TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of Dec 9, 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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What has the United Nations ever done for you? - The Guardian

Grades
6 to 12
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This interactive offers the opportunity to view what the United Nations has done to help people of all ages from around the world. Choose a persona by entering gender, age, ...more
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This interactive offers the opportunity to view what the United Nations has done to help people of all ages from around the world. Choose a persona by entering gender, age, and country to view a list of ways the United Nations has had a positive influence on their situation. Categories include items such as Human Rights, Child Mortality, and Cultural Heritage. The site was created in the UK, so some of the pronunciations and spellings may differ from those in American English.
This site includes advertising.

In the Classroom

Introduce this site on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Allow students to explore on their own. Social studies teachers will want to bookmark this interactive for use throughout the year as students learn about different countries and cultures. Instead of paper notecards enhance student learning by having them use Simplenote, reviewed here, to take digital notes; tell students to be sure to save the URL to share their notes and questions with you and their peers. updates across all devices Then, modify learning by challenging students create a simple infographic sharing their findings using Easel.ly, reviewed here, to explain what they learned from this site.

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Breaking News Generator - Russell Tarr

Grades
4 to 12
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Design professional looking front pages for a newspaper with this tool. Simply fill in the pertinent information (headline, date, place, and more) and an image. Share via URL, Twitter,...more
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Design professional looking front pages for a newspaper with this tool. Simply fill in the pertinent information (headline, date, place, and more) and an image. Share via URL, Twitter, or download to your computer. There is also the ability to save a blank template. Be sure to view the several samples available, and click on the little question mark at the end of the title to see ideas for use of this tool. No registration is necessary.

In the Classroom

Assess students prior knowledge by creating a Breaking News piece to introduce a new unit. Replace paper and pencil and ask students to fill in an interactive KWL chart from Holt, reviewed here, or discuss in small groups what they know about the topic. Transform student learning by using in presentation slides by downloading the image from your computer. Then upload the image to a slide presentation creator such as Slidestory, reviewed here. Suggest to students that they do the same for their presentations. Use as a timeline of events for lab experiment, a novel study, historical event, and more. You might want to think about using this tool as a storyboard for digital storytelling; printing blank templates would work well for storyboarding.

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Sharalike - Aymeric Vigneras and Etienne Leroy

Grades
K to 12
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Sharalike is a simple and beautiful tool to create slideshows. Import images and use the drag and drop feature to put them in order. Add music from their library or ...more
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Sharalike is a simple and beautiful tool to create slideshows. Import images and use the drag and drop feature to put them in order. Add music from their library or upload your own. Share via email, Twitter, Facebook, embed code, or URL. You may also wish to make your slideshow public and see if it gets featured.

In the Classroom

Sharalike is a great way for students to create and share things that they photograph. Enhance student learning by using Sharalike in the following projects: Challenge students to give oral reports using Sharalike as the visual part of their presentation. Have students take pictures during field trips to use in a Sharalike to display what they saw and learned on the trip. Photograph steps of a science experiment. Alternatively, have students search for Creative Commons and Public Domain images to use as part of a slideshow biography about a prominent person in history. Use to tell the story of the water cycle or another process. Create a Sharalike to use for review of classroom topics. Have students create a Sharalike presentation demonstrating learning in any subject area such as Civil War events, different characteristics of animals, etc. Create a Sharalike for your elementary classroom as part of an informal, sharing presentation. Upload a picture that each student has drawn and have students tell the class about the picture in their own words. What a great way to get young students acclimated to talking in front of a group.

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Sway - Microsoft

Grades
3 to 12
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Use Sway to create interactive presentations across all devices. Drag and drop content from your device, social networks, and the web directly onto your Sway canvas. Log in using your...more
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Use Sway to create interactive presentations across all devices. Drag and drop content from your device, social networks, and the web directly onto your Sway canvas. Log in using your Microsoft account to begin or create a new account using your email and a password. Add content to your storyline using links to add text, images, and media. Change the look of your Sway using the Mood and Remix tools to change the color palette, layout, and fonts. When finished, click the Share button for options to share to Facebook, Twitter, URL, or copy the embed code. Sway will work on any device with a modern Internet browser and an Internet connection. They also have an iOS app. The introduction video and tutorials are hosted on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable.

In the Classroom

Use Sway as an alternative to Prezi or PowerPoint presentations. Sway is perfect for use in your BYOD or 1:1 classroom. Use during your presentations to increase student interest and interaction. Check understanding of your ESL/ELL students by having them respond or pose questions throughout the presentation. Modify or enhance student learning and understanding by sharing with students for them to use during their own presentations, inviting other students to comment and answer questions. During Open House night with parents, demonstrate how Sway provides interaction. Use Sway during professional development presentations to invite discussions from colleagues.

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Highlighting Our History: American Revolution Read-alouds PLUS for the Common Core - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 6
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This "Read-alouds PLUS" article will show you how you can infuse social studies content, specifically the Revolutionary Period, using the power of daily read-alouds. Practice Common...more
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This "Read-alouds PLUS" article will show you how you can infuse social studies content, specifically the Revolutionary Period, using the power of daily read-alouds. Practice Common Core Standards for the English Language Arts while helping your students understand our history and heritage. If you fear that social studies has taken a back seat to tested content, be sure to share this collection with your students. The article includes book suggestions as well as discussion questions and writing activities connected to CCSS Standards. Don't miss our other articles on implementing Common Core in elementary. Some of the book selections may not be ones that your students can read on their own, but they will work well as read-alouds in your social students curriculum.

In the Classroom

Mark this article in your Favorites and take the book suggestions with you to the school library (or search for interlibrary loans). Consider using this as part of a "Then and Now" or "Past and Present" focus in kindergarten or first grade, or with middle elementary students as part of a unit related to the Revolutionary War. Take a look at the suggestions for connecting the read-alouds to CCSS-aligned writing prompts or for short, focused research projects to include as follow-up.

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Created Equal - National Endowment for the Humanities

Grades
9 to 12
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Four documentary films related to the Civil Rights Movement, available to stream either in part or in their entirety, form the centerpiece of this effort from the National Endowment...more
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Four documentary films related to the Civil Rights Movement, available to stream either in part or in their entirety, form the centerpiece of this effort from the National Endowment for the Humanities. The films cover time periods beginning with the Abolitionist Movement and continuing through the Freedom Marches and the turbulent 1960s. Explore the meaning of freedom and equality in the United States with relevance still today. There are teacher resources, lesson plans, and suggestions for aligning lessons to the Common Core.

In the Classroom

The documentaries, or the excerpts presented, are all available to stream from the site. While they may be too lengthy to show in their entirety during one class period, they have also been divided into clips according to themes. For example, Equality is part of the full video about Law and the Strategy of Nonviolence. This makes them more adaptable for classroom use. Share the videos on your interactive whiteboard or projector, or flip your class using EdPuzzle, reviewed here, and have students watch clips at home and come back to class ready to discuss. EdPuzzle is a great way to take sections of videos and add your own voice or add questions within the video. Alternatively, you could use VideoAnt, reviewed here, to enhance student learning with students asking questions about the parts where they need clarification. The issues raised by these Created Equal documentaries may be easily incorporated into lessons related to the Civil Rights Movement, modern U.S. history, Black History Month, or civics and government. Use these videos as conversation starters in the classroom.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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CurriConnects Book List: Childhood Here and There - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This CurriConnects collection of books shares tales of childhood in many cultures and countries. Find books that help you realize that what is "typical" for the kids at your school...more
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This CurriConnects collection of books shares tales of childhood in many cultures and countries. Find books that help you realize that what is "typical" for the kids at your school may seem odd to those who grew up somewhere else. Discover what was typical for our grandparents is not the same as what is typical today. This collection includes tales of growing up in many circumstances, books to make you stop and wonder what "typical childhood" means. CurriConnects thematic book lists include ISBN numbers for ordering or searching, interest grade levels, ESL levels and Lexiles'® (where available) to match student independent reading levels to challenge, not frustrate. For more on text complexity and Lexiles'®, see this information from the Lexile Framework. Don't miss other CurriConnects themes being added regularly. If your library does not have the books, try interlibrary loan!

In the Classroom

Include these books for independent reading during a unit on world cultures, in a guidance class about differences, or in a reading unit about drawing inferences. Spark discussions about what we assume is "normal" and what we should realize about our own upbringing. The conversations will easily evolve into projects where students can compare and contrast or create "profiles" of childhood in different places and cultures.

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Canva - Canva.com

Grades
K to 12
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Canva presents a simple way to design almost anything with drag and drop technology. Create custom posters, business cards, presentations, badges, flyers, charts and graphs, and more...more
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Canva presents a simple way to design almost anything with drag and drop technology. Create custom posters, business cards, presentations, badges, flyers, charts and graphs, and more using a custom layout or a blank page. Begin by choosing the type of design you want to create. Choose pre-made templates or design your own. Upload images from your computer or your Facebook account. Change your background, add text, and personalize as desired. When complete, choose link and publish to save and download your creation as an image or PDF file or copy the link to share via URL. For creating charts and graphs go to the Features tab. There are iOS & Anroid apps (free) available for this tool. Note: you must register (with email and password) before you can access this site.
This site includes advertising.

In the Classroom

Create a slideshow, invitations, or photo collages for any classroom presentation. Share what you created on your website or blog for students to review or for students who were absent. In the younger grades, teachers would be the ones creating the project. However, older students could easily create their own Canva presentations. Have students use this online tool as they would any presentation tool or image enhancing site. Use this site for research projects about famous people from the past and present. Have cooperative learning groups create presentations about science or math topics. Have students create presentations to "introduce" themselves to the class during the first week of school. Link or embed the introduction presentations on your class wiki or website and have others guess who they are. Use this tool with your 1:1 art class for students to practice design principles and techniques. Create 2 to 5 circle Venn Diagrams. Share student projects with parents and others via URL. Be sure to demonstrate HOW to use this tool on your interactive whiteboard or projector.

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Voices of Youth - UNICEF

Grades
6 to 12
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Voices of Youth is UNICEF's online home for young people to know more, learn more, and do more about our world. Read articles, view videos, and share thoughts and opinions ...more
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Voices of Youth is UNICEF's online home for young people to know more, learn more, and do more about our world. Read articles, view videos, and share thoughts and opinions with others around the world on global topics. Topics include poverty, education, human rights, health issues, and much more. Choose from links on the home page to find information on specific topics. Scroll through the page to read the latest posts. Click on tags at the bottom of each article to find related articles. Easily view the site in French or Spanish using links provided at the top of each page. Create your own posts or add comments after registration on the site; use email or use a Facebook or Twitter account to register. Some of the videos are hosted on YouTube. If your school blocks YouTube, they may not be viewable.

In the Classroom

This site is an excellent resource to bookmark and use throughout the year when discussing current events, specific countries or geographic areas, or for non-fiction reading. Find informational texts that matter to your students. Spark informational writing, as well. Allow students to browse the site to find interesting articles. Have students enhance their learning by creating magazine covers of information found on this site using Magazine Cover Maker, reviewed here. Elevate learning by challenging students to create a newspaper article using articles found on this site as a model by using the Newspaper Clipping Generator, reviewed here. World language teachers will find this useful when viewing articles in French or Spanish to practice translation skills.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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IRIN - Humanitarian News and Analysis - UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs

Grades
8 to 12
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This site brings news and analysis on current humanitarian efforts in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. As you help students evaluate and sift through the huge volume of news ...more
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This site brings news and analysis on current humanitarian efforts in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. As you help students evaluate and sift through the huge volume of news content available to you, you can use sites like this to help students focus on specific issues and geographic areas. Much of what is found here will never appear on their Yahoo or Google news feed; that does not diminish its importance. Scroll to the bottom of the page to sort content based on themes like education, gender, health, or human rights, or by continent or country.

In the Classroom

If you focus on current events or on the history or culture of "non-Western" countries, this site should be among your bookmarks or favorites. Encourage students to consider news sources outside of the major US networks or internet based aggregators. Enhance student learning by asking them to create a simple web page sharing their learning and understanding using using Jimdo, reviewed here. Challenge students or student groups to redefine their learning by creating an online, interactive, multimedia poster using Genial.ly, reviewed here, to deliver information about a topic they researched.

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ePals - ePals, Inc.

Grades
2 to 12
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ePals, a global community, offers students the chance to connect with other students around the world (200+ countries). This site is one of the largest worldwide communities for global...more
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ePals, a global community, offers students the chance to connect with other students around the world (200+ countries). This site is one of the largest worldwide communities for global collaboration. Don't worry about student email accounts as they are no longer needed! Don't worry about the language barrier either, there is a built-in language translation! This content-rich site offers a free "how to" webinar on the FAQs page. The program offers teacher to teacher and teacher to student communications, pen pal exchanges, Classroom Collaborative Projects, Spark!Lab Invent It Challenges, and more. In addition, you can click on the Collaborative Projects link to find several ready to use projects (Self Driving Cars, Hamilton, Habitats, Maps, Natural Disasters, Water, and others).

In the Classroom

Navigating this site is rather simple. Simply scroll through the slide show at the top to find your area of interest: Collaboration Projects, Spark!Lab Invent It Challenge, etc. Parts of this site require log-in. Registration does require an email address. A lot of safety features are already put into place at this site. To learn more about the safety features at this site, check out the ePals webinar on YouTube link on the FAQ page.

This site offers an amazing assortment of class activities and possibilities. Collaborate with schools in Africa (or 200 other countries) for a geography project. Have your students find ePals to correspond with and practice writing skills in English or in a language you are studying. Get additional ideas for projects, by visiting the "Projects" link or propose one of your own based on ideas from TeachersFirst suggestions you read in other reviews, lesson plans, and articles. After viewing one of the informative videos, challenge your students to study one of the topics available at this site and redefine their learning by creating their own videos using My Simpleshow, reviewed here. Use a tool such as TeachersTube, to share the video clips, reviewed here.

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Black History Resources - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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These reviewed resources from the TeacherFirst database include teaching ideas, research material, and interactive sites for studying Black History in all grades. ...more
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These reviewed resources from the TeacherFirst database include teaching ideas, research material, and interactive sites for studying Black History in all grades.

In the Classroom

Browse this collection as you approach Black History month or simply to add multi-cultural dimension to many history lessons.

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Humane High School - Humane Society Youth

Grades
6 to 12
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Come to Humane High School to learn all about animal protection, service projects to protect the animals, puppy mills, cruelty to animals, caring for pets, animals in entertainment,...more
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Come to Humane High School to learn all about animal protection, service projects to protect the animals, puppy mills, cruelty to animals, caring for pets, animals in entertainment, and other sensitive topics. This site features video clips (warning: preview before sharing, some are rather graphic), a FREE online course for students, student activity guides, printable PDF pages on HOT topics, and service learning ideas (in the areas of art, business/marketing, drama, language arts, health, physical education, life skills, math, music, science, social studies, technology, world languages, ESL, and ELL). There is also information about the legislative process of protecting animals. This site is geared towards grades 6 through 12. The link Mission: Humane provides even MORE ways to GET INVOLVED!

The Mission: Humane projects have recently won the prestigious Harris Wofford service award from Youth Service America. The projects are provided and easy to understand in a step-by-step format. Be aware: this site does include a Community link that has message boards, registration, and sign-in options (which are not required to use this site), and some other collaborative features. Be sure to watch students carefully if you allow them to navigate this site independently. This site requires Flash and Adobe Acrobat. You can get both from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

In the Classroom

Use this eye opening site in any of the subject areas listed above. Share the videos on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Be sure to check out the activity guides, they are ready to go and very easy to follow. Present this site and an opposing one as part of a discussion of web sites and even or slanted presentation of information. Ask students to decide whether they see any "bias" on this site.

Use this site for research projects. Print off the list of service project ideas for students to use to earn credit in community service. Share the online course link with students that may be interested in pursuing this topic even further. Use the site as one of several sources for a class debate on animal rights or charge students to explore alternate points of view on animal issues, such as from the AKC or the meat industry. Then invite students to write a position paper with supporting facts.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Oxfam Education - Oxfam

Grades
6 to 12
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Oxfam's Teacher Resource site contains a wealth of information about global issues and human rights. There are lesson plans on fair trade, social justice, sustainability, and a unit...more
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Oxfam's Teacher Resource site contains a wealth of information about global issues and human rights. There are lesson plans on fair trade, social justice, sustainability, and a unit on global music. Given the nature of the issues explored, there is a special teacher's guide to teaching controversial issues. The link to "Mapping our World" takes you to a great interactive look at the world and the impact of maps on our view of the world. Use the Resource tab at the top and use the search function to find Mapping Our World, or enter keywords for your areas of interest.

In the Classroom

Geography teachers will love the "Mapping our World" interactive. Teachers who focus on current events will find much to explore. Oxfam as an organization clearly has a political point of view, but the depth of resources represented is remarkable. Enhance student learning by having students reflect about what they learned at this site using Telegra.ph, reviewed here. With Telegra.ph you just click on an icon to upload images from your computer, add a YouTube or Vimeo, or Twitter links. This blog creator requires no registration. Modify student learning by challenging students to create an interactive infographic using Easel.ly, reviewed here, to present their learning and understanding.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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