TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of Sep 27, 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 go to the Featured Sites Archive

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NASA Science - NASA

Grades
7 to 12
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NASA Science is the home base for sharing science news, resources, and information from the first-most science authority, NASA. Choose from many different areas to explore this comprehensive...more
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NASA Science is the home base for sharing science news, resources, and information from the first-most science authority, NASA. Choose from many different areas to explore this comprehensive site. Browse the home page for an overview of recent additions that include the latest tweets, countdown clocks, and Science by the Numbers. Dig deeper by choosing specific portions of the site including Science Topics and Science News. If your school blocks YouTube the videos may not be viewable.

tag(s): earth (206), explorers (71), solar system (125), space (233), STEM (217), sun (74)

In the Classroom

Become acquainted with the information shared on this site to use within your current lessons on space and science. View videos together on your interactive whiteboard or have students view videos at home and share questions and their thoughts in class. Include information from this site with other web resources to share with students. Use a bookmarking site like SearchTeam, reviewed here, to share online resources collaboratively. In addition to saving bookmarks, SearchTeam allows you to add comments to saved resources. Work together as a class to create resources for researching science topics. Instead of just watching videos, increase and enhance student learning through the use of a site such as playposit, reviewed here. playposit offers tools for adding both student and teacher comments to online videos. Use this resource to point out important information, ask critical questions, and challenge student thinking. Instead of assessing student learning of your science topic through tests or research projects, offer students the opportunity to share learning by creating their own game based on their research using a game-creation tool like Scratch, reviewed here.

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SCALE Science Education - Stanford University

Grades
6 to 8
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SCALE Science Education offers performance-based science lessons for middle schoolers correlated to Next Generation Science Standards. Each of the three resources includes a complete...more
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SCALE Science Education offers performance-based science lessons for middle schoolers correlated to Next Generation Science Standards. Each of the three resources includes a complete set of materials for teachers and students; some also include slide presentations. In addition to lessons, materials also have links to optional resources incorporating literacy skills and assessments.

tag(s): adaptations (18), biodiversity (34), cells (103), chemicals (51), climate change (71), earth (206), ecosystems (86), energy (203), genealogy (9), genetics (89), matter (64), oceans (167), solar system (125), space (233)

In the Classroom

Save yourself a little time with these free units and include them with your current teaching materials. Also, take advantage of the site's free webinar introducing the materials and how to use them in the classroom. Instead of using written journals throughout your unit, ask students to replace these by keeping online journals with Microsoft Word or Google Documents: alternatively have students use a blog tool such as Telegra.ph, reviewed here. This blog creator requires no registration. With Telegra.ph have students click on an icon to upload related images, add YouTube or Vimeo, or Twitter links. Throughout the lessons ask students to highlight and share important information, add annotations, and add links to additional information. As you add resources for students, use Wakelet, reviewed here, to share information on your website or blog. Ask students to enhance their learning and create personal Wakelets including images from projects and their journal entries. As a final project, have students extend their learning by creating an explainer video of their activities using a video creation tool like Typito, reviewed here. Typito includes a broad range of editing tools in an easy to use format for creating video explainers.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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NASA Image and Video Library - NASA

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K to 12
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Do you need "out of this world" images? NASA provides images, video, and audio for non-commercial use, free. Browse through the newest uploads or most popular items to get an ...more
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Do you need "out of this world" images? NASA provides images, video, and audio for non-commercial use, free. Browse through the newest uploads or most popular items to get an idea of included items. If looking for specific topics, use the search bar to locate material by keyword, then use the filters to narrow down by the type of content desired. All items include a link to download to your computer along with links to share by URL or with social media. Be sure to check out the Media Usage guidelines for complete details on the usage of the site's content.

tag(s): images (273), planets (136), space (233), stars (70)

In the Classroom

Include this site with your other bookmarks for images and space-related content. Use Symbaloo, reviewed here, to share all of your space bookmarks in one easy to find location. This NASA site is an excellent resource for finding images to use with creative writing prompts; display an interesting image from the site for student storytelling lessons. Exchange paper and pen writing journals, and share their writing using Edublog, reviewed here. As students learn about space topics, ask them to find an image on this site then use ThingLink, reviewed here, to enhance their learning by annotating the image with text, video, and web links to additional information. Extend student learning by having students create a video presentation about space using a video creation tool like Typito, reviewed here. Typito includes templates and additional tools to create professional-looking videos or use your own images and video.

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ESASky - European Space Agency

Grades
6 to 12
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Prepare to be amazed by the incredible features found on this interactive map of the Milky Way created with images taken during space missions. Take full advantage of the site ...more
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Prepare to be amazed by the incredible features found on this interactive map of the Milky Way created with images taken during space missions. Take full advantage of the site by viewing the tutorial video explanations (at the top far right menu) of the many features included. View different portions of the interactive by choosing the random option or select from the included target list to see targets by class such as galaxies or nebulae. Additional options allow you to zoom in and out when viewing images. The video tutorials reside on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable.

tag(s): moon (81), planets (136), space (233), stars (70)

In the Classroom

If you teach astronomy be sure to bookmark this site for easy reference at any time. Make it easy for students to find bookmarked sites like this by creating a Padlet, reviewed here, with all of your shared resources. Create columns in your Padlet to organize resources by type or topic. For example, create columns for interactives like this site, video explainers, and informative websites. Use the share button included on this site to share specific regions or resources with students for use in class or research. As students learn about different star formations, have them modify their technology use and enhance their learning as they create infographics using Canva Infographic Maker, reviewed here, to describe and share facts about their research. As a final project, have students redefine their technology use and extend their learning by including their infographic in a multimedia presentation as an alternative to a typical research paper. Adobe Spark in K-12, reviewed here, offers tools for creating web pages that include videos, photos, and slide presentations.

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Space School Musical - Jet Propulsion Laboratory California Institute of Technology

Grades
3 to 12
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Introduce students to planets, the moon, and more through this "hip-hopera" correlated to science standards. The materials are designed to be used as a whole production, or as individual...more
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Introduce students to planets, the moon, and more through this "hip-hopera" correlated to science standards. The materials are designed to be used as a whole production, or as individual stand-alone parts. Each section includes a video download and transcript. Total runtime of the videos is 30 minutes. If your school blocks YouTube, the videos may not be viewable.

tag(s): moon (81), planets (136), readers theater (14), space (233), STEM (217)

In the Classroom

Appeal to your students' love of music and drama to teach key space concepts with this site. Instead of just watching the videos, enhance learning using edpuzzle, reviewed here. Use edpuzzle to upload the video then add questions to help student comprehension or as a starter for further exploration. Have students interested in music and theater create their own production of Space School Musical (or their original space production). Allow students who aren't interested in being featured in the production to create scenery, be authors and add additional information, or help videotape and share the finished project. Enhance learning by having other students create video explainers using a video creation tool like Typito, reviewed here. Use these explainers as part of your ongoing assessment of student learning in place of a written report.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Science News for Students - Society for Science and the Public

Grades
4 to 8
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Science News for Students publishes daily science articles aimed at readers 9-14 years old. Written by science experts, this site features a variety of topics geared toward preteens....more
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Science News for Students publishes daily science articles aimed at readers 9-14 years old. Written by science experts, this site features a variety of topics geared toward preteens. Each story includes highlighted "power" words including providing definitions for lesser-known vocabulary. At the end of each article, find a readability score using the Flesch-Kincaid algorithm. Browse the site's home page for the most recent posts or use the Topics link to find information sorted into categories. This site also includes a keyword search to use when looking for specific information. Some articles include YouTube videos; if your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable.

tag(s): body systems (56), brain (65), careers (151), earth (206), environment (298), evolution (106), genetics (89), human body (125), space (233), STEM (217)

In the Classroom

Include a link to Science News for Students on classroom computers to include with other non-fiction reading resources for students. Have students browse through the site to find information of interest when choosing science fair or research topics. Enhance students' learning by asking them to create an infographic related to a science topic using Canva Infographic Maker, reviewed here. This very easy to use tool includes drag and drop tools for easy creation of infographics using included templates or your own design. Take student research a step further and redefine their technology use by having students use ThingLink, reviewed here, to upload an image related to their science research and add annotations. Thinglink offers tools for adding text, audio, video, and more to images. Weaker readers will need a reading buddy for some of the more challenging articles. Classes in lower grades will want to read the articles together. A quick check on one article using Juicy Studio's Readability test, reviewed here, provided an approximate grade level of 6.5. Check articles before assigning to elementary students. You might also want to use Word Sift, reviewed here, to quickly identify important words that appear in the text.

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3D Apollo 11 Command Module - Smithsonian Museum

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4 to 12
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Take a virtual 3D tour of the Apollo 11 Command Module, Columbia, home of the astronauts of the first manned lunar mission in 1969. Select from 27 slides to view ...more
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Take a virtual 3D tour of the Apollo 11 Command Module, Columbia, home of the astronauts of the first manned lunar mission in 1969. Select from 27 slides to view different portions of the module, then use your mouse to move around the image. Each slide also contains a short description of the content shown. In addition to the 3D tour, this site includes many downloads including models for 3D printers and models for use with VR headsets. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable.

tag(s): explorers (71), moon (81), space (233), STEM (217), virtual field trips (78)

In the Classroom

Bookmark this site on classroom computers for students to explore during your space unit or when studying modern explorers. Introduce the site on your interactive whiteboard to demonstrate the different features before having students explore on their own. Use Wakelet, reviewed here to curate and share additional web resources about space exploration as a class, or have students create their own Wakelet sharing resources found through individual research. As a culminating project for more advanced technology users, have students create an interactive timeline using Timelinely, reviewed here, or choose from other timeline creation tools located here to tell the story of space exploration and man's mission to the moon.

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Universe and Space - Science Resources - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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Find engaging tools related to the universe and space in this curated list. Read the descriptions to find out whether a site sounds right for what you want to know. ...more
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Find engaging tools related to the universe and space in this curated list. Read the descriptions to find out whether a site sounds right for what you want to know. There are some sites specifically for elementary grades, although most are for secondary. Read through the content sites and find lesson ideas and interactives. If you want to explore even more information, peruse the additional tagged list of resources related to space.

tag(s): space (233)

In the Classroom

If you are teaching about the universe and space, be sure to bookmark (or save) this collection. There are resources here for all grades, plus many extra tools on the tagged list. Share sites on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Provide the link on your class website for students to access both in and out of class.

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Smithsonian X 3D - Smithsonian Institution

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6 to 12
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Tour some of the Smithsonian Museum's most treasured objects through 3D models and scientific missions. Through the use of 3D digitization techniques, the museum is rapidly adding content...more
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Tour some of the Smithsonian Museum's most treasured objects through 3D models and scientific missions. Through the use of 3D digitization techniques, the museum is rapidly adding content and collections to this site telling never-known stories about the museum's treasures. Use the site's search features to find models; some also include tours with additional information. Choose videos to learn how curators on the 3D team captured and shared information. Select the educators' portion of the site to download an ebook interdisciplinary learning experience combining technology and history in the study of Abraham Lincoln. For help in using this site, be sure to visit the Getting Started portion including directions on how to use the tools. If your district blocks YouTube, the videos on this site may not be viewable.

tag(s): dinosaurs (49), lincoln (77), museums (43), presidents (131), space (233), STEM (217), virtual field trips (78)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of these many resources to take a virtual visit with your class to the Smithsonian Museum. View artifacts and tours together on an interactive whiteboard or with a projector then allow students to explore on their own. After viewing a tour, ask students to research a topic further. Instead of a written report have students create an online quiz or game for fellow students using a quiz tool like Arcade Game Generator, reviewed here, or QuizWhizzer, reviewed here. Use a video response tool like Flipgrid, reviewed here, for student collaboration and sharing of research. Extend learning by asking students to create their own virtual field trip using Google Earth, reviewed here. Have students add articles, images, and videos to locations featured on their virtual trip.

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AeroSpaceGuide - Vic Stathopoulos

Grades
6 to 12
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AeroSpaceGuide is the online resource for all things aerospace for students, scientists, and anyone interested in space. Dig deep into this site to learn about space updates and news,...more
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AeroSpaceGuide is the online resource for all things aerospace for students, scientists, and anyone interested in space. Dig deep into this site to learn about space updates and news, space exploration vehicles and history, women in space, the solar system, and much more through images and short feature articles.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): explorers (71), solar system (125), space (233), STEM (217)

In the Classroom

Use AeroSpaceGuide as an anticipatory set or "activator" to introduce a unit or lesson on a projector or interactive whiteboard. Allow students time to explore as a starting point for further research into space-related topics. Enhance learning and modify classroom technology use by having students create an infographic sharing their space research using Easel.ly, reviewed here. Upon completion of your space unit transform classroom technology use by having students make a multimedia presentation featuring information learned using slides, reviewed here, or Lucidpress, reviewed here.

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Exploratorium - Exploratorium

Grades
4 to 12
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Explore, play, and discover at the website for Exploratorium in San Francisco. This very comprehensive site is part of their learning laboratory exploring the world through science,...more
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Explore, play, and discover at the website for Exploratorium in San Francisco. This very comprehensive site is part of their learning laboratory exploring the world through science, art, and human perception. Choose from the many different offerings including blogs, videos, and websites or explore by topic. If you teach science, you will want to bookmark this site for use all year long!

tag(s): atmosphere (28), colors (76), earth (206), electricity (90), energy (203), geology (77), light (56), magnetism (41), matter (64), motion (71), oceans (167), optical illusions (12), optics (15), sound (106), space (233), STEM (217), temperature (35), time (137), water (135)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of the many resources found on Exploratorium to supplement science lessons. Resources include animations, songs, activities, and more. Share this site with students to use as inspiration for science fair projects. After using resources from the site, enhance learning by having students make a multimedia presentation including information learned, using Sway, reviewed here. Sway creates unique multimedia projects using text, images, and media. Change the look of your Sway using the Mood and Remix tools to change the color palette, layout, and fonts. Alternatively, choose one of the many TeachersFirst Edge tools, reviewed here.

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Space - Time - Time Inc.

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4 to 9
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Stay up to date with the latest news from Space with this resource from Time. Scroll down the page to view articles organized by date. Click to see any article ...more
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Stay up to date with the latest news from Space with this resource from Time. Scroll down the page to view articles organized by date. Click to see any article with included images. Explore topics further by clicking links to additional information found within the articles.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): explorers (71), nasa (38), space (233)

In the Classroom

Include a link to this site on classroom computers as a non-fiction resource for reading material. This site will be especially helpful for students with a high interest in space exploration. If you want to remove distracting advertisements, use a site such as Juicy Studios: Readability Test, reviewed here. Use this site on an interactive whiteboard or with a projector as you explore the latest news from space.

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How to Put a Human on Mars - BBC

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4 to 12
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Explore how humans can get to Mars. Use the interactives and videos to learn what accommodations will need to be in place when putting humans on Mars. Look around Mars ...more
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Explore how humans can get to Mars. Use the interactives and videos to learn what accommodations will need to be in place when putting humans on Mars. Look around Mars and the outside of the spacecraft. Watch the astronauts share how they would survive, land, and explore. Lastly, see how the people will get back safely from Mars. For further learning, explore the Mission to Mars series at the bottom of the landing page.

tag(s): mars (41), planets (136), space (233)

In the Classroom

Students can use this site to research information about how humans can land on Mars. They will gain a deep understanding of not only how it is possible, but why scientists have to make certain decisions, and why considerations need to be in place. You can use the activities for the whole class to learn about processes that astronauts go through to travel and explore another planet. Pieces of it can also be used as an anticipatory set to introduce a study of planets, space, or astronauts.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Space - BBC

Grades
4 to 12
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Take an interactive 3-D tour of the solar system or the International Space Station, investigate the latest images from Mars, or use amazing images of auroras, galaxies, meteor showers,...more
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Take an interactive 3-D tour of the solar system or the International Space Station, investigate the latest images from Mars, or use amazing images of auroras, galaxies, meteor showers, and other phenomena to enrich an astronomy unit. Click the Collection tab on the top menu bar to find more. This highly animated site explores a wealth of space-related topics from the past, present, and future. Games and quizzes for fun and learning are also provided.

tag(s): solar system (125), space (233)

In the Classroom

Include this site with your other bookmarks for images and space-related content. Use Symbaloo, reviewed here, to share all of your space bookmarks in one easy to find location. As students learn about different star formations, engage and enhance their learning by inviting them to create infographics using Canva Infographic Maker, reviewed here, to describe and share facts about their research. As a final project, have students extend their learning by including their infographic in a multimedia presentation as an alternative to a typical research paper. Adobe Spark in K-12, reviewed here, offers tools for creating web pages that include videos, photos, and slide presentations.

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