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Backpack TV Educational Video Library - Backpack.tv

Grades
8 to 12
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Backpack.tv contains videos produced by teachers of lectures about particular topic areas. Search by topic, subject, duration, or presenter for videos ranging from 5 to 20 minutes in...more
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Backpack.tv contains videos produced by teachers of lectures about particular topic areas. Search by topic, subject, duration, or presenter for videos ranging from 5 to 20 minutes in length. General subject areas (at the times of this review) include Algebra, Calculus, Chemistry, Basic Math, Economics, Physics, Biology, and Art History. Currently videos include only a title without a description of the content, so you may need to take some time to find videos that meet your needs. Create an account to save videos in your queue for easy access.

tag(s): angles (88), atoms (56), decimals (133), equations (155), fractions (239), functions (70), homework (44), periodic table (50), variables (22), vectors (25), video (254)

In the Classroom

Use videos on your interactive whiteboard to introduce or review content. Share videos on your classroom website or blog for student use at home. Share videos with students using the Facebook, Twitter, or email button. Encourage students to share links to specific videos they find helpful on a "Video Reviews" (yes, that is a pun) page of your class wiki. For a very real challenge, have students create their own simple review videos and upload to SchoolTube reviewed here or YouTube, whichever works best in your school. Embed them on your class wiki for a year-to-year, student-made study guide!
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U.S. Political Conventions and Campaigns - Northeastern University

Grades
4 to 12
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Learn all about U.S. political campaigns and party conventions. Five main sections explain it all: History, Campaign Finance, Nominations, Policy, and Media. Within each section are...more
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Learn all about U.S. political campaigns and party conventions. Five main sections explain it all: History, Campaign Finance, Nominations, Policy, and Media. Within each section are videos and articles about the current state of affairs as well as past practices. Each section offers lesson plans suitable for high school use. The sections also offer short review quizzes that provide instant feedback. Scroll through each section in order or choose from portions with links at the top of the section.

tag(s): elections (75), electoral college (16)

In the Classroom

Although lesson plans are geared to high school, this site is also useful for students in lower grades. Go directly to the quiz portion of each section, display on your interactive whiteboard, and take the quiz as a class as an overview of what students know about the election process. View sections on your interactive whiteboard to help students understand the different facets of a campaign. Assign students (or groups) different sections; then have them present information learned to their classmates. Create posters about the American political process using a tool such as Web Poster Wizard, reviewed here.

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PBS Video Online - PBS

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3 to 12
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Watch full episodes of your favorite PBS shows without having to record them. Videos may be searched by show name or by subject. Use the subscribe button to automatically subscribe...more
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Watch full episodes of your favorite PBS shows without having to record them. Videos may be searched by show name or by subject. Use the subscribe button to automatically subscribe to the show so you will never miss a new episode again.

tag(s): video (254)

In the Classroom

Teachers you can now access videos from PBS without having to record them. Use the subject search to find videos relevant to a unit of study. Display videos with your projector or add a link to your class website so students can watch at home.
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The White House Tour - Google Maps

Grades
K to 12
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This White House tour uses Google Maps street view tools to "tour" the inside of America's home. Use the circle tool in the upper left corner to rotate around the ...more
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This White House tour uses Google Maps street view tools to "tour" the inside of America's home. Use the circle tool in the upper left corner to rotate around the room, and click on objects to get a closer view.

tag(s): presidents (131), white house (14)

In the Classroom

Take your students on a virtual field trip! This is a great way for kids to "visit" the White House. Include it during inauguration week or any time you are studying U.S. government. Show the website using a projector, and have students write a tour script or a tale of something that might happen in the White House. Younger students might want to write a story from the President's dog's (or other pet's) point of view! Before using the site, you should familiarize yourself with how to use the Google Maps street view tools to navigate through the house. Better yet, have a student operate the tour on the whiteboard or projector.

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Edsitement - EdSitement

Grades
4 to 12
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Find lesson ideas and more for literature and language arts, foreign languages, art and culture, history and social studies at the reworked site that was once part of MarcoPolo. Book...more
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Find lesson ideas and more for literature and language arts, foreign languages, art and culture, history and social studies at the reworked site that was once part of MarcoPolo. Book articles, data bases, educational gaming, professional development events, sound, film, video resources, and resource website lists all aid teachers and learners. A calendar keeps you up to date with famous dates in history.

tag(s): art history (70), cultures (105), literacy (103)

In the Classroom

Use Edsitement for lesson ideas in language, history, literature, and cultures. Find multiple sources to give a deeper comprehension on the subject matter. In history classes, keep the ongoing calendar in your favorites to celebrate an important historical day every day. Lesson plans cover multiple grade levels in many different subject areas. Resources can enrich, or even to give further explanation to current topics of study.
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Zinn Education Project - Zinn Education Project

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6 to 12
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The Zinn Education Project provides teaching resources as a part of its effort to offer an alternative to traditional methods of teaching history. Inspired by the work of Howard Zinn,...more
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The Zinn Education Project provides teaching resources as a part of its effort to offer an alternative to traditional methods of teaching history. Inspired by the work of Howard Zinn, the site and its resources come from a clearly progressive point of view and focus heavily on issues of social justice. Understand there is a political agenda here. The website offers both lesson plans and other teaching materials and a bibliography of related books and other non-web-based resources. In order to access the teaching materials, you must register on the site.

tag(s): civil rights (117), hispanic (18), women (101)

In the Classroom

If you are looking for additional teaching materials that focus on issues of social justice, or which provide information from a progressive point of view, you can search by time period or theme (i.e. African American, LGBT, War and Anti-War, or Latino). The teaching materials are in PDF format you can download once you log in. Language arts teachers will find the articles here great for nonfiction reading and terrific as discussion starters!
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Tesla - Master of Lightning - PBS

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4 to 12
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Flash to PBS to get a bolt of learning about Nikola Tesla. Discover a compressive view of Tesla from his early years and his coming to America. Follow his ...more
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Flash to PBS to get a bolt of learning about Nikola Tesla. Discover a compressive view of Tesla from his early years and his coming to America. Follow his accomplishments while harnessing the Niagara. Discover the true mystery about who invented the radio. Trace his inventions and accomplishments. Inside the lab, discover the AC motor, the Tesla coil, radio, remote controls, and improved lightning. Resources include a timeline of electricity and radio, Tesla's patents, and articles about Tesla. Explore discussions from experts about Tesla's life and accomplishments. There are lesson plans for teachers. Some materials are for sale.

tag(s): electricity (89), energy (198), industrial revolution (25), inventors and inventions (101), motion (59), radio (27)

In the Classroom

Add intrigue and mystery, to your science unit on electricity, motion, or inventors as you study the life and accomplishments of Nikola Tesla. Excellent lesson plans include a concrete understanding of potential energy, mechanical energy to electrical energy. Use on an interactive white board to begin your unit or create a "Who Dunnit" with electricity or radio. Follow the structure of ideas presented to create an online "famous scientist" wiki, blog or PowerPoint to add to your class website. Use a Socratic seminar to debate which scientist should get credit for the induction motor, radio, and even the Industrial Revolution. Use the readings for older students, advanced readers, or gifted students, as they are far above the reading level of elementary and early middle school students. In language arts, writing topics could include "What a shock electricity is in my life" and "Will the true inventor of electricity please stand up?" The ideas and resources are electrifying!
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Articles- PlanetSEED - Schlumberger Excellence in Educational Development, Inc.

Grades
5 to 10
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SEED's collection of science articles are clear, age-appropriate, and thought-provoking for minds that may not want to read about science. Young readers can connect science to their...more
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SEED's collection of science articles are clear, age-appropriate, and thought-provoking for minds that may not want to read about science. Young readers can connect science to their own world of medicine and climate change as most of them have had a cold or experienced a hot day. The History of Medicine and Global Climate Change collections are fantastic. Each article also reveals links to further readings in related concepts. This is excellent for increasing literacy in science (think Common Core) or improving a young reader's ability to process and comprehend informational, nonfiction text.

tag(s): climate change (64), energy (198), genetics (90), medicine (67), solar energy (38)

In the Classroom

Use articles as alternatives to textbook reading assignments. As informational text, this reading is more exciting and easier than the average printed textbook for students. You may want to have students read and reflect in their science journals or on their science blog. You might consider using Throwww, reviewed here, which requires no sign up. They could write a short response as an entrance or exit "ticket," depending upon when you choose to assign the reading. History and world cultures teachers will also find useful articles about people and places that students could use to connect with locations they are studying and with current events.

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Congressional Timeline - Congressional Timeline

Grades
8 to 12
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Use The Congressional Timeline to look each Congress's activity beginning with the 73rd (in 1933) up until the present. We sometimes forget "Congress" is not a single entity, and ...more
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Use The Congressional Timeline to look each Congress's activity beginning with the 73rd (in 1933) up until the present. We sometimes forget "Congress" is not a single entity, and there have been over 110 Congresses since the founding of the United States. This is a fairly bare bones site, but with some helpful components. The most interesting is the ability to compare the actions of congress along the top timeline, with major events in history along the bottom timeline. What happened? What did Congress do? The events are all click-able and provide either a brief explanation or links to further information. Another useful function is the ability to filter results by keyword, which eliminates everything not associated with that keyword from the timelines. Also helpful is the ability to highlight events along the timelines by keyword. The keyword fields are completely open, so you will need to experiment a little with your word choice in order to return the most useful results. The timeline is also convenient for research in that it reduces legislative activity to an easy to access summary.

tag(s): branches of government (48), congress (33)

In the Classroom

Although this site is not the most visually exciting, it would still be useful on an interactive whiteboard, particularly when you are discussing a defined time period. Select the relevant Congress, then compare the legislative activity with world events. For example, choose a Congress during wartime, and highlight events related to war or the military. As elections approach, use the timelines to compare the activities of a previous Congress during "election season" to see if there are patterns of Congressional behavior.

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Projeqt - Dynamic Presentations for a Real-Time World - Pilot.is.

Grades
8 to 12
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Looking for a quick and easy way to share dynamic presentations? Try Projeqt! This is a simple tool with onscreen, embedded instruction (i.e.drag here). Update previously created presentations...more
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Looking for a quick and easy way to share dynamic presentations? Try Projeqt! This is a simple tool with onscreen, embedded instruction (i.e.drag here). Update previously created presentations by uploading images, documents, and PDF files, video, or create slides from scratch. See your Projeqt as a film strip or in grid view, and there's a full-screen option, too. Add a Google map, Flickr page, and more! Projeqt aims to establish itself above other presentation tools through the direct integration of social media dynamics, and that it certainly does! Unlike many web tools, this one works on mobile devices, including iPads and iPhones. Here is a simple sample Projeqt.

tag(s): multimedia (57), slides (63), social networking (112)

In the Classroom

Use this presentation tool to have students express themselves creatively in your classroom. Have them share their projects with Projeqt as an alternative to a writing assignment or other traditional method. Set requirements for how much and what types of information they must have, and watch what they develop. They may just surprise you! Have students create end of year portfolios to share during spring fairs or open houses. Save Projeqts for fall open house to share the work students will be doing! Students can present in person or link their presentations to a media site that has a recording of them giving a summary. This could also be used to showcase a long-term community service project or show off a season's accomplishments for a sports team.

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Today's Document - Jon White Studio

Grades
6 to 12
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Today's Document is an excellent daily history site based on an RSS feed from the National Archives. This specific page comes up on Constitution Day. Cartoons illustrate the history...more
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Today's Document is an excellent daily history site based on an RSS feed from the National Archives. This specific page comes up on Constitution Day. Cartoons illustrate the history of the document, and link each drawing to the original, primary source document on National Archives with an invitation to dig deeper. Search the archives for previous entries or scroll back through daily cartoons. Explanations often include links to further historical information or click on included tags for similar resources. This site includes documents for several days each month. The site seems to have stopped in 2010, but you can browse back through many valuable documents and explanations, since the "originals" being discussed are historic, not current.

tag(s): american revolution (86), civil war (145), constitution (79), jefferson (19), lincoln (86), presidents (131), segregation (15), washington (36)

In the Classroom

Today's Document would make a fantastic discussion starter in any classroom. It is an interesting, visual way for students to acquire background knowledge about American history and/or the Constitution and government. You may want to display a document on your interactive whiteboard as a bell-ringer (opener) activity, or as a story starter in English class. Cover up the cartoon explanation, and ask students to discuss events that they think took place. In U.S.history, government, or civics classes, use the site as an example, then challenge students to create their own comics to explain a topic using comic-creation tools from this TeachersFirst collection.

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Fold U.S. Candidate - Adi Marom

Grades
2 to 12
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Fold a US Candidate is a site that has paper foldable puppets of the US candidates for the 2008 election; however, it is still useful as a resource for templates ...more
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Fold a US Candidate is a site that has paper foldable puppets of the US candidates for the 2008 election; however, it is still useful as a resource for templates for President Obama and Mrs. Obama as well as other famous politicians: Biden, Clinton, Palin, McCain, etc.. Choose a person , click on the name, and the template will open in a new window ready to print in PDF format. There are instructions for cutting and folding, or watch a video demonstrating proper cutting and folding.

tag(s): elections (75), politics (99), presidents (131)

In the Classroom

Use the foldable puppets when studying presidents or during your election unit. Share with students who are preparing presentations of political figures. You can also use this idea to create current candidate foldables from photos. If your students have simple movie making software such as iMovie, they could even act out campaign speeches, interviews, or debates and record them on video. Art teachers may want to use the templates as a guide for students who may want to try creating their own foldable puppets.
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Martin Luther King Jr. and the Global Freedom Struggle - Martin Luther King, Jr., Research & Education Institute

Grades
3 to 12
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This is a one stop shop index for all things about Martin Luther King Jr. and the Civil Rights Movement. Resources include encyclopedias, chronologies, transcribed documents, quotes...more
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This is a one stop shop index for all things about Martin Luther King Jr. and the Civil Rights Movement. Resources include encyclopedias, chronologies, transcribed documents, quotes and audio files of Dr. King's speeches.

tag(s): civil rights (117), martin luther king (37), rosa parks (6)

In the Classroom

This is a perfect place to send students for research. Have students use the timeline to find about important dates in civil rights history. Use the encyclopedia to not only learn about civil rights champions, but about organizations of that time.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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The Anne Frank Trust UK-Her Story, Today's World * - The Anne Frank Trust UK

Grades
8 to 12
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Here you will find information about Anne Frank and her father. The Anne Frank Trust UK is the partner organization of the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam whose mission is ...more
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Here you will find information about Anne Frank and her father. The Anne Frank Trust UK is the partner organization of the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam whose mission is to draw on the power of Anne Frank's life and diary to challenge prejudice and reduce hatred, encouraging people to embrace positive attitudes, responsibility and respect for others. The Exhibitions and the Schools and Communities Projects, intended for the UK, cost money. However, the news and resources links are free to download and have valuable up-to-date information and sources to take advantage of in your classroom.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): anne frank (10), holocaust (39), jews (20), nazis (10), remembrance day (6), women (101), world war 2 (142)

In the Classroom

Use the powerful messages drawn from the story of Anne Frank to help foster an understanding among today's teenagers of positive citizenship, human rights, democracy and respect for the individual. Log on to this site and click on the resources tab. This section provides critical, relevant information about how to teach Anne Frank's story, the history of the Holocaust, and contemporary issues related to these subjects. You can click on the links and download resources to accompany the drama, The Diary of Anne Frank, and download the PowerPoint to project on your whiteboard. The slide show is an in-depth look at the difference made by Anne's father, Otto Frank, 50 years after the doors of the Anne Frank House opened to the public. Your class can then take the pledge, detailed on the last slide of the PowerPoint presentation, to stand up against prejudice and hatred and defend those who cannot defend themselves. Have students or student groups create an online, interactive poster known as a "glog," using GlogsterEDU, reviewed here of the pledge to sign. Display it on your class wiki or webpage to share with families.
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Ottobib - Jonathan Otto

Grades
3 to 12
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Make a free, easy, "ottomatic" bibliography with Ottobib.com. Type in the ISBN number of any book (without the dashes), choose the style, MLA, APA, Chicago, or Bibtex, and create your...more
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Make a free, easy, "ottomatic" bibliography with Ottobib.com. Type in the ISBN number of any book (without the dashes), choose the style, MLA, APA, Chicago, or Bibtex, and create your perfect book citation. You can also enter multiple books by inserting a comma between the ISBN numbers. Select from linking to the bibliography, having a printed page, or finding at your library through a link to Worldcat, an online library catalog.

tag(s): book reports (35), citations (34)

In the Classroom

Use Ottobib.com as a lesson on citing sources and bibliography on your interactive whiteboard. Include Ottobib.com as a saved favorite on all student computers as well as a link on your webpage. Use as a springboard to discuss styles of documentation including MLA, APA, Chicago, and Bibtex. Be sure to use in writing your own professional articles, books, or classes, as well as a reference for your students.

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Now I See! Infographics as content scaffold and creative, formative assessment - TeachersFirst: Candace Hackett Shively and Louise Maine

Grades
6 to 12
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Discover how to use student-created infographics as scaffold or assessment for learning in any middle or high school subject. Many teachers are not "visual" people and struggle to implement...more
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Discover how to use student-created infographics as scaffold or assessment for learning in any middle or high school subject. Many teachers are not "visual" people and struggle to implement infographics because they do not know how to help students. Whether you are a visual person or a "data" person, these pages will help your class get started. See the story of one teacher's journey into using infographics and learn from her experience. Find downloadable files to help: a PowerPoint you can use with students, and a customizable rubric. Don't miss the extensive Resources and Tools page for examples, background articles, and more. These pages grew out of a presentation at ISTE 2012.

tag(s): infographics (42)

In the Classroom

Read through this professional tutorial if you have even considered trying infographics with your students. You will find just the encouragement you need. Mark this one in your Favorites and share the many examples with your students, including student-created examples from a ninth grade class, as you launch your own infographics projects. Let your students "show what they know" in a new way.

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Wikipedia Race - Wikipedia

Grades
6 to 12
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Concerned that Wikipedia doesn't encourage higher-level thinking or is just the lazy way out? Here is a novel use for Wikipedia that teaches intellectual flexibility and creativity,...more
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Concerned that Wikipedia doesn't encourage higher-level thinking or is just the lazy way out? Here is a novel use for Wikipedia that teaches intellectual flexibility and creativity, and it's a whole lot of fun! While the site does all the set up for you, Wikipedia races require only a couple of computers and the Internet. Here's how it works. Choose as the destination a topic or word that has its own Wikipedia page. Try things like "apple pie" or "quilts" or nearly anything. Each "racer" goes to the Wikipedia main page and chooses "random article," and this page becomes his or her start page. The object of the challenge is to get from the random start page to the destination page by clicking on the hyperlinks within Wikipedia pages. No searching, just clicking. To make it more challenging, make some of the most broadly aggregated pages (like "United States" for example) off limits. First racer to the destination page wins. An example? Imagine your random start page is the biography page of a NASCAR driver, and your destination is "flashlight." One possible pathway might go from driver to automobile to car battery, to C battery, to flashlight.

tag(s): creative fluency (8), creativity (109), trivia (17)

In the Classroom

Wikipedia Races reward thinking that is divergent and flexible. Rather than having to narrowly focus on one right answer, racers win when they can generate lots of different associations among disparate ideas or items. Use Wikipedia Races when you have a little time left at the end of the period. A single race will last only 3 to 5 minutes for older students. It can be an individual competition among two or more racers, or students can work in small teams with one student at the mouse taking suggestions from the team. Consider being strategic with your destination pages, choosing topics related to your unit lesson, so students will need to have a broad understanding of those topics. ESL/ELL teachers can use this as a vocabulary development activity.

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Film Story - Mnemonic Productions

Grades
3 to 12
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Film Story is a great listing of history films searchable by country, era, subject, and film type (feature film, documentary, or mini-series). Another helpful feature is when you roll...more
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Film Story is a great listing of history films searchable by country, era, subject, and film type (feature film, documentary, or mini-series). Another helpful feature is when you roll your cursor over the map, the region and how many films are available will pop up. Film Story's goal is to help you learn more about historical people, places, and events through film. Once you click on a film, you see the era, type of film, etc. and several themes. All of these are links to other films in these categories. Film story is simply a directory. Search out the films you find on your favorite search engine and borrow them from a library or video store. No registration required to use this site.

tag(s): afghanistan (7), africa (180), asia (73), black history (59), central america (13), china (66), cross cultural understanding (115), europe (75), middle east (30), movies (65), north america (19)

In the Classroom

Discover videos on Film Story to help build prior knowledge and illustrate what students are learning in history or world languages/cultures classes. Find several films and have small groups of students view them. Have students become "eyewitnesses" to history and watch the video assigned to them before they have a context for it. Then have them write or blog about what they think they are witnessing. Afterward they can research the event in more depth and write a follow-up reflection on what was actually happening in the video. Challenge your students to use a site such as Timetoast reviewed here, to create timelines of topics researched on the site. Use images from public domain sites, such as the collections reviewed here, to illustrate the events.

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Venngage - Venngage

Grades
7 to 12
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Like the looks of Infographics but wish it were as easy as creating a Powerpoint? This website aims to empower you to easily create infographics in a short time. It ...more
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Like the looks of Infographics but wish it were as easy as creating a Powerpoint? This website aims to empower you to easily create infographics in a short time. It is worth the free registration to gain access. Create beautiful Infographics by creating a title and then choosing a template or color scheme. Create your own templates using a range of color, label, and font choices. Click on the elements on the template to change the words, add widgets, create charts, and more. Use the slider along the top right to move between edit mode and preview mode. Go beyond traditional charts by including word clouds, treemaps, bubble charts, and more. Click Save as Template (helpful in creating labels and examples for students to follow) to save your style for later. Click Publish to make the Infographic public or private. You can save the Infographic as an image, share via URL, or use an embed code to place on a wiki, site, or blog. Click on your dashboard to view additional templates shared by creators and to find your Infographics.

tag(s): data (148), infographics (42), posters (36), vocabulary (324)

In the Classroom

Consider creating Infographics of material learned in class and for better understanding and connection with other topics and the "real world." Make curriculum content more real with infographics that students can relate to. Have students create their own infographics with this site to display what they have learned from a unit of study, how vocabulary words are related to the unit content, or as a review before a test. It could even be a replacement for the test! Connect data found on the Internet to information needed to understand that data. (Consider looking at different ways to show the data which can generate bias.) Use your interactive whiteboard or projector to allow student groups to present an Infographic about a book they've read, related news article, etc. Create Infographics about events such as Earth Day, D-Day, Take Your Child to Work Day, and other observances.

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Four Directions Teaching - 4D Interactive Inc.

Grades
5 to 12
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A Canadian site focused on five "first nations" central to Canada's history, Four Directions Teaching, uses Flash technology to create a visually beautiful site about the Blackfoot,...more
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A Canadian site focused on five "first nations" central to Canada's history, Four Directions Teaching, uses Flash technology to create a visually beautiful site about the Blackfoot, Cree, Ojibwe, Mohawk, and Mi'kmaq tribes. There are also extensive teacher resources, sorted by challenge level, to download, a photo collection, audio narration, and printables. These resources are appropriate not only for use by Canadians, but also for understanding the development of Native American culture throughout North America. (The Native Americans preceded any national boundaries!). Technical notes point out that you need to allow pop=ups from this site.

tag(s): canada (30), cross cultural understanding (115), cultures (105), native americans (78)

In the Classroom

The series of animated mini lessons are perfect for use on an interactive whiteboard (or projector) and help anchor the learning activities available for download. They could also be used as stand-alone resources to complement lessons you have designed. You might choose to look at creation myths across the various tribes or how each culture constructed shelters or conducted ceremonies. These themes make the lessons useful even for those not studying specifically Canadian history. Have students make a multimedia presentation on a chosen topic using one of the many TeachersFirst Edge tools reviewed here.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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