TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of Jun 28, 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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PBS Kids - PBS

Grades
K to 5
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PBS Kids' focus is mainly educational activities and videos for kids in Preschool, Kindergarten, and Primary age students. However, there are a few programs for older students; find...more
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PBS Kids' focus is mainly educational activities and videos for kids in Preschool, Kindergarten, and Primary age students. However, there are a few programs for older students; find them by selecting You Choose. For younger students, select games, videos, and activities about well-known characters like Clifford the Big Red Dog, Arthur, Peg and Cat, Dr. Seuss, and more. Clicking All Games will give you 29 categories to choose from, for example, Team Work, Feelings, Engineering, Spelling, Reading, Healthy Habits, and many more. Click New Games to find topics such as Guess the Feeling, World Orchestra, and others to help familiarize youngsters with flight, trains, counting, and well, you name it, and PBS Kids probably has it!

tag(s): DAT device agnostic tool (174), game based learning (158), literacy (111), preK (286), video (275)

In the Classroom

Discover and share the many free resources available on PBS Kids. Show clips on your interactive whiteboard, or with your projector, then have students complete an accompanying activity. With younger students, use FlipGrid, reviewed here, as a video response platform for students to share how they would use what they learned by watching the videos or using the interactives. Alternatively, you might try using Synth, reviewed here; Synth is an extremely easy to use tool for creating short audio and video soundbites and automatically pieces together soundbites into threads to share as podcasts. PBS Kids is perfect for sharing with parents. Include a link to activities on your class website along with suggestions on how to use activities at home.

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Race to Ratify - iCivics

Grades
5 to 12
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Can you be a ratification #influencer? That is the goal of this game where players land back in time to the year 1787 and fight to ratify the newly proposed ...more
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Can you be a ratification #influencer? That is the goal of this game where players land back in time to the year 1787 and fight to ratify the newly proposed Constitution using the social media of the time - pamphlets. Select from two different game modes - historical and free play. Talk with friends and dissenters as you travel across the 13 states to hear different opinions and attempt to influence others to your point of view. Earn tokens along the way to use in interviews and pamphlets. Although login and registration are available on the site, they aren't necessary to play the game. The educator login gives access to the extension pack that provides additional context and materials for using the game in classrooms.

tag(s): 1700s (32), branches of government (61), colonial america (108), constitution (93), game based learning (158)

In the Classroom

Demonstrate the basic concepts of the challenge on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Then allow students to play on their own on the whiteboard or classroom computers, keeping a log of their actions and results. Enhance learning by having students share interactions from the game in comic form using ToonyTool, reviewed here. Ask students to use ToonyTool to create a conversation with the game's character trying to persuade an anti-Federalist or another opponent on the virtues of the Constitution. Use the game as inspiration for students to extend their learning by creating their own history game using Scratch, reviewed here. For ideas and inspiration, use the search feature in Scratch to find examples of history games created by other users.

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Where on Google Earth is Carmen Sandiego? The Crown Jewels Caper - Google

Grades
4 to 12
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Can you track the stolen loot? Follow Carmen Sandiego around the globe to help capture the world's greatest super thief. Begin the chase to receive your first assignment and go ...more
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Can you track the stolen loot? Follow Carmen Sandiego around the globe to help capture the world's greatest super thief. Begin the chase to receive your first assignment and go to the location provided in the clue. Use magnifying glasses found in the city to interview suspects and collect clues to the next location. Each city stop includes three areas for finding clues to the following site.

tag(s): game based learning (158), maps (295)

In the Classroom

Share a link to this site on your classroom computers for students to use as a geography center. Use the locations contained within the game as a starting point for student research projects. Allow students to choose from different locations for their project using a polling tool like Dotstorming, reviewed here. Dotstorming allows participants to add comments, use this option to let students sign up for their choice of location. Encourage collaboration between groups of students by using Padlet, reviewed here, to correlate a list of links and resources to use. Create a column for each country or location being studied and ask students to share resources as they find them. As students begin to gather facts and information, help organize their thinking by asking them to create infographics using Canva Infographic Maker, reviewed here. Provide a list of topics to include such as population, main imports and exports, climate, etc. Instead of a typical written report, ask students to tell the story of their chosen location using Google My Maps, reviewed here. Google My Maps is more than a map-making tool; it includes features that allow you to add images, videos, and more to take viewers on a virtual trip anywhere in the world. Once students become familiar with Google My Maps, ask them to create their own geography game by providing clues to different locations found on their map.

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Blockly Games - Google

Grades
K to 12
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Learn computer programming with Blockly Games, developed for students who don't have any prior coding experience. Games progress in difficulty starting with a simple puzzle and increase...more
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Learn computer programming with Blockly Games, developed for students who don't have any prior coding experience. Games progress in difficulty starting with a simple puzzle and increase through creating a pond game with text-based programming. Start from the beginning or choose any game to complete activities at your own pace.

tag(s): coding (80), game based learning (158), STEM (219)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of the varying levels included with Blockly Games to introduce and develop coding skills with your students. After sharing the site on your interactive whiteboard, add a link to this site on classroom computers for use as a coding center. Include Blockly Games with your other coding resources using a bookmarking tool like Symbaloo, reviewed here, to share links in one single tool. As students learn about coding, enhance technology use by asking them to reflect upon their learning through blogs. Edublogs, reviewed here, is a free blogging platform developed for classroom use. Modify technology use by asking students to include screenshots of their work and discuss their problem-solving tips as they work through the different levels of coding skills. Use a screenshot tool such as Nimbus Screenshot Capture, reviewed here. As students become more proficient in using code, ask them to create their own games using Blockly, reviewed here.

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Game Builder - WiscOnline

Grades
K to 12
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Game Builder offers ready-to-go games and templates for building digital games in a variety of formats. Choose from classic games like Bingo and Jeopardy or try different forms such...more
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Game Builder offers ready-to-go games and templates for building digital games in a variety of formats. Choose from classic games like Bingo and Jeopardy or try different forms such as Squid Hunter or Chakalaka. Select a game option to begin making games, then follow prompts to add questions and responses. When finished, be sure to choose the option to make your game public making it available to share. Registration is required to create and share games.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): assessment (130), game based learning (158), gamification (81), quizzes (91)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of the games offered on this site to review or introduce content in your classroom. If sharing with younger students, demonstrate on your interactive whiteboard first to show students how to avoid the advertising on the site. Share games on your class website or blogs. Instead of you creating the games, ask students to work together to create their own games for use when reviewing content. Ask students to replace pen and paper and include a link to their games as part of a blog post using Edublog, reviewed here. Take this a step further at the end of your unit and modify classroom technology use and extend student learning by having students build an explainer video of the topic using moovly, reviewed here, or another video creation tool.

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Gimkit - Josh Feinsilber

Grades
K to 12
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Gimkit is a quiz learning game for students and teachers, created and maintained by students. After signing up, you begin by creating "kits" (live learning games) to create quizzes....more
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Gimkit is a quiz learning game for students and teachers, created and maintained by students. After signing up, you begin by creating "kits" (live learning games) to create quizzes. Create from scratch, import an existing quiz from Quizlet or a CSV file, or copy quizzes from the Gimkit gallery to modify for your use. Follow the prompts to add questions, four answer choices, and add an image if desired. Add class rosters and assign kits for student completion within a specific time frame. Students complete quizzes at their own pace within the due date. As they complete quizzes, students earn money to reinvest in Gimkit upgrades that align with their strengths. Use your Gimkit dashboard to view student progress and earnings and additional formative data. Free accounts provide all core features and the ability to create up to five kits.

tag(s): assessment (130), collaboration (70), game based learning (158), gamification (81), polls and surveys (49), quizzes (91)

In the Classroom

Use Gimkit as a formative assessment tool for all subjects. Create pretests and allow students to opt out of some introductory assignments and choose other options like research projects or multimedia presentations. If you want to share a quiz as a class, project a quiz onto your interactive whiteboard and discuss question options together. Use the data collected from student quizzes to guide instruction both individually and for whole groups. Don't forget to take advantage of already created quizzes found on the site and available to import from Quizlet!

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Gamification Resources - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This collection of reviewed resources from TeachersFirst is selected to help teachers and students learn about and use gamification in the classroom. Various subject areas are included...more
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This collection of reviewed resources from TeachersFirst is selected to help teachers and students learn about and use gamification in the classroom. Various subject areas are included in the collection. Explore online workshops to learn more about gamification. Find tools that you can use to gamify your classroom. Remember to start small with gamification and add more to your gamification "toolbox" as you are more comfortable.

tag(s): coding (80), game based learning (158), gamification (81), polls and surveys (49)

In the Classroom

Create your own games for review and classroom activities. As a final assessment, challenge students to create their own games to share with their peers. Use this collection to find the best gamification tools on the TeachersFirst site!

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Game-Based Learning Resources - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This collection of reviewed resources from TeachersFirst is selected to help teachers and students learn about game-based learning and how to incorporate games into teaching and learning....more
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This collection of reviewed resources from TeachersFirst is selected to help teachers and students learn about game-based learning and how to incorporate games into teaching and learning. Engage your students in the way they love to learn - games! Explore resources for quick practice or create your own games using these tools. Nurture problem solving, logic, and creativity.

tag(s): coding (80), differentiation (56), game based learning (158), gamification (81), logic (240)

In the Classroom

Share these tools on your class website or blog for students to use both in and out of the classroom. Use these tools to differentiate and reach all students at the various levels. Challenge your students to create their own games for review of content or acceleration options.

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Baamboozle - baamboozle.com

Grades
K to 12
4 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Baamboozle is a quick and easy-to-use tool for playing and creating games. It doesn't require registration to play. Choose the "Play games now" link to go to all games saved ...more
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Baamboozle is a quick and easy-to-use tool for playing and creating games. It doesn't require registration to play. Choose the "Play games now" link to go to all games saved on Baamboozle. Scroll through to view games, or search for a term. Divide the group into two teams and begin play. Each team chooses a number from the game board and answers the question. Check for accuracy; then, Baamboozle keeps track of scores. Use games found on the site, or create games on any device. Registration with email is necessary to create your own games.

tag(s): DAT device agnostic tool (174), flash cards (39), game based learning (158), preK (286)

In the Classroom

Save Baamboozle in your bag of tricks for a quick review of any content. Engage students by having them create games to share with the class when reviewing for quizzes and tests. Bring excitement to professional development by creating a Baamboozle with materials you are sharing. Be sure to provide a link to Baamboozle games on your class website for students to play at home.

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Quizlet Live - Quizlet

Grades
3 to 12
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Quizlet Live is a classroom quiz game for groups created by the makers of Quizlet, reviewed here. Follow directions to create and share a quiz set...more
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Quizlet Live is a classroom quiz game for groups created by the makers of Quizlet, reviewed here. Follow directions to create and share a quiz set and assign to student teams. At least six students are needed to create and play a Quizlet Live game. When students receive the code and log in, they find other team members and begin competing. Accuracy is encouraged over speed, providing a wrong answer will send teams back to start from the beginning of the quiz.

tag(s): collaboration (70), DAT device agnostic tool (174), game based learning (158), quizzes (91), spelling (161), vocabulary (292), word study (71)

In the Classroom

Use Quizlet Live to introduce new topics or content, or as a review before testing. Quizlet Live would be an excellent tool for the start of the year to help students get to know each other, or use throughout the year to have students work with different students in cooperative learning activities.

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GooseChase edu - Andrew Cross

Grades
3 to 12
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Organize and run a scavenger hunt with GooseChase! Sign up for an account to begin creating games. Add your own missions to games or use missions available on the site. ...more
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Organize and run a scavenger hunt with GooseChase! Sign up for an account to begin creating games. Add your own missions to games or use missions available on the site. Determine point values for completion and optional links or images to provide additional information. Choose to allow participants to submit validation of completion through photos or videos that you can see in real-time. Once your game is set up (using any computer or device with Internet access), invite participants to begin play through a mobile device. Download the free apps for any mobile device through the Google Play Store or iTunes. GooseChase now has free basic plans for teachers where you can have unlimited games and classes and even a team game.

tag(s): creativity (115), DAT device agnostic tool (174), game based learning (158), gamification (81)

In the Classroom

Use GooseChase in your classroom as part of your project based learning activities. Assign a series of activities to groups for completion. Differentiate projects based on student interest and ability. Use one of the many educational games already in the library to see great examples of how to use GooseChase for any subject area. GooseChase would be an excellent addition to staff meetings. Have participants locate information on websites, textbooks, or throughout your school as part of professional development. Create a GooseChase for students as part of a nature walk outside of your school, ask younger students to find different geometric shapes, or have students draw pictures of main characters in books as part of a GooseChase mission.

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Quizizz - Quizizz

Grades
K to 12
11 Favorites 2  Comments
  
Looking for a quiz tool that is better than all the rest? Quizizz is a free tool. It works on any device: web browser, iOS, Android and Chrome apps. You ...more
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Looking for a quiz tool that is better than all the rest? Quizizz is a free tool. It works on any device: web browser, iOS, Android and Chrome apps. You can access hundreds of ready-made learning quizzes or create your own. Join as a teacher, pick a quiz, and use the code for a virtual room to give to your students. Alternatively, you can create your own quiz on Quizizz, even importing questions from excel/CSV files with just a click of a button. Students use the code to enter and submit a nickname, code name, or numerical name (students do not have to register). Better yet, if you have Google Classroom students can join by signing in with their Google Account; just one click. If you assign a Quizizz through Google Classroom, all your data gets updated in your Classroom dashboard. You will get notifications when students complete assignments, and their responses and grades show. Teachers can choose to make their quiz public or private. Embed images with your questions. Check or uncheck the settings including music. You can even duplicate an existing quiz to save into My Quizizz. A created Quizizz can have randomized or non-randomized questions.

Don't miss the memes that are displayed when students answer a question; these are sure to be a hit with students. You can also customize your Quizizz by creating your own Memes. Use images of the school mascot, students pets, or favorite game characters to create a set of ten or more memes. Click the My Memes from the top menu, then the plus symbol. You are now ready to start. Be sure to Click "Start Game" after students have entered the code. Send the game link to students (or other teachers to use with their classes) by email, website, or social media. Set time limits of 30 seconds to 5 minutes for students to answer each question. This allows more time for more complex questions. Students earn points for speed and accuracy. Unlike other sites, both teacher and students can see the questions, answers, and the leader board throughout the quiz. Most other tools require the teacher to project the answers and leader board on a whiteboard. The leader board can be turned OFF in this tool as well. And, what is the best part of this tool? Two separate classes can play together using this tool. Quizziz works on any web enabled device including smartphones and tablets, and has an iOS app.

You can now email student reports to parents (even send the student reports to multiple/all parents at once), the main navigation bar has moved from the top to the left, and there is a search bar that you can access on all pages, and now you can search both your quizzes and your reports. Quizizz is now available in Spanish and will soon be adding other languages. Don't miss their new Jungle theme with music, backgrounds, and GIFs... oh my!

tag(s): DAT device agnostic tool (174), game based learning (158), gamification (81), polls and surveys (49), quiz (73), quizzes (91), spanish (110)

In the Classroom

As with other similar tools, Quizizz is a formative assessment tool that is best used to obtain information about how the class as a whole is doing in understanding content material. Use Quizizz when asking questions that require a reading of a passage or longer time to answer questions. Be sure to set the time limit to the upper reaches of 5 minutes. Students can use code names or numerical screen names for anonymity if desired. Create pretests to offer to gifted students to "test out" of already learned material. Students can easily see the choices and choose answers using a browser on a laptop or any device. Make it a class challenge! Use this tool at the start of a new chapter or unit. Students can see who is at the top of the leaderboard during the play and can even ask questions while going through the quiz. Use this tool often to obtain a snapshot of each student's understanding of content. Print individual student reports for use during parent conferences and IEP meetings. As with other tools where there is a leader board, it is helpful to have a collaborative environment where competition is not the goal, instead working together and improving is important.

Comments

Melissa, , Grades: 0 - 5
Great way to conduct formative assessments that students love! Its got a great quiz creation interface and many useful customization options too. Deepak, , Grades: 0 - 12

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Kahoot! - Mobitroll

Grades
K to 12
8 Favorites 1  Comments
 
Ask meaningful questions and see responses in real-time while creating an exciting, game-like environment. Build instant polls, quizzes, or responses through a simple drag and drop...more
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Ask meaningful questions and see responses in real-time while creating an exciting, game-like environment. Build instant polls, quizzes, or responses through a simple drag and drop interface. Once you create your account, be sure to take the Intro Quiz to learn how to use this tool. When you start the quiz, you will be prompted to open a new tab, create a nickname, and enter the game pin. Now you will be able to take the quiz to learn how Kahoot! works AND be able to see what a teacher sees in your original tab. You will have to go to the Main tab to launch the next question in the Quiz. Find ready-made quizzes on the public Kahoot! menu by entering search terms. Create questions, quizzes, and polls with an optional uploaded image. Kahoot! also has a team option. Groups can use one computer to answer questions. The best part about the team option is it allows groups wait time to discuss their answer before submitting it. The teacher gets the data back instantly, and it is stored on the site or can be downloaded. This is superb for checking the knowledge of your audience/students or to see if they are still paying attention and understand concepts.

tag(s): DAT device agnostic tool (174), game based learning (158), gamification (81), polls and surveys (49), quizzes (91)

In the Classroom

This is a powerful formative assessment tool that is also fun! Create pretests to offer to gifted students to "test out" of already learned material. Students can easily see the choices and choose answers using a browser on a laptop or any device. Make it a class challenge! Use this tool at the start of a new chapter or unit. Project your quiz to the entire classroom using a whiteboard or projector. Students can easily see the choices and choose answers using a browser on a laptop or any device. Use the Team choice when reviewing for a unit test. Students can see who is at the top of the leaderboard during the play and can even ask questions while going through the quiz. Use this tool often to obtain a snapshot of each student's understanding of content.

Comments

What makes a good web tool? In my opinion, a web tool should be two things. They should be easy to look at, and easy to use. When you use these tools you need to be able to see clearly what a site does and the purpose it serves. Not only do you need to be able to see what you are doing, but do it easily. If it takes students more effort and energy to use a web tool or website, they will stop using it. You have to be able to keep the attention of the user. Beyond that an education tool needs a few additional items. Education tools need to be fun and interactive to continuously grab the attention of students. Students should have fun when using the site/tool.

Kahoot fits all the above criteria. Not only is it fun and easy for students to use, but easy for teachers to set up and use for students. Kahoot is a fun quiz tool that teachers can use to build discussions, polls, and quizzes for the classroom. Students can then log into the quiz using smartphones, tablets, or computers. The tool is designed for students and works for students. Kahoot is well thought out, and well executed. This tool really brings the learning experience to students who are so familiar with technology.
Ad, , Grades: 0 - 12

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Statetris - mapmsg.com

Grades
2 to 10
0 Favorites 0  Comments
 
In this activity, students check their knowledge of geography by playing a game similar to Tetris. Students are able to choose a "puzzle map" of a continent, country, state, or ...more
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In this activity, students check their knowledge of geography by playing a game similar to Tetris. Students are able to choose a "puzzle map" of a continent, country, state, or province. Some examples of the locations offered include Africa, USA, Italy, Europe, France, Germany, Brazil, Japan, South Carolina, and many others. After selecting the puzzle map location, students can choose a difficulty level of easy, medium, or difficult. The easy level has the shape labeled and a non-rotating piece. The medium level offers the name of the state or country, but the piece rotates in a circle. The difficult level offers no names and a rotating puzzle piece. In this game, shapes fall from the top of the screen, students have to maneuver the shape into the correct location on the continent before it reaches the bottom. Watch out - this site is addictive!

tag(s): continents (48), maps (295), states (158)

In the Classroom

This is a great geography review tool. Demonstrate the maps that coordinate with your curriculum on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students work individually or in pairs on laptops or a classroom computer station.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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