TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of Aug 30, 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

 

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Family Tree Creator - DNAweekly

Grades
4 to 12
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Quickly build your family tree, without registration, using the Family Tree Creator. Follow prompts to add family member names within the labeled boxes. This site is a no-frills way...more
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Quickly build your family tree, without registration, using the Family Tree Creator. Follow prompts to add family member names within the labeled boxes. This site is a no-frills way to see a detailed view of your family history. You can add names, dates of birth, and dates of death to each entry. Include an image, if available, with each item included on the family tree. Within each entry is an option to add parent's or sibling's information. When finished, download to your computer or share your link using the unique URL for your ancestry tree.

tag(s): family (60), immigration (71), migration (61)

In the Classroom

Use the Family Tree Creator as a research project for students to explore their family heritage. Use the creator as a guide to family characters within novels with complicated storylines or create a family tree to trace European kings' and queens' lineage. If students don't have images to upload, use an avatar creator such as the Free Anime Avatar Maker, reviewed here, or Bitmoji, reviewed here, to create a likeness to upload. Extend learning by asking students to interview living relatives using an audio file creator such as Vocaroo, reviewed here, to record conversations. Add additional information to a timeline created using Timeline Maker, reviewed here, that offers a simple format for creating personalized timelines. Include students' completed family trees, interviews, timelines, and additional research information in a multimedia presentation like Sway, reviewed here.

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Whimsical Mind Maps - Whimsical

Grades
4 to 12
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Whimsical Mind Maps is a visual presentation tool offering concept maps in a variety of formats. Create appealing flowcharts, wireframes, sticky notes, and mind maps through the use...more
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Whimsical Mind Maps is a visual presentation tool offering concept maps in a variety of formats. Create appealing flowcharts, wireframes, sticky notes, and mind maps through the use of templates and intuitive editing tools. After signing in to your account, begin creating your mind map by choosing a template for your chosen format. Each format includes a dashboard with items to add and edit onto your page. Select the sharing icon to enable and disable features, including password protection, allowing comments, and creating a shareable link. Be sure to view the examples found on the site, including the interactive model on the home page to get a feel for the features available to you. Free accounts offer you the ability to create up to 4 free boards.

tag(s): charts and graphs (193), mind map (25)

In the Classroom

Assign students to "map" out a chapter or story. Assign groups to create study guides using this tool. Use this tool for literature activities, research projects, social studies, or science topics. Use this to create family trees or food pyramids in family and consumer science. Have students collaborate (online) to create group mind maps or review charts before tests on a given subject. Have students organize any concepts you study. They can color-code concepts to show what they understand, wonder, and question. Have students map out a story, plotline, or plan for the future. Students can also map out a step-by-step process (such as a life cycle or how to solve an equation). Use the wireframe option to create interesting images mimicking screen displays found on computers, phones, and mobile devices. Enhance and extend student learning by asking students to include their "map" as part of a final presentation created using a multimedia presentation tool like Wakelet, reviewed here, or as part of a digital book created using Book Creator, reviewed here.

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FlexClip - Patrick Ma

Grades
K to 12
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Upload your images and videos to FlexClip to create quick and easy videos. Create your account, then use the storyboard to add pictures and videos from your computer. Customize your...more
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Upload your images and videos to FlexClip to create quick and easy videos. Create your account, then use the storyboard to add pictures and videos from your computer. Customize your video by uploading a music file or record using your computer's microphone. When finished, save your video and download to your device.

tag(s): editing (80), images (273), video (271)

In the Classroom

Use FlexClip even with young students to create videos for many topics. Ask students to share pictures demonstrating the before and after of a science experiment, then add student voice recordings to explain the experiment. Modify and enhance learning by asking students to use FlexClip to create short videos, then include them with other images and videos as part of a multimedia project or digital portfolio. Seesaw, reviewed here, is an easy to use tool for creating and personalizing digital portfolios. The following tools are great for transforming learning and creating multimedia projects: (click on the tool name to access the review): Adobe Spark for K-12, Animatron, Sway, and Beautiful.AI.

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PeoplePlotr - PeoplePlotr.com

Grades
7 to 12
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Create interactive family trees or hierarchy representations using the drag and drop features of PeoplePlotr. Features include options for embedding images, videos, and text within...more
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Create interactive family trees or hierarchy representations using the drag and drop features of PeoplePlotr. Features include options for embedding images, videos, and text within plots. After registering using your email, use your dashboard to begin. In addition to the visual tree, options include adding and viewing information in a timeline format. Follow the steps to fill in the information (only the title is required) and choose the link to create your plot. From this step start adding information to your family tree. Share with others using your unique URL. PeoplePlotr limits free accounts to one plot with 15 people and no embedding on your website.

tag(s): family (60), graphic organizers (43), timelines (54)

In the Classroom

If your students have a school email address use this information to sign individuals up to create their own plot. View examples on this site to get inspiration for creating plots in several different ways. Create family trees of story characters to help visualize family legacies, have students create a hierarchy chart representing government leaders, or have students research their own family tree. After completing timelines, ask students to use the information learned to enhance their learning by creating an explainer video sharing their timeline or hierarchy details. Biteable, reviewed here, is a very easy to use video creation tool.

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ERDPlus - ERDPlus

Grades
4 to 12
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ERDPlus is a free and simple diagram maker that includes options for creating several different types of schema models. Create your diagrams with or without free signup. Free accounts...more
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ERDPlus is a free and simple diagram maker that includes options for creating several different types of schema models. Create your diagrams with or without free signup. Free accounts offer you the ability to save documents onsite and options to easily share documents with others. Once you begin using the diagram maker, use the dashboard to choose the style of diagram to create or import a document from your computer. Use the tools to add information, connect items, and move information around to suit your needs. When finished, save to your account or your computer.

tag(s): charts and graphs (193), mind map (25)

In the Classroom

Use ERDPlus to create classroom models and diagrams for any subject. Before assigning to all students, choose a few tech-savvy students to learn how to use this site and provide tutoring help for those who need it. Consider having a few students create a video explanation using Biteable, reviewed here, using the provided templates. Create diagrams for students to "map" out a chapter or story. Assign groups to create study guides using this tool. Use this tool for literature activities, research projects, social studies, or science topics. Use this to create family trees or food pyramids in family and consumer science. Have students collaborate (online) to create group mind maps or review charts before tests on a given subject. Have students organize any concepts you study. Have students map out a story, plotline, or plan for the future. Students can also map out a step-by-step process (such as a life cycle or how to solve an equation).
 

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Kapwing - Eric Lu and Julia Enthoven

Grades
K to 12
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Kapwing is an online video and photo editor for creating and sharing short videos for personal and online use. Use Kapwing directly from the website without downloads or passwords....more
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Kapwing is an online video and photo editor for creating and sharing short videos for personal and online use. Use Kapwing directly from the website without downloads or passwords. Among the many available features this site offers are tools for adding text, including filters, change images to video, and much more. Begin by choosing a tool from the drop-down box at the top of the homepage. Upload media from your computer using the provided boxes and choose from options to personalize content as you wish. When complete, save to your computer or create an account with Kapwing to store videos and photos.

tag(s): editing (80), images (273), social media (43), video (271)

In the Classroom

Use Kapwing even with young students to add text to any image, create collages, and edit video. Ask students to create a collage with two pictures demonstrating the before and after of a science experiment. Add text to images to create captions when sharing class projects. Ask students to use Kapwing to create short videos, then include them with other images and videos as part of a multimedia project or digital portfolio. Seesaw, reviewed here, is an easy to use tool for creating digital portfolios for younger students. Possibly use Pathbrite, reviewed here, for middle and high school students

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mindmaps - David Richard

Grades
4 to 12
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Develop mindmaps and concept maps with this easy to use tool that works both on and offline. Follow the tutorial to start and learn the basic tools within the app. ...more
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Develop mindmaps and concept maps with this easy to use tool that works both on and offline. Follow the tutorial to start and learn the basic tools within the app. Use the site's dashboard to select and change font size and color, add and move branches, and move your mindmap anywhere on the grid. When finished, save your mindmap to your computer or cloud storage sites like Google Drive using the provided links. Choose the Export as Image option to download your mindmap as a PNG file.

tag(s): charts and graphs (193), mind map (25)

In the Classroom

Assign students to "map" out a chapter or story. Assign groups to create study guides using this tool. Use this tool for literature activities, research projects, social studies, or science topics. Use this to create family trees or food pyramids in family and consumer science. Have students collaborate (online) to create group mind maps or review charts before tests on a given subject. Have students organize any concepts you study. They can color code concepts to show what they understand, wonder, and question. Have students map out a story, plot line, or plan for the future. Students can also map out a step-by-step process (such as a life cycle or how to solve an equation). Include your mind maps with multimedia projects to create an online book. Book Creator, reviewed here, offers many options for creating digital books including video, images, text, and more.
 

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DesignCap Poster Creator - PearlMountain

Grades
K to 12
3 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Create free posters in three easy steps without registration using DesignCap. Begin by selecting a template from the many offerings on the site. Use the tools to edit your posters ...more
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Create free posters in three easy steps without registration using DesignCap. Begin by selecting a template from the many offerings on the site. Use the tools to edit your posters features including text, images, and background. Upload your images to use or choose from clipart available in DesignCap. When finished, share to social media using the provided link, download to your computer, or print your project. Registration isn't required; however, it gives you the ability to save projects to your online account.

tag(s): images (273), posters (45)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of this free resource to create posters for any topic. Have students design poster book covers to summarize stories read. Include posters with student blogging projects as part of an online portfolio. Replace paper pen by asking students to write blogs sharing information learned using a site like Edublog, reviewed here. Edublog offers tools for creating class and individual blogs. Extend student learning and classroom technology use by asking older students to create posters of different cultures and countries, then include them in a virtual field trip using Google My Maps, reviewed here. With Google My Maps students can embed images and videos onto their pointers and shapes for any given location. Challenge science and math students to create posters demonstrating an understanding of topics using their own words and images.

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Biteable - Biteable

Grades
K to 12
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Biteable claims to be "the world's simplest video maker," and they may be right. Choose from many animated features, color combinations, and photo scenes to personalize videos. The...more
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Biteable claims to be "the world's simplest video maker," and they may be right. Choose from many animated features, color combinations, and photo scenes to personalize videos. The wide assortment of templates include options to create ads, infographics, and more. Drag and drop images, add text and choose colors and sound onto the video timeline. When complete, publish and share on YouTube or social media sites with the provided links. Free accounts offer 1GB of storage and five video projects per month.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): digital storytelling (145), multimedia (51), video (271)

In the Classroom

Add Biteable to your technology toolbox for use with multimedia reports and presentations. Learn how to create and personalize videos together by sharing the site on your interactive whiteboard or projector and demonstrating the available features. As students become familiar with Biteable, ask them to use this site to create videos explaining and showing specific features available on the website. Be sure to have students create a storyboard to help make the video creation go smoothly. Do this either with paper and pencil or try using a digital storyboard like the Story Map, reviewed here, or SuperNotecard, reviewed here, where you can turn your notes into a storyboard! Use this site to create introductory videos for any classroom content. Replace the paper version of a travel brochure, ask students to use the travel templates on this site to make a video sharing information about any location. Instead of having students write a report on healthy living use the healthy living infographic template to share interesting facts and information about nutrition and wellness. In your finance class use the electronics templates and ask students to create a video advertising a product or a new store. This site is incredibly versatile and offers options for use in any classroom setting!

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Genial.ly - Genial.ly

Grades
K to 12
1 Favorites 1  Comments
   
Create impressive, interactive posters, images, infographics, charts, presentations and anything else you can think of with Genial.ly. Easily insert maps, surveys, video, audio and...more
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Create impressive, interactive posters, images, infographics, charts, presentations and anything else you can think of with Genial.ly. Easily insert maps, surveys, video, audio and more. Select from a multitude of templates! Genial.ly is an all-in-one tool that will soon become your go-to tool for creating visual content. Register for the free account with email, or a Google or Facebook account, and then start creating (as many visuals as you'd like)! Share creations on different social networks, copying and pasting a link, using an HTML code to embed it in a website/blog, or sending it directly by e-mail. Click Learn at the top to find FAQs, a blog, and video tutorials. The videos reside on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, the videos may not be viewable.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): charts and graphs (193), digital storytelling (145), images (273), infographics (50), interactive stories (27), multimedia (51), posters (45), video (271)

In the Classroom

Click Create to find a category from which you want your students to work; present several using a projector or on an interactive whiteboard. Show the interactivity to students. Then, create one together as a class to try out the tools (don't forget to name it). Keep it simple or add all the bells and whistles. Preview as you work or return later to complete and publish. Of course, you will want to model and teach appropriate documentation of any sources of images and media you use and to use copyrighted works legally.

There are limitless ideas for using Genial.ly in the classroom! Here are just a few: Ask students to create their own Genial.ly as a new way to assess understanding: you could even provide links to images and raw materials they may use (especially if you have students who need extra scaffolding), and they can work with them to sequence, caption, and write about the pieces. After a first project where you possibly suggest "building blocks," the sky is the limit on what they can do. Even the very young can make suggestions as you "create" a whole-class interactive together using a projector on an interactive whiteboard. Consider making a new project for each unit you teach so students can "recap" by visiting the presentation long after the unit ends. Save student projects from year to year as examples, possibly even awarding prizes for "best" examples. Have upper elementary or middle school students create an interactive project to help "little buddies" two or three grades lower to understand a concept.

Comments

This is a wonderful interactive poster replacement for Glogster. Shirley, CA, Grades: 6 - 12

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Curating Change - Global Fund For Women

Grades
6 to 12
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Curating Change offers a showcase of women from different cultures telling stories of how they have made a positive change in their life or community. Each featured woman also includes...more
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Curating Change offers a showcase of women from different cultures telling stories of how they have made a positive change in their life or community. Each featured woman also includes a curated exhibition of inspiring stories from other women. Examples include filmmakers discussing their fight against gender barriers, health workers taking on poverty, and activists showcasing those that speak out for change for themselves and future generations. Scroll down the page to find similarly curated exhibitions from 2011 through 2013. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable.

tag(s): women (104), womens suffrage (30)

In the Classroom

Introduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students explore this site independently or in small groups. Enhance learning by having students create a simple infographic to share their findings using Easel.ly, reviewed here . Alternatively, have students use Fakebook, reviewed here, to create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook from the perspective of one of the featured women or someone that they have helped.

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Buzzsprout - Tom Rossi

Grades
K to 12
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Buzzsprout offers free, easy to use, podcast hosting. Sign up to receive two hours of hosting per month. Uploads remain available for 90 days. Buzzsprout's dashboard walks you through...more
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Buzzsprout offers free, easy to use, podcast hosting. Sign up to receive two hours of hosting per month. Uploads remain available for 90 days. Buzzsprout's dashboard walks you through the process of creating and sharing podcasts and provides information on the time remaining in your current cycle. Copy and paste one line of code to include your podcast directly on any website. Attractive features include scheduling episodes for a specific date and time, adding links, lists, chapter markers, and a "Support the show" link to your podcasts.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): podcasts (61)

In the Classroom

Even if you aren't ready to create podcasts, share the How To Make a Podcast page with your students with excellent tips for creating any type of speaking presentation. Create regular or special podcasts to share on your class web page or wiki to read in class AND from home, adding a touch of blended learning to your classroom! Have readers (perhaps older buddies) enhance their learning by building fluency and recording selected passages for your non-readers. Don't forget to have them listen and critique their podcast! Launch a service project for your fifth or sixth graders to record stories for the kindergarten to use in their reading and listening center. Have students create "you are there" recordings as "eyewitnesses" to historical or current events. Make a weekly class podcast, with students taking turns writing and sharing the "Class News." Have students create radio advertisements for concepts studied in class (Buy Dynamic DNA!). Have students write and record their own stories or poetry in dramatic readings. Language students or beginning readers could record their fluency by reading passages and listening to themselves. Allow parents to hear their child's progress reading aloud, etc. Compare world language, speech articulation, or reading fluency at two points during the year. Have your Shakespeare students record a soliloquy. Write and record a poem for Father's or Mother's Day (or other special events) and send the URL as a gift to that special person. If you have gifted students who lean toward the dramatic, this tool is simple enough for them to create dramatic mini-casts without needing a video camera.

Comments

The podcasting 101 information is incredibly helpful for anyone wishing to begin podcasting. It also establishes tips that can be helpful for any speaker (as the description says). Patricia, NJ, Grades: 6 - 12

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Foodista - Foodista

Grades
3 to 12
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Foodista is a community of food lovers who share and exchange all things food! Find recipes and cooking ideas, food news, holiday ideas, health and nutrition, video directions, question...more
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Foodista is a community of food lovers who share and exchange all things food! Find recipes and cooking ideas, food news, holiday ideas, health and nutrition, video directions, question and answers, blogs, and an RSS feed. Add a recipe or share on social media.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): cooking (35), holidays (143), nutrition (167)

In the Classroom

Capture every student's heart (or stomach) with Foodista! Introduce on your interactive whiteboard or projector for learning how to write, read, and follow directions. This site is sure to make some stomachs grumble and some mouths water! In math class, explore or multiply fractions used in recipes. In science, FACS, or health class, explore the nutrition side of Foodista. Help students gain a better understanding of diabetes or food allergies. Use to create food for special celebrations of literature or in social studies as you study cultures around the world. Allow students to choose food for special class celebrations. In your FACS class, use the blog area as a weekly update for new recipe, home care, and nutrition ideas.

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The Legacy Project - Susan V. Bosak

Grades
3 to 12
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The Legacy Project is a big picture learning project for adults, youth, and children. There are three categories to the program where you develop your legacy: personal, interpersonal,...more
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The Legacy Project is a big picture learning project for adults, youth, and children. There are three categories to the program where you develop your legacy: personal, interpersonal, and community. Explore your connection with others in your life and create closer relationships between generations. Find out how you can help make a better world by addressing issues like building stronger communities and caring for the environment. The Legacy Project was inspired by the award-winning bestseller, Dream, and is a content rich site that explores all aspects of the hopes and dreams we have for ourselves and our world. You can identify and reach for your goals to make a difference in your own life and our world.

tag(s): communities (43), crafts (42), cross cultural understanding (148), environment (298), writing (355)

In the Classroom

The Legacy Project's free online activities for all ages include creative crafts, art projects, games, self-assessments, reproducible pages, and even lesson ideas with curriculum connections for teachers. There are also free guides, tips, and feature articles. Resources can be used individually or grouped to create a themed set that run the gammit from literacy to family, history, or science. There are even free online certificates you can download!

Challenge your students to think about questions like: What are your goals and what would you like to be, do, and learn? How can you achieve your goals? What can you learn about your own hopes and dreams and those of others? How can you think globally and act locally? How can we better understand other people and cultures that live in our communities or a whole continent away from us? The Legacy Project combines practical, classroom-tested ideas and research-based insights with a little fun and inspiration to inform and inspire all ages - children, teens, and adults. Using resources like the Dream book, students explore the world around them and their role in it - past, present, and future.

The Legacy Project's annual Listen to a Life Essay Contest brings generations in family and community closer and promotes the importance and uniqueness of inter-generational relationships. Students between the ages of 8-18 years interview a grandparent or "grand-friend" about their life and write an essay. This also opens the door for so many creative projects such as photo essays, (using their own digital images or finding ones that are legally permitted to be reproduced). Have students create an annotated image including text boxes and related links using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here.

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