"Like Infotopia.info, created by Dr Michael Bell, Kidtopia is a Google Custom search engine of SELECTED sites. Like Infotopia, Kidtopia includes only sites previously recommended by librarians and teachers. Like Infotopia, Kidtopia is also free.
Kidtopia, however, is aimed at providing information for lower and middle elementary students, while Infotopia serves upper elementary, middle, and some high school."
Listen to Dr Joyce Valenza talk about how student research has changed from the 1980s to today. "A must watch by anyone interested in student research, libraries or project-based learning." An important (and humorous) look at the evolution of student work.
Literature, Poetry, Music and Bestsellers for Middle School
Here is a handy guide for younger readers (and their teachers and parents). Scroll down the page to see an extensive list of novels and poetry for the Middle School age group. Each novel mentioned covers: Intro, Summary, Themes, Quotes, Characters, Analysis, Questions, Quizzes and Best of the Web. (There is quite a range of titles listed, some do seem quite advanced for this age group, but the summaries etc are very useful for the teacher. Each introduction has a "Why Should I Care" section that keys in on the reason for studying the novel.) Some parts of the site require an account.
Links to Free Downloads, Google Tutorials, Favorite Resources, Video Creation Resources, and Books & Things.
In 2010 Free Technology for Teachers was awarded the Edublogs Awards for "Best Resource Sharing Blog," "Best Ed Tech Support," and "Best Individual Blog." FTfT is read by an audience of more than 36,000 daily subscribers ( as of July 1, 2010).
Finding the right book for the age 6-9 "good reader"
If you are looking for books for the six to nine year-old reader who is reading above grade level, sometimes it's hard to find text that is challenging enough without also exposing the kids to issues that are above their maturity level. The site abookandahug.com has now added a "Middle Reader/Careful Content" keyword item that fits the bill.
Click on the "Find a Book" icon (soon to be Search) and you'll see a drop down box of keywords.
"These Search Education lessons were developed by Google Certified Teachers and the Search Education team to help you do just that. The lessons are short, modular and not specific to any discipline so you can mix and match to what best fits the needs of your classroom. Additionally, all lessons come with a companion set of slides (and some with additional resources) to help you guide your in-class discussions. They are all under Creative Commons Attribution Share-alike, so feel free to adapt them and use them as you see fit! Just please link back to this page."
"At TeacherCast, you will find Screencasts demonstrating software, websites, and little tricks that will become essential for you in your classroom. We record Audio Podcasts featuring interviews with great professional educators. Finally, we will also maintain a great collection of links to some great apps, websites, and journals where we will feature the latest gadget reviews and how they can be best used in the classroom."
Melissa Techman (mtechman@K12ALBEMARLE.org) is putting together a school libraryDaily 5 wiki for sharing ideas and resources. (If you email her, she will add you as an editing member, so you can contribute.)
Thought-provoking article on the "state of boys' reading" from the New York Times. "...Whereas boys used to lag behind girls in reading in the early grades, statistics show, they soon caught up. Not anymore..."