TeachersFirst Special Topics Collections

TeachersFirst's Special Topics collections help you find just what you and your students need, just in time for an upcoming unit, a holiday, focused research, student-directed exploration, or projects on a curriculum topic or event. You can be comfortable sharing the Special Topic links with students or parents, knowing that TeachersFirst’s Thinking Teachers have selected and reviewed each resource. Find classroom and project suggestions within each review, use the collection to find just what you need for your lessons. Some teachers assign these lists as the core resources for a broader student assignment. Editor’s Choice collections offer "the best of the best" for topics of particular interest. TeachersFirst also offers collections on professional special topics to help you meet particular teaching challenges.

 

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Resources Related to Colonial America - TeachersFirst

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K to 12
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Bring Colonial America to your class with the reviewed resources shared in this section. The colonial history of the United States covers the period of time from 1607 to 1776, ...more
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Bring Colonial America to your class with the reviewed resources shared in this section. The colonial history of the United States covers the period of time from 1607 to 1776, when the thirteen colonies joined together to declare their independence. Therefore, the term Colonial America also refers to the thirteen colonies located on what is now the eastern coast of the United States. People came to the New World for many different reasons: religious freedom, commerce, and starting new lives after serving time in jail. Education was important to the colonies, and the economy was based most often on farming and trade.

tag(s): 1600s (15), 1700s (33), colonial america (92), colonization (17)

In the Classroom

Use these resources as you prepare social studies lessons related to Colonial America. Each review includes technology integration ideas. This list includes resources for elementary and secondary students.

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American Civil War Resources - TeachersFirst

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K to 12
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For over a century, America's Northern and Southern states had been in conflict over several issues, including cultural values, the federal government's power, slavery, and other economic...more
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For over a century, America's Northern and Southern states had been in conflict over several issues, including cultural values, the federal government's power, slavery, and other economic interests. The bloodiest conflict in the history of our union was fought from 1861-1865 between the states that supported the federal union and the southern states that voted to secede and then form the Confederate States of America. This curated collection shares many resources and tools to help your students visualize what America was like during those tumultuous times.

tag(s): 1800s (58), civil war (129), lincoln (59), slavery (56)

In the Classroom

Help to deepen your students' understanding of Civil war times using this curated collection. Share these resources with your colleagues and students by emailing the page or sharing the link from your school web page and in your school newsletter. Find resources to incorporate into your lessons.

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Resources Related to the Revolutionary War - TeachersFirst

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K to 12
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Take your students back in time to the late 1700s, as the 13 colonies began their quest for freedom from British rule. These resources share information and tools to engage ...more
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Take your students back in time to the late 1700s, as the 13 colonies began their quest for freedom from British rule. These resources share information and tools to engage your students as they learn how the colonies came together to form the United States of America. Resources are shared for all grade levels and include classroom use ideas.

tag(s): american revolution (74), colonial america (92), colonization (17), washington (22)

In the Classroom

Use these resources as you prepare social studies lessons about the Revolutionary War. Each review includes technology integration ideas. This list includes resources for elementary and secondary students.

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Resources to Nurture Critical Thinking - TeachersFirst

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K to 12
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Nurture critical thinking skills in your classroom using the resources shared in this collection. Critical thinking is a process that includes the ability to interpret, analyze, and...more
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Nurture critical thinking skills in your classroom using the resources shared in this collection. Critical thinking is a process that includes the ability to interpret, analyze, and evaluate information. Thinking critically requires students to infer and solve problems with an open mind. Students use critical thinking skills to observe, experience, communicate and reflect while reading and learning content. As contentious public events spill over into the classroom, teachers need to help students learn how to process perspectives that differ from their own. Use this collection as you are planning your lessons and activities.

tag(s): critical thinking (100), media literacy (89), problem solving (213)

In the Classroom

Help your students to practice critical thinking skills using these engaging resources. Share these resources with your colleagues and school parents by emailing the page or sharing the link from your school web page and in your school newsletter.

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Online Learning Resources - TeachersFirst

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K to 12
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Online learning is an umbrella term that refers to any learning situated online rather than in a traditional classroom. As times have changed, online learning has become very common....more
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Online learning is an umbrella term that refers to any learning situated online rather than in a traditional classroom. As times have changed, online learning has become very common. There are many benefits to online learning: it allows educators to work from any location and time convenient for you (with most forms of online learning). You can also utilize online learning when weather or health crises arise. In addition, online learning can include synchronous lessons when all learners come together at a set time, asynchronous tasks which learners can complete as convenient to their schedules, online collaborative projects, and much more. This curated list includes resources for your online learning lessons, including tools to create online course materials, foster collaboration, and curate resources to share.

tag(s): Online Learning (31), remote learning (46)

In the Classroom

Find new tools to try when creating your online learning lessons. Each review includes technology integration ideas. Read the details of each tool and find the ones that will make your online learning more productive.

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Resources for ENL (English as a New Language) Students - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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As educators, we must prepare our lessons thinking of all learners. Students learning English as a new language (ENL) are no exception. Recognizing that these students are likely to...more
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As educators, we must prepare our lessons thinking of all learners. Students learning English as a new language (ENL) are no exception. Recognizing that these students are likely to be fluent in other languages, ENL classes use specific instructional strategies that build on the linguistic strengths that these students have already demonstrated. Any content area teacher may find themselves designing lessons for this population. In this curated list, we share some resources to help you plan lessons that include strategies for your ENL students.

tag(s): ELL/ESL (16), spanish (94)

In the Classroom

Find new tools and strategies to use with your ENL students. Share this list on your class website for families to use at home. This list includes resources for elementary and secondary students.

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Global Citizenship Resources - TeachersFirst

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K to 12
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Encourage your students to be global citizens with the resources shared in this collection. Global citizenship helps students to understand both world events and their role within the...more
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Encourage your students to be global citizens with the resources shared in this collection. Global citizenship helps students to understand both world events and their role within the international community. When students begin to become global citizens, they learn to respect universal values such as peace and the human rights of all people. Use this curated list to start your class discussion of global citizenship.

tag(s): collaboration (82), cross cultural understanding (146)

In the Classroom

Help your students to become global citizens using these engaging resources. Find ways to connect with other schools around the country or even around the world. Share these resources with your colleagues and school parents by emailing the page or sharing the link from your school web page and in your school newsletter.

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Formative Assessment Resources - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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Formative assessment is a term that refers to a wide variety of strategies and methods that teachers use to provide ongoing feedback to students. Before the final assessment, a formative...more
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Formative assessment is a term that refers to a wide variety of strategies and methods that teachers use to provide ongoing feedback to students. Before the final assessment, a formative assessment evaluates student comprehension, academic progress during lessons, and learning needs. These assessments help teachers check for understanding, determine skills mastery, and choose topics to review. Peruse the resources shared in this collection to find unique and engaging tools to use as you assess your students throughout your daily lessons.

tag(s): assessment (119), Formative Assessment (36), game based learning (158), polls and surveys (45)

In the Classroom

Find new tools to try in your classroom to create formative assessment activities! This curated list includes professional learning resources, polls, gaming tools, and other strategies to use to gauge a "quick check" of student understanding. Each review includes classroom use ideas. Read the details of each tool and find the ones that will work best for your students.

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Social and Emotional Learning Resources - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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Social-emotional Learning (SEL) is the process by which students of all ages develop and use social and emotional skills, knowledge, and attitudes. Using SEL skills, students better...more
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Social-emotional Learning (SEL) is the process by which students of all ages develop and use social and emotional skills, knowledge, and attitudes. Using SEL skills, students better understand emotion, manage their own, and show empathy towards others. SEL skills also help students set and achieve positive goals. Although this is an ongoing process through all grade levels, you can begin to instill these skills and understandings in even your youngest students. We encourage you to find appropriate tools and resources in this collection to use with your students and in your lessons.

tag(s): emotions (44), empathy (27), social and emotional learning (56)

In the Classroom

Find resources to educate yourself and your students about various topics related to social-emotional learning. This collection includes lesson plans, digital check-ins, toolkits, professional resources, and more. Share this curated list with your colleagues and families.

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Problem-Based Learning Resources - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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Problem-based learning is a curriculum design method that offers learners challenging, open-ended problems. The hands-on learning activities offer investigations of real-world problems....more
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Problem-based learning is a curriculum design method that offers learners challenging, open-ended problems. The hands-on learning activities offer investigations of real-world problems. Problem-based learning allows students to develop lifelong learning skills, gain work-place readiness, and improve team-work and cooperative learning strategies. View this collection to begin your journey with problem-based learning in your classroom.

tag(s): Problem Based Learning (10), problem solving (213), STEM (219)

In the Classroom

Help your students to practice problem-solving skills using these engaging resources. Share these resources with your colleagues and school parents by emailing the page or sharing the link from your school web page and in your school newsletter.

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Project-Based Learning - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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Project-based learning is a dynamic teaching method that encourages students to gain knowledge by working to actively explore problems and investigate authentic and complex questions...more
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Project-based learning is a dynamic teaching method that encourages students to gain knowledge by working to actively explore problems and investigate authentic and complex questions or challenges. This curated list includes project-based learning resources for all grades.

tag(s): problem solving (213), Project Based Learning (10)

In the Classroom

Find new tools to try in your classroom to create project-based learning! Each review includes classroom use ideas. Read the details of each tool and find the ones that will work best for your students.

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Social Media Resources - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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Social media in education offers students the ability to connect with learning groups and easily find useful information. As educators, it is pivotal to teach students the benefits...more
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Social media in education offers students the ability to connect with learning groups and easily find useful information. As educators, it is pivotal to teach students the benefits of using social media, as well as the proper (and safe) way to use these types of tools. This collection provides professional learning for educators using social media in the classroom, tools to organize and share social media, plus some social media favorites (such as Twitter and Pinterest).

tag(s): social media (47)

In the Classroom

Explore this collection to find tools for yourself (and your students) to use to connect with others and find information using social media.

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Resources to Develop a Positive Self-Identity - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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Encourage your students to develop positive self-identities based on their membership in various groups in society. Help your students to feel confident to express pride and healthy...more
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Encourage your students to develop positive self-identities based on their membership in various groups in society. Help your students to feel confident to express pride and healthy self-esteem about their own self-identity, without devaluing the dignity of those that may be different than they are. The resources shared in this section help teachers to enable students to recognize that people have multiple identities and are members of multiple groups within our society, creating complex and unique individuals.

tag(s): bias (17), difficult conversations (44), identity (26)

In the Classroom

Find resources to educate yourself and your students about various topics related to self-identity. This collection includes lesson plans, blogs, book suggestions, and interactives too. Share these resources with your colleagues and families.

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Resources Related to Difficult Conversations - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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As teachers, we frequently tackle uncomfortable subjects in the classroom, but polarizing public conversations or events in the news can sometimes make these subjects downright difficult...more
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As teachers, we frequently tackle uncomfortable subjects in the classroom, but polarizing public conversations or events in the news can sometimes make these subjects downright difficult to discuss with students. The resources in this collection will give you ideas on how to start and facilitate tough conversations about topics like inequality, injustice, and politics sensitively while still accomplishing learning goals. You'll also find lessons and activities to encourage respectful conversation, inclusivity, empathy, and understanding.

tag(s): difficult conversations (44), empathy (27), racism (68)

In the Classroom

Explore this collection to use to engage in difficult conversations in your classroom. Learn more about difficult conversations and empathy for others in some of the informational readings.

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Understanding Empathy - TeachersFirst

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K to 12
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Empathy is our desire and ability to understand and share another person's feelings and use that information to guide our actions. It's the foundation of respect and inclusivity and...more
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Empathy is our desire and ability to understand and share another person's feelings and use that information to guide our actions. It's the foundation of respect and inclusivity and is an essential component of relationship building, resolving interpersonal conflicts, and understanding cause and effect. In this collection, we share resources that will help you create lessons and experiences that cultivate empathy in your students and informational websites about this important topic.

tag(s): empathy (27), perspective (11), racism (68)

In the Classroom

Help your students to develop empathy for others. Share these resources with your colleagues and school parents by emailing the page or sharing the link from your school web page or on your school's LMS.

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Resources on Racism and Discrimination - TeachersFirst

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K to 12
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As educators, it's our duty to teach our students to respect people of all races, genders, orientations, and cultures, both in our classroom and in the outside world. Racism, sexism,...more
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As educators, it's our duty to teach our students to respect people of all races, genders, orientations, and cultures, both in our classroom and in the outside world. Racism, sexism, and orientation discrimination can be difficult topics to broach in the classroom but are essential to discuss as students find their voices and form their understanding of the world. In this collection, we share resources about combatting racism, lesson plans about the human cost of discrimination, and additional activities to spark meaningful discussion and encourage students at all grade levels to treat all people with respect.

tag(s): black history (80), empathy (27), racism (68)

In the Classroom

Find resources to educate yourself and your students about various topics related to racism and discrimination. This collection includes lesson plans and interactives too. Share these resources with your colleagues and families.

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Understanding Public Health Crises - TeachersFirst

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K to 12
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The potential of a pandemic spread in our schools and among young people is a major concern. TeachersFirst's editors have collected this helpful information for teachers, students,...more
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The potential of a pandemic spread in our schools and among young people is a major concern. TeachersFirst's editors have collected this helpful information for teachers, students, and parents to better understand pandemics, how they spread, and what you can do to stay healthy. We have also included numerous resources sharing ways that teachers are available to help through remote teaching, disseminating correct information, teaching students media literacy, and promoting proper hygiene. Share these resources with your colleagues and families to keep them informed during public health crises.

tag(s): h1n1 (6), hygiene (10), media literacy (89)

In the Classroom

Help your students to stay healthy and avoid fear by sharing the facts and prevention tips in these resources. Share these resources with your colleagues and school parents by emailing the page or sharing the link from your school web page and in your school newsletter.

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Resources for Storage - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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From storing photos to videos to other content, we've got you covered with this collection of resources for storage. Storage isn't something that we often think about when planning...more
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From storing photos to videos to other content, we've got you covered with this collection of resources for storage. Storage isn't something that we often think about when planning our lessons and activities, yet sometimes finding ways to store information online can present a challenge. Don't forget our "In the Classroom" suggestions to read ideas about how to use the tools with your students.

tag(s): Storage (6)

In the Classroom

Use these resources to find tools for your storage needs. Share this list on your class website for students to find tools for storage.

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Classroom Management Resources - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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Classroom management covers a wide range of tasks or routines: collecting assignments, designing seating charts, promoting positive behaviors, creating cooperative learning groups,...more
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Classroom management covers a wide range of tasks or routines: collecting assignments, designing seating charts, promoting positive behaviors, creating cooperative learning groups, and so much more. If you are looking for some new tools to ensure that your classroom lessons run smoothly and disruptive behaviors are kept to a minimum, check out this collection to maximize your management. Classroom management matters at all grade levels and we have tools for all ages and for all subjects.

tag(s): classroom management (139), Teacher Utilities (114)

In the Classroom

Find management tips and tools to make your class run smoother. Share this collection with your colleagues.

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Tools to Create Media - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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Media comes in all shapes and sizes: videos, podcasts, posters, digital stories, and much more. This curated list includes some of our best tools for creating media in the K-12 ...more
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Media comes in all shapes and sizes: videos, podcasts, posters, digital stories, and much more. This curated list includes some of our best tools for creating media in the K-12 classroom. Remember our, "In the Classroom," suggestions give you ideas about how to use these tools in your classroom -- interested in more? See our complete list of tools related to many types of media: videos, digital design, presentations, and digital storytelling.

tag(s): digital storytelling (129), podcasts (62), posters (43), video (242)

In the Classroom

Find new tools to try in your classroom to create some cool media! Each review includes classroom use ideas. Read the details of each tool and find the ones that will make your tasks easier to manage and engage your students.

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