Thursday, December 18, 2014

43 Free iPad Apps for Geography, History, Civics & Social Studies Teachers

It's becoming a little harder to find free iPad apps, but they are out there. The dwindling school budgets make it difficult to afford the purchase of iPad carts AND apps for each device. When I posted this today, the apps listed below were free. Hope it stays that way. Have a suggestion? Please comment below.

Civic Quotes- "notable quotations from a variety of U.S. government leaders over the years "

Constitution for iPad- a copy of the Constitution on your iPad

Constitution and Federalist Papers- full text of the Constitution, 85 of the Federalist papers and more

My Congress- information on all  U.S. Congressional officials

Pocket Law Firm- game

The Presidency- for elementary and middle school students

3D National Parks Lite- 2 national parks on this version; 28 on the full version

Atlas for iPad

Earth Viewer- "EarthViewer is like a time machine for exploring Earth’s deep history. Based on the latest scientific research, it lets you scroll through the last 4.5 billion years with your fingertips."

Geo Photo Explorer- "
an easy way to explore, organize, manage photo galleries and share photos from Google Panoramio and Flick."

Google Earth

History: Maps of the World- interactive maps

Historypin"reveals photos near your current location and allows you to view them layered over the modern scene in front of you. You can also explore Collections of some of the best old photos from around the world, wherever you are."

Sphere 360ยบ Photography"See Paris from a hot air balloon, feel the energy from the American ldol stage, and hold onto your raft as you approach Hubbard Glacier."

Stack the States Lite- "
learn state capitals, shapes, geographic locations, flags and more"
StrataLogica- much more than a geography reference tool

American Revolution Interactive Timeline for iPad- developed by the Museum of the American Revolution

Beyond Textbooks 2010: American History Games- from Pearson Education

Civil War Lite: History Challenge

Clever Crazes You the Time Traveler- for grades K-8

Discovery Education Techbook- if your school has Discovery Education Social Studies Techbook services

Early Jamestown- interactive textbook tells the story of Jamestown

History Line- "History Line is a collaborative learning game for the iPad focusing on US History. The game can be played by 1-6 players."

iAmerica: The Pocket Guide to United States History and the Presidency

Infinity Ring: Revenge of the Redcoats- "Revenge of the Redcoats is set in Washington, DC, during the War of 1812. Dak, Sera, and fellow HystorianRiq have to convince Dolley Madison to leave the White House—before the SQ burns it to the ground!"

James Madison's Montpelier- "
makes history come alive at Montpelier, the historic home and grounds of President James Madison, the Father of the Constitution, and his vivacious wife Dolley. See the Madisons’ works of art and fine china, explore the latest archaeological excavations, and even discover the hiking trails of the Landmark Forest, all in stunning detail with interactive maps and image galleries."

Mapping Revolutionary Boston- interactive map of Boston during 1760s and 1770s

Mission U.S.: Think Fast! About the Pasta- "
fast-paced trivia game that introduces hundreds of fascinating facts about different eras of American history."

National Archives Docs Teach- choose from various activities to teach about historic events 

The Revolution: Interactive Guide- for high school students

Social Studies Friendzy- for grades K-8

TED Talks- inspiring, motivational talks on various subjects

To the Brink: JFK and the Cuban Missile Crisis- photographs, documents, and recording from the National Archives come to life in this app

Today in History Lite- over 100k historical events

U.S. History Timeline

AP World History- 8,000 BCE to the present

BBC History Magazine- from Romans to Henry VIII to Winston Churchill

Classical World Lite: History Challenge-  ancient Greece and Rome

Cold War Lite: History Challenge

European Exploration: The Age of Discovery

Napoleon: History Challenge Lite

World History Games- Middle school; "More than 100 different games cover dozens of topics, such as Ancient Rome and the Rise of Christianity, The Muslim World, Spread of Civilizations in East Asia, Kingdoms and Trading States of Africa, The Industrial Revolution, World War II and its Aftermath, and more."

WWI Lite: History Challenge

WWII Lite: History Challenge

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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas...

I know we are close to the holiday break, but if you were looking for any resources, I'm sure you're aware of the giant listing of all holidays I have on the the right side of the blog. This list has many new sites added, and I update What a Listing of Holidays on a regular basis. Happy Holidays!!

10 Christmas Science Activities

A to Z Teacher Stuff- sort resources by age level

Christmas Around the World- long list of countries

Christmas K-3 Theme Page- from Enchanted Learning

Christmas Teacher Resources- from TeacherVision

Christmas Webquest- for younger children

Christmas Worksheets and Printables- from

Easy Christmas Crafts- from DLTK

K-12 Teacher Resources- nice listing includes lesson plans, worksheets, interactive online activities

Puzzles and Word Searches

Super Teacher Worksheets- includes puzzles and Christmas math worksheets

Teacher's Guide to Christmas Holidays- from TeAchnology

Teacher Planet-lessons, worksheets, clip art

The Teacher's Corner-how Christmas is celebrated around the world

Winter Holidays Around the World- from the Lesson Plans page

Cartoons Only a Teacher Would Love

Need a laugh? I sure do. Here ya go.........................

Monday, December 15, 2014

Collaborating With Reluctant Teachers

Are you a school librarian who is trying to collaborate with a reluctant teacher? I personally have found it difficult to get my teachers engaged on the high school level. With all the new SGO requirements, and PARCC Testing on the horizon, my teachers are more overwhelmed than ever. And overwhelmed teachers do not have any extra room in their schedules. So when I received a request on Twitter about this topic, I thought about the ways that I have attempted to get reluctant teachers involved in a collaboration.
Being the tech-geek that I am, I approached my teachers at the beginning of the school year with an email which listed all the great things I had to offer as the school's media specialist. Keep reminding teachers how collaboration will help them in their classrooms, and how their students will benefit as well. Two teachers are better than one. Here are a few sites I pulled up on the subject......

10 Ways to Change the Minds of Tech-Reluctant Staff

Collaboration and the Learning Community

Increasing Technology Integration Through Collaboration
Between Media Specialists and Teachers

School Library Media Collaborations: Benefits and Barriers

The Teacher's Take: The Instructional Role of the School Librarian

Sign I made for teachers and students
to see how approachable I am.
(modified after I saw this on the Internet-

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Celebrating Kwanzaa: 17 Helpful Resources

The African-American holiday Kwanzaa is celebrated from December 26th -January 1st.  Created in 1965 by Maulana Karenga, it is a celebration of family and culture. The word "Kwanzaa" means "fruits of the harvest."

The African American Holiday Kwanzaa- from the Orange County Register

Apples 4 the Teacher- coloring pages

Class Brain-coloring pages

Kids' Domain- coloring pages

Kwanzaa Celebrations Across the Country- slideshow from the Washington Post

Kwanzaa Free Worksheets- Google search

Kwanzaa Lesson- from EL Civics (ESL)

Kwanzaa Lesson Plans- from TeAchnology

Kwanzaa Videos- from WatchKnowLearn

Teachers First- planning materials, fun, games

Teacher Planet- lessons, worksheets

What is Kwanzaa? - from Scholastic

Amazing! 74 Infographics for Teacher-Librarians (L.A. Teachers Too!)

When your budget is low on dollars, you need to become creative when it comes to everything in your school library. Since we have a computer lab in our library-media center, (and lots of wall space...) I have decorated the lab with posters and infographics. You might have seen some of my original work, including 7 Things to Know About EBSCO, and the READ poster. There are also many posters which help students format their research paper, search for Google images, and understanding search results. When I began this search I never expected to find so many infographics for school librarians! If you are a language arts teacher, you will also find many related to grammar and reading below.

10 Do's and Don'ts for Effective Vocabulary Instruction

10 Hyphenation Tips

10 Step Book Report

11 Rules: How and When to Use a Period

12 Most Misunderstood Words in English

15 Most Useful Phrasal Verbs

The 15 Punctuation Marks

21 Rules: How and When to Use a Comma

40 Years of E-books 

Apostrophes: The Importance of Good Grammar

The Most Annoying Writing Mistakes

Passive and Non-Aggressive Voices

Past Tense 101


The Top 10 List of Mark Twain's Popular Quotes

Troublesome Words

You Should Read This Before You Write That


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Wednesday, December 10, 2014

The Value of Primary Sources

Several summers ago, I took a wonderful course through the University of Wisconsin Stout on teaching with primary sources. (My post on primary sources is HERE.) Over the years, I have kept in touch with the course's professor, Mary Alice Anderson, who has been a terrific source herself. Recently, Mary Alice contributed to the new publication, Interacting with History: Teaching with Primary Sources Edited by Katharine Lehman. Her chapter is entitled, "Discovering Local History Resources in Your Own Backyard." I not only recommend the book, but if you are a media specialist 
looking for graduate credits, take an online class with Mary Alice!
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