Posts Tagged ‘France’

Biographies of Scientists

January 29th, 2008

Recommended Website:
Eric Weisstein’s World of Scientific Biography

Age Range: 11 and up (approximately)

This website offers over 1,000 encyclopedia-style biographies of scientists along with illustrations. When you get to the site, use the menu on the left side of the screen to search for a scientist by:

  • Alphabetical Index – An A to Z list of all of the scientists and mathematicians whose biographies are archived on the website. Click on any one, and a new page opens with the scientist’s picture and bio. References are provided as well.
  • Branch of Science – Search for a scientist by his/her field of study from Archaeology to Sociology.
  • Gender/Minority Status – Women, African Americans, Asian Americans, etc. (Note: This section is woefully short on scientists of varying races and ethnicities. Fortunately, the FAQ section on this website tells you how to submit names for inclusion.)
  • Nationality – Find scientists from many nations including the U.S., China, Egypt, France, Germany, Israel, Japan, Pakistan, and Russia.
  • Prize Winners – Read the Bios of Scientists and Mathematicians who have been awarded prizes (i.e., The Nobel) for their work.

As mentioned previously, there are over 1,000 entries and I only read about 10. Therefore, AS ALWAYS, parents should preview the site to determine suitability of content.

Christmas Cookie Curriculum!

December 8th, 2007

Continuing with our Holiday Theme…

Christmas cookies are a staple of the holiday season. I thought we could study “art” through decorating these sweet confections. I was surprised to discover how many other subjects could be incorporated into the act of
baking cookies. I hope you enjoy visiting these websites…

Recommended Websites:

The History of Cookies

A fascinating account of the history of cookies from the 7th Century to modern times. Includes history about specific cookies too such as, Anzac Biscuits, Biscotti, Chocolate Chip Cookies, Fortune Cookies, Macaroons,
Peanut Butter Cookies, Snickerdoodles and more. It includes recipes too!

Christmas Cookie Language Arts: A Random Christmas Cookie Story Generator

At this site, you simply enter your name and gender and the computer generates a really silly Christmas cookie story using that information. The story is generated in one, long, run-on sentence. Print it out and correct the punctuation. :)

NOTE TO PARENTS: As always, you should test this before you let the kids try it.

Christmas Cookie Math

You’ll find Christmas-themed math word problems here. One of the problems involves Christmas cookies, and another is about making gingerbread men. Don’t forget that sugar cookies can be cut into geometric shapes. Cookies can be decorated with numbers and geometric shapes too. Tots can sort the various kinds of Christmas cookies. Have fun! :)

A Christmas Cookie CHEMISTRY Mystery

(Note: Geared for Middle School and up.) Get A FREE, downloadable and printable chemistry lesson themed around
Christmas cookies. You’ll also find the printable teacher’s classroom instructions.

Social Studies with Christmas Cookie Recipes from Around the World

Find Christmas cookie recipes from Australia, Austria, Canada, China, Denmark, England, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Holland, Hungary,
Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Mexico, Norway, Peru, Poland, Puerto Rico, Russia, Scotland, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, The United States of America, and
Yugoslavia! Ask your children to find the country of origin of each type of cookie you bake on a globe or map.

Free, Printable Christmas Cookie E-Book

The Family Education website offers this FREE, downloadable and printable E-Book of easy-to-make Holiday Cookie recipes.

Art: Cookie Decorating 101

Explore these terrific tips for decorating cookies before and/or after
baking them.


Virtual Tour of Impressionist Art

July 21st, 2007

Recommended Website:

This website (previously featured in 2003) offers a guided tour of late 19th century and early 20th century France and the Impressionism art movement that defined the era. When you get to the site, you will see a painting. To the left are two menu choices that include:

  • Experience Impressionism — Click on this to take a fun tour of France via the Impressionist art movement. Through text and illustrations, you will learn: what constitutes Impressionism artwork (and what doesn’t); why it was considered revolutionary; review the political, scientific, social, and cultural influences that defined Impressionism and its ultimate acceptance in the art world; and learn about the many Impressionistic painters.
  • Teach Impressionism — Click on this to download or browse online lessons that teach the major themes of Impressionist artwork. The lessons include a detailed look at artists such as Monet, Degas, Cezanne, Van Gogh, and Renoir. Designed for classroom teachers, these lessons can be easily used in the homeschool and are geared for grades 1-8.

Ancient Civilizations

March 29th, 2007

Recommended Website: The Ancient World’s Great Civilizations

ClickSchooling list member Olena recommended today’s website that provides
information about ancient cultures, specifically designed with students and
teachers in mind.

When you get to the site you will see some featured ancient cultures in the
center of the homepage. Click on the links, and you’ll find that some open
to pages providing a brief overview of a particular ancient culture, while
others open to new websites containing an array of multi-media content
including interactive maps and flash animations. Use the menu on the left
side of the home page to access all of the ancient cultures featured at this
site including those of:

  • Arabia
  • America
  • Armenia
  • Australia
  • Canada
  • Cambodia
  • China
  • Chile
  • Egypt
  • Ethiopia
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • India
  • Ireland
  • Israel
  • Italy
  • Mexico
  • Persia
  • Peru
  • Poland
  • Romania
  • Scotland
  • Spain

Again, this site provides a simple overview of some cultures, and more
in-depth info on others. Even the links leading to pages with less content
serve as great introductions that could springboard your child to further
independent investigation. You will also find recommended educational
resources (books, DVDs, etc.) for sale — but you are not obligated to
purchase a thing.

Virtual Field Trip to a Nutcracker Museum and More!

December 15th, 2006

Recommended Website:
Leavenworth Nutcracker Museum

People of all ages love nutcrackers — as much for their functionality as
their whimsical design. At this time of year, we see nutcrackers in holiday
displays and on dining room tables. The glorious strains of music from
Tchaikovsky’s “Nutcracker Ballet” permeate our homes as well as the mall,
reinforcing our fascination with nutcrackers during the holidays. But what
is the history of the nutcracker? How are they made? How many designs are
there? How many different ways are there to crack a nut?

Answers to these questions and more await you at the Leavenworth Nutcracker
Museum, located in the state of Washington, and the destination of today’s
virtual field trip. When you get to the site, you will see the words “Museum
Tour” along with a text introduction and photographs (click on the photos to
see larger images). Scroll to the bottom of the page and click on “Next” to
read a short but fascinating history of nutcrackers complete with terrific
photographs of varying designs from ancient times to present day. But that’s
not all…

The Museum has designed an entirely separate website all about nutcrackers
just for kids! It includes 5 free Lesson plans that include slide shows
depicting how nutcrackers are made and a photo gallery of collectible
nutcrackers! Here’s the gold…

Recommended Website:
Kids Love Nutcrackers

When you get to the site you will see the Lesson Index that includes:

Lesson 1 — Wooden Toy Soldier Nutcrackers. Click on this to learn about the
history of these traditional nutcrackers. Scroll to the bottom of the page

Lesson 2 — Discover what materials are used to make nutcrackers. See photos
of ancient and modern metal, wood, and porcelain nutcrackers.

Lesson 3 — What kind of nutcrackers are there? Archeologists have
discovered 4,000 year old rocks used as nutcrackers. You’ll be surprised at
the variety of tools people have used to crack a nut.

Lesson 4 — Find out all of the odd ways to crack a nut by watching a
wonderful SLIDE SHOW OF UNUSUAL NUTCRACKERS (located at the bottom of the

Lesson 5 — Where are nutcrackers made? Check the world map on this page to
find out. Directly below it you’ll find photos of nutcrackers made in
Argentina, Australia, Austria, Canada, England, France, Germany, India,
Italy, Japan, Norway, Russia, Spain, Switzerland, the United States, and

This is a really fun way to learn some history and social studies that tie
in with the holidays.

Virtual Field Trip: Cave of Chauvet-Pont-d’Arc!

December 8th, 2006

Recommended Website:
The Cave of Chauvet-Pont-d’Arc!

Take a virtual field trip to the world’s only known well-preserved
prehistoric cave drawings! There is much to be discovered at this remarkable

For example, animals depicted on the walls of the cave astonished
scientists, who had no other record that these species existed at that
particular time in history. The cave will never be open to the public,
because a variation in temperature of even one thousandth of a degree could
cause these paintings to begin to deteriorate. Only a very select group of
scientists and artists are being allowed to enter, slowly and painstakingly
exploring, documenting, and analyzing the paintings, bones, and other
evidence within the cave, much of which they estimate to be about 32,000
years old. The virtual tour of this cave is available in French, English,
and Spanish, so that all of us to whom access is forbidden, can see and
appreciate the wonders that it contains! (The French government is planning
to keep this website updated as new discoveries are made.)

To begin your journey, click the small square at the bottom right of the
page, which says, “Visit the Cave.” Once there, you will see a map marked
with small red and green dots. Click any dot to see a picture and
description of what can be found in that part of the cave. Be sure to click
on the small yellow squares on each picture to get a closer look! If you are
unable to access the very first red dot, use the back arrow at the bottom of
the following picture to backtrack to the beginning of the tour. (The little
red prism near each dot is meant to indicate the angle at which each
photograph was taken.)

After you have completed the tour, the little house in the top left corner
of the screen will take you back to the home page, from which the curious
can explore many articles about the discovery, authentication, and
preservation of this amazing cave, the significance of its drawings,
first-hand accounts of privileged visitors (artists, poets, dignitaries,
etc.), and even the legal battles involved in its procurement. :)

And now for a hidden gem: Click on the small gold coin at the bottom left of
the screen to access several more archaeological tours of the wonders of
France, including tours of Gaul and ancient Roman Paris. The most
recently-added virtual tour even has remarkably clear narration in French
Sign Language! (To access that one, you will need to click “Francais,”
select the photo marked “Nouveau,” then select “Langue des Signes.”)