TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of Apr 18, 2021

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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Gez.la Virtual Trips - gez.la

Grades
2 to 12
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Gez.la uses open-source resources to share over 150 virtual trips around the world. Take a virtual trip to visit museums, historical places, zoos, and more from your computer. Use the...more
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Gez.la uses open-source resources to share over 150 virtual trips around the world. Take a virtual trip to visit museums, historical places, zoos, and more from your computer. Use the placemarks on the map to select a location, or use the filters to choose by type of tour or location. Choose your tour from the list for a short description of the content, then select the link to go to the virtual tour.

tag(s): virtual field trips (66)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of this site to visit places where time, money, and mileage inhibit your dreams of bringing your students into wondrous worlds. Find ways to visit where your class has never gone before. Small groups or individual students can focus on one of the tours and use it as a starting point for additional research. ENL/ESL learners will appreciate the visual tours. Reach all types of learners through a class visit. Use these virtual reality tours as a class anticipatory guide, center activity, home connection, or extra credit. Challenge your gifted students to guide their own learning. Extend learning and challenge students to create their own virtual tours using Google My Maps, reviewed here. Google My Maps includes tools for you to add routes, images, videos, and more to create virtual field trips anywhere in the world.

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Headliner Voices - Headliner

Grades
K to 12
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Headliner Voices is a text to voice app using the voices and likeness of celebrities. Type in your text up to 300 characters and choose a celebrity. The site includes ...more
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Headliner Voices is a text to voice app using the voices and likeness of celebrities. Type in your text up to 300 characters and choose a celebrity. The site includes several options, including Mark Zuckerburg, Ellen DeGeneres, and Beyonce. Click the play arrow to hear your text in the celebrity voice or choose the option to make a video. Share videos using the URL provided, download to your computer or share on Twitter.

tag(s): text to speech (16)

In the Classroom

Although the videos created using the site are rough in appearance, use them to engage students at the beginning of a lesson or as a quick summary to conclude an activity. Use with ENL/ESL students to hear text in a variety of voices. After listening to phrases spoken on the site, ask students to practice by recording on their computer or mobile device. Have students use Free Screen Recorder Online, reviewed here, to share the celebrity version of the text, then record themselves.

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Notejoy - Sachin Rekhi and Ada Chen Rekhi

Grades
K to 12
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Notejoy is a collaborative note-taking and sharing resource for teams. Create a note for a group and receive real-time updates. Features include checklists, upload of images and documents,...more
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Notejoy is a collaborative note-taking and sharing resource for teams. Create a note for a group and receive real-time updates. Features include checklists, upload of images and documents, and discussions. Quickly see who's viewed your notes and use emojis to respond or participate in threaded chats. Notejoy integrates with several major platforms including Google Drive and Microsoft Office. After signing up for Notejoy, follow the prompts to add your team name and emails of team members. Use your dashboard to create, share, and view notes. Free plans offer up to 10 members per library, up to 3 team libraries, and individual uploads up to 10 MB with a total storage of up to 100 MB.

tag(s): collaboration (82), communication (136), note taking (33), organizational skills (92)

In the Classroom

Use Notejoy to work collaboratively with your peers. Share discussions on lesson planning, field trip preparation, and professional development sessions. Take advantage of the checklists to assign and track completion of projects. Extend classroom technology use by sharing Notejoy with older students to use when working on group projects to help plan and complete tasks on time. ENL/ESL and resource teachers can use this with teachers of students who are mainstreamed.

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Immersive Reader - Microsoft

Grades
K to 12
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Immersive Reader is a free Microsoft Learning Tool available for use with several Microsoft products including OneNote, Word, Outlook, and Edge. Immersive Reader dictates text and offers...more
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Immersive Reader is a free Microsoft Learning Tool available for use with several Microsoft products including OneNote, Word, Outlook, and Edge. Immersive Reader dictates text and offers several options for personalization. Use the options to adjust the playback speed, highlight text during the audio reading, and adjust text size and spacing. Click on any word in your reading material to listen to the pronunciation. Additional options allow you to view words divided into syllables, use labels to color-code words by parts of speech, and increase the spacing between lines and letters. Use the line focus feature to highlight only small portions of text. Turn on the dictionary option to select words and view drawings representing the meanings. This tool is a wonderful resource for your special needs students and struggling readers!

tag(s): adhd (27), differentiation (63), disabilities (25), dyslexia (10), Microsoft (65), reading comprehension (123), Special Needs (45), text to speech (16)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of the many features included with Immersive Reader for any classroom use. You may need to discuss downloading this product with your school's IT department; however, it is well worth the effort. This product is especially helpful for ENL/ESL students and students needing additional help with reading. Use the language options for students to hear and view text in their native language. Use Immersive Reader to help students with Dyslexia or ADHD to decode and focus on the text by using the options included. Upload classroom materials for students to use for help in understanding difficult text.

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Academic Word Finder - Achieve the Core

Grades
4 to 12
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The Academic Word Finder identifies academic vocabulary (tier 2) words found in any text. Register using email to create an account before beginning. Copy and paste any text you want...more
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The Academic Word Finder identifies academic vocabulary (tier 2) words found in any text. Register using email to create an account before beginning. Copy and paste any text you want to analyze, (the site recommends starting with two to three paragraphs) and select your grade level. The Word Finder identifies the vocabulary found in the text and provides additional context with grade range, part of speech, meaning, and an example sentence. Email or print the results using links found on the site. Each entry is automatically saved to your Achieve the Core account for future reference.

tag(s): parts of speech (42), vocabulary (231), vocabulary development (87)

In the Classroom

Use the Academic Word Finder to introduce difficult portions of text before reading. Display the results on your interactive whiteboard or with a projector to review with students. This site is perfect for use with special needs or ENL/ESL students to break down difficult content into smaller, understandable portions. Use this site to identify vocabulary words then create online games for student practice. Bamboozle, reviewed here, offers several options for creating games for two teams. Use the Word Finder to choose vocabulary to include when creating interactive lessons for students. Vizia, reviewed here, includes tools for creating interactive video lessons with embedded documents and quizzes.

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LyricsTraining - LyricsTraining.com

Grades
4 to 12
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Learn a language through favorite music videos with LyricsTraining. This very engaging site offers an extensive collection of videos in several genres. Choose from top lyrics to begin...more
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Learn a language through favorite music videos with LyricsTraining. This very engaging site offers an extensive collection of videos in several genres. Choose from top lyrics to begin or scroll through the home page to view new lyrics. Select a language to narrow down choices. Once you select a video, choose from four different levels - the hardest requires you to fill in all the words of the song! Choose also to fill in the blanks or select responses from the four provided options. Registration isn't required; however, it allows you to save favorites and create your own customized exercises. If your district blocks YouTube, then the videos may not be viewable.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): DAT device agnostic tool (166), french (70), german (44), italian (26), japanese (44), portuguese (18), spanish (94)

In the Classroom

Ways to use this site are limited only by your imagination! Share with ENL/ESL learners for practice in English. The many choices on this site assure that all viewers will find music to enjoy. Foreign language learners will love practicing their new language using options on the site. Be sure to share a link on your class website and school computers for practice at home and during independent work time. Use this site as a 5-minute transition at the beginning or end of class. Register on the site and create customized exercises to meet the needs of your students, or let them create practice activities for fellow class members.

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Classroomscreen - Laurens Koppers

Grades
K to 12
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Classroomscreen is a background utility for use with interactive whiteboards or projector screens. Choose from circles at the bottom of the screen to add 13 widgets including a random...more
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Classroomscreen is a background utility for use with interactive whiteboards or projector screens. Choose from circles at the bottom of the screen to add 13 widgets including a random name picker, text, timer, and clock. Drag items to place them on the screen as desired. You can use Classroomsceen without signing up, but will get more features, for free, if you create and account. There is also a premium version, but this review is only for the free versions.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): classroom management (139), emotions (44), functions (51), iwb (32), social and emotional learning (56), Teacher Utilities (114), time (90)

In the Classroom

Use Classroomscreen on your interactive whiteboard for quick access to many commonly used tools. Add to student computers for access to a calculator and text box for notes. ENL/ESL teachers will enjoy the multi-language feature, set it up under Personalize. Use the different backgrounds as inspiration for creative writing projects.

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Listenwise - Monica Brady-Myerov

Grades
6 to 12
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Listenwise has podcasts and public radio broadcasts for use in advancing literacy and learning skills. Register on Listenwise using your email to access your teacher dashboard and to...more
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Listenwise has podcasts and public radio broadcasts for use in advancing literacy and learning skills. Register on Listenwise using your email to access your teacher dashboard and to begin exploring the site. Search for lessons on any topic or browse through current events. Use the tab at the top of the page to browse by subject. Choose any resource to listen to the story; most topics are less than 10 minutes. Scroll down the page to find comprehension questions and themes for classroom use. Add any lessons to your favorites. Use the provided link to share with students or add to your Google Classroom.

tag(s): adhd (27), authors (97), biographies (86), listening (70), literacy (84), literature (220), podcasts (62), poetry (180)

In the Classroom

Bookmark Listenwise for use throughout the year in all subjects. Share lessons with students as a flipped learning experience. Have students listen to the broadcast before class, then ask students to discuss their thoughts and answer the comprehension questions using a video tool such as Flipgrid, reviewed here. This site is perfect for use with ENL/ESL and special education students as it allows the opportunity to listen to information as many times as necessary for understanding.

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Speechnotes - Speechlogger & TTSReader

Grades
K to 12
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Speechnotes provides a distraction-free, easy to use speech to text notepad for use with Chrome browsers. Just click on the microphone to begin speaking. Be sure to view the hints ...more
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Speechnotes provides a distraction-free, easy to use speech to text notepad for use with Chrome browsers. Just click on the microphone to begin speaking. Be sure to view the hints for inserting punctuation. When finished, email or print your document. Saving options allow you to upload files to Google Drive or download as a text file. This tool is for speech to text, not text to speech.

tag(s): communication (136), speech (70), writing (283)

In the Classroom

Speechnotes is a very versatile tool, for students, parents, and teachers alike. Bypass poor typing skills, dysgraphia, dyslexia, and physical disabilities. Use this tool to create emails, documents, or anything requiring typed text. Use in your writing class so students can get their thoughts into text without having to also think about typing. Be sure they edit their work. Use when you are in a hurry with emails requiring long text. Use for your newsletters or family emails. Share this on your class website and at Back to School Night. Emerging literacy students will enjoy the success they have with their oral language into written word. Improve content and forget about mechanics of writing or typing. Focus in on grammar and mechanics after seeing the recognized mistakes. Include this website on every toolbar and as a favorite on your class web page. ENL/ESL students can speak English, play it back, and correct it until it "sounds right" and expresses their ideas correctly.

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pechaflickr - Alan Levine, cogdog productions

Grades
1 to 12
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Use this delightful tool to flip through 20 Flickr pictures. Every image is on the screen for only 20 seconds. Advanced options allow for changing the time and the number ...more
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Use this delightful tool to flip through 20 Flickr pictures. Every image is on the screen for only 20 seconds. Advanced options allow for changing the time and the number of images. See if you can build a story from the pictures with this entertaining tool.

tag(s): acting (17), images (254), speaking (21), speeches (19)

In the Classroom

What a delightful tool to use for impromptu speeches in any class or improvisation in a drama class. Consider uploading images for your curriculum topic to Flickr, reviewed here, and creating a specific tag or tags for the images, and then use pechaflickr as a review tool. Pechaflickr can be a great lesson starter, particularly on those dreary days when kids don't want to work. For lower level kids, it is a brain exercise for such things as an alphabet game (which is more difficult than it first seems!). In an ELA or ENL/ESL class have students create a complete sentence for as many pictures as they can, trying to improve the number of sentences written each time, or they can choose one of the sentences to create a story.

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Add Text - FlamingText.com Pty Ltd.

Grades
4 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Add text to any image or photo, using a web browser or smartphone, and share with no registration. Choose images from one of seven categories or upload your own. Change ...more
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Add text to any image or photo, using a web browser or smartphone, and share with no registration. Choose images from one of seven categories or upload your own. Change the color of the text or elect to add more text. Share using FaceBook, Twitter, Google+ (available with G Suite), or the URL given. At the time of this review, all images in the Gallery were appropriate for the classroom. However, we recommend to preview the images before you share with younger students.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): creativity (90), DAT device agnostic tool (166), digital storytelling (129), editing (80), images (254)

In the Classroom

Use Add Text to add captions to images to create memes or posters for your bulletin boards. Use this easy tool with students during back to school time as a way for them to get to know each other. Have students upload a picture of themselves doing their favorite activity and label it with amusing text or a favorite quote (or song lyrics?). Have them upload images that represent their interests and character traits. Print the images with text for a back to school bulletin board. Use after a field trip for students to write captions on the photos they took. Be sure to share the photos on your class webpage, blog, or wiki. Haven't started blogging yet? Check out TeachersFirst's Blog Basics. For other uses, have students practice new words in a world language class by labeling and identifying images in that language. Help ENL/ESL students learn English by labeling the images. Create writing prompts using several annotated images. Have students create annotated images to explain key terms in science class. In ELA class, make homophone or vocabulary images to show the correct word along with a picture that explains it.

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Learn English with Jokes and Riddles - Jacob Richman

Grades
K to 12
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Everyone loves a good joke or riddle, and you do not need any bells and whistles to get one across. At this site find ten categories and over 300 jokes ...more
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Everyone loves a good joke or riddle, and you do not need any bells and whistles to get one across. At this site find ten categories and over 300 jokes and riddles all free to use. Enjoy the jokes sequentially, choose a category, or take your chances with a random pick. All jokes and riddles are suitable for all age groups.

tag(s): ELL/ESL (16), humor (15), riddles (14)

In the Classroom

Jokes and riddles make excellent language exercises, and kids love them. Once the students have guessed the answer, use the sentences for grammar practice by identifying parts of speech, subject and predicate, and even diagramming. Younger students and ENL/ESL students can learn new vocabulary words, too. The twist and/or play on words will surely attract your gifted students. Once you have gone through several of these, encourage students to create their own and share with the class.

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