I once had a teacher say to me after a training on using internet resources to enrich and expand teaching and learning, “You’re a technology integration specialist. You should assemble a list of all the good website out there! Classroom teachers don’t have time to find all this good stuff.” I agreed, but shared how I didn’t have time either! The task of identifying and sharing internet resources could be a full-time job in and of its own!
Well, actually there are bloggers who do identify and list great internet resources–and do a much better job than I could ever do. I’ve already written about two of these blogs in Cultivating the Educational Technologist–FreeTechnology for Teachers and iLearn Technology.
I’ve saved one of the best sources for good internet resources for educators for last–its called TeachersFirst. TeachersFirst goes one better than the blogs I mentioned above–TeacherFirst sends you a weekly email that contains a manageable list of resources and weblinks. I know, this sounds like old listserv technology (and it probably is) but I find an email in my inbox gets my attention these days more than an RSS feed does.
Here’s how it works–sign up at Teacher First and you receive an email on Sunday morning (maybe that’s the trick–Sunday morning–are teachers more likely to have the time to browse a list of resources?) Anyway, a week doesn’t pass that I don’t find at least one web resource that is valuable and useful for the teachers with whom I work.
When you navigate to the TeacherFirst website, you can find tagged archives of everything their editors have identified, so you can search their extensive archives for free online resources about virtually any topic or tool you might be interested in. The identified online interactives, lessons, downloadable classroom materials, and Web2.0 tools include a succinct description, suggested age and curricular connections, and then some ideas about how it might be used in the classroom.
The TeachersFirst website has lots more–online live and archived pd sessions, weekly brain twisters, a daily “Dates that Matter” feature, a travel adventure with Geo and Merie (that engages students with fun interactive features), great online tutorials on everything from Wikis to Blogs, and the list goes on and on. I’ll save some of these features for future posts.
For now–go to TeachersFirst.org and create a login, and signup for their weekly email. I guarantee that you won’t be disappointed.