TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of Dec 10, 2023
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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Grades8 to 12
In the ClassroomBookmark and save these lessons to supplement your current American History curriculum. Each lesson includes links to primary source documents; use these resources to find materials not typically available in a broader curriculum. Engage students in the lesson activities and introductory essays using Pear Deck, reviewed here, to create interactive presentations that include guiding questions, videos, and formative assessment questions. Extend learning by asking individual students or groups to present their concluding analysis as a multimedia presentation with their peers. For example, Lesson 1 includes six questions for the concluding analysis activity. Assign a question to six different groups of students and ask them to share their responses through a video presentation created with Adobe Express Video Maker, reviewed here, or as a website created with Google Sites, reviewed here.
Grades8 to 12
In the ClassroomInclude these free resources and activities to use in your social studies classroom when teaching about the U.S. Constitution. Instead of asking students to take individual notes throughout your lessons, use Google documents to create shared notes. Ask students to highlight and annotate important information shared. Use Wakelet, reviewed here, to create "wakes" for students to organize information. Add websites, documents, videos, and more to any wake for students to access information in one site. As a final project, enhance student learning by challenging them to use a video explanation tool like Clipchamp, reviewed here to share the background and information learned about Supreme Court cases and decisions.
Grades5 to 12
In the ClassroomInclude this game with any lessons on the Bill of Rights. Challenge students to compete against each other and move up through the different levels of difficulty. Include the site with your other resources on a bookmarking site like Papaly, reviewed here. Papaly includes the option to add and share notes with bookmarks, add teaching notes for your future use or if sharing with students, ask them to add tips into the comments section. Upon completion of your unit, enhance learning by having students create animated videos using Powtoon, reviewed here, to share their understanding of the Bill of Rights.
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomInclude this site with any lessons on the Constitution. Share on your interactive whiteboard to help students understand the meaning behind each article and amendment. Take your research into the Constitution a step further and have students compile bookmarks containing videos and online articles to use for research. Wakelet, reviewed here, is a bookmarking tool that allows students to collaborate through annotations and highlighting of text. Extend student learning by having students or student groups create explainer videos to tell the history of the Constitution or explain articles or amendments. Modify classroom technology use by using a tool like Adobe Express Video Maker, reviewed here, to create animated short videos.
Grades8 to 12
In the ClassroomCivil Rights is about more than a movement that took place forty plus years ago. Americans have fought for their civil rights going back to the late 1700s. We are still fighting for them today. Review the timeline with a projector and the whole class. Extend student learning by suggesting to students that some of the articles have parallel situations going on today. Have them choose an article and research the situation from back in the 1960s and then compare it to a similar situation that is ongoing in the 21st century. Challenge students to redefine their technology learning by presenting their findings to classmates with an interactive, multimedia infographic or interactive poster using Canva Infographic Maker, reviewed here.
Grades2 to 8
In the ClassroomSeveral games require significant reading, so partner weaker and stronger readers if students work independently. Ypu could also provide a reading guide using Read Ahead, reviewed here an excellent tool for introducing any reading passage to struggling readers, special education students, and ENL/ESL learners. Create a link to specific games on classroom computers as a center to use on President's Day, Constitution Day, or any class day studying U.S. Government. If studying your state's laws, use an online tool such as the Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram, reviewed here, to compare and contrast differences between your state and Texas.
Grades5 to 12
This site includes advertising.
In the ClassroomShare this site with students as a resource for reading and viewing the Constitution. Use Read Ahead, reviewed here with these articles as a guided reading activity for younger students. Read Ahead is perfect for introducing any reading passage to struggling readers, special education students, and ENL/ESL learners. Along with Read Ahead you may want to use Wordsift, reviewed here to help students identify the most important words used in the text. Challenge students to develop a fake social media presence about one of the founding fathers using Fakebook, reviewed here. This is a great resource for Constitution Day!
Grades5 to 10
In the ClassroomThis site is a great way to review the amendments to the US Constitution. Using an interactive whiteboard or projector, complete one case as a whole group so students can see how the interactive should work. Use the provided handouts so students can take notes as they are working through the case. When it is time for students to work independently, make a shortcut to this site on classroom computers and use it as a center. Divide students into cooperative learning groups to explore the site. Afterward, have a discussion or have students journal using the provided discussion questions. This site does not have a save feature, so students must complete the entire activity to see if they've won. For students who need more of a challenge, assign them to Gideon v. Wainwright. Students have to examine two arguments which makes it more challenging.
Grades5 to 10
In the ClassroomThis site is great way to review the amendments of the US Constitution. Make a shortcut to this site on classroom computers and use it as a center. Divide students into cooperative learning groups to explore the site. Working in groups have a class competition to see who can win the most cases and achieve the most prestige points. Afterward, have a discussion about the process each group used to build their law firm. This site does not have a save feature so the teacher should set a duration for play. Built in help makes this site useful for students who might need some additional guidance. Use the final score printout to assign your students a grade.
To fully involve students in their "law firm," have them create a firm logo and "shingle" using an online graphics tool such as Supalogo, reviewed here. Print the logos for classroom decorations or have students upload them to law firm pages on on your class wiki.
Grades9 to 12
In the ClassroomStudents will not be bored when you turn them on to this site. The links can be put on a classroom webpage or blog. Use the primary resources section under Best of the Web to help students make real world connections. Students can use the photos provided on the site to create a PhotoStory or iMovie. The provided questions would be great to use for a classroom debate. To make learning more accessible, students can even download the guides to any handheld device that supports ebooks such as ipod touches or Kindles. Please note that some videos are from You Tube so they may be blocked by your school's filter.
Grades5 to 10
tag(s): bill of rights (26), branches of government (62), congress (39), constitution (84), courts (19), democracy (19), elections (77), game based learning (173), presidents (117), supreme court (27)
In the ClassroomAs you study the Constitution or U.S. government, have students participate in the activities, stopping to write blog entries as their legal character discussing the results they have achieved in court or in their role within other interactive simulations. Students can work individually or with a partner. Be sure to demonstrate the activities on an interactive whiteboard or projector so students understand how they work. Another option is to enhance student learning and modify classroom technology use by having students create a multimedia guide to one of the constitutional rights learned in the games. Use a tool such as Canva Infographic Maker, reviewed here, to make an interactive poster or infographic on each right. If your class is remote learning, try using Zoom, reviewed here, or another video conferencing tool, to demonstrate or introduce your class to iCivics and the individual activities.
GradesK to 12
tag(s): bill of rights (26)
In the ClassroomThis is a great site for both introducing and reinforcing topics about the Constitution. Teachers can print out crosswords puzzles for a "What Do I Know" activity. Students could find out which founding father they are in the interactive portion (under IQ Challenges) and create a multimedia project on the result. Challenge students to use Image Annotator, reviewed here. Image Annotator site allows you to add text and links to a picture. Challenge students to find a photo (legally permitted to be reproduced), and then narrate the photo. What a new twist to an oral report! Students could create a Photostory on their own version of the Story of Fourth of July. The possibilities are endless. For fun, teachers can present the Real or Fake Quiz on the projector or interactive whiteboard as whole class instruction or have discussions after each answer.
Grades8 to 12
In the ClassroomAlthough this site has links for integrating the material for the classroom, teachers could also create a blog site which students can post their thoughts about a milestone document for discussion. A bingo game could be created based on the 100 Milestone documents. Don't let the age group deter you from doing this -students of all ages love a good game of bingo - especially with a prize incentive!
Why not assign individual documents to cooperative learning groups to investigate, read, and create a multimedia presentation to share with the class. Have students create online posters on paper or do it together as a class using a tool such as Web DesignCap Poster Creator, reviewed here, or PicLits, reviewed here.