Here are my choices for The Best Science Sites Of 2017 – So Far (not in any order of preference):
NPR has just announced their first show geared towards kids – a science podcast called “Wow In The World.” Here’s how they describe it:
NPR is thrilled to announce the launch of Wow in the World, a new podcast for kids ages 5-12 that illuminates the wonders of science, technology, discovery and inventions….Starting May 15, NPR’s Guy Raz and SiriusXM’s Mindy Thomas will take kids and their grown-ups on a journey into the most incredible science and kid-friendly news stories of the week.
One would think it could also have potential for use in the classroom.
Legends of Learning is a new site that provides custom-built games organized by learning objectives. Teachers can create “playlists” they want their students to access and then monitor their progress. They only have science-related games right now, but plan on adding more related to other subjects soon. You can read more about it at USA Today’s article, ‘Spotify for learning games’ coming to classrooms, and I’ve embedded a video about the site at the bottom of this post. I’m adding it to The Best Sites Where Students Can Work Independently & Let Teachers Check On Progress. It appears the site is free for a month or so after registration (longer if you have fewer students) and then you have to review games, perform other services for the site, or pay per student.
I use short, funny video clips a lot when I’m teaching ELLs, and you can read in detail about how I use them in The Best Popular Movies/TV Shows For ESL/EFL (& How To Use Them). In short, there are many ways to use them that promote speaking, listening, writing and reading (including having students describe – in writing and verbally – a chronological description of what they saw).
I’ve also published quite a few “fun videos” lists during the previous ten years of this blog. You can find those in these lists:
Learning To Learn is an excellent new article at the Harvard Business Review. It highlights four key qualities of an effective learner – aspiration, self-awareness, curiosity, and vulnerability. I’m thinking of dividing the article into four very short sections on each of those qualities and then have students respond to this same prompt for each:
What quality does the writer say is important in order to be an effective learner, and what is her justification? To what extent do you agree or disagree with what she believes? Write an essay responding to these questions; to develop your essay, be sure to include specific examples drawn from your own experience, your observation of others, or any of your reading — including “Learning To Learn” itself.
Tolks is a great tool that lets you create animated dialogues. In many ways, it’s similar to the Google Docs Story Builder, which I was disappointed to see appears to have been shut down. The main problem with Tolks is that you can only use it if you register with Twitter or Facebook, which isn’t going to work with students in schools with Internet content filters.