This is an awesome site brought to you by author Judy Waite. It is designed to immerse students in the writing experience through interactive experiences that introduce them to: plot, genre, character, and settings. In her own words, “I wanted to utilise all the benefits that image, sound and animation can bring, connect this with creative exercises that have been proven to enhance children’s creative writing skills, and package it with a work of fiction that would support all these aspects.” I guarantee it will appeal to your students’ imaginations and enhance their writing.
Museum Box is an intriguing resource for a different type of student product. The site describes itself this way, “it allows you to build up an argument or description of an event, person or historical period by placing items in a virtual box. You can display anything from a text file to a movie. You can also view the museum boxes submitted by other people and comment on the contents.” Unfortunately, the site does not work with iOS, but if you have internet access, and your students are doing research, this is a unique way for them to collect their supporting materials in one place.
This collection of videos on various topics is described by the author as “off the grid-for-little-kids videos and other smart stuff collected by Rion Nakaya and her three year old co-curator.” There are lots of fun, interesting, and educational productions to choose from in her archive, as well as on her main page. These videos would be great to use for research, as starting topics for writing, or just as “hooks” to get your students’ attention. The best thing is, although I guess we can never be certain of this, that most are probably appropriate for the classroom if they have been approved by a 3 year old.
This recently appeared in the Langwitches blog, and a fellow teacher shared it with me. It is similar to the Bloom’s Taxonomy Tech Pyramid I posted awhile ago, but this one sticks to iPad apps. Of course, there are new apps every week that would also be great to use at multiple levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy. This, however, is a great jumping off point, particularly for teachers who are just beginning to implement these devices in their classrooms.
I actually found the link to Beth Newingham’s blog post on another blog, KB Connected. When I clicked on the link, I was immediately impressed by the creative ideas and the higher order thinking skills each activity included. In addition, Beth Newingham provides photos of each activity and printables that are simple but attractive. It has links to her website showing several of the fiction genre lessons in action. This is the kind of classroom in which kids thrive!
This website is fun to visit for the graphics alone! It is sponsored by Raytheon, and designed specifically to engage middle school students in math and science. It offers games, scholarship information, and much more. Students can register to earn credits with their games, or they can play as guests. Even clicking on different links on this site produces interesting visuals that are sure to catch the attention of kids and grownups alike.
If you have not visited www.ted.com, or downloaded the app, please do so as soon as you can. The site is full of inspirational, though-provoking videos on a plethora of topics. Of course, it is always advisable to preview a video before you make it available to your students, but TED also includes interactive transcripts that you can skim for any objectionable content. Larry Ferlazzo had a great post recently on his blog that included various resources to accompany the TED talks, including a wiki in which teachers share their ideas for using it in the classroom.