TeachersFirst - Featured Sites: Week of Jul 25, 2021

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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NASA Image and Video Library - NASA

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K to 12
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Do you need "out of this world" images? NASA provides images, video, and audio for non-commercial use, free. Browse through the newest uploads or most popular items to get an ...more
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Do you need "out of this world" images? NASA provides images, video, and audio for non-commercial use, free. Browse through the newest uploads or most popular items to get an idea of included items. If looking for specific topics, use the search bar to locate material by keyword, then use the filters to narrow down by the type of content desired. All items include a link to download to your computer along with links to share by URL or with social media. Be sure to check out the Media Usage guidelines for complete details on the usage of the site's content.

tag(s): images (254), planets (114), space (202), stars (65), video (244)

In the Classroom

Include this site with your other bookmarks for images and space-related content. Use Symbaloo, reviewed here, to share all of your space bookmarks in one easy to find location. This NASA site is an excellent resource for finding images to use with creative writing prompts; display an interesting image from the site for student storytelling lessons. Exchange paper and pen writing journals, and share their writing using Edublog, reviewed here. As students learn about space topics, ask them to find an image on this site then use ThingLink, reviewed here, to enhance their learning by annotating the image with text, video, and web links to additional information. Extend student learning by having students create a video presentation about space using a video creation tool like Typito, reviewed here. Typito includes templates and additional tools to create professional-looking videos or use your own images and video.

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ESASky - European Space Agency

Grades
6 to 12
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Prepare to be amazed by the incredible features found on this interactive map of the Milky Way created with images taken during space missions. Take full advantage of the site ...more
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Prepare to be amazed by the incredible features found on this interactive map of the Milky Way created with images taken during space missions. Take full advantage of the site by viewing the tutorial video explanations (at the top far right menu) of the many features included. View different portions of the interactive by choosing the random option or select from the included target list to see targets by class such as galaxies or nebulae. Additional options allow you to zoom in and out when viewing images. The video tutorials reside on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable.

tag(s): moon (69), planets (114), space (202), stars (65)

In the Classroom

If you teach astronomy be sure to bookmark this site for easy reference at any time. Make it easy for students to find bookmarked sites like this by creating a Padlet, reviewed here, with all of your shared resources. Create columns in your Padlet to organize resources by type or topic. For example, create columns for interactives like this site, video explainers, and informative websites. Use the share button included on this site to share specific regions or resources with students for use in class or research. As students learn about different star formations, have them modify their technology use and enhance their learning as they create infographics using Canva Infographic Maker, reviewed here, to describe and share facts about their research. As a final project, have students redefine their technology use and extend their learning by including their infographic in a multimedia presentation as an alternative to a typical research paper. Adobe Spark for Education, reviewed here, offers tools for creating web pages that include videos, photos, and slide presentations.

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Space School Musical - Jet Propulsion Laboratory California Institute of Technology

Grades
3 to 12
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Introduce students to planets, the moon, and more through this "hip-hopera" correlated to science standards. The materials are designed to be used as a whole production, or as individual...more
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Introduce students to planets, the moon, and more through this "hip-hopera" correlated to science standards. The materials are designed to be used as a whole production, or as individual stand-alone parts. Each section includes a video download and transcript. Total runtime of the videos is 30 minutes. If your school blocks YouTube, the videos may not be viewable.

tag(s): moon (69), planets (114), readers theater (10), space (202), STEM (213)

In the Classroom

Appeal to your students' love of music and drama to teach key space concepts with this site. Instead of just watching the videos, enhance learning using edpuzzle, reviewed here. Use edpuzzle to upload the video then add questions to help student comprehension or as a starter for further exploration. Have students interested in music and theater create their own production of Space School Musical (or their original space production). Allow students who aren't interested in being featured in the production to create scenery, be authors and add additional information, or help videotape and share the finished project. Enhance learning by having other students create video explainers using a video creation tool like Typito, reviewed here. Use these explainers as part of your ongoing assessment of student learning in place of a written report.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Solar System Exploration - NASA

Grades
3 to 12
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Take a journey deep into the solar system with this engaging site from the Planetary Science Communications team at NASA. Choose a destination within the solar system to explore facts,...more
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Take a journey deep into the solar system with this engaging site from the Planetary Science Communications team at NASA. Choose a destination within the solar system to explore facts, information, and images or scroll down the home page to read about the latest news about the solar system. Dig deeper into the site to learn about careers in space, space missions, and much more. Some portions of the site also feature a downloadable app for 3D exploration of planets, moons, asteroids, and more. Stay up to date with the monthly skywatching tips.

tag(s): explorers (59), moon (69), planets (114), solar system (101), sun (61)

In the Classroom

Use this site to offer students the opportunity to explore our solar system through interactives, facts, and informative articles. Introduce the site on your interactive whiteboard then allow students to explore on their own. Because the site is dense with content, you might want to provide students specific areas and content for exploration. As students learn about different pieces of the solar system, ask them to share information using Pinup, reviewed here, a labeling tool; have students use an image and create notes about information learned. For example, find a free image to use of the sun and add notes with interesting facts, including distance from the earth, the temperature on the sun, and more. Use Pinup to create an image for each planet either together as a class, or have students create their own. Use the information learned to create a lively learning game using Baamboozle, reviewed here. Baamboozle is a quick and easy two-team quiz creation game that keeps track of the score as you play. Have older students create their own quiz game for classmates to play based on the material they learned from this site and others. Enhance student learning a step further and modify classroom technology use by asking them to create books about the solar system using Book Creator (Chrome and app), reviewed here. Book Creator includes features for students to easily create digital books using their own text, videos, and images. Use BookCreator for a variety of assignments in any classroom that is integrating technology as an enhancement, modification, or transformation. Be sure to include your students' books on your class website as part of your digital library for students and parents!

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Women with Altitude - NetFlights

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6 to 12
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Discover the stories of women achieving aviation firsts through this interactive timeline. The timeline begins with the first women to receive a pilot's license, Hilda Hewlett, Harriet...more
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Discover the stories of women achieving aviation firsts through this interactive timeline. The timeline begins with the first women to receive a pilot's license, Hilda Hewlett, Harriet Quimby, and Raymonde De Laroche in 1910 and continues through present time. Each entry shares an image and short presentation on the individual woman's accomplishment in aviation.

tag(s): aviation (31), biographies (84), flight (28), pioneers (8), women (97)

In the Classroom

Share this timeline when studying pioneers in different fields or include in Women's History Month lessons. Each entry provides a short introduction to the featured woman. Challenge students to use the entry as a starting point to research the aviator more fully. Have students save their resources using a bookmarking tool like SearchTeam, reviewed here, and include a link to their resources with the final project. SearchTeam allows you to collaborate and add notes to bookmarks making this a useful tool for use with group projects. Replace paper and pen timelines by asking students to create their own timelines exploring the life of a famous pioneer using History in Motion, reviewed here.

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Universe and Space - Science Resources - TeachersFirst

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K to 12
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Find engaging tools related to the universe and space in this curated list. Read the descriptions to find out whether a site sounds right for what you want to know. ...more
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Find engaging tools related to the universe and space in this curated list. Read the descriptions to find out whether a site sounds right for what you want to know. There are some sites specifically for elementary grades, although most are for secondary. Read through the content sites and find lesson ideas and interactives. If you want to explore even more information, peruse the additional tagged list of resources related to space.

tag(s): space (202)

In the Classroom

If you are teaching about the universe and space, be sure to bookmark (or save) this collection. There are resources here for all grades, plus many extra tools on the tagged list. Share sites on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Provide the link on your class website for students to access both in and out of class.

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Above the Clouds - Plus 360 Degrees

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6 to 12
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Above the Clouds is an interactive experience celebrating the Earth. Follow the adventure set to text written by Carl Sagan in his book Pale Blue Dot. While watching this interactive,...more
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Above the Clouds is an interactive experience celebrating the Earth. Follow the adventure set to text written by Carl Sagan in his book Pale Blue Dot. While watching this interactive, move your mouse to explore different views. Use icons at the bottom of the screen to toggle sound and captions on or off.

tag(s): conservation (84), earth (176), earth day (61), environment (220), planets (114)

In the Classroom

This site is perfect for use on an interactive whiteboard. Use as a starting point for a unit on planets, the universe, or conservation. Be sure to include a link on your class website for students to explore at home. Introduce this site when you assign individual or group projects about environmental or global issues. Enhance learning and modify technology use by having students create a simple infographic sharing their findings for their projects using Venngage, reviewed here.

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Future: Space Race - How Big is Our Own Solar System? - BBC

Grades
5 to 12
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Journey to the farthest regions of space with this interactive from BBC. Scroll down to move the rocket from Earth's closest cloud layer and continue to the outer edges of ...more
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Journey to the farthest regions of space with this interactive from BBC. Scroll down to move the rocket from Earth's closest cloud layer and continue to the outer edges of our solar system 46 billion light- years away. Notes at the bottom of the page change to tell the distance in kilometers, travel time at warp 1 speed, and miles represented per pixel.

tag(s): planets (114), rockets (11), solar system (101), space (202)

In the Classroom

Use this interactive as an anticipatory set or "activator" to introduce a unit or lesson on a projector or interactive whiteboard about our solar system. Make a shortcut to this site on classroom computers and use it as a center. This interactive is excellent for enrichment. Include it on your class web page for students to access both in and out of class. Enhance learning and modify classroom technology use by having students create an infographic sharing their findings using Venngage, reviewed here.

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CurriConnects Book List - Flight and Things that Fly - TeachersFirst

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K to 12
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Read about the many ways that people have used flying machines and the many creatures that fly with books from this leveled booklist. Learn how things fly--either by nature or ...more
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Read about the many ways that people have used flying machines and the many creatures that fly with books from this leveled booklist. Learn how things fly--either by nature or human engineering! Read about birds, aircraft, and the people who have pioneered human flight. The Wright Brothers were not the only ones who took to the sky! How does flight work? Some fiction, and some non-fiction, all these books will inspire young aviators, animal scientists, designers, and engineers. This list is particularly rich in offerings for elementary and middle school, with some offerings for high school level readers, as well.

tag(s): aeronautics (10), animals (260), aviation (31), book lists (121), flight (28), STEM (213), wright brothers (18)

In the Classroom

Have students choose a book they can connect to concepts you are studying in science class or have them choose a book of interest and generate a list of questions they would like to investigate further. Share this list with students during your study of the physics of flight and aerodynamics. Include it during study of sophisticated engineering design or of basic concepts such as gravity and air flow. As you study animal adaptations and the differences among species, look closely at how birds fly and how man-made flying machines mimic some of their capabilities. The non-fiction selections offer possible informational texts to practice Common Core science literacy skills.

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Amelia Earhart - The Official Website - Family of Amelia Earhart

Grades
6 to 12
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The Official website of Amelia Earhart is an informational website intended to honor the life, the legend, and the career of Amelia Earhart. It contains a vast amount of information...more
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The Official website of Amelia Earhart is an informational website intended to honor the life, the legend, and the career of Amelia Earhart. It contains a vast amount of information about her life and career. The most extensive part of the site is the "Biography." Other portions contain her achievements, quotes, photos, videos, and fast facts. Another interesting portion of the site is the News section which has links to recent stories and news articles about Amelia Earhart. Scroll down the "Home" page to preview the movie Amelia, you may want to share this with your class - or not. Preview beforehand.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): aviation (31), careers (132), famous people (20), flight (28), women (97)

In the Classroom

Share this site with students when researching famous Americans, women, flight, or careers. Enhance learning by having students use a mapping tool such as Google Earth, reviewed here, to create an audio (and visual) tour of Amelia Earhart's journeys. Her story could also offer a powerful writing prompt for an essay about people who take on formidable challenges/adventures. Substitute a blog tool such as Edublog, reviewed here, for paper and pen.

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The Wilbur and Orville Wright Papers - Library of Congress

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6 to 12
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The Library of Congress offers this collection of photographs, letters, and other documents related to the lives of aviation pioneers Wilbur and Orville Wright. Images and documents...more
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The Library of Congress offers this collection of photographs, letters, and other documents related to the lives of aviation pioneers Wilbur and Orville Wright. Images and documents in the archive provide primary sources on the history of flight. The archive is easy to navigate and includes a timeline of the brothers' lives, a family tree hyperlinked to relevant documents, and the expected photographs of Wilbur and Orville and their flying machines. Of special interest to many would be the story of the brothers' early failed enterprises, demonstrating that even famous inventors fail before finding success, as well as the many letters between the Wrights and other well known people of the time such as Amelia Earhart and Charles Lindbergh.

tag(s): aviation (31), flight (28), inventors and inventions (68), wright brothers (18)

In the Classroom

Students doing research on the Wright brothers will find this site invaluable. Have students work in cooperative learning groups and research a specific topic found at this site. Exchange paper and pen notes by having students to take notes with an online tool like Simplenote, reviewed here. Have them share the info they learned with their small group. Tell students to be sure to save the URL to share their notes and questions. Simplenote allows you to access and update across all devices. Enhance learning by challenging students to modify their technology use and create a multimedia presentation using a tool such as Zeemaps, reviewed here. Zeemaps allows students to create audio recordings AND choose a location (on a map) where the story takes place. Alternatively, students could use Adobe Spark for Education, reviewed here, to enhance their learning and transform technology use by creating an interactive poster for their presentation.

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How Things Fly - Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum

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4 to 12
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How Things Fly offers a self guided, interactive resource to understand how space and air flight happen. This site delivers information clearly and effectively about lift, drag, thrust,...more
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How Things Fly offers a self guided, interactive resource to understand how space and air flight happen. This site delivers information clearly and effectively about lift, drag, thrust, and weight. It is very easy to navigate and there is a ton of information to gained! This answers a lot of questions that students tend to ask when talking about space and some physics.

tag(s): aircraft (18), aviation (31), flight (28), space (202)

In the Classroom

Choose a type of flight to have students study and assign that part of the website as a web search with a question sheet. Or have students create their own journey by picking a learning path using Symbaloo Learning Paths, reviewed here, and then enhance learning by having students explain what they learn as they go through the activity in writing. Before writing, have students organize their thoughts about what they learn with a tool such as bubbl.us, reviewed here.

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Black Wings: African American Pioneer Aviators - Smithsonian- National Air and Space Museum

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5 to 12
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Inspire future aviators or encourage students to pursue their dreams with this site that traces African American aviators through the years. There are many images and short passages...more
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Inspire future aviators or encourage students to pursue their dreams with this site that traces African American aviators through the years. There are many images and short passages of text. The reading levels are not for younger students. Black Wings permits students to download and use images in their reports, as long as they are classroom projects, either printed or electronic, such as in PowerPoint or other tech tool. Images may not be published on web pages or burned to CD. Be sure to visit the What's New section for featured interviews with aviators. What a terrific and interesting primary source!

tag(s): africa (135), african american (91), black history (79)

In the Classroom

Use this one as part of reading comprehension practice and find that your students are actually interested in what they read. Have students create projects about their favorite aviator or aircraft on a poster using Genially, reviewed here, or PowerPoint Online, reviewed here.

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U.S. Air Force Museum - U.S. Air Force

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4 to 12
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Here's a site with dozens of images and histories of military and civilian aircraft. The site also includes histories of many aircraft used by U.S. presidents. This site could assist...more
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Here's a site with dozens of images and histories of military and civilian aircraft. The site also includes histories of many aircraft used by U.S. presidents. This site could assist with research on aviation history or related topics.

tag(s): air (110), aircraft (18), aviation (31), flight (28)

In the Classroom

Click on "explore museum exhibits" from the right menu, then scroll down the page and choose from a list of exhibit areas for photos of each plane and weapon featured in the museum. Aerospace teachers can use this site for example photos of planes being studied in class, while history teachers can use those same photos in units concerning the evolution of transportation or warfare. This site truly is an interdisciplinary webpage, and can be used to supplement lectures in many classrooms. After introducing this site, allow student pairs, groups, or individuals to explore and find an area of interest. Then extend student learning by asking them to do some research to see what more they can learn about their area of interest and have them create a Thinglink, reviewed here. With Thinglink students can add text, voice, videos, and hyperlinks to explain what they learned.

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