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Magnetic Poetry

    What it is:  Magnetic Poetry is a virtual edition of magnetic fridge poetry.  Students can choose from four kits to create their ‘magnetic’ poem.  There is Kids Kit, First Words, Best Friends, and Storymaker.  After students have chosen a kit they can choose from three...

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Money Island: a financial literacy virtual world

Posted by admin | Posted in Analyze, Character Education, Math, Middle/High School, Secondary Elementary, Teacher Resources, Understand (describe, explain), Virtual Field Trips, Websites | Posted on 08-02-2012

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What it is: Money Island is a neat site I found today while searching for some fun tie ins for our economic inquiry block at Anastasis.  This enchanting virtual world teaches students about money and how the economy works while they go on quests to destinations like the Eiffel Tower and Atlantis.  Students learn and practice the real-life principles of financial responsibility.  Students build knowledge and skills in three major areas including: saving and spending, earning and investing, and using credit wisely.  In addition to these major areas, students learn how to spend, grow and give money; the difference between wants, needs and taxes; different types of income; gain an understanding of interest; how to use credit wisely; and how to build wealth.
The site includes detailed lesson plans and activity suggestions for the classroom, as well as a specialized area within money island where teachers and parents can see what students are learning and track progress.
Money Island was created in partnership with the Young Americans Bank.  This bank was designed specifically for children under the age of 21!  Our students will be taking a field trip to the Young Americans Bank in Denver to continue their learning during this block.  If you are in the Denver area, it is a great field trip!
How to integrate Money Island into the classroom: Kids are not exposed to enough opportunities to learn and practice financial literacy.  Case in point: the national debt crisis, housing loan disaster, and credit card stats. It baffles me that we don’t spend more time in the classroom helping kids learn about money and finances!  Every teacher should take this on in some capacity, we can’t assume that someone else will teach it.  Kids need to learn about how the economy works prior to being neck deep in financial decisions on a daily basis.  Money Island is a fun introduction to all of this!
Students begin their journey in Money Island with a mission to help character Stone Broke.  Students choose a virtual side-kick who will guide them through Money Island and help them make important decisions.  Students are directed through a series of quests to help Stone Broke while learning about money and how to make sound financial decisions.
Money Island is a virtual world so it takes a bit of time to get all the way through it.  When students login, they are given a special key so they can pick up right where they left off in the game.  This is a great site for a one to one classroom environment or computer lab setting where each student has their own computer.  The site could also be used as a center activity on classroom computers with students rotating through the center throughout the week.  Because students can save their progress, they can play from both school and from home.
Money Island makes a fantastic tie-in to a money or economics unit for kids.
***Hint: Click “Join” to join.  For some reason the “Play” button is a little bit temperamental.  It worked for me the first time I played with it but not the second…not sure what that is all about!
Tips:   There is a new game featured on Money Island…Episode 2 helps students learn how to “win” at the credit game.  There are also fun mini games and comics on the site for kids to interact with and explore!

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

Cyberchase

Posted by admin | Posted in Math, Primary Elementary, Science, Secondary Elementary, Teacher Resources, Websites | Posted on 14-11-2007

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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What it is: Cyberchase is a website aimed at teaching kids that math is everywhere, that everyone can be good at it, and that math can be fun. The Cyberchase website is based on the PBS TV show, teachers can view episode guides, video clips, and character descriptions. The website has two main sections for math enhancement, games and quests. Games include interactive math games and puzzles. Quests are interactive games that allow students to create their own cyber characters and go on cyber quests. Math topics include measurement, patterns, deductive reasoning, saving, spending, budgeting, making hard problems easier, growth by doubling, inverse operations, decimals, negative numbers, combinations, place value, elapsed time, angle measurement, linear measurement, timekeeping, area, volume, bar graphs, equivalent fractions, fractions, data clusters, probability, algebraic thinking, perimeter/area relationship, patterns in music, scale and size, patterns, codes, functions, estimation, counter examples, logic, point of view, using models, 2d and 3d geometry, navigation, symmetry, navigation, proportional thinking, circles, and percents.

How to integrate Cyberchase into the classroom: Cyberchase is an incredible website! With the number of math topics, there is a game to fit every curriculum. The games are fun, interactive and teach critical thinking skills. Students experience math when they use the games and quests. This site really makes math come alive! Use this site to introduce new math concepts (students probably won’t realize that they have learned a new math concept until you dissect it for them afterwards!) The site would also be great to reinforce math concepts that have already be learned. The games and quests make an excellent practice field. Games could be used with the whole class and a projector cart (be ready for a lot of volunteers on this one!) Or individually as a math center or all at once in the computer lab setting.

Tips: Visit the Cyberchase teachers page for lesson plans using the Cyberchase games. This is an outstanding math resource! Even your most resistant math students will love this site!

Please leave a comment and share how you are using Cyberchase in your
classroom.