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KENKEN - Nextoy, LLC

Grades
4 to 12
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The KENKEN craze is spreading quickly across the world! Created in 2004 by Japanese Math Teacher, Tetsuya Miyamoto, these puzzles are fun, educational, and addictive. At first, these...more
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The KENKEN craze is spreading quickly across the world! Created in 2004 by Japanese Math Teacher, Tetsuya Miyamoto, these puzzles are fun, educational, and addictive. At first, these puzzles appear very similar to Sudoku puzzles. They have a few added components (more math and logic required). There are various levels of difficulties (3x3 puzzles through 9x9 puzzles). For 3x3 puzzles, you use only numbers 1-3, for 4x4 puzzles you use only numbers 1-4, and so on. At the time of our review of this brand-new puzzle, the 3x3 puzzles had not been created. But they add new puzzles daily, so check back! The rules are simple: each number can only be used once in any row or column. There are also "cages" which are represented by heavily outlined sets of squares. The goal is to produce the target number (in the corner of the cage). Numbers can be repeated within one cage, just so the number is not already in the row or column. Want to learn more? View the How to Play link that includes written instructions and a tutorial video. Puzzles are also PRINTABLE. Don't miss the link for teachers. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): addition (227), division (161), logic (247), multiplication (212), puzzles (203), subtraction (187), sudoku (16), vision (79)

In the Classroom

Introduce this site on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students explore the puzzles on their own. Use this site to differentiate for various students. Be certain to save this site in your favorites and check back often. List this link on your class website so students can "play" both in and out of the classroom. Have older students attempt to create their own KENKEN puzzles. It's not as easy as you think.
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Language is a Virus - Unknown

Grades
6 to 12
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In spite of the annoying ads, the rich choices of writing ideas, prompts, exercises, and "widgets" on this site are well worth the time to digest and wade through. There's ...more
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In spite of the annoying ads, the rich choices of writing ideas, prompts, exercises, and "widgets" on this site are well worth the time to digest and wade through. There's so much! There are 17 "widgets" for curing writer's block: Electronic Poetry, Haiku-a-Tron, Character Name, Text Collage, Creative Writing Prompts, Random Line Generator, and MANY others. There are also 7 links to post your fiction and poetry, 2 sections on creative writing and prompts (including 60+ writing experiments by Charles Bernstein), poetry links, visual inspiration, and a long list of authors you can click on to read articles or see questions answered, plus more articles and extras.

To post any stories or poems at Language is a Virus you must be registered. The log-in process does require an email address. If you plan to have students register individually, you may want to create your own Gmail account with up to 20 subaccounts for each group of students (by code name or number) within your classes. Here is a blog post that tells how to set up GMail subaccounts to use for any online membership service.

Before having students post anything on this site, check your school's Acceptable Use Policy and BE CERTAIN to obtain parental permission. Be aware this site has several advertisements and includes Twitter Buttons, Badges, Backgrounds, and Images. Be sure to provide students with specific instructions of where they MAY and may NOT go. Or make this site a whole-class activity (too bad, though, since writing is so individual).

tag(s): poetry (221)

In the Classroom

Just using the "Widgets to Cure Writer's Block" section makes writing fun. From Mad-lib poems to a random line generator this offers lots of laughs as well as creativity nudging for students. The "66 Writing Experiments of Charles Bernstein" offers a variety of activities for students from sentence combining to poetry to transcription to chronology.

Share the prompts and activities on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students work on individual computers to use these activities to cure their writer's block. Just be sure to give instructions of where they can and can't visit! Keep your pop-up blocker turned ON to avoid at least some of the annoying advertising.
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Blues Journey - Kennedy Center

Grades
9 to 12
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If you are looking for an interactive site that combines music with theatre and culture, this is a good one. Incorporating the "page to the stage" idea, the site allows ...more
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If you are looking for an interactive site that combines music with theatre and culture, this is a good one. Incorporating the "page to the stage" idea, the site allows students to read about the main character and background and then listen to the blues with an introduction by Scot Reese, the director of the play. Students can see clips of the actual play, too. Another section deals with the music and includes a history and a walkthrough to the present. Don't miss the interactive map! This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): blues (17), chicago (5), jazz (16), louisiana (11), mississippi (6)

In the Classroom

Students will love listening to the clips as well as watching the play excerpts. Share the clips on your interactive whiteboard or projector. The site invites them to try the blues themselves, and this is a good class or small group exercise. Use this site in music or U.S. history classes. Have students write a fictitious blog from the viewpoint of one of the music composers: what were they thinking? What was their life like? In music class, have students compose their own "Blues." Video the songs and share them on using TeacherTube (explained here). Gifted students, especially those with an interest in music, could use this site as a springboard for their own compositions.
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Written in Bone: The Secret in the Cellar - Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History

Grades
5 to 12
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This site, The Secret in the Cellar, offers a "webcomic" based on a TRUE story. This story mixes some history, science, forensics, and more to create an authentic mystery for...more
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This site, The Secret in the Cellar, offers a "webcomic" based on a TRUE story. This story mixes some history, science, forensics, and more to create an authentic mystery for students to read and solve. The mystery involves the discovery of a 17th Century body. Who is he or she? How did he or she die? Use photos, graphics, and online activities to unravel this history mystery! Analyze artifacts, examine the skeleton, and determine the cause of death.

Be sure to turn off your pop-up blocker to experience all the features. There is a link to Print & Help, there you can download the entire webcomic and all supporting documents. There is also an optional feedback survey at the end of the webcomic. This site requires Flash and Adobe Acrobat. You can get both from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): anthropology (12), forensics (26), fossils (46)

In the Classroom

This site is ideal for entire class viewing, small group exploration, or even as an individual project for students. Share the site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Have your students keep a journal while they view the webcomic, keeping track of the clues and details as they are found. What a great way to teach scientific method, including forming a hypothesis and collecting data before analyzing whether your hypothesis proves correct! Use this site with younger gifted students during a "mystery" unit. Share the site during your lessons on the 17th century, as well.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Mathematics in Movies - Oliver Knill

Grades
6 to 12
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This site features engaging movie scenes (in Quicktime and Flash formats) that involve Math problems. Beside each clip and title is an explanation of the Math concept in the clip. ...more
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This site features engaging movie scenes (in Quicktime and Flash formats) that involve Math problems. Beside each clip and title is an explanation of the Math concept in the clip. Most are secondary level, but a few are for lower grades. If you click on the TITLE of the movie, you will be lead to a site to purchase, rate, and/or view the movie in its entirety. To avoid this confusion, be sure to click on the "Play the Flash Version or QuickTime" links. These links lead directly to the "math clip." Links at the bottom lead to other movie collections websites.

tag(s): logic (247), movies (70), patterns (87)

In the Classroom

Use the links "Begin of Lectures in College teaching" and "The end of lectures in college teaching" to identify effective and ineffective teaching elements at all levels. Use these clips for anticipatory set or activators at the start of a lesson or introduction of a concept. Share the video clips on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Discuss the concepts as a class or have students work in cooperative learning groups. See if students can identify any other movie or television show that has used math concepts. If time permits, have students create their own mini-dramas that include discussion of math concepts within the story.
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Modern Languages - Learning Space Open University

Grades
8 to 12
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This site offers free courses with a great deal of depth on topics featuring modern European languages and English. It is a not a site for beginning language learners or ...more
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This site offers free courses with a great deal of depth on topics featuring modern European languages and English. It is a not a site for beginning language learners or low-level ESL and ELL students. Courses explore language topics, mostly with textual readings. Some of the featured units follow language textbooks. In addition to language topics, there are several offerings in business English. Students can choose what to study in a variety of ways: by topic, time of course, and course number or code.

You can put this in your RSS reader. Some of the activities require Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): business (59)

In the Classroom

Introduce your AP language and world culture students to the materials on this site. Gifted students or those seeking independent language study could also use these courses.Older ESL and ELL students interested in business careers may also find it useful.
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Foreign Languages and Literature - MIT Open Courseware

Grades
8 to 12
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This site offers free comprehensive, interactive language and literature courses developed by MIT staff as part of their open course ware program. All courses include a regular syllabus...more
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This site offers free comprehensive, interactive language and literature courses developed by MIT staff as part of their open course ware program. All courses include a regular syllabus that features assignments, interactive activities, and other resources such as videos and slideshows. There is a wide range of language offerings; the cultural courses complement the language instruction and include topics such as popular culture, history, economics, media , and thinking skills. There are courses at the undergraduate and graduate levels. This site requires Adobe Acrobat. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): chinese (50), french (91), german (66), india (32), japan (60), japanese (45), latin (22), spanish (111)

In the Classroom

AP history, language, and economics students may find MIT's online course materials useful. MIT has committed to putting its entire curriculum on the web, and these early offerings include syllabi, reading materials, and a variety of subject-specific class notes. Before using these pages, students and parents should all be aware of what Open Courseware is and is not. Teachers at smaller schools may welcome the availability of language alternatives. Teachers of gifted who are looking for acceleration options will also find these courses valuable, though you will need to develop a means of doing assessment if your students are to earn credit for them.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Wonder How To - Wonder How To, Inc.

Grades
6 to 12
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This creative site offers "how to" videos on a WIDE variety of topics. Anyone is able to view the videos, but you must be a member (which is free) to ...more
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This creative site offers "how to" videos on a WIDE variety of topics. Anyone is able to view the videos, but you must be a member (which is free) to comment on the videos, grade the videos, or submit your own "how to" video. Topics vary; some are appropriate for the classroom - others are definitely NOT appropriate. Some of the general topics that may be useful in the middle school or high school classroom include: alcohol, autos, motorcycles, and planes, business and money, computers and programming, diet and health, education (which features a variety of science experiments and more), film and theater, language (English, Chinese, Hungarian, Russian, Finnish, sign language, Polish, and countless others), music and instruments, travel, and several other topics. Within each of these general topics, there are thousands of specific "how to" videos.

Membership is free and has many perks. You are able to comment and/or grade the video clips or even submit your own video. Registration does require some personal information: a username, password, email address, and date of birth. ALL USERS MUST BE OVER 13-years of age! Check with your administrator about allowing the students to register for this site using fictitious names. You may wish to set up a class registration instead of entering true data into the registration site. Another option is to create a free Gmail account to use for memberships. If you plan to have students register individually, you may want to create your own Gmail account with up to 20 subaccounts for each group of students (by code name or number) within your classes. Here is a blog post that tells how to set up GMail subaccounts to use for any online membership service.

Warning: not all videos are suitable for the classroom. Be sure to preview what you wish to share. If you choose to allow your older students to navigate this site on their own (for research or a class project), be sure to set boundaries on which videos to watch, consequences for going elsewhere, and WATCH CAREFULLY! Some videos explain "how to" do things that are unsafe or inappropriate for school-ages audiences. Wonder How To does include unobtrusive advertisements. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): aircraft (25), business (59), money (186), russian (28), sign language (8)

In the Classroom

Use these fabulous "how to" videos for informative writing projects in speech, science, or even with your gifted students. The site does provide excellent research. You may want to link directly to the specific videos you want students to see in order to avoid other, less-desirable options. Share the "how to" videos on an interactive whiteboard or projector as an anticipatory set for a new lesson. For a final project, have students create and submit their own "how to" video using YouTube or using a tool such as SchoolTube (reviewed here).

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Sharp Brains - Sharpbrains

Grades
6 to 12
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Do you see the gorilla? Use the basketball mind stretcher to find out! This site offers some traditional and not so traditional mind stretchers. The general topic areas include How...more
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Do you see the gorilla? Use the basketball mind stretcher to find out! This site offers some traditional and not so traditional mind stretchers. The general topic areas include How Your Brain Works, Attention, Memory, Pattern Recognition and Planning, Visual Workouts, Visual Illusions, Language and Logic, and others. Some of the activities are quick (less than a minute) while others require more time. The activities could be used in many subject areas; there are language activities, math, general logic, and even some for physical education.

Be aware: each mind stretcher activity includes a blog. Some of the blog comments may not be appropriate, so be sure to READ any blogs that you plan to share. You may want to make these activities a group challenge, rather than individual exploration. Many are interactive and require Flash or Java. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): brain (68), logic (247), puzzles (203), stress (14)

In the Classroom

Start your class (any subject area) with a mind stretcher or include this as part of a psychology or biology lesson on how the brain works. Share the puzzle or challenge on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Challenge your students to create their own logic activities and create a class "Logic" wiki.
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Shakespeare's Staging - Regents University of California

Grades
11 to 12
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This great site gives serious Shakespeare students something to dig into deeply. Of particular interest is a full-length, documentary video titled "Shakespeare and the Spanish Connection."...more
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This great site gives serious Shakespeare students something to dig into deeply. Of particular interest is a full-length, documentary video titled "Shakespeare and the Spanish Connection." The documentary links Spanish and Elizabethan theatres in style of performance, architecture, and background. Find this video by using the search box and Spanish Connection. From the homepage, you can look at galleries (basically online picture albums) of Shakespearean productions from the 16th to the 20th centuries. Clicking on the "Videos" tab will enable you watch short excerpts of plays performed in various venues including open air theatres. Due to the academic nature of the presentations, this is probably best used with upperclassmen or gifted students who have some familiarity with the Elizabethan Renaissance and Shakespeare. The videos require Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): literature (272), shakespeare (111)

In the Classroom

The ideas presented on this site offer imaginative teachers great scope. Using the short videos and/or the albums as jumping off points, students can create their own videos of their own productions. Share the videos on YouTube or another tool such as SchoolTube (reviewed here).

One of the central topics can be the ease or difficulty in staging some of the scenes. Since there are several of the videos where actors describe the experiences playing certain characters as well as short documentaries showing authentic Elizabethan music, dance, etc., students can incorporate their own ideas in making their own scenes more genuine.
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Puzzlers Paradise - Shelly Hazard

Grades
2 to 10
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This site offers some fabulous (and addicting) mind stretchers. There are both visual and verbal puzzles. There is also a puzzle archive featuring a variety of puzzles for various grade...more
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This site offers some fabulous (and addicting) mind stretchers. There are both visual and verbal puzzles. There is also a puzzle archive featuring a variety of puzzles for various grade levels. Some of the puzzles are interactive and you complete them online, while others are printable. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): logic (247), puzzles (203)

In the Classroom

Save this site in your favorites. Use a logic puzzle as a class opener to "warm up" brains. Display the puzzle on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Print out the logic puzzles for students to complete for additional enrichment. Use this site with your gifted students. Provide a link to this site on your class website for students to use at home. Challenge your students to create some puzzlers of their own and share them on a class wiki.
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Remember The Milk - Remember the Milk.com

Grades
K to 12
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Your busy life needs a manager. Now you have one: RememberTheMilk.com (also known as RTM). Don't worry about missing a date; any or all of these applications or programs will ...more
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Your busy life needs a manager. Now you have one: RememberTheMilk.com (also known as RTM). Don't worry about missing a date; any or all of these applications or programs will remind you: email, SMS, and instant messenger (AIM, Gadu-Gadu, Google Talk, ICQ, Jabber, MSN, Skype and Yahoo) are all supported. Set up a free account in minutes. Secondary students will embrace this tool to remind them of tests or assignments or sporting events. List making has made it to a whole new level.

tag(s): DAT device agnostic tool (180), organizational skills (128), time (141)

In the Classroom

Read the Blog at this site to learn many cool ways to interact with your personal computer an devices using RTM. Learning support teachers and teachers of disorganized gifted students may want to "model" using such an online tool to help middle and high school students learn better personal organization. Make a demo account for a "mythical" student and organize him/her together so students can see how it works. You will have to check school policies and access to some of the messaging tools, however, since some may be prohibited in your school. Learning support and gifted teachers will welcome this online tool as an engaging way for students to become better-organized. Give students a tech tool, and they just might try it!

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Olympics Resources - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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Winter or summer, the Olympics provide teaching opportunities across the curriculum for students of all ages. Browse these options for curriculum connections to light the Olympic flame...more
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Winter or summer, the Olympics provide teaching opportunities across the curriculum for students of all ages. Browse these options for curriculum connections to light the Olympic flame in your classroom.

tag(s): china (63), olympics (52)

In the Classroom

Use these Olympics resources to plan an entire unit during the Olympics or make them available as links from your teacher web page for enrichment if the Olympics fall during school breaks. Not enough time for an Olympics unit? Perhaps students can use these links to generate ideas and projects to share on an Olympics extra credit wiki. Teachers of gifted will find many ways to spark new projects usig these links.

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Math Moves U - Raytheon Company

Grades
4 to 12
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Let math move YOU through different areas of math practice! Choose an animal character and customize the color of the collar, fur, and tail. Choose your grade range prior to ...more
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Let math move YOU through different areas of math practice! Choose an animal character and customize the color of the collar, fur, and tail. Choose your grade range prior to play. Other options include saving your character to begin or registering to create a locker for extra benefits, including access to new characters and monitoring of your progress. . Use the arrows on the keyboard to move along to different math problems. Areas vary by age level, but examples include Music (Pythagorean Pavilion), Sports, Fashion and feature facts, quizzes, polls, flashcards, or a game that can be accessed for learning opportunities. Facts have links that allow students to connect to more knowledge. Tutorial help is available with the quizzes. Background music which is lively can also be turned off for better concentration. Enter Math Moves University for worksheet practice on many math topics downloaded as a pdf document. A math dictionary is also available. Clicking on the navigation along the top can also take you to various areas.

Opportunities to register pop up during play but are not required at this site.
If you choose to have your students register, please be aware of your district's requirements and acceptable use policy for using student user names, passwords, and emails.
This site requires Flash and adobe acrobat. Get both from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): charts and graphs (198), data (162), decimals (125), fractions (229), negative numbers (21), numbers (197), percent (81)

In the Classroom

Differentiate your math instruction easily! Use as assigned, independent study for students as needed. Use as a class resource on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students work collaboratively in groups to achieve the answers. Assign areas as homework practice; if computers aren't available at home, print off the worksheets for homework practice.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Open Book Scenarios - Teaching Australia

Grades
K to 12
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This professional resource offers a possible look (scenarios) into the future of education. This site is a good illustration of the fact that teachers all around the world are aware...more
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This professional resource offers a possible look (scenarios) into the future of education. This site is a good illustration of the fact that teachers all around the world are aware of the changes that are necessary in education to respond to new technologies and globalization. The goal of the scenarios is to look at the possible education system in Australia in 2030. The creators narrowed down the futuristic world into four categories/scenarios. The first scenario offers a tolerant and harmonious society. The second scenario depicts a highly competitive world. Scenario three represents the society as polarized. The final scenario shows a world violent and fractured. The seeds of each of the possible societies are visible today. The scenarios demonstrate the importance of engaging with change and how THAT creates your ability to anticipate issues in the future, raise awareness, and create change! Click on Teaching for Uncertain Futures to view the book in its entirety. The links require Adobe Acrobat. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): australia (37)

In the Classroom

Teacher ed institutions and graduate classes you are taking on contemporary issues in education may want to explore these scenarios for discussion. Even high school classes exploring careers or trends in current events may discuss the reshaping of education over the next 20+ years as today's high schoolers become tomorrow's teachers. Teachers of Gifted working with forecasting and futures will find this an interesting model.

Any teacher planing to remain in the profession will want to think about how these scenarios might affect YOUR classroom in some way in the near future.
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Digital Vaults - National Archives

Grades
3 to 12
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This site offers digitized National Archives of the U.S. organized according to general category. You can finally explore and share primary source documents interactively through this...more
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This site offers digitized National Archives of the U.S. organized according to general category. You can finally explore and share primary source documents interactively through this Flash site. Start from eight featured topics. For a more in depth look at each subject and its associated categories, click on What's Interesting. A search feature is also available. An added feature at the bottom of the opening page is the "Pathways" tab. Students can participate in a "challenge" (in different levels) to find links between certain historical items. Students can also create their own pathways, writing about connections they find between certain archived items. In another section, students can create their own historical posters and movies from the archives. You can create a collection of items from the archives to retrieve or look at later, as well. This feature requires a free membership created by email address. There are also extensive lesson ideas and information for teachers at the small link, "Educators and Students," at the bottom of the page. Roll your mouse down to find it against the dark background. Note: the entire site is done in Flash (an HTML version is available from a small link at the bottom of the page). Get Flash from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): inventors and inventions (91), primary sources (93)

In the Classroom

Use 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 you plan to have students register individually, you may want to create your own Gmail account with up to 20 subaccounts for each group of students (by code name or number) within your classes. Here is a blog post that tells how to set up GMail subaccounts to use for any online membership service.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.

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Interactive Mathematics Miscellany and Puzzles - Alexander Bogomolny

Grades
3 to 12
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Although we don't usually highlight a site that is simply a list, this list is worth mentioning. There are literally hundreds of math activities at this site (all Java applets). ...more
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Although we don't usually highlight a site that is simply a list, this list is worth mentioning. There are literally hundreds of math activities at this site (all Java applets). The activities are divided up into the following categories: Arithmetic, Math Games & Puzzles, Logic, Fractals & Chaos, Fallacies, Calculus, Combinatorial Games, Algebra, Visual Illusions, Computer Math Magic, Combinatorics, Geometry, Eye Opener Series, Social Science, Mathematical Droodles, and Analog Devices. Each category has numerous interactive activities included. The site is frequently updated. There are some small advertisements at the site. This site is simple to use and offers a wealth of options for many grade levels. The activities are not time-consuming and offer simple explanations with the applets.

tag(s): angles (88), logic (247), money (186), puzzles (203)

In the Classroom

Use these applets on an interactive whiteboard or projector as an anticipatory set for a lesson in math class. Have students work independently on the logic and puzzle activities. These activities are ideal for gifted students (for advancement and/or enrichment) or extra practice for struggling students. Provide this link on your class website, so students can explore at home or as review.

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Interactive whiteboard Resources for Teachers - Teacher LED

Grades
K to 12
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This site has great simulations in Math that can be used with an Interactive Whiteboard. Math categories include "Algebra," "Data Handling," "Number," "Shape, Space, and Measure," and...more
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This site has great simulations in Math that can be used with an Interactive Whiteboard. Math categories include "Algebra," "Data Handling," "Number," "Shape, Space, and Measure," and "General Maths." Specific topics include "Reading Scales," "Rotational Symmetry," "Shop Addition," "Prime Snakes," and "Number Cylinder." Information and ideas for use on each Interactive can be found both on the site and as an Adobe PDF download. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): addition (227), data (162), division (161), multiplication (212), numbers (197), prime numbers (31), subtraction (187), symmetry (51), vision (79)

In the Classroom

Show difficult-to-understand concepts on the interactive whiteboard or projector. Use these Interactives by having students predict outcomes and then carry out the experiment, such as in rolling die to determine probabilities. Students can then apply the information to a new set of problems. Use many of the interactives as a class game. Though perfect for the whiteboard, they can also be used on individual computers or as a computer learning station.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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What's Special About This Number - Erich Friedman

Grades
4 to 12
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This unusual website shares the "uniqueness" of a multitude of numbers. The numbers range from 0 - 9,999. This website teaches you what the only even prime number is, what ...more
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This unusual website shares the "uniqueness" of a multitude of numbers. The numbers range from 0 - 9,999. This website teaches you what the only even prime number is, what a narcissistic number is, what the smallest number with 14 divisors is, and a LOT of other interesting mind-stretching information. The highlight of this website is the ability to click on math terms to learn more about the topic.

tag(s): angles (88), median (23), numbers (197), roman numerals (9), vocabulary (320)

In the Classroom

This is one of those sites that you have see to appreciate. Share the site on an interactive whiteboard. In more advanced classes, project a number on the screen as students walk in. Have students try to figure out what might make this number "special." Have students share their responses. This is a great "number of the day/mind-stretcher of the day" activity.

Or have students work on individual computers. Choose several of the numbers that relate to a topic that you are teaching (such as the square root), and have individual students learn about the number and then teach the class what they learned. Extend the idea by having students create "what's special" PowerPoint slides or wiki pages about favorite numbers. What better way to develop true number sense and excitement about math as a mental game.

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Mysterious Places: Ancient Civilizations Modern Mysteries - Mysterious Places

Grades
4 to 12
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Students are always fascinated by the mysteries of the past, and wondering how those in ancient history managed feats of construction that would be difficult even today. Perhaps nothing...more
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Students are always fascinated by the mysteries of the past, and wondering how those in ancient history managed feats of construction that would be difficult even today. Perhaps nothing sparks student interest more than the phrase, "no one knows". This site seeks to explore several "mysterious places" in the world--places whose origins or purposes are lost to antiquity. In addition, the sponsors of the site hope to raise money to ensure these monuments are not endangered in the future. Currently, the featured locations include Easter Island, Stonehenge, the dwellings of the Tellem people of Mali, West Africa, and the Mayan cities of Mexico (still under construction). Each section contains stunning photography, and a variety of resources on the history and mystery of the site. A section entitled "educator link" promises lesson plans and other teachers' resources, but is not finished. The site offers great potential, some of which has already been realized. It's worth checking out now, and perhaps in the future when more of its resources are up and running. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): africa (166), mayans (14), mysteries (22)

In the Classroom

This site might be offered to students doing independent research or included as "real" mysteries during a reading or literature unit on mysteries. The information could augment a lesson plan from a standard text with its lovely photos. It could be an option for exploration by accelerated students who have completed a unit on ancient history. Teachers should be aware that there is an on-line forum as a part of this site which requires registration. Its content is completely peripheral to the site, and students should simply be instructed to avoid it.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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