Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day…

…For Teaching ELL, ESL, & EFL

June 29, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

The Best Sites Where Students Can Transcribe Historical Texts

Having students spend some time transcribing historical texts, whether they be materials from Shakespeare’s time, slave narratives, or war correspondence, can be an engaging and educational experience. Talking about doing something that has an authentic audience!

Here are some places that offer opportunities for volunteer transcribers:

Zoonirverse has offers tons of possibilities. Read more about it at “Zooniverse” Is One Of The Coolest Ed Sites On The Web – I Can’t Believe I’m Just Hearing About It!

Last Seen: Finding Family After Slavery is a site for genealogists and researchers where they and others can search through incredibly tragic and moving ads former slaves published looking for their lost family members. Learn more about it at  Students & Teachers Can Transcribe Ads From Former Slaves Looking For Their Families.

The Smithsonian Institution has a Transcription Center for volunteers.

The National Archives has a Citizen Archivist program.

The University of Iowa has something they call the DIY History program.

You can transcribe papers from the War Department of the early United States here.

Let me know what I’m missing!

June 26, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

The Best Harry Potter Teaching & Learning Resources

The first Harry Potter book was published twenty years ago today.

Here are are a few related teaching and learning resources (feel free to suggest others):

As usual, The New York Times Learning Network has you covered with Teaching and Learning About ‘Harry Potter’ With The New York Times.

Teaching Harry Potter is from the National Education Association.

Over the years, I’ve also shared several posts about J.K. Rowling:

Illustrated J.K. Rowling Quote On Failure

‘I’m sorry to disappoint you’: JK Rowling tweets her rejection letters

Here are some lesson resources specifically for English Language Learners:

Learn pronouns and the importance of learning from failures and mistakes through this interactive on J.K. Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter series.  It’s a lesson I posted for ELLs at The NY Times Learning Network.

Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (EFL activities) is from Sandy Millin.

Michelle Henry has a ton of resources.

ESL Printables has many free…Potter printables.

The ISL Collective also has lots of ELL printable sheets.

Harry Potter twenty year anniversary is from The British Council.

June 22, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

The Best Suggestions On Ways Teachers Can Sanely Approach PD Over The Summer & Still Have Time To Relax

It’s summertime and, in addition to getting some R & R, it’s an opportune time for us educators to also pursue some kind of useful professional development (you might also be interested in The Best Resources On Professional Development For Teachers — Help Me Find More).

I thought it would be helpful to compile a list of suggestions and resources – feel free to offer others in the comments section:

If you don’t have a life like me, and are planning/hoping to write a book, check out So, You Want To Write A Book? Here’s The Best Advice…

Dive into Summer Professional Learning – and More! is from Middleweb.

Sharing Your Best Work With Other Teachers is from Edutopia.

Write an Op-Ed piece: How to write an opinion essay and why you should do it now is from Kappan Online.

If you are going to attend some conferences, here is some specific advice:

Shy? Going to a Conference? – Try These Strategies to Connect is from Richard Byrne.

A Beginner’s Guide to Education Conferences is from Middleweb.

10 hints to make the most of teaching and academic conferences is from Statistics Learning Center.

If you can’t attend the ISTE conference this year, you can explore it “virtually”:

There are also Webinars, and Richard Byrne has you covered with Three Tips for Getting More Out of Webinars.

If you’re a teacher of ELLs, and didn’t participate in our virtual conference last Saturday, all the videos are still available: Video(s): My #VirtuEL17 Session On SEL & ELLs (Plus Supporting Links) & Everyone Else’s Session, Too!

You might also want to peruse, at your convenience, these lists:

The Best Articles (& Blog Posts) Offering Practical Advice & Resources To Teachers In 2017 – So Far

All My NY Times Posts For English Language Learners – Linked With Descriptions

All My BAM Radio Shows – Linked With Descriptions

The Best Resources, Articles & Blog Posts For Teachers Of ELLs In 2017 – So Far

All Mid-Year 2017 “Best” Lists In One Place

June 22, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

A Beginning List For Learning About The 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics

Just as I’ve recently gotten a head start on the 2020 Olympics (see A Beginning List For Learning About The 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics), I thought I’d do the same for the 2018 one.

You might also be interested in:

The Best Resources On The 2016 Rio Olympics

The Best Sites For Learning About The Sochi 2014 Winter Olympic Games

The Best Sites For Learning About The London 2012 Olympics

The Best Sites To Learn About The Vancouver Winter Olympics

The Best Sites To Teach & Learn About The Olympics

Here are my choices for the best resources on the 2018 Winter Olympics:

You’ll want to start at the two official sites for the 2018 Olympic Games.

Rural South Korean County Prepares For Role As 2018 Winter Olympics Host is from NPR.

NBC has a multimedia site on the Olympics.

The Telegraph newspaper already has a site for all their stories about the games.

Check out my New York Times post for English Language Learners  on the Winter Olympics and using picture dictation in the classroom. It includes a student interactive and teaching ideas.  It’s about the last Olympics, but the ideas can easily be adapted and modified.

Winter Olympics: Sport by Sport is a good ESPN interactive on all the winter sports.

Winter Olympics: The drama of the Games is from The BBC.

Winter Olympics resources from EFL Classroom 2.0.

Here’s an interactive from the BBC on the history of the Olympic Games.

Here is a collection of interactive graphics from The Washington Post on the Olympics.  It’s from the last Olympics, but many are still relevant.

Tricks is a NY Times feature: “Snowboarders and skiers have an extensive vocabulary of spins and flips. Some tricks are named for their technical requirements, others for their flair. Here, some of the best riders describe the joy and fear that come with these jaw-dropping maneuvers.”

The Beginner’s Guide to Watching Olympic Figure Skating Like a Super Fan is from The Atlantic.

How Olympians Stay Motivated is an excellent article in The Atlantic, and here’s an excerpt that tells you about it:

We can’t all be Olympic athletes. (In fact some of us, including your humble narrator, should not be allowed anywhere near ice or blades.) But we all face times when we really don’t want to do something that we, nonetheless, really have to do. Drawing from interviews with top athletes and their coaches, along with psychological studies of athletes, here are seven ways Olympians stay motivated through the training slog. I doubt teachers will find a more useful article on the Olympics — piece combines the high interest and topic subject of the Olympics with just about every priority in Social Emotional Learning.

What Do the Olympic Rings Mean? is from Mental Floss.

Looking Back: Photos From the First 12 Winter Olympics is from The Atlantic.

Ski Jumping is a cool interactive from The New York Times.

New Scientist shares the odds of getting injured in each Olympic sport.

What’s the Most Dominant Country In Each Winter Olympic Sport? is from The Atlantic.

A Brief History of Sexism in TV Coverage of the Olympics is from The Atlantic.

The Olympic City Project has photos of former Olympic host sites.

Here are a bunch of videos from Infobytes:

June 19, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

A Collection Of Resources On “Tricky” Teacher Topics

My post yesterday on eating in class (see What Are Your Rules About Students Eating In Class?) received a lot of feedback, and it prompted me to think about what other “tricky” topics teachers discuss among ourselves or are asked about by others.

By “tricky,” I mean topics that generally either don’t have a definitive correct answer or, if they do, it can be a complicated one to explain.

Here’s what I have so far (let me know what other topics you think belong on this list):

What Are Your Rules About Students Eating In Class?

The Best Research On Listening To Music When Studying

The Best (Or, At Least, The Most Interesting) Posts On Teacher Attire

The Best Data On How Much Money Teachers Pay Out Of Their Own Pocket – What Do You Spend?

The Best Research On How Many Decisions A Teacher Makes Each Day

The Best Resources For Learning Why Teacher Merit Pay Is A Bad Idea

The Best Articles For Helping To Understand Both Why Teacher Tenure Is Important & The Reasons Behind Seniority-Based Layoffs

The Best Resources For Learning Why School Vouchers Are A Bad Idea (& Other Commentaries On “Choice”)

Best Posts On Classroom Management

Best Posts On “Motivating” Students

The Best Resources For Learning About Homework Issues

The Best Resources For Learning About Grade Retention, Social Promotion & Alternatives To Both

The Best Resources On Grading Practices

The Best Resources For Learning About The “Value-Added” Approach Towards Teacher Evaluation

The Best Rubric Sites (And A Beginning Discussion About Their Use)

The Best Resources For Learning About How Class Size Does Matter

The Best Sites For Getting Some Perspective On International Test Comparison Demagoguery 

The Best Places To Learn What Impact A Teacher (& Outside Factors) Have On Student Achievement

The Best Sites For Learning That Money Does Matter For Schools

The Best Posts & Articles Explaining Why Schools Should Not Be Run Like Businesses

The Best Resources For Learning Why Teachers Unions Are Important

The Best Posts & Articles About Videotaping Teachers In The Classroom

The Best Resources Showing Why We Need To Be “Data-Informed” & Not “Data-Driven”

The Best Posts & Articles Raising Concerns About Teach For America

The Best Posts Debunking The Myth Of “Five Great Teachers In A Row”

The Best Posts & Articles To Learn About “Fundamental Attribution Error” & Schools

A Beginning “The Best…” List On The Dangers Of Privatizing Public Education

The Best Posts About The Khan Academy

The Best Resources For Understanding How To Interpret Education Research

The Best Resources On Teacher/Student Use Of Social Media

A Beginning List Of The Best Posts & Articles On Accelerated Reader

The Best Posts Questioning If Direct Instruction Is “Clearly Superior”

The Best Resources For Learning About Parent Fundraising & Equity Issues

The Best Resources For Learning About The 10,000 Hour Rule & Deliberate Practice

The Best Resources For Learning About Ability Grouping & Tracking — Help Me Find More

The Best Evidence For Why Giving Schools “Report Cards” Is Bad — Help Me Find More

The Best Resources On Why Improving Education Is Not THE Answer To Poverty & Inequality

The Best Articles Showing Why Education Reform Is NOT The Best Way To Fight Poverty

The Best Research Demonstrating That Lectures Are Not The Best Instructional Strategy

The Best Posts & Articles Highlighting Why We Need To Be Very Careful Around Ed Tech

The Best Articles Showing Social Emotional Learning Isn’t Enough

The Best Advice On Using Education Technology

The Best Resources For Learning About Balanced Literacy & The “Reading Wars”

The Best Posts & Articles On How To Teach “Controversial” Topics

The Best Posts, Articles & Videos Explaining Why Punishment Is Often Not The Best Classroom Strategy

The Best Research Available On The Use Of Technology In Schools

The Best Resources On The Awful Friedrichs Case

The Best Articles Pointing Out That Our Schools Are Not Failing — Please Suggest More

A Collection Of Advice On Talking To Students About Race, Police & Racism

The Best Resources For Learning About Cognitive Bias

The Best Posts & Articles About Why Book “Leveling” Is A Bad Idea



June 18, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

The Best Resources For Examining “Privilege”

The Ford Foundation has recently published a useful quiz to help people examine their own privilege and a similar older BuzzFeed quiz has recently been making the rounds on Social Media (I’ve also shared them here previously). Though I wouldn’t necessarily use those quizzes for high school (though they could be very effective for professional development purposes or for college classes), there are other resources I think would be usable. I thought I’d share them all here.

I’m adding this list to A Collection Of Useful Posts, Articles & Videos On Race & Racism – Help Me Find More.

You might also be interested in A Collection Of Advice On Talking To Students About Race, Police & Racism.

Here’s what I have so far – feel free to suggest others I missed:

Video: “Students Learn A Powerful Lesson About Privilege”

This is what white privilege is is from The Washington Post.

On Racism and White Privilege is from Teaching Tolerance.

My ‘Word Of 2014’: Privilege is from NPR.

This is what the legacy of ‘white privilege’ looks like in Bill O’Reilly’s hometown is from The Washington Post.

White Privilege, Quantified is from The Atlantic.

Take This Quiz To See How Much Of Your Success Came From Privilege is an article about The Ford Foundation quiz, What’s your American Dream Score?

How much white privilege do you have? A checklist from 1988 is still relevant today is from Quartz.
Whiteness: Guilt, Privilege, and Opportunity is from ISEROTOPE.

How Privileged Are You? is that quiz from BuzzFeed.

Beyond the Privilege Walk is from Teaching Tolerance.

“White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack” and “Some Notes for Facilitators”

June 16, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

A Beginning List For Learning About The 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics

The Tokyo Summer Olympics won’t be happening for awhile but, as I’ve done in the past, I’ll start this list and continue to add to it over the next two years.

You might also be interested in my “Best” lists about previous Olympic games:

The Best Resources On The 2016 Rio Olympics

The Best Sites For Learning About The Sochi 2014 Winter Olympic Games

The Best Sites For Learning About The London 2012 Olympics

The Best Sites To Learn About The Vancouver Winter Olympics

The Best Sites To Teach & Learn About The Olympics

Here’s what I have so far:

Here’s the official Tokyo Olympics site. This is another one. So, there appears to be two of them.

The Guardian is collecting and updating all their related stories here.

8 Reasons Why the Tokyo Olympics Will Be the Most Futuristic We’ve Ever Seen is from Gizmodo.

Breaking News English Lesson on 2020 Olympics is for ELLs.

“The ancient origins of the Olympics” is a TED-Ed lesson and video:

Check out the first post I wrote for The New York Times — focusing on the Olympics. It was written during the London games, but many of the ELL activities are still applicable.

The Olympic Museum’s Heroes! site is a must-see.

The BBC’s Primary History site on the ancient Greek Olympics is very good.

Scholastic’s Go For The Gold has some dated activities, but also a number of still useful resources.

Word Hurdles is a game for English Language Learners on the history of the Olympics.

50 stunning Olympic moments comes from The Guardian.

How much were the original Olympics like the modern Games? is from The BBC.

“Science Of The Summer Olympics” is a series of videos NBC has produced with the National Science Foundation.

Fists of Freedom: An Olympic Story Not Taught in Schools is from GOOD.

The Smithsonian Magazine has tons of Olympics resources, and I especially like the “Cheat Sheets” they have for each sport.

Infographic: discontinued sports of the modern Olympics is from The Telegraph.

INFOGRAPHIC: Olympic Physics is from NPR.

ESPN has great animations about all the sports – click on “Fan Guide.” They’re from the 2012 Games, but still live and useful.

13 Olympic Moments That Have Changed History

The evolution of the Summer Olympic Games poster

What Are The Worst Olympic Sports? is from Five Thirty Eight.

How The Olympic Medal Tables Explain The World is from NPR.

Political Tension at the Olympics: A History [Interactive Timeline] is from KQED.

June 10, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

The Best Resources For Learning About The Seasons Of The Year

There’s a brand new Simon’s Cat video talking about all the seasons of the year, and it would be wonderful for English Language Learner students.

I’ve embedded that video at the bottom of this post. It prompted me to think that it could be useful to bring all my posts about the different seasons together in one place.

Here they are (I’ve updated all of them):

The Best Sites For Learning About The Summer

The Best Sites For Images Of Fall Foliage (& For Teaching About The Season)

The Best Sites For Learning About The Winter Season

The Best Sites For Learning About The Spring Season

And here’s the Simon’s Cat video:

Another Simon’s Cat video is a good one for English Language Learners. Not only can students watch it and then retell what they saw happen both in written and oral form, but this episode is particularly good for reviewing the seasons.

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