Just because you have a degree and are an educator, it doesn’t mean that you are finished learning! A good teacher is continually tooling his-herself. Technology makes it easy to extend your learning by offering professional development on demand. Professional development will keep your teaching fresh, current, and will remind you of what it is like to learn something new. These are all great places to sharpen your toolkit!
1. PBS Learning Media – More than 1,000 free media resources from the best in public television (e.g. NOVA, Frontline, Design Squad, American Experience). Resources include video and audio segments, Flash interactives, images, documents, lesson plans for teachers, and student-oriented activities. Once you register, you can personalize the site using “My Folders” and “My Groups” to save your favorite resources into a folder.
2 BrainPop – Teachers can sign up to connect with other teachers, look up lesson ideas, etc. If you have the subscription, you can create classes and give assignments and quizzes (you can use their pre-made quizzes or make your own or a combination).
3. Classwork Timer – Easy way to track time spent on any activities, test etc.
4. Wordle – Free tool converts a block of text or list of words into a visual display “word cloud.” User can modify appearance by changing layout, font, and colors. Generates a hierarchical view of text pasted into the word box—i.e. words used most frequently are displayed most prominently.
5. Fakebook: You can create a fake “Facebook” page. Examples: you can create Fakebook pages for: characters from class novels for a character study, a person from history, an element, an animal (who would be their “friend”, what is their environment, etc.)
6. Blabberize: is a free photo editing tool that creates talking animations from a photo or other image in 30 seconds! There are also some that are pre-made. Students can create a short soeech for a historical character or narrate an event. To apply it to foreign languages, students can make a Blabberized photo and as it is speaking, they are doing a voice-over in the language they are learning.
7. Edutopia Instructional Modules– http://www.edutopia.org/instructional-modules
8. Today’sMeet – TodaysMeet is the premier backchannel chat platform for classroom teachers and learners. Students join fast, easy to start rooms with no sign up, and can immediately start powerful conversations that augment the traditional classroom.
9. Remind – Remind is a simple way for you to stay informed and up-to-date with what’s happening in your class. By joining your teacher’s class on Remind, you’re choosing to receive class messages via push notifications, SMS, or email. Don’t worry, your phone number will not be shared with the teacher or anyone else in the class.
10. Padlet – Padlet is pretty much an online bulletin board. Teachers, however, can use this tool in myriad ways. For example, Padlet student users can pose open-ended questions and elicit multiple student responses—ideal for posing document-based questions using primary sources. Users can also create their own “post-it” notes in response to a directed question. Teachers can also use Padlet as an online posterboard—a natural fit for group projects. Padlet can also function as a “bell-ringer” or “ticket-out-the-door” activity, as well as a homework assignment.
11. Socrative – Socrative lets teachers engage and assess their students with educational activities on tablets, laptops and smartphones. Through the use of real time questioning, instant result aggregation and visualization, teachers can gauge the whole class’ current level of understanding.
13. Atomic Learning
14. Skype in the Classroom: It is free to sign up. It can be used as a world wide collaboration tool. You can connect with classes all over the world. Find guest speakers. Take virtual tours. There are many classes that have already been created that you can join. NASA has a Skype in the classroom account that you can connect with.
15. Wordle– Free tool converts a block of text or list of words into a visual display “word cloud.” User can modify appearance by changing layout, font, and colors. Generates a hierarchical view of text pasted into the word box—i.e. words used most frequently are displayed most prominently.
1. Science NetLinks: Free lesson plans that integrate Internet resources. More than 250 activities organized alphabetically and by grade level. All are print-ready and include clear instructions, links, and follow-up ideas.
2. Biology Corner: Contains lesson plans, images, quizzes, worksheets, and graphic organizers.
3. CELLS Alive! Outstanding website with robust section on cell biology. Interactive models of plant and animal cells.
4. Cavalcade O’ Chemistry. For students, the Helpdesk offers worksheets, tutorials, vocabulary, and FAQs. For teachers, there are free labs and the Worksheet of the Month.
5. Middle School Science. Worthwhile lessons, labs, worksheets, and interactive Web-based activities for chemistry, physics, earth science, and life science.
6. ExploreLearning. Offers interactive simulations (Gizmos) in math and science. Gizmos are fun, easy to use, and flexible enough to support many different teaching styles and contexts. Gizmos are designed as supplemental curriculum materials. Exploration Guides provide a step-by-step activity for each Gizmo. Sign up for a 30-day free trial.
7. Physics Applets. More than 40 interactive applets for use in physics, astronomy, and environmental science. Ideal for projection for whole-class or large-group teaching. With a Smartboard, students can manipulate data and control the interactive examples with their hands on the screen. Can also be used with small groups or individual study.
8. PhysicsLessons.com. Includes News – daily news; Demos – animated; iPhysics – interactive lab simulations; X-Labs – complete lab experiments; Q-Physics – questions to check understanding; Quiz Zone – quizzes grade themselves automatically; Reference tools; Interactive Plasma Physics Education Experiment
9. Interactive Plasma Physics Education Experiment. Applets help illustrate principles of matter, electricity and magnetism, energy, and fusion.
10. Project Wild – The Project WILD K-12 Curriculum and Activity Guide focuses on wildlife and habitat. It is organized in topic units and is based on the Project WILD conceptual framework.