GradesK to 7
In the ClassroomThis is a great visual tool to use. Take a poll and have your students type their answers into the word cloud builder. Then display on an interactive whiteboard or projector and see which answer was the most popular. Use this site as a way to help students see and memorize text, especially visual learners. Use it also when writing poetry or to "see" themes of repeated words and images. Have students paste in their own writing to spot repeated (and monotonous) language when teaching lessons on word choice. Students will be surprised to see what words appear to be dominant. Have students work in groups to create word posters of vocabulary words with related meanings, such as different ways to say "walk" or "said" and decorate your classroom with these visual reminders of the richness of language.
Grades4 to 12
In the ClassroomBring galleries from all around the globe right into your classroom and project them in full view on your whiteboard or screen. Whether your objective is to explore curriculum connections to topics you are studying, introduce and examine concepts such as a particular theme or time period, practice descriptive writing, pair works of art with literary selections and historical documents, or develop art appreciation, start by selecting a museum, and then either chose to explore the museum or view the artwork. The drop-down menus and information bars let you navigate easily between the museum and artworks. Choose the "Create an Artwork Collection" feature to build a class collection of specific views of the artworks and add comments; then share online. Create and annotate a class collection to pair with a literary work or invite each student to select a work for a Favorites Museum, explaining his/her choice in written comments. Then share the link for parents to tour the "museum" and comment back. For more ideas, lesson plans, and projects, check out the National Gallery of Art reviewed here and browse the online resources for teachers and students. Try inviting the art teacher to collaborate on a joint venture with you.
Grades3 to 12
In the ClassroomCheck out this educational page for many ideas, links, and ready to do projects. This all-encompassing lesson plan challenges students to participate in enthusiastic learning activities about why kites have often appeared in poetry, legends, and folk tales, and have led to important scientific discoveries. Invite students to try one of the many ideas to create and decorate a kite that represents flags from various countries. Ask them to label the kite with that country's word for kite, using the link provided for the Kite Translation Table. Allow your students to be adventurous with technology by providing them with the opportunity to create online posters using Animoto for Education reviewed here.
GradesK to 12
*Note from the creators of the site, "Firefox 4 compatibility - Add-Art does not work w/ Firefox 4, yet. But it is an open-source, volunteer project and has always been improved by people like you. The code is free for you to modify so you don't have to start from scratch."
tag(s): safety (89)
In the ClassroomBlocking ads on school computers is a great way to avoid inappropriate content and will reduce the confusion that visual inference can cause. Be sure to get permission from your IT department before installing this ad-on to school computers. Maybe you can even convince them to install it schoolwide! Preview the artwork that Add-art uses by clicking on "Shows" before installing this ad on. Plug-ins such as Add-Art are not permanent and are easy to disable.
GradesK to 8
tag(s): classroom management (136)
In the ClassroomAdd Post-it notes to your back-to-school supply list and "stick" to this website for ideas that will make teaching and learning fun, motivating, and practical. Maybe even ask for Post-it contributions from home. Find unique ideas for using the repositionable sticky notes for Venn Diagrams and more comparing and contrasting techniques, timelines, story maps, bulletin boards, classroom management, and other sticky ideas.
GradesK to 12
There is an excellent tutorial for creating your own GoogleTrek that includes step-by-step directions with pictures. After creating a GoogleTrek, it can be posted to the site for others to use. Also included is a rubric that can be downloaded in pdf form. More information on Google Maps can be found at the TeachersFirst review. You can also view the maps in Google Earth. To learn more about Google Earth, see the TeachersFirst review (here).
tag(s): maps (289)
In the ClassroomIntroduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students explore independently or in small groups. Older students can create their own GoogleTrek after viewing examples for any subject. To post the GoogleTrek, you must email the creator (directions are explicitly explained on the "Posting Your Own GoogleTrek" link. Have students create GoogleTrek's about Christmas Around the World, routes of explorers, famous landmarks, and important inventions. While presenting a GoogleTrek, have students identify points displayed on paper maps located at their seats.
Grades3 to 12
In the ClassroomUsers need to know how to select and upload a photograph from a computer. Be sure to take advantage of the helpful on-line tutorials. Enjoy spending some time experimenting with the site before introducing it to your class. The on-line gallery takes submissions and lets users view artwork. This is only accessible with a Facebook account. Many schools block Facebook entirely, so check first. Facebook accounts DO require a valid email address. One option is to register for a class Facebook account using a free class gmail account. It is essential that permissible use and consequences are set before introducing the site. Get parent permission before posting any student work on the sharing site. Downloading drawings allows "local control." Without a Facebook account it is possible to view the work of others but not, comment, rate and submit artwork. Preview artwork in the user's gallery before having your class accesses it. Students will also need to know how to cite the original source of a photograph. Psykopaint is a wonderful alternative to hand drawn pictures. Students can liven up reports, stories, websites, and podcasts with manipulated photographs. Model how to use this site on your projector or interactive whiteboard and then give students at least one full class session to experiment. Create your own set of pictures in advance and limit students to the class set so they do not search and find pictures inappropriate for the classroom. Have students take photographs of historic landmarks or important buildings in their town and then use Psykopaint to transform them into illustrations. Help students use these images to create an online, multimedia, town history poster using a "glog," using GlogsterEDU, reviewed here. Consider scanning or photographing student artwork and then use this site to edit their creation. Let students photograph themselves acting out scenes for a story they wrote then transform them into painterly illustrations. Have students create a multimedia presentation using Thinglink, reviewed here. This site allows users to narrate a picture. The artwork students can create on this site will spice up any published projects.
Parent permission advised before posting student work created using this tool
Includes Interaction w general public/ public galleries with unmoderated content
Includes social features, such as "friends," comments, ratings by others
Requires registration/log-in (WITH email)
Products can be embedded
Products can be shared by URL
GradesK to 12
In the ClassroomImageBase provides a great place for students to find pictures that can be used to communicate information. Find pictures about a particular topic. Keep this site as a reference on your class web page for any time students are creating wikis, blogs, or electronic projects where they need images. Create collages, projects, and more with these high quality pictures. Use images as blog prompts or illustrations in student projects. Have your students create an online "scrapbook" using Smilebox, reviewed here. Find images of locations you are studying in world cultures or geography class. Find images to use in student online projects using Bookemon, reviewed here, or UtellStory, reviewed here.
GradesK to 12
In the ClassroomThe resources on this site are useful for ANY grade level. Each lesson lists how it connects to UK learning standards, which are not unlike those in the U.S. The workshops and videos integrate beautifully with a diverse range of curriculum topics such as: science, poetry, math, history, and much more. Connect a unit about plants and photosynthesis to the collaborative work by Loop.PH. Liven up the process of publishing a writer's workshop book with workshops modeled after bookmaker and illustrator Sarah Dyer or Jane Ray. Take a unit about birds of prey and examine how Sulky Best creates animations of their flight. View the workshop videos on laptops, interactive whiteboard, or a projector before beginning one of ArtisanCam's suggested lessons. These videos are an engaging way to give directions and provide wonderful overview of the activity. Each lesson includes clear systematic directions and suggests practical guidelines for teachers to follow. Share this link on the class website for enrichment or even a fun homework assignment. Teachers of gifted can find inspiration for many extension activities from this site.
Some of the activities ask the students to enter their name, age, and town before submitting them to their online gallery. Be sure not to include any identifiable information that outsiders could trace to an individual students. Consider asking students to leave these fields blank or assign initials and logical pseudonyms (Ex. MsGper2-12, MsGper2-13, etc.) for their user names. Of course, you will want check school policies and get written parent permission before submitting student work. Spell out both permissible use and consequences before you send students to this site.
GradesK to 5
In the ClassroomIntroduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector and then ask students explore it independently or in small groups. Connect this activity to literature study books such as Lois Elherts "Snowballs," and ask students to label or write about their online creation. It is possible to print directly from the site. To save on paper and ink, simply take a screen shot and save it to the desktop ("Prnt Scrn" key on Windows, Command+shuft+4 on Mac --- then paste into a document or slide). These images could be incorporated into a class book in programs such as Mixbook reviewed here or using PowerPoint. Exercise your students "fluent" creative thinking skills by asking them to brainstorm items that developers could add to the snowman options. Soon students will be generating their own ideas for unusual snow characters.
GradesK to 12
tag(s): design (83)
In the ClassroomDemonstrate how to use thisisand on an interactive whiteboard or projector and then let students explore the site independently or collaboratively. There is an amazing gallery of previously submitted images to explore but be sure to 'sift' through them for inappropriate content before allowing students free access. Although creating precise shapes can be difficult, the application is wonderful for experimenting with color. Have students create a landscape by varying the value of only one color or by playing with the chromatic interactions between colors. This is a wonderful site to support any course in color theory. Art history or studio classes studying "Geometric Abstraction" will enjoy trying to recreate paintings by Josef Albers, Mark Rothko, Sean Scully, or Frank Stella.
Grades2 to 12
tag(s): flickr (7)
In the ClassroomTag Galaxy offers an engaging way to introduce new concepts or informally assess prior knowledge in science or social studies on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Search key terms such as "leaf" or "kids" and then narrow that search using additional tags. Introduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students explore this site independently or in small groups. Ask students to annotate an image using a tool such as Fine Tuna, (reviewed here). Compare and contrast the tags for two photographs. What traits do they share and determine what tags differentiate them from one another. Compare the traits using a site such as the Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here). Once they understand how tags work, challenge students to generate a list of tags for a species image or location image (a digital picture they have taken or found online), using concepts and terms they have studied.
GradesK to 12
In the ClassroomUse this tool easily in your Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) classroom since all students will be able to access it for free, no matter what device they have. Students can use this when researching alone or in groups, sharing files, videos, and pictures quickly from one computer to another. Have students write tasks for each member of the group on a sticky so that everyone has a responsibility. Show them how to copy/paste URLs for sources onto notes, too. Use Lino as your virtual word wall for vocabulary development. Use a Lino for students to submit and share questions or comments about assignments and tasks they are working on. Use it as a virtual graffiti wall for students to make connections between their world and curriculum content, such as "I wonder what the hall monitor would say finding Lady Macbeth washing her hands in the school restroom... and what Lady M would say back." (Of course, you will want to have a PG-13 policy for student comments!) Encourage students to maintain an idea collection lino for ideas and creative inspirations they may not have used yet but do not want to "lose." They can color code and organize ideas later or send the stickies to a new project board later. In writing or art classes, use lino as a virtual writer's journal or design a notebook to collect ideas, images, and even video clips. In science classes, encourage students to keep a lino board with (classroom appropriate) questions and "aside" thoughts about science concepts being studied and to use these ideas in later projects so their creative ideas are not 'lost" before project time. A lino board can also serve as a final online "display" for students to "show what they know" as the culmination of a research project. Add videos, images, and notes in a carefully arranged display not unlike an electronic bulletin board. This is also a great tool to help you stay "personally" organized. Use this site as a resource to share information with other teachers, parents, or students.
Grades1 to 8
In the ClassroomUse these logic puzzles to differentiate for your gifted learners. Project the activities on an interactive whiteboard or projector and use with the whole class as a brain break. Put the website on your class webpage for students to access from home. In addition use the site on your classroom computers and create a learning center during math time. When students finish a puzzle, have them print it and turn it in for a grade.
Grades4 to 8
In the ClassroomUse this site to show kids who are going on a field trip to a cave a little of what to expect. Or have students use this website as a virtual cave field trip. Assign student groups topics to pay special attention to during their exploration of the website. Have groups share with the class on their new found area of expertise. Have your students create an interactive online cave poster ("glog") using Glogster EDU, reviewed here.
GradesK to 12
In the ClassroomUse the resources from this web site to plan and implement lessons that students will relate to, and help to bring an end to harmful name-calling and "dissing." Select some of the many safe Web 2.0 tools reviewed by TeachersFirst Edge, such as Automotivator, reviewed here for designing digital posters that can be printed, or PhotoPeach, reviewed here for creating a digital slideshow that includes music, captions, and more. TeachersFirst also has an entire collection of on line resources to create comic strips, available here to drive home the message that bullying is never a laughing matter.
GradesK to 12
In the ClassroomMark this in your professional favorites for planning and finding webquests. The webquest format has been around for years and can be adapted many ways. Start from this collection and consider designing a webquest "Task" that uses a collaborative, web 2.0 tool such as those reviewed in the TeachersFirst Edge listings. Today's students will love the authentic, creative tasks and collaboration made possible by today's tools. TeachersFirst Edge reviews include ways to use the tools safely and within school policies, for a learning "win-win." You might even want to have student groups design their own webquests for classmates to try as a new twist on "jigsaw" learning.
GradesK to 12
tag(s): digital storytelling (147)
In the ClassroomFind great project ideas from educators who have used Voicethread in the classroom. For example, in Math find great projects about measurement, probability, and problem solving. In Science, view stories about Astronomy. View projects about Ellis Island and the Reconstruction along with other Social Studies examples. Find great projects on these subjects as well as Language Arts, Foreign Language, Information Technology, Professional Development, and Performing Arts. Have a great project using Voicethread? Join the community and submit your as well.
Grades3 to 12
tag(s): printables (37)