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Doing What Works - US Department of Education

Grades
K to 12
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Looking for best practices and ways to provide evidence for current practices? Discover Doing What Works! Find research and resources in the subject areas of reading, math, science,...more
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Looking for best practices and ways to provide evidence for current practices? Discover Doing What Works! Find research and resources in the subject areas of reading, math, science, English fluency, and how to teach effectively for teachers and administrators. Current national reports reflect recent trends in education. Information is also geared to educating parents.

tag(s): grants (19), parents (58), professional development (133)

In the Classroom

Use Doing What Works to increase your knowledge of best practices and have research backing up your educational decisions. Need information and evidence for grants? Doing What Works is the go-to site! This site is a great site to recommend to eager parents to help them understand current educational practices, and also parent resources.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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99 Polls - 99 Widgets

Grades
K to 12
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Create a free poll or survey and share via email, website, blog, or even a social network. Engage all students with their active involvement with 99 Polls! It is a ...more
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Create a free poll or survey and share via email, website, blog, or even a social network. Engage all students with their active involvement with 99 Polls! It is a great tool that makes looking at data easy and interesting. Embed the URL in your website or email and you are good to go!

tag(s): polls and surveys (55)

In the Classroom

Liven up your classroom with 99 Polls. Use it as an anticipatory guide for introducing new content. Get kids thinking by asking tough questions leading to debates. 99 Polls can also serve as a class voting device. Make school-wide decisions with students, faculty, or parents! During reading week, discover your class, school, or school families' favorite books, or activities. During election time, this is an easy voting solution. At the beginning of the school year, 99 Polls is a great ice breaker. Students can use 99 Polls as a study tool or even quiz maker. Use as a data collection device in science or math.

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OK2Ask'® Go Google - Searching, Gmail, Google Maps July 2014 - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional development session from July 2014, opens in Adobe Connect. Explore Gmail, Google Calendar, Super Searching on Google, Google Maps, and...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional development session from July 2014, opens in Adobe Connect. Explore Gmail, Google Calendar, Super Searching on Google, Google Maps, and more. Explore ways to safely use Gmail in class. Learn how to use Google Calendar to get organized. Explore the world using Google Maps. Familiarize yourself with Google Trends, Google Correlate, Blog Searches, and more. Participants will be given time to explore. A question/answer period will also be available. Prerequisite: All participants MUST have a Google account. This session is for teachers at Beginner to Intermediate Technology Comfort Levels.

As a result of this session and through individual follow-up, teachers will: Find ways to incorporate both Google Calendar and Gmail in your classroom/position. Browse and explore Google Trends, Google Correlate, Blog Searches, and more. Learn about and navigate around Google Maps. (Follow-up) Create a lesson for your own classroom (or position) using one of the Google tools shared.

Applicable ISTE-T standards (2008)*: 1a and b, 2b and c, 3a and d * The text of these standards is copyrighted. Please read the full text at ISTE's standards page

tag(s): map skills (81), maps (292), organizational skills (129), search engines (64), search strategies (29)

In the Classroom

Get organized this year with Google Calendar. Learn about using gmail in your classroom. Take your students on a trip around the world - make them learn while they are having fun exploring! The possibilities are endless! Save yourself time searching using some of these search secrets shared during this session. Learn about search tools appropriate for even the youngest elementary students. Take a look at the resource page full of MANY great sites and ideas! Learn more about OK2Ask and upcoming sessions here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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A List of Twitter Educators by Subject Area - Alice Keeler

Grades
K to 12
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Are you looking for other educators to follow on Twitter? Check out this lengthy list of educator Twitter handles arranged by subject. The easiest way to view the full document ...more
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Are you looking for other educators to follow on Twitter? Check out this lengthy list of educator Twitter handles arranged by subject. The easiest way to view the full document is to click the link located under the heading "A Twitter Win." This link leads to a Google document with headings for all content areas as well as Ed Tech, Counselors, Administrators, and more. Use the scroll bar at the bottom of the document to view all categories. Add your own Twitter handle in the appropriate category for inclusion on this document.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): social networking (110), twitter (49)

In the Classroom

Explore the site to discover and follow educators who match your interests and needs. Read the Tweets about what is happening in other classrooms to gain some fresh, new ideas. Looking for more ways to use Twitter in the classroom? If you are the only person in your building who teaches a particular subject, such as gifted or learning support, this list can help you find like minds to share ideas or to set up collaborations between your students. Read more about Twitter at TeachersFirst's Twitter for Teachers page.

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what a great resource Susan, NY, Grades: 6 - 12

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Veezzle - Vezzle

Grades
K to 12
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Use Veezzle to search for royalty free stock photos and clip art. Veezzle sources its images from a variety of royalty free sites to provide you with an efficient experience. ...more
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Use Veezzle to search for royalty free stock photos and clip art. Veezzle sources its images from a variety of royalty free sites to provide you with an efficient experience. Preserved photographer notes on the images allow you to see what the photographer said about their work and any requests for credit. Veezzle is quite fast to find photos, and it's free of banners and pop-ups. Sort your search by relevance, popularity, and latest. Buttons under the search bar also allow you easily to navigate through the photo sets. Please note that license details for images found on source sites marked with an asterisk should be carefully checked as some copyrighted material can slip through the search filters for these particular sites. Disclaimer: The use of any image found using Veezzle is at your own risk. It is your obligation to verify, read, and respect the license of each photo and use it responsibly. Warning: Remind students about school and class rules about searching on the Internet. Give students explicit directions about what to search for. Some images are sexually graphic.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): copyright (49), creative commons (22), images (276)

In the Classroom

Is there a copyright conundrum in your classroom? It is important to teach students about copyright and owner's rights. Demonstrate good search practices as well as how to save the images on the student's computer. Teach the students how to provide full credit to the owner of the image. Use Veezzle to search for photos for presentations, projects, or research. Use the images for ESL/ELL students or speech/language students to create their own visual dictionary. Challenge your students to use images to illustrate vocabulary words using the images from Veezzle or to accompany their writing. Project an image or post it online to use as a writing prompt or to create descriptive sentences. Have one student describe the image as another creates a sketch from the description. Then, compare the described image to the real image. Have students create a multimedia presentation using Prezi, reviewed here, or another presentation tool. Be sure to hold students accountable by including a "digital citizenship" category in your project rubric, requiring proper credit for all images. You will want to spot check a few of the URLs to be sure they are actually correct credits. Share Veezzle on your class web page, wiki, or blog so students can access it anywhere, anytime.

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ShareDrop - Cowbell Labs

Grades
3 to 12
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Frustrated when trying to transfer files from one device to another? This resource is a free service that easily transfers files between devices without creating any kind of account....more
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Frustrated when trying to transfer files from one device to another? This resource is a free service that easily transfers files between devices without creating any kind of account. Use this resource in Opera, Chrome, or Firefox (not Safari or Internet Explorer!). It will work on your laptop, desktop, tablet, or mobile device. Please note: both devices must be connected to the same wireless network. Simply drag files into ShareDrop on one device and then open it on the other. For users familiar with AirDrop on Apple products, this tool looks and works similarly.

In the Classroom

This would be a good tool to use in a computer lab or with laptop carts, iPads, or Chromebooks where students don't have email addresses or Google Accounts for sharing work with their teachers or each other. Students and teachers simply go to the ShareDrop site. When students are ready to share their work with their teachers, they can drag it into the ShareDrop page on their laptops, desktops, or tablets. For those interested in security, files are not actually uploaded to a server. Instead, ShareDrop is a peer to peer connection. Teachers can "push out" files to students quickly and easily using this tool. During curriculum development and other professional development activities, members of a specific department (or even school-wide) can share resources and documents easily to each other. This is a MUST in 1:1 and BYOD classrooms! Student groups working on projects in class can gather and share files easily.

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Tizmos - tizmos.com

Grades
K to 6
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Tizmos offers a student-friendly bookmarking and home page dashboard tool that works for even the youngest of students. Small screenshots provide a visual representation of each link...more
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Tizmos offers a student-friendly bookmarking and home page dashboard tool that works for even the youngest of students. Small screenshots provide a visual representation of each link for ease of choice. Choose the "Try it now" link to get started then scroll to the bottom of the page and choose the free plan. Sign up using your email. The free account offers one folder and up to 30 Tizmos (bookmarks) for an unlimited period of time. Add sites by pasting in the URL. Add Tizmo's bookmarklet to your browser to easily add sites at any time. Drag and drop your bookmarks to arrange in any order. Make sure your page is marked public to share using your unique URL.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): bookmarks (62)

In the Classroom

Create a Tizmo for classroom computers for students to easily access frequently used websites. Share a link on your class webpage or newsletter for student use at home. Since the free account only offers one page, change your page throughout the year to include links to sites corresponding to current classroom content.

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Gamestar Mechanic - E-Line Media

Grades
4 to 9
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Level up your learning with Gamestar Mechanic. Gamestar Mechanic is a fantastic free site to learn about web-based game design and 21st Century skills. Your journey begins with a series...more
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Level up your learning with Gamestar Mechanic. Gamestar Mechanic is a fantastic free site to learn about web-based game design and 21st Century skills. Your journey begins with a series of mini adventure quests that teach you the core principles and fundamentals of game design. Earn new game design elements such as blocks for constructing levels, characters, and other items with each level of completion. The levels scaffold from learning about gaming principles to "repair" games to fix improper mechanics. Unlock more items to widen your workshop experience with the more missions you master. The workshop offers drag and drop tools to create your own original games without having to program. You must be able to beat your own game to publish it for friends, family, and the Gamestar Community to play. Game Alley is a space for players to publish and review games. Teachers have an extensive collection of lessons at their disposal, with clear goals provided for the student. This game contains no inappropriate content, but contains a fair amount of reading and may be too complex for younger players. All communication on the site is moderated, and there is no live chat of any kind, nor any use of personal information. Premium options are available for purchase. This review is for the FREE portion only.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): creativity (119), design (82), game based learning (112), gamification (74)

In the Classroom

Game design allows learners to build technical, technological, artistic, cognitive, social, and linguistic skills. Students can collaborate in small groups or with partners to work through the Quest adventure. Use Gamestar Mechanic as a platform for creative writing opportunities. Each level of the game unlocks the next section of the story. Games are an emerging form of self-expression and communication. Integrate spelling words, vocabulary words, and word wall words in the story. Challenge your gifted students to create math problem solving activities for each level of an original game. Students can collaborate by linking multiple games on a Tackk, (reviewed here), which allows students to provide the exposition to a multi-level challenge. Have students unlock content or clues for a unit by conquering Gamestar quests. Students can create review games for their peers with content from various subjects. Create an educational scavenger hunt for your students. Each level of the game unlocks a task or clue to a physical task around the classroom.

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Zoho Online Surveys - Zoho Corporation

Grades
3 to 12
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Creating online surveys just became easier and quicker using Zoho. Simply use the survey editor to add questions, edit, and modify your survey. Choose from 15 different question types...more
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Creating online surveys just became easier and quicker using Zoho. Simply use the survey editor to add questions, edit, and modify your survey. Choose from 15 different question types such as multiple choice or more advanced options such as a matrix. Use logic within responses to skip or present questions based on user response. Use social media to share surveys and feedback via links to Twitter, Facebook, and more. Add a QR code on print material if desired to access surveys.

tag(s): polls and surveys (55)

In the Classroom

Copy/paste the link to the poll or use the embed code to place in a wiki, blog, or a site. Be sure that students use the poll appropriately and know that personal information is not acceptable in poll responses. Use polls anywhere to record quick responses to questions. Have students create a poll about their interests and allow time to analyze responses and report findings. Use this site to vote for correct answers in math class, project ideas for science or social studies, social issues in current events, and practically any other subject area. Students should be encouraged to incorporate polls during class presentations. In an elementary math class, collect quick data to show use of graphs. Share the graphs on your projector or interactive whiteboard in "real time." Provide options for students to gain confidence in generating and analyzing statistics they have created. Include a quick parent poll, on a class website, to keep the lines of communication open. An iPad app is available for easy use in mobile settings.

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Planet Nutshell - Joshua Gunn

Grades
4 to 12
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Planet Nutshell offers short, comic videos hosted on Vimeo explaining diverse topics such as Internet safety, financial aid, and climate change. Many videos include a suitable grade...more
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Planet Nutshell offers short, comic videos hosted on Vimeo explaining diverse topics such as Internet safety, financial aid, and climate change. Many videos include a suitable grade range with the title and run three minutes or less in length. Share videos using the share link provided with the direct URL to the Vimeo site or embed code. Save videos for later viewing on your Vimeo account.

tag(s): climate change (65), financial aid (16), internet safety (106)

In the Classroom

Include videos during your Internet safety or climate change unit and view on your interactive whiteboard. Embed on your class website or blog and have students create animated movies online using Dvolver - Movie Maker, reviewed here,. Consider sharing one of the short Internet safety videos with parents during an Open House or Meet the Teacher night.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Drop! Cover! Hold On! - Southern California Earthquake Center at USC

Grades
K to 6
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Learn how to protect yourself in an earthquake at Drop! Cover! Hold On! Click on each of the three boxes to view important information about staying safe in an earthquake. ...more
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Learn how to protect yourself in an earthquake at Drop! Cover! Hold On! Click on each of the three boxes to view important information about staying safe in an earthquake. Play Beat the Quake to test your earthquake knowledge and answer questions about securing your home during an earthquake. Watch out, an earthquake could hit at any time!

tag(s): earthquakes (50), natural disasters (19)

In the Classroom

View this site on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) during emergency preparedness lessons or when studying natural disasters. Have students explore your classroom and make lists of how it can be prepared for an earthquake. Have students create online posters individually or together as a class using a tool such as Web Poster Wizard reviewed here or PicLits reviewed here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Online Math Learning - OnlineMathLearning.com

Grades
1 to 12
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Supplement math instruction in the classroom using OnLineMathLearning. Find videos explaining concepts, worksheets for practice, games, and activities. The site material correlates...more
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Supplement math instruction in the classroom using OnLineMathLearning. Find videos explaining concepts, worksheets for practice, games, and activities. The site material correlates to Singapore Math but is assessable to all learners. Explore math by grade level, or by topic. Find math worksheets by grade level or even by topic. There is also Test Prep for SAT, ACT, GMAT, GRE, ESL, IELTS, or TOEFL. Furthermore, this site has instruction on Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Animal facts, Programming, or English help. Find many science project ideas, listed by subject area.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): parents (58), video (273), worksheets (61)

In the Classroom

OnLineMathLearning is a nice supplement to your classroom. Use the videos on your interactive whiteboard to begin instruction. Differentiate your math instruction by student need and assign individually. Use the worksheets, games, and activities for extra practice and reinforcement. Allow students to see the ideas listed before they start their science fair projects. Recommend this website to parents so they can understand the "new way" of doing math. Be sure to list as a resource for extra practice on your class website. Keep the videos on this site in mind for using as models when assigning students to make their own videos. Be sure to include in your math parent night. Use as enrichment for your advanced students.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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CurriConnects Booklist - Natural Disasters - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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Find books about Natural Disasters in this leveled book list from CurriConnects. Natural disasters are a fascination for many students, but they can offer a new angle on many science...more
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Find books about Natural Disasters in this leveled book list from CurriConnects. Natural disasters are a fascination for many students, but they can offer a new angle on many science and social studies topics, as well as current events. These books provide experience with both nonfiction informational texts and fiction that requires students to draw inferences about the "facts." CurriConnects thematic book lists include ISBN numbers for ordering or searching, interest grade levels, ESL levels and Lexiles'''''® to match student independent reading levels to challenge, not frustrate. For more on text complexity and Lexiles'''''®, see this information from the Lexile Framework. Don't miss other CurriConnects themes being added regularly. If your library does not have the books, try interlibrary loan!

tag(s): book lists (132), disasters (39), hurricanes (40), independent reading (130), tornadoes (17)

In the Classroom

This collection of books could accompany a unit on earth science, weather, or even communities and government as your students look at how disasters affect people and how individuals or governments respond to adversity. These books would also connect well to a character education or guidance unit about dealing with a crisis. You could even include this list with a geography unit about differences in weather, climate, and landforms around the world. Talk about WHY natural disasters happen and/or the results afterward: How did communities change? What did people do in response? If having students read independently, you may want to pose a big question or two related to your curriculum for them to think about as they read. Have them return and share their answers after reading, perhaps as a presentation or small group project.

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Nourishing Gifted Through Technology in Any Classroom - TeachersFirst/Melissa Henning and Candace Hackett Shively

Grades
K to 12
3 Favorites 0  Comments
These pages, originally the support pages for a presentation at the ISTE conference 2014, offer resources, tools, and tips to nourish the needs of gifted in your classroom, along with...more
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These pages, originally the support pages for a presentation at the ISTE conference 2014, offer resources, tools, and tips to nourish the needs of gifted in your classroom, along with sanity savers to organize your multitasking class and your oftentimes "scattered" gifted learners. Find a multitude of reviewed tools, resources, and connections available via technology, so gifted students can work with differentiated academic content, leverage technology to foster their creativity, join in digital collaborations to extend the curriculum through individual interests, and even establish digital "me-portfolios." Start with the Helpful Background, basics about gifted students, and move through several pages to help you plan appropriate activities for your gifted students-- and help them be involved in the planning, as well. The authors of this article are both experienced teachers of gifted, so their suggestions are based on practical experience, not just "theory."

tag(s): differentiation (49), gifted (94)

In the Classroom

Mark these pages in your Favorites as a reference whenever you have gifted students. These students may or may not be officially identified, but sometimes trying these strategies will save you and the student a lot of frustration. When it comes time to offer choices, share the handpicked tool collections in this article with your gifted students so they have a solid place to start. For more ideas about gifted, try the gifted tag in reviews, use a keyword search including the term "gifted," or browse for the subject "Gifted" in the TeachersFirst Subject/Grade pages.

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Tapestry - readtapestry.com

Grades
K to 12
3 Favorites 0  Comments
   
Tapestry is a new way of storytelling across any device. Create and view beautiful "tappable" stories -- slideshows telling a simple story where readers tap to move forward. Explore...more
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Tapestry is a new way of storytelling across any device. Create and view beautiful "tappable" stories -- slideshows telling a simple story where readers tap to move forward. Explore Tapestries created by others sorted into categories such as popular, fashion, inspiration and more. To make your own Tapestry, click "Write a Tapestry" to view options. Options in the original editor include adding images, text formatting and color options, including a share button to send your Tapestry to others via social networking and email. Additional formats include resources for creating animated gif's and short stories. You do need an account to make your own Tapestry. There are free app versions for iOS and Android.

tag(s): DAT device agnostic tool (170), slides (65)

In the Classroom

Tapestry is perfect for use when creating and sharing short stories or poems. Use Tapestry to create quick slideshows for any classroom use. Set up a whole class account so students do not need individual logins. Easily share slides with information or (online) images on your website or blog to remind students about a project or assignment. Have students create presentations to "introduce" themselves to the class during the first week of school. Create a slide show to introduce any unit and have students guess what they will be learning. Create a Tapestry easily "on the fly" as a review resource to embed on your class website or blog. This site is perfect for your BYOD (bring your own device) classroom, since it is a "DAT." Make quick "cue cards" for students to read their lines off a projector, interactive whiteboard, or tablet for a video or school news broadcast! Paste your school or class announcements into slides and embed them on the class or school website.

Use this simple tool for students to make book promos for the library/media center. Display them on tablets or iTouches! Even the youngest gifted students can create simple presentations to go beyond regular curriculum in your class. Be sure to show young ones how to copy/paste the url for their finished work to send it to you or mark it in Favorites on the classroom computer or iPad. Have them make slide shows telling a story, explaining about a famous person, and more. During a unit on plants, have students create a guide to plant care or a show about the world's strangest plants. Have them write and illustrate slides as book reviews for independent reading they have done. This tool is simple enough for any student who can read.

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Classroom Authors - Classroom Authors

Grades
1 to 12
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Classroom Authors uses four easy steps to publish an e-book or a printed book: writing, editing, proofing, and publishing. Teachers create an account and a project. Have students join...more
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Classroom Authors uses four easy steps to publish an e-book or a printed book: writing, editing, proofing, and publishing. Teachers create an account and a project. Have students join the project with a code. Every student with the project code will have a chapter to create. Student accounts require email, but they can use a parent email address or an "+" extension of the teacher's email address, for instance, myemail+studentname@myschool.org. All students invited to the project can be working on their section, on multiple computers, at one time. Adding content is as easy as using a word processing program and uploading images to the gallery. Drag and drop the images into the chapter. Students can view the entire book, but only edit their own chapter. Teachers have complete control over editing, style and leaving comments. There are default templates so the books created are professional looking. Customize to give the book your own look. Classroom Authors is not only a vehicle for publishing; this tool will fulfill the Common Core Standard requirements for using technology for collaborating and writing across the curriculum. The best part of this site: it is EASY to use! Classroom Authors uses ePub to format e-books and offers one free printed book for each published project that has 10 or more students collaborating. Beyond that, there is a cost for printed books. E-books are FREE.

tag(s): creative writing (169), descriptive writing (42), ebooks (42), process writing (45), writing (362)

In the Classroom

Research proves publishing improves writing skills. Use Classroom Authors for class newsletters, an anthology of student written stories, and creating "choose your own adventure" type stories. Use this tool for research or opinion pieces in world language classes, science, math, or social studies. Some teachers have their students write novels for National Novel Writing Month, and at Classroom Authors they will be able to publish them.

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TinEye Labs - Idee, Inc.

Grades
2 to 12
0 Favorites 0  Comments
Search Creative Commons images by COLOR(s)! Choose up to five colors. As you choose each color, the tiled squares fill with a myriad of images that include that color. Click ...more
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Search Creative Commons images by COLOR(s)! Choose up to five colors. As you choose each color, the tiled squares fill with a myriad of images that include that color. Click a second color to view images that have both colors in them. Choose up to five colors. Click on "Next" in the lower right hand corner to view more pages of images. Click on the image you like to go to its Flickr site. Use CTRL-click (or right click) to view the different sizes of images and download pictures. Our editors did not notice any inappropriate photos. However, we highly recommend previewing this site before sharing with students. You will want to discuss what to do in the unlikely event that an image comes up that is not classroom appropriate. As with all Creative Commons images on Flickr, you will want to look at the details of the license to be sure you can use any image as you intend to. Some have limited use (such as no "derivative works"). Click the Rights link at the right when viewing an individual image to see the specifics.

tag(s): colors (80), creative commons (22), design (82), graphic design (34), images (276), media literacy (60), psychology (64)

In the Classroom

Use this tool when you seek specific color(s) to coordinate with a presentation or other class project. Use it to talk about the emotional impact of different colors, such as during a psychology unit on perception, a media literacy lesson on advertising color, or a discussion of color schemes in art class. Be sure to discuss the ethical use of images with proper credit, including Creative Common images. Start by having students carefully NAME files as they download and save them (include the photographer's name and a title). Remind them that they still need to give credit even if it is Creative Commons. This is a great site for looking at contrast, analogous and complementary color schemes, and other artistic expressions. Use TinEye Labs to uncover various elements of graphic design found in images. Art teachers will love the many options for demonstrating different color palettes on a projector or interactive whiteboard. Use the photo examples from Tineye Labs together with a tool such as Kuler, reviewed here, or Colour Lovers, reviewed here, to play hands-on with digital color. Share this with your gifted students who are especially interested in art or design.

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Adventure '14 - Jason Elsom

Grades
K to 12
3 Favorites 1  Comments
Experience a worldwide, virtual, culture exchange in November, 2014. Adventure '14 is an opportunity to work with students from another culture. The only equipment needed is a computer,...more
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Experience a worldwide, virtual, culture exchange in November, 2014. Adventure '14 is an opportunity to work with students from another culture. The only equipment needed is a computer, webcam, reasonable Internet connection, and a projector. Signing up indicates an interest, not a commitment. Sign up requirements: contact information about the school or group, age range, and website address. Also, indicate if there is an interest in pairing up with others by subject, language, or interests. Although there are places to fill in Twitter account information, having a Twitter account is not required. Get to know about people in another culture, embrace the opportunity to work together on a global project, and create a website together (optional).

tag(s): cross cultural understanding (117), cultures (107)

In the Classroom

Consider the many ways your class could collaborate. Science students can collaborate on labs, history students on research, and math students can solve some of the world's most difficult equations together. ESL/ELL students might collaborate with students who want to know about their experiences where one does not speak the language.

Partner teachers can choose a collaborative platform students can use to brainstorm ideas they have about the other country and culture before they meet. Use a projector and Lino, reviewed here, (no membership required) to discuss and informally assess prior knowledge about the culture with whom they will be working. Once the project is underway, go back to Lino occasionally, and add what they learned and whether it coincides with the students' original ideas. Ask the partner class if they will fill in the areas and ideas missed on your Lino. Also, consider asking the partner school to blog together. It is amazing the improvement you will see in student writing when they know they have an authentic audience! If you never blogged before, you might want to check out TeachersFirst Blog Basics for the Classroom. Use the blogs as a way to discuss topics related to both culture AND your curriculum: environmental topics, different types of government, or simply day to day life.

Comments

I intend to use this. It sounds like a great idea. , MD, Grades: 1 - 1

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Comics Head - Next Wave Multimedia

Grades
4 to 12
4 Favorites 0  Comments
   
Create one frame cartoons or entire comic books -- easily! Start by uploading a funny picture and create a comic from that. You can create your comics anywhere from any ...more
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Create one frame cartoons or entire comic books -- easily! Start by uploading a funny picture and create a comic from that. You can create your comics anywhere from any device and access them from the same device or any other. The drag and drop interface ensures ease of creation. Choose from a variety of options for characters, layout options, backgrounds, props, captions, and special effects. Choose options to use and drag and drop them onto the comic page. Simply undo or delete objects, move objects backward, forward, add text captions, and zoom in and out of the page. Register with the site (email required) to save, share, and print out creations. You can create a single page comic or full book length comics. You can download as a pdf or even share as an ebook! Some of the instruction videos are hosted on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, 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. Mobile apps are available, including "lite" (free) versions.

tag(s): comics and cartoons (71), DAT device agnostic tool (170), digital storytelling (155)

In the Classroom

In classes with younger students, use a whole class account under teacher control. In a BYOD classroom, let students set up their own accounts and use the app versions. When studying characterization, create a dialog to show (not tell) about a character. Use the dialog box (bubbles) to explain the sequence of a story, a science concept, or school news! Create a political cartoon. Why not use the comic strips for conflict resolution or other guidance issues (such as bullying). Emotional support and autistic support teachers can work with students to create strips about appropriate interpersonal responses and/or feelings. Sometimes it is easier for students to write it down (or create pictures) than use the actual words. World language and ESL/ELL teachers can assign students to create dialog strips as an alternate to traditional written assessments. Let your creative (or gifted) students take the comics even further by making them into entire books!

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GeoSettr - Create your own GeoGuessr Challenge - GeoSettr.com

Grades
4 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Create your own GeoGuessr game using five Google Map street view locations. NO membership is required! These challenges show actual views of mystery locations for people to guess where...more
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Create your own GeoGuessr game using five Google Map street view locations. NO membership is required! These challenges show actual views of mystery locations for people to guess where they are. (See this review of GeoGuessr to see how the challenges work.) Move the person to the desired map location to set a location for each round. When complete, GeoSettr generates a URL that will take people to your unique GeoGuessr page.

tag(s): map skills (81), maps (292)

In the Classroom

Make geography come to life by gamifying it! Create (or have students create) landform games (what do these locations have in common), culture games, travel collections, etc. Use this tool to explore world cultures (or languages), geography, historical locations, famous battle locations, and more. Demonstrate how to create a game, then have students create and play games of their own. Pair this activity with What Was There, reviewed here, and have students use an online tool such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram, reviewed here, to compare and contrast changes over time.

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