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Each week, Education World's Great Sites for Teaching About ... page highlights Web sites to help educators work timely themes into their lessons. Internet educator Walter McKenzie selected this week's sites, which are among the best on the Web for teaching about Hawaii.

  1. Hawaii USA
    This site offers little in the way of graphics, but the basic facts it provides about Hawaii's cities, symbols, and climate make it a good place to begin a study of the Aloha state.

  2. Hawaiian Photo Tour
    This visually appealing tour of Kauai, Oahu, Molokai, Lanai, Maui, and Hawaii includes maps, as well as ground, aerial, and satellite photographs depicting nearly every aspect of life in the Hawaiian Islands. The gorgeous images are sure to get students thinking about creating their own virtual tours!

  3. Hawai'i Volcanoes
    Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park offers easy-to-read text about Hawaii's natural and cultural resources, accompanied by vivid photographs and illustrations of the state's landscape and wildlife. Visitors can also read about the Hawaiian Language to discover why the title of the site is spelled correctly here!

  4. Find Your Hawaiian Name
    This site delivers even more than it promises. Visitors can not only type in a name and learn its Hawaiian equivalent but also find their pet's Hawaiian name, learn the Hawaiian equivalent of many English words, and explore a Hawaiian pronunciation guide. (Don't even try to close the annoying and persistent pop-up window at this site. Just click on the main Web page to put it in the background until you're done.)

  5. E komo mai. Nou ka hale
    Fourth-grade students at Kapolei Elementary School in Kapolei, Hawai'i, created this fact-filled but easy-to-navigate site based on island geology. Visitors can study lava and legends, learn how the islands were formed, and even play a native game. The step-by-step account of the site's creation might even inspire your students to create their own ThinkQuest entry!

  6. Wayfinding
    Clearly created by kids, this ThinkQuest entry is the perfect place for students to explore Hawaiian history and Pacific navigation. Although graphically busy and not technically perfect, the site displays an enthusiasm for the subject that's both appealing and informative. The interactive game is the perfect way to review content and keep students involved and thinking.

  7. Albatross Project
    This fascinating site reports on a project that follows the trek of the albatross along the Hawaiian Islands National Wildlife Refuge. The information provided here is hardly limited to the albatross, however. Visitors also learn about Hawaii's weather, climate, geology, and biology, and they discover how the research team uses satellites to track traveling albatrosses. In fact, why not join the project and learn about it all first-hand?

  8. Endangered Species
    Did you know Hawaii is the endangered species capital of the United States? This child-centered site offers insights into the ecological concerns that impact the flora and fauna of this seemingly unspoiled paradise. Be sure to take part in the interactive Wiki-Wiki Scavenger Hunt while you're there!

  9. Hawaiian Plant Detectives
    Kapunahala Elementary School in Kaneohe, Hawaii, offers this excellent, kid-friendly resource about Hawaii's rich plant life. Visitors click on a plant name to find a thorough discussion of cultural, mythical, and scientific information about the plant. Each plant page also provides fascinating facts, photographs, and labeled diagrams, and the site includes links to additional plant information. This is not your usual horticultural yawner!

  10. Natural Disasters Of Hawaii
    Every paradise has its problems, of course, and Hawaii is no exception. Even there, a number of natural dangers lurk beyond the beautiful images. This ThinkQuest entry examines the scientific principles behind volcanoes, tsunamis, hurricanes, and earthquakes.

  11. Center For Volcanology
    No study of the Hawaiian Islands would be complete without an examination of the volcanoes that formed them. This fabulous site offers facts, images, history, science, and current events information about the volcanoes on each of the islands. Learn which are active, which lie dormant, and which might actually be extinct!

  12. Pele's Journey
    Students at Hawaii's Lunalilo Elementary School created this ThinkQuest site about the travels of a legendary girl named Pele. Even the youngest elementary school students will enjoy hearing Pele's story and tracing her journey from Tahiti to Hawaii. In addition, the site provides a game quiz and student-written poems that are sure to awaken the creative spirit in all students.

    Walter McKenzie is a former classroom teacher, a consultant, and editor of the Innovative Teaching newsletter.

    Walter McKenzie
    Education World®
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