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Scholastic Listen & Read

  What it is: The Scholastic website is full of truly amazing resources.  Today I ran across one that I hadn’t used before called Scholastic Listen & Read, I heard about it on Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day.  Scholastics Listen and Read is for students in first and second grade.   The site does exactly what it’s name implies, it lets students listen to non-fiction stories and read along.  There are 11 non-fiction stories for first grade social studies including The Path of the President, What Does the President Do, and a Celebration of Earth Day.  There are 15 non-fiction stories focused on animals and food for first grade students.  Second grade students have access to 10 non-fiction stories focused on social studies including Constitution Day and Welcome to a Pilgrim Village.  There are also 11 short non-fiction stories for second grade students focused on animals and food.  Social Studies is a hard subject to teach first and second grade students from a text book because the vocabulary and reading can be especially challenging.  Scholastic Listen and Read solves this problem wonderfully with short, easy to read non-fiction stories that are read aloud to your students.  As an added bonus, each story includes the Scholastic Word Wizard.  This tool floats right on top of the web page.  At any point, students can click on a word in the story and the Scholastic Word Wizard will give them an easy to read definition of the word.  Students can also type a word into the Word Wizard to look it up.     How to integrate Scholastic Listen & Read into the classroom:  Scholastic Listen & Read is ideal for any classroom or computer setting.  The non-fiction stories could be read together as a class with a projector and speaker setup, individually in a computer lab setting, or in small groups as a center in the one or two computer classroom.  The stories are easy to understand and the ability to look up words right from the story makes it a great place for students to learn key social studies and animals and food concepts.     Tips:  Scholastic Listen & Read is a great place for ESL and ELL kids to go for English practice and vocabulary!   Leave a comment and share how you are using Scholastic Listen & Read in your classroom.  

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Museum Box

Posted by admin | Posted in Geography, History, inspiration, Language Arts, Middle/High School, Primary Elementary, Secondary Elementary, Social Studies, Teacher Resources, Virtual Field Trips, Web2.0, Websites | Posted on 06-01-2009

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What it is:    Museum Box is a website that I heard about through a tweet on Twitter a few weeks ago that is really impressing me today (that is saying a lot since today is MacWorld and they are announcing big things!).  Museum Box is based on the work of Thomas Clarkson who collected items in a box to help him in his argument for the abolition of slavery.  He collected items in a box to demonstrate to others the fine craftsmanship and abilities of the African culture.  He used his box as a sort of travelling museum to aid him in his debate.  The Museum Box website provides a place for students to collect information and arguments in a virtual museum box of their own.  They can collect items to provide a description or add to an argument of a historical event, place, or time period.  Students can add images, text, sounds, video, external links, etc. to each compartment of the box helping them form their own virtual museum.  The Museum Box can be shared as a presentation, saved, or printed.  After a box has been created, students can view one anothers boxes and leave comments about the box.  You really have to check this one out!  So neat for history and literature classes!

 

How to integrate Museum Box into the classroom:  Use Museum Box as a medium for students to learn about and collect information about a historical event, person, or time period.  Because students can upload their own content to Museum Box, you might also have them create a box all about them.  This would be a great way for students to get to know each other at the beginning of the year.  Museum box is a neat way to share information about geography, students can make a box all about a place including items in their box that are unique to that place.  The ability to incorporate text, sounds, images, video, and uploaded items makes Museum Box especially impressive!  After students have created boxes, spend time viewing other’s boxes and leaving comments about the box.  This is kind of like a science fair atmosphere for history, geography, and literature.   Yet another tool I wish I had in school!

 

Tips:  Introduce Museum Box to your students by learning about Thomas Clarkson, he is a very interesting historical figure that I had never heard of!

 

Leave a comment and tell us how you are using Museum Box in your classroom.

Comments (1)

Hi Kelly,
Just wanted you to know that I recommended this website to a few teachers after seeing it here and they flipped over it! One is going to use it immediately as the wrap-up activity for a WWI project her class is just finishing and several others are collaborating on a unit about a BC gold rush town called Barkerville. In addition, another teacher just finished a unit on Underground to Canada and another just finished up a wiki on To Kill a Mockingbird, so Clarkson’s story and box will make a nice addition to their units. Thanks so much for posting these excellent resources. You might not always hear from us, but I assure you we’re very appreciative of all your great, practical ideas.
Mallory

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