Friday, March 18, 2016

C-Span and help explain the election process

With the Presidential Election rapidly approaching, here is a great resource for explaining the Electoral College from C-Span Classroom.  Richard Byrne shared this on
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There is also a website from PBS Kids called “The Democracy Project”.  Here is the link:

It has great resources to help students understand the voting process and why voting is important.  There are free templates to create a campaign poster and an interactive map that describes how government affects everyone.

Monday, March 7, 2016

Safe and Great Search Engines for Students!

Kidtopia is a great search engine for children in grades K-5. They learn to do simple research, or just browse through age appropriate topics. Find stories, videos, pictures, homework help, and more.  It was created by school librarians and only uses websites recommended by teachers and school librarians.  It is a Google custom search engine with just the info students are looking for and without the ads, etc.  
 Kiddle, powered by Google’s safe search, is a visual search engine that aims to help preserve kids’ innocence by making certain searches off limits.  
The site looks similar to regular Google as far as color scheme -- but instead of a white background, kids are greeted by a robot alien in outer space.
After a child inputs a search, the first three results that pop up will be pages written specifically for children. The next three results will include content written in a kid-friendly fashion. The final eight or so results will include content written for adults, but screened for certain unsavory words. All results are handpicked and checked by Kiddle editors, according to their site.

Should a child veer off the kid-oriented path that Kiddle has paved, the site’s guard robot will block the search. Kiddle’s privacy policy also aims to help keep kids safe.

Friday, March 4, 2016

Mystery Science Free through end of year!!!

Mystery Science  is offering a free membership through the end of the year.  It has a complete science curriculum for 2nd - 5th grades.  Each lesson is aligned with Common Core and NGSS.  Each “Mystery” is an activity, short series of videos, and discussions.  Each hands-on activity is based on simple supplies you already have in the classroom or at home.  There are PDF print outs, parent letters, and videos with demonstrations for the activities.