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Dialect Survey Maps - Joshua Katz/North Carolina University

Grades
5 to 12
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Explore the vast diversity of language in the United States through a variety of dialectical maps. What is your dialect? Click on Take...more
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Explore the vast diversity of language in the United States through a variety of dialectical maps. What is your dialect? Click on Take this survey and find out to access the New York Times site that currently shares 25 of the questions in the survey. Then use the Dialectic Survey Maps site to understand the results more fully. Choose the dialect question from the dropdown at the left to see maps of results. Selections are color coded so it is easy to see where each result is on the map. There are 122 items on the survey and three types of maps to display the results for each item. See results via Static, Click(able), and City maps. Click on an area on the Static map or select one of the hundreds of City maps to get results in percentages by color.

tag(s): diversity (36), maps (288), word choice (26)

In the Classroom

Use your projector to show your class the different dialects for different areas of the U.S. Choose one of the kid-popular questions, i.e. Do you call a carbonated drink a soda, pop, or Coke? Show students how the results for your geographical area compare to others. If the New York Times site is still available, have students try the survey themselves for homework. Help students to notice that language is dynamic and changes according to region. Emphasize that using a dialect is not incorrect. They do not represent a language deficiency. Speaking a vernacular dialect is not the result of poor or incomplete language learning. Correctness in language is a matter of social acceptability. Though there is a "standard" English taught in schools, dialects must be respected as evidence of social identity and linguistic expertise. What are some examples students can give for special ways their family says something? What about in a social context, as in country western fans vs rapper fans? This site is also helpful for ESL/ELL and world language students to REALIZE that pronunciations and word choice vary and can identify where the speaker is from.

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170 Online Ebooks for Young Kids - Matt Gomez

Grades
K to 3
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This site uses Symbaloo webmixes to group various free eBooks found all over the web. Options include Read To Me stories, National Geographics for...more
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This site uses Symbaloo webmixes to group various free eBooks found all over the web. Options include Read To Me stories, National Geographics for Kids, Starfall books, and more. Choose any of the links to view the Symbaloo project. Then pick any story to begin. If your district blocks YouTube, the eBooks 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.

tag(s): animals (276), ebooks (41), holidays (147), literature (275), preK (279), reading lists (73)

In the Classroom

Create a link on classroom computers to any of the Symbaloo Webmixes for students to view stories on their own. Create your own Symbaloo account and add these webmixes to your account for easy reference, viewing, and sharing. Include this site on your class web page for students and parents to access as for many interesting eBooks for young children. Share these in your library/media center as listening centers, as well.
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Population Education - Population Connection

Grades
6 to 12
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Learn about population! Highlights of this site include both world and US population counters. Be sure to check the Classroom tab to search for lessons, find information about population,...more
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Learn about population! Highlights of this site include both world and US population counters. Be sure to check the Classroom tab to search for lessons, find information about population, and even search by themes. Connect activities to your state's latest standards. This site also includes demonstration videos of some of the classroom activities. Click on the Curriculum tab at the top and slide to Population Information. Although the site is selling some teaching materials and workshops, there are free lessons available. There are 15 Infographics highlighting global issues and trends. Find out about carbon dioxide emissions and energy consumption, meat and paper consumption, global undernourishment, and many more issues. The videos are hosted on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable. You could always view the videos at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid reviewed here to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): population (60), resources (112)

In the Classroom

Use the "Find a Lesson" search to discover population education activities and information that will be useful in your curriculum or classroom. Find demonstration videos of how to use the lessons within the classroom. Be sure to preview and show the World Population Video (aka: the "dot video") to your classes. Share the video on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Use these resources when discussing population of organisms and then discussing human population.
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Alice - Carnegie Mellon University

Grades
6 to 12
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Alice will have your students in wonderland as they use this innovative 3D programming environment targeted to middle and high school students. Be the director of a movie or the ...more
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Alice will have your students in wonderland as they use this innovative 3D programming environment targeted to middle and high school students. Be the director of a movie or the creator of a video game. 3D objects appear in an on-screen virtual world imagined by the creator and move around according to the directions you give by dragging and dropping tiles. The drag and drop technique provides a more engaging programming experience for first time programmers. Alice provides exposure to object-oriented programming. Alice has practical value for students to learn how computers think. The instructions correspond to standard statements in a production oriented programming language, such as Java, C++, and C#. While using Alice, programmers are able to immediately see how their animation program runs and the behavior of the objects in their animation. Manipulate camera angles and lighting to make further enhancements. Alice is a revolutionary method to teach programming, especially to first-time learners. It allows students to understand programming concepts, a 21st century skill.

tag(s): animation (63), digital storytelling (142), video (253)

In the Classroom

Be sure to check with your Technology Department, as many districts require authorization to download or install new applications. Plan ahead as you request that this application be installed on your classroom or laptop cart computers. Alice provides an opportunity for students to create and learn how to problem solve. Subscribe to the teacher list to receive updates and integration ideas for Alice. The purpose of this list is to provide an easy way to ask questions and collaborate with the Alice teaching community. View and use activities to increase programming knowledge and the use of the Alice program.

Students quickly catch on to Alice when allowed to play and easily see what they can make from it. Provide a simple assignment with defined rules/tasks to learn the tools as well as the drag and drop interface. Have students use a storyboard to organize their creation in order to keep tabs on students and their creations. Build games to review curricular material for assessments. Have students create videos or digital stories to bring a subject to life. Teachers of gifted can turn their students loose to create animations about individual interests or research projects.

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Scrible Student Edition - Scrible

Grades
4 to 12
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Transform your students' web-based research with Scrible. Highlight and annotate web pages and easily save, share, organize, and collaborate on Internet-based research. Scrible offers...more
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Transform your students' web-based research with Scrible. Highlight and annotate web pages and easily save, share, organize, and collaborate on Internet-based research. Scrible offers browser bookmarklets for Firefox, Chrome, Safari, and Internet Explorer. With the Scrible bookmarklet installed, when you're on a page just click the bookmarklet to launch a menu of bookmarking tools. Access your work right where you left off from editing. Use the option to format your bibliographies as you bookmark. Compile your article clippings into one package. Students may sign up using their academic email address. (If your school's domain name is not recognized as "academic," sign up for the free account and send a "feedback" email explaining that your email address is that of a student.) Student Scrible accounts have double the storage capacity of the standard free account. Educators sign up for the Basic Edition and then click the feedback link to let Scrible know you're an educator. They will set you up with a special edition which includes the same features. Work smarter, not harder with Scrible. Saving your bookmarks with Scrible allows you to easily go back to review a site, and you'll see immediately why you bookmarked that site.

tag(s): citations (34), summarizing (13)

In the Classroom

Your students' online research will be efficient and effective with Scrible. Students can take notes on their bookmarks. They only need to bookmark the part of the website they need for their assignment. Students can collaborate with peers on their research. Post articles and documents online for your students to highlight and annotate. Bookmark this tool on your website or blog for your students to access in or outside of the classroom. Use Scrible to annotate professional development articles or to highlight important information for your students. The best part? It will instantly create your bibliography for you!

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Climate Change: Lines of Evidence - Division on Earth And Life Studies, National Academies

Grades
5 to 12
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Find seven videos about climate change and the evidence scientists have about recent climate change and its causes. The scientific community, on the whole, has accepted the main body...more
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Find seven videos about climate change and the evidence scientists have about recent climate change and its causes. The scientific community, on the whole, has accepted the main body of evidence about climate change and the causes. If unsure what the controversy is all about, or possibly to validate your own opinion, become more knowledgeable about climate change and causes by watching these videos. Offered in seven segments, this content replicates a longer video by the same name, making for easier viewing and understanding. Develop an informed opinion about this highly controversial issue. These videos are hosted on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, 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.

tag(s): atmosphere (26), climate change (64), earth (228)

In the Classroom

Watch the series of videos as a class or assign them for homework, in a flipped classroom strategy. If using the flipped classroom strategy, use a program like Grockit Answers, reviewed here, where you can embed questions at certain points in the video. Another idea that would put you at the top of the scale as a Common Core prepared teacher would be to use a program like Research Assistant, reviewed here, to help you find articles about climate change, greenhouse emissions, carbon emissions, etc. from many different sources. Then embed the article and video in a program like Actively Learn, reviewed here, or Cirrculet, reviewed here.
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polltogo - Inspirapps, Inc.

Grades
K to 12
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Use polltogo to create polls for user response during a meeting or class time. Connect with your audience in many ways. Create a question and select type of answers, how ...more
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Use polltogo to create polls for user response during a meeting or class time. Connect with your audience in many ways. Create a question and select type of answers, how long the poll will last, password or not, and more options. Receive notifications about your poll via your email. Each poll is free for twenty people to vote. Tweet about polltogo and receive another thirty credits so thirty more people can vote. Choose to receive results (via email) after every vote or at the end of the voting period. Interim and final results can also be viewed online. Another great feature is embedding the results link into a PowerPoint or Keynote slide to project results during a presentation. Polltogo is a device-agnostic voting tool and will auto-adapt to display on any mobile or desktop device.

tag(s): polls and surveys (48)

In the Classroom

Use this tool easily in your Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) classroom since all students will be able to access it for free, no matter what device they have. One of the question choices for polltogo is "Feedback" which is perfect for formative assessment or asking what students need help with after a lesson. 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. Encourage students to incorporate polls during class presentations as a test to see who is listening or for questions the audience might have. Use polltogo to make parent polls and post on a class website to keep the lines of communication open.

Comments

Very easy to use. F, , Grades: 0 - 12

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NYLearns.org - The Research Foundation of State University of New York and PL

Grades
K to 12
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Enter the world of Common Core with NYlearns. Find a myriad of free resources including activities, learning experience unit, lesson plans, multimedia, teacher resources, web-based...more
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Enter the world of Common Core with NYlearns. Find a myriad of free resources including activities, learning experience unit, lesson plans, multimedia, teacher resources, web-based practice, constructed response questions, document based questions, and rubrics in elementary, intermediate, and commencement. An overview of Assessment includes basics, and assessment builder in which you may choose grade level and subject. Currently, memberships are available to school districts to have access to e-portfolio, website, e-planner, my curriculum, and assessment builder.

tag(s): commoncore (92)

In the Classroom

Begin or extend your experiences with Common Core. Find real examples to use or be inspired to create one of your own. Educators and administrators alike can examine, discuss, and reflect on website materials and current practices. Save this in your bookmarks or favorites to explore as time permits.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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International Human Development Indicators - United Nations Development Programme

Grades
9 to 12
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Use the "Stat Planet" interactive maps to visualize development data around the World. Choose various indicators such as Poverty, Gender Inequality, and more. Change parameters of the...more
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Use the "Stat Planet" interactive maps to visualize development data around the World. Choose various indicators such as Poverty, Gender Inequality, and more. Change parameters of the graph and map. Use the Indicators and Data Explorer pages on this site to begin research about many factors of human development in the World. View the information in various languages.

tag(s): population (60)

In the Classroom

Student groups or the full class can view data and graphs of various indicators and brainstorm questions to understand the data. What factors exist in various countries or areas of the World? What conditions need to change to reverse troubling trends and to create greater equality of individuals in the World? Break these questions down into major focus topics to be researched and presented by members of the class. Since this site can be viewed in numerous languages, use this tool in a world language class. Gain understanding of the factors that influence places you read about in the news and faraway cultures. In government or civics classes, talk about how public policies affect or reflect development data. In math classes, use this site to see how statistics can be applied to decision making and international issues.
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ProcessOn - ProcessOn.com

Grades
7 to 12
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Create diagrams, flowcharts, organizational charts, and more using ProcessOn. After a short registration process, create your diagram using templates provided or start from scratch....more
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Create diagrams, flowcharts, organizational charts, and more using ProcessOn. After a short registration process, create your diagram using templates provided or start from scratch. Creation tools are similar to Microsoft Word setup, allowing easy personalization with colors, shapes, text, images, and more. Easily collaborate using tools such as an online chat. Click the Invite Collaborators link to send an invitation. Save files on the site or download directly to your computer.

tag(s): charts and graphs (195), concept mapping (22), graphic organizers (43), venn diagrams (16)

In the Classroom

Use this site to create your own charts or diagrams to share on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Challenge students to create their own charts using this tool. Create charts for literature that you are reading in class, pinpointing the plot, conflict/resolution, and more. Create a diagram to highlight important dates in an individual's life or even dates in a war. Students could use this site for a project on any topic: science, government, history, literature, and many others. Have students create study guides using this site. Share or embed the BEST maps on your class website. One of the best aspects of this site is that students can collaborate online for group projects. Learning Support teachers can encourage small groups to create study guides together, reinforcing their knowledge as they discuss and work together.

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Nelson Mandela Biography - bio.com

Grades
4 to 12
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Explore the life of Nelson Mandela with this informative site from Biography.com. Contents include facts of Mandela's life, photos, and videos profiling his life and leadership. One...more
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Explore the life of Nelson Mandela with this informative site from Biography.com. Contents include facts of Mandela's life, photos, and videos profiling his life and leadership. One especially useful portion of the site includes a printable study guide including vocabulary, extension activities, and more. There is a lot here to explore.
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tag(s): 20th century (51), black history (59), civil rights (117), heroes (24), south africa (10)

In the Classroom

Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector as an introduction to your Civil Rights, Black History, or Heroes unit. Allow students to explore on their own. Use the study guide as a resource for vocabulary, deepening understanding, or for extension activities. Use an online tool such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here) to compare Nelson Mandela to other Civil Rights leaders such as Martin Luther King. Have students create timelines about Civil Rights (with music, photos, videos, and more) using Capzles (reviewed here). Have students use Fakebook (reviewed here) to create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook about Civil Rights leaders.
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Nelson Mandela - BBC

Grades
3 to 8
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Find a good introduction and overview of the life of Nelson Mandela geared toward elementary students (and middle school). View basic information, such as why Mandela is famous. Take...more
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Find a good introduction and overview of the life of Nelson Mandela geared toward elementary students (and middle school). View basic information, such as why Mandela is famous. Take a look at young Mandela, problems in South Africa, and his life as a world statesman. Scroll through several fun facts about Mandela, play a game of Audience with Mandela, explore photographs and videos, or take a short quiz. This site was created in the UK. American English speakers may notice some slight spelling or vocabulary differences.

tag(s): biographies (86), civil rights (117), heroes (24), south africa (10)

In the Classroom

Introduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students explore this site independently or in small groups. Use this site as an anticipatory set or "activator" to introduce a unit or lesson for Black History Month or about heroes in Civil Rights. As you discuss Martin Luther King, Jr, include discussion of major Civil Rights leaders from other countries. Have students create an annotated image of Nelson Mandela including text boxes and related links using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here. Have students create maps of Mandela's journeys using Animaps (reviewed here). Students can add text, images, and location stops! Have students create timelines (with music, photos, videos, and more) using Capzles (reviewed here).
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Nelson Mandela - Facts - Nobel Media

Grades
3 to 12
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Explore information and facts about the 1993 Nobel Peace Prize winner, Nelson Mandela, straight from the Nobel Prize website. In addition to basic biographical information, view videos...more
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Explore information and facts about the 1993 Nobel Peace Prize winner, Nelson Mandela, straight from the Nobel Prize website. In addition to basic biographical information, view videos of Mandela's Nobel lecture, a bibliography of his writings, a photo gallery and much more. The question and answer portion of the site contains basic information useful for even the youngest students, while older students may enjoy exploring the wall to find comments shared by the site's readers.

tag(s): 1960s (30), 1970s (12), 1980s (9), 20th century (51), biographies (86), black history (59), civil rights (117), heroes (24), south africa (10)

In the Classroom

Introduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students explore this site independently or in small groups. This site is perfect to include with Black History Month activities or in a unit on Civil Rights leaders. Have students create a simple infographic with words used to describe Mandela sharing their findings using Easel.ly, reviewed here or Venngage reviewed here. Have students create a word cloud of the important terms they learn from this site using a tool such as Wordle (reviewed here), Tagxedo (reviewed here), or WordItOut (reviewed here). Use an online tool such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here) to compare South Africa at the time of Mandela's arrest to current South Africa. Have students use Fakebook (reviewed here) to create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook about Mandela during his time in prison or after his release.

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The Museum of Modern Art - Khan Academy - Khan Academy and The Museum of Modern Art

Grades
6 to 12
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The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), in partnership with the Khan Academy, offers several tutorials exploring the world of contemporary and modern art....more
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The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), in partnership with the Khan Academy, offers several tutorials exploring the world of contemporary and modern art. View information in categories such as Printmaking, Behind the scenes at MoMA, and Performance Art. Each section contains several short videos exploring the topic. The videos are hosted on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable. You could always view the videos at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid reviewed here to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): art history (69), artists (75)

In the Classroom

Display and use these very short videos on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) to introduce and explore the world of art to students. Challenge cooperative learning groups to create videos based on other famous works of art and share them on a site such as TeacherTube reviewed here. Do a collaborative project with your school's art teacher, having students write in English/LA class and discuss art in that class. Have older students explore areas of this site to find artwork from time periods studied in Social Studies classes. Display one of the works of art and view the short video. Use the art piece as inspiration for a creative writing project. Use videos during career exploration units to demonstrate the different career options available within the field of art. Create a link to videos on classroom computers for students to view on their own or use the embed code to add a video on your class website or blog for additional exploration. Teachers of gifted who have students interested in visual arts can use this site to take them further, even if art is not your expertise!

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Crafting Digital Writing - Troy Hicks

Grades
6 to 12
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This companion page (wiki) for the book Crafting Digital Writing is a terrific resource for anyone who wants to share writing or present research results digitally, including...more
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This companion page (wiki) for the book Crafting Digital Writing is a terrific resource for anyone who wants to share writing or present research results digitally, including text and other media. Find suggestions and examples for digital media. Links include example pages for copyright law, a list of web publishing tools, tools for gathering information, citing sources, brainstorming, presentations, Video/Multimedia, Photo Editing, Screencasting, and several other topics. Examples include a student essay, a wiki of Death of a Salesman converted to PDF format, webpages, videos, and more.

tag(s): copyright (47), digital citizenship (58), digital storytelling (142), professional development (123), writing (358)

In the Classroom

The Common Core State Standards Anchor Standard for Writing CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.W.6 calls for students to use the technology to share their writing and to interact with others as part of this digital writing process. With this in mind, sharing this Digital Writing resource with your English department members and with science and history departments is a natural. This page is a terrific resource for any upper elementary or secondary teacher who wants students to produce writing or present research results digitally. For those interested, here is a video of Troy Hicks outlining the principles of his approach and the five themes he adheres to for a writing class: Troy Hicks Video. This video is hosted on YouTube. If Youtube is blocked at your school, it may be worth viewing at home prior to introducing your students to the resources. Use this companion wiki page directly with students or create an English department Symbaloo webmix or Livebinder of digital writing resources for students to practice ethical and powerful digital writing. Make digital writing a year long initiative in your school.

Comments

Excellent resources Patricia, NJ, Grades: 6 - 12

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Pamela recording software for Skype Basic Edition - PamConsult

Grades
K to 12
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Pamela is a downloadable software program that enables you to record the audio and video portions of Skype calls. Follow prompts to download on your computer. The FREE version includes...more
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Pamela is a downloadable software program that enables you to record the audio and video portions of Skype calls. Follow prompts to download on your computer. The FREE version includes 15 minutes of free recording time, and options to save in several formats such as mp3 and WAV files. This is a Windows only program.
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tag(s): skype (12)

In the Classroom

Use Pamela to record shorter Skype calls to save for future use. Embed and share recordings on your class website or blog. Share recordings with absentee students. Download the Professional or Business version for 30 days free use to access additional features such as longer recording times.

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Quibl - Quibl.com Inc.

Grades
7 to 12
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Debate with others or vote on topics of social and political interest on Quibl. This site offers an open debate platform. See the best of what both sides of an ...more
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Debate with others or vote on topics of social and political interest on Quibl. This site offers an open debate platform. See the best of what both sides of an issue have to offer and then decide where to put your comment or argument. There are guidelines for every submission, and moderators review every topic submission and all comments. Find a debate via search. Browse the categories you are interested in, sort the debate with filters, or use the map and the regions that are interesting to you. Though Quibl is monitored, the general public has access so content may not be appropriate for all students. Preview before sharing in a classroom.

tag(s): debate (41), persuasive writing (55), polls and surveys (48)

In the Classroom

To prepare students for Common Core Assessments on evidence and arguments, have them choose a popular topic on Quibl. Challenge students to research it so they can provide evidence for their stance when writing about their opinion or to refute another's. Use a whole-class account with a teacher email or individual student accounts, depending on your school policies and access. Science and social studies teachers can use this site for current events. When students are interested in a topic, access Quibl to see if there is a debate about it. If not, you may want to consider creating your own. In language arts, show the students both sides of an issue, then have them come up with an issue they care about that is not on Quibl. Have them write about both sides of an issue. Many students will have weak writing on the side opposite their opinion, and this is a teachable moment for word choice and phrasing. Have your students write about these "ready made" topics before showing them what others have to say. Once finished, they can read what others are thinking and add ideas to their opinion. Also, this would be an ideal time for them to look at the opposing opinion, decide which is the strongest point, and then teach them how to address concerns of others in their writing. For example, they can concede it is a valid point and then counter with another strong argument. If you teach French, give your students practice reading French by clicking on the FR tab. Though Quibl is monitored, the general public has access so be sure to review any issue before presenting it to your students.

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Tagboard - Tagboard.com

Grades
7 to 12
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Use this free tool to search a specific hashtag on all Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram posts using that hashtag. (A hashtag is simply a way of marking the general topic ...more
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Use this free tool to search a specific hashtag on all Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram posts using that hashtag. (A hashtag is simply a way of marking the general topic or audience for a tweet or Facebook update.) See all information in one place and then create a tagboard with that hashtag name. Send the link to the tagboard to others for them to follow. Refresh your tagboard to see all new Tweets and Posts. New to Twitter? Read more about Twitter at TeachersFirst's Twitter for Teachers page.

tag(s): microblogging (44)

In the Classroom

Use this tool to follow any political event such as The State of the Union address, elections, and other major events. Get a perspective of people in the country or the World by identifying the different responses and viewpoints from those in other locations. Compare viewpoints with those of the formal media. Follow any major news event or items related to the event (reactions to the Super Bowl commercials?) Follow major achievements, world events, and more. Use on an Interactive whiteboard or projector to introduce a class topic or follow current events. Have students submit a record of tweets that show their learning over time. Students can create an Infographic or other multimedia presentation about reflections and information learned from the Tagboard. Have students make a mash-up using one of the many TeachersFirst Edge Tools reviewed here. For your own professional learning, create a Tagboard to follow one of the many educational Twitter chat hashtags listed here.

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Global Closet Calculator - National Geographic Education

Grades
2 to 10
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Take a tour of your closet to find out where your clothes come from. Discover the concept of interdependence and the extent of our global footprints. Research where raw materials ...more
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Take a tour of your closet to find out where your clothes come from. Discover the concept of interdependence and the extent of our global footprints. Research where raw materials come from and how clothes are made. Consider the implications of manufacturing and transportation to get them to your closet. This interactive includes informative videos complete with transcript. You can save your place within the interactive by "getting a code" that you re-enter on return.

tag(s): natural resources (59), resources (112)

In the Classroom

When discussing the Food and Fiber system (materials used to produce food and the many products we use daily), use this site to gather initial information of where their items come from. As products are no longer made closer to our actual lives, many students are disconnected from the materials and processes used to create everyday products and are unaware of their global footprint. Students can continue research by investigating other items used daily to determine what they are made from, where they are manufactured, etc. Continue this process with the foods that they eat to show how many popular foods are very removed from the whole foods that we should be eating. In geography classes, have students use a reviewed geo/mapping tool from the TeachersFirst Edge to map the path across the globe from raw materials to finished products, just to make one pair of jeans. Discuss the role of natural resources and economics in determining this path.

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Patchwork Nation - Jefferson Institute

Grades
9 to 12
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Is the US a melting pot? A tossed salad? The Jefferson Institute suggests it is a "Patchwork Nation." This site was originally developed to chronicle the 2008 US Presidential election,...more
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Is the US a melting pot? A tossed salad? The Jefferson Institute suggests it is a "Patchwork Nation." This site was originally developed to chronicle the 2008 US Presidential election, but has been maintained and updated since that time. It presents the vast diversity of the United States using demographic data and categorizing communities into one of a dozen community types. With names like "Campus and Careers," "Military Bastions," and "Evangelical Epicenters" each community type represents an important subset of what makes up the American Experience. This site drills down much deeper than the typical red state/blue state dichotomy and challenges us to think about what characteristics work to define US citizens.

tag(s): branches of government (48), census (19), communities (35), democracy (12), demographics (19), politics (99)

In the Classroom

This site could be useful in a variety of classroom settings. A sociology class might grapple with the generalizations inherent in each of the 12 community types. What does it mean to be a "Tractor Country" community? The associated charts and demographics can help prove or disprove those theories. A government class might consider the impact of these different community types all existing within one Congressional district. How might that legislator best represent those communities at the State level or the Federal level? An economics class might speculate on the distribution of wealth in the US. What factors influence that distribution? A US History class could speculate about how these different communities have come to be. What impact has immigration had? Industrialization? Geography? Are there regional differences that could stem from the Civil War? And a statistics class would find plenty of raw data to play around with. In a "Patchwork Nation," what does it mean to be "average"?
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