TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of Jun 18, 2017
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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Grades5 to 12
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In the ClassroomShare videos with students either with a projector, an interactive whiteboard, or use the link or embed codes on your class website to view at home. Have students view from home using VideoAnt, reviewed here, where students can stop the video and ask questions about the parts where they need clarification on the video! Have cooperative learning groups create podcasts sharing their insight into biases and racism along with suggestions on ways to address each problem. Use a site such as podOmatic, reviewed here. Share this site with your school's counselor for use with ongoing lessons in tolerance and diversity.
Grades2 to 12
In the ClassroomBenefit from the free lessons on this site for use when teaching the use of primary sources. Challenge younger students to demonstrate concepts learned by creating a presentation using slides, reviewed here, and older students to use a presentation tool from Lucidpress, reviewed here. The easy drag and drop features of Lucidpress allow you to personalize flyers, posters, presentations, and more. Ask students to incorporate primary sources and other research materials into an interactive timeline using Timeglider, reviewed here, as a visual look at historical events over a certain period.
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomHave your ESL/ELL students share their stories here (with permission from parents) when doing a biography writing unit. Have all students search for stories of immigrants whose ethnic background resembles their own. Have each student choose one story to read about and share a quick multimedia project with the class, such as a simple online posters using PicLits, reviewed here. Ask students who have a relative who is an immigrant to interview them, and then use a tool such as the 3 Circle Venn Diagram, reviewed here, to compare the experiences. This could be done using a story from the same country, or other countries. Use stories from this site as a writing prompt for a poem or digital story about an aspect of immigrant life, asking students to put themselves in the immigrant's shoes. For presentations of digital stories challenge students to use UtellStory, reviewed here. This tool allows narrating and adding text to a picture. For the advanced digital atudent and teacher challenge them to create their story as a game using Pencil Code Gym, reviewed here.
Grades8 to 12
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In the ClassroomMilitary History Now is an excellent addition to any history classroom. Share information from posts with students to add background information to any topic. Encourage students to browse the site on their own to find little-known facts to share with others. Have students create an annotated image including text boxes and related links using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here, to share information learned.
Grades4 to 12
In the ClassroomShare stories from this collection to provide a personal look at events from African-American history in the United States. Use stories as an example, and ask students to find additional artifacts from the National Museum and research to discover the story behind the item, or have students bring an item from their home to tell the story of its history. For either of these ideas, encourage students to create online books for sharing the stories using a tool such as Ourboox, reviewed here. Ask students to find local residents with knowledge of historical events to come talk to your class about the "behind the scenes" story, or set up a Skype call with an African-American leader. Use these stories for informational reading in your Language Arts classroom, and as a wonderful resource to use for covering the informational reading standards required with the CCSS.
Grades8 to 12
In the ClassroomNo study of modern democratic political systems is complete without an understanding of Magna Carta. On its anniversary, incorporate the interactive timeline into a discussion of the roots of the US Declaration of Independence or the post WW2 Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Compare and contrast the different ways the principles that underpin Magna Carta have been transformed into democratically elected governments across the world.
Grades9 to 12
In the ClassroomThe interactive map is well suited for use on an interactive whiteboard or projector. There are grade leveled lesson plans tied to Common Core Standards, as well as Featured events that are particularly important in telling the story of emancipation. Each event or document is categorized by theme, and has its own unique URL that can be shared with students as they do their own research. It's also possible to download a large spread sheet of the events as a list rather than as a map. If it's geographically relevant, consider using your own community as an example and research local events related to emancipation. Consider a discussion of how significant legal changes in the United States occur within the context of cultural change. Does legal change result in immediate cultural change? Why or why not? What happens when legal change is imposed on those who do not agree? Have students share their thoughts by creating an online collaborative bulletin board like Scrumblr, reviewed here (quick start - no membership required!).
Grades9 to 12
In the ClassroomThe 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, where students can ask questions about the parts they 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.
GradesK to 12
In the ClassroomEncourage students to select independent reading from this list as part of a citizenship unit, as a focus for Constitution Day, or in a civics/government class.
Grades5 to 10
In the ClassroomGettysburg exemplifies many aspects of the Civil War experience and of U.S. life during the 1860s. Use this resource as a whole class introduction to the Civil War or specifically to the Battle of Gettysburg. Extensive teacher materials include downloadable and customizable handouts for students to "get the basics" about the battle or extend their understanding through small group or individual projects on battle-related topics that interest them. Coordinate with your math teacher to reinforce concepts of proportion, percent, ratio, and graphing with real data about Gettysburg. Differentiate for your students by helping them select from more concrete or more open-ended "questions" included with each detail about the battle. You can make this a one-day "quick tour" or a week long journey. Find project ideas included in these questions. There is even a customizable project rubric in the teacher materials. Be sure to share this link on your class web page for curious students (and families) to explore on their own outside of class!
Excellent resource for researchArthur, TX, Grades: 0 - 12
Grades5 to 12
In the ClassroomUse the Rare Flags site as part of any American History unit to view a flag of the time period. Show the timeline on your interactive whiteboard or projector to display changes of the flag over our history. Choose a few different styles of flags and ask students to choose their favorite. For this create a quick poll (with no membership required) using SurveyRock, reviewed here. Challenge students to design their own flags for 13, 48, or 50 states. Celebrate Flag Day using this site!
GradesK to 6
In the ClassroomThese read-alouds are perfect during February celebrations of Presidents Day and Black History Month but could be used any time. If your social studies curriculum includes the CIvil War or you simply want to connect the interrelated topics of Lincoln, slavery, and the Civil War, this is a great place to start.
Grades3 to 12
In the ClassroomUse the interactive quiz on this site as a review tool before an assessment or to introduce a mini-unit on the flag. Introduce the site on the interactive whiteboard before allowing students to complete the quiz individually on classroom computers. Because of the amount of reading on the site, be sure to provide lower achieving readers with the vocabulary beforehand or a tool to help them look up complex words. Younger students would do better with partner readers or whole-class reading on an interactive whiteboard where they could highlight new words.
Grades5 to 12
In the ClassroomBegin your social studies class once or twice a week by sharing a Date That Matters on a projector or interactive whiteboard to foster broader understanding of the connections that form world history. Or use the links at the end as an extra credit or enrichment opportunity or for gifted students to investigate more. Focus class attention as everyone enters by projecting the date and starting sentence. Make this one a link on your teacher web page for students (and parents) to access outside of school. Substitutes will also appreciate this meaningful and engaging way to connect today with students' prior history knowledge for more than isolated factoid. It's a lesson ready to go!
This is a terrific site for daily writing and "Do Nows" for my ELA classes. In addition, the site can be used for Morning Meeting/Advisory.Patricia, NJ, Grades: 6 - 12