Grades7 to 9
Although some of the activities are not highly interactive (some are simple online quizzes), they are well done and could be very useful in the classroom. There are also interactive diagrams and more. Some of the pages do have advertisements, but they are not distractive. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.
In the ClassroomCheck out the eclectic mix of activities available at this website. Share it with your students on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Use this site for enrichment, learning stations, or as a whole class activity, depending on the subject matter. List this site on your class website for students to use for additional practice at home.
Grades6 to 12
Warning: Be sure to PREVIEW each section before you show it to the class since there is some profanity in the speech of some characters.
In the ClassroomIn light of the increase of hurricane activity, this is a wonderful resource to introduce this weather topic. Use it also in art class, graphic design, and with ESL and ELL students learning to tell stories. Use this site to introduce the world of graphic novels to students who are reluctant readers. Have your class make their own graphic novel about another catastrophic or historical event, either in groups or individually. Check with your administration to be sure it's OK to use this site at student computers since there are spaces for students to respond and also to submit their own work. If that's a problem, use it with your classroom computer and project the novel on the whiteboard (avoiding scenes with questionable vocabulary). Extend the lesson by having students create their own collaborative graphic account of a local history event or fictional tale in small groups.
Grades4 to 8
tag(s): maryland (8)
In the ClassroomUse this site for individual research projects about the eight famous places listed at this site. Assign cooperative learning groups to explore the sites together. Use the link for Shady Side to introduce peninsulas to your students. "Take" your students to the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis without leaving school.
Grades3 to 9
In the ClassroomStart your exploration at the link for teachers Classroom Resources. The lesson plans (which include standards) are ready to go and easy to use. Share the video clips on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Use this site for research projects. Have students write fictitious blog posts pretending they are traveling the Underground Railroad or an illustrated wiki account of their travels.
Grades3 to 9
In the ClassroomDuring your Colonial Unit, share the video of the "Diary of the Colonial - Jenny Steiner." Check out all of the lesson plans when teaching about the history of the 13 colonies, slavery, plantation life, life in the 1600s and 1700s. Be sure to read the teacher tips for more ideas. This site is also an excellent resource for research on individual states or colonies (Maryland).
My fifth graders LOVE this website. Well done.Gail, MI, Grades: 4 - 6
My fifth graders LOVED this website.Gail, MI, Grades: 4 - 6
Grades3 to 8
In the ClassroomUse this site to teach your students about the importance of plastics in medicine, cooking, and everyday life. Have students try the interactive challenge with a partner. Use this site for research projects on inventions. Have students brainstorm a list of things that they use that are made from plastics. Try some of the science experience (Slime, Anyone) -- sure to excite your students, and possibly get them a bit messy.
GradesK to 12
Plan to spend some time reading through the directions and trying out this tool before you assign it to students. Teachers and students must register and login each time they use this tool. Students can share the URL for their posters with grandparents or parents to show off their good work!
Students will need to know how to locate and upload a file for an image (such as a digital picture) to place it in their poster. If you allow them to use images from the web, the tool asks them to give information on their image source, as well (hooray for ethical use of the Internet!). If you use digital pictures of students, be SURE that you do NOT use full names on the site. You should get parent permission for uploading any student images, even if anonymous.
This site includes advertising.
tag(s): posters (41)
In the ClassroomSome uses for this simple tool: book reports (take a digital photo of the book cover), biographical posters of famous people (images from the web), "all about me" posters, posters about community members such as veterans of World War II whom students interview and photograph, author posters, fictitious character studies, science posters on processes or terms with accompanying digital pictures to illustrate, etc. The possibilities are endless. Once students know the tool, they can use it over and over.
Teachers, make sure you select the archive option to keep student projects live online for more than a month. Use the Teacher Feature option to create one web page of your class' archived projects. You will want to put your created web page link prominently on your class homepage.
Grades3 to 12
In the ClassroomStart out at the "for educators" link for some great ideas to create an interdisciplinary lesson using Picasso in art, social studies, language arts, or math class. Use this site for research projects. In art class, use your interactive whiteboard or projector to show students an up close look at several of Picasso's paintings. Analyze and notate the paintings' composition using the whiteboard tools!
Grades3 to 8
This site does have some minor advertisements. This site requires Flash. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.
In the ClassroomUse this activity as practice with states state capitals, or state shapes. Your visual and kinesthetic learners will benefit from this different approach. This site is accessible to ESL and ELL students; provide them with a map of the states and they can use this activity to familiarize themselves with state names, pronunciation, shape, location, etc.
This site is "interactive whiteboard ready." Try the activity as a class challenge (at the beginning of social studies class). Have students take turns "drawing" the state, and then use the "quiz" questions a class (or team) activity. Once students are familiar with this site, allow them to explore on their own. Have students create their own dot to dot state papers and quizzes to share with the class.
Grades3 to 12
"Lit trips" can be reviewed by users so teachers can see comments left by other users. This site uses Google Earth which must be downloaded first. Find full info on Google Earth in the TeachersFirst review, including the link to download.
In the ClassroomEach "lit trip" is extensively annotated and linked to further content, making this an incredibly rich resource for teachers to use in conjunction with teaching works of literature. Students can see graphically the travels of such characters as the Joads in The Grapes of Wrath , or Odysseus in Homer's Odyssey . Using these lit trips on an interactive whiteboard or projector will greatly enhance a class study of the associated work of literature. Alternatively, students might be encouraged to explore these lit trips independently, at home, or in a computer lab, so they can follow links that are of particular individual interest. As a really ambitious project, make it a class task to create a lit trip for a work of literature you are studying, assigning student groups to choose locations and create the placemarkers, then submit it to the Lit Trips site.
Grades1 to 12
In the ClassroomWith younger grades, use an interactive whiteboard or projector to learn the states' locations with the entire group. This simple site would be great to use in your computer center for individual learning or for some indoor recess enrichment fun. Secondary teachers looking for more than the basics will want to supplement this site with other resources. There is a link for parents and teachers, be sure to take a look!
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomTeachers with interactive whiteboards or projectors will find these maps a natural companion to lessons involving history, geography, and cultural changes. Sometimes seeing a map drawn at the same time as the event under discussion can lend a whole new understanding of the culture of the people being studied. It's far more dramatic to imagine sailing into the unknown on a voyage of discovery while you look at the only maps available to those aboard.
Be sure to have students use the whiteboard tools to draw in their own "corrections" or annotations showing the movement of people or strategies used in battles. Since thee resources are in the public domain, you are allowed to copy them into your whiteboard software and keep the student annotations atop the maps, as well. The maps also make good visuals for "mock" blog entries by historical figures!
Grades6 to 12
The National First Ladies' Library, located in Canton, Ohio, is dedicated to teaching others about the contributions of the First Ladies of the United States, as well as other notable women in U.S. History. In fact, the library is housed in the former home of Ida Saxton McKinley, the wife of President William McKinley. The Library is both a physical resource, but also a comprehensive virtual library of information. The site contains biographies of US First Ladies, lesson plans, and a searchable timeline. There is an online catalog of the many resources available in the library itself; those who do not live nearby could still use the catalog to identify resources associated with former First Ladies. This site requires Adobe Acrobat. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.
In the ClassroomThese resources might be useful to those doing First Lady biographies for Women's History Month or other famous Americans reports. Students doing more in-depth research for History Day projects will find the online catalog helpful. Check out the link to facts and trivia for a good First Ladies Trivia page.
Grades4 to 9
In the ClassroomSave this site in your favorites and use it as a jumping off point for research or lessons on the various topics offered at this site. If you have a history buff in your class, share this site with him/her as a place to spark an individual project, even in world language classes where history and culture are part of the curriculum.
Grades4 to 12
This site includes advertising.
In the ClassroomTour Ancient Mexico as a whole class activity with an interactive whiteboard or projector. If students have access to computers, let groups delve into selected topics and create interactive travel posters and brochures using a tool such as Sway, reviewed here, as their research projects. Students can look at the cities in ruins, explore architectural styles and ceremonial uses of the buildings, and find contemporary examples.
Grades4 to 12
In the ClassroomUse the online lessons to introduce historical topics in whole class activities with an interactive whiteboard or projector. Offline lessons can be used where there is not student access to computers and can be printed and reproduced for classroom use. Students can choose a topic to research, write, and present to the class using the wonderful documentation and photographic collections of the California State Archives.
Grades7 to 12
Teachers can present a sweeping historical overview with any of the nine Big Eras in a few class periods or delve into an era in deeper detail with their students. Each of the nine Big Eras of world history, plus the History, Geography, and Time and the Past and Future sections, offers one Panorama Teaching Unit with a PowerPoint Overview presentation. Panorama units address very large-scale developments in world history through landscape teaching units and close-up teaching units.
Besides helping teachers meet state and national standards, this site offers teachers fabulous research-based curricular activities and makes history into a manageable content area for instruction. The site includes a clickable "Curriculum at a Glance" overview feature that takes you to the standards, teaching units, three essential questions, and seven key themes. This site requires Flash and Adobe. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..
In the ClassroomWorld History for Us All provides teachers pedagogical support to develop both a curriculum and a mindset to present history in a manner that engages students and elicits their curiosity. Complete units are available as web pages or downloadable PDF documents. The PowerPoint presentations can be viewed online or downloaded into PowerPoint on classroom computers. This informational, user-friendly site is a must for new teachers to help augment their adopted textbook. Consider spending an inservice day with your history department exploring the site together.
Grades3 to 12
tag(s): civil rights (121), congress (37), courts (16), first ladies (3), immigration (61), inventors and inventions (85), lewis and clark (17), presidents (124), primary sources (91), slavery (66), womens suffrage (25), world war 1 (56), world war 2 (141)
In the ClassroomUse this site as an anticipatory set for a unit in history or on inventions. Share a collection of images or invention drawings on a projector or whiteboard and ask what the invention will do. Or use the site as the starting point for individual or group projects. After demonstrating on an interactive whiteboard or projector, have students use laptops or lab computers to "collect" resources related to their assigned inventor, decade, or era in American history. Check your school policy regarding accessing student email. If students cannot have their own email accounts, consider using a "class set" of GMail subaccounts (managed by you), explained here. This tells how to set up GMail subaccounts to use for any online membership service. This would provide anonymous interaction within your class. Students can use their log-ins to collect resources.
Since the documents are in the public domain (are not copyrighted), students may also download and use the files as part of other projects, such as video compilations, Powerpoint presentations, or multimedia of any sort. To access the resources in non-Flash format, click the small link to "research this record in ARC" in the detailed view of the item. You can then view and Save As for use elsewhere. Be sure you teach students about copying the URL and relevant information from this ARC page to cite the source and give credit in any presentation they make. This site is excellent for enrichment or projects for the gifted, as well. Include it on your teacher web page for students to access both in and out of class for students who are working in History Day projects or other assignments for your class.