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Research Building Blocks - Read, Write, Think - International Reading Association

Grades
3 to 12
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This site offers a complete lesson plan to use with students prior to beginning a first research project. The lesson takes students through the process of analyzing book titles to ...more
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This site offers a complete lesson plan to use with students prior to beginning a first research project. The lesson takes students through the process of analyzing book titles to determine ones that would be helpful in their research. It then builds on class discussion to enable students to make informed decisions on appropriate research material. One especially useful part of the lesson is the Hints About Print interactive link included in the lesson plan. This would be a wonderful site to use on your interactive whiteboard to lead the class through basics of choosing materials for research. Other useful items on the site are the nonfiction book reviews and nonfiction book evaluation forms that are available in pdf form for easy classroom use. Find all resources and print material by choosing the Resources and Preparation tab near the top of the page.

tag(s): book reports (35), interactive stories (32)

In the Classroom

View the Hints About Print interactive with your class on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) to demonstrate different concepts on choosing appropriate resources for research. If you don't have an interactive whiteboard, create a link on your classroom computers for students to view as a center. This site is perfect to use with older students who may have already done research projects as a review for choosing materials. ESL and Special Education teachers may want to use materials included in this lesson as an aid for students who have been assigned research projects.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Stich - Stich.it

Grades
K to 12
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Stich.it is a new link-shortening service that lets you combine several links into one and then plays them like a slideshow. View examples shown on the site. Some have descriptive ...more
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Stich.it is a new link-shortening service that lets you combine several links into one and then plays them like a slideshow. View examples shown on the site. Some have descriptive text found at the top of each slide and written by the user. Follow the helpful information along the side for using Stich.

tag(s): bookmarks (60)

In the Classroom

Use Stich.it for Internet scavenger hunts. Create a Stich with all the links needed to complete a project or for the entire unit. Students can create a Stich that showcases the websites that they used to complete an assignment or project. Use this with even the youngest students by sharing a Stich on your class website for students and parents to explore. Make a Stich of sites to learn to count, a stich for sites to learn the branches of government, a stich of sites to learn about tough biology concepts, a stich of sites to practice trigonometry, and pretty much anything else you can imagine!

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Tin Eye - Idee Inc.

Grades
K to 12
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Use Tineye as a reverse image search engine. Tineye's unique image search engine looks for the same actual image -- not the description. This is a great way to ...more
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Use Tineye as a reverse image search engine. Tineye's unique image search engine looks for the same actual image -- not the description. This is a great way to find out where else an image is in use on the Internet. To use this simple and free service: upload or enter the link to an image on the Internet. Tineye will search the Internet to find the same image even if it has been rotated, altered or cropped by using image recognition technology. What a terrific way to discover the origin of an image or find those using it without permission. Note that the maximum upload size is 1 MB. Use this free service without registering. Create an account to use other features such as saving your searches. Registration does require email verification. Download the applet for Firefox or Chrome for ability to instantly use the service. You must have the ability to install browser add-ons to use the add-on version of the tool.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): images (266), photography (160), plagiarism (35), search engines (65)

In the Classroom

This tool is best used by a teacher to determine whether class pictures have been used elsewhere or determine the origin of pictures students have used in projects. Check the origin of student-used pictures to determine source. Determine whether pictures (yours or others) have been used without permission. Easily determine whether pictures have also been altered.

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Teachers' Domain - Teachers' Domain

Grades
K to 12
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Teachers' Domain is a free digital media service for educational use. All of the material are from public broadcasting and its partners. This site aggregates thousands of media rich...more
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Teachers' Domain is a free digital media service for educational use. All of the material are from public broadcasting and its partners. This site aggregates thousands of media rich resources like lessons, videos, learning games and professional development resources. All resources can be found by subject area. In addition, each subject has sub areas to help you refine your search even more. You are allowed 7 views of material without registering.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): professional development (123), resources (112), teaching strategies (24)

In the Classroom

Use this site to find activities and resources for all subject areas. Use the games and videos with a projector or interactive whiteboard. Use the learning interactives as a center for students to access or put on your classroom website or blog. Teachers you can also use the professional development area for previews of available online courses (cost) and lots of handouts on different teaching strategies.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Shelfari - Amazon

Grades
4 to 12
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Shelfari is a community-powered encyclopedia for book lovers. Create a virtual bookshelf, discover new books, connect with friends, and learn more about your favorite books. You can...more
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Shelfari is a community-powered encyclopedia for book lovers. Create a virtual bookshelf, discover new books, connect with friends, and learn more about your favorite books. You can read, write and edit plot summaries, popular quotes, character descriptions and more than a dozen other types of book factoids. The site can be searched without registration; however, free registration is required to create a virtual bookshelf. (Although they do not openly "advertise," Amazon obviously hopes this site will inspire you to buy more books. If you feel so moved, we hope you will make your purchase by entering through the Amazon search at the bottom of this page so TeachersFirst can benefit from the donations Amazon makes to our non-profit service as a result of your purchase.)
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): book lists (128), book reports (35), independent reading (128)

In the Classroom

Before or after reading classroom novels, pull up the book on your interactive whiteboard or projector to view what others have written about the book. Create a classroom account and your own virtual bookshelf as a resource for students to find books that they will enjoy. Create different bookshelves by subject, genre, etc. Show this site on your interactive whiteboard to demonstrate how to use the site and find books of interest. Use examples on the site, then have students create their own book summaries (using this site's format) using Google Docs reviewed here. Add the Shelfari widget to your classroom website or blog for easy access for students.

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Sign up genius - Skylark Productions

Grades
K to 12
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Create private or public sign ups for easy creation of snack lists, volunteer sheets, party planners, parent/teacher conference planning, or project preparation. Sign up for free using...more
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Create private or public sign ups for easy creation of snack lists, volunteer sheets, party planners, parent/teacher conference planning, or project preparation. Sign up for free using an email address (email verification not required.) View your created sign ups under "My Account." Be sure to view the Frequently Asked Questions for help in using this simple resource. Find complete guides for an even smoother sign up process under the "Planning Resources" tab. Follow the directions for creating your sign up including all the details. "Invite" and "Publish" to set your privacy options as well as enter the email information to send to others. Add a web button to your site to take users directly to your home page to find active sign ups (find this function under "My Account").

tag(s): charts and graphs (195)

In the Classroom

The possibilities are endless. Use this for planning parties, bringing in materials for projects, and any other activity that requires coordination. If you have limited technology availability, this is a great way for teachers or students to sign up for time slots to use laptops, iPads, video cameras, or a podcast recording station. Go paperless with your signups! Share this tool at Back to School night (and with your room parent or PTO). Organize your parent/teacher conferences. Plan student research of class projects using this resource. Help students build organizational skills by having them "plan" a mythical event such as a museum opening for their Famous Americans exhibit.

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Quizbreak - Michigan State Center for Language Education and Research

Grades
2 to 12
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Create Jeopardy style games that are hosted online. Add images, video, and audio to each "answer." Use of this resource requires registration (email verification required). Click on...more
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Create Jeopardy style games that are hosted online. Add images, video, and audio to each "answer." Use of this resource requires registration (email verification required). Click on each square, enter text, images, video, or audio and click OK. Use the URL to share with others to play.

tag(s): grammar review (37), quiz (84), quizzes (96)

In the Classroom

This would be a fantastic way to find out what students know about a topic prior to studying in class. Use this as a review, to learn vocabulary, or for rich learning opportunities. Have students create their own games/activities to share with the class. Learning support students would respond well to creating review games rather than doing "traditional" review.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Print what you like - printwhatyoulike.com

Grades
K to 12
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Hate to waste paper? Use this free resource to print web pages without wasted white space, ads, or extra pages. Enter the URL (web address) of the website you wish ...more
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Hate to waste paper? Use this free resource to print web pages without wasted white space, ads, or extra pages. Enter the URL (web address) of the website you wish to print, rearrange the elements, and print! To rearrange, edit the items on the left navigation bar. Choose to show or hide the background, images, or margins. Change the font or font size. Save your changes as a pdf for later viewing. Create an account for more features such as "change sets" which allow your formatting options to be applied to other pages from the same website and clips. Use the clips or pieces from various web pages to create a simple page that houses them all. Add the bookmarklet to your browser by simply dragging it to your toolbar. Be sure to check out the demo and videos.

tag(s): conservation (127)

In the Classroom

Use in the classroom to save paper and printing ink. Teach students to remove unwanted images and change margins to fit the content on a page. Be sure students save the page as a pdf to view and print again later if needed. Model an environmentally friendly classroom with the use of this resource. Be sure to check with your tech department on the ability to add bookmarklets to the browser toolbar. This resource can be used without signing up - a bonus for the classroom! Use this when technology access is low or you want to print an activity for students to do when you are not there to supervise the technology use. Create in-class reading from blogs or other websites appropriate for your classroom. Make a pdf that can be opened on your interactive whiteboard without all the ads and clutter of the web page so students can annotate, highlight, and even practice reading comprehension skills such as "main idea." List this link on your class website for families to try at home! Use it to share articles with parents, as well--as long as you model proper behavior by giving credit. Best practice ALWAYS includes a url and title/author on any printed article from the web.
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CurriConnects: Explorers - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 9
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Use this CurriConnects list to find books related to Explorers. CurriConnects thematic book lists include ISBN numbers for ordering or searching, interest grade levels, ESL levels and...more
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Use this CurriConnects list to find books related to Explorers. CurriConnects thematic book lists include ISBN numbers for ordering or searching, interest grade levels, ESL levels and Lexiles''''® to match with student independent reading levels to challenge, not frustrate. Don't miss other CurriConnects themes being added regularly.

tag(s): book lists (128), explorers (61), reading lists (75)

In the Classroom

Build student literacy skills, reinforce what students are learning about Explorers, and help students build the important reading strategy of connecting what they read to prior (classroom!) knowledge. Share this link on your class web page or wiki so students can select independent reading books to accompany your unit on Explorers. Don't forget to share the list with the school and local libraries so they can bring in some of the books on interlibrary loan. CurriConnects are a great help for teachers who have lost school library/media specialists due to budget cuts.

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Learn About Oklahoma - State of Oklahoma

Grades
3 to 12
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Did you know that Oklahoma has produced more astronauts than any other state? It's true, find out other interesting facts and state information at the Learn About Oklahoma site. ...more
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Did you know that Oklahoma has produced more astronauts than any other state? It's true, find out other interesting facts and state information at the Learn About Oklahoma site. The site's home page is deceptively simple, in fact there is a great deal of interesting information located within each of the links. Choose the link for the Oklahoma Student's Guide to find state symbols, quick facts, and an interesting history timeline. Learn about famous famous natives of the state at the corresponding link and be sure to choose the link to the list of famous Oklahomans. This pdf list is several pages long and lists many famous state natives identified by categories including athletes, outlaws, and too unique to be classified.

tag(s): native americans (78), states (162)

In the Classroom

Share this site with students to demonstrate how to navigate the site, then allow students to explore on their own. Have students create an online book of images and captions about Oklahama using bookr (reviewed here.) (Bookr uses Flickr images, so you must first upload or find the images on Flickr). Have students create trading cards with information about famous Oklahoma natives as part of their state research.
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Ohio Kids - History for Kids - Ohio Historical Society

Grades
4 to 8
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Take a virtual tour of historical places throughout Ohio with this kid-friendly site. Hover your mouse over different images on the home page to view options for exploration. Choose...more
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Take a virtual tour of historical places throughout Ohio with this kid-friendly site. Hover your mouse over different images on the home page to view options for exploration. Choose Site Safari and have a choice of exploring archaeological, history, or natural sites in the state. Each location includes a short explanation of the area and many also include an image. Be sure to find TellzAll, each month TellzAll, the history wizard will show an object commonly used in 20th century Ohio but is now rarely found. There is a great deal of information on this site and it may not be readily seen so be sure to explore and find all that there is to offer!

tag(s): archeology (32), natural resources (59), states (162), virtual field trips (48)

In the Classroom

Share this site on your interactive whiteboard to show students how to navigate the icons and links then allow them to explore on their own. To show what they have learned from this site, challenge students to create an online graphic to share using Tabblo reviewed here. Have students create scavenger hunts for other students to use when exploring the site.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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New York State for Kids - New York State Department of Economic Development

Grades
3 to 8
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This site includes activities and fun facts that help students learn about the state of New York. The state facts list includes some interesting items such as the highest mountains...more
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This site includes activities and fun facts that help students learn about the state of New York. The state facts list includes some interesting items such as the highest mountains and waterfalls, number of miles in the barge canal system, and the longest river in the state. Some items also include links to pictures. The history of New York is divided into two sections - pre and post 1900. Information included is fairly sparse but may be a good starting point for further research. The site includes a crossword puzzle, word search, and word scramble with New York words and information. Be sure to check out the state facts portion of the site to find state symbols and interesting facts.

tag(s): new york (26), rivers (21), states (162)

In the Classroom

Copy the crossword puzzle on the site for students, then have them explore the site to find answers. Share this site with students as they work on state research projects. To show what they have learned from this site, challenge students to create an online graphic to share using Tabblo reviewed here.

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New Mexico Kids - New Mexico Tourism Department

Grades
3 to 12
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Sing songs, learn about animal tracks, play games, watch movies, and trade historical character cards with your friends at this site that helps kids learn about New Mexico. The site...more
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Sing songs, learn about animal tracks, play games, watch movies, and trade historical character cards with your friends at this site that helps kids learn about New Mexico. The site is divided into four sections for easy navigation, choices include Learn, Play, Enjoy, and Share. Students will especially "enjoy" watching movies, singing songs, and reading (or hearing) stories from Old New Mexico. You can "learn" about state symbols, animals, and ghosts by exploring this section of the site. A unique feature of the site is the printable trading cards featuring famous New Mexicans that are available in PDF format for easy use.

tag(s): hispanic (18), native americans (78), states (162)

In the Classroom

Share this site with students on your interactive whiteboard, then let them explore on their own. Print out the trading cards and/or stories for students to read and share during Guided Reading time. Have students create their own trading cards featuring animals, state symbols, or other information included on the site. Have students or student groups create an online, interactive poster using Web Poster Wizard (reviewed here) featuring information found on the site.
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NebraskaStudies.org - Nebraska State Historical Society

Grades
4 to 12
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This well-done site offers teachers, students, and history buffs access to archival photos, documents, letters, video segments, maps, and more,"'''? capturing the life and history of...more
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This well-done site offers teachers, students, and history buffs access to archival photos, documents, letters, video segments, maps, and more,"'''? capturing the life and history of Nebraska from pre-1500 to the present. Several options are available for exploring content on the site. Choose from the timeline at the top of the page to discover events from pre-1500 through the present. After choosing a time period, you are taken to a new timeline with just that period that includes Nebraska, National, and International events for that period in a stacked timeline making it easy to view timing of all events. There is also a very useful Table of Contents with items listed in chronological order along with the number of teacher activities and/or lessons to use with events listed. Lesson plans and activities are thorough and include grade levels addressed in the lesson, relevant content information, and correlation to Nebraska state standards. All in pdf format for easy downloading and printing. The main page of the site also includes a link to their latest additions. This site is a must see not only for Nebraska teachers, but any teachers of Social Studies.

tag(s): native americans (78), railroads (10), states (162)

In the Classroom

Share this site on your interactive whiteboard with students then allow them time to explore on their own. Share this site with students who are performing research for state projects, American History, or international events. Have students or student groups create an online, interactive poster using Web Poster Wizard (reviewed here) showing information learned from the site. Use the international and national timelines on the site to research important world events.
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The History of Thanksgiving and its Celebrations - Holidays on the Net

Grades
K to 6
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Welcome to your one stop holiday shop filled with a plethora of Thanksgiving ideas. Information, stories, recipes, blogs, crafts and Ecards fill the site. Fun facts and folklore give...more
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Welcome to your one stop holiday shop filled with a plethora of Thanksgiving ideas. Information, stories, recipes, blogs, crafts and Ecards fill the site. Fun facts and folklore give the extras you might not even know about. Presidential proclamations from the past five presidents give insight into our country historical perspectives and first hand information. Videos of recipes from the appetizers to the desserts help give a detailed explanation to make the perfect dish. An interactive fun game of Turkey Bowl puts you in the Thanksgiving spirit. This is a great site for much needed Thanksgiving information and celebrations.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): blogs (88), crafts (40), thanksgiving (37)

In the Classroom

Lead your students to this site filled with information. Research can determine the many myths and true information about Thanksgiving. Allow students to plan and make parts of their Thanksgiving feast. Find fun activities, crafts, decorations to make your celebration perfect with your students and families. Add at a center for timely fun information and research time. Link this to your class website or wiki for parent information and extensions at home.

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Plimoth Plantation - Plimoth Plantation

Grades
3 to 8
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Plimoth Plantation (That's the original spelling) is a reconstruction of the Pilgrim settlement at Plymouth. Take a field trip to the Plimoth Plantation just in time for Thanksgiving....more
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Plimoth Plantation (That's the original spelling) is a reconstruction of the Pilgrim settlement at Plymouth. Take a field trip to the Plimoth Plantation just in time for Thanksgiving. Take a virtual field trip to an English village and Wampanoag home site from 1627. Go inside a Wetu, or home, and look. Become a historian and uncover what really happened in the first Thanksgiving. Primary sources give accounts from the Wampanoag traditions to the English home of Pilgrim Mary Allerton. Each student will finish with a printed exhibition panel. Dig into your ancestry to find out if you are a pilgrim. Find actual genealogical profiles. Explore the museum collections of artifacts.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): colonial america (107), pilgrims (17), thanksgiving (37)

In the Classroom

Change the commercial traditions of tradition and bring on a study of history. Fascinating worlds of primary resources are at your computer! Virtual field trips, historical sleuthing, genealogy, and so much more. Challenge your students to take a closer look and decide for themselves. Debate information lines the pages of this website. Study history not false information. Share this and other sections of the TeachersFirst Colonial America tour as part of your study of the colonies so students can see what these historic locations look like today.
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The Real Story of Thanksgiving - Manataka American Indian Council

Grades
3 to 6
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This site offers three stories about the "Real Story of Thanksgiving." Discover the real story of Thanksgiving, a teacher introduction, and the Plymouth Thanksgiving Story. The Manatake...more
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This site offers three stories about the "Real Story of Thanksgiving." Discover the real story of Thanksgiving, a teacher introduction, and the Plymouth Thanksgiving Story. The Manatake are trying to preserve and protect their history and place of worship. Find fascinating information on Thanksgiving from a different perspective.

tag(s): native americans (78), thanksgiving (37)

In the Classroom

Challenge your students to take a different point of view on Thanksgiving. Follow the historical information of the Manatake to see their Thanksgiving story. Lead students through a Socratic seminar to think about who really was thankful. Why should the people at the time celebrate? Write essays using reflections on the purpose of reflection and celebration. Determine if similar situations still exist today. Lead your students to a service-learning project to help others.

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Legends and Stories to Share for Thanksgiving - Apples 4 the Teacher

Grades
K to 6
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Discover a fun site just in time for Thanksgiving! Several short stories provide nice, short comprehension passages. Thanksgiving articles and tips provide helpful information on stress,...more
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Discover a fun site just in time for Thanksgiving! Several short stories provide nice, short comprehension passages. Thanksgiving articles and tips provide helpful information on stress, parties, meals, centerpieces, and crafts. Thanksgiving stories, books, and reading activities add academic content to the holiday. Learning activities add new lesson ideas. A thematic unit provides Native American games, poems, reading lists, and jigsaw puzzles. Enjoy your Thanksgiving holiday in school.
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tag(s): crafts (40), holidays (147), native americans (78), poetry (228), puzzles (208), reading lists (75), thanksgiving (37)

In the Classroom

Be prepared for the Thanksgiving holiday with the ones you are thankful for, your students! Enjoy the academic content and party ideas to make it the best Thanksgiving yet!

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Decide Already - Sprout Box

Grades
3 to 12
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Decision-making is easy and fun with this online tool. Just submit a question, propose answers, send out the question to peers, and wait for responses. Criteria to be included in ...more
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Decision-making is easy and fun with this online tool. Just submit a question, propose answers, send out the question to peers, and wait for responses. Criteria to be included in responses can also be added to help respondents make informed decisions. After the question is set up, add contact emails to send out the question. This probably works best with students that have school email accounts already set up for use.

tag(s): polls and surveys (48), questioning (31)

In the Classroom

Teach one of the highest levels of Bloom's Taxonomy (evaluating) using this tool. Have s student operator open it on a projector or interactive whiteboard and have the class determine criteria for decision making, such as how to choose the best location for a field trip or decide on the best book to read. Ask how they choose books for independent reading, and have them develop their own criteria as a class. Send out questions for students to decide on classroom events such as field trips - offer 2 or 3 choices along with criteria to consider when choosing. Offer to allow students to choose the next read-aloud book to be used in the classroom, choose student of the week or month recipients, activities for classroom parties, etc. Use this site to start a class debate on historical choices that may be considered controversial (i.e the use of the atomic bomb). Share this with other staff in your building and use the site to make decisions on professional development topics, dates for get-togethers and more. Include this link on your class website for groups to use in making project decisions or to simulate political process and the ways legislators make decisions.

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North Carolina...for kids! - State of North Carolina, Office of the Governor

Grades
2 to 6
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Play, Learn, and Explore this site to learn all about the state of North Carolina with kid-friendly content. Although the home page is deceptively simple looking, the site is packed...more
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Play, Learn, and Explore this site to learn all about the state of North Carolina with kid-friendly content. Although the home page is deceptively simple looking, the site is packed with information and activities for students of all ages. The "Learn" portion provides geographic and historic information as well as facts about the government. There is even a dog page with information about the state's first dogs! Choose the "Play" link to find the words to the state song, word games, and coloring books. Unfortunately, a few links are broken on this page leading to historical sites in the state; however, it is worth exploring to view the information, interactives, and activities. Another portion of the site, "Links," provides links to other sites with interesting North Carolina information such as the Department of Agriculture's and Transportation's kids pages, and Museums of History and Art.

tag(s): branches of government (48), north carolina (4), states (162)

In the Classroom

Share this site on your interactive whiteboard then allow students to explore on their own. Share the site with students as a resource for state research projects. Have students create online posters on paper or do it together as a class using a tool such as Web Poster Wizard (reviewed here or PicLits (reviewed here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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