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Introducing the ELA Common Core - Kevin's Meandering Mind

Grades
K to 12
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View this Prezi to learn more about the focus and goals of the Common Core English Language Arts standards. Among the highlights are reasons for the Common Core, shifts that ...more
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View this Prezi to learn more about the focus and goals of the Common Core English Language Arts standards. Among the highlights are reasons for the Common Core, shifts that are taking place, video clips explaining WHAT the Common Core means, and where Common Core plans to go.

tag(s): commoncore (94)

In the Classroom

This Prezi is very useful for the introduction of the Common Core standards to faculty or parents. This would be a great presentation to share at faculty meetings, inservice, or even at Back to School Night (probably a short clip, not the entire presentation). Share this link on your class website for parents (and older students) to learn more about the Common Core.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Pause For Later - Pause For Later

Grades
K to 12
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Pause for Later is a browser extension that allows you to pause a YouTube, Vimeo, or Hulu video and resume playing it anywhere, anytime. You do have to download and ...more
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Pause for Later is a browser extension that allows you to pause a YouTube, Vimeo, or Hulu video and resume playing it anywhere, anytime. You do have to download and install the bookmarklet or extension. Sign up for a free account for the server to store details of your paused videos. The program also keeps a record of the videos you watch, saving you from having to bookmark or search for them later. The program has extensions or bookmarklets for Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, Opera, and Safari. There is an "Action" button on the side of the video that allows you to restart from the beginning and mark it as unmarked. There are several other features. After installing the extension, you'll see a pause button in your browser. Continue your paused videos from any computer, not just the one where you paused them.

tag(s): video (254)

In the Classroom

If a video is too long to share during one class period, use this tool to pick up where you left the video. It is worthwhile to ask the techies to install it at least on your teacher machine if school machines are locked down. Share this with your students when you assign videos to be watched from home, queuing the video to the start point you want the to use. Encourage students to mark start points for videos they include in oral presentations. Save them time searching if they get interrupted while viewing. This would be a useful tool to share on your class website.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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40 Interesting Ways to Use QR Codes in the Classroom - Tom Barrett

Grades
3 to 12
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Find ideas for using QR codes in the classroom. This slideshow is a must-see to get many unique ideas for using QR codes. Examples include adding QR codes to worksheets ...more
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Find ideas for using QR codes in the classroom. This slideshow is a must-see to get many unique ideas for using QR codes. Examples include adding QR codes to worksheets for students to check answers or to go to a video explanation for completing the worksheet. Another idea: print a QR code on a sticker and place into textbooks for students to access additional content. Add to displays or bulletin boards to make them interactive. There are many great ideas shared on this site. It is definitely worth a visit for anyone using or wanting to use QR codes in their classroom. Of course, you do need to have devices that can read the QR codes; smart phones and iTouches work well.

tag(s): qr codes (21)

In the Classroom

Choose one of the ideas suggested in the slideshow as a starting point for using QR codes. Try additional ideas one at a time. Share the slideshow with other teachers and split up the ideas for each to become an "expert" in one of the strategies. Share your experiences as you learn together. Challenge your students to dream up other uses for the codes. As a service project, students could create a QR code school "tour" or add QR codes for students to use while waiting in the cafeteria line to access nutrition information about today's menu.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Twitter - Education Chats - Chat Scheduler

Grades
K to 12
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This Google site is a chat schedule for Twitter educational hashtags. Take a look at who is using Twitter and why. You'll see that Twitter isn't just idle "chat." This ...more
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This Google site is a chat schedule for Twitter educational hashtags. Take a look at who is using Twitter and why. You'll see that Twitter isn't just idle "chat." This is just the educational chats. You can find diverse chats about everything from leadership, to minimalist running enthusiasts, to 4th grade teachers, and more. You'll probably find something that piques your interest! Some of the chats occur live, but many are ongoing. Not free at a chat time? You can always read the tweets later.

tag(s): microblogging (44), social networking (112), twitter (50)

In the Classroom

Explore the site to discover and follow educational and professional chats that match your interests and needs. Read the tweets about what is happening in other classrooms to gain some new/fresh ideas. Students in upper grades interested in a particular career or trying to find a mentor in an area of interest could use this. You may want to preview and pick out certain hashtags for your student(s). Want to know more about Twitter? See TeachersFirst's Twitter for Teachers page.

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Widbook - Flavio Aguiar

Grades
K to 12
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Write, read, and share digital books with Widbook. Create a digital book that contains text, images, and videos. You can rearrange content on pages and upload images, etc. Invite others...more
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Write, read, and share digital books with Widbook. Create a digital book that contains text, images, and videos. You can rearrange content on pages and upload images, etc. Invite others to make contributions to your books. Create a profile on the site to begin your book or collaborate with others (or you can skip this step). Books you create become a part of your profile. If you allow it, other Widbook members can add content and or comments to your books. You can change setting to allow comments and additions on a book or not. Likewise, you can search for others' books and contribute to their books. The only way to share your books is with others logged into Widbook or other social media (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest).

tag(s): creative writing (166), descriptive writing (41), expository writing (44), paragraph writing (17), persuasive writing (55), process writing (42), writing (359)

In the Classroom

Create books on any subject for your students to review or learn. Set up a whole class account or use individual accounts with those 13 and older if school policy allows it. Challenge students to create a book as a multi-media presentation instead of a typical book report. This would be great to use for a student/star of the week presentation. Each week add a student's information. Do this together as a class on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Create a link (and log in) on classroom computers for students to view the book when they wish. Use this tool for groups to collaborate on science concept tales, poetry books, general writing, math problem solve-its, and more. ANY grade can use this tool with a whole class account, depending on the amount of direction by the teacher. Have students create a book as an end of the year culminatng/review project.

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Cropp.me - imagga

Grades
4 to 12
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Crop and resize your images using this online tool. Upload your images and select the desired size. There are several predefined sizes to choose from: an avatar image, gallery thumbnail,...more
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Crop and resize your images using this online tool. Upload your images and select the desired size. There are several predefined sizes to choose from: an avatar image, gallery thumbnail, Facebook timeline cover image, or you can select a custom size (width and height) for your particular purpose. Crop up to 5 images simultaneously. The site detects the most interesting part of each image to use when cropping. Adjust the placement as needed. When finished, select images to keep and download to your computer.

tag(s): images (266), photography (160)

In the Classroom

Quickly and easily crop pictures and images to any desired size for use in projects and presentations. Share with students to use with projects and presentations for making images uniform in size.
 

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Playfic - Andy Baio and Cooper McHatton

Grades
4 to 12
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Create interactive, text-based games with this simple tool. Perhaps you remember a text-based game called "Adventure" from back in the early days of computers. Be sure to watch the...more
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Create interactive, text-based games with this simple tool. Perhaps you remember a text-based game called "Adventure" from back in the early days of computers. Be sure to watch the tutorial on the home page that also teaches you how to navigate the stories themselves. By clicking on the "Learn More" when you're signed out, or the "About Us" when you're signed in, you can view the "cheat sheet" that will certainly make your first creative attempt at Playfic more enjoyable. Experiment with Playfic games created by others and time yourself. if you get stuck, you can look at the source code. Create your own Playfic for any topic that interests you, whether it's fiction or not. Note that there is no moderation on games created by others, so preview before sharing with young people.

tag(s): creative writing (166), creativity (109), digital storytelling (144), gamification (65), mysteries (25), puzzles (208)

In the Classroom

"Gamification" of learning is a hot topic in 21st century learning. Use this simple tool to make it happen. Use for any digital storytelling: fact or fiction. In social studies, have students create an interactive game based on life during the Depression or any historic era. Have them create a "Where in the world is ..." for geography. World language students could make a simple game (in the language they are studying) about daily life. Gifted students will love creating games on their favorite topics, so make this a research-and-create-a-game approach for independent projects. Science students could make a game about what might happen in certain weather or life as a fossil. Have your language arts students create mystery or survival stories or even a different ending to a story you've read together. Warning: all stories are PUBLIC and your students will be able to view other's stories. You'll either want to have a class account or monitor this closely.

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Aven's Corner - Preschool Educational Games - Billy Collins

Grades
K to 2
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Aven's Corner is designed by a father as a resource for activities for his autistic son. Find fun and entertaining games and coloring pages for preschoolers and children with special...more
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Aven's Corner is designed by a father as a resource for activities for his autistic son. Find fun and entertaining games and coloring pages for preschoolers and children with special needs. Explore the activity archives to find simple activities to do with young children such as celebrating National Pink Day or taking a number walk. Visit the parent resources portion of the site to read a definition of autism and view a checklist of symptoms. Be sure to check out the Comix creator; use the drag and drop feature to add backgrounds, animals, shapes, and more to your own unique creations. When finished, print, save, or publish your Comix using the links on the page. Publishing requires giving the author's name and a comic title. Some of the pages are slightly slow loading, so a little patience is required (another skill for children to build).
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): alphabet (92), autism (22), comics and cartoons (74), literacy (103), phonics (75), stories and storytelling (33)

In the Classroom

Share this site with special needs teachers, parents of autistic students, or speech teachers. Activities are not just for autistic children. All young learners can benefit from the activities such as popping letter bubbles. Create a link on classroom computers and use as a learning center. Create a Comix creation as a class on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) when creating a class story. Use the Comix feature on your whiteboard to retell a story using the images provided.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Teach Preschool - Promoting Excellence in Early Childhood Education - Deborah J. Stewart

Grades
K to 2
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Teach Preschool is a delightful blog filled with activities for teaching preschoolers (and primary grades). Updated often, the blog articles include activities, classroom images, and...more
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Teach Preschool is a delightful blog filled with activities for teaching preschoolers (and primary grades). Updated often, the blog articles include activities, classroom images, and practical suggestions. Choose from topics for exploration including: Powered by Play, Exploring Books, or Exploring Art. Use the search bar to look for specific content, explore recent posts, or browse monthly archives. Another way to explore is using the icons on the left side of the page. Although geared toward preschool, this site is worth a visit for anyone interested in educating young children.
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tag(s): alphabet (92), counting (120), density (21), dental health (23), numbers (204), phonics (75), plants (145), preK (281)

In the Classroom

Search the site for ideas. Save them to your Pinterest account (reviewed here) to find for later use. Bookmark the site as a resource for teaching ideas. Subscribe to this blog via Facebook, Twitter, or email to receive the latest blog updates.

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Elementary Test Prep ELA - Studyzone.org

Grades
1 to 4
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This Elementary Test Prep for English Language Arts website gives information to help students, teachers, and parents gain more information and prepare specifically for the New York...more
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This Elementary Test Prep for English Language Arts website gives information to help students, teachers, and parents gain more information and prepare specifically for the New York State tests. The information, however, is applicable to any standardized test. Find grade level resources for grades K - 4 ELA: lessons, practice, interactive games, teacher resources, and literature for every standard. Tips for parents include ideas to help families better prepare their children for standardized testing. Click to find the tutorials and practice pages for your desired content. If you are looking for a specific topic, you can use the search feature for the particular skill that you need help with.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): test prep (95)

In the Classroom

Each testing area provides lessons, practice activities, teacher resources, and sometimes literature tie-ins. Explore literature and resources to widen your teaching repertoire. Share resources on your class web page to support students and parents at home.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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PDFescape - Red Software

Grades
K to 12
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Use this site to be able to edit PDF documents. It is free and easy to use. Upload your PDF document or link to an existing online PDF. Add additional ...more
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Use this site to be able to edit PDF documents. It is free and easy to use. Upload your PDF document or link to an existing online PDF. Add additional text or free hand writing. Create drawings or add images. You can create PDFs, edit PDFs, fill-out existing PDFs, save/print PDFs, and more. When finished, download the final product. No sign up is required to use most features. If you must complete entry forms, applications, or otehr pdf forms, this tool can be a lifesaver.
This site includes advertising.

In the Classroom

Use to alter documents that may have been saved as a PDF in the past. Save this site in your professional resources. If you work with students who request college recommendations or need to fill out forms for scholarships or jobs, be sure to share this tool with them!
 

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Crickweb Learning Games Grade 3-5 - Crickweb

Grades
2 to 6
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Discover over 100 online interactives for practicing elementary skills from reading, math, and more at Crickweb. Featured offerings are on the main page, including practicing basic...more
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Discover over 100 online interactives for practicing elementary skills from reading, math, and more at Crickweb. Featured offerings are on the main page, including practicing basic math skills of addition, subtraction, division, and multiplication. Choose additional activities from the bar labeled Key Stage 2 located near the top of the page. This drop-down box provides additional games divided into categories from literacy through French and Spanish. Activities include easy to follow directions and instant feedback for responses. Note that this site uses British spelling!
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tag(s): addition (251), dental health (23), division (172), earth (228), food chains (22), habitats (84), human body (121), life cycles (25), light (46), magnetism (36), map skills (79), matter (58), multiplication (227), parts of speech (68), rivers (21), rocks (49), spelling (168), subtraction (208), sun (71)

In the Classroom

Use on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) as a whole class activity or for a learning center. Create a link to games on classroom computers for students to practice while at centers or during free time. Share this site for at-home practice through your classroom newsletter or blog.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Drama in the ESL Classroom - Jessica Davis

Grades
2 to 12
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Find a wealth of resources for using drama in the ESL/ELL classroom. The same activities can also be useful for other subjects. The improvisation resources are especially exciting,...more
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Find a wealth of resources for using drama in the ESL/ELL classroom. The same activities can also be useful for other subjects. The improvisation resources are especially exciting, offering definitions, examples of activities, links, and visual examples of how you can use improvisational techniques. In addition, information and activities on using plays, process drama, and reader's theater for language teaching abound. Use play writing for another aspect of language teaching. There is a complete curriculum for offering an independent class in drama for ESL/ELL students. Although this site may appear plain vanilla, there are sprinkles throughout, making this tool very valuable and informative.

tag(s): acting (27), creative writing (166), plays (37)

In the Classroom

Use this site as the starting point for group projects like having the students write and produce their own play(s). This is a great find for gifted students as well as students studying any modern language as the play writing and acting techniques can easily be adapted. Challenge cooperative learning groups to create videos of the plays they write and produce. Share the videos on a site such as TeacherTube reviewed here.

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25 Trends - 25Trends

Grades
4 to 12
2 Favorites 0  Comments
 
This site provides "Twitter analytics for the masses." Enter a hashtag to find the conversations. This site finds the conversations, analyzes them, then provides the data with related...more
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This site provides "Twitter analytics for the masses." Enter a hashtag to find the conversations. This site finds the conversations, analyzes them, then provides the data with related buzzwords and information in a visually appealing way. This site updates information every 10 minutes. Please preview/pretest a few minutes before you share with students or children. Our editors noticed that some keywords pull up vulgar language. (We searched "school.")
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): twitter (50)

In the Classroom

Use current trending topics (such as elections or other current events from around the world). Revisit the hashtag or trending topic periodically to see the changes in the topic, including the buzzwords that change over time. Look at news reports or causes for the change in the trend. Twitter trends could be useful in any subject area but especially useful for current events, civics, health, and economics. New to Twitter and hashtags? Find information to help you here.

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PDFmyURL - OpenTracker.net

Grades
K to 12
3 Favorites 0  Comments
Turn any web page into a PDF document instantly with this incredibly easy tool! Simply type or copy and paste the url into the box and click the "P" button. ...more
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Turn any web page into a PDF document instantly with this incredibly easy tool! Simply type or copy and paste the url into the box and click the "P" button. Instantly the page converts to a PDF document and downloads to your computer for immediate use. Drag the site's bookmarklet onto your browser's toolbar for easy use at any time with any page.

In the Classroom

Use this site to print any web page without all of the headings and other extras that generally appear. Make print outs for students to practice highlighting and looking for main ideas in informational texts (especially if you do not have an interactive whiteboard to do this). Upload PDF's to your website for student use of single pages of websites instead of having students go through unneeded pages. Be sure to show students that you must make a note of the DATE when you made the pdf, since you should always include the "date accessed" in a project bibliography entry for a web site. Talk about "fair use" in making web page copies for temporary use as part of research or class activities vs copying web pages to hang them up as locker decorations! This may be a good site to share with parents via your website. (Help them save paper and print only what they need, not an entire website.)
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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ClipChoose - ClipChoose.com

Grades
3 to 12
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ClipChoose makes polls based on YouTube videos -- not your typical polling/survey site. Create an account with only your email and password. Enter a question, then enter the URLs of...more
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ClipChoose makes polls based on YouTube videos -- not your typical polling/survey site. Create an account with only your email and password. Enter a question, then enter the URLs of up to eight YouTube videos. Share your poll by url or via Twitter or Facebook. The rest is up to your audience to make choices. The total votes for each choice show under the video clip. Not sure you want to make your own poll? Browse the site for polls already created. Be sure to choose before sharing with young people. This is a public site and content isn't moderated. Currently all polls are public; however, private polls and more management features will be available soon. View an example poll created here in less than 10 minutes. The videos are hosted on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable. You could always view the videos at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid reviewed here to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): polls and surveys (48)

In the Classroom

Challenge students to create their own polls then search for YouTube videos to support or explain each response. Create a ClipChoose poll as a teacher or whole class. Have students respond then write a response using quotes from videos to back up their choice. Administer a poll, then use the data for graphing practice. Display sample polls (made by you or the class) and data for practice with interpreting graphs. Collect parent or student opinions about any topic. Take a poll at back to school night to find out what parents' greatest concerns or misconceptions are. Obtain quick feedback from students about which curriculum topics are confusing them. Allow students to create polls as part of critical thinking exercises such as how poll wording may bias the results. Encourage students to include polls in oral presentations to increase audience engagement. Teach students about types of propaganda using up to 8 example videos in ClipChoose. Ask students to select the one that demonstrates the use of a particular propaganda technique.

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PDF Converter - pdfconverter.com

Grades
K to 12
5 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Quickly and easily convert PDF to Word, Excel, and Powerpoint. Create a PDF from almost any file using the converter. To use, select the type of conversion. Locate the PDF ...more
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Quickly and easily convert PDF to Word, Excel, and Powerpoint. Create a PDF from almost any file using the converter. To use, select the type of conversion. Locate the PDF file you want to convert on your computer (even if it is only in your download folder). Enter your email address. You will receive an email with a link to your converted file. Be sure to check your "junk filter" on your email in case it does not show up directly in your inbox. Click on the attachment and download your brand new Word file! Maximum file size of an uploaded file is 2MB.
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tag(s): worksheets (60)

In the Classroom

Ever find really neat activity sheets, but they need to be tweaked a little to make them work for your classes? This tool helps you save time by allowing you to edit PDF files in Word to avoid reinventing the wheel. (Beware of copyrighted materials, however). Science teachers can take lab activities and refine questions or add instructions as needed for their classrooms. English teachers can add standardized test prompts to preexisting general worksheets to tailor the activity to suit their state's test needs. This is a helpful utility for students entering contests or completing applications offered only in pdf form.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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AllSides - John Gable

Grades
4 to 12
10 Favorites 0  Comments
Look at political, national and international issues from all sides: left, right, and center. Colored banners identify the perspective. Current content focuses on political discussions,...more
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Look at political, national and international issues from all sides: left, right, and center. Colored banners identify the perspective. Current content focuses on political discussions, but as the site evolves the plan is to include other topics such as health care, finances, and parenting. Find other specific topics by choosing the issues tab, then choosing from keywords such as energy, taxes, or violence in America. Choose from different tabs to view issues, bias, and the site's blog. Especially interesting is the bias section. Users rate their own bias on several issues to determine their bias toward left, center, or right. Email signup is available to become involved with the site but isn't necessary to access all of the articles and content.
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tag(s): elections (75), media literacy (58), politics (99)

In the Classroom

This is an excellent site to easily find topics presented from various points of view. Use articles with students to demonstrate point of view in writing, bias in media, or for students to use as points for debates. Use an online tool such as Interactive Three Circle Venn Diagram, reviewed here, to create a visual comparison of different points of view.

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Sub Hub - Rachel Friedrich

Grades
K to 12
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This blog offers ideas and resources to help substitute teachers make the most out of every day. It includes practical ideas such as what to bring to school as a ...more
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This blog offers ideas and resources to help substitute teachers make the most out of every day. It includes practical ideas such as what to bring to school as a substitute (who would have thought to bring your own "teacher-friendly" pencil sharpener?). There are also free k-5 lesson plans. The best part is all of the tips, support, and stories provided for substitute teachers "in the trenches." Although geared toward elementary teachers, ideas and suggestions are appropriate for any grade level.
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tag(s): classroom management (135), newbies (18), substitutes (21)

In the Classroom

Regular classroom teachers might want to share this in their emergency lesson plans for subs. Substitutes, don't go into the classroom empty handed. Bookmark this useful website (or make it a TeachersFirst Favorite so you can find it anytime) and be prepared for the unexpected! New teachers and student teachers can learn from the many tips. If you are mentoring or working with a student teacher, share some of these ideas. For even more, be sure to check out Teachers First's Ideas and Resources for Substitutes here.

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Promethean Planet - Promethean, Inc

Grades
K to 12
4 Favorites 1  Comments
 
Looking for resources to use on your interactive whiteboard? If so, this site is a tremendous resource for all whiteboard users, not just those with a Promethean Board. View, search,...more
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Looking for resources to use on your interactive whiteboard? If so, this site is a tremendous resource for all whiteboard users, not just those with a Promethean Board. View, search, and download from over 60,000 resources in all subject areas and grade levels. Use the Resources tab to search by state standard, content, grade level, or resource type. Register on the site to enable download ability as well as many other features such as saving favorites, reviewing resources, asking questions on the technical forum, following specific users, and uploading your own resources. Each resource includes a short description, grade level recommendation, file format, and size. Another great feature is the slide show included with each download for previewing different pages used on each chart.

tag(s): iwb (31), numbers (204), preK (281), resources (112)

In the Classroom

Before you try any of these activities, think about how you can make the lesson more student-centered. Find ideas in TeachersFirst's Hands off, Vanna! Giving Students Control of Interactive Whiteboard Learning . Browse the site for interactive whiteboard resources to download for classroom use. Bookmark and save favorites for later use. Download any resource, then tweak it to your individual needs. Have questions about creating Promethean Flipcharts? Post your question on the technical board to receive helpful replies. If you have a SmartBoard, be sure to check out the SmartBoard lessons and resources page located here. You will need to download the ActivInspire software (free).

Comments

This is the go-to site for Promethean flipchart downloads. Most files were created by teachers. The only downside is that the files are hit-or-miss. There are many gems, but you might have to browse some not-so-great files to find them. Tim, , Grades: 0 - 6

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