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Inkless Tales

What it is: Inkless Tales is a neat literacy website with a mission statement that I love: “You can do anything. Try, try again. Don’t give up. Experiment. Write, draw, explore, and more!”  Inkless tales has features that will infuse your literacy classroom with life including: an animated alphabet, coloring pages (for print or online), online games, offline fun (finger puppets, downloads, crafts), Mother Goose rhymes and riddles, online stories to read, poetry to read, poetry to listen to, poetry to write, Inkless tunes, tongue twisters, and a place to learn science.  Inkless Tales is an absolute treasure trove for the primary classroom. How to integrate Inkless Tales into the classroom: Inkless Tales was created by author Elizabeth Williams Bushey with the goal of bring quality literacy content to children around the world in an online environment.  She has hit the nail on the head with this site.  Inkless Tales makes an excellent literacy center on classroom computers.  Students can visit the Inkless Tales site to read, practice their alphabet, play learning games, etc.  Inkless Tales also makes an outstanding poetry center where students can read, listen to, and write poetry.  The animated alphabet would be fun to use when learning letters on a projector connected computer or an interactive whiteboard. Tips: I learned about Inkless Tales from @2sparkley on Twitter, an educator you must follow! Leave a comment and tell us how you are using Inkless Tales in your classroom.

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512 Paths to the White House Interactive Infographic for the Election #election2012

Posted by admin | Posted in Analyze, Evaluate, Geography, Government, Interactive Whiteboard, Math, Middle/High School, Secondary Elementary, Social Studies, Teacher Resources, Understand (describe, explain), Websites | Posted on 05-11-2012

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What it is: Tomorrow is Election day!  I couldn’t be more excited to see an end to the obnoxious political ads. Living in a swing state means that EVERY commercial I see is a political ad. At this point, all I have been convinced of is that the world may in fact be ending…the choices here are dire. One thing I am now passionate about: campaign reform. I digress.

512 Paths to the White House is a super cool interactive feature on the New York Times website.  Students can test out selecting a winner for the swing states and see the paths to victory available to either candidate.  Students can also mouse over the infographic and see what happens in the breakdown of each option.  According to the infographic, there are 5 paths to a tie.

How to integrate 512 Paths to the White House into the classroom: This really is a cool infographic to explore before the election.  Students can explore this infographic on classroom computers as an Election Day discovery center, as a class on an interactive whiteboard or projector-connected computer, or individually on computers.

This site makes a wonderful opening to discussion about the electoral college, the election process for the US, and why the swing states determine the outcome of the election.  At the bottom of the page, there are some specific scenarios for students to explore.  These scenarios also open up great conversations about economies in different states, beliefs of each party, political advertising, liberal vs. conservative states, etc.

In the secondary math class, students can explore probability, statistics and unpack the data offered here.  It is pretty interesting to see the paths each candidate has to winning based on who wins each battleground state.

Tips: Follow up on Wednesday, November 7th with how accurate the 512 Paths to the White House was.  Students can use this tool as they watch the election to predict who the winner will be.

Leave a comment and tell us how you are using  512 Paths to the White House in your classroom.

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Comments (2)

Dear Mrs. Tenkely,
I think that is a great learning tool. I would have loved to predict the swing states if I would have known about it. Hopefully, I will be teaching in the next election and can use that in my classroom. I bet the ads become so annoying because we are not even a swing state and they drove me crazy!

Hi! My name is Brittany Leavitt, and I am a student in EDM310 at the University of South Alabama. I was assigned to your blog through this class to read and comment on. I have never been very interested in politics myself, but I find this blog post extremely informative. I loved the infographic, and the different ways that you thought to use it in the classroom. Thanks for sharing! Hopefully, as a secondary educator in history, I can use this and similar things to get my students involved in elections and politics! Thanks for sharing!

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