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Story Jumper - storyjumper.com

Grades
2 to 8
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Story Jumper helps you write and illustrate stories in just seven steps-- then share them online. Begin by selecting a story format and accompanying graphic. Manipulate the text and...more
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Story Jumper helps you write and illustrate stories in just seven steps-- then share them online. Begin by selecting a story format and accompanying graphic. Manipulate the text and add other items to the picture that forms with each addition to the story. You also change the background and upload photos. Add original drawings, as well. When finished with a particular scene, go on to the next page by clicking the arrow. In order to save and share stories online, writers must complete a free registration. Although there is an option to buy the finished story in print format, this is not necessary to use the site. There is a complete guide for the teacher-friendly Classroom Edition offering detailed directions for setting up class accounts, etc.

tag(s): writing (359)

In the Classroom

Although the sentences and graphics available appear juvenile, the fact that writers can delete the text and add their own original text, photos, and drawings makes this site flexible enough to use with older students, as well. This activity would work well for individual or pairs of students in a lab or on laptops. Ask your students to visit the site and create an online book with their original writings, drawings, and photos. ESL and ELL students will be able to use the site easily, and will learn appropriate sentence structure and add to their vocabulary by selecting new items to put into the graphic. Older students can also create "little buddy" books for younger students to read and share.
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iWrite - Great Source

Grades
5 to 12
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Everything a student needs to know about writing is on this iWrite source online from Great Source! There are categories for students, parents, and teachers. Not only are there PowerPoints...more
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Everything a student needs to know about writing is on this iWrite source online from Great Source! There are categories for students, parents, and teachers. Not only are there PowerPoints with instructions for all types of writing, there is a Six Traits section, a grammar section, mini-lessons, templates, tutorials and graphic organizers for you to use with your students. Educators can choose between elementary and secondary for instructions for different types of writing. The grammar section would best be aimed towards upper elementary, middle, and high school students and includes videos for the students to watch about mechanics, spelling, commonly confused words, sentence structure, and anything else you can think of that involves writing. Finally! A great, free online text for all to use!

tag(s): descriptive writing (41), expository writing (44), grammar (216), narrative (24), persuasive writing (55), writing (359)

In the Classroom

This is your basic text book online, but how wonderful to be able to project your text book for all to see. With your interactive whiteboard, you can annotate specifics or additions you would like to emphasize. For sharing on a projector or as a tutorial, copy the online screen onto your computer's clipboard, then create a PowerPoint with that screen, annotating the parts you want to emphasize to the students. After reading the directions from the online textbook, students can then complete a worksheet or task you provide, or work online at this interactive grammar site: Basic Elements of English (reviewed here).
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Bombay TV - grapheine.com

Grades
7 to 12
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Grab your student's attention by creating subtitles over old video clips from Bombay. Using humor, teachers can demonstrate how to punctuate dialog and how body language and intonation...more
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Grab your student's attention by creating subtitles over old video clips from Bombay. Using humor, teachers can demonstrate how to punctuate dialog and how body language and intonation enhance communication. There are several movie clips from which to choose. The subtitles can appear as text, or be turned into speech. It is also possible to record your own voiceover. Their second site, Bombay TV 2, lets the viewer drag and drop scenes to create their own unique video sequence. All videos are published on-line and come with an embed code and web address. Teachers and students can share videos by embedding them on websites, by email, or social bookmarks.

tag(s): creative writing (166), india (36), writing (359)

In the Classroom

This site is useful for drama, creative writing, psychology, or even character education and school counseling. Behavior support teachers may also want to use it to help students "read" body language. Introduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Explore how people communicate emotion in verbal and non-verbal ways. It is also possible to write subtitles in different languages. Foreign language instructors may want to ask students to write subtitles in the language students are studying. Teachers may find this a humorous way to make class announcements, explain concepts, or even announce homework assignments. Have students work collaboratively to create commercials and share them using a tool such as SchoolTube reviewed here. Preview the site before hand and be sure to get permission from your school administrator to share commercials online. When presenting the site do so with cultural sensitivity. Take into consideration that the language used in the movie clips may be the first language of some students or their families.
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Repper - studio:ludens

Grades
2 to 12
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Is Open House or Back to School Night looming around the corner? This site is a pattern creator that "turns your images into eye-catching designs." Repper will help your students ...more
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Is Open House or Back to School Night looming around the corner? This site is a pattern creator that "turns your images into eye-catching designs." Repper will help your students create stunning covers for reports, student writing, or portfolios. Simply create patterns from your own digital photographs by downloading your image into Repper and then pick a section of the photo to duplicate. Students can re-size and drag the viewfinder to pick the most interesting section of your photo. There are endless possibilities for pattern designs from just one photo. Your creation can be downloaded to your computer or shared as a background on your favorite social networking site or class website. Students will love this tool and will most likely find a use for it after school as well.

tag(s): design (83), graphic design (35), patterns (85)

In the Classroom

This pattern-making tool is useful if teaching digital design or looking for a way to spruce up student presentations. All patterns can be downloaded as a JPG and therefore can be used, manipulated or incorporated with other image making media such as Animoto, iPhoto, iMovie, ThingLink, Photoshop, Flip movies and many more applications. It may also be useful for teaching geometry and making patterns in math class. To find Creative Commons images for student projects (with credit, of course), try Compfight, reviewed here. All imagery created on Repper is available for public access through their website's online gallery. Viewers can also search for patterns in their database by any combination of tags, color, and size.

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Nutrition - Myvocabulary.com

Grades
4 to 12
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As part of their extensive site for vocabulary, roots, and more, Vocabulary.com has added a themed area for health and nutrition. Find interactive vocabulary activities using nutrition-related...more
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As part of their extensive site for vocabulary, roots, and more, Vocabulary.com has added a themed area for health and nutrition. Find interactive vocabulary activities using nutrition-related (not limited to nutrition) vocabulary words. You will also find printable crosswords, fill in the blanks and more, all using the same 18 theme words. This and other "themes" available on the site will make vocabulary development fun.

tag(s): nutrition (154), vocabulary (323)

In the Classroom

Have students work in cooperative learning groups, divide up the vocabulary words, and have each group find the definitions for their assigned vocabulary words. Have the groups share their words and definitions in an online book, using a tool such as Bookemon (reviewed here). Have the groups share the online books on your interactive whiteboard or projector. If you don't have the time to complete online books, have students share the definitions using a class wiki. Be sure to also check out the interactive word puzzles!

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Music/Fine Arts Vocab - Myvocabulary.com

Grades
4 to 12
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As part of their extensive site for vocabulary, roots, and more, MyVocabulary.com has added a themed area about music and the fine arts. Find interactive vocabulary activities using...more
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As part of their extensive site for vocabulary, roots, and more, MyVocabulary.com has added a themed area about music and the fine arts. Find interactive vocabulary activities using music-related (not limited to music) vocabulary words. You will also find printable crosswords, fill in the blanks and more, all using the same 18 theme words. This and other "themes" available on the site will make vocabulary development fun.

tag(s): vocabulary (323)

In the Classroom

What a perfect addition to music or art class! Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students work in cooperative learning groups, divide up the vocabulary words, and have each group find the definitions for their assigned vocabulary words. Have the groups share their words and definitions in an online book, using a tool such as Bookemon (reviewed here). Encourage them to add terms of their own, as well. Have the groups share the online books on your interactive whiteboard or projector. If you don't have the time to complete online books, have students share the definitions using a class wiki. Be sure to also check out the interactive word puzzles!

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Oceans/Maritime Vocabulary - Myvocabulary.com

Grades
4 to 12
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As part of their extensive site for vocabulary, roots, and more, Vocabulary.com has added a themed area about the oceans/maritime studies. Find interactive vocabulary activities using...more
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As part of their extensive site for vocabulary, roots, and more, Vocabulary.com has added a themed area about the oceans/maritime studies. Find interactive vocabulary activities using ocean-related (not limited to ocean) vocabulary words. You will also find printable crosswords, fill in the blanks and more, all using the same 18 theme words. This and other "themes" available on the site will make vocabulary development fun.

tag(s): biomes (116), oceans (148)

In the Classroom

Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Use this site during a unit on oceans or biomes. Have students create their own word activities from the same vocabulary list, such as matching or ranking challenges for their peers to try on the interactive whiteboard.

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Ancient Egypt - Myvocabulary.com

Grades
4 to 12
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As part of their extensive site for vocabulary, roots, and more, Vocabulary.com has added a themed area for Ancient Egypt. Find interactive vocabulary activities using Ancient Egypt...more
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As part of their extensive site for vocabulary, roots, and more, Vocabulary.com has added a themed area for Ancient Egypt. Find interactive vocabulary activities using Ancient Egypt vocabulary words. You will also find printable crosswords, fill in the blanks and more, all using the same 18 theme words. This and other "themes" available on the site will make vocabulary development fun.

tag(s): egypt (67), vocabulary (323)

In the Classroom

Share the puzzles on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students work with a partner to try out the puzzles on their own. Have students try to create their own word puzzles and share them on a class wiki.

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The Story of Anne Frank - The Anne Frank Stichting

Grades
5 to 12
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The Story of Anne Frank is an online opportunity for students to envision what actually happened during Anne Frank's childhood, particularly while she was in hiding in the Secret ...more
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The Story of Anne Frank is an online opportunity for students to envision what actually happened during Anne Frank's childhood, particularly while she was in hiding in the Secret Annex at 265 Prinsengracht, Amsterdam. Thanks to this site, students are able to feel personally involved in what occurred at this location to a thirteen year old girl during the Holocaust. Her story is conveyed through authentic photographs and documents from the Anne Frank House, the former hiding place where Anne Frank's original first diary is on display.

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

In the Classroom

This is a great site to add to your class web page during your study of Anne Frank and the Holocaust, or as part of the themes of discrimination and resiliency. Use it as an introduction before reading The Diary of Anne Frank by displaying the website on your interactive whiteboard or projector to spark a whole class investigation of Anne Frank's childhood and family, her teenage years in hiding and the people who helped, the betrayal, the captivity and suffering in the concentration camps, and her diary. Students may continue exploring and learning on their own in the computer lab or with a class set of laptops. You can easily develop a checklist to direct students to the links that you want to emphasize and to keep them on task while navigating the site. There are even online multiple-choice quizzes about Anne Frank and her diary. Consider having cooperative learning groups create multimedia presentations about Anne Frank. How about online books using a site such as Bookemon, reviewed here.
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Kwout - kwout

Grades
1 to 12
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Use kwout to grab a screenshot or quote of any web site to post anywhere else you need. Show snippets of information from anywhere on the web and insert on ...more
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Use kwout to grab a screenshot or quote of any web site to post anywhere else you need. Show snippets of information from anywhere on the web and insert on any site, blog, or wiki where items can be embedded. Add a "my kwout" badge to your blog or website that will display your quoted items in one place. Here is a sample "kwout" of the Kwout site:

kwout | A brilliant way to quote via kwout

tag(s): bookmarks (60), quotations (23)

In the Classroom

Use kwout by adding a bookmarklet to your browser. Users will need to know how to add bookmarklets in the specific browser being used. You can test out kwout by using the demo on their home page, but this will slow down your ability to kwout pages as you browse the web. Network administrators may block download and installation of bookmarklets on district machines. Be sure to check with your IT department on the possibility of adding bookmarklets. Users of kwout need knowledge of using embed codes to display quoted image maps in the site of their choice.

After adding the bookmarklet to your toolbar, find a website you wish to quote. Click the kwout bookmarklet and view the popup screenshot of the webpage being viewed. Drag your mouse to choose the portion of the screenshot wishing to be quoted. Click "Cut out" to cut that portion of the screenshot that will now become an image map and hyperlink. Copy the embed code that is displayed to paste into the site being used to show the image map.

Add the bookmarklet to your browser window of computers authorized to do so. Be certain to only quote items that are appropriate for viewing and use in the classroom. Require students to show work prior to embedding in a blog, wiki, or other site to be certain of appropriateness.

Use as a way to aggregate content in one place. This tool is best suited for teacher use below grade 6 because unless your students are familiar with embed codes! As students find quoted material, use for discussions of different viewpoints or content needed to understand a specific subject area or topic. For example, have students create a wiki collection of kwouts to show different perspectives on an environmental issue such as global warming. Use teacher-made kwouts as prompts for blog posts or free writing activities in the classroom. Find a specific kwout (quote) that students must respond to and embed in a blog, wiki, or site of your choice. After students read the quote, provide time to respond to the quote and post their thoughts in a blog post or other type of writing. If students require more information or wish to read more, advise them to click on the quote to view the entire resource. View snippets or quotes from a variety of sites for students to analyze. Use this idea for many subject areas including history (multiple viewpoints of conflicts), environmental or economic problems, or other issues. You can also use kwouts to provide a collection of links to review and enrichment sites on your class web page. Non-readers will be able to "see" the sites and now where to click.
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Livebinders - Livebinders, Inc.

Grades
2 to 12
5 Favorites 2  Comments
 
Compile and share information from all over the web -- and text and images you add -- with others by creating a Livebinder on a topic or theme. Add tabs ...more
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Compile and share information from all over the web -- and text and images you add -- with others by creating a Livebinder on a topic or theme. Add tabs with specific information, easily accessed across the top of the binder. Interested in sharing information in a new way? Check out this extremely easy and exceptional site that can easily manage digital clutter. Gather and organize links, videos, information, charts, news, etc. in one neat and organized binder. As you update your binder in the future, all your changes automatically show to everyone who accesses the binder by URL or embedded version. Binders can be public or password-protected ("private"), so use of copyrighted images is possible under Fair Use, as long as you limit access to your own students via password (they call it a "key").
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): organizational skills (122)

In the Classroom

Once an account is created, add the bookmarklet to your browser bar for quick access. Check with your IT department to have the ability to download bookmarklets on your computer. Knowledge of embed codes are required to manage Livebinders in other sites. To get a better idea of Livebinder basics, watch the 90 second video tour before you "play."

Click on "start a blank binder," enter a description, tags, category, and mark it private or public. Click yes to "use Google search to fill a binder" to find plenty of information fast. Your new binder will instantly be filled with a new tab for each site matching your search term. After entering "climate change," a new Livebinder was created with tabs that matched research I had previously spent a lot of time to find. Now it can be instantly shared. Click on "edit menu" in the upper right of your binder to change description, title, etc. as well as fonts, tabs, and other details. To share, click on share this binder along the bottom right to share by email, Facebook, Twitter, or embedding via link or embed code. Embed your Livebinder in a blog, wiki, or other site or provide the link for access by others.

Safety/Security: Users must be 13 years of age to create an account. Teachers can create an account and share Livebinders for student use at any age. Create a class account with a global login and password. Students use the same login to access the Livebinder and create tabs on various topics. As each collaborator would not be known, ask students to add initials to tabs they create so you know the source. Check your school policies on whether student work may be displayed online and what information is permitted, then enforce that policy with your students.

Create a Livebinder to assemble information and requirements for a student project. Make the Livebinder the actual ASSIGNMENT sheet. Use a new tab in the binder for each type of resource or topic of information. In English classes, use to offer spelling, writing, or grammar hints for students. Create a binder for specific sports teams that showcase team accolades, resources for increasing skills, or to create snack lists and travel information. Create a Livebinder for groups of students to plan or report on vacation plans, learn about cultures or countries, or maintain information for student projects. Students can use Livebinders to assemble information for group projects that can be discussed with the teacher to track progress. Consider creating a binder for assignments for students that focus on the use of information versus just the searching for the information. Any content or subject area can be easily managed by creating a Livebinder for student learning. Create an art or music gallery easily with a Livebinder. Use each tab of a Livebinder for each cell part necessary for the functioning of a cell. Create tabs in a binder for each battle or campaign in a specific war. Create a tab for each candidate in a specific election. Have students or student groups (13 and over) create Livebinder "tours" or annotated collections on a topic such as the pros and cons of organic foods, a cultural tour of a country, or applications of geometry in architecture. Of course their student-written annotations and commentary will be key to make these collections into meaningful products. They might even create tasks and questions for other students to try to learn about the topic.

If you are simply looking for a way to share technology-infused project assignments with students from grade 2 and up, a teacher-made Livebinder is an easy way to do it, and you can share the assignment with parents and learning support teachers by simply providing the URL.

Comments

I've used LIveBinder successfully at the 3rd/4th grade level to share web pages with students on specific subjects and topics. My students went back to the binders to read more, even when that unit was finished. I also create and fill binders as I am planning and gathering webpages as I plan my units. Linda, IL, Grades: 3 - 4
Takes some getting used to, instructions not as clear as they could be, but very helpful for sharing lots of resources that share a common theme. Frances, CT, Grades: 6 - 8

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Christmas/Holiday Traditions - myvocabulary.com

Grades
4 to 12
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As part of their extensive site for vocabulary, roots, and more, MyVocabulary.com has added a themed area for Christmas traditions. Find interactive vocabulary activities using Christmas...more
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As part of their extensive site for vocabulary, roots, and more, MyVocabulary.com has added a themed area for Christmas traditions. Find interactive vocabulary activities using Christmas vocabulary words. You will also find printable crosswords, fill in the blanks and more, all using the same theme words. This and other "themes" available on the site will make vocabulary development fun.

tag(s): christmas (64), holidays (147)

In the Classroom

Share the puzzles on your interactive whiteboard or projector or make them available as links on your teacher public page. Have students (or groups) create their own illustrated dictionaries of terms using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here. As you add more vocabulary lists during the year, have them select their favorite 6-10 terms from each list to add to their "book."

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Prezi - Prezi

Grades
3 to 12
3 Favorites 0  Comments
   
Prezi is a visual, "zoomable" presentation tool. It is similar to PowerPoint and Keynote, but there is so much more to Prezi! You can graphically arrange a large amount of ...more
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Prezi is a visual, "zoomable" presentation tool. It is similar to PowerPoint and Keynote, but there is so much more to Prezi! You can graphically arrange a large amount of content, such as a big idea with its supporting information. It creates very dynamic presentations. See samples by clicking "log in" then "Explore" (instead of logging in). Choose a background, follow the instructions and prompts of the program, and before you know it, you will have your very own Prezi to share. If you like to see directions, watch the quick intro video. You can also view Prezis created by others and use them as templates for your own work. Check out the sample created by the TF Edge team here. This tool works in ANY device's web browser, from iPod to Android to laptop. Collaborate on a Prezi with other Prezi members in real time using the Share function. Have a "meeting" to work on the same Prezi in real time. There is a free "edu enjoy" level of membership (requires a school issued email and verification) that allows you to keep your Prezis private, out of public sharing. The regular "enjoy" membership is free for only one month, and its Prezis are public. File storage limits apply to free accounts. It is worth noting that some people find Prezi causes motion-sickness if it zooms too much!

tag(s): graphic organizers (43), visualizations (14)

In the Classroom

You could map your entire lesson, chapter or unit in one Prezi. Once you introduce the concept with this tool, you can go back to it often with your students as you move to different parts of the unit. It would provide a great way to connect prior knowledge with the next step if you share this on your interactive whiteboard or projector throughout the unit. Or you could post it to your web page or give kids the URL so they can review as often as they need it. Try having the students map a concept or chapter with this tool. In history class, create timelines of relevant events, or in science or math class have them map steps in a process. Have students create Prezis for different events, and then have them post the link to their product on a class blog or wiki. Add a peer review component and require students to comment on at least two other Prezis. The possibilities are endless!

If you have gifted students n your class, offer Prezi as one alternative for sharing extensions to the regular curriculum. If they already know the material, have them investigate a related process or example and share it in the form of a Prezi.

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Twiducate - Twiducate

Grades
2 to 12
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Looking for a microblogging (think twitter) alternative for collaboration or networking in your classes? Use Twiducate to create a microblogging platform for the students in your classes...more
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Looking for a microblogging (think twitter) alternative for collaboration or networking in your classes? Use Twiducate to create a microblogging platform for the students in your classes without venturing into the more complex public interactions of Twitter. Maintain privacy and a safe structure for collaborative learning. Post questions to elicit responses or use the safe environment for students to receive feedback on works in progress. Not sure about this resource? Twiducate was created by a group of teachers in Southwest Ontario to provide this type of service to students and teachers.

tag(s): microblogging (44), social networking (112), twitter (50)

In the Classroom

Create an account easily with information about your school and title. Though an email is required, create your account without email verification. Make a class name and code that students can use for Twiducate. Manage many options through your home page including adding students, entering bookmarks to share with students, viewing the public timeline (you may find a teacher to collaborate and share with,) and create more classes. Students do not need to register themselves and are added in through the teacher. As students are added, a password is generated for them.

Use this safe, private, closed system to blog and network in your classes. Students are able to access this site outside of school and collaborate there as well. Invite parents into this network and let them see what is going on. Teachers are able to moderate all posts and remove any unwanted posts. Consider printing the screen of student names and passwords for a hard copy in order to access the information. Be sure to discuss rules of etiquette for posting and commenting in order to teach students effective use of these types of services. Be sure to include actions for broken rules. Check your school policies about using such a resource and whether special permission slips may be required.

The possibilities are endless. Use for posting homework assignments. Share and publish bookmarks for students to use. Respond to students trying to get test dates and other assignments changed! Collaborate among small or large groups. Create study groups for review and learning of information. Use small time information gathering more effectively: Assign every two students a concept to research and share learning with the rest of the class for discussion. How can you be sure that each student has completed work? Have them blog their information through Twiducate. Each group would have a specific key word that they use at the start of their posts. Search for a keyword at the top of the screen to bring up all those related posts! Watching a movie that requires students to answer questions? Post prepared questions throughout the movie to elicit responses from students. Allow students the ability to blog their reactions to documentaries and work together for understanding. During poetry month, have student do oral poetry reading while others microblog their reactions to the poem as they listen. Share weekly links and comments about current events via microblog. If you are willing to risk it invite students to microblog questions and reactions to teacher and student presentations in progress. Suddenly listening is an active endeavor! Provide this resource for groups to collaborate in and out of class and offer options for learning at any time.

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Old Man and the Sea - Alexander Petrov

Grades
6 to 12
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The Old Man and the Sea, written by Ernest Hemingway, is one of the cornerstones of the literary canon. This beautifully illustrated animated film version enhances students'...more
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The Old Man and the Sea, written by Ernest Hemingway, is one of the cornerstones of the literary canon. This beautifully illustrated animated film version enhances students' comprehension at all skill levels and helps teachers introduce students to the rich and varied elements of this classic story. The aesthetically pleasing presentation of Hemingway's vivid imagery serves to present the story in an enjoyable and memorable fashion. Additionally, Turkish subtitles are included in a closed captioning option, which can easily be turned on and off by clicking on the CC button located directly below the video.

This site has all the bells and whistles that Google presents in a user-friendly format. Google Videos are ready for full screen view on a projector or interactive whiteboard and are readily available for download, by simply clicking the "Download" button. The strength of this film being a Google-video is the ease and quality of viewing. The play page has a large video player and caters to all of you multi-taskers who want to keep the current video playing, while you also click on the "Related Videos" links to help you discover and search results for more related films. The Grid View Rollover Function sustains uninterrupted viewing while allowing you to move your mouse over multiple thumbnails of the video. Another feature is the ability to jump directly into the video at the point where captions of interest appear, which is extremely handy during class discussions and to review or reference a particular snippet. You can also choose to sign up for a free Google Account which will allow you to browse and play videos directly from the home page.

tag(s): literature (275)

In the Classroom

This resource may be used in several different ways, depending upon the teacher's needs and goals. Although no curriculum packet or guide is provided, this site is a good resource to enhance the study of The Old Man in the Sea, as well as to meet the needs of the Turkish speaking population. This animated film adapted version can serve as a starting point to acquaint students with Hemingway's well-known literary work and introduce imagery and other significant literary elements. It can also be used as an extension activity that lends itself to oral and written expression, or as a supplementary aid to understanding the text. The subtitles are valuable for bilingual-Turkish speaking, ELL, and ESL students. Use your imagination to spark interesting discussions about the passages that might be difficult to understand in the text, develop a compare-contrast learning activity by using an online tool such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here), study the literary elements of the story, or interpret the artistic value.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Lexipedia (Beta) - Vantage Linguistics

Grades
2 to 12
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Lexipedia is "Where Words Have Meaning." Type in a word and see what happens! This site creates a web of related words. Each color represents a different part of speech ...more
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Lexipedia is "Where Words Have Meaning." Type in a word and see what happens! This site creates a web of related words. Each color represents a different part of speech or relationship to the original word - nouns, verbs, synonyms, antonyms and even fuzzynyms! Words become more than isolated strings of letters and part of a greater web of language.

tag(s): antonyms (26), dictionaries (56), mean (25), synonyms (38), vocabulary (323), vocabulary development (125)

In the Classroom

Explore this site on interactive whiteboard or projector to show students how to improve writing with descriptive words. Consider allowing students to share a favorite word of the day for 30 seconds on your interactive whiteboard at the start of class. Use this in a word study unit by covering up the original word.Students will then try to discover the word based on the word relationships found around the word. Build understanding of parts of speech through this tool every time you look up a word. Reinforce these concepts for visual learners continuously by using the same colors every time you highlight on your interactive whiteboard. World language teachers can also type in words to demonstrate and expand vocabulary in Spanish, French, German, Dutch, and Italian. Special ed teachers, especially those in speech/language will love this tool to help students SEE relationships between words. Encourage your language-delayed students to look up words and build "word sense" even when they are familiar with the word's meaning. Make this site available as a reference on classroom computers and on your class web page.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Hatchet - Mountain City Elementary

Grades
4 to 7
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A great resource for a book study on Gary Paulsen's novel, Hatchet. Online quizzes, lesson plans, vocabulary, writing prompts and more make this site worth using. The online...more
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A great resource for a book study on Gary Paulsen's novel, Hatchet. Online quizzes, lesson plans, vocabulary, writing prompts and more make this site worth using. The online quizzes give students, and their teacher, instant feedback on comprehension.

In the Classroom

Use this site as a resource for a book study. Print many of the materials to keep on hand. The online quizzes offer a quick assessment. As a culminating project, have students create online books about characters or themes in Hatchet, using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here.

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Create a Hero Trophy - Swati Mody-Thirteen Ed Online

Grades
6 to 8
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Are you looking for an idea to spark the beginning or culmination of your school year? Perhaps you favor jump starting with a timeless theme that lends itself throughout the ...more
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Are you looking for an idea to spark the beginning or culmination of your school year? Perhaps you favor jump starting with a timeless theme that lends itself throughout the entire year. This hero unit is complete with ongoing lesson plans, links, printable handouts, activities, and projects for students to research and write about the lives of some famous American heroes. They will examine the qualities that make or made these people heroes and how the time period they lived in influenced their images as heroes. After reading about some famous heroes, students will take a look at some lesser-known heroes as well. They will reflect on critical thinking questions, such as how those heroes are different from the heroes that students admire and respect today. National standards for English/Language Arts, History, and Technology are included.

tag(s): heroes (24), writing (359)

In the Classroom

This hero unit includes endless ideas, from comparing and contrasting real life heroes with fictional superheroes. Have your students try an online Venn diagram tool such as the one (reviewed here).

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Year by Year - Infoplease

Grades
3 to 12
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Build students' sense of historical context year by year. Help them to realize that Gershwin did not write during the Vietnam War and that World War II preceded the Beatles. ...more
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Build students' sense of historical context year by year. Help them to realize that Gershwin did not write during the Vietnam War and that World War II preceded the Beatles. This site gives an overview of any year students click on from 1900 to the present, including cultural events, national and world news, politics, sports, prize winners, movie releases, deaths, and --for more recent years -- links to news focusing on other topics such as science and people. It provides an interesting summary of any particular year; most students find it interesting to check the year of their birth and those of their family members. Many highlighted keywords link to the Infoplease encyclopedia and other reference sources.

tag(s): news (261), politics (99), sports (97)

In the Classroom

Ask your students to visit the site and create a multimedia presentation from the information about any specific year they see there. Or have them compare life in two different decades. Have students create online books using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here. Or challenge students to create an online poster using Padlet (reviewed here).

When studying literature, point out this site as a source authors might use for cultural background information in their writing. Pick out the details while reading a novel, for example, that might be found at this site. Or before studying a historical period, use this site as an anticipatory set or "activator" on a projector or interactive whiteboard. Have students collect information tidbits and predict what might be put into the site for the current year.

Ask your ESL/ELL students to share similar information about the years they were born and the events that occurred in their home cultures. Use the site when preparing a unit on summarizing or informational paragraphs, showing the students how to select and condense relevant information from the site into a few sentences.

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Making Stopmotion Movies - Kevin Hodgson

Grades
2 to 8
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Energize your Writers Workshop by creating stopmotion movies. This is a highly engaging way to teach your students about story elements, dialogue, character development, and storyboarding....more
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Energize your Writers Workshop by creating stopmotion movies. This is a highly engaging way to teach your students about story elements, dialogue, character development, and storyboarding. Filmmakers can first organize their ideas on downloadable planning sheets. Make the characters for the movie out of clay, wiki stix, paper, or even found objects. Some free animation and movie software links are available. Step by step directions on how to create a stopmotion movie, and Windows Moviemaker, and iMovie tutorials are available.

tag(s): acting (27), creativity (109), movies (65)

In the Classroom

Encourage your students to revise and edit their writing by turning their stories into stopmotion movies. Have students work in small groups to visually re-create events from their own writing. This will help develop stronger characters, dialogue, and draw attention to the elements of time and place. The planning sheets are a helpful tool to help students examine story structure and sequence. Alternatively, develop reading comprehension and fluency by asking students to re-create a fable or folktale. The new term for this is "Readers stopmotion." Teachers may want to be comfortable using a digital camera and movie making programs before embarking on this project."

Challenge students to share their videos on a site such as TeacherTube reviewed here or post them on your class website. Get parent permission before posting any student work on this sharing site and check with your school administrator to be sure that your school allows students to post videos on-line. Teachers may want to be comfortable using a digital camera/webcam and movie making programs before embarking on this project.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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