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Posts tagged ‘news’

Newsela: Current events, connections to contemporary issues, and literacy

Need a place to connect past with present? Need writing prompts? Need hundreds of articles about current events in an easy to access place? Need articles with leveled reading? Need a searchable database that filters by keyword, grade level, Common Core reading anchors, and articles with machine scored quizzes?

If your answer to even one of those questions is yes, then I’ve got just the tool for you. Newsela is a free (so far) site that provides all sorts of things perfect for social studies teachers looking to integrate literacy and contemporary issues into their classrooms.

I’m spending a lot of time this week working with small groups of social studies teachers, leading conversations about our new state standards and what that can look like in the classroom. One of the things I enjoy most about those kinds of conversations is the sharing that we all do – strategies, ideas, suggestions, web sites, just about anything that’s going to help us do our jobs better.

And Stephenie came through. A fifth grade teacher in a small parochial school, Stephenie has been using Newsela since last spring and loves it. She shared how she was using the tool and we ended spending the next hour or so exploring, talking, suggesting, and generally falling in love with the possibilities of Newsela.

At its most basic level, Read more

85,000 reasons to head over to YouTube

Apparently going to the movies isn’t the same as it used to be. In 2014, there are no cartoons before the feature film. And no newsreel. At one time, I guess this sort of stuff was a big deal in the movie-going experience. MovieTone News and other companies would create weekly news updates that would run as short video clips before the main event. Sort of the 1940s version of the current social media / 24 hour news cycle.

British Pathe was the British MovieTone News equivalent, known for first-class reporting and a uniquely entertaining style. Reporting on events from 1896 to 1976, their collection includes footage from around the world of major events, famous faces, fashion trends, travel, sport and culture. The archive is particularly strong in its coverage of the First and Second World Wars.

Their collection of 3,500 hours of footage was digitized in 2002 and is now accessible to anyone around the world for free on the British Pathe YouTube channel.

How cool is that? Read more

MACE tech goodness: Free news sites for social studies teachers

It’s that time of year. The MACE tech conference in Manhattan opened its doors this morning and I’m loving it. It is about as nerdy a place as you can find – in a good way, of course. Just a lot of smart people getting together and sharing tech ideas / resources. I always learn so much and meet so many cool folks.

(Cody, my marketing boss at ESSDACK, would want me to mention our own very nerdy tech conference called Podstock. He would want me to let you know that Podstock is July 16-18 at the Old Town Conference Center in Wichita. He would also want me to share that early registration with a $50 discount ends June 1 and that the pre-conference is already about 75% full.

But it seems a bit weird to share information about our tech conference while I’m attending another tech conference, so I’ll probably just tell Cody that I did talk about Podstock held in Wichita on July 16-18 and hope he buys it.)

So the focus here is on the great sessions I get to attend and the ideas that I run across. I’ll share as much as can. Have fun! Read more

Crisis in Ukraine: Teaching resources

Looking for some resources to help with class discussions on the crisis in Ukraine? Here’s a quick short list.

Background:

Teaching resources and lesson plans:

And don’t go anywhere without checking out what Larry Ferlazzo has to share both here and here.

13 resources for learning about the government shutdown

I’m hoping that by the time you read this, Congress has moved past kicking sand at each other and turned the government back on. I’m not holding my breath but who knows, maybe some grownups will show up and actually do something productive.

Until that happens, you might find the following resources useful in your conversations: Read more

Tip of the Week: TV News Search and Borrow

The Internet Archive recently released  a new, very cool tool called TV News Search & Borrow. The searchable collection now contains 350,000 news programs collected over three years from national and metro U.S. networks. You can search by keyword, network, and specific TV show. You can also limit the time period searched by using the timeline slider.

The tool archives the closed caption transcripts of the different news shows and uses that as a searchable database that is linked to the actual video clip. Very cool idea.

And it can help you to find and use a wide variety of news coverage quickly and easily. It’s stated purpose is

to help engaged citizens better understand the issues and candidates in the 2012 U.S. elections by allowing them to search closed captioning transcripts to borrow relevant television news programs.  The archive is updated with new broadcasts 24 hours after they are aired. Older materials are also being added.

Read more

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