than 40 years.