Posts Tagged ‘free resource’

Free World History Lessons

December 4th, 2008

Recommended Website:
World History for Us All

Age Range: 11-17+ (Middle School and High School)

Note: Sandra Wallace, a ClickSchooling subscriber in New Zealand, recommended this website and co-wrote the review. You can learn more about her at the end of this review. :)

This website is a project of San Diego State University in cooperation with the National Center for History in the Schools at UCLA. While it is not complete (new material is being regularly added) it is a useful free resource for teaching world history.

The material is divided into eleven main units with nine big eras sandwiched between an introductory unit on “History, Geography and Time” and a concluding unit entitled “Past and Future.”

For each unit there are three choices:

  • A Panorama that gives the big picture overview of what was happening in that particular era;
  • Landscape units that focus on relatively large developments in that time period, usually with a cross-cultural or comparative element;
  • Close-up units, which have a narrower historical focus.

All the teaching units can be downloaded as PDF files and some can also be viewed online as Powerpoint presentations. The PDF files are reminiscent of colorfully illustrated history textbooks.

Within the structure of the 11 main units, there is a focus on three essential questions relating to humans and the environment, humans and other humans, and humans and ideas.

Seven key themes are also integrated:

  1. Patterns of Population
  2. Economic Networks and Exchange
  3. Uses and Abuses of Power
  4. Haves and Have-Nots
  5. Expressing Identity
  6. Science, Technology, and the Environment
  7. Spiritual Life and Moral Codes

The strength of this site is that it is both comprehensive and very flexible. Everything you need to study world history can be found in one place – the PDFs I have checked out have all the supporting material included, yet you can pick and choose from the units to structure a course that suits you.

You can use Panorama units to skim through some eras, while using all the relevant landscape and close-up units when you reach an era you are especially interested in.

Alternatively, you can pick and choose units that focus on the one or two key themes that you want to highlight.

While a complete world history course could be based on this site, you could also pick and choose units to supplement an existing course, or simply explore it based on interest.

One more thing….

At first glance this site may seem complicated to navigate, but if you invest some time exploring just one unit or theme, you will begin to see the format is well-organized and easy to use. :)

Sandra Wallace and
Diane Flynn Keith
for ClickSchooling
Copyright 2008, All Rights Reserved
www.Homefires.com
www.Carschooling.com
www.UniversalPreschool.com

********* ABOUT SANDRA WALLACE **********

Sandra Wallace has a PhD in History but now happily spends her time homeschooling her four children (aged from 8 to 16) in Christchurch, New Zealand.

*****************************************

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Are You The Parent of a Preschooler? You’ll Love Universal Preschool’s Learning Calendar! It’s chock-full of fun, easy activities & time-saving resources for learning with little ones all year long! Get your copy today…

DID YOU MISPLACE A ClickSchooling Review? Do you need to find an educational website – fast! Visit the ClickSchooling archives.

Helping Your Child Become A Reader & More!

October 22nd, 2008

Recommended Website:
U.S. Dept. of Education

Age Range: 0-17 (varies by publication, but most are for kids in grades PreK-5)

The U.S. Department of Education publishes all kinds of FREE resource materials for parents to help their children learn. At this website, you can access a book titled, “Helping Your Child Become a Reader,” that contains all kinds of information, tips, and activities that you can do with young children (from infancy to 6 years old) that will build a foundation for becoming a good reader. You can either read the book online or download the pdf and print it out.

But that’s not all! “Helping Your Child Become A Reader” is just one book in the “Helping Your Child” series that provide lessons and activities in a variety of subjects that include:

  • Helping Your Child Learn Science – This booklet provides parents of children ages 3 through 10 with information, tools and activities they can use in the home and community to help their child develop an interest in the sciences and learn about the world around them. (Note: There is an error on the description page of this book. It says it contains “activities for children in preschool through age 5.” That should read “preschool through grade 5.” )
  • Helping Your Child Learn Mathematics – This booklet is made up of fun activities that parents can use with children from preschool age through grade 5 to strengthen their math skills and build strong positive attitudes toward math.
  • Helping Your Child Learn History – This booklet is designed to help families prepare their children to achieve the lifelong task of finding their place in history by helping them learn what shaped the world into which they were born.
  • Helping Your Child Become A Responsible Citizen – This booklet provides information about the values and skills that make up character and good citizenship and what you can do to help your child develop strong character. Contains activities for elementary, middle and high school-aged children.

There are several other books in the series as well. You can access them all here.

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Are You The Parent of a Preschooler? You’ll Love Universal Preschool’s Learning Calendar! It’s chock-full of fun, easy activities & time-saving resources for learning with little ones all year long! Get your copy today…

DID YOU MISPLACE A ClickSchooling Review? Do you need to find an educational website – fast! Visit the ClickSchooling archives.

History of Chicago with Audio and Activities (CSAW)

May 15th, 2008

Recommended Website:
Chicago History Museum: Great Chicago Stories

Age Range: 8-17 (Grades 3-12)

ClickScholar Cie Buschle recommended this website sponsored by the Chicago History Museum. It offers a terrific, engaging history of Chicago presented through historical fiction stories that are accompanied by lessons and activities, as well as investigations of museum artifacts.

When you get to the site you’ll see a brief introduction. Use the menu to explore:

  • Elementary Stories – Enjoy 6 historical fiction stories (designed for grades 3-4) that cover topics such as the Great Migration, baseball, railroad transportation, hot dogs and more!
  • High School Stories – Enjoy 6 historical fiction stories for grades 9-12 that cover themes such as abolition, public housing, immigration, labor, Progressivism, the Jazz Age, and politics.

In both of the above sections – you can click on any story title and a new page opens where you can read the text (accompanied by illustrations) or listen to the audio version complete with illustrations and text so you can follow along. You can easily download these streaming multimedia and MP3 files to your portable audio player – making it a great FREE resource for Carschooling! :)

  • Interactive History Map – You’ll find an interactive map for every story. Use it to explore the locations and sights mentioned in the stories. You can see and compare what Chicago looked like then and now.
  • Classroom Activities – This is an amazing resource for those who really want to delve into the historical topics introduced in the stories. Each story comes with 5 lessons that work together to form a UNIT STUDY around the narrative using multi-media to teach and entertain. As the site explains: “The lessons are flexible and can be adapted for shorter or longer exploration of a topic. To that end, each lesson is offered as a separate PDF download. We hope you will make them your own, through creative teaching and application of the materials to best fit your instructional style and the needs of your students.” This is great news for homeschool use!

While this site teaches students about the history of Chicago through compelling stories, many of the themes covered serve as terrific introductions to the people and events that impacted U.S. and world history as well.

This website is a demonstration of educational technology at its best, and gets a ClickSchooling Award for Excellence!

DID YOU MISPLACE A ClickSchooling Review? Do you need to find an educational website – fast! Visit the ClickSchooling archives at: http://www.clickschooling.com/.

Free Literature Study Guides & More!

July 18th, 2007

Recommended Website:

Barnes & Noble SPARKNOTES

Age Range: 11 and up (approximately middle school, high school, and beyond)

ClickSchooling list member Tiffany Davis in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma recommended today’s site. She wrote:

“I just discovered a great resource for study guides at this site from Barnes and Noble. There is great information on classic and popular books and authors, much like ‘Cliff Notes.’ Free!”

When you get to the site you will see a menu of free online study guides in a variety of subject categories. You can read most of the Study Guides for free online. They are punctuated with advertisements (some are distracting), but it’s a small price to pay for the free resource. The good news is that if you want to avoid the nuisance of the ads, you can download and print out the pdf file for a slight fee (about $5).

To give you an idea of what you can expect in the field of Language Arts — under “Spark Notes: Study Guides” you’ll find:

  • Literature – A stunning array of free study guides for book titles spanning
    from “Across Five Aprils” to “Walden.” Pick a title, click, and a new page
    opens that contains the plot overview, character list, a chapter by chapter
    summary and analysis, study questions and essay topics, a quiz, and
    suggestions for further reading.
  • Shakespeare – The works of The Bard are summarized and analyzed by act and scene, and includes study questions, a quiz and more.
  • Drama – Find summaries and analysis of plays by Edward Albee, Euripides,
    Tennessee Williams, Arthur Miller, Eugene O’Neill, and more. Explore the
    suggestions for further study.
  • Poetry – From Chaucer to Yeats read the summaries and analysis of the work of great poets and try the suggested activities.
  • Writing – A remarkable grammar glossary with easy-to-find answers on
    everything from proper usage of commas and semicolons to superlatives and more.

But there’s MUCH MORE beyond Language Arts! In the History category you’ll
find study guides on important eras in American and European history along
with biographies of people of historical importance. In Math and Science
you’ll find guides to Algebra, Precalculus, Chemistry, Physics, Astronomy
and more. Other subject areas include Film, Health, Philosophy, Psychology,
and Economics.

Bookmark this website to keep for easy reference.

Create-A-Graph!

August 7th, 2006

Recommended Website:
Create A Graph

Today’s website allows you and your students to create graphs and charts using the data you provide. The National Center for Education Statistics sponsors this site to help students communicate information visually that can be difficult to understand without an illustration.

When you get to the site you will find five different graphs to chose from that include:

  • Bar
  • Line
  • Area
  • Pie
  • XY

Just select a graph and a new page opens. Use the tabs on the right to design your graph, input data, create graph labels, etc. Then, you can preview your customized graph before you print it or save it. This is a great FREE resource. I suggest you bookmark it. :)

Free Math Games & Worksheets for Pre-K Through Grade 5

March 20th, 2006

Recommended Website:
SoftSchools.com

The owner of this website submitted it for a ClickSchooling review. Softschools.com is a free math and language arts resource website for preschool to 5th grade. Registered users can track their progress on math and language arts practice drills — but you don’t have to register to use the online drill and practice interactives or to generate your own, printable math worksheets.

When you get to the website you will see a brief introduction and the featured activities for the month of March — some are themed around holidays. That is followed by a menu of math games, worksheets and more.

If you want to access math activities/worksheets by grade level use the menu at the top of your screen to click on a particular grade from Pre-K through Grade 5. A new page opens with a menu of games and drills for that grade.

You can also use the menu on the left side of the screen to access activities by topic including math games, math worksheets, phonics, science, social studies, Spanish and more.

A really nice feature of this site is that they allow you to turn off the ads — so your children can use the site without being influenced to buy anything. :)

Bookmark this site, its a terrific, free resource that many of you will want to use more than once.

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