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Dotstorming - Gareth Marland

Grades
2 to 12
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Create an online bulletin board (much like Padlet, reviewed here, or Lino, reviewed here) for brainstorming and...more
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Create an online bulletin board (much like Padlet, reviewed here, or Lino, reviewed here) for brainstorming and VOTING on any topic. The voting is what makes this tool different. Create an account. There is no waiting for email approval. Add a board, title, select how many votes the participants will have (up to 10), and start adding posts with text, images, and video. Add images and video via URL or upload from your computer. When participants join, they give their name. Participants can add posts. Names of participants using the board appear below the chat box. Participants name's appear when they make a comment in the chat. However, comments on posts don't have the participant name. Once the board is complete, the creator can finalize the board so no new ideas can be posted, but the voting feature is still open.

tag(s): bulletin boards (16), gamification (65), images (266)

In the Classroom

Share your board with a projector or interactive whiteboard. Put the URL link on your website for students to access. If you don't want to share the link that way, then use a tool such as Google URL Shortener, reviewed here, for students to type in (and reduce input mistakes). You may want to think about students using only their first name or their code to participate. Dotstorming does not show which posts belong to which student, so you may want to require that students identify their post and comment by putting their initials, their first name, or their code on their contributions to get credit. If you plan to allow 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.

Use Dotstorming to collect WebQuest links and information to share with students. Assign a student project. For example, have students create a board about an environmental issue. They can include pictures, 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 board around these favorites or hobbies. Use a wall for grammar or vocabulary words. Create walls for debates or viewpoints. The voting is perfect for that idea! Post assignments, reminders, or study skills on a board. Do you use student scribes or reporters? Use Dotstorming to create a board with class news and updates.

Use Dotstorming as an "idea bin" where students can collect ideas, images, quotes, and more for a project. Require them to share a brainstorming Dotstorming board to show you the ideas they considered before they launch into a project. Have them brainstorm (and rank by votes) the possibilities for a creative problem solving or a "Maker Faire" project. In writing or art classes, use Dotstorming as a virtual writer's journal or design notebook to collect ideas, images, and even video clips.

Use Dotstorming as your virtual word wall for vocabulary development. Have students submit and share questions or comments about assignments and tasks they are working on.

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Brain Doodles - Thomas Michaud

Grades
5 to 12
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Learn more about taking visual notes at Brain Doodles. Find lesson plans, examples, and videos to help improve your memory; do this with doodles and using the senses of sight, ...more
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Learn more about taking visual notes at Brain Doodles. Find lesson plans, examples, and videos to help improve your memory; do this with doodles and using the senses of sight, hearing, and touch. This site is actually more than a learn to doodle site. It's more like drawing lessons to help you think. Find lessons about using letters and numbers for images, drawing stick figures, faces and emotions, memory techniques, problem-solving, and how to listen effectively (so important!). There are several videos per lesson. Roll your cursor over the lesson boxes to see titles of videos in a pop-up box. Download the complete lessons in PDF format. If you're not a doodler, maybe you should be! In an article published in "Applied Cognitive Psychology" Jackie Andrade, a professor at the University of Plymouth, stated doodlers find it easier to recall dull information (29 percent more) than non-doodlers.

tag(s): critical thinking (108), drawing (78), listening (91), note taking (32), organizational skills (122), problem solving (272)

In the Classroom

Introduce this tool on an interactive whiteboard or projector, explaining some of the research behind doodling, memory techniques, and listening. Students love to draw so focus their attention on drawing to learn by setting up a station/center for students to rotate through during any other stations/centers you might have for math, science, history, writing, and more. If you don't use stations, you may want to include a short lesson as an opener or closer each day. Students could finish the day's lesson at home by putting a link to Brain Doodles on your class website for students and parents to access. Now that's homework your students will be motivated to learn!
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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OmniLibros - Carthage College Center for Children's Literature

Grades
K to 12
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Find recently published (since 2010) English-language children's literature that promotes global understanding through this annotated bibliography. Choose the Indices tab to search...more
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Find recently published (since 2010) English-language children's literature that promotes global understanding through this annotated bibliography. Choose the Indices tab to search by title or grade level. Narrow the search using the keyword search tool. Be sure to check out the Book Map, and find books by country. Click on the marker on the country to view and go to those resources.

tag(s): book lists (128), cross cultural understanding (115), literacy (103), maps (287)

In the Classroom

This site is perfect for finding reading material with settings from all over the world. Encourage students to choose a place that interests them, and then find books set in that location. Use this tool as an anticipatory set or "activator" to introduce a unit or lesson on a projector or interactive whiteboard about setting or geography. Be sure to share a link to this tool on your class website or blog for students to use at home.

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Outwhiz - Andrew Kwan and Michael Luk

Grades
K to 8
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Let Outwhiz replace your tired worksheets! Practice math and English with over 200 topics and hundreds of questions per topic. Earn points, move up levels, and earn badges. Sign up...more
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Let Outwhiz replace your tired worksheets! Practice math and English with over 200 topics and hundreds of questions per topic. Earn points, move up levels, and earn badges. Sign up with email. At the time of this review, the math levels are for grades K-8, and the English levels are 1-6, with the promise of grades 7-12 coming soon. Outwhiz, in a nutshell, is adaptive learning, analytics for parents and teachers, gamification, and includes a real-life rewards store all for FREE!
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): classroom management (135), critical thinking (108), DAT device agnostic tool (198), differentiation (47), game based learning (103), gamification (65), grammar (216), problem solving (272), sentences (52)

In the Classroom

The gamification of the material on Outwhiz is sure to catch your student's interest! Sign up using your email and create a class. Give students the URL and class code to join. At the end of an introduction of a concept, use this site for specific language arts or math practice. Use Outwhiz for homework, review, and reinforcement of any math or language arts concept. Use this site to differentiate for students of all levels. Create a link to Outwhiz on classroom computers to use as math and language arts centers/stations. Share this site with parents through your classroom website or newsletter as a resource for math and language practice at home. Share this site as a way to review before tests. ESL/ELL and resource teachers will find Outwhiz to be extremely helpful for reinforcing language and math concepts.

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Ocenaudio - ocenaudio

Grades
K to 12
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Ocenaudio is easy to use software for editing audio. Download the software to any major operating system such as Windows, Mac, or Linux. Use prompts to navigate the software using ...more
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Ocenaudio is easy to use software for editing audio. Download the software to any major operating system such as Windows, Mac, or Linux. Use prompts to navigate the software using a large variety of audio files. Trim, copy, and paste audio or choose from an assortment of effects. When finished, save the file in the format of your choice. Be sure to see the features link on the site for complete information on the capabilities of the software.

tag(s): editing (61), sound (101)

In the Classroom

Use Ocenaudio in early grades to promote literacy by recording your students and creating an audio portfolio record of their reading. Use this tool with ESL/ELL students to practice fluency and hear themselves speak. Use Ocenaudio to record parents, principals, lunch ladies, librarians, relatives, and bus drivers all telling a favorite class story. During writing time, allow students freedom from the pencil to express their true creative voices. Also, dabble into digital storytelling to create a lesson in adding voice, emotion, and characterization. Record audio interviews at local nursing homes, fire stations, or museums to recollect times such as wars, the Great Depression, Civil Rights Movements, or as a primary source during memorable events. Record world language conversations as a student project. Make music class or the school band a gold recording!

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Doodle.ly - Darren Paul and Evan Vogel

Grades
K to 12
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Doodle.ly is a quick and easy to use drawing tool. Click Doodle Now in the upper right corner to begin drawing. Use tools located at the bottom of the screen ...more
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Doodle.ly is a quick and easy to use drawing tool. Click Doodle Now in the upper right corner to begin drawing. Use tools located at the bottom of the screen to draw with pencil, crayon, marker, and more. Change colors by clicking the color bar. When finished, click Publish to save your drawing with options to share on Twitter or Facebook. Doodle.ly works on the web and iOS7 (at the time of this review). Doodle.ly automatically loads popular drawings when loading the home page, be sure to check for inappropriate content before sharing with students.

tag(s): colors (79), drawing (78), painting (66)

In the Classroom

If you are fortunate enough to have computers or iPads in the classroom, this application will work well for collaborative illustrations. Have each student add a different part of a story for retelling or summarizing main events while others watch and share additional information. Have students create simple math problems while another student solves. Sketch out plans for visual projects, brainstorm freehand, or even create collaborative diagrams to accompany lab reports.

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Keith Hughes Teaching Stuff YouTube Playlist - Keith Hughes

Grades
K to 12
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Keith Hughes' playlist includes 27 videos geared toward new teachers containing practical advice and tips in an entertaining way. Titles include 5 Ways For Teachers to Chillax Students...more
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Keith Hughes' playlist includes 27 videos geared toward new teachers containing practical advice and tips in an entertaining way. Titles include 5 Ways For Teachers to Chillax Students on Test Day, Teaching Advice for Dummies, and The Art of the Lecture. Most videos run ten minutes or less making them easy to watch and share. 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.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): back to school (58), mentoring (12), professional development (123), test prep (95)

In the Classroom

Include videos during back to school preparation and planning with other staff members. Share with your student teacher as an excellent repository of teaching advice. Use these videos as examples for creating your own videos to share with your teaching colleagues.

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Mega Seating Plan - Rob Cowen

Grades
K to 12
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Make classroom management easier with the Mega Seating Plan seating chart creator. Import student data from a spreadsheet and set up the layout of your classroom. Choose to create a...more
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Make classroom management easier with the Mega Seating Plan seating chart creator. Import student data from a spreadsheet and set up the layout of your classroom. Choose to create a random seating arrangement or boy/girl setup. Drag and Drop students to adjust as you like. Include additional data, if desired, on the spreadsheet to show on your seating plan such as reading level or current grades.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): back to school (58), classroom management (135)

In the Classroom

Use this site at the beginning of the year to create a seating chart for your classroom. Use the drag and drop technology to configure the desks the way you want them. Trying to separate the most social students? Experiment with different seating layouts until you find the one you think might work. This tool will also make useful diagrams for your sub plans. Flip your classroom a new way by having students "design" a dream classroom as part of a math lesson on measurement or a lesson on simple map skills. Suddenly, the classroom tool becomes a student tool!

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eReader's Theater - Firefly eLearning

Grades
2 to 8
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Take Reader's Theater to the next level with free resources from eReader's Theater. Click the Teaching Resources tab to find teaching tips, downloadable assessments, and graphic organizers....more
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Take Reader's Theater to the next level with free resources from eReader's Theater. Click the Teaching Resources tab to find teaching tips, downloadable assessments, and graphic organizers. Check out the Costumes tab for ideas and tips for making costumes and props for your Reader's Theater productions. The scripts aren't free.

tag(s): costumes (6), crafts (41), plays (37), readers theater (17)

In the Classroom

Search this site for some new ideas to use in your classroom. Take advantage of the free resources to energize your Reader's Theater activities. Challenge cooperative learning groups to create videos of their productions and share them on a site such as TeacherTube, reviewed here. If you or your school librarian are trying to create a "maker center," the Costumes tab has many projects to build that aren't just costumes.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Trandori - Trandori LLC

Grades
1 to 12
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Trandori is a search engine for finding and sharing interactive educational problems, mostly math related. Use the search tool to choose subjects, grade level, topic, and keywords....more
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Trandori is a search engine for finding and sharing interactive educational problems, mostly math related. Use the search tool to choose subjects, grade level, topic, and keywords. Create and add problems using the Canvas Designer tool. Account registration isn't necessary, but it allows you to add problems to a queue, convert interactive problems to PDF, and take advantage of privacy options for sharing problems.

tag(s): addition (251), division (172), energy (198), fossil fuels (18), measurement (159), multiplication (227), photosynthesis (33), problem solving (272), search engines (65), subtraction (208), vocabulary (323), vocabulary development (125)

In the Classroom

Use Trandori to find interactive problems for sharing on your interactive whiteboard or as homework assignments. When using your whiteboard, have students use a free voting tool such as Mentimeter, reviewed here, to choose an answer using a mobile device or their computer.

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Archive of Recorded Poetry and Literature - Library of Congress

Grades
6 to 12
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Listen to audio recordings of renowned writers and poets dating back to 1943 at this remarkable site. The audio files contain nearly two thousand recordings of participants in literary...more
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Listen to audio recordings of renowned writers and poets dating back to 1943 at this remarkable site. The audio files contain nearly two thousand recordings of participants in literary events of the Library of Congress, most digitized from the original magnetic tape reel recordings. Use the drop-down box to sort by date, title, and more. Refine your choices using the options on the left side of the homepage. Click on the audio links to listen online. Be sure to view the Rights & Access link provided with each file for fair use information.

tag(s): authors (120), biographies (87), literature (275), poetry (228)

In the Classroom

Share recordings on your interactive whiteboard to introduce literature readings in your classroom. Take advantage of the many biographies on this site for use when introducing poetry and literature. Include information from this site when creating timelines (with music, photos, videos, and more) using Capzles, reviewed here.View all of TeachersFirst's Editor's Choices for Poetry Month here. Have students use Fakebook, reviewed here, to create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook about an author or poet found on this site.

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Mobile Learning: Why Tech Savvy Educators Are Turning to Podcasts - Buzzsprout

Grades
1 to 12
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This article from Buzzsprout offers a great deal of information about mobile learning and how to incorporate it into classrooms. Discover the importance of mobile learning along with...more
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This article from Buzzsprout offers a great deal of information about mobile learning and how to incorporate it into classrooms. Discover the importance of mobile learning along with some of the hurdles faced when incorporating it in any learning situation. Read about the advantages of using podcasts in a flipped classroom or as a solution for self-paced learning. Be sure to check out the infographic included with this article that has statistics about the increased presence of mobile learning.

tag(s): podcasts (52), professional development (123), radio (26)

In the Classroom

Share this article with parents (or administrators) as an explanation and introduction to using podcasts in your classroom. Share with other teachers as part of your professional development sessions on learning technologies. Explore these other options for choosing your podcasting tools - PodOmatic, reviewed here, and Spreaker, reviewed here.

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Ultimate Camp Resource - Ultimate Camp Resources

Grades
K to 7
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Enter the world of Ultimate Camp Resources and find a myriad of songs, games, videos, and more to use at home, at camp, or in a classroom. Then check out ...more
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Enter the world of Ultimate Camp Resources and find a myriad of songs, games, videos, and more to use at home, at camp, or in a classroom. Then check out the blog for even more resources! If your district blocks YouTube, the videos may not be viewable. You could always view them at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): back to school (58), family (59), songs (52), sports (97), video (254)

In the Classroom

Bookmark this tool for the first week of school or any time that you want to experience some "team-building" in your class. Use this site to find games and activities for classroom icebreakers. Find ideas on this site to build relationships among students. Share this site with parent helpers to find ideas for classroom parties.

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Reading Glue - James Stubblefield

Grades
1 to 7
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Track reading level changes, assessments, how much is read, and overall performance over time with Reading Glue's dashboard for parents and teachers. Turn reading logs into an online,...more
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Track reading level changes, assessments, how much is read, and overall performance over time with Reading Glue's dashboard for parents and teachers. Turn reading logs into an online, interactive experience for everyone. Use the teacher dashboard to take anecdotal notes, set goals, and see how each student is performing. Choose from a variety of activities using reading strategies like Prior Knowledge, Questioning, Making Connections, Inferencing, and more. Also, see a list of books to use with each of the reading strategies. The parent dashboard has reading levels, log entries, genre, student notes, and more. Parents can be signed up for more than one child. Everyone can use the virtual library to see if the local library carries the book you want to read. See titles by reading strategy and level. Parents will see if a book is below, at, or above their child's reading level. Teachers can add titles from their own libraries. Sign up using your email and password and receive a welcoming email with a video explaining how to set up a classroom, student accounts, and invite parents. You can also find these under the Help menu. It's all FREE!

tag(s): book lists (128), guided reading (47), independent reading (128)

In the Classroom

Create an account with your email. Create your dashboard by adding a class name. You can create multiple classes and groups within classes. Student accounts are created manually. Keep track of student performance by viewing the teacher dashboard where you can see student reading logs. Share this site with students (and parents at back to school night) using your interactive whiteboard or projector.

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Plum Landing - WGBH Educational Foundation

Grades
1 to 3
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Join Plum, an alien video game designer from another planet, and explore the natural world through interactive games, videos, adventures, and real life activities to try. Live videos...more
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Join Plum, an alien video game designer from another planet, and explore the natural world through interactive games, videos, adventures, and real life activities to try. Live videos feature kids exploring different biomes and recording data for Plum. Before each game, learn about the environmental focus that will help you win the game. Ideas for exploring and investigating outside, bring environmental concepts to your own community. Post images, thoughts, and ideas to share with Plum in the gallery. A parent section offers activities to do online and outside. The educator section provides curriculum for Afterschool programs, Clubs, or Camps. Lesson plans designed for after school enrichment, clubs, and camps give curriculum topics, standards, video links, conversation starters, and related activities.

tag(s): conservation (127), earth (228), earth day (112), environment (317), game based learning (103)

In the Classroom

Capture student interest in environmental science, zoology, conservation, and ecology with Plum and her human friends! Use this site in science as a way to introduce the study of the Earth, biomes, or food chains. Share the videos on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Add to computers for center time. Use Plum's adventures to inspire further adventures involving the students. Use videos as a multimedia resource to supplement the science textbook. Use the adventures to inspire either narrative or expository writing. During Earth Day, students can explore your school community. Explore other science topics and have students create comics using a tool such as Write Comics, reviewed here, or digital storytelling projects with their own images, observations, and stories using UtellStory, reviewed here. UtellStory allows narrating and adding text to a picture. ESL/ELL and learning support students will find this site useful with reading support, video, and demonstrations. Have students research topics mentioned in the videos for deeper understanding. Have students create blogs, using Throwww, reviewed here, to document their learning and observations. Throwww enables you to create "quick and easy" blogs to be used one time only. Throwww provides a unique URL for sharing your blog. Share research and stories with other classes in your school, students' families, and on your class website or wiki.

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GetEdFunding - CDW-G

Grades
K to 12
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GetEdFunding curates and collects an up to date database of grant and award opportunities for school systems. Create a free account using your email to search and view available grants....more
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GetEdFunding curates and collects an up to date database of grant and award opportunities for school systems. Create a free account using your email to search and view available grants. Once you have an account, save items of interest and stay up to date on upcoming deadlines. In addition to the site's very large database, be sure to check out the Resources link for articles, videos, a glossary, and access to the online community forum. If your district blocks YouTube, the videos may not be viewable. You could always view them 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.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): grants (19)

In the Classroom

Create your account and explore GetEdFunding to find many grant opportunities. Apply for a grant using the tips provided in the Resources link. Be sure to share with your colleagues as an excellent resource for all grade levels and subjects. Consider creating a committee of interested teachers to divide up grant writing and win money for your school.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Buzzsprout - Tom Rossi

Grades
K to 12
2 Favorites 1  Comments
 
Buzzsprout offers free, easy to use, podcast hosting. Sign up to receive two hours of hosting per month. Uploads remain available for 90 days. Buzzsprout's dashboard walks you through...more
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Buzzsprout offers free, easy to use, podcast hosting. Sign up to receive two hours of hosting per month. Uploads remain available for 90 days. Buzzsprout's dashboard walks you through the process of creating and sharing podcasts and provides information on the time remaining in your current cycle. Copy and paste one line of code to include your podcast directly on any website.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): DAT device agnostic tool (198), podcasts (52)

In the Classroom

Even if you aren't ready to create podcasts, share the How To Make a Podcast page with your students with excellent tips for creating any type of speaking presentation. Create regular or special podcasts to share on your class web page or wiki. Have readers (perhaps older buddies) build fluency by recording selected passages for your non-readers. Launch a service project for your fifth or sixth graders to record stories for the kindergarten to use in their reading and listening center. Have students create "you are there" recordings as "eyewitnesses" to historical or current events. Make a weekly class podcast, with students taking turns writing and sharing the "Class News." Have students create radio advertisements for concepts studied in class (Buy Dynamic DNA!). Have students write and record their own stories or poetry in dramatic readings. Language students or beginning readers could record their fluency by reading passages and listening to themselves. Allow parents to hear their child's progress reading aloud, etc. Compare world language, speech articulation, or reading fluency at two points during the year. Have your Shakespeare students record a soliloquy. Write and record a poem for Father's or Mother's Day (or other special events) and send the URL as a gift to that special person. If you have gifted students who lean toward the dramatic, this tool is simple enough for them to create dramatic mini-casts without needing a video camera.

Comments

The podcasting 101 information is incredibly helpful for anyone wishing to begin podcasting. It also establishes tips that can be helpful for any speaker (as the description says). Patricia, NJ, Grades: 6 - 12

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GIMP - Jens T. Lautenbacher and Adrian Likins

Grades
K to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
 
GIMP is a free software download to use when working with images and photos. Features include paint tools, photo retouching, animation, and much more. GIMP provides an extensive tutorial...more
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GIMP is a free software download to use when working with images and photos. Features include paint tools, photo retouching, animation, and much more. GIMP provides an extensive tutorial library broken into categories for beginning through expert users.

tag(s): editing (61), images (266), photography (160)

In the Classroom

Use this tool anytime photos need to be edited for use on class blogs, wikis, or in presentation tools found here. In primary grades, this tool could be useful for teachers to use to edit pictures from a field trip, science experiments, and more. Share the editing process with your younger students using your interactive whiteboard or projector. Edit together! Encourage older students to use this site themselves on images for projects or presentations. Use this tool in photography or art classes. Use the editor to edit pictures to fit styles of pictures when doing historical reports or to set a mood. Use text options for the photos themselves to tell the stories. Have students annotate or label Creative Commons online images of cells, structures of an animal, and much more.

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SRecorder - SRecorder Company

Grades
K to 12
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Record a PC desktop with or without sound using free software from SRecorder. This software works only with Windows Operating Systems. After downloading and installing the software,...more
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Record a PC desktop with or without sound using free software from SRecorder. This software works only with Windows Operating Systems. After downloading and installing the software, use the desktop shortcut to begin the recording. Choose to view the entire desktop or select a specific area using the crop box provided. Click the red button to record, then use the icons on the screen to save to your computer or share to social networking sites.

tag(s): video (254)

In the Classroom

Use SRecorder to record instructions for using websites. Share how to perform problems, step by step directions for any project, and much more. Leave a video message for your substitute teacher or even your class! Create a video message to share with parents about current projects, clips from field trips, and more. Share on your class website for students to view at home.

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Ranger Rick Animals - National Wildlife Federation

Grades
K to 7
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Access trivia, jokes, interactives, and information about animals and people that are helping wildlife and the environment. Ranger Rick Jr. includes information geared more toward the...more
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Access trivia, jokes, interactives, and information about animals and people that are helping wildlife and the environment. Ranger Rick Jr. includes information geared more toward the primary grades and the Ranger Rick Magazine is geared toward grades 4-7. Find projects, crafts, songs, printables, recipes, and outdoor activities to use with individuals or a class. It is full of bright colors, kid-friendly graphics and real life pictures that go along with the information. There is no login required for this site; you can hop on and dive right in. Be sure to see the Parents and Educators sections.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): animal homes (41), animals (276), DAT device agnostic tool (198), game based learning (103), guided reading (47), independent reading (128), scientists (69)

In the Classroom

In the Animals sections, elementary students can conduct research on different kinds of animals including their place in the animal kingdom. At computer stations/centers have students look at the sets of animal pictures and identify common characteristics that are found for each set of animals to determine why they are categorized into each part of the animal kingdom. Use the interactive games as a center at an interactive whiteboard/projector. The games are fast and simple and can be used as a lesson opener to engage and capture the students attention.

The comic strip style stories featured in Rick's Adventures are great for cross-curricular lessons, predictions, and problem-solving skills as Rick often finds himself or his animal friends in a sticky situation. Once completed, have students use an online comic strip tool such as Chogger, reviewed here. Next select a tool that suits your student's age using one of the tools and ideas included in this collection, to publish the student comics.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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