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Backpack Practice - Backpack Practice

Grades
K to 12
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Backpack Practice, available only via Google Chrome, offers practice with skills from preK number recognition through Algebra and ACT/SAT test prep. Choose from topics such as math,...more
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Backpack Practice, available only via Google Chrome, offers practice with skills from preK number recognition through Algebra and ACT/SAT test prep. Choose from topics such as math, science, history, or languages to begin. Be sure to allow the program to access your computer microphone when prompted. Some answers are given as a spoken response. View the image and respond to the prompt: identify the president, say the number of dots on the dice, etc. If unsure, you can pass. Your number of correct responses and passes display on the left of the screen throughout the task. Be sure to speak clearly for Backpack Practice to recognize your response. Our editors did notice that the program sometimes gets behind in "hearing" your response, and we also noticed an occasional typo.

tag(s): addition (251), animals (276), continents (50), countries (77), division (172), grammar (216), map skills (80), money (193), multiplication (227), numbers (204), phonics (75), preK (279), presidents (130), speech (92), sports (96), states (163), subtraction (208), test prep (96), time (144), vocabulary (324)

In the Classroom

Share Backpack Practice with students for a quick practice of math facts, continents, presidents, and much more. Explore the various topics available for your grade level/subject area. Challenge students to improve their time or score for completing activities. Since many of the activities require speaking, not typing, this site is useful for all ages and abilities. Provide this link on your class website for students to access at home (if they have Google Chrome).

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Earth Engine - Google

Grades
7 to 12
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This free collection uses satellite imagery to show changes in land use across the Earth since 1984. This landing page explains the time lapse project and showcases a group of ...more
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This free collection uses satellite imagery to show changes in land use across the Earth since 1984. This landing page explains the time lapse project and showcases a group of Featured Sites using time lapse satellite imagery. Enter a city in the search bar at the top to find data from other areas. Note: Keep in mind that imagery may not be available in all areas since the year 1984. This tool however shows exactly how areas have changed in many key areas such as the Amazon Rainforest, Dubai, and Las Vegas. Look at other natural areas such as the Aral Sea or the Columbia Glacier. This site uses Google Maps and/or the Google Earth browser plugin, so pretest it to be sure it works on the computer(s) you want to use in a classroom.

tag(s): biomes (116), ecosystems (88), environment (317), geology (81)

In the Classroom

Use on an Interactive Whiteboard or projector to see the land use changes in various locations "happen" in an instant. Discuss the reasons for the changes or brainstorm possible reasons. Use this as an introductory activity to various ecology or environmental topics. Research the native plants and animals displaced by human expansion in these locations. What environmental impacts are occurring in these areas? How have other locations changed in response to new uses such as Marcellus shale drilling, mountaintop removal for coal, etc? Discuss the possible changes and search out time lapse images that show changes. Have students create a "wanted" poster naming the "villains" who caused lasting damage to the environment, using a tool such as Poster My Wall, reviewed here.

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WordSense.eu - dictionary - Dirk Moosbach

Grades
7 to 12
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WordSense.eu is part dictionary and part thesaurus, based on Wiktionary information. Type in any word in the search bar to view word origin, definitions, synonyms, and more. This site...more
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WordSense.eu is part dictionary and part thesaurus, based on Wiktionary information. Type in any word in the search bar to view word origin, definitions, synonyms, and more. This site provides a multitude of information about the words. Click on underlined words within a definition to view their definitions. Our editors note that this is an unabridged dictionary including words not appropriate for school. Discuss consequences of inappropriate use and/or avoiding using this resource with immature students. .

tag(s): dictionaries (56), prefixes (16), root words (13), suffixes (14), thesaurus (24), vocabulary (324), vocabulary development (126), word study (80)

In the Classroom

Use Word Sense on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) to explore word origins, definitions, and more. This is a great site to use as a resource for a word of the day or word of the week. Choose a word and have students create a word cloud of the important terms they learn from this site using a tool such as Wordle (reviewed here), Tagxedo (reviewed here), or WordItOut (reviewed here). Share this site on your class website or blog for students to access at home for writing projects. Use this tool to decipher words when studying word roots and affixes. As students prepare for the SAT, have them explore and attempt to figure out words based on roots, etc.

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Cuban Missile Crisis - Harvard Kennedy School Belfer Center

Grades
8 to 12
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The Cuban Missile Crisis offers a great resource for learning and teaching about the 1962 missile crisis. Explore the site to find many primary documents, an excellent timeline, and...more
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The Cuban Missile Crisis offers a great resource for learning and teaching about the 1962 missile crisis. Explore the site to find many primary documents, an excellent timeline, and lessons. The Educators section of the site includes many tools such as lesson plans, reading lists, and videos. If your district blocks YouTube, then the videos may not be viewable. You could always view the videos at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid reviewed here to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): 1960s (30), kennedy (27), presidents (130)

In the Classroom

Bookmark this site (or save it in your favorites). Use the resources for any unit that includes the Cuban Missile Crisis, presidents, or John F. Kennedy. Watch videos on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Share a link on your class website for students to view at home. Have students use Fakebook (reviewed here) to create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook about any of the characters involved with the crisis. Use an online tool such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here) to compare the point of view of the U.S. vs Cuba or to compare outcomes based on possible decisions made during the crisis.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Map Treasure Hunt - Class Tools

Grades
5 to 12
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Create a virtual treasure hunt using the tools and maps on this resource. Follow simple directions to add clues to find any location on the globe. When finished, save to ...more
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Create a virtual treasure hunt using the tools and maps on this resource. Follow simple directions to add clues to find any location on the globe. When finished, save to receive a unique url for your treasure hunt. Players follow your clues to find coins at each location along the way. After finding a coin, clues provide information for the next stop. There is a small learning curve for following and creating treasure hunts. But once you figure out the first one, the activity becomes quite simple to understand. See a very short treasure hunt sample here.

tag(s): game based learning (103), map skills (80), maps (288)

In the Classroom

Add virtual treasure hunts to many classroom lessons. Share treasure hunts on your projector or interactive whiteboard, perhaps for students to do as a center. Create treasure hunts to announce field trips, locate areas of interest for social studies lessons, or point out locations in novels and other reading material. Have students create their own virtual treasure hunt for a favorite location, where they were born, or to begin a biography of a famous person or series of historic events such as the civil rights movement. In science class, have students create a treasure hunt of habitats or environmental disaster sites. Create student-made mapquests for math skill practice as students calculate distances, map scale, and trip costs using a treasure hunt.

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Map Your Recipe - Wilfried Houjebek

Grades
5 to 12
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Enter any recipe to find to map the origins of vegetables/plants included. After submitting the recipe a world map shows the highlighted locations of the original sources for the vegetables....more
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Enter any recipe to find to map the origins of vegetables/plants included. After submitting the recipe a world map shows the highlighted locations of the original sources for the vegetables. These are the sources where the pants first came from, not necessarily where they can be found today. Also find a list of countries and their products. Click the example recipes included or copy and paste your own recipes right into the ingredient box. Our editors noticed that some fruits also could be mapped. Try entering cocoa to find out where the cocoa beans first came form.

tag(s): christmas (64), cooking (34), holidays (147), maps (288), nutrition (154), plants (144), species (29), thanksgiving (37)

In the Classroom

Use Map Your Recipe when teaching holiday traditions such as Thanksgiving or Christmas Around the World. Use this engaging way to find out where the vegetables (and some fruits) were originally domesticated. Include with a geography lesson and attempt to find recipes with ingredients native to countries located on the map and to your own region. In science class, talk about the conditions that allow a plant to find a new home on another continent. Are all plant species welcome? What conditions must be present for a plant to thrive in a new location?

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Mount Washington Observatory - Mount Washington Observatory

Grades
5 to 12
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The Mount Washington Observatory in New Hampshire is the "Home of the World's Worst Weather," but they also provide one of the world's best interactive weather websites. The combination...more
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The Mount Washington Observatory in New Hampshire is the "Home of the World's Worst Weather," but they also provide one of the world's best interactive weather websites. The combination of extreme cold, wet, high winds, icing conditions, and consistent low visibility helped Mount Washington earn its coveted title as the "Home of the World's Worst Weather." The Observatory continues to record and disseminate weather information. It also serves as a benchmark station for many types of severe weather research and testing. The Mount Washington station is one of the only mountaintop scientific stations to have remained in continuous operation with an active and expanding mission. They offer an unparalleled look at the Home of the World's Worst Weather. You can also purchase the opportunity to bring the science and excitement of Mount Washington into your classroom with live, interactive video conferencing technology. Premium content on the site is available for purchase. This review only includes the free portions.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): new hampshire (5), snow (21), weather (188), webcams (6)

In the Classroom

Connect your classroom through the Mount Washington webcams, weather forecasts, photo galleries, and more. The Mount Washington Observatory website provides diverse, innovative educational opportunities from its summit into your classroom. Close your textbooks and view the magnificent multimedia on the site. Explore the photo galleries for a vivid view of the everyday life on the mountain. Use the photos for writing prompts where students need to integrate weather related information into their creative writing. As long as you provide a direct link to the Mount Washington Observatory website you have permission to use their photos on your site. The site offers seven different live web cam views to explore with your students. Record your own weather observations from the webcams. Listen to an mp3 of the weather forecast from Mount Washington. Challenge your students to create their own weather forecast recordings. Explore the Frequently Asked Questions page to learn how the Mount Washington Weather Observatory works. Have students track weather data at two contrasting locations (such as this one and one in the tropics) and graph them both on the same graph to show the differences. Include this link in your Snow Day links on your class web page for students who think the weather is bad where YOU are...!
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John F Kennedy White House Diary - John F Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum

Grades
4 to 12
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Click an interactive calendar to experience the day by day schedule of President John F. Kennedy, Jr., including digital scans of his actual appointment diary for any given day as ...more
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Click an interactive calendar to experience the day by day schedule of President John F. Kennedy, Jr., including digital scans of his actual appointment diary for any given day as well as video, audio, and photos of the day's events. Choose any date on the calendar to view information or scroll through page by page. Choose View Appointments to see a copy of the appointment calendar for the date or click In The News to view New York Times stories from the same dates.

tag(s): civil rights (117), kennedy (27), presidents (130), vietnam (36)

In the Classroom

This is a must-use site for any lesson or unit about John F Kennedy, presidents, the Vietnam War, or Civil Rights! What, exactly, does a president do? Include information on timelines to demonstrate what the president's schedule looked like on important dates. Have students create timelines (with music, photos, videos, and more) using Capzles (reviewed here). Have students explore on their own then choose a date to investigate further. Use a tool such as Padlet, (reviewed here) to present information.
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Intel Education Units - Intel

Grades
K to 12
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Find engaging, challenging units to begin your Common Core journey. Intel Education Units are complete and include assessment tools. Search by grade level or subject. Find the basics...more
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Find engaging, challenging units to begin your Common Core journey. Intel Education Units are complete and include assessment tools. Search by grade level or subject. Find the basics for planning units. Also find sequencing maps, sequencing activities, classification charts, and prioritizing listings. Instructional Strategies include activating prior knowledge, graphic organizers, cooperative learning, and questioning strategies.

tag(s): literacy (103)

In the Classroom

Begin your curriculum planning here. After reviewing exemplary units, use as they are, or modify to fit the needs of your students, content, or even resources adding your own personal touch. They will inspire you to dig deeper and go further with Common Core! Be sure to bookmark this site (or save in your favorites) as your go to resource for Common Core.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Engaging Students With Primary Sources - Smithsonian National Museum of American History

Grades
6 to 12
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The Smithsonian Institution offers a printable guide to using primary sources in any classroom. View examples of how to do it and suggestion! Explore each of the main sections including...more
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The Smithsonian Institution offers a printable guide to using primary sources in any classroom. View examples of how to do it and suggestion! Explore each of the main sections including documents, photographs, oral histories, and objects for ideas and tips. Each activity is aligned to National Center for History in the Schools standards. The guide is in PDF format for easy printing and use.

tag(s): primary sources (86)

In the Classroom

Bookmark and save this site for use throughout the year as a guide for using primary sources. Use some of the lesson strategies with other primary source collections
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Racial Dot Map - Dustin A. Cable

Grades
7 to 12
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Get a snapshot of America using this visualization of the geographic distribution, population density, and racial diversity of the American people. The map represents every neighborhood...more
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Get a snapshot of America using this visualization of the geographic distribution, population density, and racial diversity of the American people. The map represents every neighborhood in the United States. Each dot represents one person residing in the United States at the location during the count of the 2010 Census. Each ethnicity is represented by a different color dot. Zoom in and out as needed.

tag(s): diversity (36), maps (288), population (60)

In the Classroom

Discuss the cultural, political, economic, or geographic principles that affect the distribution of the dots on the map. Create blog posts, wiki edits, or other projects students can create to identify the reasons over time for the distribution in the map. The information gathered from this site might also be helpful in talking about regional and local political representation during election years. The opportunities for critical thinking abound with this site. Begin by asking, "Why does it look like this?"

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Ice Age Floods - Tom Foster

Grades
8 to 12
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Ice Age Floods offers photographs, information, and video explanations. Learn about how the Ice Age created various lakes and dramatically altered the Earth's landscape. Explore...more
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Ice Age Floods offers photographs, information, and video explanations. Learn about how the Ice Age created various lakes and dramatically altered the Earth's landscape. Explore different sections with specific lakes and areas or choose feature types to learn about different features such as drop stones and coulees. Choose the video section to explore the many videos offered including some interesting 2 minute Geology sessions.

tag(s): glaciers (14), landforms (45), rock cycle (9), rocks (49), volcanoes (61)

In the Classroom

Use as part of a flipped lesson. Have students watch videos or read portions of the site then have students use a mapping tool such as Mapskip (reviewed here) to create a map of local landforms (with audio stories and pictures included)! Share videos and site information on your interactive whiteboard for viewing together.
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GLOBE Scientists' Blog - The GLOBE Program

Grades
4 to 12
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Connect with students and scientists all over the world conducting science using GLOBE. GLOBE Scientists post their thoughts, comments, and philosophies about science topics...more
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Connect with students and scientists all over the world conducting science using GLOBE. GLOBE Scientists post their thoughts, comments, and philosophies about science topics that are sure to meet your curricular needs. Reading the blog entries is open to everyone (no registration). You must register with an email address at the bottom of the page for this free site to share comments and discuss the topics. Anonymous comments are not allowed, and moderators approve all posts before showing on the blog. This is a great science collaboration location!

tag(s): asia (73), blogs (88), climate (92), earth (228), europe (75), scientists (68), seasons (37), soil (17), watersheds (16), weather (188)

In the Classroom

Have students create a word cloud of the important terms they learn from this site using a tool such as Wordle (reviewed here), Tagxedo (reviewed here), or WordItOut (reviewed here). Use this great site for your students to interact with students and scientists all over the world. Have your students keep a journal of their interaction on the site. Post questions from class discussions and labs for GLOBE Scientists to answer. Teach digital citizenship skills (commenting etiquette) and blogging basics to your students. The text portions are challenging, so you should pair weaker readers with a partner as they research on this site. Include this site on your class web page for students and parents to access as a reference. Watch the website to see if your students' comments generate further discussion, and to read new topics as they develop. Encourage gifted students interested in science to participate in this community as a chance to learn above their grade level.

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Pulitzer Center Lesson Plans - Pulitzer Center

Grades
3 to 12
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Find lesson plans at the Pulitzer Center for grades 3-12 that identify global issues and ways to address them. Topics include subjects such as International Adoptions: Ethics and Effects...more
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Find lesson plans at the Pulitzer Center for grades 3-12 that identify global issues and ways to address them. Topics include subjects such as International Adoptions: Ethics and Effects and America's Responsibility for the Welfare and Safety of Chinese Workers and many other intriguing topics. Each lesson plan includes big ideas, essential questions, Common Core standards, vocabulary, assessments, and additional resources. Bring lessons to life through journalist visits (in larger cities) or Skype visits (using the request a class visit option on the site).

tag(s): africa (180), careers (132), china (66), debate (41), earthquakes (48), ethics (16), food chains (22), hiv/aids (18), india (36), journalism (46), media literacy (58), water (130), women (101)

In the Classroom

Use the lesson plans on the site as a resource for discussing and debating global issues. If there is no time to complete a full unit, explore resources from each topic for ideas to use in your classroom. For example, try the ideas on interviewing individuals who migrated to the United States offered in the "How Did I Become the Person That I Am" unit. Share this site with students interested in journalism careers as a resource for learning more about the profession and some of its members.

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History Labs - A Guided Approach to Historical Inquiry in the K-12 Classroom - UMBC Center for History Education

Grades
2 to 12
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The Center for History Education offers this resource to teach a variety of topics in American History via an inquiry approach. Sample topics include Native Americans, Colonization,...more
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The Center for History Education offers this resource to teach a variety of topics in American History via an inquiry approach. Sample topics include Native Americans, Colonization, Civil Rights, Slavery, the American Revolution, and many more. All labs include central questions, source materials, and step by step explanations to implement the lab. The approach is well suited to social studies literacy standards of Common Core, as students explore and evaluate sources (informational texts) and eventually "Develop, present, defend, and refine their evidence-based answers." Choose from History Labs or Lesson Plans to find resources then scroll through the dates to view available materials. Use links to print materials in PDF format. Although the site title indicates materials for all levels of students, most resources are geared toward middle and high school grades. Some of the videos are hosted on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable. You could always view the videos at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid reviewed here to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): african american (113), american revolution (86), civil rights (117), civil war (145), colonial america (107), colonization (16), great depression (24), iran (12), jefferson (19), kennedy (27), native americans (78), roosevelt (16), slavery (72), washington (36), womens suffrage (26), world war 2 (142)

In the Classroom

Bookmark and save this site for use with any American History topic as a complete lesson or to offer another angle on current lessons. Have students create a simple infographic sharing their findings using Easel.ly, reviewed here or Venngage reviewed here. Before beginning a unit, have students brainstorm or collect ideas on a collaborative bulletin board like Scrumblr, reviewed here (quick start- no membership required!).
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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GR8CTZ - Great Cities of the World - Vadim Temkin

Grades
8 to 12
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GR8CTZ - Great Cities of the World is a geoguessing game where you are transported to a world city and have to guess the location based on views from Google ...more
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GR8CTZ - Great Cities of the World is a geoguessing game where you are transported to a world city and have to guess the location based on views from Google Maps street views. Look and walk around a bit before attempting a guess. You have three tries to get it right. Start the game after choosing options such as levels, language (English, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish), and city subset options. Although very simple looking, this is an intriguing option for exploring the world without leaving home!

tag(s): countries (77), cross cultural understanding (115), map skills (80), maps (288)

In the Classroom

Use this tool on an Interactive Whiteboard (or projector) with an entire class. Students can work as a class, individually, or in groups to identify locations based on clues. Use the clues to discuss information about social structure, livelihood, religion, landforms, and other cultural information. Use this information to uncover and correct misconceptions and discuss cultural differences in countries outside the US. Go beyond the map to learn about the various foods, agriculture, and other aspects of their lives. Research the local ecosystem to determine native plants and animals found in the country. Create a poem or story set in that locale using information learned through research. Are you a connected educator? Find other educators around the World using Twitter (reviewed here) to make connections between classrooms. Join the Across the World Once a Week project ( here) to share about the culture where you live.

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New Bedford Whaling Museum - New Bedford Whaling Museum

Grades
6 to 12
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The New Bedford Whaling Museum focuses on the impact of the whaling industry and specifically the interaction between whaling and the port of New Bedford, Massachusetts. Of interest...more
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The New Bedford Whaling Museum focuses on the impact of the whaling industry and specifically the interaction between whaling and the port of New Bedford, Massachusetts. Of interest to those studying one of the 18th and 19th century's leading industries, the museum also offers insight into the material culture of New England, the life and habitat of whales, and the craft of ship building. The site offers a closer look at a number of current and past special exhibits, as well as a searchable database of artifacts in the current collection. Don't miss the special reading lists and other resources.

tag(s): 1700s (23), 1800s (44), colonial america (107), marine biology (33), whales (16)

In the Classroom

The museum's exhibits focused on the Arctic and on the migrations and habitats of whales are useful from a historical perspective. Consider using early maps and photographs from the exploration of Arctic regions to compare with current maps for a discussion on global climate change. Use information about current and past whale habitats to illustrate the impact of ocean changes on the largest of its inhabitants. Students doing independent research will find the individual images of the museum's extensive collection useful as well. Have students act as curators for an imaginary special exhibit, perhaps creating a map using Mapskip (reviewed here) to show the artifact locations and tell the stories of their "artifacts." (Simplify adding images by inserting them using the online urls of the artifact images from the museum catalog. To find and copy the url for an online image, RIGHT click on it to "copy image url" or "get info," depending on your browser and computer type.)

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Documentary Tube - DocumentaryTube.com

Grades
4 to 12
2 Favorites 0  Comments
  
Watch full length documentaries online for free. Find your favorites through daily suggestions, browsing the top 100, or searching categories: 9/11, activism, art, aviation, business,...more
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Watch full length documentaries online for free. Find your favorites through daily suggestions, browsing the top 100, or searching categories: 9/11, activism, art, aviation, business, comedy, crime, disaster, drugs, economics, environmental, food/drink, health, media, medicine, music, nature, performing arts, philosophy, political, religion, science, social, sport, strange, technology, travel, and many more. Look at film festivals and films featured in each. If you do not find what you are looking for, submit your request. A link to Amazon brings you to DVD's. Some are free, and others are for sale.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): video (253)

In the Classroom

Discover the power of documentaries while studying point of view, primary and secondary resources, and debate skills. Examine the aspects shown in documentaries and help students find structure to provide an unbiased research project. Challenge existing knowledge in many areas. Help students become active thinkers and become involved in current events. Sharpen your own understandings.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Documentary Storm - 2013 DocumentaryStorm

Grades
4 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
  
Dive into Documentary Storm to discover 100% free documentary films. The goal of the website is to share knowledge spread ideas, and have fun. Search the different channels to find...more
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Dive into Documentary Storm to discover 100% free documentary films. The goal of the website is to share knowledge spread ideas, and have fun. Search the different channels to find exactly what you are seeking. Topics included are art, biography, conspiracy, culture, drugs, environment, health, indie films, lifestyle, mockumentaries, money, nature, politics, psychology, religion, science, society, sports, technology, war, and many more. Search in the top 100 documentaries, or click use"surprise me." Connect with Facebook, RSS, Twitter, or email.

tag(s): video (253)

In the Classroom

With documentaries challenge your students' understanding of food, history, politics, or people. Use to provide another point of view which might not be available in traditional text books. Use to explain primary and secondary sources, as well as an example of a way to extend thinking. Provide a documentary as an example for your students to do an in depth research project. Use documentaries to challenge knowledge, create new knowledge, and learn.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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10 Amazing Examples of Architecture Inspired by Mathematics - Alison Nastasi

Grades
6 to 12
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Take a look at 10 structures inspired by mathematical principles at this intriguing site. Each image includes a short description of the structure along with information on the mathematics...more
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Take a look at 10 structures inspired by mathematical principles at this intriguing site. Each image includes a short description of the structure along with information on the mathematics involved in the design. This site is a quick read that is sure to inspire many opportunities for math discussions and further exploration!
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): architecture (83), geometric shapes (163)

In the Classroom

Explore this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Challenge students to find other examples of mathematical concepts used in architecture. Art teachers and math teachers can cooperate -- or simply connect to their mathematical or artistic students using this site. Have cooperative learning groups create online books demonstrating their findings using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here. Have students use a mapping tool such as Mapskip (reviewed here) to create a map of interesting architecture (with audio stories and pictures included)! Challenge students to discover other examples of math in the real world and share using an annotated image including text boxes and related links using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here.

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