What educator couldn’t use some great free resources? EducationWorld combed the Internet and found a variety of fun, educational, thought-provoking—and most importantly, FREE—items that teachers can use across subjects and grades.
|Image source: Posters and Prints Blog|
Build Positive School Climate
Amanda Oaks’ blog Kind Over Matter is dedicated to kind acts and inspirational stories, art and projects. The blog’s stated mission assures readers that “by holding onto your self-worth and self-respect, by doing good, by being a beacon of kindness and love, you set an example. When like-minded people get together, it forms community, and that acts as one big permission slip to the world.”
Accordingly, the wonderful printables available here feature positive messages that educators can share with co-workers and students in order to build a supportive climate. Great examples include Compliments for Co-Workers tear-off poster, Positive Thoughts tear-off poster and Kind Cards.
Spark Classroom Debate
John Stossel, former co-anchor of ABC’s 20/20 and current host of Stossel on The Fox Business Channel, has been known to provoke controversy. He is a staunch advocate of personal liberties and freedom from what he often views as excessive government interference in our private lives. Given Stossel’s definite political slant, these segments are perfect for stimulating debate in the high school classroom.
The 77-minute DVD Good Intentions Gone Wrong includes 10 segments from his television programs, chosen and edited specifically for the classroom. Topics covered include income disparity, censorship, government regulation and more. The segments are also available as streaming video. An accompanying Teacher Guide (available in English and Spanish) provides suggested lesson plans, discussion topics, worksheets and activities.
Prevent Underage Drinking
By 8th grade, 11% of young people are already drinking regularly (Monitoring the Future Survey, 2012). This scary statistic reminds us that substance abuse prevention efforts should begin as early as possible. Thankfully, this handy kit from the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) provides a poster, teaching guide, worksheets and a family guide to educate 5th- and 6th-grade pre-teens about the consequences of underage drinking. The materials feature colorful illustrations and comics, quizzes and activities that are consistent with national teaching standards.
Teach Responsible Pet Ownership
CareFRESH’s fun Critter College curriculum correlates with national and many state standards for science, math and language arts. Each lesson takes 15-30 minutes to complete and includes a video. Topics targeted to young pet caregivers include bringing a new pet home, handling small pets safely, cage cleanup, creating a happy habitat and more.
Use Braille to Communicate
The American Foundation for the Blind offers this helpful Braille Alphabet Card. Teach students how to read and write using this alternate form of expression and at the same time, build young people’s understanding of individuals with differing needs and abilities.
Play a Human-Anatomy Game
Bring a little fun to biology class! The Circulation Game is a two-team game that can accommodate 2-6 players (possibly 7 or 8) ages 8-14. Students learn about the structure and functions of the human circulatory system. Involve students in putting the game together, or set it up as an “edutainment” center activity in the classroom.
Offer Spooky Inspiration for Kids’ Writing
From children’s scary story writer R.L. Stine (of Goosebumps series fame), the Nightmare Room Writing Program Kit’s activities are designed to help students get over their anxiety about writing. Kids will learn that everyone has access to many ideas, and that no page or computer screen needs to stay blank for long.
Survive as a New Science Teacher
Flinn Scientific offers this cool First-Year Science Teacher’s Survival Kit, which includes demonstration ideas, safety contracts, safety posters, coupons, and a Flinn
Chemical & Biological Catalog/Reference Manual sampler.
Get Up to Speed on Common Childhood Concerns
American Public University’s Tips for Teachers cards provide common signs regarding child welfare concerns such as ADHD, autism, bullying and child abuse. The cards also provide strategies and techniques that help teachers support the well-being of students and increase effectiveness in the classroom. Created by a former teacher, the cards’ content is based on respected sources. These 6-inch by 8-inch laminated cards can be easily stored at the teacher's desk or tucked into training and planning materials.
Plan a Family Reading Night
Looking to promote reading while engaging families? PTO Today has gathered everything your school needs to plan a great Family Reading Night. The kit includes planning guidelines, an invitation flyer, activity and book ideas, event-promotion materials and more.