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Shmoop US History, American History - Shmoop

Grades
9 to 12
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Useful for either teachers or students, Shmoop is a virtual cram session on a variety of topics. In this history section, choose a time period and you get a tabbed ...more
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Useful for either teachers or students, Shmoop is a virtual cram session on a variety of topics. In this history section, choose a time period and you get a tabbed overview of the era including a quick review, a more in-depth coverage, a timeline, important people, fun facts, web links, and a test review. There are featured stories, Hot Topics, and study guides. It's all written in a breezy, accessible style that students will appreciate, but it's not superficial.

tag(s): blues (21), civil war (145), constitution (79), fashion (10), gold rush (19), war of 1812 (14)

In the Classroom

Students will love this site for reviewing and preparing for exams. Share this link on your class website for students to access both in and out of the classroom. Take advantage of the FREE study guides. Why not have cooperative learning groups investigate specific topics relative to your current unit of study and create multimedia presentation. Create podcasts, using a site such as PodOmatic (reviewed here). Have students create a Have students create an annotated image including text boxes and related links using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here. Challenge students to find a photo (legally permitted to be reproduced), and then narrate the photo as if it is a news report about the event or topic. To find Creative Commons images for student projects (with credit, of course), try Compfight, reviewed here. Teachers can also use this site to differentiate between the typical lectures used to teach a US history project. Use the images on this site to create a "picture walk" in your classroom, introducing any one of the topics offered. Select 10-15 of the more powerful and diverse images, hanging them up in different locations around your classroom. Have students rotate around the classroom every 30-45 seconds, jotting down what they observe and infer about each image until the entire class has completed the circuit. After the class is back in their seats, have a class discussion based on what they observed and what this says about the topic.

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in Bflat 2.0 - Darren Solomon from Science for Girls

Grades
3 to 12
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Make music a web 2.0 interactive experience using this "mashup" of musical YouTube videos, all in the key of B Flat. If you can access YouTube videos at school, you ...more
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Make music a web 2.0 interactive experience using this "mashup" of musical YouTube videos, all in the key of B Flat. If you can access YouTube videos at school, you will open the eyes and ears of those who never thought they would even care about music. See twenty different "instruments," both traditional and electronic, playing excerpts YOU combine by starting and controlling the volume on your choice of instruments. They sound great together or in any combination you choose. If you click "More info," you will find out FAQ and more about the project and its creator, including how it was done.

tag(s): music theory (43)

In the Classroom

Test this site to be sure you can open it at school. Then turn up your speakers and open this site on a projector or -- even better -- interactive whiteboard to begin a music class, discuss key signatures, pitch, or instrumentation, and allow students to mix and remix their choice of sounds in harmonious blend. In science class, use the various sounds and an oscilloscope to teach about sound waves and the physical nature of sound. Challenge your musically gifted students to create a very simple version of this musical "machine" by recording and embedding videos of their own in a class music and technology wiki. Upload the videos to a school-friendly site such as SchoolTube reviewed here or TeacherTube reviewed here to avoid filtering issues. Set up a simpler face-to-face option by allowing student "conductors" to "turn on and off" multiple instruments and objects in your music classroom all playing the same pitch.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Automotivator - Zach Beane

Grades
K to 12
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Create your own motivational poster easily and effortlessly. Choose a random picture, one from the Internet, or one chosen from your computer. Choose colors to border the picture and...more
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Create your own motivational poster easily and effortlessly. Choose a random picture, one from the Internet, or one chosen from your computer. Choose colors to border the picture and the type of text to be used. Enter your text and preview the result. Once complete, save to Flickr, your computer, or print using a separate site. Remember you can use a saved image in PowerPoint shows and on a class wiki, as well.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): images (266), photography (160), posters (36)

In the Classroom

You need to know how to browse and upload a file from your computer or find the URL of an image already on the web (one you can legally use, of course!).

Make sure students are aware of copyright laws. Use this site to encourage proper use of photographs that students have the authorization to use. Model including appropriate photo credits on the posters.

Younger students can use this tool together as a whole-class activity or simply enjoy the posters their teacher creates. Have students create a picture about what has been studied with a caption of what has been learned. For example, create posters about predators and prey or classifications of animals. Students can create a poster of a study skill or learning activity that helps them learn. Create a caption that explains how the student learns the best. Every subject area can use this resource to create interesting presentation posters for display or as springboards to talk about what was learned. For example, in Biology, students could create a poster about a cell part with a clever caption about the importance of the job. In Literature or History, students can create posters about the perspectives of others in the story or at that time of history. Rather than a traditional research project. Have cooperative learning groups use this site to show their knowledge in any subject area. Ask students to apply concepts such as constitutional rights by illustrating them in poster images with captions. Teachers can create bulletin board images, as well. Have a classroom motivation poster competition to start off the school year! Share the winners on your class wiki or in a PowerPoint presentation at back to school night/open house. As special occasions approach, have students bring in or take a digital picture they can make into a poster as a family gift with their own inspirational saying.

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Sporcle - Sporcle, Inc.

Grades
2 to 12
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Try these interactives, available in a variety of subjects: Geography, History, Language, Literature, Movies, Music, Religion, Science, and others. Sporcle tests memorized knowledge...more
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Try these interactives, available in a variety of subjects: Geography, History, Language, Literature, Movies, Music, Religion, Science, and others. Sporcle tests memorized knowledge against a timer. Accessing the comments below can lead to spoilers that reveal answers. Become stumped during a game? Click on "Give up" to end the game and reveal the rest of the answers. Teachers should preview and provide the DIRECT link to the games or section (such as geography) they wish students to use. The "popular" listings and some advertising on this site may include questionable content for classrooms. . These games would be great study tools for students, both in and out of the classroom!

tag(s): elements (36), literature (275), maps (287), phonics (75), presidents (131), vowels (13)

In the Classroom

Share specific activities on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Teachers should provide the address URL of the actual game to prevent students from accessing other games (or advertisements that you may wish to avoid). Use these interactives as individual activities or in groups to learn a variety of data. For example, play "Element by Symbol" to review the names of the elements of the periodic table by knowing the names of the symbols. This game entertained this science teacher editor and her chemistry student son for fifteen minutes. Enjoy other science games or in subjects such as Geography, History, or Literature. Use the unknown answers that are shown at the end to create study cards in order to improve scores the next time.

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Equal Exchange's Fair Trade Curriculum & Educational Resources - Equal Exchange

Grades
4 to 10
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This collection of pdf lesson plans centers around 3 main topics: how we get our food, what the Fair Trade movement is doing for farmers and eaters, and what coops ...more
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This collection of pdf lesson plans centers around 3 main topics: how we get our food, what the Fair Trade movement is doing for farmers and eaters, and what coops are. The complete curriculum is downloadable and printable, and the daily lessons at this site offer support and extra activities. One lesson, translated for Spanish teachers, offers students an activity so they can understand "What's Fair?" One of the most exciting parts of the website is a collection of videos of Dominican children talking in Spanish about cocoa production! The lesson plans include a variety of activities for students and include projects in math, writing, civics, research, geography, art, music, and international culture.

tag(s): air (163)

In the Classroom

Use these lessons as part of a unit in social studies, Family and Consumer Science, or several other subjects. Take your students on a visit to a local food coop or invite one of their members to speak to your class live or via Skype (explained here.). Have students do a project comparing coop grocery sales with the more commercial establishments. Maybe even have student groups create an online Venn Diagram comparing the two using a site such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here). If you have international students from the Dominican Republic or other cocoa producing countries, share this site with them and allow them to compare what the students say on the video to their own experiences. Create your own videotaped interviews with food growers or their families. Share the videos using a tool such as Teachers.TV reviewed here.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Visual Complexity - Manuel Lima

Grades
6 to 12
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View interesting graphics of data that students will find fascinating. Search visuals in subjects such as Art, Biology, Food Webs, Music, and more. Each visualization has a project...more
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View interesting graphics of data that students will find fascinating. Search visuals in subjects such as Art, Biology, Food Webs, Music, and more. Each visualization has a project description, link, and other information. Caution students that ads appear on pages and these should be avoided.

tag(s): data (148), infographics (42), maps (287), visualizations (14)

In the Classroom

Share the graphics on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Use data visualizations to ask questions about interactions among the parts shown. For example, use any of the food chain visualizations to look at the interactions in the chains and identify roles of organisms. Ask students to use the whiteboard tools to explain how the visual "shows" the underlying information. Be prepared for less visual students to struggle while more visual students thrive using such a tool. Share the interesting map graphics in geography class. Use this at the beginning of a discussion and identify the organisms in the chain to uncover the relationships. Use the graphics for creative writing projects (displaying the graphic on a whiteboard while students react in writing). Ask your gifted students to choose a graphic they particularly enjoy as an inspiration to create one of their own.

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Brainflips - Brainflips, Inc.

Grades
K to 12
7 Favorites 0  Comments
   
Use this free web site to create flashcards for teacher or individual student use. There is also a link to "Study Flashcards" that are already ready to go. There are ...more
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Use this free web site to create flashcards for teacher or individual student use. There is also a link to "Study Flashcards" that are already ready to go. There are literally HUNDREDS of ready to go flashcard packets: presidents, addition, algebra, music, and more.

If you are creating your own, you can add images, video, or audio. Study flashcards online or share with others in created study groups. Use flashcards to learn new information (question and answer are side by side,) study (shows the question and then the answer,) or quiz themselves by entering answers. Create a game with the flashcards by using a timer and score board on the site. Share flashcard sets with others by sending a URL address or create study groups to share. View public flashcards created by others by using their search feature.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): flash cards (45), presidents (131), word study (80)

In the Classroom

You can access the already created flashcards without any account, email, or age requirements. However, if you wish to create flashcards, an email and birth date is required to create an account. Users must be 13 years of age or older.

Using Brainflips: Use the Deck panel to enter flashcard deck title and other basic information. Use the Card panel to add, edit, and change the order of the flashcards in the deck. Create text or multiple choice answers for each flashcard and even enter alternative answers. Click "Insert" above the question field to add images, audio, and video to flashcards.

Safety/Security: Since an email and birth date are required, consider creating a class account for teacher use or for groups of students to use. Create teacher flashcards for class use by creating card decks and providing the URL for students to use. You may want to send students to the flashcards via a direct link to the deck.

Facts, spelling words, vocabulary, definitions, foreign language, root words, historical names --- all can easily be typed into this flashcard format for any subject. Plan a system of tags for sets on related material so they can be grouped. For example: tag all geography terms "geography" and all words from the same science chapter using the chapter number or topic. You can use multiple tags, too! In the computer lab, using a projector or interactive whiteboard, walk your students through making their own sets of flashcards or using teacher created flashcards for student and group use. Students or parents can then access their electronic cards at home or anywhere with a specific URL that can be placed on any teacher blog or website. No email address is needed to use the cards, only to create the cards. Include the link to your sets on your web page for students to study before tests. Collaborate with other teachers to create useful sets for all to use. Rotate responsibility each marking period among student groups in your class to create a set for each chapter/unit/week for the rest of the class to use as review. Give a special award (or bonus points) for the most creative, complete set that marking period. Learning support teachers may want to work together with small student groups to create verbal and visual card sets to accompany the chapters they are studying. Involve the students in the process so they can reinforce new content as they create their own "study materials" with color coding, images, and more.

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Free Music Archive - WFMU

Grades
5 to 12
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This site provides a clearing house for legal, copyright-safe, free music available for download and podcast use. Students looking for pod-safe audio, music remixes, and background...more
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This site provides a clearing house for legal, copyright-safe, free music available for download and podcast use. Students looking for pod-safe audio, music remixes, and background music will be relieved to find this marvelous library of recordings. Students or teachers do not need to join to listen and/or download the MP3 files, but they can join if they'd like to submit their own legal files. We recommend that teachers be the only ones to upload music (with parent permission if you are sharing music performed or written by students). Students who have serious musical ambitions and repertoire may want to join at home.

NOTE: Music on this site is submitted by the general musical public and may include lyrics inappropriate for school. The "Hip Hop" genre includes some inappropriate offerings, so teachers will want to decide the best way to handle use of this site by students. Each genre has its own URL, so it is possible to make only certain areas available. The "classical," "jazz" and other instrumental areas are safer. Depending on the maturity and trustworthiness of students, teachers may want to directly supervise use of this site.

Listeners can find their favorite music by browsing through the many genre categories or trying some of the daily featured artists.Besides music files, there are artist and album profiles, and listeners can star favorites.

tag(s): air (163)

In the Classroom

Students can use files from this site when preparing multimedia class presentations that require music or background sounds. Use this site when preparing lessons on plagiarism, copyright, and the open source software concept. If your students are mature enough, share the link to this site via your class web page (with a disclaimer about possibly inappropriate lyrics). Music teachers with talented composer/performer students may want to share the site as a potential place for students to share their work (with parent permission).

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All my faves - All my faves

Grades
4 to 12
3 Favorites 0  Comments
Not sure what sites exist for your topic? Start here and find sites listed by icon for Art, Encyclopedia, History, Languages, Science, Writing skills, Music, and numerous other topics....more
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Not sure what sites exist for your topic? Start here and find sites listed by icon for Art, Encyclopedia, History, Languages, Science, Writing skills, Music, and numerous other topics. Whether you are searching for research information, enrichment, or tutorials - check out this site. Notice that TeachersFirst is among the "faves" for teaching!

tag(s): dictionaries (56), literature (275)

In the Classroom

Why search for these sites, when the links can all be found in one place? Use this site in combination with TeachersFirst's rich reviews. Students can use these links as a springboard to research and projects. Be sure to save this site in your personal favorites! There is a lot to explore. List this site on your class website and/or wiki for students to access both in and out of the classroom.

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Solar Symphony Game: Sounds of the Solar System - Discovery Channel

Grades
3 to 12
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This visually exciting site offers both background information on the planets and a unique way for students to remember the order of the planets. To play the game, students hit ...more
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This visually exciting site offers both background information on the planets and a unique way for students to remember the order of the planets. To play the game, students hit the letter key that corresponds to the beginning letter of the planet name whenever the planet, rotating around the sun, hits the "hot zone." The music, flashing lights, planetary movement, and other effects make this activity extremely engaging. Students will love the excitement of this game so much they will not even know they are learning something! This site is up to date (Pluto is not included). Gustav Holst's famous composition, The Planets serves as the musical accompaniment! The site has some minor advertisements.

tag(s): planets (123), solar system (119)

In the Classroom

Share HOW to use this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students try out the site on individual computers. Make sure you provide headsets! Be sure to list this site on your class website, blog, or wiki for students to use as a review for their study of planet names, solar system planet order, and speed of rotation. Music teachers can use this site as an example of musical description as students explore the planets. Be sure to turn up the speakers!
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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BusSongs.com - Keith Mander

Grades
K to 12
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Nursery rhymes and other children's songs have been passed down through the centuries carrying various messages within them. BusSongs.com offers the lyrics and downloadable music...more
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Nursery rhymes and other children's songs have been passed down through the centuries carrying various messages within them. BusSongs.com offers the lyrics and downloadable music for over 2,000 nursery rhymes and children's songs. The songs are arranged by genre or easily searched for by title. The list contains songs for such categories as camp fire tunes, traditional and multicultural songs, holiday songs, learning songs, and much more. Don't forget to turn up your speakers!

tag(s): lyrics (20), nursery rhymes (18), rhymes (33), songs (52)

In the Classroom

Use these silly songs in primary grades for those early readers who benefit greatly from rhyme time. For the elementary level, these songs would be helpful when introducing poetry and alliteration. Teach the historical, political and cultural connections that go hand-in-hand with many of these tunes and rhymes. Middle school students will be quite surprised with some of the hidden meanings of the songs such as Ring-Around-The-Rosy. For fun, choose a couple of tunes to sing as a group during the long bus ride to a class fieldtrip location! Have cooperative learning groups explore songs and create a video explaining (and singing) the songs. Or have them write and video record their own lyrics about a historic event or science concept, accompanied by the audio recording of the tune (available for some songs). Have students share the videos using a tool such as SchoolTube reviewed here.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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The Fun Works - Educational Development Services, Inc.

Grades
6 to 12
0 Favorites 1  Comments
 
Learn about careers that YOU might like. Answer the quiz to uncover possible interests for future careers. You can choose categories such as Music or Sports to view possible careers...more
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Learn about careers that YOU might like. Answer the quiz to uncover possible interests for future careers. You can choose categories such as Music or Sports to view possible careers that many you might not think about. Click on Teachers and Instructors to view Lesson Plans and other activities, Resources, or Career Counseling.

tag(s): careers (132), design (83), sports (97)

In the Classroom

Introduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students explore this site independently. Many students are not aware of careers associated with Math, art, music, technology, and Science. Create a greater awareness through use of the quiz and lesson plans/activities. Interest in careers may create a spark of interest in topics by your students.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

Comments

What a neat and helpful site! Lee, , Grades: 0 - 12

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Diffen - Diffen

Grades
2 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
Do you sometimes just want to compare two things and not need a lengthy explanation of either? Diffen offers the simple goal of entering two terms and instantly receiving the ...more
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Do you sometimes just want to compare two things and not need a lengthy explanation of either? Diffen offers the simple goal of entering two terms and instantly receiving the similarities and differences in a table format. View simple definitions under the information table. Need more information? Wikipedia style entries of information area also available on the page. There is a Top 5 list. At the time of this review, the Top 5 included "Gross vs. Net," "Affected vs. Effected," "Meiosis vs. Mitosis," "DNA vs. RNA," and "Fruit vs. Vegetable. While not ALL topics are included, the variety is impressive. You can add your own comparison of terms to the list. You may want to discuss with your class the fact that the information here is only as reliable as the people who submitted it, and ask them whether they agree with the comparisons you find here. NOTE: If you explore some of the ready-mades or requested topics, there are some topics "compared" that are not school oriented, such as comparisons of popular television characters. Preview before turning students loose or simply direct them to a specific "diffen."

tag(s): vocabulary (323)

In the Classroom

The options are endless. Search the differences between two types of soils, mitosis and meiosis, presidents or those running for office, of geometric figures, artists or musicians, places to visit. As a way to build higher order thinking skills, this site is ideal, since comparison of attributes requires analysis.

Try creating some lists of your own as a class after using the ready-made ones here. This activity would be easy to do on an interactive whiteboard, with students hand writing the characteristics and dragging them into Similarities and Differences columns before entering them into Diffen. This site could be used in nearly every subject area. Share this site on your class blog or website, for students to access both in and out of the classroom. This is definitely one to save in your favorites.

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This I Believe, Inc. - Jay Allison, NPR, et. al.

Grades
7 to 12
6 Favorites 0  Comments
 
This site offers essay-writing tips, podcasts, and more. Useful across a wide array of humanities topics, including English, social studies, art, music, religion, and speech, this site...more
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This site offers essay-writing tips, podcasts, and more. Useful across a wide array of humanities topics, including English, social studies, art, music, religion, and speech, this site is an inspiration to students and can serve as an essay starter, a discussion starter, or contemporary information about politics, economics, and the world. On its home page it states that this is "an international project engaging people in writing, sharing, and discussing the core values that guide their daily lives." There are essays from the 1950's when the first incarnation of this idea was heard on the radio from famed journalist Edward R. Murrow. There are essays from those who are famous and those you never heard of. All of the essays are short--usually no more than 400 words. You can hear some of them as they were first broadcast on NPR, and there is a general podcast you can play which defines the site. Anyone can submit their own "This I Believe" essay as long as it follows the guidelines given, and they include essay-writing tips and advanced essay searches to assist anyone interested. The site includes special features which deal with specific topics and there are ideas for educators, students, and community leaders. The printable curricula require Adobe Acrobat. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): 1950s (12), writing (359)

In the Classroom

Searching the "For Educators" page gives you a wide variety of ideas for using this site and these essays. Since students enjoy using first person point of view in their writing, this might be an inspiration for some. You can use some of these essays as conversation starters on topics you are studying in class. (Example: Penn Jillette wrote his essay stating that he believes there is no god. This could be related to many books studied, such as 1984 or Brave New World.) Have students write their essays as blog entries or record them as podcasts using a tool such as Podomatic, reviewed here, or as an illustrated essay using ThingLink, reviewed here. Spanish teachers will want to explore the options to listen to or write essays in Spanish, as well.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Free Metronome Online - BestMetronome.com

Grades
3 to 12
0 Favorites 0  Comments
 
This site offers three useful and FREE online metronomes. Choose the one you want to use based on how many bpm (beats per minute), aesthetic look, and other features. Some ...more
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This site offers three useful and FREE online metronomes. Choose the one you want to use based on how many bpm (beats per minute), aesthetic look, and other features. Some of the online metronomes require Flash, others require Java. You can get either from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): rhythm (20)

In the Classroom

What a great way to get the reluctant musician to practice by including his/her computer! This site is especially useful for music teachers and band directors. Introduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Turn up the volume, and have students play along. Provide this link on your class website for students to use for at-home practice.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Mother's Day - Myvocabulary.com

Grades
2 to 10
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As part of their extensive site for vocabulary, roots, and more, MyVocabulary.com has added a themed area for Mother's Day. Find interactive vocabulary activities using Mother's Day...more
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As part of their extensive site for vocabulary, roots, and more, MyVocabulary.com has added a themed area for Mother's Day. Find interactive vocabulary activities using Mother's Day vocabulary words. You will also find printable crosswords, fill in the blanks and more, all using the same theme words. This and other "themes" available on the site will make vocabulary development fun.

tag(s): mothers day (13), vocabulary (323)

In the Classroom

Share the puzzles on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students work with a partner to try out the puzzles on their own. Have students (or groups) create their own word puzzles to share as a class challenge as a student-run interactive whiteboard activity or share them on a class wiki.

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The Teachers' Corner - The Teachers' Corner

Grades
K to 12
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This is a great site to mine for quick lesson plans, ideas on thematic units, or simply daily writing prompts. There are detailed lesson plans available for math, arts and ...more
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This is a great site to mine for quick lesson plans, ideas on thematic units, or simply daily writing prompts. There are detailed lesson plans available for math, arts and crafts, nutrition, health, music, math, reading, physical education, technology, writing, science, and social studies. Visit the Seasonal Items link to find even MORE resources related to Read Across America, 100th Day ideas, Daily seasonal writing prompts, and much more! Many of the links will take you to other sites, but the onsite printable worksheets and calendars make it worth a visit. Note: the site is laden with advertising, something TeachersFirst users may not appreciate! This site requires Adobe Acrobat. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): fractions (239), nutrition (154), parts of speech (68), phonics (75), speech (92), themes (12), writing (359)

In the Classroom

Although 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.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Valentine's Day - Myvocabulary.com

Grades
4 to 12
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This Valentine's Day site is "full of heart." There are interactive word puzzles, a wordbank of related vocabulary terms, reference information about kisses and more, and a TON of classroom...more
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This Valentine's Day site is "full of heart." There are interactive word puzzles, a wordbank of related vocabulary terms, reference information about kisses and more, and a TON of classroom ideas. The puzzles are printable.

tag(s): holidays (147), valentines day (14)

In the Classroom

Use this site to reinforce and support vocabulary as you study Valentine's Day. Share the word puzzles on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students create their own word activities from the same vocabulary list, such as matching or ranking challenges for their peers to try on the interactive whiteboard.

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We Didn't Start the Fire - Ye Li

Grades
6 to 12
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Use music to teach history! (Allow plenty of time for the video to load.) If you have occasion to teach the Billy Joel song "We Didn't Start the Fire," this ...more
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Use music to teach history! (Allow plenty of time for the video to load.) If you have occasion to teach the Billy Joel song "We Didn't Start the Fire," this is a great site to use with students. This site would be useful in any class studying the twentieth century. It shows the lyrics (as well as plays the song) while flashing the appropriate pictures to go with the lyrics of the past 50 years. There is a full screen option. There are play and pause buttons. You may need to disable your pop-up blocker to view this video. The first 20-seconds of this video list the creator and a reference list. One thing worth mentioning: the video creator mentions using Google image search for free images but neglects to mention that many are copyrighted and are likely being used illegally in such broad distribution (not "fair use") unless he requested permission. You could have quite a class discussion (debate) on ethical use of electronic resources and whether the concept of copyright should be revisited, too!

tag(s): decades (14), lyrics (20)

In the Classroom

Since the site is so specific to the relevant lyrics, it's fun to have students see exactly what it is being visualized. Also, since the lyrics go fast, it is sometimes difficult to make out all the references, so this is helpful for that reason. This is a great conversation starter with high school students. Share this site on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Watch the entire video and then play it again and pause the video on topics that relate to your current units of study. Use this site to find research topics for individual students or cooperative learning groups. Have the groups create multi-media presentations about their research topics. How about creating their own videos and sharing them using Teachertube, reviewed here. Or have students find a picture sharing their research topic and narrate their picture using UtellStory, reviewed here. Other options include creating a wiki, blog, or PowerPoint.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Blues Journey - Kennedy Center

Grades
9 to 12
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If you are looking for an interactive site that combines music with theatre and culture, this is a good one. Incorporating the "page to the stage" idea, the site allows ...more
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If you are looking for an interactive site that combines music with theatre and culture, this is a good one. Incorporating the "page to the stage" idea, the site allows students to read about the main character and background and then listen to the blues with an introduction by Scot Reese, the director of the play. Students can see clips of the actual play, too. Another section deals with the music and includes a history and a walkthrough to the present. Don't miss the interactive map! This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): blues (21), chicago (5), jazz (15), louisiana (11), mississippi (6)

In the Classroom

Students will love listening to the clips as well as watching the play excerpts. Share the clips on your interactive whiteboard or projector. The site invites them to try the blues themselves, and this is a good class or small group exercise. Use this site in music or U.S. history classes. Have students write a fictitious blog from the viewpoint of one of the music composers: what were they thinking? What was their life like? In music class, have students compose their own "Blues." Video the songs and share them on using TeacherTube (explained here). Gifted students, especially those with an interest in music, could use this site as a springboard for their own compositions.
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