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An open-source (free) instructional program that helps educators teach early literacy using a wide community of teachers and researchers. FreeReading contains a 40-week scope and sequence of phonological awareness and phonics activities that can support and supplement a typical kindergarten or first grade core or basal program.
Independent Lens Classroom
This PBS site offers some additional excellent lesson plans and online video clips to help students explore a number of Social Studies topics and issues.
This free and interactive learning site offers lessons and courses for nine different languages. See the Features section to find out more about this great service.
Dictionary & Thesaurus
This is a handy tool to have for everyone in the family!
User-created encyclopedia offers information on a wide variety of topics. Search by topic, and also click on any blue keyword to explore that related term.
The Writing Site
Our favorite resource to help parents discover new ways to assess and improve student writing.
Offers free materials for teaching how to navigate the Internet safely, responsibly and effectively. CyberSmart! Curriculum is aligned with ISTE's National Educational Technology Standards (NETS) Performance Indicators.
Mathematics Teaching & Assessment Workshops
A great site for teachers, parents and students where on-demand videos illustrate and explain mathematical concepts and skills in the real world, including algebra, statistics, and geometry. Also includes videos that help with how to assess knowledge and skills in the subject.
(Free sign-up required to view videos.)
Create rubrics without starting from scratch! Rubrics are available on a variety of teaching topics and are customizable. Register for free to save rubrics online for a year.
Rubrics, lesson plans, printables, tips, and more!
AtoZ Teacher Stuff
Includes easy-to-use tools such as the Word Search Puzzle Maker and Handwriting Worksheet Generator, as well aslesson plans by subject and grade level, a variety of printables, and other resources.
Use the left-hand menu titled, "Standards-based Resources" to explore by subject area and find the current featured lesson plans or search by grade range and more specific topic using drop-down menus on subject page.
TV 411: Tune In To Learning
Easy-to-understand lessons & tutorials to help children and adults develop practical skills in Reading, Writing, Vocabulary, Math, and other areas of Learning. Includes lesson on things like Filling out a job application, Reading maps, How to set up a budget, understanding Suffixes, How to use a library, Time management, and many more.
A Maths Dictionary for Kids
This site provides fantastic definitions and examples for all math terms — handy for both students and teachers.
The Math Forum: Teacher2Teacher
This site features various questions that teachers have asked on how to teach various areas in mathematics along with an answer from one of the site's teachers.
Free Software Tools
The following free tools, often referred to as "open source," can make your computer work smarter for you, without spending a dime. Unless stated otherwise, these software programs can be installed on either Windows or Mac operating systems (and may also be available for Linux and others). Like for all software, make sure to read the how-to instructions accompanying them, and keep in mind that you may run across a glitch or two on occasion.
Can't afford to buy Microsoft's Office Suite, but need to create, open, and edit Word documents, PowerPoint presentations, Excel spreadsheets, etc.? Then download the latest version of Open Office. Use the menu on the right-hand side of the home page to see review its components, which include Writer, Impress, Calc, and others. Be aware that the default document type/extension is Open Office specific, so that if you want to save a text document, for example, choose to save it with the file extension of ".doc" rather than the default ".odt" — that way others, who do have the Microsoft versions, will also be able to open your files. Note that there are a few functions that don't always work exactly how they would in the Microsoft programs, but generally these Open Office programs work well enough to get by doing the things you need.
An award-winning drawing program designed for children ages 3-12.
Download this Knowledge Modeling Kit to easily create concept maps for a variety of purposes.
Sound recording and editing software that works with most computer operating systems.
Similar to Adobe's Photoshop program, GIMP can be used for photo retouching, image composition and image authoring. Go to the Downloads page for the appropriate package to download for your system (look under the heading "Binaries for various platforms), and make sure to review the Documentation before getting started.
Easily create and manage your own website — this program is similar to Microsoft's Frontpage and Adobe's Dreamweaver (formerly owned by Macromedia). This site promotes Dotster as a domain buyer/manager and web hosting provider, but keep in mind that other services such as GoDaddy.com or a local hosting service will work just as well with this software program. Make sure to review the helpful Learn How To Build Your Website Using Nvu page before getting started.
This tool combines the power of Google Search with satellite imagery, maps, terrain and 3D buildings to put the world's geographic information at your fingertips. The free version is great, or you can pay a little more for more advanced features.
- Fly to your house. Just type in an address, press Search, and you’ll zoom right in.
- Search for schools, parks, restaurants, and hotels. Get driving directions.
- Tilt and rotate the view to see 3D terrain and buildings.
- Save and share your searches and favorites
Photostory 3 for Windows XP
This free Microsoft program provides tools for improving and sharing digital photos.
Persistence of Vision Raytracer
A high-quality software tool for creating 3-dimensional graphics.
Not free, but offers a 30-day trial of their software program for Windows operating systems that translates text on the screen into speech through your speakers.