GradesK to 12
In the ClassroomUse Spezify on an interactive whiteboard or projector as you introduce a new topic in science or social studies or when the class asks "What is ____?" . With very young students or non-readers, use Spezify to help them find information they can understand and to inspire them to try to read some of the short text excerpts alongside the images. Activate students' prior knowledge as they recognize the images and remark, "I didn't know Edison was the one who invented that!" Visually show the "big picture" on any topic. As you teach research skills, try a comparison of Spezify results with Google results for both functionality of the search engine and reputability of the results. NOTE: Preview any search terms you plan to display in class if the terms could possibly bring up inappropriate images. You may need to adjust your terms. Of course your students know what they are supposed to do if something inappropriate comes up when using a search themselves, right? If you have not discussed this, now is the time!
GradesK to 5
If you click on the Student View a spinning wheel will appear. Students can spin to choose a random activity! Many of these activities require Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.
In the ClassroomSave this site in your favorites on your classroom computers. Introduce this site on your projector or interactive whiteboard. If a student finishes early and needs some enrichment or is struggling and needs some extra practice, look here for some interactive help! Share this site on your class website for students to access outside of the classroom.
GradesK to 3
In the ClassroomThis is a great site for the student who always finishes his/her work first...and has all of the answers correct. Demonstrate HOW to use this site using your projector or interactive whiteboard. Set up math learning station using this site. Use this site's variety of levels to differentiate for your students. Share this link on your class website for students to practice addition both in and out of the class.
GradesK to 3
In the ClassroomTreat your students to this "yummy" site. Demonstrate HOW to use this site using your projector or interactive whiteboard. Set up a math learning center using this site. Share this link on your class website for students to practice addition both in and out of the class.
GradesK to 3
In the ClassroomTake your students out to "play in the snow." Demonstrate HOW to use this site using your projector or interactive whiteboard. Set up a math learning center using this site. Share this link on your class website for students to practice addition both in and out of the class.
GradesK to 6
In the ClassroomThis site can easily be differentiated using the specific age ranges provided. Use this site to differentiate for your special education, ESL, or ELL students.
Be sure to visit the Teachers Link for some excellent ideas. All of the activities are perfect for learning stations, individual computers, or on an interactive whiteboard or projection screen. The offerings available are so diverse, that this website could be used throughout several language arts, math, science, art, and music lessons. Feature this website in your class newsletter or on your website so students can practice these educational activities at home.
Grades2 to 12
In the ClassroomUse a Padlet to collaborate in collecting ideas, brainstorming, and more. Use this tool easily in your Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) classroom since all students will be able to access it for free, no matter what device they have. Padlet does not show which work is attributable to which student, so you may want to require that students initial their contributions in order to get credit. If allowing all students to post to the wall or make comments, you may want to discuss internet safety and etiquette and establish specific class rules and consequences. Making the setting private again will prohibit content from later being replaced by classmate "vandalism."
Use a Padlet to collect webquest links and information to share with students. By leaving the wall open to comments, solicit input, discussions, or viewpoints from students. They can even contribute other sources they find. Color code resources to indicate different reading levels or "high challenge" sources for your more able students. Assign a student project where students choose their theme and design a wall around it. For example, have students create a wall about an environmental issue. They can include pictures, audio or video, links, and other information to display. Use as a new format for book reports. Do your students have favorites such as music or sports? Create a wall around these favorites or hobbies. Use a wall for grammar or vocabulary words. Create walls for debates or viewpoints. Post assignments, reminders, or study skills on a wall. Do you use student scribes or reporters? Use the Padlet site to create a wall with the goings-on in class. Embed your walls in a blog, wiki or website. See a similar tool (and more ideas to use either tool) in the TeachersFirst review of Lino here. Decide which one you prefer! Unfortunately, the Padlet embedded viewer is very small but can be scrolled in both directions.
Use Padlet as a class space during snow days and school breaks. Share the link to a teacher-created, public wall where students can share notes about what they did during the snow day or respond to a thought-provoking question.
Encourage creativity and organization by having your gifted students (or anyone doing independent projects) create Padlets to collect ideas, images, quotes, and more in an "idea bin." Require them to share a brainstorming Padlet to show you the ideas they considered before they launch into a project. Have them brainstorm (and later sort/color code) the possibilities for a creative problem solving or "Maker Faire" project. In writing or art classes, use Padlet as a virtual writer's journal or design notebook to collect ideas, images, and even video clips.
Parent permission advised before posting student work created using this tool
Includes Interaction w general public/ public galleries with unmoderated content
Includes social features, such as "friends," comments, ratings by others
Requires registration/log-in (WITH email)
Products can be embedded
Products can be shared by URL
Grades3 to 10
The first thing you need to do is choose your type of graph to create: Line Graph, Venn Diagram 2, or Venn Diagram 3. Then, visit the Tool Box. There you will find tools to enhance your graph: a brush, a tool to make thin white lines, a link to enable you to type text onto your graph, a tool to "grab and select stuff," and a color picker. This site is very simple to use.
The site also includes a glossary, to help you understand WHAT all of the tools are for (it is directly below the graph on the main page). There is an option to SAVE your graph, by clicking submit. If you don't click submit, you will lose your graph. If you want to save the graph, you must include an email address. The site will send you an email with a direct URL to your graph. It also displays on the screen once you upload your data. Here is a sample the TF review team made. Rather than using personal email accounts consider creating a teacher Gmail account and set up subaccounts for up to 20 students to register (by code name or number). 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. Be certain to check your school's Acceptable Use Policy before using this site. This site also requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.
tag(s): charts and graphs (195)
In the ClassroomThis is one cool tool that would be useful with elementary, middle, and high school levels. In the younger grades YOU could create the graphs together on the interactive whiteboard or projector. In the middle and upper grades, have students use the tool to create their own graphs demonstrating their understanding of a math problem. The Venn Diagrams could also be used in a science class (comparing elements), or literature (character analysis), or many other subject areas outside the realm of math.
GradesK to 6
Caution: this site is still in beta, so you may notice some slight changes as it grows. The site does offer you the option to "Join," you can access all activities (at this point) without registering. The site was created in the UK, so some of the pronunciations and spellings may differ than in American English. Also, this site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.
In the ClassroomWhat a great site for those competitive-spirited math junkies as well as for students who may need remediation on particular skill areas. This is an all-around great practice site. Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Set up learning stations for students to try out the activities. If individual computers are available, have students work at their own math or spelling levels. Have students keep a log of activities they complete and how well they do, since you will not be able to monitor a center. List this site on your class website for students to access both in and out of your classroom, to practice both math and language arts.
Grades3 to 12
tag(s): egypt (67)
In the ClassroomBy providing picture clues, have students try to solve names using the Egyptian symbols. If students want to seek the scribe and delve into hieroglyphs a bit further, click on Scribe at the bottom of the page. They will be directed to the University of Pennsylvania Museum website for detailed information regarding the Egyptian culture. Are you looking for a site to use with younger students? Check out Journey to Egypt (reviewed here). Click on the link for Hieroglyphics to learn more.
Use this site as part of a study of different alphabets and coded symbols, even comparing them to mathematical or musical symbols as a means of communicating meaning. Gifted students will enjoy exploring and comparing different symbol systems.
Grades4 to 12
This site includes advertising.
In the ClassroomShare this video with your students on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Have cooperative learning groups research other aspects of economics or business and create their own videos. Share the videos on Teachertube (explained here).
Grades4 to 12
This site includes advertising.
tag(s): money (193)
In the ClassroomShare this video with your students on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Have cooperative learning groups research other aspects of economics and create their own videos. Include this video as you teach about interest in math class, then have students create a video advertisement for a savings program. Share the videos on Teachertube (explained here).
Grades2 to 8
In the ClassroomShare this site on an interactive whiteboard or projector, while students work independently on laptops or other computers. If individual computers aren't available, set this site up as a learning center, after the introduction. In younger grades challenge students to create certain shapes. With older students use the site for more complex instruction, helping students to navigate through basic geometry and geometric shapes. Anything you can do on a real geoboard you can do here without purchasing materials, and students cannot shoot each other with rubber bands!
Grades4 to 10
tag(s): numbers (204)
In the ClassroomYou have several options to use this site with your geometry students. You could print out the "dot paper" and display the question on an interactive whiteboard or projector, while students work independently at their seats and selected students share on the whiteboard (resist the urge to be Vanna White yourself). You could also share this site using the interactive Geoboards. If individual computers are available, you could have students try the 13 questions using their own interactive Geoboards. Have cooperative learning groups create 2-3 additional questions (related to the topic) for the class to try. Share them on your class web site for students to challenge one another.
GradesK to 12
The documents are editable after conversion. Images will not be as "editable" as text. The text comes in within a text box, but can be edited. Be aware that many school email spam filters may block the Zamzar emails because they view them as "spam." If emails do not come through or you cannot download from Zamzar's link, request the converted files be sent to a home email address and bring them to school "on a stick."
Be aware: there are MANY advertisements at this site, so this many not be a site that you want students to explore independently. Also, the site mentions having to register. You do not need to register to use most of the features.
This site includes advertising.
In the ClassroomMark this tool in your favorites for easy access. Teachers should model ethical use of electronic resources (other people's work) for students. Making a "derivative work" from someone else's pdf handout should include a printed credit within the new document, giving credit for the original source, Ex. "Adapted from a handout by xxx available at www.theoriginalhandout.pdf." Such derivative use should only be done when the original copyright permits it, such as using materials that grant permission for classroom use. Be sure to give proper credit for videos and other files you save locally.
One main problem with the site is that you need to enter the email address and wait for the email to download the file. There is a nice pdf conversion site http://www.pdfaid.com where you can convert and download the file instantly. Disclaimer: I am the owner of the website.pdf, , Grades: 0 - 12
GradesK to 5
In the ClassroomThis site is a good one to search for quick and easy ideas to celebrate Mother's Day. Save this site in your class favorites and use this site as a learning center for partners to explore together.
GradesK to 12
In the ClassroomAlthough this site has a TON to explore, one of the best places on this site is the daily writing prompt section (find seasonal prompts at the Seasonal Items link). You can share them on your interactive whiteboard or projector with a picture and fact about the day and a question requiring a written answer. This is a great discussion starter or activating strategy with any grade level and it can already be posted when the kids enter the room or used as a prompt for blogging. Whatever subject area you teach, if you are looking for some new strategies to reach your students, check out this site.
GradesK to 2
Be aware: the bear does make sounds (in particular, a burping sound) that may cause some giggles. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.
In the ClassroomShare this simple site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Set this site up as a learning center for young students to practice counting skills. Provide this link on your class website for at-home practice.
GradesK to 3
tag(s): mothers day (13)
In the ClassroomShare this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. List this link on your class website. Set up a learning center dedicated to Mother's. If you have students in your class who do not live with (or have) a mother, maybe they can focus their project, poem, or craft on another female (or male) role model who has influenced their lives.
GradesK to 12
Each content area has successful resources that you can use.
Content areas include Preparing, Learning, Studying, Learning with Others, Online Learning/Communicating, Classroom Participation, Project Management, Research, Reading Skills, Preparing for Test, Science and Technology, Math, Resources, Vocabulary/Spelling, Writing Styles, Writing Basics, and Taking Tests. There are over 100 individual topics to explore: Time Management, Avoiding Procrastination, Learning with ADHD, Effective Study Habits, Peer Mediation, Problem Based Learning, Netiquette, Public Speaking, Citing Websites, SQ3R, KWL, Overcoming Test Anxiety, Ten Tips for Terrific Test Taking, Prefixes and Root Words, Seven Stages of Writing, and countless others!
There are some basic advertisements at this site. Flash and Acrobat Reader are needed for some of the links and can be obtained here: TeachersFirst Toolbox page.
In the ClassroomThis site is one to save in your favorites! There is so much here, it is hard to know where to begin. The language offerings provide opportunities for ESL and ELL students to learn study skills in their native language. This site could also be used in world languages classes.
Why not highlight a "study skill" each week using your interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students TRY it. Most of the topics provide interactive learning or another assignment to help students practice the skill. Have students work individually or with a partner to explore the "topic of the week." These life skills are so necessary, but hard to fit into the already crammed curriculum. This site does a nice job of integrating the study skills with curriculum content. Have students create their own multimedia projects about study skills using a current unit of study from your class.