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Visual Dictionary Online - Merriam-Webster and QA International

Grades
3 to 12
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Be sure to save this site in your favorites for your visual learners! As its name implies, this dictionary 'defines' the word a student types by providing a detailed, labeled ...more
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Be sure to save this site in your favorites for your visual learners! As its name implies, this dictionary 'defines' the word a student types by providing a detailed, labeled graphic. In 15 category themes, there are over 6000 images and 20,000 definitions available. Use the index for easy access to the words you need locate. Once the image is seen, click on the audio button to hear the correct pronunciation. Scroll down the page to find words and phrases that relate to the word being investigated. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): images (266)

In the Classroom

Science teachers will love this site. Most of the 15 categories revolve around science terminology that benefit from images. ESL and learning support students who have difficulty with verbal definitions will also find this resource helpful. Speech and Language teachers can use the Clothing and Articles categories to build student vocabulary. Use your whiteboard alongside your science text to clarify terms. Encourage students to study for tests by perusing this site.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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EcoKids - Earth Day Canada

Grades
K to 8
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This clever, creative, and entertaining resource is a must for elementary science classroom! Click to enter the Room 26: Kids or the Teachers' Lounge. Kids from all over...more
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This clever, creative, and entertaining resource is a must for elementary science classroom! Click to enter the Room 26: Kids or the Teachers' Lounge. Kids from all over the world can learn oodles from this Canadian ecology site. Teachers will find a trove of information and instructional materials as well. You will appreciate the Earth Day activities and information. There are also numerous educational interactives highlighting the food chain, bugs, animal adaptations, acid rain, transportation, and other topics. Students can participate in interactive stories; play and learn with more than 50 ecology-based on-line games and activities; learn about a variety of topics including wildlife, energy, and environment issues; and print out word games or coloring sheets.

Be aware: recently, this site started to offer certain features of the Teacher's Lounge to "members only." Membership is FREE, but does require an email address. The link for students does NOT require membership to access the interactives, information, or printables. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): acid rain (5), earth (228), earth day (112), ecology (135), transportation (40)

In the Classroom

There is SO much to look at and explore, so browse through the offerings, create a plan for your students based on their age and ability level, then mark the site as a favorite on classroom computers. Upper elementary students can use it as an independent learning center. Younger children may need help with some of the text, so consider using an interactive whiteboard or projector and exploring the activities as a class. Click on "Downloads" on the bottom left to find printables, including coloring sheets of Canadian wildlife and various ecology-related worksheets and lesson plans. Click on the 'games and activities' tab and use the interactive whiteboard or projector for whole class eco-minded fun. ESL and ELL teachers, don't miss the 'teacher' section for a cache of activities written for your ELL/ESL students. Interested students will use this one for hours, so some directions will be important for classroom use.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Census in Schools - U.S. Census Bureau

Grades
4 to 10
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This site, created especially for students who need to understand information collected during the census (up to, and including the year 2000), offers five main areas: State Facts for...more
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This site, created especially for students who need to understand information collected during the census (up to, and including the year 2000), offers five main areas: State Facts for Students, Program Overview, Teaching Materials (K-adult), Reference Materials, and Highlights. The state pages include a generalized lesson plan and pertinent information for each state. The City map section under reference materials is especially interesting as it shows city growth from 1790 to 2000. The teaching materials section includes activities and downloadable, printable census kits for classroom use from kindergarten students to adults.

tag(s): census (19), maps (287), states (162)

In the Classroom

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. Use this page when studying various states; students can make a quick comparison between targeted states with the facts ready to read all on one or two pages. If you teach data analysis and graphing in your math class, this data provides real world information for students to use in math exercises, spreadsheets, and graphs. You could even use it in Google Docs spreadsheets (reviewed here). If you have ESL and ELL students, check out the special ESL pages found under the teaching materials section. The easy to read materials include glossaries, exercises, and excellent maps, perfect for geography lessons.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Just Crosswords - CleverMedia

Grades
2 to 12
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The name says it all--this site is just crosswords, created by you or your students. Cool features: 1. You can customize a crossword puzzle around any subject. 2. Once ...more
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The name says it all--this site is just crosswords, created by you or your students. Cool features: 1. You can customize a crossword puzzle around any subject. 2. Once created, you can link it to you website or blog. 3. You can bookmark it, so that you, your students or their parents can return to it whenever they choose. 4. You can email your puzzle to anyone in the world. 5. Puzzles can be worked online, and there is even a stopwatch tell you how long it takes to complete it. (Warning: Changing an answer is cumbersome.) 6. Explore the archive to find previously made puzzles in standard or crozzle format.

Be Aware: You can't easily print your puzzle into a sleek format without all the website clutter. This site does require Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): puzzles (208), spelling (168), vocabulary (323)

In the Classroom

Let your imagination run wild. Spelling words, content vocabulary words, or holiday words are obvious uses of this tool. Link puzzles to your teacher's site, or your school's site. Have students create puzzles to exchange with classmates. Create a crossword puzzle booklet to be given to loved ones (especially aging loved ones) as a holiday gift.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Bookmaking with Kids - Cathy Miranker and Susie Peyton

Grades
K to 12
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You will want to bookmark and follow this blog. Always adding ideas, this site offers many ways to make a book for any age student. Not only ideas, read the ...more
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You will want to bookmark and follow this blog. Always adding ideas, this site offers many ways to make a book for any age student. Not only ideas, read the extensive blog material to learn about author presentations and how schools incorporated those visits into making books. The creators say this site is part scrapbook and notebook, so click on the categories frequently to see the new content.

Teachers who desire professional development and fresh ideas will want to include this site in their repertoire.

In the Classroom

Use this site to help ANY grade level create original books. Have students work with a partner to create a book together. With older students, challenge them to create a book as a culminating project for a research assignment. Have younger students create books at the beginning of the year to introduce themselves to the class. The possibilities are endless at this creative site! Use some of the ideas to make online books using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here.

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Fingerplays for Young Children - Songs for Teaching

Grades
K to 3
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This subsection of the Songs for Teaching site has excellent chants and other childhood favorite songs which get children moving, speaking, and rhyming. Words to the fingerplays and...more
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This subsection of the Songs for Teaching site has excellent chants and other childhood favorite songs which get children moving, speaking, and rhyming. Words to the fingerplays and songs are copyable, and many contain Quicktime sound excerpt files as well (enough to get you going with the song, though not the complete song). A few even have pictures of someone going through the motions of the song or rhyme. A link to Songs for Early Childhood allows you to see even more action songs. There are even songs to go with class content, such as Martin Luther King, Jr. Your kinesthetic learners will retain the concepts in these songs. ESL, ELL, and speech/language students will respond to the music; it aids with articulation, accent development, and memory. This site requires Quicktime. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): plays (37), preK (281), rhymes (33), songs (52)

In the Classroom

Share this link on your teacher web page and/or in a parent newsletter so that parents can use it at home too! Don't forget to turn up your speakers if you are using the music in class. If your class responds very well to using songs, you might try writing lyrics together about something you are studying -- using one of these familiar tunes.

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Teach Children ESL: Games - Teach Children ESL

Grades
K to 3
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This site has many games available for downloading including card games, board games, and Valentine's Day bingo. Children learn vocabulary and have fun while manipulating the various...more
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This site has many games available for downloading including card games, board games, and Valentine's Day bingo. Children learn vocabulary and have fun while manipulating the various versions of memory cards, Go Fish, and other traditional children's past times. Downloads include colorfully illustrated cards and game parts as well as instructions. Links include more goodies: worksheets, songs, and flashcards. At certain times of the day this site can be slow in loading. This site requires Adobe Acrobat. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): cross cultural understanding (115)

In the Classroom

Download the games and laminate the materials or send them home for parents and children to do together. Speech and language teachers as well as ESL/ELL teachers will love the free games-to-go!
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Leo Loves to Spell - Scholastic

Grades
K to 2
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Come along with Leo to practice spelling in various locations. There are twelve locations to choose from (i.e. a firehouse, restaurant, farm, aquarium, zoo, airport, and others). Once...more
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Come along with Leo to practice spelling in various locations. There are twelve locations to choose from (i.e. a firehouse, restaurant, farm, aquarium, zoo, airport, and others). Once at the location, students are provided with audio instructions to drag and drop upper and lower case letters into a box. The challenge is to drag and drop the same letters that are in the word under the box. As students drag and drop the letters, audio encouragement and information is provided. For example, they say the letter aloud and the word aloud to help students make connections. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): spelling (168)

In the Classroom

Share this site on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students explore it on individual computers. This site is ideal for emergent readers, since the letters and words are read aloud. Young ESL, ELL, and special education students would also benefit from the practice available at this site. Be sure to save this site in your favorites and list this link on your class website.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Fast Forward Math - Harcourt School Publishers

Grades
1 to 5
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Search a simple dictionary of math terms by word or using a guided search. There are six levels of difficulty. New vocabulary words are included at each level. Many terms ...more
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Search a simple dictionary of math terms by word or using a guided search. There are six levels of difficulty. New vocabulary words are included at each level. Many terms use Flash to explain the term. Click on the sound icon to hear the dictionary term or definition aloud for differentiated learning. The search option includes the entire site (all subject areas), not just math. This site requires Flash. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): charts and graphs (195)

In the Classroom

Students can be given a term or terms to review, learn to pronounce, and represent to classmates in another way. Students can present to small groups or the entire class. Groups of students can be given related terms that they use to build a collaborative presentation of the terms in action. Use this site to help students better understand terminology. Learning Support teachers will want to offer this handy reference for students who forget terms as soon as the chapter test is over. Be sure to list this link on your class website so students can access it both in and out of the classroom.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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TeachersFirst Resources on Autism Spectrum Disorders and Asperger's - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This collection of reviewed resources will help you to better understand these students with special challenges and find strategies for working with them in your classroom. ...more
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This collection of reviewed resources will help you to better understand these students with special challenges and find strategies for working with them in your classroom.

tag(s): aspergers (6), autism (22), preK (281)

In the Classroom

Share this collection with parents and colleagues using the "email this" link.

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Mashable: 50+ Places to Buy Groceries Online - Sean P. Aune

Grades
4 to 12
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Looking for a way to teach real shopping lessons without actually going to a store? This blog post includes links to online grocery shopping from all over the U.S. Since ...more
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Looking for a way to teach real shopping lessons without actually going to a store? This blog post includes links to online grocery shopping from all over the U.S. Since the stores are in business to make money they will, of course, include advertisements on their sites. Teachers will want to discuss advertising links and why students should avoid them to stay on task.

In the Classroom

Use these virtual stores to teach real-world lessons in math, FCS, ESL, ELL, and economics lessons. Special Ed teachers may also want to use these sites to help students with life skills. Have students compare pricing in online venues vs. bricks-and-mortar stores. Use the pricing to teach unit pricing, comparison shopping, percent, and more.

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Fable Library - Fable Vision

Grades
2 to 6
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This site includes online stories, short downloadable books, a story for older children, and even a spot for young writers to create their own fables. One story, The Adventures of ...more
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This site includes online stories, short downloadable books, a story for older children, and even a spot for young writers to create their own fables. One story, The Adventures of Sticky Burr, is a comic, with continually updated, new episodes. Readers can see fables that other children have contributed by clicking on "Create Your Own." ESL, ELL, and emergent readers may find reading the short illustrated segments offered at this site less of a challenge than reading a textbook or hard copy book. NOTE: the actual fonts used in some of the books may be difficult for some younger children to read. Preview with this thought in mind before assigning a fable to a student to read alone. This site requires Flash. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): comics and cartoons (74), folktales (65)

In the Classroom

Offer young readers the option of doing "outside" reading online to encourage them to read in a variety of formats, including both the fables and downloadable books. Look at one of the fables with your class on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students take turns reading the story aloud to the class. Share models of the "student created" stories and then challenge your students to write their own fable (either to share with the class or submit to the site). Be sure to be aware of your school's Acceptable Use Policy on sharing or submitting what the students have written to the website. Obtain parental permission before submitting any work.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Internet Polyglot - Internet Polyglot

Grades
7 to 12
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Internet Polyglot offers language lessons for many languages, available both with the translation from English and also from Spanish. The English lessons also include items for "regular"...more
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Internet Polyglot offers language lessons for many languages, available both with the translation from English and also from Spanish. The English lessons also include items for "regular" English classes, such as SAT words. A "widget" to embed lessons in your web site or wiki is also available. You can even share many of the lessons on mobile devices, such as cell phones. Some of the languages include Spanish, Greek, Hebrew, Japanese, German, Italian, Arabic, Chinese, French, Latin, Russian, Dutch, Portuguese, and numerous others. You can choose lessons to translate to and from any language (for example, Hebrew to Dutch or Japanese to Russian). Everything on the site is free, and there are many lessons for each language, categorized by usage. Most of the lessons start by having students learn vocabulary words: seeing them frequently on online-style pictorial flash cards, hearing them spoken, and then completing review activities using them. In addition to traditional language categories, students can also collect and create their own lessons, modifying lessons of others, and sharing what their friends are using. The site offers a free registration and log in which allows you to keep score results and create and modify your own materials. This site does have some unobtrusive advertisements.

tag(s): arab (18), arabic (20), chinese (48), french (88), german (64), greek (41), hebrew (14), italian (33), japan (61), japanese (42), latin (22), spanish (108), vocabulary (323)

In the Classroom

Spanish speaking ESL or ELL and foreign language students will find this site useful as the language lessons proceed from a Spanish language base. Foreign language teachers can offer this site to their students as a way to review and learn new vocabulary on certain topics. This is a great site for ESL and ELL students to collect vocabulary that they need to remember, with registration. Check school policies on site memberships for students before allowing them to join. If you or your students are adventurous, you can create and embed activities on your class wiki or web page.

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TESL/TEFL/TESOL/ESL/EFL/ESOL Links - ITESLJ

Grades
1 to 12
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This compilation of sites is a standard source for ESL and ELL teachers and contains links to whatever type of vocabulary enrichment activity you might be looking for. Although this...more
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This compilation of sites is a standard source for ESL and ELL teachers and contains links to whatever type of vocabulary enrichment activity you might be looking for. Although this site is "plain vanilla" and not high-tech, it has been around for a long time and offers a comprehensive list of sites to use with ESL and ELL students. English/language arts teachers will also find the vocabulary development options helpful for any student, especially those who may need extra learning support.

Be sure to check out "What's New" for recent additions. Go to "Main Page" and try the search box; it's a good place to try to find the links you remember from awhile back but have lost track of.

tag(s): holidays (147), idioms (44), sight words (37), vocabulary (323)

In the Classroom

Provide this link on your class website. Use this site for vocabulary ideas with your ESL and ELL students AND in your world language classes or mainstream language arts classes. The variety at this site offers something for every classroom learning English or another language.

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Prompts - Creativity-Portal.com

Grades
2 to 12
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This site offers writing prompts of many types, from written prompts to line drawings, to photographs, from story starters to articles on the imagination. With plenty of prompts available...more
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This site offers writing prompts of many types, from written prompts to line drawings, to photographs, from story starters to articles on the imagination. With plenty of prompts available at your fingertips, teachers will find inspirational starters in a form which will appeal to all types of students.

There is a submission option at this site. You are able to submit articles or projects, suggest websites with FREE learning content, creativity journey blogs, or inspiring success stories. Before you submit any students' work, be sure to check with your school's Acceptable Use Policy and always get parental permission.

tag(s): drawing (78), journals (21), writing (359), writing prompts (92)

In the Classroom

Use these writing prompts with your ESL or ELL students to get them to incorporate new vocabulary into a written piece. Share the on your teacher web page for all students to use as starters for blog writing or journaling. Have students share their own ideas of writing prompts, drawings, and photos that they feel may help others start writing. Submit students' work and ideas, after the proper precautions have been taken.

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Learn English with Pictures and Audio - Jacob Richman

Grades
2 to 12
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This site offers a pronouncing picture dictionary arranged alphabetically. Students can click on letters of the alphabet to see a selection of pictures and hear the words pronounced....more
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This site offers a pronouncing picture dictionary arranged alphabetically. Students can click on letters of the alphabet to see a selection of pictures and hear the words pronounced. They can also select "Index" which leads to an entire listing (34 total lists) of the words offered. The site continues to add new content, including videos for learning English!

tag(s): sight words (37), vocabulary (323)

In the Classroom

Share this link from your class website for ESL and ELL students to use the picture/pronouncing dictionary both in and out of the classroom. Try the videos on a classroom computer or projector with a small group. Teachers may enjoy using the print option for creating paper copies of the target word lists. ESL/ELL teachers can also assign specific lists to students so they can work individually on pronouncing and understanding the words.

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Beeline TV - Beeline Software Express

Grades
1 to 12
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This online TV resource offers instant streaming of TV news, sports, music, and cultural programs from up to 400 different countries in many languages. With a Windows Media Player or...more
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This online TV resource offers instant streaming of TV news, sports, music, and cultural programs from up to 400 different countries in many languages. With a Windows Media Player or other player (downloading directions given at the site), teachers can have television on classroom computers instantly. Foreign language teachers can show programs featuring their language group. English language TV comes from the U.S. and the U.K. Some examples of "TV" places include Dubai, France, Jordan, Kuwait, Japan, Korea, China, Poland, Denmark, Russia, and countless others.

Be sure to preview stations and programs to be certain the offerings are appropriate for your classrooms and student ages. International students will enjoy the opportunity to check out news and other events from their original countries. Some of the European TV sites offer bilingual programming; English language summaries often accompany the news in many languages.

tag(s): news (261), sports (97)

In the Classroom

Add interest to a foreign language class by checking out the news in your target language using this site. Supplement language study with cultural opportunities by using the music sites. During major world events, compare news coverage from different English-speaking sites to see the different angles provided from different cultures. As you read stories or study customs from other lands, use this site on a projector or interactive whiteboard to share a taste of the world with your elementary students. If your school has a student handbook or special supplement for international students, recommend this site as a way to check the news and cultural happenings from their first countries. All students will enjoy coverage of international sporting events.

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Faithful John - Kidoons

Grades
K to 3
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This simple site provides an interactive story of "Faithful John." You may read the story in text or interactive (Flash) format. Although there is a link for a game, this ...more
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This simple site provides an interactive story of "Faithful John." You may read the story in text or interactive (Flash) format. Although there is a link for a game, this site was under construction at the time of this review. The interactive (Flash) story provides audio, so even early readers and ESL or ELL students can participate in reading the story (with headsets, of course). The audio can be turned OFF. The story includes some animated pictures. Follow the arrows to go to the next page. There are also Play and Stop buttons.

Be aware that this site does include some advertisements. The site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): air (163), folktales (65)

In the Classroom

Share this fairy tale on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Turn down the volume (or turn it off), and have students take turns reading the pages to the class. Challenge your students to write new endings for the story. Use the story to teach students about plot, characters, conflict, setting, and other key elements in a story. Create a story map on your interactive whiteboard, pausing to switch between the interactive version and your story map as the story plays aloud!
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Real Princess - Kidoons

Grades
K to 3
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This simple site provides an interactive story of the "Real Princess." You may read the interactive story or play a simple game (the game is fun, but not educational). The ...more
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This simple site provides an interactive story of the "Real Princess." You may read the interactive story or play a simple game (the game is fun, but not educational). The story provides audio, so even early readers and ESL or ELL students can participate in reading the story (with headsets, of course). All of the text is written and available in audio, for both your visual and auditory learners. The audio can be turned OFF. The story includes some animated pictures.

Be aware that this site does include some appropriate advertisements. To avoid seeing the advertisements, you may click Full Screen to view the story. The site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): air (163), folktales (65), interactive stories (32)

In the Classroom

Share this story on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Turn down the volume, and have students take turns reading the pages to the class. Challenge your students to write a new ending for the story. Create a story map on your interactive whiteboard, pausing to switch between the interactive version and your story map as the story plays aloud!
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Little Red Riding Hood - Kidoons Network

Grades
K to 3
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This interactive site provides the story of the "Little Red Riding Hood." You may read the story or play a simple game (the game is fun, dress-up, but not necessarily ...more
Here is the direct link to share this resource review. Feel free to copy and paste this URL into an email or place it on your web page or blog so others can read this TeachersFirst review:

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This interactive site provides the story of the "Little Red Riding Hood." You may read the story or play a simple game (the game is fun, dress-up, but not necessarily educational). This is a text-only story, so no audio is provided. The story does include some entertaining pictures.

Be aware that this site does include some appropriate advertisements. Some of the activities at this site require Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): air (163), folktales (65), interactive stories (32)

In the Classroom

Share this online fairy tale on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Have your students take turns reading the pages to the class. Challenge your students to write a new ending for the story. Create a story map on your interactive whiteboard, pausing to switch between the interactive version and your story map as the story plays aloud!
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

Add your comments below (available only to members) | Become a Member

Rating (click star to set rating):

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You must be registered and logged in to add items to your favorites.
Use the form at the top of the page to log in, or click here to join TeachersFirst (it's free!).

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