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Whyzz - Whyzz LLC

Grades
K to 8
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Find yourself stumped by all the strange questions students have? Are you looking for somewhere to go where adults can find the answers? Use this site to ask your question. ...more
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Find yourself stumped by all the strange questions students have? Are you looking for somewhere to go where adults can find the answers? Use this site to ask your question. Just type your question into the text box and several options for answers appear. The site was created for use by parents with young children, but it can really appeal to any age. Answers are written by site experts and by users themselves. Talk about the "source" of information as you share this site with your students! Registration is not necessary to ask questions. In order to add comments or an answer to another question, you must register. Registering requires use of an email address. If you choose to register your class, here is a tip: rather than using your personal or work email, create a free Gmail account to use for memberships. If you plan to have students register individually, you may want to create your own Gmail account with up to 20 subaccounts for each group of students (by code name or number) within your classes. Here is a blog post that tells how to set up GMail subaccounts to use for any online membership service.

Once registered, your Whyzz are kept as a record for review later. Site members can also comment on Whyzz answers which are offered by many professionals. Each answer also features a section called "exploration" where additional learning can take place as well as "related Whyzz." Check the spotlight, browse categories, and look at a featured answer.

tag(s): inquiry (37)

In the Classroom

Teachers may be the experts but the greater gift is helping students find answers. Use this site as a class to receive kid friendly answers to normal and weird kid questions. Whyzz not only give the why, but also the hows and the whats! Have students create interactive projects that share the answers to the "WHY." Have students create online posters on paper or do it together as a class using a tool such as Web Poster Wizard (reviewed here) or PicLits (reviewed here). Share the link with parents of younger elementary students to use at home, as well!

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Digital Footlocker: The Home Fires--Montana in WWII - Thinking Through American History

Grades
4 to 12
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Footlockers beckon to be opened. Likewise, a digital footlocker such as this site begs the visitor to click on its links to discover what being a Montana citizen was ...more
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Footlockers beckon to be opened. Likewise, a digital footlocker such as this site begs the visitor to click on its links to discover what being a Montana citizen was like during WWII. Open the footlocker and discover pdf versions of war bonds, listen to songs from the '40s, or imagine yourself in the clothing from that era. Not only is this site a glimpse into Montana during the 1940s, but you will find a little bit of your own region's history there, too. The site also includes history-oriented lesson plans available from the 1940s. More importantly, you may glean ideas from this site on how to create your own digital footlocker, an electronic collection of artifacts on a common topic.

tag(s): montana (4)

In the Classroom

Use this site to help students "feel" the realities of life during world war II. As you finish studying an era or concept, consider putting together a digital footlocker of your own on a wiki.

Want to know more about wikis? See the TeachersFirst Wiki Walk-Through. You may also want to google 'digital footlocker' to see other online footlockers assembled by teachers.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Christmas Traditions

Grades
4 to 6
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Explore customs, recipes, and Christmas legends from around the world. This site provides concise descriptions of holiday traditions, but is a bit heavy on text. Use this for background...more
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Explore customs, recipes, and Christmas legends from around the world. This site provides concise descriptions of holiday traditions, but is a bit heavy on text. Use this for background information to design a multi-cultural Christmas celebration in your classroom.

tag(s): christmas (64)

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The Martin Luther King, Jr. Center for Non-violent Social Change - The King Center

Grades
4 to 12
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This site is one of two official Martin Luther King sites. Come to this site to learn more about Martin Luther King, Jr: his life, his legacy, the holiday honoring ...more
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This site is one of two official Martin Luther King sites. Come to this site to learn more about Martin Luther King, Jr: his life, his legacy, the holiday honoring him, his wife and family, and more. There are video and audio inserts, PDF printables, excellent research information, and a very inspiring Flash enabled speech. This site requires Adobe Acrobat and Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): africa (180), african american (113), martin luther king (37)

In the Classroom

Share the video and/or audio clips on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Have students use this site for research projects. Challenge students to write a blog from King's perspective. Have students pretend that he could write a blog for people to read in the 2000s. What would he say? Has his dream come true?
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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We Shall Overcome - Historic Places of the Civil Rights Movement - National Park Service

Grades
4 to 12
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This is the National Park Service's guide to American sites that were important in the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 60s. It includes travel information as well as ...more
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This is the National Park Service's guide to American sites that were important in the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 60s. It includes travel information as well as background on the sites and their significance.

tag(s): africa (180), african american (113), civil rights (117)

In the Classroom

Divide students into cooperative learning groups to explore the site. Have them explore the site with the intention of picking three to research further. The text portions are challenging, so you should pair weaker readers with a partner as they research on this site. Have students pick the three the think are most significant or symbolic, which will be presented in poster form. Have students create online posters on paper or do it together as a class using a tool such as Web Poster Wizard (reviewed here) or PicLits (reviewed here). This activity will teach students about some of the major events of the Civil rights movements in a way that provides relief from lectures.

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2000 Census Data On-line - US Government

Grades
K to 12
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This provides the 2000 U.S. census information. There are links to news, data tools, a message from the President (Obama, at the time of this review), employment information, fact sheets,...more
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This provides the 2000 U.S. census information. There are links to news, data tools, a message from the President (Obama, at the time of this review), employment information, fact sheets, and more. General categories include "People & Households," "Business & Industry," "Geography," "Newsroom," and "Special Topics." Each category has several topics. This historical census data is ideal for comparison with other, more recent years or for students to make predictions for an upcoming census based on past trends.

tag(s): census (19), data (148), states (163)

In the Classroom

This data would be great material for a US government or history class. Teachers can find all sorts of demograhic information for use during lessons on the political make-up of the country as well as representative numbers, migration trends, etc. There is a LOT here so be sure to give yourself time to search through it all for what you need. Have students use this site to research specific topics and create multimedia projects with a partner. Have cooperative learning groups create online books using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here. Challenge groups to create online posters on paper or do it together as a class using a tool such as Web Poster Wizard (reviewed here) or PicLits (reviewed here).

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Americans and the Environment - National Humanities Center

Grades
4 to 12
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Created by the National Humanities Center, this collection of scholarly essays on Americans' relationship with the environment may be over the heads of most students. BUT teachers and...more
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Created by the National Humanities Center, this collection of scholarly essays on Americans' relationship with the environment may be over the heads of most students. BUT teachers and parents will find the subject matter fits nicely with most American History curricula, and the "guiding discussion" sections provide some new strategies and insights for teaching material that may have become too routine for students. If history (at any level) is your field, this one is worth a visit.

tag(s): conservation (127), ecology (135), environment (317)

In the Classroom

While this site is a little text-heavy, it is truly an excellent site for exploring the way the North American environment has been impacted by recent history. Select the time period that is appropriate to your unit, and introduce the site on the interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students explore the rest of the site on classroom computers. To ensure that they're doing more than skimming the text, Have students create online posters on paper or do it together as a class using a tool such as Web Poster Wizard (reviewed here) or PicLits (reviewed here).

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Michigan Kids! - Michigan.gov

Grades
2 to 6
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Find facts, play games, and learn about Michigan at this kid-friendly site. At first glance there doesn't appear to be much to the site, however; there is a great deal ...more
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Find facts, play games, and learn about Michigan at this kid-friendly site. At first glance there doesn't appear to be much to the site, however; there is a great deal of information found by exploring the links on the left-hand side of the home page. Games and internet safety information are available through the links on the main portion of the home page. The history link on the left includes many interesting and unique resources such as Tweets from "A Boy at Fort Mackinac: Diary of Harold Dunbar Corbusier 1883-1884" recounts adventures of a 10-year-old boy on Mackinac Island. Follow him on Twitter to learn what it was like to grow up on the island in the late 1800's. State symbols and facts are also available through a link on the left portion of the home page. Some information, such as the Getting to Know Michigan booklet, is available for easy printing in pdf format.

tag(s): michigan (3), states (163)

In the Classroom

Use an online tool such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here) to create a visual comparison of life in the late 1800's vs life today. Share the site with students to use as a resource for state research projects. Read how a bill becomes a law in Michigan and compare it to the law-making process in your state.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Indiana Info for Kids - State of Indiana

Grades
4 to 8
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This site offers facts and information about the Hoosier State for kids. Learn about Indiana's current governor, Mitch Daniels, such as his favorite flavor of ice cream. The Fun Facts...more
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This site offers facts and information about the Hoosier State for kids. Learn about Indiana's current governor, Mitch Daniels, such as his favorite flavor of ice cream. The Fun Facts portion includes trivia such as the official stone, river, and poem of Indiana. The state symbol's portion is the most comprehensive portion of the site offering answers to questions such as "What is the meaning behind the Indiana State Flag" and "What is the Indiana State Bird?"

tag(s): states (163)

In the Classroom

Have students create a simple online posters instead of traditional state reports using PicLits (reviewed here. Share this site with students to use when finding information for state research projects.

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About Illinois - State of Illinois

Grades
4 to 8
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If you are looking for facts and figures about the state of Illinois, then this is the site for you! Each set of links from this page takes the user ...more
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If you are looking for facts and figures about the state of Illinois, then this is the site for you! Each set of links from this page takes the user to specific categories of information such as agriculture, history, and economy. Most useful for teachers and students will be the History & Culture and State Symbols links. The History & Culture page includes a historical timeline of the state beginning in 1673 with the arrival of Louis Jolliet and Father Marquette in the state all the way through to the 2005 World Series win of the Chicago White Sox. Learn about state symbols such as the official state snack food and state amphibian while exploring the State Symbols portion of the site.

tag(s): chicago (5), illinois (9)

In the Classroom

Challenge your students to create a web exhibit collection about Illinois using a tool such as Bag The Web (reviewed here) to share all of the important links, information, and even brief descriptions. Share the site on your interactive whiteboard with your students to help them find portions useful for research, then allow them to explore on their own. Create a scavenger hunt for students to search the site to find facts about the state.

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Fire Prevention Week - National Fire Protection Association

Grades
2 to 12
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This collection, provided by the National Fire Protection Association is amazing. Here you will find fire prevention facts, products to help families stay safe, special materials for...more
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This collection, provided by the National Fire Protection Association is amazing. Here you will find fire prevention facts, products to help families stay safe, special materials for parents (and teachers, too), an online quiz for both students and families, and more! At the time of this review, the message for the year was "Protecting Your Families and Loved Ones From Fire." The approach, at the time of this review, is multimedia; in addition to the quiz, there are audio public service announcements, a blog, an upcoming webinar, and safety videos. For younger children, the familiar Sparky the Dog offers fun activities. Accompanying safety tip sheets benefit everyone, and a focus on high-risk populations assures you that everyone will have a fighting chance against fire.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): fire prevention (10), fire safety (11), homes (12)

In the Classroom

Try pair teaching after introducing the important facts available on this page. Have the first of a pair give the other student the facts and then have the second add to what the first has missed. Have your class make their own posters using this year's campaign logo. Have students create online posters on paper or do it together as a class using a tool such as Web Poster Wizard (reviewed here) or PicLits (reviewed here). Have your class create check sheets they can take home and do their own domestic assessment with. Ask if they know any members of the population that might be higher at risk for fires, and see if they can think of ways to make contact and help this group.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Fold Play - Alfa, Superspy, and Octave

Grades
1 to 10
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Turn your photographs into a three-dimensional wonder. Fold Play lets users upload their own photographs into existing templates, print, and then fold them into Kaleidocycles, books,...more
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Turn your photographs into a three-dimensional wonder. Fold Play lets users upload their own photographs into existing templates, print, and then fold them into Kaleidocycles, books, double-sided poly puzzles, or invertible cubes. The clear instructional tutorials and directions make the process painless. Some projects even include video instructions.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): crafts (40), creative writing (166), geometric shapes (163), origami (17), paper folding (5), photography (160), puzzles (208)

In the Classroom

Create clever "All About Me" projects while teaching mathematical principals about 2D and 3D figures, line, area, perimeter, and planes. Have students try out this site on individual computers, or as a learning center. The most effective way to use this site is to allow students to work on it in pairs so they can easily assist each other. The tutorials are ideal for an interactive whiteboard or projector because students can follow (and fold) along with the presentation. Have cooperative learning groups create podcasts demonstrating how to create 3D shapes with sites such as PodOmatic (reviewed here (reviewed here). Ask students to explain the folding process with geometric terms such as fractional parts, symmetry, faces, edges, rotations, lines, triangles, angles, and shapes. Foldplay turns math instruction into an art. Younger students may find some folding tasks a challenge, so be sure to provide a buddy for those with poor fine motor skills.

Make gifts for special occasions, such as to thank the school principal or cafeteria workers. Create unique ornaments using student photos. Decorate a "physics tree" or "author tree" using Fold Play ornaments made from images of the concepts or of books by that author.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

Comments

I was about to bookmark this site and use it for my Intermediate students. I would consider this to have inappropriate content for students. The site talks about unhealthy attraction to pornographic haiku and lesbianism.

Editor's Note: We investigated this comment and looked through all the Foldplay activities/templates. ALL areas are safe and school appropriate EXCEPT under "Links and Stuff." The value of the activities in the other areas makes this site worth keeping, even if you must monitor to avoid the "links" area. We have also contacted FoldPlay to explain teacher concerns.
Nina, TX, Grades: 3 - 5

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Zoho Show - ZOHO Corporation

Grades
K to 12
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Zoho Show is an online presentation and document creator tool. This program is somewhat simpler than PowerPoint, but runs on a similar format. Use this tool as you would PowerPoint...more
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Zoho Show is an online presentation and document creator tool. This program is somewhat simpler than PowerPoint, but runs on a similar format. Use this tool as you would PowerPoint with your students. It is very advantageous if you have assigned a project and students do not have access to PowerPoint at home. This can be accessed anywhere with no cost to the student, the parent, or you. Sharing and collaborating is also simple. Upload, edit, and save your documents easily.

tag(s): multimedia (57), slides (63)

In the Classroom

To use this site, you will need to create an account. You will need to navigate using onscreen instructions. There is a video tour of the features if you would like to view it, but it is just as fun and easy to play with the tool. Slide themes are limited, but the tools are simple and it is easy to publish to a URL that can be shared with everyone.

Use this tool to create presentations when students will need more than class time to finish. Have students make individual presentations. Instead of presenting on projector, have them share to the class wiki or within their zoho group to promote discussion and peer review. Assign a round-robin peer review so everyone gets some feedback.

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Quiz Revolution - QuizRevolution

Grades
2 to 12
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Create cool, professional looking quizzes and tests! Quiz Revolution offers a platform for developing online quizzes for your websites and blogs. Multimedia options offer the opportunity...more
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Create cool, professional looking quizzes and tests! Quiz Revolution offers a platform for developing online quizzes for your websites and blogs. Multimedia options offer the opportunity to personalize quizzes and to create a more interesting look for your pages. You can add text, images, video, and html as well as choosing from pre-made "skins." There is a "look and play" section where you will get an idea of this program's capabilities.

tag(s): assessment (99), quiz (85), quizzes (97)

In the Classroom

Create quizzes to use for pre- and post- lesson assessments. Post the quizzes to your class website or blog as assignments. Insert videos, photos, and text into your quiz to reinforce concepts before students take the test. Assign students to create a quiz on a current topic as a wrap-up to a unit. Share the quiz on your interactive whiteboard or projector (use it as a center, rather than a "whole-group" activity. Learning support teachers may want to have students work with a partner to create review quizzes they can use as study aids.

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The Metropolitan Museum of Art - MetMedia - Metropolitan Museum of Art

Grades
K to 12
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The Metropolitan Museum of Art offers visually rich and powerful interactives to learn about art, artists, and the world around us. The collection of interactives is organized into...more
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The Metropolitan Museum of Art offers visually rich and powerful interactives to learn about art, artists, and the world around us. The collection of interactives is organized into "channels" for different age groups (see the pulldown at right). Built around the world-class collections of the museum, the Met provides interactive activities on many topics, from the Knights of Central Park to Degas. Teachers can also find lesson plans related to the museum's collection by Selecting Educators from the "Learn" menu. In addition to the Interactive media, there are also videos and audio/podcasts to explore. See the KIdsZone audio for family-friendly listening connecting artworks to familiar stories. Free (optional) site membership allows you to collect "favorite" items in MyMet.

tag(s): museums (49)

In the Classroom

Explore by age group or topic. The interactives lend themselves to whole class viewing with a projector, small group use on an interactive whiteboard, or partner exploration on class computers or laptops. Base a hands-on art activity around the interactives for a multicultural tour or discussion about art styles around the world. Create a classroom art gallery of student art in time for Open House. Don't forget to take digital pictures for your "archives" and as examples for another year. Keep them on your class Gallery wiki or have students narrate them as the Met does using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Maryland Kids Page - Maryland Secretary of State

Grades
3 to 8
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Learn about the state of Maryland and its' laws, history, symbols, and more at this site presented by the Secretary of State of Maryland. The site is divided into sections ...more
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Learn about the state of Maryland and its' laws, history, symbols, and more at this site presented by the Secretary of State of Maryland. The site is divided into sections with sub-categories included on the home page. The history portion includes a great deal of information including a timeline of Maryland, women's history, Native American history, and African-American history, plus famous Marylanders. The government portion of site includes a very nice graphic demonstrating the bill-creation process. Learn all the state symbols such as the state song, bird, and even the state dog in the state symbols portion of the site. Be sure to visit the geography links and choose fun stuff to find lots of fun facts and state trivia.

tag(s): biographies (86), maryland (8), states (163)

In the Classroom

Challenge your students to go past PowerPoint and make an online presentation using Animoto (reviewed here) or another reviewed presentation tool from the TeachersFirst Edge. Share the page with the bill-creation process on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) with students and have them compare with other states' processes. Create a scavenger hunt including information from the site and have students explore the pages to find answers. Share the site with students as a resource for state research or famous American projects.

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Maine Secretary of State Kids' Page - Maine Secretary of State

Grades
3 to 8
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Learn all about Maine (for kids) without having to leave the room! The "All About Maine" portion of the site includes information about the state including famous people, a history...more
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Learn all about Maine (for kids) without having to leave the room! The "All About Maine" portion of the site includes information about the state including famous people, a history timeline, maps, state symbols, and more. Be sure to check out the "Tree of Facts" that includes information outlined in the image of a tree. Another useful link takes you to a list of children's books about Maine. The "Fun and Games" section includes several activities for kids including a symbols matching game, recipes, a coloring book, and more.

tag(s): maine (4), states (163)

In the Classroom

Challenge your students to go past PowerPoint and make an online presentation using Animoto (reviewed here) or another reviewed presentation tool from the TeachersFirst Edge. Review the list of books about Maine to use as resources for Guided Reading or class read-alouds. Share the site with students when preparing state research projects. Demonstrate the Tree of Facts and challenge students to create their own Tree of Facts for the state they are researching.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Louisiana Kids Page - Louisiana House of Representatives

Grades
3 to 6
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This easy to navigate site includes basic information for kids about the state of Louisiana. Click on each of the icons to go to a different place on the site ...more
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This easy to navigate site includes basic information for kids about the state of Louisiana. Click on each of the icons to go to a different place on the site such as state symbols, learning about how a bill becomes a law, activity and coloring books/pages, and a quiz on state facts. Note: completing the quiz online requires entering your institution (school) name and email address before answers can be submitted. Rather than using your personal or professional email, create a FREE gmail account. Activity book pages can all be easily printed by using the print portion of your toolbar.

tag(s): branches of government (48), louisiana (11), states (163)

In the Classroom

Share the portion of the site on How a Bill Becomes a Law on your interactive whiteboard and compare to your state's law-making procedures. Have your students create an online "scrapbook" on states using Smilebox (reviewed here). Allow students to explore the site to gather information for state research projects.

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Kentucky Secretary of State Kids' Website - Kentucky Secretary of State

Grades
3 to 6
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Find interesting facts and information about the state of Kentucky at this site created for kids. The site is divided into several portions including Kentucky Government, Kentucky Civics...more
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Find interesting facts and information about the state of Kentucky at this site created for kids. The site is divided into several portions including Kentucky Government, Kentucky Civics for Kids, Games, and more. Each section is broken into smaller categories to make finding information easier. Choose "All About Kentucky" to find symbols, geography, a history timeline, places, business and industry, and Kentucky facts and fun. The government page includes an explanation of the state constitution, framework, and information about elected officials. Teachers from all states may find the civics glossary useful that is located in the civics section of the site.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): branches of government (48), states (163)

In the Classroom

Create a scavenger hunt including information from the site for students to complete while exploring the site. Have your students create an online "scrapbook" on each of the states using Smilebox (reviewed here). Print and use activities from this site with students.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Kansas Kids - Kansas Secretary of State

Grades
3 to 6
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Explore and learn about Kansas with this bright, kid-friendly website. Click on the flower icons to learn about the state with printable activities. Activities include a math skills...more
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Explore and learn about Kansas with this bright, kid-friendly website. Click on the flower icons to learn about the state with printable activities. Activities include a math skills quiz, Kansas information true/false, and an activity matching hometowns to famous Kansans. Be sure to visit the "Lets Color" link for coloring pages that include facts and information about the state that can be easily printed and copied. The car icon sends you to the "Lets Travel" portion of the site with links to interesting places to visit in the state including the Eisenhower Museum, the Governor's Mansion, and the Kansas State Fair. Teachers, be sure to visit the teachers and parents portion of the site. It is a bit hidden, so search on the bottom left-hand portion of the home page for the words "Teachers and Parents". Click on the link to find a printable Kansas Fun Book, Kansas at a Glance, and much more.

tag(s): biographies (86), states (163)

In the Classroom

Have your students create an online "scrapbook" on states using Smilebox (reviewed here) and including information found on the site. Print out coloring pages and quizzes from the site for students. Share this site with students when doing research for state projects or famous Americans.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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