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57 Ways to Celebrate National Literacy Day

Did you know that today is National Literacy Day?  It is!  I think that literacy is something to celebrate, being literate is a gift I enjoy every day but don’t stop to appreciate nearly enough.  In honor of National Literacy Day, I thought I would share my favorite technology enhanced literacy tools.  In no particular order, here are my favorite ways to celebrate literacy.  What are your favorites? 1.  Save the Words– an excellent site that values language, vocabulary, and words. 2. Grammaropolis– an enchanting site that teaches students parts of speech through character and story. 3. Signed Stories– an online story collection accompanied by British Sign Language, pictures, and sound. 4. Learn Direct– where students can be the star in their own online storybook. 5. Inkless Tales– a literacy website with a beautiful mission statement “You can do anything. Try, try again. Don’t give up. Experiment. Write, draw, explore and more.” 6. Storybird- a beautiful collaborative storytelling website. 7. My English Images– images that illustrate difficult vocabulary and language concepts. 8.  Lexipedia– a visual dictionary and thesaurus. 9.  Tikatok– Students become published authors with Tikatok 10. Free Reading– an open source instructional program to help you teach early literacy. 11. Word World– a great site for kindergarten and first grade letter and word recognition. 12. Reading Rockets– free reading guides for teachers to improve reading achievement of kids. 13. Super Why! – a site that helps kids gain important foundational reading skills such as alphabet, word families, spelling, comprehension, and vocabulary. 14.  Get Ready to Read!– a great site that helps teachers equip children with the basic skills necessary for learning to read. 15. Roy the Zebra– Excellent site for emerging readers. 16. Fable Vision– the beautiful virtual town filled with stories and games. 17. Kidoons– brings time honored tales from the Brothers Grimm, Hans Christian Andersen, Charles Perrault, Thorton Burgess, and more to life. 18.  GameGoo– fun educational games that help students develop reading and language skills. 19. Read Write Think– a collection of online student resources that support literacy learning k-12. 20. Seussville– the wonderful world of Dr. Seuss brought to life. 21. Digital Booktalk– book trailers that will whet your students appetite for a good book. 22. Storybook Web– a website based on popular children’s stories where students can listen to author’s reading excerpts. 23.  Mee Genius– where students can read books, personalize them, and share them with a friend. 24. Stage’d- a tool that helps students tell stories digitally. 25. Kerpoof– where students can create their own storybooks, comics, and movies. 26.  Lightning Bug– “your writing partner, helping you write a story from beginning to THE END.” 27. ePubBud– for publishing your very own ebooks. 28. Magic Treehouse- a wonderful website where students can engage in the popular book series. 29. The Stacks– a wonderful creation by Scholastic that excites students about reading. 30. The World of Peter Rabbit– an absolutely captivating site based on the work of Beatrix Potter. 31.  My Hippo Has the Hiccups– a free poetry ebook by Kenn Nesbitt. 32. Weboword– a visual vocabulary site. 33. National Geographic Young Explorer– non-fiction for the primary classroom from National Geographic. 34.  Online Audio Stories- an impressive collection of free audio stories. 35. Story Nory– another collection of free audio books for kids. 36.  Skratch Track– a virtual bookshelf for primary students. 37.  Picture Book Maker– a place for students to create picture books. 38. Story Cove– a collection of stories from around the world. 39.  Skype an Author Network– connects teachers, students, and authors over Skype. 40.  Word Ahead Vocabulary Videos– animated vocabulary videos. 41.  My Story Maker– a website where students are in charge of the interactive story. 42. Book Wink– an incredible site that motivates students to read through podcasts and web video. 43. Scholastic Story Starters– a tool that generates writing ideas. 44. Telescopic Text– a site that expands a sentence to demonstrate descriptive writing. 45.  The Tale of Despereaux Adventure- a beautiful interactive story book. 46. Literactive- leveled guided readers, comprehensive phonics activities, and supplemental reading material. 47. Pic Lits- a creative writing site based on pictures. 48.  Speakaboos– a collection of online stories and ebooks. 49. Animailia– a site based on the popular book by Graeme Base. 50. Mrs. P’s Magic Library– an absolutely enchanting site that celebrates books and reading. 51.  Free Rice– practice vocabulary while helping others fight hunger. 52. Shelfari– a virtual bookshelf. 53. Read to Feed- Heifer International reading project for kids. 54. Into the Book– an outstanding site that teaches reading strategies for comprehension. 55. Google Lit Trips– exploring literature using Google Earth. 56. Starfall– a must see website for phonics. 57. Book Adventure– a free reading motivation program. But the very best way to celebrate National Literacy Day…read a book!

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HIP2B²: Science/Math edutainment magazine and videos

Posted by admin | Posted in Analyze, Apply, Evaluate, inspiration, Interactive book, Math, Middle/High School, Science, Secondary Elementary, Teacher Resources, Understand (describe, explain), video, Websites | Posted on 11-02-2011

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What it is: HIP2B² is an edutainment site that aims to show students that subjects that are generally labeled as “difficult” or “hard” can be fun and are important to our future success. HIP2B² is a website, digital magazine, and TV show that work to equip learners with vital life skills including analytical thinking, problem solving, and a curious mindset.  The goal is to encourage curiosity in science and math in everyday life.  The magazine is a high-quality quarterly publication that is free to view online, the magazine uses the Issuu platform for the digital viewing.  You can see an example of the digital HIP2B² embedded above. The TV show can be viewed online, powered by YouTube.

How to integrate HIP2B² into the classroom: The HIP2B² videos and digital magazine are a fantastic way to invigorate a sense of curiosity and discovery in your students.  The digital magazines are really well done, students will eagerly read through them.  Each of the digital magazines is focused on a science or math topic such as mysteries, senses, the environment, technology, origins, animals, safety, food, intelligence, and much more.  Students can view the digital magazines all the way back to June 2007.  Use the digital magazines as inspiration for science and math inquiry.  Students can read through the digital magazines on a classroom computer set up as a reading center, as a class using an interactive whiteboard or projector connected computer, or individually in a lab setting.   Do your students get silent reading time in class? Allow them to use the computers to read through the HIP2B² digital magazine.

In the video section, students can learn about “tricks” of science like invisibility cloaks and floating paperclips or more serious science like nanotechnology and extreme weather.  These videos can be used to introduce a topic or science/math concept or to illustrate a concept.

Are your students working on science and math that encourages analytical thinking, problem solving, and curiosity? Why not have them create their own HIP2B² inspired digital magazine.  Students can put together their own magazine using any word processing or publishing program and upload the finished product to Issuu to share with the world.

Tips: For those of you who don’t have access to YouTube in your building, you can still use these awesome videos in your classrooms with a little bit of pre-planning.  Download and save YouTube videos so that you can show them at school without accessing the YouTube site. UseKeepVidYouTube DownloaderHDKick YouTubeSaveVid, or Zamzar.  Some of these tools will even let you download at school if you know the YouTube url.  The downloaded video should have no trouble playing at school!

Please leave a comment and share how you are using HIP2B² in your classroom!

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