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Defenders of Wildlife - Defenders of Wildlife

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7 to 12
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Defenders of Wildlife is chalk full of useful, current information about wildlife conservation, threats to the natural environment, and fact sheets about specific species of animals,...more
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Defenders of Wildlife is chalk full of useful, current information about wildlife conservation, threats to the natural environment, and fact sheets about specific species of animals, as well as much more! Explaining concepts such as climate change, off-shore drilling and renewable energy this site is an invaluable environmental resource. Plus, all information comes with interesting photos and an easy to navigate menu of further information.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): animals (285), conservation (128), endangered species (38), environment (320)

In the Classroom

This would be an excellent resource for an environmental science class. Add to online course sites as an alternative to textbooks. Create assignments where students are directed to this site to read for understanding of the topics that are being discussed. For students in more advanced environmental studies, the section on Policy and Legislation is great. It is far more understandable than reading through the actual laws and policies. Have students read the website information on a specific policy or law, and then have the students find the actual law to "check up" on the site. This will encourage students to make comparisons between the reading that they could easily understand and the more complicated language of the actual laws. This simple exercise could be incorporated in an English or reading comprehension classroom or a science classroom (what a great way to do a little cross curricular teaching!). Students will learn to read more analytically in the process!
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Biodiversity Snapshots - Museum Victoria

Grades
7 to 12
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Learn about a variety of natural wildlife on this informative site. Create an account for your class and while taking walks outside, identify and take pictures of species you see ...more
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Learn about a variety of natural wildlife on this informative site. Create an account for your class and while taking walks outside, identify and take pictures of species you see along the way. Participate in the site if possible. Click on "Field Guide" to choose one of the categories such as birds. Learn about the identifying characteristics and habits as well as how it is classified and where it is found. Find a vast array of information on species along with stunning photography. Currently, this is being used by those in Australia.

tag(s): animals (285), australia (35), biodiversity (39), natural resources (60)

In the Classroom

Identify organisms native to Australia. Peruse the various types of animals and create food chains and webs based upon the type of feeder it is as well as location. Learn terminology and the environmental factors in Australia. Create mashups of food chains and webs either in the classroom or online. Have students make a mashup using one of the many TeachersFirst Edge Tools reviewed here. Consider creating your own version of Biodiversity snapshots using flora and fauna in your own area. Use a blog, wiki, or class website to place all the information.
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Regents Exam Prep Center - Oswego City School District Regents Exam Prep Center

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6 to 12
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This resource contains great review information, test questions, and other materials for several content areas. The materials included for review are a great way to identify the basic...more
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This resource contains great review information, test questions, and other materials for several content areas. The materials included for review are a great way to identify the basic material needed for the understanding of Chemistry, Physics, Geometry, Algebra, U.S. and Global History, Earth Science, and the Living Environment.

tag(s): test prep (96)

In the Classroom

Use this site as a great review of information about various topics in the subject. This activity would work well for individual or pairs of students in a lab or on laptops. Make a shortcut to this site on classroom computers and use it as a center. Be sure to include this site on your class web page for students to access both in and outside of class for further practice.

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Carbon Cycle Interactive - The University of Waikato

Grades
6 to 9
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This website provides a great diagram and overview of the carbon cycle. All labels in the diagram are clickable and informational. This is a great science learning object! ...more
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This website provides a great diagram and overview of the carbon cycle. All labels in the diagram are clickable and informational. This is a great science learning object!

tag(s): carbon (21), carbon dioxide (16), fossil fuels (18), matter (61)

In the Classroom

Use this diagram to have students learn about the carbon cycle in units about matter cycles. Share the diagram on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Create an activity where students use the diagram like a web quest, or have the class interact with the diagram on the interactive whiteboard as a large group instruction activity. Ask students to list the processes and briefly describe them using the information provided in the links. Have students then list the carbon sources and describe them. This is an easy activity and a great interactive alternative to taking lecture notes. As a teacher precaution, you may want to have student use headphones when using the activity as some of the link items are videos.
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Museum of Obsolete Objects - MoooJvM

Grades
6 to 12
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View this interactive video timeline to look at obsolete technologies from the past, including rotary hand mixers, cassette tapes, and other technologies. These short videos share "obsolete"...more
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View this interactive video timeline to look at obsolete technologies from the past, including rotary hand mixers, cassette tapes, and other technologies. These short videos share "obsolete" items from the 1860s to 2000s. (Note: if your school blocks YouTube, this site will not be accessible. Ask to have this specific url unblocked).

tag(s): inventors and inventions (96)

In the Classroom

Use as a introductory video into science and technology. Identify the science understanding and concepts needed to change the technologies. Brainstorm other technologies that could be added to this list from the various decades. Brainstorm together using a tool such as Mindmeister (reviewed here). Challenge cooperative learning groups to investigate a specific decade and determine what was a new invention then but is no longer used today. Have students create slideshows using Zoho Show (reviewed here). Display these on a blog or wiki for students to review and comment. Assign students to do a written or recorded interview of those who have used these old technologies to find out how life has changed before and after the technology.
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Study Blue - StudyBlue

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K to 12
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This site lets you keep study notes with you anywhere you go! Create flashcards and study even on your mobile phone. Share notes, flashcards, study guides, and quizzes with others ...more
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This site lets you keep study notes with you anywhere you go! Create flashcards and study even on your mobile phone. Share notes, flashcards, study guides, and quizzes with others for excellent collaboration. Study Blue also provides hints to help students study. Create a folder in "My Backpack." Make flashcards to get started or search flashcards already created by others.

tag(s): flash cards (46)

In the Classroom

Use as a study aid for students. This is a great tool for older students (who own cell phones). Students can study their flashcards on the bus, in the backseat of the family car, or while waiting for their dentist appointment! Have students create individual accounts and collaborate with others or create a class account for all to use. Have groups collaborate on the creation of flashcards for students to use or have groups create flashcards for specific parts of the unit. Learning support students can take their extra help along with them.

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Vodburner - Netralia Pty Ltd

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K to 12
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Use Vodburner to record Skype calls for later viewing and use. Save your high quality video and audio Skype calls easily. Download the Vodburner software...more
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Use Vodburner to record Skype calls for later viewing and use. Save your high quality video and audio Skype calls easily. Download the Vodburner software (an email must be entered to begin the download) and install the plugin on Windows machines only. Whenever you make a Skype call, Vodburner automatically records both sides of the conversation (both users must have Vodburner installed.) Choose recording of either side or both sides of the conversation. Note: It is recommended that you inform the other party that recording will be taking place as notification is not given through Skype. Use this service for free for 30 days. After 30 days it is still free, but a watermark with the Vodburner logo will appear in all recordings. Purchase the paid version to avoid the watermark. Use the built-in editor to edit recorded videos before finalizing. Find a FAQ section as well as great information for "Getting Started." Having troubles with the program? Be sure to check out the "Troubleshooting" section.

tag(s): chat (53), skype (12), video (269)

In the Classroom

Users will need the to download/install Skype (free) and create an account. Follow the simple instructions for using and recording. Be sure to check out all the help tabs found on the Vodburner site.

As noted above, it is a good idea to let those you are Skyping with know that you are recording calls with Vodburner. Be sure to discuss appropriate use of this resource and consequences for inappropriate use before using with students.

Use for any subject matter to record Skype calls with others for later review and discussion. Using Vodburner would be a great addition to Skype calls to professionals, enhancing content in your classroom. For specific ideas on using Skype, check out the Skype In the Classroom section.

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Cell Games - Sheppard Software

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5 to 12
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Use this interactive resource to review the parts of an animal, plant, or bacterial cell. Hover over the areas of the cells to learn the parts and the functions. When ...more
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Use this interactive resource to review the parts of an animal, plant, or bacterial cell. Hover over the areas of the cells to learn the parts and the functions. When finished, follow with an activity to practice what has been learned or take the quiz!
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tag(s): animals (285), bacteria (30), cells (104), plants (153)

In the Classroom

Use this resource to introduce the unit on cells. Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Students can review the cells and create a graphic organizer of information and then discuss the differences between the different types of cells. Use for continuous review until the cell parts are learned and students have mastered the game and the quiz.
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iNaturalist - Nate Agrin, Jessica Kline, and Ken-ichi Ueda

Grades
6 to 12
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Explore your world! Learn about Life! Record observations! This site is based upon the idea that naturalists record observations and that sharing information is a good thing! Click...more
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Explore your world! Learn about Life! Record observations! This site is based upon the idea that naturalists record observations and that sharing information is a good thing! Click on the Observations tab to view by species or by placemarkers in a Google map. Choose to look by Species or search for a specific Project or Place. For "full access" create a log-in. This requires an email address. Read tips for safely managing email registrations here.

tag(s): animals (285), biodiversity (39), plants (153), species (29)

In the Classroom

Find interesting species to research looking through this site. create an outdoor ecosystem that students use to observe. Identify and enter species to this site to become part of the growing number of people recording their findings. Have students create a presentation using a tool such as Woices (reviewed here). This site allows students to create audio recordings AND choose a location (on a map) where the story/research takes place.

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Zooniverse - Zooniverse

Grades
7 to 12
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Zooniverse is one of the largest and most popular citizen science projects. Choose from the many live projects found along the right side including Planet Hunters, Old Weather, and...more
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Zooniverse is one of the largest and most popular citizen science projects. Choose from the many live projects found along the right side including Planet Hunters, Old Weather, and Ancient Lives among others (at the time of this review.) Click on the link of your choice to go to that project page and read more about the purpose. View interesting information and discoveries that occurring when people around the world contribute to a citizen science project. Create a login that can be used for any project shown. Registration requires and email address. Read tips for safely managing email registrations here.
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tag(s): earth (231), moon (75), space (215), sun (73), weather (193)

In the Classroom

Find interesting scientific information and how our understanding increases when data is included from other sources. Find information about our past history, earth and space around us, and information that can affect our future technology and exploration. Have students make a multimedia presentation about one of the "projects" using one of the many TeachersFirst Edge tools reviewed here.

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Mummy - Oriental Institute/University of Chicago

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6 to 12
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Created by the Oriental Institute at the University of Chicago, this site allows you to virtually prepare and embalm a mummy. Begin with instructions for pulling the brain out of ...more
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Created by the Oriental Institute at the University of Chicago, this site allows you to virtually prepare and embalm a mummy. Begin with instructions for pulling the brain out of the nose, then you remove the body's organs, fill the body with salt, wrap it with linens, and prepare it for the afterlife. Potentially unfamiliar words are highlighted, and clicking on them provides an audio dictionary to teach the meaning. While it's not too graphic, it's just "gross" enough that students will love it.

tag(s): egypt (70), halloween (39)

In the Classroom

Use on an interactive whiteboard or projector, or allow students to do their own individual "embalming" on a classroom or home computer. Create a center using your interactive whiteboard and allow small groups to manipulate the whiteboard and the "life size" mummy. You'll need to provide the context for the activity; the site is simply a chance to virtually prepare a mummy. Share t during a unit on Ancient Egypt. This would be intriguing to do around the Halloween holiday.
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Greenlearning.ca - Pembrina Institute

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4 to 12
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Promote environmental citizenship through this site's "green learning" units. The curriculum ranges from examining how electricity works, understanding the balance of ecosystems, to...more
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Promote environmental citizenship through this site's "green learning" units. The curriculum ranges from examining how electricity works, understanding the balance of ecosystems, to a high school unit on sustainable futures. Enjoy the interactive wind turbine and carbon calculator. The animation for grades 4 - 7 is engaging, and the video presentations for high school students on sustainability is powerful. Green Learning provides educators with an array of hands-on activities, online learning opportunities, printable materials, assessment tools, and valuable resources such as environmental experts to contact. Each environmental concept taught provides opportunities for real world learning, encourages social action, and advocacy. Teacher friendly planning tools can help meet instructional time constraints, students learning styles, and promote cross-curricular connections. The site is free but requires registration. Membership provides access to additional educational materials and a monthly newsletter. This program comes to us from Canada.

tag(s): climate (93), climate change (66), conservation (128), ecosystems (89), electricity (90), energy (202), environment (320), natural resources (60), persuasive writing (55), solar energy (40)

In the Classroom

The e-Card project series invites students to research a topic, write a persuasive letter to an individual they believe makes decisions that effect environment, then design and create an e-Card. Have your students share their work on the e-Cards website and view what other students have created.

There is a range of lessons and activities here, some more complex than others. You may want to choose a few that fit your curricular needs and then allow small groups of students to investigate one together. Have student groups make an online Stixy (reviewed here) of things they discover about their topic, and later rearrange the items to "explain" their topic to classmates visually.
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Listen a Minute - Sean Banville

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5 to 12
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Find one minute listening exercises on such common activities as babysitting, chickens, and exercise. The listening selections are alphabetized with several selections for each letter...more
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Find one minute listening exercises on such common activities as babysitting, chickens, and exercise. The listening selections are alphabetized with several selections for each letter of the alphabet. Each listening selection has a multitude of activities you can download (along with the reading text) in Word and pdf formats. Find Cloze paragraphs, fill in the blanks, words to unscramble, and much more. Many activities can also be viewed online. Each selection has two interactive quizzes. Though targeted for the ESL/ELL student, listening is one of the language arts standards, and this is a good way for any classroom teacher to address listening skills.
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tag(s): dance (28), listening (91), reading comprehension (116), vocabulary (325)

In the Classroom

Use the selections and activities with individual students as an assignment or independent practice on your classroom computer. The reading and activities are easy to work on independently because of the listening feature. Don't forget to provide headsets. Small groups of students can listen at one of several literacy stations in your classroom. Provide this link for the families of ESL/ELL students to read (or listen) to the selections together. Learning support teachers will also appreciate the option to provide audio and text together to improve student comprehension.
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Here on Earth - NPR

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5 to 12
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This NPR site offers the weekly schedule and recorded programs in its "Here on Earth" series, offering cultural news from around the world. The programs are often part of a ...more
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This NPR site offers the weekly schedule and recorded programs in its "Here on Earth" series, offering cultural news from around the world. The programs are often part of a larger series, the archives of which are easily accessible as well. Previews for the five weekly programs, Monday through Friday include enticing photographs. Links on the pages of the programs offer opportunities for more information and links to related programs. Students also have the opportunity to see short, related videos and comment on ongoing programs. Programs cover a wide variety of subjects and fields.
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tag(s): comics and cartoons (72), radio (27), religions (66)

In the Classroom

Teachers may want to preview the upcoming programs for each week to connect their ELL/ESL students with the programs that concern their part of the world. Students could do an introduction to their countries before the class listens to an appropriate program. Ask your students to visit the site, listen, research, and create a multimedia presentation using one of the many TeachersFirst Edge tools reviewed here.

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Scale of Universe - Primax Studio

Grades
4 to 12
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Discover better perspective on the size of the universe using this interactive. Use the slider at the bottom to move from the atomic, cellular, and human perspective all the way ...more
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Discover better perspective on the size of the universe using this interactive. Use the slider at the bottom to move from the atomic, cellular, and human perspective all the way to the size of the galaxy. Units are displayed alongside images. Warning: underneath the interactive, there is a public comment area. You may want to preview this area if allowing students to navigate on their own.

tag(s): atoms (57), cells (104), measurement (160), space (215)

In the Classroom

Use as an introductory unit to measurement, or when discussing atoms or cellular parts. Allow students time to roam the site in groups and notice the units given. Ask them to determine the relationships between the units as they move through the slider from the smallest to the largest. Use this to frame the size of microscopic items observed in class. Create a measurement unit scale for display in the room.
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ArtsEdge - Kennedy Center

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K to 12
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This site, created by the Kennedy Center offers a wealth of interactive lesson plans for grades K-12 dealing with a variety of topics, all with an "arts" spin. Search by ...more
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This site, created by the Kennedy Center offers a wealth of interactive lesson plans for grades K-12 dealing with a variety of topics, all with an "arts" spin. Search by subject, keyword, or grade level (K-4, 5-8, or 9-12). Some examples of topics include Native Americans, Civil War, Shakespeare, myths, melodrama, adjectives, baseball, and countless others! There are many interactive lessons: some with video, audio, or slideshows. The lessons provide an estimate of time required and complete, step-by-step instructions. There are printables included with some of the lessons.
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tag(s): african american (113), baseball (36), civil war (145), comics and cartoons (72), dance (28), folktales (65), greece (26), habitats (85), immigration (57), literature (275), mexico (34), musical instruments (47), myths and legends (25), native americans (78), painting (66), surrealism (4)

In the Classroom

Search this site for a topic that you are teaching in your class. Share the lesson on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Better yet, make the video or slideshow a learning station for students to do themselves in small groups.
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Science of Everyday Life - Discovery Education

Grades
K to 12
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Explore science in everyday life to understand the impact of science and technology. Find information for students, educators, and families as well as lesson plans and activities. Lesson...more
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Explore science in everyday life to understand the impact of science and technology. Find information for students, educators, and families as well as lesson plans and activities. Lesson plans are standards based and divided into age groupings. (Note: at the time of this review, the lesson plans for grades 9-12 were still unavailable). View lessons and interactives to make science come alive. The videos even include the grade range! View the family section for great online labs and family activities. This site can make science accessible and interesting even to middle school girls who may begin to shy away from anything scientific.

tag(s): inventors and inventions (96)

In the Classroom

Use the many great activities to bring home basic science concepts such as collisions and motion in the activity "Cushion It!" Help students make real world connections that may interest them in a science career. Use the innovation activities as part of a unit in inventors and inventions. This site has something for every age level. This is a fabulous site to save in your class favorites for students to explore on their own. Challenge cooperative learning groups to research a specific science topic and create a multimedia presentation to share with the class about their topic. Have students create a simple online posters using PicLits (reviewed here). This is also a fabulous link to share on your class website for students to access both in and out of the classroom.
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Scientific American: Slide Shows - Scientific American, A division of Nature America, Inc.

Grades
6 to 12
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The slide show portion of the Scientific American website is a great visual resource for science teachers. The shows are organized in reverse chronological order from most recent to...more
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The slide show portion of the Scientific American website is a great visual resource for science teachers. The shows are organized in reverse chronological order from most recent to the oldest. The page is not searchable, but the site is. This would be great for science current events to tie into class. Some slide shows are graphic (a removed human brain!) and may need disclaimers when being shared with students.

tag(s): human body (125), microorganisms (15), oil (45), oil spill (21), organisms (21), slides (65), space (215)

In the Classroom

Try using this site when discussing how science relates to our current world. For instance, show the ten most dangerous moments for the space shuttle and the station history when studying astronomy. Incorporate the slide show about the Gulf oil spill and reading into a class blog for a biology unit on bacteria. This slide show demonstrates how microbes are used to clean up the oil. The pictures of the organisms are wonderful! Or, incorporate it into an environmental science class dealing with the impact of human behavior on the environment. Have students read and view the slide show as homework, and then discuss what they have learned via your class wiki or in class. Challenge students to 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). Have students further discuss the potential problems with associated new microbes into the oil spill area.
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Temperate Deciduous Forest - MBGNet

Grades
4 to 8
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This site highlights a simple look at the temperate deciduous forests of the world. This biome experiences summer, winter, fall, and spring. Check out this site to learn more about...more
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This site highlights a simple look at the temperate deciduous forests of the world. This biome experiences summer, winter, fall, and spring. Check out this site to learn more about the animals and plants that live in the biome, where the biome is located, what causes the seasons to change, leaf identification information, and much more about this biome.

This site is also used as a web resource for the TeachersFirst interactive Biomes of the World Unit.

tag(s): biomes (115), climate (93), seasons (38)

In the Classroom

If you are teaching about biomes, climates, leaf identification, or seasons, this is the perfect site to include! Introduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students explore this site independently or in small groups. Have cooperative learning groups create multimedia projects such as 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).

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Fascinating Fish - Florida Museum of Natural History

Grades
6 to 12
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This site from the department of ichthyology at the Florida Museum of Natural History offers a wealth of information on all manner of fishes, sharks, and other sea life. ...more
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This site from the department of ichthyology at the Florida Museum of Natural History offers a wealth of information on all manner of fishes, sharks, and other sea life. In addition to the site's text, there is a large, searchable photo database that will return images of many species. The education section includes information on how fish live and swim, identification keys, and commonly asked "fishy questions." Earth science teachers will definitely want to bookmark this one.

tag(s): fish (26), marine biology (33), oceans (152)

In the Classroom

Within the education section of this site is a host of lesson plans and classroom activities that are offered for free! In addition to those, there are also small we explorations about classifying fish, fish families, and anatomy to name a few. Select the appropriate exploration for a particular unit and use that portion of the site as a learning center or station. Have students explore the desired section in cooperative learning groups or pairs. To assess what they have learned, 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).

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