TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of May 21, 2023

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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My Social Media Life - Common Sense Education

Grades
6 to 9
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This lesson provides resources for guiding middle-school students in learning about the role of social media in their lives, especially the effect of social media on relationships....more
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This lesson provides resources for guiding middle-school students in learning about the role of social media in their lives, especially the effect of social media on relationships. The lesson plan takes approximately forty-five minutes to complete; however, an alternative suggestion shares a fifteen-minute quick activity. Resources provided include a slide presentation, video, student handouts, and family take-home information. Also available is the correlation to Common Core ELA, CASEL, AASL, and ISTE Standards. You will need to sign in to access this free lesson and resources.

tag(s): digital citizenship (90), social and emotional learning (83), social media (54)

In the Classroom

Bookmark and save this lesson plan for use with lessons on media literacy, social media, or social-emotional learning. Engage students by creating visual mindmaps or flow charts using Coggle, reviewed here. For example, create a mind map with different social platforms and ask students to share the pros and cons of using each tool. Use a flow chart to share suggestions on how to address common issues that occur through the use of social media and relationships. As a final activity, ask students to create interesting video presentations using Typito, reviewed here. Typito's drag and drop interface includes free templates, drag and drop features, and the ability to personalize and share content easily.
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Along - Gradient Learning

Grades
6 to 12
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Along is an online tool for providing digital check-ins and reflection activities with students using audio, video, or text. Share a question with some or all students to encourage...more
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Along is an online tool for providing digital check-ins and reflection activities with students using audio, video, or text. Share a question with some or all students to encourage making connections and check in on student wellness. Students select an option to share their responses, and the teacher views reflections within the Along dashboard. Follow up with students as desired to continue the conversation or to make personal connections with all students. Use the tips and content provided by Along to select research-based questions designed to help students build life skills and confidence. Teachers with students under 13 years of age will need to send home a letter of consent, which Along has provided in Spanish and English and for print or to email. There is also a code of conduct which all students must agree to. To find this information and the forms - from the home page scroll down to and click Code of Conduct from the bottom menu.

tag(s): classroom management (128), communication (136), social and emotional learning (83), Teacher Utilities (148)

In the Classroom

Along makes it easy for you to implement this tool into your classroom with their many free resources. Resources include guides to introducing Along to students and fellow educators. Share the privacy information guide with parents as you begin using this tool. Begin by using the customizable calendar as a method for planning to introduce and use Along. Consider using the information found on the site to create and share a presentation about this product using Google Slides, reviewed here, or by creating a short video using Adobe Creative Cloud Express Video Maker reviewed here. Be sure to show students how to prepare for their responses. If you find some students are reluctant to use one of the modes, for instance, the video, work with that student to help them feel comfortable. Uses for this tool are only limited by your imagination! Check-in with students during long projects or reports to see where they are in the process and if they have any frustrations, check-in after a science lab to see who has questions, ask students at the end of a project or lab what they would do differently next time. Check-in with Language arts book groups to see how students are doing with the novel, their group, the project at the end, etc.
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WellCheq - Jodi Miller

Grades
K to 12
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WellCheq is a digital application that provides a daily wellness check-in for students. Students log in each day and answer two questions - how are you feeling today, and how ...more
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WellCheq is a digital application that provides a daily wellness check-in for students. Students log in each day and answer two questions - how are you feeling today, and how are you doing overall? This information is then immediately available to the teacher or counselor. WellCheq tracks both individual and class data over the short and long term. Students reporting a three (out of five) or lower are identified with an email to the teacher and go on the Students of Concern page. Students log in through the student portal to provide responses and access suggested resources. There is a link for students to ask for help using the "Cheq on me" button. Create and use a teacher account to add and manage classrooms and access reports. Reports include daily information, students of concern, as well as longitudinal class and student reports.

tag(s): emotions (47), identity (28), social and emotional learning (83), Teacher Utilities (148)

In the Classroom

Share WellCheq with your school counselors for possible use in monitoring the mental wellness of students. If your school doesn't want to use a program such as this, consider other possibilities for sharing wellness tips with students and parents and share resources for obtaining help when needed. Find resources at the TeachersFirst Resources for Self-Identity Special Topics Page.

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5 Powerful lesson ideas to help students find self-identity - Lucie Renard

Grades
5 to 12
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Encourage students to reflect upon and understand their self-identity with five lessons adapted from Katja Schipperheijn's book, Digital Citizen. Lesson activities encourage students...more
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Encourage students to reflect upon and understand their self-identity with five lessons adapted from Katja Schipperheijn's book, Digital Citizen. Lesson activities encourage students to share opinions, consider their interests and expertise, create an avatar of themselves, and introduce themselves to others using only 250 characters.

tag(s): character education (75), identity (28), professional development (394)

In the Classroom

Use ideas found in this article to encourage students to reflect upon their self-identity and reflect upon how they want to be viewed by others. The fifth lesson suggests using Bitmoji, reviewed here, to build avatars to reflect self-image. Incorporate this activity with the 250 character response to extend learning and tie together students' physical identity ideas with their concept of what makes them unique. Use Canva Edu, reviewed here, and have students upload their Bitmoji and response to create a flyer that introduces them to others.

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Promoting A Sense Of Self: Experiences And Activities - Virtual Lab School

Grades
K to 1
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Learn how to support and encourage children by understanding anti-bias teaching methods that recognize and support individual student needs with this self-paced professional development...more
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Learn how to support and encourage children by understanding anti-bias teaching methods that recognize and support individual student needs with this self-paced professional development lesson. Learning activities include embracing diversity, multiple social identities, and embracing character through understanding the six pillars of character education. This lesson also includes strategies for strengthening family relationships and ideas for developing student interests through short and long-term projects.

tag(s): bias (22), bullying (49), character education (75), difficult conversations (58), diversity (38), identity (28), professional development (394)

In the Classroom

Share this lesson with your peers to use as a learning opportunity or review the included ideas to support students' identity and awareness of others' diversity. Consider sharing a link to this article with parents to help them develop skills for discussing character issues and diversity at home. Use Padlet, reviewed here, to share this article with parents and curate other information from a variety of resources to support and provide education with dealing with character education issues at home.

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Discovering My Identity Lesson Plan - Southern Poverty Law Center & Learning for Justice

Grades
3 to 7
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This standards-based lesson for upper elementary students provides directions that guide students toward understanding different identity aspects using diverse book characters using...more
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This standards-based lesson for upper elementary students provides directions that guide students toward understanding different identity aspects using diverse book characters using Marley Dias' Black Girls Books. Students work toward answering essential questions that identify similarities and differences between themselves and others and explore how stories teach us about identity. This site provides video clips, small group discussion directions, and graphic organizers to use during the lesson.

tag(s): bias (22), character education (75), difficult conversations (58), identity (28), racism (76)

In the Classroom

Include this lesson during character education lessons that teach students about racism, bias, and identity. Use Edpuzzle, reviewed here, to enhance students' viewing of the video included with the lesson. Search the YouTube portion on edpuzzle to find the video, then place the discussion questions within appropriate portions of the video. edpuzzle integrates with several learning management systems, including Canvas, reviewed here, making it easy to include your annotated video as part of a larger teaching unit. As students complete their book reviews during the lesson, use Flip, reviewed here, to create video book reviews. Use this Flip topic throughout the year to add additional book reviews for students throughout the school year. Upload the book review graphic organizer to your topic for easy access whenever students are ready to add a new review.
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SpeakUp! - Martie Gillin

Grades
5 to 12
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SpeakUp! is a non-profit organization that provides resources to support teens in developing positive relationships with adults. Their programs' focus is on encouraging teens to have...more
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SpeakUp! is a non-profit organization that provides resources to support teens in developing positive relationships with adults. Their programs' focus is on encouraging teens to have supportive conversations that help teens deal with any issues. Register for upcoming programs or learn how to become a SpeakUp! school. Be sure to check out the link to the site's resources that includes helpful guides with contact information for help with many different topics, including suicide, drug abuse, bullying, and more.

tag(s): bullying (49), cyberbullying (41), diseases (67), drugs and alcohol (27), eating disorders (7), sexuality (15), social and emotional learning (83), social media (54)

In the Classroom

Share the resource guides with parents and students on your class website to use when facing any of the covered topics. Use Padlet, reviewed here, or Wakelet, reviewed here, to curate and share helpful guides for parents and students within one collection. As you and your class discuss problems that face teens, ask students to use Canva Edu, reviewed here, to share what they learn. For example, have students create posters to display in the classroom that include the dangers of drug abuse and include tips for helping someone that displays signs of drug abuse. Ask other students to design and share infographics that include facts and figures discussing cyberbullying, along with suggestions on how to respond to bullies.
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Reading Treks: American Born Chinese - TeachersFirst

Grades
7 to 12
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TeachersFirst Reading Treks create a virtual field trip of resources about a piece of literature or text using the My Maps feature of Google Maps. This Reading Trek provides inspiration...more
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TeachersFirst Reading Treks create a virtual field trip of resources about a piece of literature or text using the My Maps feature of Google Maps. This Reading Trek provides inspiration and suggestions for using the trade book, American Born Chinese. American Born Chinese recounts the tale of three characters: Jin Wang, who moves to another area with his family to find that he's the only Chinese-American at his new school; the Monkey King, subject of one of the oldest Chinese tales; and Chin-Kee, who is typical of the negative Chinese stereotype and is destroying his cousin Danny's life. Their lives and stories meet up with an unforeseen turn in this current tale. Discover their journey to their identity and purpose in life while struggling with others' prejudices, especially how it applies to racism. Use our robust Instructional Guide with students in grades 7-12. Content correlates to Common Core Standards, ISTE Student Standards, National Core Arts Standards for Visual Arts, and National Curriculum Standards for Social Studies. Find the entire selection of Reading Treks here.

tag(s): cross cultural understanding (155), identity (28), racism (76), virtual field trips (79)

In the Classroom

Take 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 research places and events discussed in the book to create interactive timelines. Find a variety of free online timeline creation tools at located here. Using the map and locales, trace and then calculate distances for some of the locations shared. Use Google My Maps, reviewed here, to create and share custom maps.
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Coaching Boys Into Men - Futures Without Violence

Grades
4 to 12
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Coaching Boys Into Men is a prevention program for athletic coaches to teach young men healthy relationship skills and that violence doesn't equal strength. Tools include several downloads...more
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Coaching Boys Into Men is a prevention program for athletic coaches to teach young men healthy relationship skills and that violence doesn't equal strength. Tools include several downloads such as posters and step by step lessons to integrate into weekly training sessions.

tag(s): bullying (49), character education (75), difficult conversations (58), mental health (34), mentoring (6), school violence (10), social and emotional learning (83), social skills (22), sports (78)

In the Classroom

Share this program with your school's athletic coaches, physical education teachers, school counselors, and parents who coach athletic teams. Use the program locator to find nearby communities involved with the program. Invite a local coach to speak to young men in your school regarding healthy relationship skills. Extend technology use and student learning by having them create a newspaper featuring sports role models using a site such as Printing Press, reviewed here.
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Teach With Movies - TeachWithMovies.com, Inc.

Grades
3 to 12
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Hundreds of teachable movies! That's how many lesson plans or guides you'll find at Teach With Movies. Search one of the numerous categories to locate the movie, documentary, or short...more
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Hundreds of teachable movies! That's how many lesson plans or guides you'll find at Teach With Movies. Search one of the numerous categories to locate the movie, documentary, or short you want. Some of the categories are Subject Matter (and not just math, science, history, etc.), Social-Emotional Learning (themes like Ambition, Coming of Age, and many others), Appropriate Age (three through adult), and Set Up the Sub (found on the top menu under Features), just to name a few. Lessons include a general summary of the film and discussion questions with answers. Most also include a rationale for using the movie, the subjects, topics, and themes, if there is a book - a bit of background and review of it, objectives, possible problems, historical context, and more. Of course, the topics for consideration depend on the film. Sign up for the newsletter to see when there are lesson guides for the newest movies. Whether culminating a unit or introducing one, using these lessons and guides along with the video will help to make a lasting impression about your topic.

tag(s): difficult conversations (58), essays (21), movies (51), questioning (32), social and emotional learning (83), social skills (22), worksheets (70), writing (317)

In the Classroom

Movies offer an entertaining format for history and thematic studies. Use a video to add to the learning experience of students who are visual and auditory learners. Use this site to find videos in a wide range of topics to share on an interactive whiteboard or with a projector. Take advantage of the free lesson plans for classroom use. Preview the lessons before viewing and convert those that can be to a real-time discussion to engage students WHILE they watch a video! Enhance classroom learning and technology use and achieve this by setting up a backchannel chat using GoSoapBox, reviewed here. Alternatively, if you are distance or remote teaching or have a blended classroom, use VideoAnt, reviewed here, to ask questions and have students respond directly on the video.

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Big Ideas Video Series - Class Dojo

Grades
K to 8
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The Big Ideas Series, offered by ClassDojo, provides ten video topics encouraging students to explore different ways to healthy social emotional development. The videos discuss concepts...more
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The Big Ideas Series, offered by ClassDojo, provides ten video topics encouraging students to explore different ways to healthy social emotional development. The videos discuss concepts such as Empathy, Perseverance, Positive Thinking, Gratitude, Mindfulness, and more. Each topic has a series of short videos and includes a discussion guide to download for classroom use and a page with take-home questions for parent use.

tag(s): brain (55), emotions (47), empathy (26), learning styles (18), social and emotional learning (83), social skills (22)

In the Classroom

You may want to start your school year by sharing the three part video series on Empathy. Each video is five minutes and has a discussion guide. As a follow up use the Ripples of Kindness activity in small groups. Share younger students' observations on a whiteboard or poster. Older students can share their observations using a tool like Stickies, reviewed here. Dotstorming allows participants to add comments. Share other videos with a projector or on an interactive whiteboard to introduce a video each week and explore the discussion questions together. These videos could be very useful when preparing and motivating students for upcoming standardized testing or at the beginning of a school year to set a tone that everyone can learn. Include a link to videos on your class web page for parents to discuss at home with their student, and be sure to send home the take-home questions with topics to talk about.
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Radio Rookies - WNYC Public Radio

Grades
8 to 12
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Radio Rookies offers programming created by teens for teens to help in coping with the challenges of teen life. Scroll down the home page to browse through recent episodes and ...more
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Radio Rookies offers programming created by teens for teens to help in coping with the challenges of teen life. Scroll down the home page to browse through recent episodes and articles featuring difficult topics such as abuse, dating, and dealing with peers. Become a part of Radio Rookies by downloading the DIY Radio Rookies Toolkit here, featuring ideas and information for sharing your own story. Be sure to check out the features of the toolkit for videos and tip sheets with ideas for using Radio Rookies as a teaching tool. Please note - many topics discussed on this site are sensitive, and not necessarily appropriate for your class. Be sure to preview any broadcast before sharing with the class.

tag(s): adolescence (12), behavior (43), difficult conversations (58), emotions (47), radio (20), social and emotional learning (83), social skills (22)

In the Classroom

Be sure to include this site on your class webpage for students to access both in and outside of class as a resource for hearing how peers handle difficult teenage issues. Share a link with parents as a resource for them to use with their teen. Remind parents to PREVIEW! Be sure to share with your school's counselor as an excellent tool for use when working with students. Listen to episodes together with your class, and then have cooperative learning groups create podcasts discussing specific issues found in your school or classroom. Use a tool such as podOmatic, reviewed here. Before beginning the podcast, have students create a storyboard using a tool like Notepad, reviewed here. They will also need to develop a script and practice. Try using Typewrite, reviewed here, for students to write the script collaboratively. This tool allows groups to write together. All the tools mentioned in this review will augment classroom technology use.
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Happier - Nataly Kogan

Grades
3 to 12
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Share positive moments and increase your happiness! Share by describing your happy moment, upload a picture (not required), and place it in categories you create, such as working out,...more
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Share positive moments and increase your happiness! Share by describing your happy moment, upload a picture (not required), and place it in categories you create, such as working out, family, and more. Click Share to share with others, including on Twitter or Facebook. Why use categories? If you are lacking motivation for working out, viewing your positive messages from before can definitely help! Connect with others and comment on their happy moments! Read helpful tips to center you on happiness, find mini-courses, and use daily reminders to increase your happiness. Read the many articles on your journey to a happier YOU! This site/app is easy to use with today's busy lives, and interactivity is grounded in actual science.

tag(s): emotions (47), mental health (34), psychology (67), social and emotional learning (83)

In the Classroom

With testing, social pressure, and the desire to do well use Happier in class to celebrate the small steps and successes on which students should be focusing. Teach students to identify positives along the way, no matter what the test or situation's outcome. Consider asking what did you learn from the situation? Identify categories that encompass all of the student's lives and focus on finding happy moments in all areas. Be sure to use this yourself! Find the positives in every facet of your day building happiness day by day. Psychology and Sociology classes can use this as an experiment about happiness, collecting student or family data through the year.

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Child and Adolescent Mental Health Information - National Institutes of Mental Health

Grades
1 to 12
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The National Institutes of Mental Health offers this site for both public and professional audiences. It highlights characteristics and management of several mental health conditions...more
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The National Institutes of Mental Health offers this site for both public and professional audiences. It highlights characteristics and management of several mental health conditions in children and young people. There is coverage of the relationships between environment and mental health, as well as the role and appropriateness of medication for specific disorders.

tag(s): behavior (43), mental health (34)

In the Classroom

Infor your administrator about this site to possibly put it on the school website. Share this site with your fellow teachers, and tell parents about it at back-to-school night.

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