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Read, Tell, and Sell: CCSS through student book promotions - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 6
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Promote books beyond traditional book reports and at the same time work toward Common Core Standards in Speaking and Listening. This article includes suggestions, step by step strategies,...more
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Promote books beyond traditional book reports and at the same time work toward Common Core Standards in Speaking and Listening. This article includes suggestions, step by step strategies, resources, and tips--from tech-savvy to low-tech or no tech--so your students can promote books and build CCSS skills as they contribute to their community of readers and writers. Want to know more about implementing Common Core? See the full series of articles, read-alouds, and more here.

tag(s): book reports (35), commoncore (94), listening (91), process writing (42), speaking (24)

In the Classroom

Save this article in your Favorites to have it ready. Use the comprehensive tips and resources to have students create book promotions as your next (traditional or digital) writing activity as part of your usual reading activities. Let this reading and writing activity do double duty to meet speaking and listening standards, too!
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Kickboard for Teachers - Kickboard

Grades
K to 12
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Kickboard for Teachers is an online grade book that includes features to track student behavior, facilitate parent communication, and to identify trends in student responses. It offers...more
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Kickboard for Teachers is an online grade book that includes features to track student behavior, facilitate parent communication, and to identify trends in student responses. It offers the ability to correlate assessments to specific skills or standards including state and Common Core standards. Use features in Kickboard to personalize reward and consequence systems to meet individual needs. View snapshots of individual students showing overall performance on a group of skills as well as comparisons to group performance. Class setup and data input is quick and easy. Information is automatically backed up and saved. View an introductory video before starting to use this site.

tag(s): assessment (100), classroom management (135), data (148)

In the Classroom

Up to three teachers in an individual school may use Kickboard for free. Use Kickboard to collaborate and share data with other teachers for a particular class or group of students. This would be especially helpful for collaborating between learning support and regular classroom teachers when using a behavior plan. Share Kickboard information with parents as part of your ongoing communication process. Use Kickboard to collect and gather information for IEP and other intervention and data collection meetings. Track student behavior for positive reinforcement or discipline purposes. This versatile tool has many possibilities.

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Here There Everywhere- News for Kids - Claudia David Heitler - News for Kids, Inc.

Grades
4 to 10
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Find news features on current events, politics, space, weather, sports, and more. This would be useful in any classroom where a "knowledge of the now" is a focus. At the ...more
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Find news features on current events, politics, space, weather, sports, and more. This would be useful in any classroom where a "knowledge of the now" is a focus. At the time of this review some of the specific topics included granting a wish to a terminally ill young child, remembering JFK 50 years after his assassination, a football game honoring a special needs student, the discovery of new planets, and much more. Subscribe to their newsletter to receive updates on new articles. For an interesting discussion about who writes these news stories, take a look at "About." The site creator used to be a producer for the Today Show!

tag(s): news (261)

In the Classroom

Use this site as a resource for current events. The reading level of the stories is generally upper elementary, but the topics are of interest through high school. These short articles would be great for practice with informational texts. Keep this site as part of a list for students to access, including weaker readers and ESL/ELL students who can use the videos to aid understanding. Have students research whats going on via this news site, and present a small presentation at the beginning of class. Students can either present orally or, for the technologically inclined, create a short video summarizing the same information. Consider using a bookmark site such as Diigo, reviewed here, to share newsworthy items that correlate with your class curriculum.

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Flippity - Flippity.net

Grades
6 to 12
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Easily create flashcards from Google spreadsheet data using Flippity. Simple directions offer clear instruction about downloading the template and entering data terms. Publish data...more
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Easily create flashcards from Google spreadsheet data using Flippity. Simple directions offer clear instruction about downloading the template and entering data terms. Publish data and receive the url for viewing and sharing your flashcard set. Completed sets offer options for viewing either side of cards, moving through the set, and reloading/reshuffling the set. While registration is not required for this tool, you do need a Google account. Flippity also offers several other activities you may find useful such as Quiz Show, Spelling Words, Mad Lib, Badge Tracker, and others.

tag(s): flash cards (45), game based learning (103), quiz (84), quizzes (96), test prep (95), vocabulary (323), vocabulary development (125)

In the Classroom

This is a fantastic tool for vocabulary development in any subject area! Create flashcards for your classes or have them make their own using individual or a whole class Google account. Use them as an introduction to a concept, then again in the practice of the concept, and again as a final review. It is a nice three-for-one deal! Use with science terms or for standardized test preparation. Have students create flashcards and share with each other to quiz themselves within their own groups. Encourage students in upper grades to create their own spreadsheet and flash card sets. Show them how to carefully read through their classroom notes and underline the most important word or words in a sentence. Then have them leave out the most important words for their flashcards. Learning support teachers might want to have small groups create cards together to review before tests. Have students create flash card sets to "test" classmates on what they "teach" in oral reports. Create and collect sets of vocabulary cards for your world language or ESL/ELL classes.

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Delivr - delivr.com

Grades
K to 12
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Delivr combines a URL shortening/tracking service with a QR-Code generator to easily share web-based information such as links to videos or web sites. Copy/paste any url into the bar....more
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Delivr combines a URL shortening/tracking service with a QR-Code generator to easily share web-based information such as links to videos or web sites. Copy/paste any url into the bar. Use the drop-down menu for sources such as YouTube or Flickr; then press enter to shorten the url and share. Share options include Facebook, Twitter, or as a QR code to save in several different formats. Free sign-up offers additional options such as an account dashboard that allows you to manage campaigns, produce reports, and download QR codes. The FREE plan requires email registration and allows 25 "active campaigns" or services for one user.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): qr codes (21)

In the Classroom

Use Delivr to shorten and share any long url. If you have a BYOD or 1:1 classroom with mobile devices, be sure they include free QR reader apps to open the codes you create. Create a QR code that directs to your class site or blog and include it on handouts for Back to School night. Create a QR code scavenger hunt for students, making a webquest or research project more engaging. Add QR codes to documents for students to access a key or information to check their answers to questions. Expand knowledge of a topic by adding a QR code to a site that goes beyond the textbook. Create a data chart accessible via a QR code. Students can easily access the data and manipulate the information. Have students create a book trailer or review and affix a QR code to the outside of the book. (Students may be more apt to read a book that has been reviewed by another student.) Make a display completely interactive with a QR code that describes the assignment, the process, the research, student's reactions and more! Add extra help information to any assignment that asks students to solve problems. Create an online help tutorial accessible via a QR code, and place the code beside a similar problem. Even non-readers can use QR codes that lead to images or videos. Link directly to a Google Map. Place QR code contact information for you and your school on contact cards to give to parents. Attach QR codes to physical objects around the room to provide information about the object. Place the links in a newsletter using QR codes instead of a series of words that need to be typed.

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Comic Creator - Boys' Life

Grades
K to 4
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Create simple cartoons using the Comic Creator. The limited number of characters makes this easy to use for a beginner. Choose from the two main characters, Pee Wee or Pedro. ...more
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Create simple cartoons using the Comic Creator. The limited number of characters makes this easy to use for a beginner. Choose from the two main characters, Pee Wee or Pedro. Add one of the few other characters (all characters are boys). Change the background, add text, or include objects. Choose from a single slide format or a three picture cartoon. Print completed comics using the print button. If you want more character options, you may want to try this simple comic creator, as well.

tag(s): comics and cartoons (74), digital storytelling (144), emotions (35)

In the Classroom

Use comics to show sequencing of events. When studying characterization, create a dialog to show (not tell) about a character. To have options for female characters, you also may want to offer the choice of using this other comic creator. Use the dialog box (bubbles) to explain the sequence of a story, a science concept, or school news! Why not use the comic strips for conflict resolution or other guidance issues (such as bullying). Emotional support and autistic support teachers can work with students to create strips about appropriate interpersonal responses and/or feelings. Sometimes it is easier for students to write it down (or create pictures) than use the actual words. World language and ESL/ELL teachers can assign students to create dialog strips as an alternate to traditional written assessments.

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OK2Ask''®: Be The Best: Professional Resources from TeachersFirst - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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Discover the vast professional resources available at TeachersFirst. Explore the timesaving (and easy to use) tools for differentiating, reading resources, rubrics, timesavers, and...more
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Discover the vast professional resources available at TeachersFirst. Explore the timesaving (and easy to use) tools for differentiating, reading resources, rubrics, timesavers, and more. Browse through "must-know" professional topics such as cyber bullying and copyright. Navigate the treasure-filled professional section of TeachersFirst. This session is for teachers at ALL technology comfort levels.

As a result of this session and through individual follow-up, teachers will: Explore the various online professional tools and articles available at TeachersFirst. Find ways to save time using TeachersFirst for planning lessons. Explore to find materials relevant to your own classroom needs. (Follow-up) Plan and implement a student-centered, curriculum-related use of the resource(s) of choice as part of an upcoming teaching unit. Or plan how to use a professional tool (or article) to improve learning in your own classroom. Applicable NETS-T standards (2008)*: 1b, 2a and b, 3d * The text of these standards is copyrighted. Please read the full text at ISTE's NETS-T page.

tag(s): copyright (47), cyberbullying (43), differentiation (47), rubrics (32)

In the Classroom

Not overly familiar with the FREE professional resources available at TeachersFirst? This is a great introduction. Learn about our tools for differentiating, reading resources, rubrics, timesavers. Find the important professional topics: cyber bullying, copyright, and more. Share the resources page with a friend. Or better yet, view this archived webinar together! Take a look at the resource page full of GREAT ideas! >. Learn more about OK2Ask and upcoming sessions here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Mighty Book - Mighty Book

Grades
K to 3
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Engage young children in this colorful site, packed with songs, interactive books, art and music interactives, and emergent reading activities. Reaching a wide range of grades, this...more
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Engage young children in this colorful site, packed with songs, interactive books, art and music interactives, and emergent reading activities. Reaching a wide range of grades, this site offers over 50 different engaging activities. Visit the stories made by children. The free part of this site includes a great variety of topics: Boston Tea Party, alphabet, making mistakes, metamorphosis, Mars, a variety of popular children's songs, nouns, upper case and lower case, Beatrix Potter, jokes, Bach & Van Gogh, Mona and Beethoven, and much more! Some of the activities are also available in Spanish. There are extensive advertisements, so adults will need to help guide children away from them!
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): alphabet (92), independent reading (128), preK (281), sight words (37), songs (52)

In the Classroom

Introduce Mighty Book on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Use this site for learning as a whole group, learning centers, or individual laptops for reinforcement or enrichment. Since there are extensive ads, you may want to bookmark or create shortcuts directly to the activity you want children to use and avoid having them get "lost" in the many links that take you off the site. Share the songs and discuss the lyrics and what they are teaching. Use this site in art class to introduce famous artists to even the youngest of learners. After listening to the jokes, have students make up their own jokes. Poems with activities offer a kinesthetic approach to poetry. Songs about colors and the days of the week catch your auditory learners. Share this link on your class website for students to explore (and enjoy) both in and out of the classroom.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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One Big Photo - Joao Martins

Grades
6 to 12
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Explore amazing photography from around the world at One Big Photo. Photos are user-submitted and shown via a selection process. They are not for sale. Choose from several different...more
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Explore amazing photography from around the world at One Big Photo. Photos are user-submitted and shown via a selection process. They are not for sale. Choose from several different categories such as animals, black and white, landscape, and people. You can also click to view a random photo. Other search options include browsing top rated images or galleries. Click any image to view the large, high quality image. Note that right-clicking does not offer options to download images. The intent is that you will view images ON this site. Although this site does include a lot of advertisements, it is worth taking a look! This site does have social features such as "likes" and links to external sites.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): photography (160), writing prompts (92)

In the Classroom

Find interesting photographs to use as creative writing prompts and for daily journal writing. Be sure to explore the site on your own before sharing with students who will be distracted by ads as this site is heavy with unfiltered advertising. Project the image full screen to avoid seeing as many distractions. Art and photography teachers will enjoy using this site for sharing interesting examples of design principles on the fly. It is not easy to "find" a photo from another session easily, so open the site and keep it open if you want to keep a certain photo on your screen. Alternatively, open the image to the large view and copy the url for the photo (or mark in Favorites) to revisit it later. Assign students (those who can ignore ads) to "collect" urls for a curated collection of images illustrating a design principle or demonstrating a photographic style they would like to present to the class.

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HapYak Interactive Video - HapYak

Grades
3 to 12
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Take any video to the next level by adding interactive content such as links, quizzes, drawings and more. Add chapters to videos over two minutes in length for viewers to ...more
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Take any video to the next level by adding interactive content such as links, quizzes, drawings and more. Add chapters to videos over two minutes in length for viewers to jump directly to important content. Sign up using your email and a password to begin creating content on any video. Follow the step by step directions for adding your video link and title. Videos can be located on any public site such as YouTube or Vimeo. Once the video is available, use links at the bottom of the screen to draw, add images from a url or your computer, create a quiz and more. When finished, share using the url provided or the embed code. The FREE plan includes 20 public videos and 1 author. All other features are the same (or very similar) to the paid plans.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): quizzes (96), video (254)

In the Classroom

Create videos for your students or have older students create videos to share with others (using a teacher-controlled email registration). Read tips for safely managing email registrations here. Tag key points at which students might have questions. At those points insert tags that reveal clarifying information from another video, a web page, an image, or an audio recording. If using student-created videos or having students create the HapYak video, check your school policy about sharing student work on the Internet. If using with students, be sure to discuss appropriate/inappropriate annotations to make on videos. Also discuss the fact that you are using someone else's video and should give proper credit for it. Embed annotated videos in your class wiki for the class to find them easily. Projects students could make include a cultural tour of a country, a detailed biography, or an author study to play in the library/media center.

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Calendly - calendly.com

Grades
K to 12
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Calendly is an appointment scheduling tool that syncs with your Google Calendar. Sign in with your Google login and set up scheduling pages with your availability preferences. Choose...more
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Calendly is an appointment scheduling tool that syncs with your Google Calendar. Sign in with your Google login and set up scheduling pages with your availability preferences. Choose from several options for length of appointments. Next, describe your event and even add additional questions for invitees if desired. Advanced options allow for making events public, limiting the number of participants, and minimizing schedule notice time. You can add buffer time before and after appointments. Share the link with anyone needing to schedule an appointment with you. They simply visit your calendar to schedule an appointment, and it appears automatically on your calendar. Invitees receive a confirmation screen upon completion of scheduling that includes a link to add the event to their own calendar.

tag(s): calendars (44), organizational skills (122)

In the Classroom

Use Calendly to schedule parent or student conferences that meet mutual scheduling needs. Create events for professional development sessions. Have participants choose a time for attending or presenting at sessions. Share with your school's Parent Teacher Organization as an excellent scheduling tool for any event. Link this up with your Google Calendar and save time, emails, phone calls, and more!

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Flipboard - Flipboard

Grades
3 to 12
3 Favorites 1  Comments
   
Use Flipboard to collect, explore, and share information from many sources, all in a magazine-style format. Flipboard can hold specific articles and images you choose or a dynamic "feed"...more
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Use Flipboard to collect, explore, and share information from many sources, all in a magazine-style format. Flipboard can hold specific articles and images you choose or a dynamic "feed" from a web source such as CNN, a Twitter hashtag, or a favorite blog. Most Flipboard consumers read their magazines on mobile devices, but you can manage and access your magazines from the "web tools" page (the link from this review) on a computer. Create your personal magazine(s) with things you care about: news, staying connected, social networks, and more. Create an account with Flipboard and then connect with LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or YouTube. Click the More panel to browse other categories and add them to your magazines. Drag the Flipboard button to your bookmarks bar or use the Flipboard app on your smartphone or tablet. Find an article you want to add to your collection? Click the + button next to the article to save it or simply click "Flip It" on your computer's browser toolbar to add that web page to your magazine. Edit your magazines online and share with friends and colleagues. View your RSS feeds or follow your news stream in social media with this magazine-style interface. Most of the tutorial videos are hosted on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable. You could always view the videos at home. If you want to share the videos with students, bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube. Flipboard is a device agnostic tool. Load the free app on mobile devices.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): DAT device agnostic tool (198), news (261), social networking (112), video (254)

In the Classroom

Create a class Flipboard account and create magazines for each unit studied through the year. Add information that is useful for student understanding, application of concepts, or materials to be used for projects. Create a magazine of great articles and information to read or search through. Consider creating a Flipboard magazine for student current events or happenings. Use this for reports on various topics such as food issues, diseases, political information, cultures around the world, and more. Make a customized "feed" for more advanced information on a topic for your gifted and advanced students. Students can curate a Flipboard of pictures or videos from the web on a certain topic to share with their classmates. Create a Professional Development Flipboard with other teachers. Teacher-librarians may want to work together with classroom teachers to create magazines of certain content for students to use during research units. Challenge your middle and high school gifted students to curate a magazine for themselves on a topic of individual interest, creating a "PLN" they can use for years. For example, a student interested in rocketry can locate and add blogs from rocket scientists, NASA feeds, and more. Talented writers may want to collect feeds from literary publications and author blogs. They will probably also discover related Flipboards created by others. As gifted students' interests change, they can curate other topical "magazines" to keep learning, even if the topics do not fall within the traditional curriculum. You may find that the personalization of learning is something ALL your students want to do.

Comments

There are amazing collections on this site. Cindi, NC, Grades: 0 - 6

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Hootsuite - Hootsuite Media, Inc.

Grades
9 to 12
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Manage all of your social networks (Twitter, Linkedin, Google+ Pages, Facebook, and more) from one place: HootSuite. This is especially helpful for professional development or for organizing...more
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Manage all of your social networks (Twitter, Linkedin, Google+ Pages, Facebook, and more) from one place: HootSuite. This is especially helpful for professional development or for organizing class learning experiences via Twitter. Learn more about Twitter in this review and TeachersFirst's Twitter for Teachers page. Use Hootsuite to easily and quickly receive updates from followers, direct messages, Facebook updates, and follow hashtag conversations all in one convenient interface. Use this application to follow the multitude of educational chats on Twitter using hashtags. Need help using Hootsuite? Click "Resources" on the site to find help with various issues, as well as video tutorials. Hootsuite is available as an add-in for many browsers as well as an app for mobile devices.

tag(s): DAT device agnostic tool (198), social networking (112), twitter (50)

In the Classroom

Set up Hootsuite by providing information such as your Twitter and Facebook name. Create columns for the various conversations such as "All Friends," "Facebook status updates," "Direct Messages," and more. Create a new Column to follow all the tweets of a particular person or a specific hashtag. Simply enter the username or the hashtag to instantly follow all conversations. Have more than one Twitter account? No problem. Follow all conversations by adding up to five accounts. Click on the picture of each follower for simple commands such as "Reply," "Retweet," "Direct Message," or "Other actions" to manage the user or the Tweet given. Easily follow or unfollow others. Create a column for each hashtag for the best way to keep track of chats on education topics.

Check that Twitter is accessible at school. Twitter is safest used as a whole class activity. If using Twitter with students, be sure you are following the students in order to monitor their use. Set up searches for curriculum-related topics, such as climate change or earthquakes. Use this tool to manage some of the best professional development around. Learn from other like educators, and challenge thinking and learning to greatly impact the lives of your students. Create connections that help you grow as an individual and an educator. Find more ideas in TeachersFirst's Twitter review.

If you teach gifted students, use Hootsuite on classroom computers for them to set up specific searches related to the topics your class is studying. Challenge them to act as your class Twitter curators, checking out related articles and links that will bring more real-world examples to the rest of the class or raise related debates that the gifted student can investigate. Find professionals in the field for your gifted students to ask questions about their science experiments and interests. Be sure to discuss safety and responsible online behavior if you permit students to send tweets on their own. Of course you will be able to "see" what they have sent if they use a class account.

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PollCode - Boardhost.com

Grades
3 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Looking for a way to quickly collect answers or opinions? Use PollCode to quickly create and embed a poll on your website. You can also share it using a simple ...more
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Looking for a way to quickly collect answers or opinions? Use PollCode to quickly create and embed a poll on your website. You can also share it using a simple link. Receive a breakdown of responses. Fill in the question along with up to 30 answer options. Use the code provided to embed the poll on any website. Share the poll also using social media share buttons. Sharing the poll by link allows users to also leave comments. Polls stay online until they have received no responses for 30 days.

tag(s): quiz (84), quizzes (96)

In the Classroom

Share polls on a projector or interactive whiteboard to discuss and informally assess prior knowledge as you start a new unit, asking questions about the material. Discuss in groups why students would choose a particular answer to uncover misconceptions. Use for Daily quiz questions to check student understanding as a means of formative assessment. Use a class account to have student groups alternate to create a new poll for the next day. Place a poll on your teacher web page as a homework inspiration or to ask questions to increase parent involvement. Older students may want to include polls on their student blogs to increase reader involvement. Have students create polls to use at the start of project presentations. Use polls to generate data for math class (graphing), during elections, or for critical thinking activities dealing with the interpretation of statistics. Use "real" data to engage students on issues and current events that matter to them.

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Brainy Box - Russell Tarr

Grades
K to 12
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Create a 3-D animated cube where you choose the content for each of the sides. No membership is required. Your Brainy Box cube is viewable on any device - even ...more
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Create a 3-D animated cube where you choose the content for each of the sides. No membership is required. Your Brainy Box cube is viewable on any device - even iPads and other tablets. Click through the tutorial by clicking the numbers under the cube and learn the details! When you are ready to create your own, click the New button to begin. Edit using standard web tools and click on a different cube face number to continue editing. Save your creation with a password to retrieve later. Be sure to save the url somewhere you can find it! Some of the introductory 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.
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tag(s): creativity (109), images (266), photography (160)

In the Classroom

Create a cube with various aspects of information about curriculum content to be shared with students. Even the non-readers could navigate a teacher-created cube if videos (or graphics) are included instead of words. Use a Brainy Box cube to give directions and examples to a specific project assigned to students. Create a cube about a particular person or event from history. Decide on the parameters for each of the sides of the cube before assigning. Create a cube to include specific information from characters in novels. Create a Brainy box to include related images or words. Students can brainstorm how these images or words are related. Assign a Brainy Box with student's favorite artwork and reasons chosen from their work through the year. Use a Brainy Box as a visual aid for student presentations. Challenge students to create their own Brainy Box on nearly any subject. Some additional ideas shared from Brainy Box: Produce a "Who" cube with an image and five key aspects of a character; Summarize a key topic with two facts, two images, and two videos; and Summarize a key event looking at different times in history. The possibilities here are endless! See more ideas in this review of a similar tool (3D Photo Cube) that creates a cube of still images.

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Cacheopedia - Cacheopedia

Grades
4 to 12
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Interested in geocaching (or want to know what it is?) This wiki offers an encyclopedia of geocaching. Cacheopedia indexes everything about geocaching. Learn the basics of geocaching....more
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Interested in geocaching (or want to know what it is?) This wiki offers an encyclopedia of geocaching. Cacheopedia indexes everything about geocaching. Learn the basics of geocaching. Find vocabulary, guides, and even communities. Use GPS units or GPS-enabled smart phones to get started geocaching.

tag(s): latitude (13), longitude (13), maps (287)

In the Classroom

Incorporate geocaching into geography, math, science, history, English, and physical education curricula. Develop understanding of latitude, longitude, and basic geography. Create lessons (or even better, have students do the creating) to learn about the area in which your students live. Encourage students to focus on places they have not been and include local history. Design a scavenger hunt around the school to move students through various caches and information they should gather or items they should see. Have a resource others would like to see? Read the Contribute section of Cacheopedia to write and submit information that others may find useful. Your students could, for example, create a geocache with a token about local history or biological species and help others learn from them! You might even make the "cached" item a QR code that directs to a wiki page your students create telling all about the local historic site or species found at the cache location. Learn more about QR Codes in this archived OK2Ask recording.

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BookRX - Knight Lab Northwestern University

Grades
K to 12
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BookRX finds and recommends books for you to read based on your Twitter feed. Allow the site access to your Twitter account and enter your handle. In a few seconds, ...more
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BookRX finds and recommends books for you to read based on your Twitter feed. Allow the site access to your Twitter account and enter your handle. In a few seconds, a suggested book list appears based on information found in your Twitter feed! The site finds books based on hashtags used and other users you follow. Book recommendations appear in several categories such as food, business, or science and technology.

tag(s): book lists (128), independent reading (128), professional development (123)

In the Classroom

Use BookRX as a fun way to find book recommendations you may not otherwise know about. In lower grades, this is likely to be a teacher-only tool. Share with older students who actively use Twitter to help them find new reading material. Use with your classroom Twitter account to find books related to curriculum topics your class has been tweeting about or experts you have been following. Teachers at ANY level who have established a Twitter presence can use it to find professional reading materials. Looking for more ways to use Twitter in the classroom? Read more about Twitter at TeachersFirst's Twitter for Teachers page.
 

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Word Counter - Word Counter

Grades
4 to 12
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Word Counter is a powerful, simple tool for anyone who writes. Paste in the text of your own writing (a paper, a blog post, a letter, etc.) and see how ...more
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Word Counter is a powerful, simple tool for anyone who writes. Paste in the text of your own writing (a paper, a blog post, a letter, etc.) and see how many times you repeat a word. Choose to include "small words" (the, it, etc.) in the count or not. Search your writing by roots and choose how many words you want the site to list. Repetition of words is boring for your reader and often shows "lazy" word choice. Try using this program and Big Huge Thesaurus, reviewed here, to spice up your writing. Make revision for word choice one of the steps in your writing process.
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tag(s): process writing (42), word choice (26), writing (359)

In the Classroom

Demonstrate the use of Word Counter on your Interactive Whiteboard. Once the redundant words have appeared on the program, display the text they came from and have students make suggestions for stating the sentences in a different way, or using synonyms. Post a link to Word Counter on your webpage for parents and students to use at home. Use Word Counter for your own writing in newsletters home, emails to parents, graduate work, and notes to administration. Be sure to share Word Counter with your colleagues.

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MakeUseOf Cheat Sheets - makeuseof.com

Grades
K to 12
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MakeUseOf offers a large collection of tip sheets for popular programs such as Gmail, Mac programs, and Windows. Find over 40 help guides. Some of the topics include Safari for ...more
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MakeUseOf offers a large collection of tip sheets for popular programs such as Gmail, Mac programs, and Windows. Find over 40 help guides. Some of the topics include Safari for Mac Keyboard Shortcuts, Shortcuts For Special Characters on Windows, Evernote Search Tips & Tricks, Skype Shortcuts for Mac OSX, YouTube Tips, and several others. View by clicking the thumbnail or use the download link to print in PDF format.
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tag(s): computers (95), search strategies (30)

In the Classroom

Useful both with students or personally, this is a site that you will definitely want to bookmark or save in your favorites. Print the guides for use with classroom computers, in computer labs, and to tape in student notebooks. Create a permanent link to these guides on your class website or blog for students (and parents) to use at home. Encourage students to use these sheets to become "techsperts" at a certain program and to share their expertise during byod activities.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Iris the Dragon - Gayle Grass

Grades
K to 6
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Iris the Dragon offers children's books to educate young children on mental health and wellness. The site has several FREE, downloadable e-books. There are other materials and offerings...more
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Iris the Dragon offers children's books to educate young children on mental health and wellness. The site has several FREE, downloadable e-books. There are other materials and offerings advertised on the site, but no purchase is needed to obtain the free e-Books. Topics include ADHD, Asperger's Syndrome, School Anxiety, Anger, Worry, and more. A few e-books are also available in French. Fill in the simple form with your name, books desired, and how you plan to use the books. (No email address is necessary, but can be provided if you want email updates from the website.) There is no "wait" period. E-books are available for immediate use.
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tag(s): adhd (28), aspergers (6), autism (22), ebooks (42), mental health (26)

In the Classroom

Download books from Iris the Dragon for use in mental health lessons or to address specific classroom concerns. Use books as a read-aloud and display on your interactive whiteboard or projector during class meetings. Print and laminate books for use in guided reading lessons. Share this site on your class website for students (and parents) to read together at home.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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