TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of Feb 16, 2020
Here are this week's features. Clicking the tags in the description area of each listing will present a list of other resources with this topic. | Click here to return to the Featured Sites Archive
Grades5 to 9
In the ClassroomTake advantage of the many suggested classroom uses for this resource found on the Instructional Guide (PDF). Consider using the historical information and primary sources from the book to have students create timelines of the important events during a period in Tubman's life. Find a variety of free online timeline creation tools located here. Using the map and locales, trace and then calculate distances for some of Tubman's rescues, missions, and places she lived. Use Google My Maps, reviewed here, to create and share custom maps.
Grades5 to 12
In the ClassroomAlthough this site is useful for many purposes, sometimes it is best just to let students explore and discover on their own. Share Voyager with students and allow them time to look around and select places that intrigue them. Encourage them to learn more about an area or subject of interest found on the site. Instead of writing down information, ask students to use Google Docs or Microsoft Word to begin research. Using these online documents affords many benefits, including the ability to add comments, highlight information, and add links to online information. Once research is underway, suggest that students use a bookmarking tool like SearchTeam, reviewed here, to organize information. SearchTeam includes the ability to add notes to bookmarks, making it easy for students to label and add information for later use. As a final project and to extend student learning, ask students to create their own virtual tour of a location using Story Maps, reviewed here, that includes images, videos, and text.
Grades6 to 8
tag(s): black history (73), civil rights (133), constitution (93), democracy (17), elections (77), freedom of speech (12), immigrants (25), immigration (66), media literacy (80), politics (106), Research (23), world war 2 (145)
In the ClassroomTake advantage of the free materials on this site to encourage debate and discussion within your current civics lessons. Each lesson includes primary sources to use when responding to prompts; ask students to find and share additional primary sources to include with their response to each question. Instead of just creating a list of additional resources, enhance student learning and classroom technology use by sharing additional resources using Padlet, reviewed here. Padlet offers features for adding comments; ask students to use this feature to indicate important information found on the document. Enhance learning further by finding and sharing videos that support the topic being discussed. Use EdPuzzle, reviewed here, to add comments and question prompts for students. Upon completion of student projects, have them share their thoughts through a podcast featuring students' challenge solutions. Be sure to include a group of students in each podcast featuring various points of view and their backup documentation.
Grades4 to 12
In the ClassroomShare this beautiful site and images on an interactive whiteboard or with a projector, then have students explore on their own. This site can be included with many different geography units to teach landforms found around the United States. Use as a starting point to learn more about our National Parks and Parks Service. Enhance learning by having students create an annotated image of other interesting geographic locations using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here. Thinglink allows you to include text boxes, related links, and videos. Challenge cooperative learning groups to create videos using Biteable, reviewed here, of behind the scenes information from your hometown, then share them on a site such as TeacherTube, reviewed here.
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomBookmark these interactive maps for use throughout the year to examine American issues in deeper detail. Share the locations using Google Earth, reviewed here, to get a first-hand look at the geography of the region. This tool is a great find for gifted students. Have them explore in-depth different changes to America over the past two centuries. Replace paper and pen and have them record what they learn using an online journal like Penzu, reviewed here. With Penzu you can add images or your own artwork as illustrations. Take this idea a step further and modify classroom technology use by having students make a multimedia presentation using information found in their research. Use a tool like Zeetings, reviewed here. Zeetings allows adding polls, videos, embeds, web links, PowerPoint, and PDFs.
Grades8 to 12
In the ClassroomInclude a link to Rock the Vote on your class web page for eligible students to access voter registration and other information. Include Rock the Vote as part of any election unit. Have students learn about the latest voting news, explore requirements for voter registration, and discover reasons why it is important to be part of the voting process. Have students create an annotated image including text boxes and related links describing the voter registration process for your state using a tool such as ThingLink, reviewed here.
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomIf you teach or even discuss civil rights, the First Amendment and its freedoms and ideals, current events, or the presidential elections be sure to look at the lessons provided here. The lessons will also help you show students how to tell facts from opinions in current events. Use ideas from the lesson plans to supplement your current teaching materials. Enhance learning and challenge small groups of students to create an infographic sharing their learning from the notes they took during a lesson. Use Infogram, reviewed here, to construct the infographic. If you plan on using one of the EdCollections ask students to enhance and extend their learning and develop a multimedia presention using Presentious, reviewed here, or an interactive poster with a tool like Genial.ly, reviewed here, for one of the suggested Extension Activities.
Grades8 to 12
This site includes advertising.
In the ClassroomShow videos on an interactive whiteboard or projector to your class as an introduction to a new unit or class discussion. Flip your lesson and assign videos for students to view at home or in the computer lab and discuss questions at the next class meeting. Prep for this and engage students by asking questions during the video using Comment Bubble, reviewed here. Use the videos as a springboard for engaging writing prompts or to spark a discussion connected with a unit of study. Enhance learning by having students create a simple infographic with information learned from videos using Easel.ly, reviewed here. Be sure to check out some of the classroom management tips and advice for new teachers for some fresh ideas to use in your classroom!
Grades3 to 12
This site includes advertising.
In the ClassroomShare this link on your class projector or interactive whiteboard. This is a perfect addition if your students are learning the 50 states, capitals, or even countries throughout the world. Be sure to include this site on your class web page for students to access both in and outside of class for further practice. Share this tool as an excellent study guide for learning locations around the world. Challenge students to increase time and accuracy in completing these map activities.
Grades4 to 8
In the ClassroomIntroduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students explore this site independently or in small groups. Use this site as an anticipatory set or "activator" to introduce a unit or lesson on countries around the world. Use this site as a starting point for individual or group projects. Enhance learning by replacing the paper travel brochure and having students create digital maps for a place they want to visit. Using Animaps, reviewed here, students can add text, images, and location stops!
GradesK to 9
In the ClassroomBuild student literacy skills, reinforce what students are learning about Frontiers and Settlers, and help students build the important reading strategy of connecting what they read to prior (classroom!) knowledge. Share this link on your class web page or wiki so students can select independent reading books to accompany your unit on Westward Expansion. Don't forget to share the list with the school and local libraries so they can bring in some of the books on interlibrary loan. CurriConnects are a great help for teachers who have lost school library/media specialists due to budget cuts.
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomThis is one of these sites that is just so perfect for the interactive whiteboard, you feel you must find a way to use it. Use this presentation as a "stop and check for understanding" lesson within the larger discussion of the American Revolution. On an interactive whiteboard or projector, the whole class can participate. Additionally, the site might be available on a classroom computer for those who need some further reinforcement or for students who are ready to challenge themselves to move to the next lesson. Enhance learning by having cooperative learning groups investigate a specific portion of this site and create an interactive online poster using Genial.ly, reviewed here.
Grades5 to 12
In the ClassroomBegin your social studies class once or twice a week by sharing a Date That Matters on a projector or interactive whiteboard to foster broader understanding of the connections that form world history. Or use the links at the end as an extra credit or enrichment opportunity or for gifted students to investigate more. Focus class attention as everyone enters by projecting the date and starting sentence. Make this one a link on your teacher web page for students (and parents) to access outside of school. Substitutes will also appreciate this meaningful and engaging way to connect today with students' prior history knowledge for more than an isolated factoid. It's a lesson ready to go!
This is a terrific site for daily writing and "Do Nows" for my ELA classes. In addition, the site can be used for Morning Meeting/Advisory.Patricia, NJ, Grades: 6 - 12