Web Site Treasures
Imagine being ship wrecked on a deserted barren island with 30 students.
You find an old barracks completely decked out with beds, cooking
paraphernalia, and food. It will be a few days before you are rescued.
The waters are shark invested so no swimming is allowed. With nothing
else to do, your students begin searching for buried treasure. They
are convinced a pirate ship must have landed on this island. After
digging in several locations, a large watertight crate is discovered.
Aha! The treasure chest has been found. Inside are 31 laptop computers
(batteries fully charged) with wireless connectivity, 5 PDAs with
probes, and a digital camera. You dig out a copy of the current issue
of MultiMedia Schools magazine from your knapsack and turn to the
CyberBee column. With a smile on your face you know how to turn these
treasures into golden learning experiences. Even if you are not on
a desert island, you can help your students discover a treasure trove
of information by visiting these Websites.
Over 7,500 artists are represented with links to more than 100,00
works. You can search artists by name, artworks by title, or art
museums by name/place. A search for Winslow Homer returned the
date of the artist, a short quote, over three dozens links directly
to his paintings in museums, related Websites, and articles about
him. In addition, there is a today in art history feature that
is loaded with information.
Crayola Art Education
Binny and Smith have produced an excellent resource for art teachers.
There are directions for creating with many different types of art
media. In addition, there is a history of crayons and contests that
students can enter.
Mr. Picasso Head
Create a Picasso painting using shapes, paints, lines, and design.
This interactive painting tool allows the artist to create and then
post in the Picasso gallery with other Picasso-like artists. You
may also print a paper copy of your work.
Pop-up and Moveable Books
The University of North Texas has prepared a virtual tour of pop-up
books from the nineteenth century to present. There are many wonderful
illustrations, including a few animations that give you an idea of
how the movements would appear in the book. This is a must visit
site if you are planning any lessons about pop-up books.
Reading is Fundamental
The focus of
Reading is Fundamental (RIF) is to develop children’s
and family literacy programs. There are several activities
geared toward elementary grades such as making a butterfly garden, price problems, and calendars. Students can also downliad ebooks, apps, and more. In addition, there are lists of books for reading.
No matter whether you are 4 or 104, you will be fascinated with
this creative environment. It's a place for kids to compose music
and play with musical instrumentation. In addition there are music
games and puzzles. Turn up the volume and have fun.
New York Philharmonic Kidzone
Make your own
instrument, meet musicians, play Mozart's Minuet game, and learn
about composers at this kid friendly site.
When you enter
the page, you find yourself in a balcony seat listening to the orchestra
warm up. From here you can choose all sorts of areas to explore from
the instrument storage room to the composer’s gallery. Book
your tickets now for a visit to a great site.
Fun Brain is one of the most popular sites for elementary teachers
and students. There are games, quizzes, and standards guides. Some
of the games include Change Maker, Fresh Baked Fractions, and Guess
Pattern Blocks was inspired by the No Matter What Shape Your Fractions
are In site developed by Cynthia Lanius. In this Java program four
different pattern blocks or manipulatives can be dragged onto a grid
and moved around. The purpose of this activity is to familiarize
students with different shapes, their relations, and their properties.
Easy to understand instructions are provided along with links to
Many activities are provided for physical education teachers to
use in their daily instruction, including interdisciplinary lessons.
A few of the other topics covered are adapted physical education,
assessment ideas, and positive learning climates. Be sure to read
the Kids Quote of the Day, it will make you smile.
a national, non-profit advocacy organization for promoting quality,
daily physical education programs for America's
free community action kit is available for the price of postage.
The P.E.4LIFE: Community Action Kit includes PowerPoint® presentations,
handouts, sample letters, and a dynamic seven-minute video that highlights
the benefits of quality physical education.
and games for flyers, newsletters, or the classroom. Choose from
11 different types of puzzles with step-by-step instructions for
adding content. Save time by using the ready-made words lists from
Discovery Channel or cut and paste your own. You can print or save
your puzzle online once you have signed up for a free account.
Puzzlemaker is easy to use for teachers and students.
Solve jigsaw puzzles online. Select a level of difficulty from 6
pieces to 247 pieces for each puzzle. Upload photos and create your
own jigsaw puzzles. Share puzzles with friends and receive the puzzle
of the day via email.
The name says it all. This useful tool converts and calculates weights,
measures, and units. There are currently two versions MegaConverter
Original and MegaConverter2. Both have an interactive conversion
dial that is a snap to use.
Features include definitions, pronunciations, translations, explanations,
word of the day, and activities for increasing vocabulary. There
is a specialty glossary with over fifty categories of subjects. Translate
foreign languages or visit the multilingual library. Enter the game
room and find crossword puzzles, encryptions, fill-in puzzles, word
jingles, and semantic scramblers. Write you name in ten different
languages. The educational services section offers essays from leading
linguists about word histories. This is and excellent reference site
to add to your bookmarks.
Wacky Patent of the Month
Ever heard of an eye protector for chickens, audible toothbrush,
or self-waiting table? The Wacky Patent of the Month is devoted
to recognizing selected inventors and their remarkable and unconventional
patented inventions. An archive of previous months is available.
A highly interactive
site that is lots of fun. Content is based on the needs of its
users and the National Science Education
At present, BrainPOP.com has over 80 original animated movies
covering Health, Science, and Technology topics. BrainPop
School is subscription based.. See the site for details.
guides are presented for observing and identifying plants and animals
sponsered by the National Wildlife Federation.
New Deal Network
Study the Great Depression using the New Deal Network as an educational
guide. Documents, photos, the arts, letters, and created lesson plans
for teachers are included in this extensive site sponsored by the
Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt Institute and the Institute for Learning
Technologies at Columbia University. Particularly interesting and
powerful are the letters written to Mrs. Roosevelt by children during
the depression that are included in the Dear Mrs. Roosevelt lesson.
Memorial Hall Museum Online
The history of New England is revealed through artifacts and historic
documents. Browse the online collection to view items on a variety
of topics. Use a magic lens to transcribe written documents. View
period clothing from all sides by rotating the picture or watch a
video to see how tools were used during colonial times. Create your
own chronology of events by selecting topics and dates. Detailed
lesson plans for all grade levels are ready to use or may be adapted
to your community.
Continue to imagine that the Websites are so engaging that students
barely notice a ship on the horizon. Rescued, they leave the island
taking the treasure of knowledge with them. Now that is a happy ending.