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Kaizena - Kaizena

Grades
1 to 12
13 Favorites 0  Comments
   
Do you wish you had enough time in your schedule for one-on-one personalized writing conferences with your students or writers you know? Kaizena (previously 121Writing) can make that...more
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Do you wish you had enough time in your schedule for one-on-one personalized writing conferences with your students or writers you know? Kaizena (previously 121Writing) can make that dream a reality. Kaizena allows you to give feedback on writing via an audio recording. Writers often have difficulty reading the margin notes from teachers or other readers, or they need more explanation. An audio recording of the feedback provides a personalized experience to enhance the writing process. Kaizena works best by synching with your Google Drive account. There is an option at the bottom of the page to sign up by sending in your name and email address. However, this can take a while, so plan ahead! Sign in with your Google account to watch a helpful video and learn how to connect to your Google Drive account or school Google Apps account.

Start by highlighting a text selection, hit record, and provide your feedback. Writers will be able to listen to your feedback and revise or edit their writing as though you were face to face. Tag your highlighted text with keywords that can be tracked in a mastery-based rubric. You could tag conventional errors, mistakes, or selections that are amazing. Verbal feedback can be played on an iPad so students can listen in the best learning environment to meet their needs. Writers will progress as you enhance the writing process with explicit audio feedback. Kaizena can enhance feedback for written work for any school subject or even outside of school.

tag(s): editing (71), process writing (47), writing (368)

In the Classroom

Editing and revising are better with audio feedback. Provide explicit details to improve student performance. Students can record peer edits and share audio recordings with classmates. Classroom time is more efficient and effective when students can listen to your feedback before meeting face to face. Have students highlight passages of text and provide their reflections on the selection. World language classes can speak text or respond to questions in their new language. Learning support students will better understand audio feedback on their writing than detailed comments written in "teacher-ese." This is a great tool for students to highlight poetry and record their thoughts and feelings on the text. Students can highlight and record their thought process as they solve math word problems. Highlight and record opinions on current event articles. Highlight an entire passage of text to model reading fluency. Students can listen and read along with the recording to help with phrasing and expression. Highlight text and model fluency for ESL/ELL students. Highlight assessment questions or text for lower-level readers to provide a level playing field in the classroom. Challenge students to provide audio feedback to their peers on passages where they would like to know more, questions they have as readers, and positive feedback on passages they enjoy.

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QuizSlides - London South Bank University

Grades
3 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
   
Create your own slides for a quiz using PowerPoint or PDF. Upload them to this site to be shared via your personal url or link to any website. Create a ...more
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Create your own slides for a quiz using PowerPoint or PDF. Upload them to this site to be shared via your personal url or link to any website. Create a quiz including a title and end slide. Each question should include four possible choices for an answer with one correct response. Up to 40 questions can be posted. Take the test yourself to identify correct responses; then the quiz is ready to share. Options include quizzes for anonymous users with an "answer until right" format or exam mode where you identify yourself at the start and are given points based on responses. The introduction video is hosted on YouTube. If YouTube is blocked at your school, be sure to view the video at home for more instruction about how to use this site.

tag(s): quiz (88), quizzes (102), slides (65), test prep (96)

In the Classroom

Create quizzes for review before tests. Share the link with students to use at home. Have students create their own PowerPoint quizzes and upload for sharing with other class members. Use as a pre-test at the start of a chapter or unit. Identify misconceptions or basic knowledge to help determine instruction. Identify interests of students at the start of the school year by asking quiz questions. Do the questions as a whole-class activity on your projector or interactive whiteboard with students contributing the portions of knowledge they do know toward solving the question. Using teamwork and thinking aloud can often help the group reach a conclusion that no single member could do alone. Learning support teachers can have small groups create review quizzes as a way of studying without realizing it!

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OK2Ask'®: Specialized for Special Needs July 2013 - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
This recording of an OK2Ask online professional development session from July 2013, opens in Adobe Connect. Specialized for Special Needs: Ideas and tools for Learning Support, Speech/language,...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional development session from July 2013, opens in Adobe Connect. Specialized for Special Needs: Ideas and tools for Learning Support, Speech/language, Emotional Support, and More! Learn how to adapt your teaching for your students' special needs using TeachersFirst resources. Participants will view and explore tools to help students needing emotional support, learning support, speech/language support, autistic support, ESL/ELL assistance, and more. Find resources that promote organization, focus, and differentiated learning. Use exploration time to discover and discuss how selected resources can be utilized in your classroom.

As a result of this session and through individual follow-up, teachers will: Gather ideas by exploring 6 -10 specialized resources on TeachersFirst; Explore and practice with selected resources; Investigate and discuss lesson ideas offered in reviews and by other participants; List and discuss other curriculum related projects or activities that could be done using the resources in the teacher's own teaching situation; and (Follow-up) Implement one of the provided resources into an upcoming teaching unit or lesson. Applicable NETS-T standards (2008)*: 1a, b, c; 2a, b, c, d; 3b, c, d; 4c * The text of these standards is copyrighted. Please read the full text at ISTE's NETS-T page.

tag(s): learning disability (14), speech (92)

In the Classroom

Looking for new strategies to use with your learning support, ESL/ELL students, emotional support, speech/language students, autistic support, and other specialized needs? View this webinar for some excellent new ideas. Invite other teachers to view the webinar with you in your class or the computer lab. Take a look at the resource page full of GREAT ideas! Learn more about OK2Ask and upcoming sessions here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Newsela - Matthew Gross

Grades
2 to 12
15 Favorites 1  Comments
Newsela is a data base of current events stories tailor-made for classroom use. Indexed by broad theme (e.g. War and Peace, Arts, Science, Health, Law, Money), stories are both student-friendly...more
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Newsela is a data base of current events stories tailor-made for classroom use. Indexed by broad theme (e.g. War and Peace, Arts, Science, Health, Law, Money), stories are both student-friendly and can be accessed in different formats by reading level. Use Newsela to differentiate nonfiction reading. Newspaper writers rewrite a story four times for a total of five Lexile levels per story. Many stories also have embedded, Common Core aligned quizzes that conform to the reading levels for checking comprehension. In addtion, each article has a writing prompt which is also designed to assess reading comprehension. An account is required to use Newsela, both for teachers and for students, but students sign up using a teacher or parent provided code rather than an email address. Teachers can create classes and assign reading-level specific articles to individual students, or download printable PDF copies of the article in any of its reading-level versions. There is an upgraded fee-based Pro Version which allows teachers or administrators to track reading progress, but most of the features are free and there is no advertising.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): differentiation (48), guided reading (48), independent reading (130), news (261), reading comprehension (124)

In the Classroom

Achieve two goals here: help students improve their reading comprehension and keep them current with what is happening in our nation and the world. When assigning articles, choose to have the class read at one reading level, or choose individuals and set the reading level for them. There are five categories from which to choose. You may want to set up different articles at different learning stations on the computers in your room. Have the students rotate daily through the stations, completing one or two a day until they have completed all five articles. Since Newsela is cloud based, even absent students can complete the missed work easily. Teachers of gifted students can use this site to accelerate or enrich reading for students. Find each students individual levels for reading nonfiction. Teachers of Learning Support and ELL students will love this alternate way for their students to meet current events requirements.

Comments

This is an excellent site and allows differentiation while everyone is reading the same text. Renee, NC, Grades: 0 - 5

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750 Words - Buster Benson

Grades
4 to 12
3 Favorites 0  Comments
 
750 Words is a private place to write your thoughts, clear your head, scrawl a rant, or brainstorm ideas. You might ask yourself, why not just blog? Blogs have a ...more
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750 Words is a private place to write your thoughts, clear your head, scrawl a rant, or brainstorm ideas. You might ask yourself, why not just blog? Blogs have a "keep private" button, and if you forget to click it who knows who will be reading your most private thoughts. This program is based on the idea that getting your thoughts on (digital) paper every morning can clear your head, focus your ideas, and organize and energize you for the rest of the day. Inspired by the book The Artist's Way, and its hand-written "Morning Pages" exercise, the creator of this program converted that exercise to our 21st century tools. If you care about such things, there is also a point system where one can compare constancy of writing and words written with others.

tag(s): brainstorming (25), gamification (81), journals (22), process writing (47), writers workshop (33)

In the Classroom

To write daily is a good idea for students. It helps them clarify their thoughts and questions, and get in touch with their feelings. 750 Words would be perfect for any writing program or with gifted students who often feel very strongly about fairness and/or world issues well beyond their years. Students can get their thoughts and ideas written down without having to worry about a grade or someone chancing upon their writings in a school notebook. Here's an idea for any grade level. Have your students do free writes (stream of conscientiousness writing) starting with 5 minutes or more a day. Ask students to count their words daily when time is up, always trying to increase the word count. After a couple of weeks have them use 750 Words and complete the stream of writing on a computer or mobile device. (This shouldn't slow many of them down since most are quick at texting!). After the first day, and again after the second week, using 750 Words have a class discussion about which format they like better and why. Use a backchannel program like Meetings.io reviewed here, or Today's Meet, reviewed here, for the class discussion. Using one of these programs ensures that even your shy students have a chance to say what they think about 750 Words. Challenge your students to complete the 750 words at home. They can earn points, and you know how competition can inspire some of them! Resource students and ESL/ELL students could increase their writing skills and fluency by keeping an online, private journal daily with 750 Words. Emotional support, autistic support, or alternative ed students may find this private space to work out feelings very therapeutic.

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The Question Generator - Department of Education, Victoria

Grades
1 to 12
5 Favorites 0  Comments
  
The Question Generator does just what its title says. Click on the "spin" button and question starters will appear for both closed and open ended questions. Closed questions are valuable...more
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The Question Generator does just what its title says. Click on the "spin" button and question starters will appear for both closed and open ended questions. Closed questions are valuable for acquiring background information on a topic. Open ended questions are valuable for research and discussions. Find it easy to create both at the Question Generator! View the introduction video to learn more about using this tool.

tag(s): questioning (34), writing prompts (94)

In the Classroom

Use the Question Generator along with any fiction or nonfiction reading to help your students think more deeply. Use as a starting point in research projects. With the Common Core State Standards and their focus on close reading, rigor, and critical thinking, this is the perfect tool to use to make sure you are challenging your students. Introduce students to this tool when they need to create essential questions for their research, or when developing questions for their literature circle group. Learning support students can gain practice thinking beyond the "facts" by creating and talking through their own questions. Before you start, generate a list of key words from the unit: terms such as arachnids or homeostasis or names of historic figures, so they can then insert the terms into the question starters from the generator. Your interactive whiteboard or projector would be an ideal place to generate some questions together before turning students loose to generate some of their own. Be sure to record/save the list of questions you create on a class wiki or blog-- or even on old fashioned butcher paper as students go off to resolve them. Revisit the questions late in the unit to see which are still unresolved. Ask the class which question would make the best essay question on the final "test." Maybe allow them to choose their own? In world language classes, these simple questions could lead to practice with dialog.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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ForAllRubrics - ForAllSchools

Grades
K to 12
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Data drives instruction. Managing data drives you crazy. This free tool will assess students, manage data, and analyze results to make your instruction better. Easily create rubrics....more
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Data drives instruction. Managing data drives you crazy. This free tool will assess students, manage data, and analyze results to make your instruction better. Easily create rubrics. Describe your indicators and include standards. Find rubrics in the library to copy and make your own. Print rubrics, save as a PDF, or download as a spreadsheet. Share your rubrics in the library for others to access. Does breaking down data make you break down? Analyze assessment results by individual students, class, item analysis, or standards. Email students and their families the results or download rubrics to print. Add comments to rubrics for qualitative analysis. Award badges (stickers) to reward students and provide positive feedback. An accompanying, free iPad app allows you to collect data on the fly and add it to your account. The demonstration video requires Flash, the remainder of the site does not.

tag(s): assessment (113), gamification (81), rubrics (32)

In the Classroom

Use the data provided to analyze students to differentiate instruction. Provide students and families the opportunity to view data online. Motivate students to learn by awarding badges. Students can analyze their own data to monitor progress. Use the data for progress reports and parent/teacher conferences. Use the data provided to analyze your instruction to make sure standards are being met and instruction is tailored for students' individual needs.

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The Literacy Shed - Rob Smith

Grades
K to 12
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Find hundreds of ideas for using the visual resources of film, animation, photographs and picture books for teaching literacy. Each "shed" has a theme: The Mystery Shed, The Video Game...more
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Find hundreds of ideas for using the visual resources of film, animation, photographs and picture books for teaching literacy. Each "shed" has a theme: The Mystery Shed, The Video Game Shed, The Fantasy Shed, The Myths Shed, The Picture Book Shed, and at least 25 more. Each "shed" has images and videos along with suggestions for using them. The activities and materials will appeal to many age groups from primary to college age. The Literacy Shed also features a resource a week and a blog entry for the week. This site is free, but donations are accepted. The Resource Shed features lesson plans and worksheets from others to go along with the animations. Only the videos use Flash. At the time of this review, all advertising was related to educational sites and activities.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): creative writing (167), descriptive writing (42), expository writing (43), literacy (107), reading comprehension (124), writers workshop (33), writing (368), writing prompts (94)

In the Classroom

The Literacy shed is full of ideas for writing, creating, and improving your student's critical thinking skills. There are lesson plans with explicit instructions for writing. The high quality resources found here can be used as "stand alone" lessons or can be an introduction to a unit. Look to see if there is one to support a unit you already use. Here is an idea: after viewing one of your favorite picture books via video, and completing some of the suggested activities, have students bring in their favorite picture book and create activities similar to those found on The Literacy Shed. They could also create a video either with pictures from the book or by creating their own pictures and narrating the story. Be sure students use proper citation if posting them on TeacherTube, reviewed here, or another online program. Not finding your favorite book on The Literacy Shed? See if you can find a YouTube or Vimeo video and create your own lesson from a model at The Literacy Shed.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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OCD Education Station - Beyond OCD

Grades
K to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
OCD Education Station provides resources and information for helping those with OCD. Learn about OCD facts with a primer for educators that includes recognizing symptoms and challenges...more
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OCD Education Station provides resources and information for helping those with OCD. Learn about OCD facts with a primer for educators that includes recognizing symptoms and challenges to student performance. Find helpful information on managing OCD in the classroom as well as tips for communicating with parents. Choose the tools and resources link to access several printable guides available in English and Spanish for parents, teens, and school personnel.

tag(s): professional development (162), psychology (67)

In the Classroom

Share this site as a professional resource with other educators as needed when dealing with individuals with OCD. Share with parents of OCD students as an additional resource for helping their child.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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FindIcons - findicons.com

Grades
K to 12
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FindIcons.com is a search tool that helps you find free icons. Type your term in the search bar to view icons in FindIcons database. Choose from several different options to ...more
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FindIcons.com is a search tool that helps you find free icons. Type your term in the search bar to view icons in FindIcons database. Choose from several different options to download icons in the file format desired, such as png. Convert to jpg, bmp, or several other file options. Each icon includes licensing information so you can look for icons that are Creative Commons or public domain. Create an account then make user sets of your favorite icons. Access your user sets from anywhere through the FindIcons website. Explore the TAGS button to find search ideas. Be aware: ANY word/term can be searched, some may not be appropriate for the classroom. If you plan to allow young people to use this site independently, be sure to discuss appropriate searching.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): images (274)

In the Classroom

Bookmark this site as a resource for finding and saving icons to use on your website, or to include with class projects. Share this site with students to find icons for projects. If you make a whole-class account, you can create user sets in advance of projects to save time. In primary grades, these icons are terrific for teacher use! Use icons to create non-verbal signs for your non-readers in your classroom. Special education, world language, and ELL/ESL teachers can create non-verbal prompts for language learning. Use icons on your interactive whiteboard as drag and drop or labeling activities to build vocabulary and more.

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FotoFlexer - Arbor Labs, Inc.

Grades
3 to 12
4 Favorites 0  Comments
   
Flex your photo creativity with this free tool. Transform images with scrapbook-like effects and embellishments. Begin with basic effects like cropping and contrasting. Add text, draw...more
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Flex your photo creativity with this free tool. Transform images with scrapbook-like effects and embellishments. Begin with basic effects like cropping and contrasting. Add text, draw on the photo, and add animated effects to flex your photo editing muscles. The tool is integrated with Facebook and most photosharing sites. You can also upload photos from your computer. Resave photos back to your computer, share online, or store in FotoFlexer. Flex your photos without an account or create an account to store them in FotoFlexer. Only the demonstrations require FLASH.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): images (274), photography (159)

In the Classroom

Stretch your students' creativity with these fun photo effects. Type sentences or definitions on photos that represent vocabulary words. Highlight geometric shapes in photos with the drawing tool to show math in everyday life or around the world. Integrate images in multimedia products. Narrate images with UtellStory (reviewed here) or other digital storytelling tools. Use the text tool to draw information on maps. Upload images from science labs for students to annotate their experiment. Upload images of student artwork and have students annotate to explain their techniques. In world languages, add the vocabulary word for actions or objects to create a picture dictionary. Enhance pictures for blogs, wikis, or classroom sites. Be sure to check district policy before using student pictures. Annotate photos for visual directions for assignments. If using pictures from the Internet, be sure to discuss copyright issues and approve pictures for student use. To find Creative Commons images for student projects (with credit, of course), try Compfight, reviewed here, Wikimedia Commons, reviewed here, or PhotoPin, reviewed here.

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ESL Discussions - Sean Banville

Grades
7 to 12
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ESL Discussions is a resource of over 600 discussion questions. They could be used in ESL/ELL lessons, speaking practice, debate clubs, and as needed for any speaking activities. Categorized...more
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ESL Discussions is a resource of over 600 discussion questions. They could be used in ESL/ELL lessons, speaking practice, debate clubs, and as needed for any speaking activities. Categorized alphabetically, topics include everyday themes such as donuts as well as more controversial topics such as marijuana. Teachers working with K-12 students will want to select the questions rather than sending students to the site since there are also some very sensitive topics. Choose a topic to view two sets of questions to spark conversations: one for student A and another for student B. Choose the link to print questions in either Word or PDF. Although this site has a lot of advertisements, there are some very interesting topics to discuss/share.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): debate (45), speaking (26)

In the Classroom

Bookmark this site to use anytime you want to develop and promote discussion skills in your classroom. After students have completed their discussion questions, have them present their findings to the class then create a quick poll (with no membership required) using using Updwn, reviewed here. Share with ESL/ELL and Special Education teachers as a resource for promoting discussion and speaking skills with their students. Use this site for teacher-selected topics in debate club, speech class, and more. Some of the topics could even make good blog prompts.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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English Lessons on American Presidents - Sean Banville

Grades
4 to 12
3 Favorites 0  Comments
 
This American Presidents website contains lesson plans for teaching about each of the US presidents all the way through Barack Obama. The site uses the informational text about each...more
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This American Presidents website contains lesson plans for teaching about each of the US presidents all the way through Barack Obama. The site uses the informational text about each president to teach, reinforce, and review English language concepts. The site is directly geared toward ESL/ELL students. However, all users will benefit from materials provided. Choose any president to view a short biography. There are also language lessons such as fill in the blank and writing activities. Choose from links at the top of the page to print the lesson in PDF format, hear the article read in mp3 format, and view additional activities such as flash cards and word jumbles. Although heavy in advertising, this site is worth a look as a resource for activities and lessons about US presidents.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): jefferson (19), kennedy (25), lincoln (86), presidents (121), reading comprehension (124), washington (32)

In the Classroom

Bookmark and save this site as a resource to accompany US presidents units or to supplement current materials used in teaching about the presidents. This is a great tool to use in English/language arts class for nonfiction readings. If you want to remove distracting advertisements, use a tool such as Readability (reviewed here). Print activities and biographies about several different presidents to add to your substitute folder. Share this site with ESL/ELL and Special Education teachers as a resource for materials.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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ESL Reader- Online Reading Help - ESLdesk.com

Grades
2 to 12
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ESL Reader provides instant reading help for English language learners. Use it to improve reading time and reading skills. Simply copy/paste or type text into the box and click. Each...more
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ESL Reader provides instant reading help for English language learners. Use it to improve reading time and reading skills. Simply copy/paste or type text into the box and click. Each word becomes a link to a dictionary, thesaurus, or other reference including Wikipedia. Numerous dictionaries and references are available. Select the dictionary or other reference work and click. The site also translates the selected text into a variety of languages, but use caution with online translators! They often scramble meaning and syntax.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): dictionaries (56), guided reading (48), thesaurus (23), vocabulary development (126)

In the Classroom

Provide a link to this site on classroom computers, and use it like a dictionary. Share this link with parents and students on your class web site to have as a resource any time.

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Writing Lesson of the Month Network - Corbett Harrrison

Grades
4 to 12
2 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Discover a wealth of writing ideas at this expansive site, including "Common Core friendly" ones! Sign up for the monthly newsletter to get a new writing idea each month. ...more
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Discover a wealth of writing ideas at this expansive site, including "Common Core friendly" ones! Sign up for the monthly newsletter to get a new writing idea each month. This Ning site has several groups to join, depending on your interests. If the group you're looking for doesn't exist, create one. At the time of this review, the current month's writing lesson is at the top of the home page. The menu across the top provides access to past writing lessons. This site mentions the Six Traits of Writing, and each month focuses on a different trait. A picture book that also focuses on the writing trait is part of the lesson plan.

tag(s): creative writing (167), six traits of writing (7), writing (368), writing prompts (94)

In the Classroom

Find ideas for your students to write about. Or better yet, show them the categories, lists, and ideas and have them choose something as a class. Create small groups and allow them to look through the past writing lessons and books and decide as a group what they would like to write about. Use a program such as MixedInk reviewed here or allwritewithme reviewed here to help them collaborate on their writing experience. The site uses the Six Traits of Writing, and each month focuses on a different trait. To learn more about the Six Traits of writing visit Six Traits of Writing reviewed here or 6+1 Trait Writing Lesson Plans reviewed here.

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Famous People Lessons - Sean Banville

Grades
6 to 12
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This collection of over 150 lessons provides biographies and profiles of well known personalities for ESL/ELL (and other) students. The famous people range from 50 Cent to Walt Disney....more
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This collection of over 150 lessons provides biographies and profiles of well known personalities for ESL/ELL (and other) students. The famous people range from 50 Cent to Walt Disney. Scroll through the list of names. The main page shows each person's profession (or claim to fame), nationality, birthdate and date of death (when appropriate). Choose a name to go to the lesson. Lessons include a short biography (7-8th grade level reading) and activities to accompany it. Examples of activities include synonym match, cloze activities, spelling, and discussion questions.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): biographies (91), fluency (25), parts of speech (66), reading comprehension (124), spelling (166), summarizing (16), word choice (27)

In the Classroom

This is an excellent site to use as part of a biography unit to match biographies to individual student interests. Allow students to choose a person, then print activities for them to complete. Use this site to practice reading fluency, informational texts, and comprehension with any student, Use this site in your substitute folder. Choose several biographies and print accompanying activities for students to complete. Have students create an annotated image of a biographical character including text boxes and related links using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here. Share with learning support teachers as well as ESL/ELL teachers to use as a high interest activity for older students.

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Symphonical - Bjorn Haugland

Grades
6 to 12
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Get organized using Symphonical, an easy to use application made of whiteboards and sticky notes. Sign up to use the site using your email, Facebook, or Google+ login. Choose the ...more
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Get organized using Symphonical, an easy to use application made of whiteboards and sticky notes. Sign up to use the site using your email, Facebook, or Google+ login. Choose the type of wall you want to use: calendar, meeting agenda, or prioritized to-do's. Create your own wall if you don't see an option that works for your needs. Add notes and information as desired. Collaborate with others easily. Change colors of notes to represent priorities, to designate users, or to sort and categorize information. Drag and drop notes to different boxes on your whiteboard as desired. Click on category titles to change information. Add columns or rows or move columns. Share walls with participants, setting options including private or public viewing and allowing viewers to participate on the wall.

tag(s): brainstorming (25), bulletin boards (18), organizational skills (129)

In the Classroom

Use this resource to track steps for accomplishing a project. This is great for improving organizational skills! Increase communication among members of a group. Use with individual students to identify educational goals (such as emotional support or learning support goals) and help set steps for reaching these goals. Keep track of assignments easily with one click. Share documents and other material through the sticky notes. Teachers of gifted but disorganized students or learning support students can draw these students into better organizational skills using this engaging tool.

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Szoter - szoter.com

Grades
K to 12
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Szoter is an online tool for annotating images stored on your computer or screenshots from your computer. Use this site directly on the web or download the Adobe Air version ...more
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Szoter is an online tool for annotating images stored on your computer or screenshots from your computer. Use this site directly on the web or download the Adobe Air version that runs on your desktop. Launch then choose from options to annotate such as load local image, capture camera image, make screenshot, or load image url. After your image loads, choose from editing options such as scaling image, drawing tools such as lines, arrows, and circles, and add text. When finished, save to your computer or publish and share to Twitter, Facebook, or copy the url provided.

tag(s): digital storytelling (151), images (274)

In the Classroom

Capture a screenshot of websites or software and annotate with directions for student use. Have students label and identify objects in an image. Label parts of a plant, continents, landforms, etc. Practice new words in a different language by asking students to label and identify objects in that language. Create a storyboard using several annotated images as a story starter. Art students can annotate images to point out design elements or annotate images of their own work to talk about the creative decisions they made. Share annotated Szoter images on your class website or blog to tell about a field trip or class event.

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QuizBean - Bluehouse Group

Grades
K to 12
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QuizBean is an online quiz generator that does not require registration. Create "this or that" (sorting) quizzes that involve two options easily and quickly. Begin with a title then...more
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QuizBean is an online quiz generator that does not require registration. Create "this or that" (sorting) quizzes that involve two options easily and quickly. Begin with a title then add quiz answer options. These will be the same two answers for every question. Write the question in the next screen. Add as many additional questions as desired. When completed, save and share via your unique QuizBean URL or send via email, Facebook, or Twitter. Responses receive a correct or incorrect notification. A running total of responses displays on the right side of the screen. Although this site is recommended for all grades, with elementary students the teacher should create the QuizBean for students (with their input). The home page features titles of quizzes created by current users (general public). Check the site before sharing it with students. Displayed on the front page are the most recent quizzes For example, at the time of this review, there were quizzes about beer preference.

tag(s): quiz (88), quizzes (102), test prep (96)

In the Classroom

This site would be great for review in many subject areas. Share how to use this site on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Create a QuizBean for early elementary students to identify nouns and verbs, animals and plants, vertebrates and invertebrates, healthy or unhealthy foods, etc. Have students identify Union or Confederate items for Civil War studies. In Science challenge students to categorize animals as mammal or reptile. Pretest your gifted students and allow them to "test out" of material already known. Challenge students to create their own QuizBean for others to use for review and post a link to the quizzes on the class website or blog. Create this-or-that quizzes for ESL/ELL students as they learn English, and then as they start writing to identify proper subject verb and subject pronoun agreement.

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The Book Drum - Book Drum, Ltd.

Grades
5 to 12
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Book Drum has the ultimate in book reviews and more for classic and contemporary fiction and nonfiction. Reviews are so colossally informative that Book Drum calls them "profiles" instead...more
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Book Drum has the ultimate in book reviews and more for classic and contemporary fiction and nonfiction. Reviews are so colossally informative that Book Drum calls them "profiles" instead of reviews. All types of readers will enjoy the interactive, visual content and attention to detail. Each "profile" has what you would expect: a summary, author information, and a review. However, that is where the "normal" stops and the colossal will begin. Some of the pages also include videos, gorgeous photos with captions and explanations, and maps of the area. The glossary defines difficult, unusual, and world language vocabulary. The most impressive feature is the Bookmarks. This is a page-by-page commentary and illustrations of the text. Head over to Book Drum and type in your favorite book title to see how informative it is. If your favorite book that is not on Book Drum, contact them and ask for a "profile" to be created or volunteer to create one for them as a contributor. Some of the videos require Flash.

tag(s): authors (123), book lists (133), book reports (39), independent reading (130), novels (22), writers workshop (33)

In the Classroom

Whether you are a high school class studying "To Kill a Mockingbird" or an elementary teacher reading Roald Dahl's "Mathilda" with your class, you will want to share with the excellent research that has gone into the "Bookmark" pages at Book Drum. For instance, in the first 25 pages Dahl's "Mathilda" mention the novels or the authors of "The Secret Garden," "Great Expectations," "A Moveable Feast," "Heart of Darkness," "Secret Agent," and "Kim." You will find explanations about the books and authors and links for more information. This is a powerful way to introduce young readers to the classics, the authors who wrote them, and general background knowledge.

If you run a reading/writing workshop with your middle or high school students or want to promote books in your library media center, introduce students to "Twilight," "The Graveyard Book" (Neil Gaiman), or any other contemporary book to help satisfy their curiosity about the places and information mentioned. If Book Drum doesn't have a "profile" on the book your literature circles are reading, have your students create a final project modeled on the Book Drum example. Use a wiki for student groups to collaborate on book profile pages. To learn more about using wikis in your classroom, check out the TeachersFirst Wiki Walk-Through. Another good program for nonfiction literature circle projects is Meograph, (reviewed here).
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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