Grades9 to 12
While it is exciting to see an image of the actual documents describing events we know from our study of history, the site falls short of being "great." Yet the images themselves are unique enough to be useful -- with some caveats. The text of the papers is not searchable nor do they allow you to zoom in on particular parts of the document. There is no searchable data base of information overall. The links under "education" and "resources" take you to off site content (preview carefully). In one case, the text that accompanies the images of an edition of a historical newspaper references Wikipedia as its source; teachers will want to discuss with your class the risks/benefits of wikipedia as a source.
In the ClassroomThere are many uses for this site. Use this source to demonstrate primary resources. Share the short video clips on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Have cooperative learning groups investigate a specific topic on this site and report back to the class with a multimedia presentation. Challenge students to create their own videos and share using a site such as SchoolTube (reviewed here).
Grades2 to 12
tag(s): maps (298)
In the ClassroomAssign students various countries, regions, or continents to make comparisons. Identify the biological, geographical, cultural, and social issues that exist in the world, based on what the pictures show and what their research uncovers. Bring a greater understanding to current economic and environmental issues in many countries. World language (or World Cultures) classes can help students understand the cultures of the countries where the language is spoken. Compare specific attributes of two countries using an online Venn Diagram, such as the one reviewed here. Another idea: have cooperative learning groups use this resource to create online books about the country of their tour using a resource such as Bookemon,
GradesK to 12
In the ClassroomMake this treasury a starting point for multicultural study of holidays around the world or for a more in depth study of Jewish traditions. Assign student groups to learn about specific aspects of the holiday and share their findings on a class holiday guide wiki. ith younger students, share specific links on a projector or interactive whiteboard and give students a chance to share and compare their own holiday traditions with the ones mentioned. You could even use some of these resources in upper elementary or middle school as reading comprehension exercises during the holiday season: write a summary or formulate a statement of a text-based site's main idea.
Grades3 to 8
In the ClassroomFor a whole group activity, share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. This site would be great to use with small groups of students. Have students work together and see how long it takes for them to get water to the city. Use the manual to help students identify and learn about the five different structures (covered trench, tunnel, pressurized pipe, wall, and arcade). Compare the ancient structures with the way we move water today, including modern day aqueducts. Have groups share their success stories by narrating a picture using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here.
Grades2 to 12
In the ClassroomUse this site when discussing world cultures or economics. Use this site as an anticipatory set or "activator" to introduce a unit or lesson on a projector or interactive whiteboard. To avoid displaying certain content, you can selectively take screenshots (CTRL+PrtScrn on Windows, Command+Shft+4 on Mac) or copy images temporarily into PowerPoint slides or a whiteboard file-- with credit--to show them alone. Use it to jump off into a discussion or unit on some of the countries displayed here. Have students create original photo essays online following this model, using Have students create original photo essays online following this model, using Slidestory, reviewed here. Slidestory allows you to narrate the slides and images. Challenge students to find photos and then narrate the photos as if in a news report. To find Creative Commons images for student projects (with credit, of course), try Compfight, reviewed here. Other areas where this website might be useful are when you do units on world education, world poverty, etc. Have students do comparison/contrast essays using these photos as introductions to the differences between classrooms. Or have students compare/contrast using a site such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here). The many small details that differ from place to place would make getting details and examples easy. Ask students also to extrapolate differences in teaching methods just by viewing these photos.
Grades2 to 10
tag(s): clothing (8)
In the ClassroomUse this site with beginning world language lessons; select appropriate slides from the cultures speaking the target language. Have students consult with relatives about other forms of traditional dress and draw their own color illustrations. Have students find photos and create a multimedia presentation to share with the class. Try Compfight reviewed here to locate Creative Commons images students may use. Challenge students to narrate a picture using Slidestory, reviewed here. Use the lesson plan as a jumping off point for student research projects on other countries and cultures. Younger students may enjoy printing the clothing slides and creating puzzles with similar shaped pieces. Mix the pieces and have students assemble the clothing correctly and name the countries involved.
Grades2 to 12
tag(s): china (63)
In the ClassroomShare this collection as a starter page for projects when your class is studying China. Have students create their own cross-cultural projects using an online poster tool such as Web Poster Wizard, reviewed here or a comic creator from this collection.
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomCreate a new map by entering the details such as a title. Choose from the template styles given. Preview the template, zoom in and out, and scroll around the mindmap using the simple tools. Click the "Edit Content" tab to change each node in your mindmap. Edit the name of the node, the description, and upload or link to a picture. Nodes can also link to a You tube video. When done, click preview to not only see the finished mindmap, but to publish on the Spicynodes site or copy the embed code for placing on a wiki, blog, or other site.
There are countless possibilities at this mental mapping site. Demonstrate the activity on an interactive whiteboard or projector, and then allow students to try to create their own graphic organizers. Use this site for literature activities, research projects, social studies, or science topics of study. Use this site to create family trees. Have students collaborate together (online) to create group mind maps or review charts before tests on a given subject. Create a site map that guides users throughout the features of your class website.
Collaborative Projects: Have small groups research together a topic such as unsolved mysteries of the world, planets, legends from their countries, plants, famous mathematicians, or any topic that can be broken down into parts. Each student would have their own node and color and would then upload pictures, videos, links, and other information they have found about their part of the topic. If the whole class is researching a topic, students with the "like" assignments could get together to share information and create their part of the small group node (also know as jigsaw in cooperative learning). Once all the nodes are completed, the original small group would share information with each other. There are a variety of ways students could use this mindmap. You could just leave it at the small group share out. Or, you could have the groups decide what information is important enough to present to the class and put their ideas on a Writeboard document reviewed here. A third step could be that once they've honed down the information, they could create a presentation for the class in a variety of formats: Haiku Deck reviewed here, or Animoto reviewed here are only two of the many presentation formats we have reviewed on TeachersFirst.
Student project ideas: Have students... organize any concepts you study; color-code concepts to show what they understand, wonder, question; map out a story, plotline, or LIFETIME; map out a step-by-step process (life cycle); map a real historical event as a choose-your-own-adventure with alternate endings(?) based on pivotal points; plan a "tour" for a "thought museum."
Use this mapping website as an alternative to a traditional test, quiz, or homework assignment in literature or social studies: have students demonstrate their understanding by completing a graphic organizer about the main points. Be sure that they RENAME it before they start work to an individual name so you know who did it (they could EMAIL it to you!) or have them print their results to turn them in.
Grades4 to 12
To create a new trip, you must register at the site. Registration requires a username, password, and valid email address.
tag(s): maps (298)
In the ClassroomSuggested uses on the Tripline site are to use along with moments in history such as Paul Revere's ride and Lewis and Clark's expedition to demonstrate stops along their path. Other classrooms uses would be for students to create a Tripline map of their summer vacation to use as an enhancement to a regular report, map out your favorite sports team's schedule, historic state sites, and much more.
Registration does require an email address. Tip: rather than using your personal or work email, create a free Gmail account to use for memberships. If you plan to have students register individually, you may want to create your own Gmail account with up to 20 subaccounts for each group of students (by code name or number) within your classes. Here is a blog post that tells how to set up GMail subaccounts to use for any online membership service.
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomUse one of the videos on an interactive whiteboard or projector to deliver a quick lesson on the history of Memorial Day. There are also links to good content on military history, military leaders, and the various physical memorial sites that honor US military veterans.
Grades7 to 12
tag(s): valentines day (13)
In the ClassroomReference the information on this website to use with a lesson on holidays or various history units. Assign speculated theories listed within the text to students and have them work in small groups to expand upon the information. Have them present their information to the class in a jigsaw format. Students could use the Valentine's Day information to compare and contrast with other holidays having similar historical connections such as Easter and May Day. Have cooperative learning groups compare the two holidays using a site such as, Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here).
Grades7 to 12
In the ClassroomUsers must be able to locate files on their computers to upload. Beyond that, a few clicks that follow onscreen instructions will complete the job!
Use this site as transportation to and from school when students are working on powerpoint presentations for class. This tool could be used in any subject or topic area. If Powerpoint isn't available at your school, use this site to create presentations instead of traditional book reports. Use this tool in social studies to have students create presentations about the branches of government, continents, or economics. The possibilities are endless.
Parent permission advised before posting student work created using this tool
Includes Interaction w general public/ public galleries with unmoderated content
Requires registration/log-in (WITH email)
Products can be embedded
Products can be shared by URL
Grades3 to 12
In the ClassroomUse this site on a projector or interactive whiteboard to discuss and informally assess prior knowledge as you study Veterans Day, the effects of war, or people with disabilities. Ask students to discuss a time when they have seen service animals and how they have been used to help someone. Discuss the information on the site and locate the countries where the veterans served on a map to help students understand what it means to go to war. Ask students to choose one slide and write a story based on what they see in the image. If your school is looking for a schoolwide service project, consider raising funds for service dogs.
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomStudents are "listening" to something all the time; usually is plugged into their ears through earbuds. But as skilled as they are at multitasking, can they listen to a first person account of an important historical event? Can they listen to a scholarly lecture? Might they prefer to listen to a book rather than read it? This site might help you and your students explore these issues. It's not so much about the individual topics on this site; it's about teaching students new ways to access information effectively. For those students who are not strong readers this site may be a way of recognizing their learning style as equally important.
Grades4 to 12
In the ClassroomThis site is excellent for research projects or to provide visual context to your curriculum in social studies, world cultures, world history, literature, art, or western heritage classes. Offer this set of timelines as a research source for history, social studies, and literature classes. Show students these timelines on an interactive whiteboard. Or have students research various topics on their own using this fabulous tool. Pique their interest by letting them browse to find out what else happened at the same time as events in the standard history curriculum -- then ask WHY. Challenge cooperative learning groups to create online posters displaying their findings using an online poster creator, such as Padlet (reviewed here).
GradesK to 3
In the ClassroomIntroduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students explore this site independently or in small groups. Make a shortcut to this site on classroom computers and use it as a center. Print the coloring pages for use in your classes. Use the activities and tie in to concepts in class (matching, etc). Share this link on your class website for families to explore together.
Grades5 to 12
tag(s): cross cultural understanding (123)
In the ClassroomTake your students on a virtual trip to Haiti by sharing this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. The site would work well for individual or pairs of students in a lab or on laptops. Have them record information in current event journals. At the end of the game have students prepare a short presentation using PowerPoint or an online tool like 280 Slides reviewed here to share with the class on how their family did.
Grades5 to 12
In the ClassroomMake a shortcut to this site on classroom computers and use it as a center during a unit on ancient Egypt or as an extension when studying Egyptian number systems. Divide students into cooperative learning groups to explore the site. Working in groups, have a class competition to see who can build their pyramid in the shortest amount of time. Afterward have a discussion about the process each group used to build their pyramid and why their process was successful or not. Have students keep a log of their experience, choices, and obstacles to share with the class. Teachers click the "more Egyptians" for additional information on pyramids and monuments.
Grades2 to 12
In the ClassroomHave the students prepare a quick online presentation of their findings, results, summaries etc. Have each student or each group prepare one or two quiz questions to share with the entire class. Be sure help your weaker readers and ESL students by sharing the vocabulary words prior to reading, either on a handout or by projecting on an interactive whiteboard (or projector) and highlighting them in the text as you come to them. Balance your group selection by ensuring each group has strong and weaker students, girls and boys, students from different ethnic groups or nationalities, etc. Use this activity also as a way to review before tests. Have students present their findings in a multimedia presentation. Why not have students create an online book using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here.
Grades3 to 12
In the ClassroomUse the resources on this site to supplement a classroom during a lesson or unit on prominent Jewish holidays such as Rosh Hashanah or Yom Kippur. Use the information on the site to create lessons for your students. Have students use the site to research Jewish holidays or customs and create a report or presentation. Have your students create an interactive online poster using Genial.ly, reviewed here.
Keep in mind that this site does encompass everything about the Jewish faith including marriage, divorce, and sex. For that reason younger children should not be closely monitored on the site.