TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of Jan 21, 2018

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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Bing Maps - Microsoft

Grades
K to 12
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Use Bing Maps as your online resource for mapping locations and more. Allow Bing to recognize your location, then find and map directions anywhere. Additional features allow you to...more
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Use Bing Maps as your online resource for mapping locations and more. Allow Bing to recognize your location, then find and map directions anywhere. Additional features allow you to view current traffic along the route. Additional icons offer nearby locations for restaurants, gas stations, and more. Choose different views for viewing maps including road, aerial, and street-side views. Sign in to Bing Maps using your Microsoft account to save and access your collections from any device.

tag(s): directions (19), maps (295)

In the Classroom

If you teach geography, this one's a must. It is also helpful for showing students WHERE a story or news event takes place. In lower grades, use it to show students the basics of their community. Teach map skills by showing students their own community. Zoom in on their street or the school. This site is perfect for sharing on an interactive whiteboard. Set up a class Microsoft account (or use student accounts if permitted). Have students create their own custom route plans to tour historic sites. Challenge math students to plan the most economical route to visit several vacation destinations, including gas mileage and gas prices. Have students create place-marker files of the important places in the life of a famous person or the route traveled by a particular unit during the Civil War. Have student groups create place-marker files to show environmental sites, habitats, landforms, or anything you can place on a map. Share or embed student-created maps using the links and embed code provided.

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TeachersFirst Reading Treks - Make Learning a Journey - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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Your students can visit the world and build their background knowledge when they choose to read a book in conjunction with Reading Treks. Find fiction and informational books at every...more
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Your students can visit the world and build their background knowledge when they choose to read a book in conjunction with Reading Treks. Find fiction and informational books at every reading level. Each Reading Trek unit has a downloadable PDF with Common Core State Standards, ISTE Standards, Grade Level, Ideas and Activities for using the Reading Trek in class, and a list of Helpful Resouces. There is also a Google Maps (KMZ) file. Under the About TeachersFirst Reading Treks on the home page find step-by-step instructions for when you're ready to use a Reading Trek. TeachersFirst is just getting started creating Treks for books. Do you have a suggestion? Select Suggest a Trek from the left menu to let us know about it. We'd love to hear from you!

tag(s): independent reading (128), maps (295), reading comprehension (122), reading lists (79)

In the Classroom

These units are perfect for use with a whole-class novel, literature circles, or individual reading! Ask student's to keep a journal about what they are reading and learning using an easy virtual journaling tool such as Penzu, reviewed here. With Penzu you can add images or your own artwork as illustrations. If you are conducting literature circles a good tool to use for small group assignments and communication is Simply Circle, reviewed here, or Edmodo, reviewed here. For students to share their book with their peers, challenge them to design an interactive multimedia poster using Genial.ly, reviewed here. As an option, and for a real challenge, have students design a music track to go with parts or all of the book using Booktrack, reviewed here, and share the link on their mutimedia poster.

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OK2Ask: Google Earth Web: Oh the Places You Can Go - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session from October 2017, opens in Adobe Connect. Dust off your digital passport and join us on a journey using the new ...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional learning session from October 2017, opens in Adobe Connect. Dust off your digital passport and join us on a journey using the new Google Earth web. Learn the key features of Google Earth web and how to incorporate this powerful tool into your classroom instruction. The reimagined version of Google Earth includes features that go beyond the use of maps and satellite imagery. Users can now explore the world with Voyager, Google Earth's showcase of guided tours, and try out the 3D button to view places from any angle. Leave with classroom ideas and lesson planning resources. Participants will: 1. Get acquainted with the key features of Google Earth web; 2. Explore interactive guided tours with Voyager; and 3. Start building your own Tour for Google Earth web. This session is appropriate for teachers at all technology levels.

tag(s): Google (26)

In the Classroom

The archive of this teacher-friendly, hands-on webinar will empower and inspire you to use learning technology in the classroom and for professional productivity. As appropriate, specific classroom examples and ideas have been shared. View the session with a few of your teaching colleagues to find and share new ideas. Find additional information and links to tools at the session resource page. Learn more about OK2Ask and upcoming sessions here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Google My Maps - Google

Grades
4 to 12
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You may already be familiar with Google Maps, reviewed here, but Google My Maps takes working with maps a step further. Use Google My Maps to create...more
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You may already be familiar with Google Maps, reviewed here, but Google My Maps takes working with maps a step further. Use Google My Maps to create custom maps with features you add. Add points or shapes to any location, use the embedded search to find places then save to your map, import information from spreadsheets, and customize your map with colored icons and your uploaded images and videos. Collaborate on your project just like you would with Google Documents, then embed maps into your website or blog.

tag(s): maps (295), virtual field trips (54)

In the Classroom

Share Google My Maps on an interactive whiteboard or projector to create virtual trips for many situations. Create a trip to biomes around the world, visit places mentioned within books, map out battlefield locations for different wars, or find and save different kinds of landforms on your map. The possibilities are as endless as your imagination. Embed completed maps onto your class webpage or blog for students to view when reviewing for tests or quizzes. Have older students complete their own Google My Map project to create their own virtual field trips. This site is perfect to use in conjunction with TeachersFirst Reading Treks to follow the adventures of characters in the featured stories. Not ready to create your own maps? Use the explore feature on the site to find many examples of maps made by others.

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The Time Now - Shane Buck

Grades
K to 12
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The Time Now provides accurate synchronized time information from anywhere in the world. Add multiple locations to compare current local time. This site also features several tools...more
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The Time Now provides accurate synchronized time information from anywhere in the world. Add multiple locations to compare current local time. This site also features several tools including currency converters and travel information. This site meets Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 (WCAG) standards by providing tools making content useful to all users including those with disabilities including sight impairments.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): calculators (43), calendars (47), moon (73), space (221), sun (71), time (141), time zones (9), weather (200)

In the Classroom

Bookmark (or save in your favorites) The Time Now on your classroom computers for students to use throughout the year. Find out the local time and temperature in countries as you study them and compare their local time to yours. Include time/date conversions for online conferences you will hold with parents who are deployed or traveling in different time zones. Share meeting dates/times for Skype sessions using the time conversions, so everyone is "on time." Find a partner classroom located in a different time zone and use The Time Now to compare local times throughout the day. Then create a collaborative class book with your partner class to contrast and compare what is happening in one area of the world compared to your partner. Use a tool like Book Creator, reviewed here, to create collaborative books including images, videos, and audio recordings.

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EarthCam Live Webcam Network - EarthCam, Inc

Grades
K to 12
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Discover what is happening all around the world, live, as it takes place. EarthCam's network includes live webcams featuring weather, traffic, animals, and more. Discover webcams by...more
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Discover what is happening all around the world, live, as it takes place. EarthCam's network includes live webcams featuring weather, traffic, animals, and more. Discover webcams by topic or explore popular offerings. Scroll further down the home page to choose webcams on a clickable map by location. Because webcams may feature streaming from inside homes or contain other personal information, do not have young children access them without supervision. Previewing all videos before sharing with the class would be wise.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): cultures (105), globe (15), maps (295), webcams (7)

In the Classroom

This site would be an excellent addition to any science, social studies, or world cultures class. Teachers click on a webcam in different parts of the world to see things like weather and basic geography. Share the videos on an interactive whiteboard or with a projector. In early elementary, use webcams to introduce the world visually with a projector or on an interactive whiteboard. Select specific webcams and create shortcuts on classroom computer desktops for students to "see what's happening" on a certain continent as you study the seven continents. Use this resource to visit different areas that have been effected by natural disasters. Use animal webcams for students to observe animal behavior and keep a "lab journal" of what they see. Instead of the traditional paper and pencil "lab journal," have students keep a virtual journal about what they are learning. Use an easy virtual journaling tool such as Penzu, reviewed here. With Penzu you can add images or your own artwork as illustrations. Challenge students to further research the animal(s) they observed and to create an interactive map showing where the animals can be found with a tool like Click2Map, reviewed here. With Click2Map students can include display markers featuring text, photos, and videos!

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The True Size of... - James Talmage and Damon Maneice

Grades
4 to 12
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The True Size of...uses Google Maps and drag and drop technology to allow you to compare the size of any two countries. Because normal maps have a certain amount of ...more
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The True Size of...uses Google Maps and drag and drop technology to allow you to compare the size of any two countries. Because normal maps have a certain amount of distortion, sometimes it's hard to see real size differences on a standard map. Just type in the name of any county. Once highlighted, drag the country to any location on the map to compare. Hover over the country to view statistics with the actual size. When finished, right click and start over.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): area (73), countries (81), map skills (82), maps (295)

In the Classroom

The True Size of... is perfect for use on an interactive whiteboard or with a projector. Use to demonstrate size differences in countries. Have students use this site when presenting reports of nations around the world. Have a new student from another state or country? Use this site to begin a discussion of the comparable size of where they came from to where your classroom is located. This tool would be especially valuable when explaining the concept of map scale or square miles/meters. Use The True Size of... to compare locations students read about in Globetracker's Mission, reviewed here, books they are reading, or when reading with ReadingTreks, reviewed here. Include it in discussions about the impact of a country's size on its culture in world language or cultures classes. Use an online tool such a Canva, reviewed here, to create a Venn Diagram to compare and contrast different countries.

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Where in the World? - SuperBreak

Grades
5 to 12
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Can you guess the secret location? Explore landmarks from all over the world and try to guess the country where you are located. Begin by choosing your interests from categories ...more
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Can you guess the secret location? Explore landmarks from all over the world and try to guess the country where you are located. Begin by choosing your interests from categories such as history or entertainment. Begin play, but think quickly! Choose the correct location of each image within 12 seconds before it is marked wrong. As you select an answer, information is provided about the location of the correct response.

tag(s): landmarks (27)

In the Classroom

Where in the World? is a great activity to play together on an interactive whiteboard or with a projector when you have a few extra minutes of class time. Explore famous landmarks from the comfort of your room. Share the locations using Google Earth, reviewed here. Put a link to Where in the World? on class computers and your webpage for students to explore on their own.

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American Panorama - Digital Scholarship Lab, University of Richmond

Grades
6 to 12
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American Panorama includes interactive maps demonstrating changes in the United States since the 1800's. This ongoing project will be adding additional maps, current ones provide information...more
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American Panorama includes interactive maps demonstrating changes in the United States since the 1800's. This ongoing project will be adding additional maps, current ones provide information on The Forced Migration of Enslaved People, Trails, Canals, and Foreign-Born Population. Click on any map to explore the many features including keyword searches and interactive timelines.

tag(s): african american (109), immigrants (22), immigration (59), maps (295), migration (58), slavery (67)

In the Classroom

Bookmark these interactive maps for use throughout the year to examine American issues in deeper detail. Share the locations using Google Earth, reviewed here, to get a first-hand look at the geography of the region. This tool is a great find for gifted students. Have them explore in-depth different changes to America over the past two centuries. Have them record what they learn using an online journal with Penzu, reviewed here. With Penzu you can add images or your own artwork as illustrations. Take this idea a step further and challenge students to make a multimedia presentation using information found in their research. Use a tool like Zeetings, reviewed here. Zeetings allows adding polls, videos, embeds, web links, PowerPoint, and PDFs.

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The Sled Dogs of the Arctic Circle - PBS Learning Media

Grades
4 to 8
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Learn more about the Inuits of the Arctic Circle and their hardy, sled dogs with this video from PBS Learning Media. The video focuses on the adaptations of the dogs ...more
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Learn more about the Inuits of the Arctic Circle and their hardy, sled dogs with this video from PBS Learning Media. The video focuses on the adaptations of the dogs to the harsh climate and their ability to work together pulling heavy sleds across the snow and ice. Be sure to check out the teaching tips and correlations to National and Common Core Standards included on the site.

tag(s): alaska (24), animals (308), iditarod (6), video (278)

In the Classroom

Watch the video together with a projector or on an interactive whiteboard as part of your lessons on the Iditarod. Have students create an annotated image featuring race information with included text boxes, video, and related links using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here. Create a class wiki as you learn about sled dogs and the Iditarod. Not comfortable with wikis? Check out the TeachersFirst Wiki Walk-Through.

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Global Trend Map - Paul Bourke

Grades
6 to 12
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Discover what is trending on Google with the interactive Global Trend Map. Use the drop down box to choose a country and change the visual appearance of the map if ...more
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Discover what is trending on Google with the interactive Global Trend Map. Use the drop down box to choose a country and change the visual appearance of the map if desired. The top Google searches for that country appear in a list with the top trend written across the chosen country. Click the Translate button to translate into English. Get the embed code to share this on your website or blog.

tag(s): cross cultural understanding (122), maps (295), news (260)

In the Classroom

This site is excellent for enrichment during current events lessons. World language classes can keep up with hot topics in the countries where the language they are learning is spoken. Include this link on your class web page for students to access both in and out of class. Challenge students to compare and contrast trends across different countries using an online tool such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram, reviewed here. Have students create a presentation on any of the trending topics using Swipe, reviewed here.

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Use a Compass Rose - Houghton Mifflin Company

Grades
K to 4
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Practice finding directions on a map using a compass rose with this interactive activity. Read or listen to directions for each of the simple activities. When finished, check answers...more
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Practice finding directions on a map using a compass rose with this interactive activity. Read or listen to directions for each of the simple activities. When finished, check answers using the link at the bottom of the page.

tag(s): compasses (4), map skills (82), preK (292)

In the Classroom

This brief activity would work well projected on an interactive whiteboard or as a classroom computer center. Be sure to share on your class website for students to practice at home. Recreate this simple map on a classroom bulletin board for practice with map skills at any time.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Pompeii Virtual Tour - Google Maps

Grades
6 to 12
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Can't take a field trip to Pompeii? Use this virtual field trip that includes photos and 360-degree views of this ancient Roman City. Click on slides at the bottom of ...more
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Can't take a field trip to Pompeii? Use this virtual field trip that includes photos and 360-degree views of this ancient Roman City. Click on slides at the bottom of the page to see different areas of the ruins such as the Temple of Isis and street views of the entire archeological area.

tag(s): romans (35), virtual field trips (54), volcanoes (65)

In the Classroom

In the age of shrinking opportunities for field trips, jump right in! This site is perfect for use on an interactive whiteboard as you explore this well-preserved example of ancient Roman life. Have students use Fakebook, reviewed here, to create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook about a day in the life of an inhabitant of Pompeii. Have students create timelines (with music, photos, videos, and more) using Capzles, reviewed here, to reflect what they have learned about ancient Pompeii and Roman life.

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Globetracker's Mission - TeachersFirst

Grades
2 to 6
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Globetracker's Mission is a projector or whiteboard-ready episodic story in blog-style format, taking students in grades 2-6 on a journey as they learn standards-based geography, landforms,...more
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Globetracker's Mission is a projector or whiteboard-ready episodic story in blog-style format, taking students in grades 2-6 on a journey as they learn standards-based geography, landforms, and map skills in an engaging, interactive context. Each weekly "post" from Geo and Meri, fictitious brother and sister techno-savvy teens, traces steps on a secret mission for their Uncle Globetracker and his important but unnamed government agency. Episodes include annotated vocabulary terms, interactive maps to practice map skills, and think-aloud questions the teens pose as they use today's tools: text messaging, cell phones, and blog posting. Readers vote at the conclusion of each post, telling Geo and Meri what to do next. TeachersFirst member teachers have other options for their classes to become involved in the mission. All episodes have accompanying Google Earth placemark files so your class can "tour" with Geo and Meri using Google Earth's free, downloadable software. Included are complete tech tips, detailed lesson and management ideas, and teacher information.

tag(s): continents (50), directions (19), earth (230), landforms (48), latitude (14), longitude (14), map skills (82), maps (295), oceans (161)

In the Classroom

See "Lesson Ideas" from the Teacher Edition page for a complete list of ways to use this creative unit with younger students, on laptops with student partners, or as semi-independent work. Be sure to share the link on your teacher web page for students to share at home (or check on the next episode, if they can't wait!).

Encourage parents to join the fun on the mission by sharing the suggestions listed under "Parent Info."

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