Technology in the Classroom
Below is the list of websites that I use on a regular basis to enrich and differentiate instruction and content. The services of the sites listed are free or of minimal costs.
Lessons and Reference Materials
All of Thinkfinity.org's 55,000 standards-based K-12 lesson plans, student materials, interactive tools and reference materials are reviewed by the nation's leading education organizations to ensure that content is accurate, up-to-date, unbiased and appropriate for students. At Thinkfinity.org, you'll find primary source materials, interactive student resources and grade-specific research lists to help you tailor materials to meet your needs.
This site contains free resources for educators support collaborative student-centered learning. Intel's 21st century teaching and learning resources help teachers play a critical role in facilitating learning activities and posing questions that take student thinking deeper.
Given the time, teachers could probably spend weeks on this site to review all it has to offer: lesson plans, professional development strategies, technology tools, organizers, and organizers, templates and printables, and student activities.
ARTSEDGE — the National Arts and Education Network — supports the placement of the arts at the center of the curriculum and advocates creative use of technology to enhance the K-12 educational experience. ARTSEDGE offers free, standards-based teaching materials for use in and out of the classroom, as well as professional development resources, student materials, and guidelines for arts-based instruction and assessment.
Annenberg Media uses media and telecommunications to advance excellent teaching in American schools. Annenberg Media's multimedia resources help teachers increase their expertise in their fields and assist them in improving their teaching methods. Many programs are also intended for students in the classroom and viewers at home. All Annenberg Media videos exemplify excellent teaching.
TeAch-nology - The Art and Science of Teaching with Technology® - represents a vision of teaching in a world driven by technology. This site provides services designed to support educators' in effectively incorporating technology in teaching and learning. As a web portal, TeAch-nology.com offers a wide variety of free resources intended to bring educators into the world of teaching with technology. It provides links to valuable and useful information relative to current and best practices in the field of education. A large variety of free classroom materials and support tools are also available.
BrainPOP is an educational program, providing content spanning 7 main subjects including: Science, Math, English, Social Studies, Health, Arts and Music, and Technology. BrainPOP currently features more than 600 animated movies. Each movie is supported by activities such as a quiz, comic strip, experiment and other printable worksheets, all of which speak to kids in a language and voice that they can understand. Although many of BrainPOP's movies are appropriate for all ages, the main focus grades for BrainPOP are 3-12. For content aimed at grades K-3, BrainPop Jr. was developed.
MIT is committed to advancing education and discovery through knowledge open to everyone. OCW shares free lecture notes, exams, and other resources from more than 1800 courses spanning MIT's entire curriculum.
Authoring and Programming Tools for Kids
Scratch is a new programming language that makes it easy to create your own interactive stories, animations, games, music, and art -- and share your creations on the web. Scratch is designed to help young people (ages 8 and up) develop 21st century learning skills. As they create Scratch projects, young people learn important mathematical and computational ideas, while also gaining a deeper understanding of the process of design.
Alice is an innovative 3D programming environment that makes it easy to create an animation for telling a story, playing an interactive game, or a video to share on the web. Alice is a teaching tool for introductory computing. It uses 3D graphics and a drag-and-drop interface to facilitate a more engaging, less frustrating first programming experience.
Squeak is a "media authoring tool"-- software that you can download to your computer and then use to create your own media or share and play with others.
Online Publishing Tools
This clever WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) website building tool for non-techies offers a one-step process for adding content. This is a Weebly website,
This is a web-based collaborative network that is simple, powerful and safe. Specifically designed for K-12 educators and students, Ed.VoiceThread enables rich collaboration around multimedia in a secure environment. More like a pencil than a software platform, Ed.VoiceThread is a space for creating digital stories and documentaries, practicing language skills, exploring geography and culture, solving math problems, collaborating with other students, or simply finding and honing student voices.
Think.com connects schools, teachers, and students from around the world to collaborate on projects, share experiences, and build knowledge together. Teachers and students build their own webpages to share learning experiences. Simple publishing tools allow members to easily create content and engage one another in thoughtful online discussions. My students love this site. It is the technology tool I use most in my classroom. Visit my Parent Page (the only thin.com page accessible to the public).
iEARN (International Education and Resource Network) is a non-profit organization made up of over 20,000 schools and youth organizations in more than 115 countries. iEARN empowers teachers and young people to work together online using the Internet and other new communications technologies. Over 1,000,000 students each day are engaged in collaborative project work worldwide.
The mission of MY HERO web site is to enlighten and inspire people of all ages with an ever-growing internet archive of hero stories from around the world. The MY HERO web site hosts thousands of stories of remarkable individuals written by children and adults alike. These stories serve to remind us that we all have the potential to overcome great obstacles and achieve our dreams by following in the footsteps of our heroes.
Curriculum Connections is a collection of original lesson plans and resources that help K-12 educators integrate multicultural, anti-bias, and social justice themes into their curricula. Each edition is organized around a particular topic or theme, and a new edition is published three to four times per school year. Themes include: Constitutional Issues, Hate and Extremism, Name-Calling, Anti-Semitism, Native American and Indigenous People, People with Disabilities, Racism, and Gender Issues.
NASA is dedicated to supporting educators in the disciplines of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (also referred to as STEM). NASA provides formal and informal educators unique resources and development opportunities to strengthen the overall teaching of STEM subjects. Using the excitement that NASA's missions inspire, NASA works with educators to capture the imagination of students, encouraging them to become the scientists and engineers.
Online since 1993, the Exploratorium was one of the first science museums to build a site on the World Wide Web. Our site now contains over 18 thousand Web pages exploring hundreds of different topics. Some current topics include sports science, global warming, robots, space weather, solar eciipse.
Google's satellite imagery-based mapping product, represents, in essence, the whole world on a student's computer. It enables users to "fly" from space to street level to find geographic information and explore places around the world. Google Earth is more like a video game than a search engine – it's basically a 3D model of the entire planet that lets you grab, spin and zoom down into any place on Earth. Different versions offer tools for measuring, drawing, saving, printing, and GPS device support
ReadWriteThink is a partnership between the International Reading Association (IRA), the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE), and the Verizon Foundation. NCTE and IRA are working together to provide educators and students with access to the highest quality practices and resources in reading and language arts instruction through free, Internet-based content. The site includes lessons, web tools, and literacy engagement activities.
At the core of FreshBrain is an open and free web site freshbrain.org that provides teens with the opportunity to explore, engage, and create through activities and projects. FreshBrain takes advantage of the latest technologies, such as web conferencing and social networking, to provide a very progressive environment where teens can complete activities and work together on projects.
Guys Read's mission is to motivate boys to read by connecting them with materials they will want to read, in ways they like to read. GUYS READ is a chance to call attention to boys’ literacy (1) byexpanding our definition of reading to Include boy-friendly nonfiction, humor, comics, graphic novels, action- adventure, magazines, websites, and newspapers in school reading, and (2) by giving boys choice by letting them choose texts they will enjoy and letting them choose from a new, wider range of reading.
Notefish is a Web service that allows you to take notes from portions of Web pages by copying and pasting them into one convenient online page. You can organize the notes by moving them around, changing their colors and breaking them down into sections - all from your Web browser. Save your page in Notefish for future reference, print it out or share with others who would also benefit from your research.
ARKive Education is a free-to-use, multi-media resource bank for teachers and other educators. Making use of the stunning imagery, ARKive Education provides downloadable, ready to use modules on a wide range of curriculum topics, suitable for geography, biology, environmental education and citizenship lessons. ARKive (www.arkive.org) is the world's centralised library of films and photographs of the world's endangered species - freely accessible to all online for private research and internal educational purposes.
Through games, lesson plans, maps, and more, National Geographic's Xpeditions helps integrate the U.S. geography standards into learning—both at home and in the classroom.
Digital Storytelling revolves around the idea of combining the longstanding art of telling stories with any of a variety of available multimedia tools, including graphics, audio, video animation, and Web publishing. Educators at all levels can use Digital Storytelling in many ways, from introducing new material to helping students learn to conduct research, synthesize large amounts of content and gain expertise in the use of digital communication and authoring tools. It also can help students organize these ideas as they learn to create stories for an audience, and present their ideas and knowledge in an individual and meaningful way.
DimensionM™is an immersive video game world that engages students in the instruction and learning of mathematics. Pre-algebra and algebra objectives are covered through a series of missions that bring math into a world that today's students understand. Research with these programs demonstrates how well they align with the way today's students learn and how naturally immersed students become in their learning. The result: increase in student motivation, increase in time on task, and the ability to apply their learning in real world situations that have meaning for your student. There is a user fee for this service.
EcoKids is a free, environmental education program that offers curriculum-linked materials and activities. It is an interactive environmental web site for children, their families, and educators. It offers topical information about the environment through interactive, fun, educational games and activities that utilize participants' willingness to learn. Children are encouraged to form their own opinions, make decisions, get involved and understand the impact their own actions have on the environment. Designed to inspire children to become life-long environmental stewards, EcoKids is an invaluable resource for educators, youth group leaders and parents.
The U.S. Geological Survey provides scientific information intended to help educate the public about natural resources, natural hazards, geospatial data, and issues that affect our quality of life. Discover selected online resources, including lessons, data, maps, and more, to support teaching, learning, education (K-12), and university-level inquiry and research.
Want to make exemplary rubrics in a short amount of time? Try RubiStar out! Registered users can save and edit rubrics online. You can access them from home, school, or on the road. Registration and use of this tool is free.
Assistive Technology can offer powerful tools to students with learning disabilities by providing remedial or compensatory support in the classroom and for independent learning. This site includes an overview of various hardware, software and low tech tools for students and teachers with a focus on literacy and a mention of available math tools. While there is an emphasis on middle and high school, many of the tools described are useful for elementary school students.
• Sign up for a free education blog in seconds• Use it to transform your teaching or talk to other teachers• Powered by WordPress, the best blogging tool on the web• Safe, secure, supported and free of any advertising• Embed video, create podcasts and customize your space
Over 1,900 carefully selected and annotated resources will propel you into the center of telecommunications action in education on the Web. Like an IMC in the real world, you will find...• tools for planning, using and managing your own environment,• a solid foundation for supporting standards and assessment practices,• classroom projects, lessons, units, field trips, extended studies, international databases in almost any subject and across subjects,• references and contests for students,• multimedia creation and samples,
This award-winning eduand parents. netTrekker d.i. connects you and your students to more than 180,000 hand-selected, educational search engine brings the best of the web to K-12 students, teachers, librarians, educator-approved sites - organized by readability level and aligned with your state standards, providing resources ideal for every student's learning needs with safe, reliable results..
Odyssey of the Mind is an international educational program that provides creative problem-solving opportunities for students from kindergarten through college. Kids apply their creativity to solve problems that range from building mechanical devices to presenting their own interpretation of literary classics. They then bring their solutions to competition on the local, state, and World level.
ThinkQuest inspires students to think, connect, create, and share. Students work in teams to build innovative and educational websites to share with the world. Along the way, they learn research, writing, teamwork, and technology skills and compete for exciting prizes.
The International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) is the trusted source for professional development, knowledge generation, advocacy, and leadership for innovation. A nonprofit membership organization, ISTE provides leadership and service to improve teaching, learning, and school leadership by advancing the effective use of technology in PK–12 and teacher education. Home of the National Educational Technology Standards (NETS), the Center for Applied Research in Educational Technology (CARET), and the National Educational Computing Conference (NECC), ISTE represents more than 85,000 professionals worldwide. We support our members with information, networking opportunities, and guidance as they face the challenge of transforming education.
Although there's no single recipe for creating a great school, our experience has shown that the most successful schools share many common traits. Here, you'll be able to learn more about these key elements and discover how specific schools have put theory into practice. You'll also find a wealth of resources to assist you in your efforts to transform schools.The articles and video segments allow people to actually "see" best practices in action. Our content is used in meetings, presentations, and classes, in crafting grant proposals, for curriculum and instruction ideas, and more.
ASCD, a community of educators, advocating sound policies and sharing best practices to achieve the success of each learner. ASCD addresses all aspects of effective teaching and learning—such as professional development, educational leadership, and capacity building. ASCD offers broad, multiple perspectives—across all education professions—in reporting key policies and practices. Because we represent all educators, we are able to focus solely on professional practice within the context of "Is it good for the children?" rather than what is reflective of a specific educator role. In short, ASCD reflects the conscience and content of education.
A key component of the Partnership’s framework for 21st century teaching and learning focuses the skills students should master. Route 21, a one-stop-shop for 21st century skills-related information, resources and community tools.
The IRIS Center is a national center that aims to provide high-quality resources for college and university faculty and professional development providers about students with disabilities. IRIS seeks to obtain this goal by providing free, online, interactive training enhancements that translate research about the education of students with disabilities into practice.
The University of Connecticut is home to the Neag Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development which comprises of many unique teaching, research, and service components. This site includes links for research on Gifted Education, the Schoolwide Enrichment Model, the summer professional development Confratute, and specialized math and reading programs.
Online Brain Stretchers
The object of the game is to identify a 'Set' of three cards from 12 cards.. Each card has a variation of the following four features: (A) Color: Each card is red, green, or purple, (B) Symbol: Each card contains ovals, squiggles, or diamonds. (C) Number: Each card has one, two, or three symbols, (D) Shading: Each card is solid, open, or striped. A 'Set' consists of three cards in which each feature is EITHER the same on each card OR is different on each card. That is to say, any feature in the 'Set' of three cards is either common to all three cards or is different on each card.
Use your mouse to drop discs into the grid. Make discs disappear by having their number match the size of their row or column.
When asked what inspired them to become inventors, many adults tell stories about playing as children. Among their most frequently cited childhood play experiences are: mechanical tinkering, fiddling with construction toys, reflecting about nature, and drawing or engaging in visual modeling. There is something about the skills fostered by play that inventors value and keep using as part of their working lives. Games include Tinker Ball (my personal favorite), Cloud Dreamers, Word Play, and Puzzle Blocks